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Love and Garage Doors - Part 1

Posted on Feb. 12, 2016

It’s the season of love and we love our distributors! Thi​s month, we’re sharing some of the stories of our Overhead Door Distributors who run their business as a couple or family. As many of these distributors know, working with family has its challenges but underneath it all is a bond that can’t be broken. We’re proud to be a part of family-owned businesses that make up an important part of our Overhead Door Community.

Overhead Door Company of Brunswick

The Walkers

Overhead Door of Brunswick - The WalkersGene and Susan Walker have owned the Overhead Door Company of Brunswick for 22 years. Gene was hired and trained at the age of 19 at the Overhead Door Company of Savannah and started back in the garage door business when he returned to his hometown of Brunswick, giving him 35 years of experience in the industry.​

One day, Gene attended a PTA meeting at a Brunswick school for his son, where Susan was introduced as a member of the Glynn County Board of Education. Gene struck up a conversation after the meeting and before they knew it, they were the only two left in the building. During this conversation, Gene learned that Susan had a background in bookkeeping, and asked if she would like to help him out at the company. She agreed and the two were married two years later.

When asked what it’s like to work with family as a distributor, Susan said, 

It can be challenging, but for the most part we enjoy working together. We try not to step into each other’s areas and we always discuss and make large decisions together. The most important thing is to respect each other’s boundaries and keep a sense of humor.
-Susan Walker

Working together and keeping a sense of humor appears to be working for the Walkers. The distributorship was recently featured in International Door & Operator Magazine as a top performing door dealer for their strategic planning, diversification and continued steps toward business efficiency and improvement.

While they continue to strive for improvements, their core focus remains the same. 

We always offer a quality door, because you are doing the customer a disservice by selling them anything else. We practice good, fundamental customer service, and we always do what we say we’ll do.
- Gene Walker


Overhead Door Company of Everett

The Attersons

The Attersons have been in the garage door business a long time. Steve’s father started the business 50 years ago, bringing Steve on at the age of 16. His future wife Heidi stumbled upon this family business when she needed her car’s stereo installed, not knowing she would later become an essential part of the office.​

One of her friends was a friend of the family and recommended that I could help her install it. I installed that stereo and we have been together ever since.
- Steve Atterson

The family tradition continued when their son, Stephen, graduated college and came to work at the distributorship as well.​

Steve considers his career as an Overhead Door distributor destiny. Even as a young boy, he would respond to the question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” with:

I’m going to be an Overhead Door man!

Working as a family is very special to the Attersons, and something they are most proud of.

Times have been good and times have been bad, but to make it through everything with your family still by your side brings you closer together.
- Steve Atterson

The Attersons see the changes with smart phone remote operation as one of the biggest trends hitting the garage door industry right now.


Overhead Door Company of Bellingham

The Johnsons

Overhead Door Company of Bellingham - The Johsons 

Since they are always there to support, encourage and believe in each other, the couple credits their family bond to much of their success over the years, including receiving the Lifetime Achievement Award and hitting the Million Dollar Club.

Working at Overhead Door has allowed us the opportunity to build relationships in the community and to invest back into the community through events and charities. It is an honor and privilege to represent the company at these events.
- Michelle Johson

The couple sees more modern looking residential garage doors and more sophisticated technology for operators as two of the biggest changing trends in their business.


Be sure to read Love and Garage Doors – Part 2 in the coming weeks, where we’ll feature three more Overhead Door families!​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​