JACKSONVILLE, FL—June 17, 2019—Paul Woodall Davis, founder of Paul Davis Restoration Inc., died last week at age 92. “Our offices are a bit somber this morning,” said Rich Wilson, current president and CEO of Paul Davis Restoration. “I am so pleased that I got to visit him recently and tell him how much his guidance and great spirit have helped me personally and helped the entire company to thrive.”
Davis founded Paul W. Davis Contracting in 1966 when insurance restoration contracting was a niche market. Davis had unique insight and saw the potential for the restoration industry to become what it is today: a multi-billion-dollar stand-alone industry.
The company began franchising in 1969 and Davis moved into a new role as instructor for incoming franchisees. He wrote the original company operations manual and personally taught the owners’ school. As the franchise network grew and he had less personal time to spend teaching, instructors were brought in and employees were empowered to participate in the owners’ school. Today, Paul Davis has over 300 North American offices that employ more than 126,000 restoration professionals.
Davis took a personal interest in all the employees at what was then called Paul W. Davis Systems. His management style was the same as his project development; he empowered his employees and helped them make corrections along the way. He had an open-door policy, and he made himself available to everyone at the company.
In 2016 Davis wrote and published his autobiography called, “If I Could, So Can You!”, an effort that delighted the entire PDRI system. In the book, Davis writes, “For any organization to enjoy the greatest potential for success, its culture must always reflect its basic values.”
Stephanie Rosenstone, senior executive assistant to Rich Wilson, spoke at Davis’ funeral Saturday, saying, “Paul felt strongly that Rich Wilson embodies the values and integrity which the company was founded on. Paul often commented that Rich is the perfect CEO to lead our network to the growth that he could not have dreamed. He was passionate about his support for the direction/leadership occurring at what is now Paul Davis Restoration Inc.”