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The parables Jerome Summers gives his readers arise from his own life lessons. His family has lived in Evanston for more than 100 years.

The book chronicles his geographical, spiritual, and financial journeys, as he sought what most people seek – love and money and the peace and freedom to enjoy them.

An entrepreneur, at various times Mr. Summers started and operated a string of small businesses in Wisconsin and a landscaping company in the Chicago area. He mentored the young people who worked in his shops and offered advice and support to those he thought could use a boost. While he made money, he was not always successful but he remained determined and optimistic. He confesses, “By the 1990s I had already been homeless twice, so I hated losing money.”

The seven books in this slim volume are each composed of several parables or vignettes about lessons learned and earned wisdom. “Start Where You Are” is the first lesson in the first book, “The Facts Don’t Matter.” Mr. Summers writes “When you make up your mind, the facts don’t matter. When you make a commitment, the right people always show up.”

Talking with students at his alma mater, he tells them, “I never want to work just to earn a living. I never want to compromise the integrity of my dreams just so I can pay bills. Don’t discount your dreams. They are a powerful expression of who you are.”

Mr. Summers is back in Evanston. He served on the District 65 School Board. During his tenure on the Board, he advocated for a school in the City’s Fifth Ward. He retired from the Board in 2013 but continues to be an advocate on local issues. The book is available on