A Kentucky State University alumnus has found his niche in business and bourbon.

Michael Adams Jr., class of 2008, is currently a commercial banking relationship manager with Forcht Bank.

After graduation, Adams worked in sales for Kraft Foods in Toledo and Detroit. Adams later had an opportunity to come back to Kentucky for a business banking position with PNC Bank, so he took it.

“I was with PNC for about six years before taking a promotion with Forcht Bank as a commercial lender,” Adams said.

Adams said he always wanted to own a business, but he wasn’t sure exactly what that would look like.

“The idea of working with businesses drew me to banking, with hopes that the exposure to numerous industries would help me find my calling,” Adams said. “So far it has opened my eyes to many opportunities and possibilities that will serve me well in the near future.”

Adams is also highly involved in the community as a board member of community and business non-profit organizations such as the Kentucky Black Bourbon Guild Inc. (KBBG) and the Lexington Bluegrass Area Minority Business Expo.

“I was asked to help start KBBG by a business man who wanted to identify and acknowledge the African American/slave history in whiskey,” Adams said. “Being a minority bourbon enthusiast and member of a separate bourbon society, I knew this was right up my alley. After much research, conversations and planning, we decided to form KBBG to bridge the social and economic gaps between minorities and bourbon.”

Adams recalled several great memories from his time on the Hill, including when his sister, A’ynna Parr, enrolled as a freshman at Kentucky State; as well as friendships and memories he created as a football player and member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Inc.

“There isn’t a day in which I don’t reminisce about sports games, Bell Gym parties, Young Hall escapades, Homecoming activities and influential faculty and staff,” Adams said.

Adams said he is truly indebted to people like Dr. Mary Sias, Ron Banks, Kim Jones, William Graham, Dr. Lucian Yates III, Don Offutt, Leslie Thomas and many others who were at Kentucky State during his time there.

The most important lesson Adams learned on the Hill, he said, is to serve.

“Through mentorship programs, Habitat for Humanity builds, and community service organizations, Kentucky State taught me the value of lifting others up as I climb the ladder of success,” Adams said.

Finally, Adams encouraged current and future Thorobreds to master their craft.

“The world is run through mastery,” Adams said.