Published on June 7, 2021 by Barron’s
After a 30-year career at Procter & Gamble, Francis Nelson Beebe was living his retirement dream—playing about 200 rounds of golf a year—before an epiphany.
“I was standing over a putt one day and I said, ‘I can’t do this for the rest of my life,’ ” the former logistics executive recalls.
For Beebe, who graduated from the Cordon Bleu culinary program after retiring from P&G, that has meant a second act as the baker and owner of Mr. Nelson’s Cookies. Five days a week, Beebe makes 24 batches of a dozen artisanal chocolate-chip cookies that he sells in packs of six or 12 over the internet or individually at farmer’s markets on weekends.
“I’m 73 years old, and I feel like I’m 45,” says Beebe, who bakes in Gold Canyon, Ariz., after his seven-year retirement. “I can’t wait to get up in the morning.”
The share of retirement-age Americans working has doubled since 1985, according to a study by investment firm United Income that examined federal data. Twenty percent of people 65 years or older either work or are looking for work.