In 1999, I co-founded a composite decking manufacturing company called CorrectDeck, in the Biddeford Industrial Park. By 2006, going 24/7, we crested $30 million in sales and 75 people, and made the Inc 500 3 years running (something fairly rare). There were lots of firsts, and great support from the State. We developed the industry’s first hidden fastener
deckboard, the first woodgrain deckboard, and the first coextruded deckboard. All three of those features are standard in practically every competitor’s line today. We sold the product in 49 countries, and we even developed the first jobsite scrap recycling program, part of my passion for sustainability.
I am very proud of this venture. It still operates today, making Duralife Decking (a great product which I can recommend with gusto).
Even though I’m no longer involved with the operation of the company (the joke is it’s doing better without me), I’ve retained a passion for entrepreneurship in Maine. I believe there is no better place to start a business, and I believe very few other people believe that. And that’s what my podcast is about – changing that perception by talking to those who have done and are doing it.
It’s a blast to do, talking to these remarkable entrepreneurs. I do it only as an unpaid hobby/passion project, and purely to generate interest and connections among Maine entrepreneurs. After 100 episodes and 6 years, it’s pretty cool to have it picked up by WGAN, where it airs Sunday mornings at 11.
I’m also the executive director of E2Tech, Maine’s clean technology business alliance. If you’re in the engineering, environmental, or energy business, you should join.
I’m from Carthage, Maine (no one else ever heard of it either – it’s near Mt. Blue State Park and Tumbledown Mountain). I grew up a small farm where we kept (and still keep) Jersey dairy cows. My mom Joann S. Grohman is small farm- and food- famous, known all over the world for her book Keeping a Family Cow, which has sold more than 60,000 copies. She’s 91 now and still going strong, although she has macular degeneration.
I’m also a trustee of The Betterment Fund, a charitable organization that makes grants in conservation, education, and health care, particularly in western Maine. I’m especially interested in funding work that advances the state’s agricultural infrastructure, for example by improving distribution of farm products; and in business growth and entrepreneurship.
I sincerely hope you enjoy the podcast. I enjoy doing it and am glad to have you as a listener. I sometimes ask guests about their first bike. My first bike was a Raleigh.