Willie and Korie Robertson sat down with CBN.com for an Interactive interview with Pat Robertson’s son Gordon Robertson for some insights on the family dynasty.
Korie Robertson fell in love with her husband Willie, long before he was ever old enough to grow a beard. According to Korie, she loved Willie when she was in third grade.
They met at church camp. Willie was a cute little boy with dimples who, when he asked Korie to be his girl on a moonlight hike, she said yes. They have been together ever since.
Korie Howard Robertson wasn’t born into humble beginnings like her husband was. She is the granddaughter of Alton Hardy Howard. You might say he invented the “big box” store. In 1959 their discount store was founded. By 1978, they were a publicly traded chain with 78 stores in ten states.
So Korie grew up with business talk around her dinner table. She’s always had an interest in business, you might say it’s in her blood. However, she and Willie make a great team. The proof is played out for millions of viewer each week on Duck Dynasty..
For the couple, their business enterprise had its beginning with the invention of a duck call by Willie’s father, Phil Robertson.
When Willie was growing up, his dad was a commercial fisherman with the dream of one day selling a million dollars worth of duck calls. At that time, the Robertsons were poor by most people’s standards.
Although Phil Robertson is, and was, a college educated man with a teaching degree, he kept his family fed by hunting and fishing. The entire family worked on the duck call business.
Thirty years after Phil started his duck call business, the Duck Commander, it started to decline. That’s when Willie and Korie came on board. They brought in new energy, and a fresh business sense.
“The Lord had to have His hand in it, because we did everything wrong, from a business sense.” Willie told CBN. “But He blessed us, and it’s good to see it pay off in this way.”
The road was long and hard, but God always had their back according to Willie. One time in particular they thought that they wouldn’t have enough money to make it–it was over for Duck Commander. Then a check came in from Japan.
They never had a sale in Japan before, or since.
When Willie took over, he knew how bad it was. But, he kept the faith, and even held onto his paycheck for several months–just hoping everything would work out.
Willie, who employed his family, would rather not take a check than lay his family members off. They were all in it together. Now they are reaping the benefits together.