Day Job/Night Job: Tim Morgan Rescues Pits and Pursues Politics

Tim Morgan and family
Tim Morgan, his wife, Penny, and daughters, Samantha and Grace, started Second Chance Ranch in St. Charles, IL, and converted an old barn into a kennel.

My father used to tell me there are two types of people in the world---drivers and passengers, participants and observers, those who do and those who don’t. Some folks lead naturally and others are more than content to watch from the sidelines.

Tim Morgan, COO at Spanesi Americas, is undoubtedly a serious driver when it comes to his life, both personal and professional.

When Morgan sees any type of injustice or someone in need, he acts quickly and definitively. Several factors in his life recently have led directly to his newest passions---pit bulls and local politics.

Morgan’s career in the collision repair industry spans 44 years as a technician, dealership body shop manager, collision repair facility owner, educator and director of collision repair at a nationally accredited technical college.

Twenty years ago, Morgan redirected his career when he began working for companies focusing on the distribution of structural repair equipment, holding positions as a trainer, sales director, general manager and managing director.

For the past eight years, he has been the COO for Spanesi Americas, a subsidiary of Spanesi SpA in Padova, Italy, that designs, develops and manufactures an entire range of body shop equipment.

Morgan began Second Chance Ranch, a nonprofit pet rescue organization back in 2018, when he witnessed pit prejudice and felt it was just a bunch of bull, he said.

He purchased a 3-acre farm and converted his barn into a kennel that can accommodate four dogs at a time. The conversion is complete and the kennels are simply awaiting final inspection, delayed due to the pandemic.

A beautiful black and white pit bull came into the life of Penny, Tim's wife, before she met Tim.

“A family friend decided to bring the girls home the runt of the litter,” he said. “She was so tiny and a little beaten up from the rest of the pups. That started everything and led to Second Chance Ranch.”

Now the ranch has three pits on-site in addition to Daisy---Spike, Tank and Nacho.

Three years ago, Morgan’s oldest daughter, Samantha, produced a short video, "The Beginning of Our Journey," as part of her junior high school English class, using local news clips and other footage to illustrate the problem. In the film, Daisy is adopted by the Morgan family and becomes an integral part of their lives.

There's a lot of misinformation out there about pit bulls, so Morgan began using Daisy to show the world the truth about the breed.

“Whenever someone gets bit, the media latches on to it and won’t let go,” he said. “It’s hard to dispel that, but from my experience, this is one of the gentlest breeds you’ll ever encounter. Pit bulls can fight if they are trained to do so, but in the end, all they want to do is please their owners. I tell people that the only time Daisy barks is when she wants to jump up on the bed and sleep with us.

“We are committed to helping our animals,” Morgan said. “Seeing a need for an energetic, nonprofit to support our community's pit bull population, we formed our organization to provide sensible solutions. We take our convictions and turn them into action.

"Sometimes our connections can find a home for a pet before the animal needs to change housing. We currently have a rescue that will allow our babies to venture in and out to over 3 acres while protecting them from the elements and giving each one their own independent space, while additionally giving us indoor space for training and support of our furry friends.”

Saving dogs’ lives is a passion but it’s also a job. Whenever Morgan and his family take on any pit bull, they make certain to lead with care, concern and proper training. It can also add up financially, with visits to the vet to make sure they are current on their boosters and medications.

“Members and volunteers provide the momentum that helps us do good work,” he said. “Using community-driven models, we take actions that make a long-lasting difference."

In his second endeavor, Morgan is running for trustee in the Village of Campton Hills, IL, as a write-in candidate for an election on Feb. 23. His message is clear and concise.

“I will support the community, not a personal agenda,” he said. “We need someone who will listen and support your ideas, fight for the needs of your community and earn your respect. For someone who truly cares for your community, look no further.

"Moving to Village of Campton Hills had a journey within itself, but it’s safe to say the area brought me and my family joy to have a small piece of the American dream, and not be lost in an overdeveloped community development."

Once he jumped into the fray, Morgan saw running for office in this tight-knit community wasn’t going to be easy, and the fact the town’s offices were closed for COVID protection surely didn’t help.

By the time he navigated through all of the proper documentation required to run, the deadline was past, so he had to enter as a write-in candidate. It also triggered a primary election because previously the current trustees were the only candidates for the office.

Problems with zoning and other issues motivated Morgan to run for office.

“When I moved there, I began to look at the community, and in September of 2019, the township tried to rezone my property and several others to residential without even having a public meeting," Morgan said. "That’s when I could see that there needed some new blood and I felt as though I could use my background and experience to help.”

Morgan reaches out to help the community in many other ways, by helping families in need with gift cards, working with the Adopt-A-Highway Program, and assisting the local community in getting a K-9 officer for law enforcement.

While many people wait for their lives to change, Morgan makes things happen, and helping both animals and people will always be on the top of his list.

“There are new challenges all the time and as we get through this pandemic, there will be more,” he said.

Saving pit bulls and playing a leadership role in his community are Morgan’s passions. What are yours?

If you’re interested in supporting the Second Chance Ranch through a donation, visit the website.

Ed Attanasio

Ed Attanasio is an automotive journalist and Autobody News columnist based in San Francisco.

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