In this episode of The Build Guild Podcast, the guys have the privilege of interviewing John Godwin of the wildly popular A&E tv show Duck Dynasty. Godwin is part of the Duck Commander Family.
Godwin grew up in the heart of Louisiana and had childhood ties to the Robertson family after participating in a duck calling contest where Phil Robertson was a judge. As he grew up, Godwin recalls going down the wrong path and feeling like he needed to straighten up his act, but struggled to do so until Phil convinced him to follow Jesus. Godwin quickly recognized a need in his life, and chose to follow the Savior Phil talked about so easily and with such conviction.
Godwin’s life has always centered on the outdoors, cultivating a love for hunting and fishing from an early age. He began working for Duck Commander in 2002 until the present. He is one of two members of the Duck Commander crew who is not a member of the Robertson family, and has recently launched Fin Commander, the fishing branch of Duck Commander. Ascribing to the ideology of “Don’t sell it till you’d hunt with it,” the Duck Commander brand emerged as a necessity for any outdoorsman. As Duck Commander’s popularity grew, the market for television appearances grew, with the team gearing up for hunting shows or outdoor channels. When the Duck Commander crew was initially approached by A&E, however, the show was a bit different from what they had in mind. A&E wanted Duck Dynasty to focus on a successful business that centered on three things: God, family, and ducks.
With over 130 episodes spanning 11 seasons, the show was wildly successful. Originally the crew would film after business hours, but as the show became more popular, filming during business hours became necessary. One week’s worth of work is the shop was roughly an episode, and Godwin was a part of it all, starring in over a hundred episodes.
Godwin’s story is an example of finding a vocation, honing a craft, and, better yet, finding a family along the way. Godwin’s life has been changed tremendously by the influence of Phil and the Robertsons.
In this episode, The Build Guild talks with John about faith, family, and fame. From foot tattoos, wild Saturday nights, and NASCAR, this episode is an example of family and diversity within the making community that can lead to lasting friendships and change lives for the better.
Thank you for listening, and if you wanted to check out the duck call John mentions in the show, check below:
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Our guest host for Episode Five is Jo Ellis, the Founder and Director of Make.Do. Graduating from Harding with a degree in interior design and her MBA, Jo wasn’t exactly sure what she wanted to do after her time at Harding was over. While spending three years in Ireland as a missionary, Jo was a camp counselor during the summer. After being a counselor for a group of girls who challenged her, she offered to let the girls visit her in Dublin, not really believing they’d accept. They did. With three teenage girls in her house and unsure of what to do to keep them occupied, Jo set the girls on a task that has forever changed her own life: make pillowcases.
Jo watched the girls create something that was uniquely theirs, their struggle with the creative process, and the impact the affirmation they received had on the girls. Believing that creativity is a fundamental aspect of who God is and how it is a restorative process where we find our identity, integrity, and value, Jo realized this mission could become something truly incredible. At times, Jo faced immense challenges and self-doubt, and started actually running a variation of Make.Do. out of the back of her car, loading and unloading ten sewing machines at whatever venue she was in that night.
Eventually, Jo returned to Searcy and began to truly realize the mission she had dreamed of. Make.Do.’s purpose and goal are to create something while connecting to others within the community. The creating is the “Make” aspect of Make.Do., and the connections formed are the “Do.”. Jo wants those in the community who attend classes to enjoy the experience of creating something they can be proud of while working through the creative process and connecting with others through this experience of creating together. Although Make.Do. isn’t necessarily an activity for only women, Jo views it as an incredible outlet for women in the church to lead and display their talents in a validating and encouraging environment.
This is Jo’s first year working full-time for Make.Do., and although she has her own artistic talents and abilities, she often will bring others in to teach a variety of classes. Make.Do.’s business model is inclusive and welcomes everyone, with suggested prices for those who can afford it and allowing those who can’t pay to participate anyway.
The first female guest host on the show, Jo is an incredible example of using talents to honor God while also bettering her community along the way. Make.Do.’s logo, the lemon, is a constant reminder that if life gives us lemons to make lemonade, and maybe to “Be Createfull” along the way.
To help sponsor Make.Do.’s Collaboration with the White County Child Safety Center at Camp Createfull coming up on June 28th, or to donate to Make.Do.’s mission, donations can be sent here:
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Next episode we have an exciting guest host, so come back and join us!
