Not coincidentally, my baby boy was born within a few weeks of the start of the Debowsky Design Group. And while both were created from love, I went into both roles without any actual “ownership” experience. I knew about design and may have changed a diaper or two, but this was the real deal – on both accounts. As we look over our shoulder, a decade into the greatest ride, I am a better person for the undertaking.
There have been moments of doubt. There were sleepless nights. And there were changes – lots of them. But watching something grow is one of life’s secret miracles and including a phenomenal circle of support makes that growth very real. What started as an idea, is now followed by others and enjoyed by many. And it has been my great honor to lead from the front. To say that I did any of this alone would be a blatant lie and to put myself out there as having mastered the task would be worse. The firm – and parenting, for what it’s worth – is the result of a million choices, a few hard lessons and, candidly, a bit of luck along the way.
As we celebrate the people and projects that have filled these years, it’s important to remember how different the economy was on day one. In the heart of a generational recession, so many were willing to invest in our success – they seemed to understand that it takes a community to build a community. I’ll never forget those first few contracts because they were signed on a handshake and a hug. In so many ways, we are still that company. From small kitchens to tiny bathrooms, we are now spending our days on large additions, massive renovations and – our dream projects – brand new luxury residences. Because our world is built on details, I can still recount the backsplash tile of one, the flooring of another and the light fixtures of yet another project. All in, we have improved the lives (and resale values) of hundreds of families throughout our area and met thousands more along the way. Our team feels that pride in every project.
And this brings me to a lasting “a ha” moment; the kind of casual interaction that reinforces a mission and creates an indelible memory to carry you through all the days that follow. I was in the grocery store about five years ago with my wife and two young children – just casually shopping on a weekend afternoon when we were approached by a past client; someone that we had worked to improve their kitchen and master suite. When the women knelt down to tell me kids that their dad made them love being in their house – and the corresponding look in their eyes to hear it – I knew that this simple kindness would stay with me forever. To know that my family could see the way that we helped another family enjoy their home was life changing.
So, to honor this moment, we have made the decision to waive off the congratulatory cocktail and celebrate the true honor of reciprocating the love to a town that has embraced this young business. We’d like to spend the funds for a party on bolstering our community. There have been several notices with all the details but I want to underscore the profound importance – to us – in saying thank you. Construction is a collaborative world and the way that we touch your daily lives with intuitive design and timeless planning is our way of making a lasting impression, long after all of the workers have left the site. I humbly ask that you continue this partnership and communicate your hopes for your home, your community and our world.
Our son is turning ten this month and he has no idea how we got here together. But he knows that his dad does some really cool stuff and he smiles to be included in it. We have learned a lot together along the way and we both acknowledge that there is more growing to do, and more challenges to embrace. People know that my “baby” is no longer a baby but they respect the way he has grown; and nobody is more proud than the guy in the first row. That goes for this Design Group of ours too. From my family to yours, I thank you for enabling me with your trust and allowing me the greatest perspective.