Lee Scott became involved in her profession out of a love of serving others. She currently presides as chief operating officer of Arnold West Investments. Under its umbrella, and until its closure in 2021, she served as the general manager of The Village Station 1893 Restaurant, and presently acts as general manager of Arnold’s Restaurant, where she has been since 2015. In these roles, she is responsible for overseeing over 100 employees as well as staffing, quality control, marketing, payroll, scheduling, and ordering and inventory.
Ms. Scott has become a well-known figure in her small town and takes great pride in getting to know the people who come to her restaurants and helping the community grow. Being the “face” of this business really means something to her. Prior to her work in the restaurant industry, her love of serving started in the education system. She taught on many different levels of education and rose to become the president of a multi-county educational support group. She also spent some time in the medical field, being certified in health insurance billing and coding.
Attributing much of her success to her perseverance, love of learning, and hard work, Ms. Scott is always willing to improve and learn when she is confronted with something she doesn’t know. She has always loved people, serving and learning, and she enjoys being in a business where she meets people every day from whom she can learn. Standing out in her field for her drive to make a difference in the lives of others, she tries to live life to its fullest and to always share that with others. When people come into her restaurants, she goes out of her way to connect with them, even when she doesn’t know them from the community.
Ms. Scott cites one of the most important lessons she has learned over the course of her career as how to network. Learning how and where to make good connections is a crucial skill that can not only help you but help others as well.
Very involved in her community, Ms. Scott has given her support to a number of local groups. She is on the advisory board of the Givens Performing Arts Center at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke, having held multiple board positions through the years. Through her university connections, she has been able to help some of her former staff members and young people get scholarships and other college aid. Ms. Scott often is a guest speaker on professional development for a local high school, giving the students a real connection from education to the workforce, welcoming them to apply and obtain their “first job.” Students from high schools and college often come into the restaurant looking for part-time jobs and she is glad to be able to give young people a foothold and connection in her community.
Ms. Scott joined Kiwanis of Robeson-Lumberton in July of 2021 to keep connected with ways to serve the children of her county. She immediately accepted a seat on their board, where she hopes to continue to serve for years to come.
She also helped to found the largest Bike Night on Interstate-95 from Florida to Maine, which she cites as a major career highlight. This apex event was featured as the cover story in popular motorcycle magazine Full Throttle of The Carolinas.
Two moments of pride for Ms. Scott came after Hurricane Matthew and Hurricane Florence, in 2016 and 2018, respectively, had swept through the area. The interstate leading out of town was completely flooded and no one could really get in or out, but her restaurant had fuel and inventory, so she and a group of volunteers cooked food to take to people who were struggling, provided hot meals and supplies to anyone in need, and provided sleeping arrangements for the Cajun Navy Relief when they arrived to help provide aid. Ms. Scott would advise young and aspiring professionals that you should never get tired of doing the right thing, because there will always be a reward.
During the pandemic of 2022, without fail, Ms. Scott worked fervently to get anyone she knew the help they needed to succeed through this. Working closely with governmental services, not one of her staff members were without options, and was recognized in her hard work by the office of Sen. Phil Berger.
Ms. Scott would like to add that she could not do anything without her faith and the love and support from her partner, Arnold West, as well as her family and friends. As the years march on, she hopes to be able to conquer any challenge ahead with grace and integrity.