Courtney Davis took the helm of her father’s small furniture repair business to help it grow into a responsible, successful company.
In the 1970s, Bart and Kathleen Thibodeaux were dreaming about opening their own business and growing it into a successful company that could support the family they also dreamed of having. And in August 1978, both of those dreams came true: Bart’s Office Furniture Repairs opened for business, followed two weeks later by the birth of their first child, Courtney.
Bart and Kathleen worked hard to build a successful operation, with Bart sometimes working 18-hour days to make deadlines, and their dedication and sacrifice helped develop a reputation of quality and reliability for the business.
After many years, Bart developed a chronic illness requiring transplant surgery and lifelong medication to control debilitating side effects. And although he always expected to have a son who would want to take the torch, his wife and four daughters took over the business and are expanding it in new directions and to new heights.
Courtney Davis, Bart and Kathleen’s eldest daughter and CEO of the company, says the business—now called Bart’s Office Furniture—has grown to include inventory management, move management and furniture installation services for hospitals, hotels and offices. After analyzing the business, they discontinued furniture repairs, which ended up being more headache than revenue-driver.
Davis says that the independence to make her own decisions about her future and the company is the best part of being a small business owner, while knowing that her 20 full-time employees are counting on her and the company’s success is the most difficult thing.
“I want to make sure they are able to take care of their families,” she says.
This is where NFIB provides crucial support.
“I choose to support NFIB because it looks out for small business owners like myself,” Davis says. “I know that someone is looking out for our best interest. Certain legislation can cripple small business owners, and I feel secure in the fact that NFIB is watching and advising our legislators on these issues.”