Teacher wins start-up fitness center franchise

Noble-Jones with her 8-year-old son who says he wants to manage a kids fitness portion of the health center / Sarah Bleau

One teacher thought she was going to an assembly about school nutrition, but instead received the surprise of her life.

Charlice Noble-Jones won her own Snap Fitness franchise to start up in Albany. The prize is worth $250,000 and includes the building, equipment, site selection, initial rent and working capital to get her started.

"I'm shocked, I'm excited, I'm so extremely happy," says Noble-Jones, fourth grade social studies teacher at Lamar Reese Magnet School of the Arts. "I really thought this was about school nutrition week. I just learned that everyone in the school knew about this and they did a great job of hiding it."

Noble-Jones says she's excited about the opportunity after dealing with adversities such as surviving in the World Trade Center during September 11th and seeing her husband pass away from cancer in 2003.

"Things have happened in my life like the other shoe has fallen but this has such a positive impact I believe that I'm about to live the life I was born to live," says Noble-Jones.

Noble-Jones says her 8-year-old son is already asking when their fitness center is going to open. She says he has already been looking at real estate and expressed interest in managing a children's fitness facility within the 24-7 Snap Fitness center.

More than 2,000 entries were submitted in the nationwide Snap Fitness contest.

Noble-Jones says her recent weight loss sparked her interest in health and fitness.