Editor’s Note: Ronnie “Cuz” Strickland was one of the first members of the Mossy Oak family, besides Toxey Haas, the creator and founder, Bill Sugg and Bob Dixon. Today Strickland is Mossy Oak’s Senior Vice President of Television and Related Media.
We’re not really big on titles at Mossy Oak. We just all pitch in and do whatever needs to be done. One day Toxey called me to his office again for one of those, “Oh, no, here it comes” meetings. He said, “Cuz, I'm going to make Bill Sugg the president of Mossy Oak.” I said, “That’s the coolest thing ever. Bill deserves to be president of the company. He’s the first employee you ever hired. He’s had to figure out how to take Mossy Oak to where it is today. Most of it he had to learn on his own without a lot of coaching, and that was a huge task. I don’t think you could find a better person to be the president.” Then Toxey said, “That’s not all. You're going to be the vice president.” But nothing has really changed. I still do whatever needs to be done, and when I have an opportunity to help someone, I do.
In corporate America, people say, “Friends can’t work together.” But Toxey, Bill and I have been friends since day one. I saw what Toxey and Bill did to help build this company, and I have a tremendous amount of respect for them as people and also for their work ethic.
I feel really fortunate to be part of Mossy Oak. I've always believed that if you treat someone else’s money like it’s your money, and you have a good work ethic, you can do well in any business. I think my business card says that I'm the senior vice president, but I feel the most comfortable just being a Mossy Oak family member.
Really and truly, my favorite title is gamekeeper. I enjoy plowing and planting food plots and growing fruit and nut trees for deer and turkeys. I love taking grandkids out in the woods, sitting in a pop-up blind with them and seeing the excitement in their faces when they spot a deer or a turkey. I love to watch how they really glow with almost uncontrollable joy when they harvest an animal. That’s why I’m a Mossy Oak family member – I support everything associated with Mossy Oak and what the company represents.