Colorado Economic Recovery and Accountability

Larry Mingo

Larry Mingo

Larry Mingo

"If it hadn’t been for this, I’d be out on the street."

Larry Mingo is a happy man these days. The 52-year-old from Denver had been struggling to stay afloat since the deli where he worked as cook closed a year or two ago. After losing his job, he became homeless for about six months but managed to stay off the streets by sleeping at the homes of friends and relatives. He worked temporary jobs and often looked for work at local workforce centers.

“It was pretty hectic. You didn’t have any steady payroll coming in. It was a day by day situation,” Mr. Mingo said.

Last fall, while applying for food stamps, Mr. Mingo learned about a job training program at the Denver Office of Economic Development. A counselor at that office referred him to Coolerado, a Denver company that makes super energy efficient air conditioners. In September 2009, Coolerado hired Mr. Mingo to work on the manufacturing line. The training program administered by the Denver Office of Economic Development paid for bus passes, clothes and half of Mr. Mingo’s salary for 6 months. Those funds come from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. So far, the company has hired 10 people through this program and has been paid $31,000 through the Recovery Act.

Mr. Mingo says he loves the Recovery Act. “It got me back on my feet. It pays for my rent, my food and my basic needs,” he said. “If it hadn’t been for this, I’d be out on the street.”

Now, Mr. Mingo has an apartment and rides the bus to and from his job. He listens to old rock music on a walkman while he is assembling the parts for the air conditioners.

Mr. Mingo can’t say enough about how much he appreciates his job and the Recovery Act.
“It turned my life around. Now I can look forward to every day coming to work.”


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