Over 7 seasons, The VeryVera Show has seen many a partnership, ranging from large corporations like Hershey to entrepreneurs just striking out on a new venture. One thing I love above all else when starting a new partnership is learning the story of the company. Today, I want to share the story of La-Z-Boy Southeast.
In 1927, R. Byron Brown, Jr. was born in Yazoo City, Mississippi during the Great Depression. Byron followed his father, who worked in various sawmills, across the south. The family moved to where the work was, and such was the initiation for Byron. He learned first-hand how to keep his eyes on the horizon and capitalize upon a rising tide. Though he faced struggles of poverty and hunger, his life was an amazing journey. Byron ushered in a new and improved life for his family with his commitment to hard work, a positive mindset, a deep-seated faith, a desire for betterment, and the ability to embrace change.
In 1944, Byron attended Clemson College with a small inheritance his mother received. While at Clemson, he enlisted in the Navy and served his country in the Pacific Ocean theater of World War II. After the war, Byron was honorably discharged and returned to Clemson. He credits the genius and generosity of the G.I. Bill for allowing him to finish his formal education. While working in an Indiana sawmill, Byron met a University of Michigan forestry graduate who encouraged Byron to change his major from Civil Engineering at Clemson to Wood Technology at the University of Michigan. This decision forever altered the course of his future.
In 1950, Byron’s degree helped him earn a job with Williams Furniture in Sumter, SC. While living in Sumter, Byron met and married, the love of his life, Martha Eleanor Ryan. With the help of his wife, Byron was the founder and CEO of two successful businesses. First, he opened the first Ethan Allen Furniture Gallery in Columbia, SC. He served clients in the Midlands for more than 20 years, eventually expanding the business by opening a second location in Augusta, GA. In 1976, R. Byron Brown, Jr. founded La-Z-Boy Southeast when he opened a La-Z-Boy Showcase Shoppe in Columbia, SC. He established this business and gifted it to his children who have grown the business to eight locations across the Southeastern United States.
Today, the La-Z-Boy Southeast family continues to carry on this faithful offering. Building on La-Z-Boy’s reputation for excellent quality and customer service, La-Z-Boy Southeast also offers Furniture Academy, an online resource for southeastern customers looking to learn more about the services offered at their local La-Z-Boy store.
It’s been such a pleasure to partner with La-Z-Boy Southeast this season for two of our all-time favorite giveaways. We’ve given almost $5,000 in gift certificates to two lucky fans of The VeryVera Show. If you missed out, it’s still worth checking out your La-Z-Boy Southeast store to see what they have to offer! Tell ‘em that Vera sent you.