Growing up in a small town outside the big city, two brothers spent their days and nights exploring and playing in the wooded area behind their house. Matt and Jeff spent most of their days building forts and tree houses, content with getting lost in nature. Their tree forts were as classic as nailing pieces of wood to a tree just to get a cooler view.
Then life happened. They found themselves far from the forest with the only piece of wood around being their desks and pencils. When the brothers reunited after Jeff finished college and Matt quit his first job, they decided they wanted to get back to the woods. They wanted to recreate that same feeling of being brothers in the forest.
So, they decided they would put their skills together and create tree forts for adults. Spaces where people could go and reconnect with their younger self and see the world as they did when they were kids. So Matt and Jeff created The Canopy, a place for people to disconnect with the social character they’ve created, and reconnect with that child in the woods.
After graduating university with more questions than when he started, Jeff decided to look for programs that involved helping people. A few weeks after he graduated, his dad was also searching for a new profession that provided more purpose.
With enthusiasm and timing on their side, they started Alligood Energy, a sustainability company that focuses on home energy audits. Soon after, Matt joined knowing this was our chance to have the freedom to make some real change.
They both moved back home with their parents to help get the company off the ground, and Jeff soon realized that without any action, nothing was going to change. Starting a company was insanely hard and frustrating; there were countless times where they sat around the table and all debated whether to close it down or keep pushing on.
Matt began to experience the reality of his first job in NYC working for the interests of real estate developers. He quickly started to feel alienated from that child who grew up playing in the woods. A few years into this job experience he began to feel isolated and disconnected from himself and the natural world. The air wasn’t fresh and the noise was overwhelming. He knew deep down he needed to restructure his life from ground up and that was the path he began on.
He went through this period over the next few years where he followed a simple concept of going towards things that made him feel connected to his inner child and away from things that didn’t. It was a simple technique that began to work, and through it he discovered what made him feel good again. He realized that the things that made him feel better was everything he did as a kid in the woods with his brother. When he came out of this situation, Jeff was graduating from college and appeared at the right time in life for him.