Police officer, brother start greeting card business
"We share the same brain," he said.
"Cpl. Clarence "Buzz" Cornwell has issued plenty of speeding tickets and traffic citations during his 14 years with the county Police Department. Margeaux Corby — The Capital County police Cpl. Clarence “Buzz” Cornwell, left, and Douglas Sentz Jr. show off the first products of their new greeting card business, D & B Originals LLC.
The graduation card is currently available at the company’s Web site at www.myspace.com/dandboriginals. But in recent weeks he's been handing out a different kind of document - greeting cards.
Cornwell, along with his brother, Douglas Sentz Jr., recently announced the start of their boutique greeting card business, D & B Originals LLC. The company's first product, a graduation greeting card, is available for purchase on their Web site at www.myspace.com/dandboriginals. Cornwell, whose haircut mirrors his nickname, said he hasn't tried to use his experience on the force to create "license and registration, please" or "you're going downtown, pal" cards. "I can come up with some ideas," Cornwell said jokingly. "I only have about six years left. I'm hoping to get my pension and move on to bigger things."
Both Cornwell and his brother said they talked about starting a business for several years and wanted to create a company unique to the county and their talents. "If you can support a company that is local and that is putting the money right back into local sales people, local graphic designers and keeping everything else going, you should buy our card," Sentz said.
The brothers are not the only family members involved in the company. Cornwell's brother-in-law, Joe Gaeta, is the company's graphic designer and his wife, Kelly, will use her artistic ability to help design cards in the future. "My wife is excellent with drawing and art," Cornwell said. "We want to come up with different ideas for cards, and we might have her come up with the artwork."
The graduation card that is currently available for purchase contains a motivational and forward-thinking message taken from a poem Sentz wrote years ago. "He's always been a little bit more creative than me, but we've always thought of the big picture," Cornwell said, referring to his brother. "We didn't grow up with a lot of money and we just wanted a better life for ourselves, and we figured this is the best way to do it."
Cornwell will co-own the business in addition to his normal patrol duties and the occasional off-duty hours he spends working security jobs around the county. His brother is a retail manager for a small business in the county and a former freelance writer for local companies.
The brothers are currently in the process of contacting local stores to sell their cards. Sentz said they hope to have about 10 cards on the market by the end of the year, all of which will have original designs and messages not already on the market. "There are a million cards that say 'I love you, Mom' but can we say something that's different? If we can't then we're not going to do it," he said.
Neither Cornwell nor Sentz said they are worried about the potential strain of being brothers as well as business partners. Cornwell said he couldn't remember the last time the two quarreled and Sentz agreed. "We share the same brain," he said".
Source: Annapolis The Capital