Roger Voter: A Man on the Move and Having Fun

Westminster's Roger Voter has accomplished at lot at 22, but he maintains that his primary goal is to have fun.

Roger Voter is a busy man. And he doesn't expect to slow down any time soon.

At 22, Voter has already accomplished what many take a whole career to do. He owns a local business; he has a job as a lighting technician for a DC-based company; he is an artist who has had work displayed in shows; he has worked for Congressman Roscoe Bartlett; he did an internship at NASA; and last week he earned his undergraduate degree in business from Johns Hopkins University.

Voter, whose parents own on Main Street, graduated from in 2008 and went to . He then transferred to Johns Hopkins.

Voter said that some of his most valuable experiences have come from internships he had while at Carroll Community College. He had two internships (at NASA and with Bartlett) both of which gave him unique insights into government, politics and people, he said.

"I always said I wouldn't commute or work for the government and I did both last summer," Voter joked.

But government internships and school weren't the only things on Voter's mind last year. He also started a business.

Voter and a partner started Save Point, a retro video game meeting place and store at the TownMall. Voter said he found a partner with expertise in the gaming field that melded nicely with his own expertise in business.

"We've already expanded three times," Voter said. "The mall wanted us to cater to the people who hang out at the mall, and we've been able to do that."

Voter takes care of the business end while his partner runs the daily operations and gaming side of the store.

But Voter was just getting started.

Today, the Westminster native is in Ecuador launching a nonprofit he created with a classmate at Johns Hopkins as their senior capstone project. Voter and his partner created International Medical Aid to build awareness of hygiene and to help diagnose people’s heath problems in undeveloped areas of the world.

"That’s my fun project right now, it takes up all my time," Voter said.

Voter said this trip is just the first phase of getting the organization off the ground. While in Ecuador, he and his partner will promote the benefits of good hygiene -- distributing toothbrushes and soap to underpriviledged people.

Voter said the idea was his classmate's, Homyaon Ghassemi, who is an EMT and the son of a doctor. With Ghassemi's background in medicine and previous work with simliar nonprofits, and Voter's business experience, Voter said the two decided the nonprofit was a perfect fit.

In the future, as the organization grows, they will have a mobile clinic on these trips. Voter said they plan to work with a local Equadorian doctor and provide some diagnostic testing to help people understand what sort of medical help they need.

"This is sort of a test phase. After this we plan to go to Africa then maybe China or another area of need," Voter said. "Right now we're looking for supporters and trying to promote ourselves. We want this to be a successful nonprofit in every way."

When Voter isn't opening businesses or starting nonprofits, he is practicing photography or working as a lighting technician for a DC-based company.

So what's next for Voter? He said in July he intends to reorganize, and relax.

"I’m going to reorganize my life," he said. "I have a lot of projects I'm working on. I want to take notes on everything and figure out where my next step is, where to delegate my time."

But Voter said fun is always at the heart of his ventures.

"Everything I do is for fun basically," Voter said "That’s my mission, my vision right now: To have fun. Since I grew up in the business world (his parents are business owners), I like to have fun in the business world."

Although he doesn't necessarily have a long-term plan, Voter said he intends to be a Westminster boy for the long haul.

"It's hard to say where I’ll be in 10 years. I don’t dare to ponder that," he said. "It's always been my long-term goal to grow my parents' business, I think they have a unique niche. I want to grow and expand that."

At this point, success isn't attached to money. He said as long as he's having fun and learning something, then he'll consider himself a success.

"I would consider myself successful," Voter said.  "I would say that because I’m being interviewed by Patch right now. I’m doing something and people want to find out about it. My personal success is having fun and being able to walk away with an experience, something I can talk about, something I can use in my future."

Roger Voter is a young man worth keeping an eye on. It's unlikely he'll slow down any time soon.

"I’ll always be around Westminster," Voter said. "I’ll never sell my Mom’s house that was built by her great grandfather. I might travel a lot but will never lose my connection to this city. I love Westminster."


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