Thank you for listening and all of your support!
In this episode of the Build Guild Podcast, Mark Bates, a local carpenter who has spent the last thirteen years operating his own business. Mark’s clientele comes from a mix of referrals from Lowe’s™ and word-of-mouth around the community. Mark began working in the contracting industry working as an installer for Lowe’s™, and then became an installer himself. New to social media, Mark is learning how to advertise his business by showcasing his projects for both his business and his own home.
Similar to Coty’s family, Mark’s family is involved in the foster care system. Recognizing the juggernaut of emotions surrounding a foster child’s first day in his or her new home, Mark constructed a castle at the front of his house to make that difficult first day a little easier. The second floor of his home contains a hidden passage, spiral staircase and hidden room to add a whimsical touch to his children’s childhood.
Mark’s perspective is completely unique from the other makers of the Build Guild podcast. Most notably, Mark’s tools differ from the fine woodworking tools the other Build Guild makers utilize in their daily business. As a general contractor, Mark’s tool investments occur often and are focused on transportation and durability, whereas Ben, Brian, and Coty all see their tools as lasting investments that can (hopefully) last for years before being passed on to novice makers.
Mark is an incredible example of how making isn’t limited to fine woodworking but is an all-encompassing field with room for anyone with an idea or just a little bit of whimsy. His 9-5 work is impeccable, but after hours he’s created an environment where his children have a place to make their daydreams a reality.
Episode 4 brings us up to speed with Coty’s journey in the Small Business Revolution™, Brian’s current (secret) projects he’s spending the summer on, and Ben’s hair-brained YouTube ideas for Mark’s house.
Mark and Coty are both in need of employees for their businesses, and a resume with any relevant experience can be emailed to Markbatescontracting@gmail.com and Arganicwoodwork@gmail.com, respectively.
Most Underrated Piece of Equipment in the Shop:
Mark: Oscillating Tool from Dewalt
⅜ Milwaukee Ratchet
Coty: TiteBond Glue Brush
(Ben’s Suggestion) : https://amzn.to/2EHvJkO
Black and Decker Jig Saw
Value Selection: https://amzn.to/2Z3lDTd
Skil Jig Saw:
Value Selection: https://amzn.to/2MehZUM
Wen Air Filtration Systems:
Saw Blade Ben’s using in his Sawstop:
Send us all your beef jerky:
What’s Coming Up Next:
Mark’s Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/markbatescontracting/
For Episode 5, we will have Jo Ellis from Make.Do. in Searcy. Check out her Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/makedocreate/, and her website at http://makedocreate.org
It’s all about family for Peter Romano. Growing up in Delaware, Peter’s father and mother operated a successful masonry business. Peter’s father ran the business ends and contracts, and his mother kept the books. At its peak, Romano’s Masonry had around sixty employees. Today, the business has shifted its business model to include subcontracting but manages to maintain its identity.
Peter left Delaware to attend Harding University in Searcy, Arkansas. After meeting his wife at Harding, Peter and his wife moved to Colorado for a few years before Peter returned to the family business. Working at Romano’s Masonry for a few years expanded the knowledge Peter had gained through his childhood. However, after returning to Delaware, Peter felt God calling him to raise a family elsewhere. Peter and his family left Delaware to move back to Searcy with little planning and a whole lotta faith. He had no job secured, no leads on any open positions, and eventually he and his family were able to move into an old family home. The home had been in his wife’s family since the 1940s and was in desperate need of renovations. Determined to make the best of life in Searcy, Peter began teaching high school history, became a volunteer fireman, attending graduate school for his master’s degree in counseling, and renovating the family home. When Peter was unsure about how to properly renovate his home, he often turned to YouTube to help guide him along.
This week’s guest host talks shop with The Build Guild about being raised by parents who owned a successful business, how YouTube has evolved the world of making, and even how each of the guys asked their girlfriend’s dad for permission to marry his daughter.
5 HP Sawstop
1.75 HP Sawstop
Episode Two: Look Ma, I’m on TV
What is winning $75,000 and being featured on a reality television series like? For Coty Skinner, that dream became a reality in March of 2019 when his company, ARganic Woodworking, LLC, was chosen as one of the six contestants for the Hulu series, “Small Business Revolution,” sponsored by the highly respected marketing firm, Deluxe.
