Adam Mark Smith was earning $200,000 a year and had more than $1 million stock options as CFO of Vante, a medical device company in Arizona. One day he decided to express his disdain for the fast-food chain Chick-fil-A (for its anti-gay marriage stance) to a young woman working the drive-thru window. (He ordered only a free cup of water, which she delivered with a smile.) He videotaped the exchange on his phone and posted it on social media. It went viral. When the CEO of his company saw it, he suggested to Smith that he resign.
Smith lost everything – his job, his stock options and his house. The father of four is still in search of a job, and says he and his family are living on food stamps. But now things are looking brighter. He’s written a memoir called “A Million Dollar Cup of Water: Discovering the Wealth in Authenticity.” He has apologized to the young woman he berated in the video and she accepted. She said, “I feel sorry for him and his family, and for everything that has happened to him since.”