Duck Dynasty came to be an unexpected hit once it first appeared ~ above A&E in 2012, but the household behind the present was to run their empire long before the cameras started rolling. The company featured ~ above the renowned reality show, Duck Commander, was founded by the Robertson family method back in 1972 — 40 years before A&E started telling your story. The business is nothing if not a family-centric one, through patriarch Phil Robertson heading up the agency with his wife and also children. One of the most prominent of those youngsters is 47-year-old Willie Robertson, that was made CEO that Duck Commander.

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Before the landing the illustrious title and also prior to the success of Duck Dynasty, Willie led a different lifestyle. Here"s what Willie Robertson to be doing prior to the Duck Dynasty fame.

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Willie met his mam Korie (née Howard) at the church camp Ch-Yo-Ca as soon as he was in the fourth grade. The couple married in January 1992, as soon as Willie was only a year out of high school. The pair attended Harding university together, where Willie studied business. He graduated from the University of Louisiana in ~ Monroe (formerly known as Northeast Louisiana University) in 1995. 

Before Duck Dynasty, Willie and Korie had three children: john Luke, Bella, and also Sadie Robertson. They promoted a Taiwanese exchange student, Rebecca, that has since become part of the family, and also have additionally got two adopted sons, Willie Jr. And also Rowdy, the last of whom was adopted during the show"s run.

Willie was exposed come his family"s Duck Commander service his entire life, however he decided to work-related a typical straight-out-of-college job in his 20s. Rather of diving straight into the family business, Willie spent some time working as a counselor at a church camp, i m sorry is whereby he picked up his hand-operated experience in business. He gained additional experience as soon as he made decision to open another company, Buck Commander, in 2006. While Duck Commander focuses on duck hunting, Willie"s Buck command brand concentrates on deer hunting — another of his passions. The firm sells hunting DVDs and gear, and has showed up on the the end Channel thanks to Willie"s company acumen.

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Willie Robertson was a huge part that the factor that Duck Dynasty even became a point in the very first place, as he offered his organization experience and also his education from Harding University and the University that Louisiana in ~ Monroe to construct Duck Commander right into a massive service worth countless dollars. Once Willie dove into the family members biz head first, he also decided to push the agency into the to chat industry, follow to The brand-new York Times.

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"I had the ability to watch the family organization from afar," Willie stated of his time away from Duck Commander to run Buck Commander. "I had the ability to come in through a most energy and a vision for cultivation it also bigger."

When he started working at Duck Commander, Willie choose up top top the fact that while his father, Phil Robertson, had been able to develop a an excellent business native the floor up, he had actually "pretty lot run the end of ideas." that added, "He didn"t know just how to take it it come the next level, and also it can have started a downward slide, favor a many of family members businesses do." with Willie"s insight, Duck Commander ended up being much, much much more than just a household business. 

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Speaking to Sports Spectrum TV, Willie described how his family members was discovered and how they became so successful as the world behind Duck Dynasty. Watching his family members connect with one another while farming their company, Willie witnessed them much more as a cast of characters than as his relatives, and realized that their story could work on television. In spite of the service being an extremely heavily focused on hunting, he want the present to appeal come women and also children as well, therefore instead focused Duck Dynasty on the family unit and also how they activate the business and also their personal lives together.

It took part convincing from Willie to get the household on board v the plan. His father was the many resistant that the lot, stating that he to be "already as renowned as the come be." once the family was top top board, Willie had actually to go around finding a network that would certainly buy right into his vision the the show. That was simple decision because that Willie as soon as A&E come knocking. The felt the the network had actually the right family values, and would respect the Robertsons" worths in your taping that the show. Two pilot episodes of Duck Dynasty later, and the rest was history.