Coty hadn’t always dreamed of being a maker, though. Upon graduation from a high school in central Arkansas, Coty enlisted with the United States Army. After serving in the Army for ten years, Coty pursued a career in HVAC, and then felt God calling him into ministry. After having two daughters of their own, ages 5 and 13, Coty and his wife began a new challenging and impactful ministry of their own: fostering.
Being a foster parent is full of challenges and hurdles, and very quickly Coty realized a glaring obstacle: the family dining table was too small. Remembering his own teenage years and the impact conversations made at the family table had on him, he realized he needed to build a table with enough room for his family and the children they fostered. Driven by a passion for ministering to others and making sure everyone has a seat at the table, ARganic Woodworking was born. Working out of his garage, for every three tables Coty made, he donated one to a foster family in need of a bigger table. As his business has grown, Coty wants to move from making tables to creating livelihoods for teens aging out of the foster system by teaching them a trade.
“The more you do, the more you learn it.”
ARganic Woodworking became Coty’s full-time business this year, and several of his projects garnered local attention, specifically tables he made for a local coffee shop and creperie, Savor + Sip. His wife encouraged him to apply for the Small Business Revolution, a Hulu series sponsored by Deluxe with hosts Amanda Brinkman and Ty Pennington. Applying on the last day, with very little optimism that his company would be chosen, ARganic Woodworking was selected as one of six winners on the show.
Coty’s story and business are inspiring, humbling, and reminds us that no matter where you are in your making journey, in this community, you always have a seat at the table.
Thank you for listening to Week 2! If you enjoyed the podcast, please leave a rating and review!
Make sure to follow us on Instagram- https://www.instagram.com/thebuildguildpodcast/
Also, check out Coty’s Wish List items from the Small Business Revolution show, and any other tools we mentioned today!
The Saw Stop Product Link: Commercial 5HP Saw Stop
Powermatic Drum Sander:
Grizzly 17 Band Saw
Bosch Miter Saw Glide and Rolling Stand
KPEX from Festool
Dewalt Flex-Volt Miter Saw
Festool CT-36 Auto-Clean
Episode One: Meeting the Makers
From social media, the Small Business Revolution™, and side hustles, three makers from different backgrounds have all settled into a small central Arkansas town. Driven by their love for making, community, and connection, Ben, Brian, and Coty invite you to take an inside look into the making world: from stealing Wal-Mart Wi-Fi to for Instagram posts to selling pencil bowls to grandma.
Each of these makers bring a variety of skills into their niche of the market into the making community. The Build Guild is just evidence that everyone brings something to the table, and if you’re Coty, you just might bring the table itself.
Who are the Makers?
Brian Hickey is a native Arkansan who teaches art at a local elementary school. Making is his side hustle, and he devotes most of his summer breaks to it. Brian’s specialties are wood signs, art prints, and paintings. Brian currently has his shop set up in his garage and is breaking even in his business as he amasses tools and other necessities. Brian’s social media presence and content is a direct reflection of the intentionality he exemplifies in his career and craft, with him walking to Wal-Mart each day to make a post to Instagram.
Coty Skinner is a native Arkansan who, after serving in the United States military, decided to return home and put down roots. He was one of six contestants chosen for season four of Hulu and Deluxe’s Small Business Revolution and hopes to put the expert advice and consultations he received from the show into practice in his business. Coty is the only full-time maker on the podcast, and he is currently working out of his own garage. Being featured on the show will provide Coty with incredible opportunities for growth, enhancement, and business savvy tactics to turn profits.
Ben Myers decided to leave Pennsylvania to come to college and never looked back. Ben is a hybrid of classic woodworking in the modern era. From woodturning to turning profits on digital CNC files, Ben has cornered his market, and brings insight on the delights and downfalls of social media, viral videos, and how that translates into business.
The Build Guild was created to demonstrate how three normal, average, and everyday dads are cornering their market while balancing family, fatherhood, and making. The show addresses a variety of topics from where customers come from, when your side hustle finally starts to feel like a business, to the hardships of pricing, and everything in between.
If you’ve listened already, feel free to leave a review and comment!
We hope you liked the first episode! Thanks for listening!
-The Build Guild