TORRINGTON, WY — After years of medical school and training, most doctors would not stray from their profession to start a bakery. However, Ezdan Fluckiger did just that with The Bread Doctor Bakery.
The bakery’s journey began with Ezdan’s daughter, Eleanor, who was born with Down syndrome. When Eleanor began middle school, Ezdan began thinking about her future and the path she would take after high school. He wanted to create a job that was a little more her style and had family at its core.
“We weren’t keeping her from trying college or other advanced things,” Ezdan said. “But I had a feeling when she was in middle school that eventually she would end up at home or close to home. So, I started thinking about that.”
Eleanor’s outgoing personality and love of being around others led Ezdan to wonder if a career in baking, he already had a love for, might suit her. In 2013, Ezdan enrolled at the International School of Baking (ISB) to see if the passion he had for baking could turn into a business or if it should remain a hobby.
After attending baking school as a private student for one month in 2013, Ezdan opened a home bakery featuring artisan-style baked goods to test the market. When people began showing interest, he decided to open a retail bakery. Since then he has been back three times for short term sessions to learn more on specific topics of baking.
“I liked to cook and bake and so did my wife,” Ezdan said. “I thought if we’re going to do something for the next 30 years that Eleanor can work at, it ought to be something that I also enjoy.”
The Bread Doctor Bakery officially opened in 2015 and will celebrate its eighth anniversary in July.
Eleanor, who is now 25, works at the bakery full time. She has a space where she can do what she loves with people she loves.
Ezdan still practices medicine and has switched from his family practice to the emergency room so he can now work shifts at the hospital. His new schedule allows him to spend part of his time at the hospital helping save lives and part of his time baking with his daughter.
“I didn’t want to be practicing medicine for the rest of my life,” Ezdan said. “I felt like I needed something that could take me into retirement. This way, when I am done with medicine, I will continue baking and then, of course, we will also have a family business.”