Celebrity Then And Now
Posted by Jake Frost
Celebrity Then And Now
Publication: Stanton Daily. Posted by Jake Frost
Duck Dynasty and the COO of Duck Commander
Currently Known For:
COO of Duck Commander, Businessman, and Television Personality
2012 - Present
August 16, 1969
“When you don’t know what you’re doing, it’s best to do it quickly.” Rising to fame alongside Phil and Miss Kay, Uncle Si, Willie, and Jep, Jase Robertson is living the life that redneck dreams are made of thanks to his family’s venture into reality television in 2012 when they took the world by storm on Duck Dynasty. An avid outdoorsman and a self-proclaimed “professional” duck hunter, Jase spent over 11 seasons on the show where he shared a glimpse into his life as the COO of Duck Commander, his wild antics with his brothers, and his life at home with his wife, Missy, and their three children. With Duck Dynasty ending in 2017, we can’t help but wonder what’s next for the 48-year-old reality television star and businessman who’s found an incredible following on social media that’s certain to keep him in the spotlight for years to come.
Named after his infamous uncle Silas Robertson, Jase Silas Robertson came into the world on August 16, 1969 in Bernice, Louisiana as the second of four boys born to Phil and Marsha Kay Robertson. But, to know Jase’s story we must first learn more about Phil and the birth of the Duck Commander… As a star athlete at Louisiana Tech University, Phil had the chance to play professional football but gave up a spot in the NFL alongside his longtime friend and teammate Terry Bradshaw to stay in Louisiana where he earned his master’s degree in education and taught for a few years before becoming a commercial fisherman and then a bar owner. Accustomed to partying hard, Phil’s marriage to Kay became strained in the late 1970s when he exchanged his wild nights for another passion, duck hunting. By then, he’d spent years searching for the perfect duck call when he took matters into his own hands and invented the first Duck Commander call in 1972. Patenting the product and opening the Duck Commander Company in 1973, the Robertson duck dynasty was born.
Although Jase was still a kid when his dad’s business picked up steam, being the Duck Commander’s son started to rub off on him as his own interest in hunting blossomed. By the time he was eight years old, he was well on his way to becoming an avid outdoorsman and spent as much time in the woods as his Louisiana elementary school (and the state law) would allow. As soon as he was old enough, he joined his dad, his Uncle Si, and his brothers at the family business as he finished up his four years at West Monroe High School where, believe it or not, he only went on a date with a girl named Melissa (the future Mrs. Jase Robertson) to make his ex-girlfriend jealous. Falling in love and later getting engaged, Jase and Missy tied the knot in 1990 as they settled down among the wild Robertson clan.
Continuing to work in the family business, Jase learned the ins and outs of Duck Commander and was more than ready to step up when his younger brother, Willie, graduated from NE Louisiana University and took over as CEO of Duck Commander. Jase took the lead as Chief Operating Officer as Willie expanded the company into a multimillion dollar enterprise. Of course, by then, Jase and the rest of the Robertson men were well known in the area for their signature beards, their love of all-things camo, and their Christian faith.
“My dad has always been a real blunt, simple person, and he always thought people judging a person by external appearances was just laughable,” Jase said. “So, to go against that you have to be pretty self-confident, and my dad is, he’s comfortable in his own skin. So, that’s where the beard comes from. He’d say, ‘Number one, you’re wasting your time. Number two, God made you for a reason to have hair on your face.’ He used to always say, ‘God made women to have smooth faces’ until he did a conference in Arkansas and then joked that he had to amend that by saying, ‘God made most women to have smooth faces.’”
All joking aside, Jase and his brothers grew out their beards not only as a testament to their father and their faith but because of the warmth beards provided during hunting season. Little did they know that their beards would become their trademark after A&E came calling and invited the family to star in their own reality series called Duck Dynasty. Initially, everyone was on board except Jase who worried that the family was far too calm to ever make it in the reality television industry. “I was one of the ones who said the reality show would never work,” he admitted. “We were in the hunting world. I had this perception of reality shows that you had to have all this friction and fits of rage and four-letter words… We’re pretty calm compared to that. We’ve got some crazy characters in our family, but I didn’t think people would want to see that.”
As it turns out, people couldn’t get enough of Jase and the rest of the Robertsons as Duck Dynasty debuted on A&E in March 2012 and spent the next 11 seasons entertaining families around the country. “People just think it’s cliché that we’ve said that our priorities are God, family and ducks, but that’s just the way it is,” Jase said of the show’s success. “Really for us, it’s a family show that we enjoy doing together… We’re really a family who happens to duck hunt. You know, there are more people who watch the show who aren’t hunters. I think that’s because we’ve tapped into human life, which is what we’re about. I mean, I love to duck hunt, but I love the Lord a lot more, and I love my wife and kids more than I love to duck hunt.”
Living by that principle throughout the show’s five-year run from 2012 to 2017, Jase has built his reputation as the mischievous older brother but he’s also proven he has a heart of gold after launching the Mia Moo Fund alongside his wife, Missy, and their daughter, Mia, who was born with a cleft lip and palate. In September 2017, the foundation raised $35,000 to promote awareness and, as a celebration, Jase agreed to shave his beard and cut his hair—an act that no one in the Robertson family took lightly.
“Here I am worried about what she’s going to look like, while the doctors aren’t even sure she can breathe on her own,” Jase said of his daughter’s surgery to correct her cleft lip and palate. “From that moment on, I stopped being so superficial. It’s been a life-changing experience for me and Missy because of how shallow we used to think.” Now determined to spread that message and his faith as he’s once again stopped shaving—he is a Robertson, after all—Jase says he’s “happy, happy, happy” with the blessings life has shown him.