2023 New Hampshire Veteran-Owned Business of the Year is Rick Page of R.A. Page Farmhouse Furniture of Laconia
Craftsmanship, creativity, and good old-fashioned hard work are at the core of this successful veteran-owned business. Rick Page owns NH Lake’s Region treasure, R.A. Page Farmhouse Furniture in Laconia. Rick was inspired at a very young age to learn the art of crafting furniture and homes from his personal master craftsman instructor, his dad. When he decided to join the U.S. Air Force, his creative side appeared in a different form where he served as a musician providing that much needed entertainment and a piece of home for the men and women serving.
Veterans are dedicated, motivated, highly skilled, and great long-term planners making them a perfect fit for entrepreneurship. SBA recognizes this and provides support and programs to foster veterans to start and grow small businesses. In 2022, SBA reports that veterans own 2.4 million businesses, employ over 4 million people, and generate over $1 trillion in sales in this country. One of these 2.4 million calls Laconia home.
The story of R.A. Page Farmhouse Furniture is a classic New England story of craftsmanship and pride handed down from generation to generation. