Christian Broadcasting Network


David Darg


The Duck Commander Family


  • Author of The Duck Commander Family
  • CEO of the Duck Commander business
  • Co-owner with his wife Buck Commander producing products for deer hunters


Willie Robertson

By Suzanne O'Keeffe-700 Club Interactive

Together Willie and his wife Korie take the reader to a "behind-the-scenes" view of how a family went from financial hardships, to starting a business in the living room and then landing an A&E hit show called "Duck Dynasty." Each chapter of the book is titled with a food, a scripture with a recipe at the end displaying the importance of their time spent around the family dinner table. Those times began a lifetime of sharing food, cares and stories where all were welcomed. Willie describes that he and his brothers learned at a young age that adults were to be respected. His parents, through their hospitality extended toward others, taught Willie not be self-centered and if you provided people with good food and plenty of it, they were often willing to help out whenever needed. Even to this day time around the family table is still valued; sharing everything from "the last stupid decision made", to starting a business and announcing an engagement.

Willie's parents were not wealthy by any means. His father had earned a B.A. and M.A. from Louisiana State but preferred being in the bayou duck hunting and drinking. One evening when he returned home in a drunken state, Willie's father forced Willie, his siblings and mother to leave. He wanted to be on his own. It was not for long because in just a few months, Phil returned to his wife and family. He started studying the Bible, received Christ and the past life of instability began to change.

There is a chapter titled "Fried Catfish," in which Korie shares that she lived in a subdivision and attended a private school, displaying some of the differences between the two families. However, the common thread between the two was the ability to start successful businesses from the ground up. Her father and grandfather started SuperSaver Wholesale Warehouse Club with twenty-four stores but after a call from Sam Walton they were sold and became Sam's Club locations. They began Howard Publishing which was later sold to Simon & Schuster. Her point is to show that she comes from a family with a mind for business. God and faith was a security Korie was raised with as well and says that her family's success (then and now) would be of no matter if they did not have their foundation in the Lord. Even though there were financial differences between the two families as Korie and Willie were growing up, they both were taught to serve others, provide for those in need and help people "get back on their feet" and "the world didn't revolve around us."

Willie had a creative mind to make money as early as kindergarten. He sold candy until he was found out by the principal but that did not deter him as he turned to selling pencils. When he was a little older, he learned the art of sales at the fish market and bartering for the best price of the fish he caught. The skills came in handy when he took the company that his father started in their living room and turned "Duck Commander" into a profitable organization.

The company was born when Willie's father, Phil, was working on manufactured duck calls and was told," weren't calling those ducks...You were commanding them." Soon a production line was formed with family involved from the start and still run by family today. Willie started out sweeping out the shop and staining the wooden calls and then sanding them. The humble beginnings in their home soon took off as Willie writes his father had a dream with vision and remained focus. Citing instances where the road was not always smooth and his mom worried that they could lose it all, he is quick to point out the Lord never failed and met them every time there was something needed. He acknowledges that any success they experienced then and now has always been "from above." Willie states with confidence that it is necessary to keep an excellent work ethic, and not be afraid to fail or pick yourself and up keep going when you find yourself on the ground. God is with them in the good and the bad.

From two other shows, "Duck Commander" and "Buck Commander" ( Willie being the executive producer of both), came the new A&E reality series called "Duck Dynasty" that centers on Willie, his brothers Jase and Jeptha, an Uncle Si, and Phil, as well as their wives. The men all sport long beards, wear camos and go about their way living in the Bayou, running their business and pulling pranks. Don't be fooled by their outrageous behavior or their totally unpredictable personalities. They stand hard and fast by their statement of faith. A&E has promoted them as "Money, Family, Ducks" but not wanting to be misrepresented they have taken those posters and written "faith" over the word "money." His brother has said that it can be difficult dealing with Hollywood when your heart is to declare the truth of Jesus. They have been beeped in two episodes to present them as swearing which they quickly complained explaining that is not part of their vocabulary. Then, there is the challenge they face when at the end of the televised prayer, "in Jesus Name" is removed. They don't give up as in several episodes their faith is revealed showing: 1. Si always carries several things when he travels and one being the Bible; 2. In another show Willie's mom, Kay, explained to her husband that to take care of grandchildren is the "Christian duty." 3. In still another Phil is shown in a chair with his Bible on his lap preparing a message on the fear of the Lord and loving your neighbor.

Willie concludes his book sharing that it is faith that sets them apart; it really is about the Lord. Forgiveness, seeing needs of others first, appreciating the fact they get to see family every day at work and having fun all contribute to the success of the show and their lives. His advice is to have some laughs, take time to enjoy your family and trust God. "Sit down to a good meal, turn off your cell phone, respect your elders, and, of course, get out in the woods and enjoy some good ol'frog legs. That's the Robertson way!"

Willie and his wife Korie live in West Monroe, LA with their five children where you will find him outside on his tractor pursuing his next "BUCKAHOLIC" idea that will keep them at the top! "..But if the fame and fortune that we've enjoyed through Duck Commander were all gone tomorrow, I would still stay the same thing: God is good."