Technology

Full time family: Ross I.T. Services co-owner Kellie Ross finds balance between family and running a business

By Eddie Velazquez, posted 2 weeks ago
From right to left: The Ross family includes Ross I.T. Services Founder and Co-owner Sam Ross, the youngest in the family Caroline (7), Co-owner Kellie Ross and oldest daughter Hannah (14). Photo provided by Kellie Ross.

For the past 18 years, Kellie Ross, the co-owner of family-owned local business Ross I.T. Services, has been a vital part of the company’s operations, handling public outreach and marketing. For 14 of those, she has also been an anchor for her family as a mother.

“I just love them so much,” Ross said of her daughters Caroline and Hannah. “They are the best kids in the whole world, truly. They are just as busy as I am.”

Hannah, Ross said, is an academic overachiever and a crafty thespian. Caroline is a dazzling dancer and an up-and-coming athlete, Ross said.

“And they're just kind of night and day, but also just the same,” Ross noted.

The journey of Ross’ information technology (IT) business, which has grown significantly over the years thanks to what Ross described as savvy and almost prescient moves made by her husband Sam Ross, also mirrors that of Ross’ experiences in motherhood. 

Just like the company’s early and continued success due to the Ross’ family ties, knowledge of the local community and tech expertise, Ross said she felt a loving embrace from those around her.

“We were busy sort of just from the beginning and that was the biggest blessing because we had a community that really lifted us up and kind of helped us out and kept us busy,” she said. “I can remember holding (Hannah) in my arms and trying to answer the phone. I learned really quickly that to really be a successful working mom, it was gonna take way more than just me.”

Ross said she found that community in her and her husband’s families. 

“It was our friends that we had around us and my husband who is truly a working dad,” Ross said.

But it was also Ross’ role models of working mom’s who helped her find her way through motherhood and entrepreneurship.

“My husband’s mom’s name was Linda and I never knew her, but she had six kids and she was a working mom,” Ross said. “From her, I learned it was possible to be a provider and a nurturer at the same time. My husband's family are some of the most wonderful people you’ll ever meet in your life and I always wondered ‘how in the world did she do that.’”

Ross’ own mother Hilda, she said, taught her that there is always time for everything. 

“She was like a literal full time provider but she also spent so much time with me that I never felt like she was a working mom,” Ross said. “From her, I learned that it was okay to want to be as successful in your career as you are as a mom.”

From her sister in law, Kelly, Ross said she learned about the importance of rallying around a family. “She kind of showed me really the value in having your community around you,” Ross said. “You can be strong, you can be successful, and you can still take care of the people that are around you and you can still invest in your community. But you don’t have to do it by yourself.”

The meaning and importance of family in Ross’ life, she said, is something that leaches into her company’s work ethic and mission.

“What we want to do with Ross is that we really just want to take care of our clients and employees like they are family,” she said. 

Part of that includes having a readily available hotline to address IT and other tech issues promptly. Other services include client/server and peer-to-peer compute, networking, servers IT work on desktops and laptops, network design, multi-site networking, custom-built computers, cabling, system repair and upgrades, system design, customized information back ups and virus removal.

One of the latest additions to the suite of services is work on phone systems.

“Phones or cell phones are almost as important to a business as your computers are,” Ross said. “It all links together and for us this is just continuing to move forward and seeing how we can service our clients in a way that makes us proud and keeps them doing the business that they need to do.”

Ross I.T. Services has been running strong since it was established in 2006 by Sam Ross. Sam has been working in the computer industry for over 10 years and has undergone extensive training and schooling from Fayetteville Tech, Fayetteville State and Cisco Networking Academy. Ross I.T. Services is located at 101 Hunter Circle in Fayetteville.

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Find out more about Ross I.T. Services at www.rossitservices.com.

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