Frequently, we're asked about the key to our success. Really, it's a combination of factors but it boils down to this: We go toe-to-toe with big box stores to give you not only the best prices and selection, but also the gold standard in customer care. After all, selection and cost amount to very little without the knowledge and expertise to make the most of them.
Meet Our Staff
John Morton, Owner and CEO
Pam Morton, Owner and CEO
Adam Wells, President
Nealy Wells, CFO
Matt Wells, VP
Rodney Persons, VP
Eddie Ausburn, Director of Retail Operations
Amy Quimby, Stuttgart Office Manager
Born in Higden, Arkansas in January 1956, John Morton developed a strong work ethic and entrepreneurial spirit at an early age. When he was just 15 years old, Morton began working after school for F.L. Davis’s lumberyard in Greers Ferry. Davis was so impressed with Morton that he decided to take the young man under his wing and become his mentor. Eventually, this employer-employee relationship grew into one that more closely resembled family. Over the next several years, Morton gained valuable knowledge about the inner workings of a lumber company, from the ground up.
When Morton was just 19 years old, Davis approached him about moving to Stuttgart to open a new Davis Lumber Company location. While he was initially reluctant, Morton found the idea of managing his own store enticing. Davis promised Morton that, one day, he could have the opportunity to purchase the store from him. That sealed the deal and the two men shook hands on the new venture.
In the beginning, Morton did everything—from stocking the shelves to selling at the counter—he even loaded the delivery truck and made deliveries every afternoon! Not surprisingly, within a few years, the Stuttgart store was Davis’s most profitable location.
By the mid-1980s, Morton was ready to take Davis up on his offer and purchase the Stuttgart store. There was only one problem: Morton could not come up with the capital to make it happen. Nevertheless, like so many young entrepreneurs, Morton was determined. He and his wife, Pam (Ausbrooks) Morton, determined they could borrow enough money to start a restaurant, which could hopefully generate enough revenue to purchase the Davis Lumber Company store.
The Mortons drove all the way to Augusta, Georgia for a meeting that would ultimately result in them being awarded a Western Sizzlin’ franchise in Stuttgart. Located just down the street from the lumber company, their Western Sizzlin’ location was an instant success. Pam worked at the restaurant while John worked all day at Davis Lumber Company. At night, John would join Pam at the restaurant to cook steaks. They closed the restaurant together each night and awoke the next morning to do it all over again. After several long years of running two successful businesses, the Mortons sold the Western Sizzlin’, took the profits to Davis, and shook on a deal that had been 14 years in the making. John Morton was finally the proud owner of a lumber company.
The Mortons maintained their long hours during the 1990s in order to focus on growing their Davis Lumber Company store. Business was booming and by the 2000s, the Mortons had their sights set on central Arkansas as a new market. Even a global economic recession could not stop John Morton—he was determined to open the new store! Rebranded as Lumber One Home Center, the company opened its Mayflower location in November 2008. Strategically located between the bustling epicenters of Little Rock and Conway, the Mayflower location swiftly exceeded Morton’s expectations. Morton’s determination to offer the best prices coupled with unsurpassed customer service, meant he went from being the ‘new kid in town’ to having the fastest-growing building material company in Arkansas.
Today & Tomorrow
After almost 50 years in the lumber business, John Morton’s vision for his company continues to expand: A new distribution and warehousing facility located in southwest Little Rock is set to become fully operational in the fall of 2020. With a lumberyard almost three times larger than the one in Mayflower, the distribution center will provide infrastructure for continued growth, decades to come. Additionally, Morton has purchased the former Sam’s Club building (also known as the “Metroplex”) located at I-430 and Col. Glenn Road, which will become the company’s third retail location, Lumber One Home Center – Little Rock. Set to open in mid-2021, the 108,000 sqft. store will feature a state-of-the art design center, drive-through lumber yard, and an impressive selection of retail hardware products—and it goes without saying that it will offer the best prices around.
The story of Lumber One Home Center is the story of John Morton’s passion for the lumber business and his obsessive dedication to be the best. He and Pam have made it their lives’ work and their legacy of hard work and entrepreneurialism is being carried on by the next generation. John remains chief executive officer and his daughter, Nealy, serves as chief financial officer. Her husband, Adam Wells, became the company’s president in 2017 and Adam’s brother, Matt Wells, is a vice president. Rodney Persons, Morton’s right-hand man for more than 40 years, serves as co-vice president. Using their combined experience and skills, these individuals work together to continue Morton’s legacy and show customers why Lumber One Home Center is the best in the business.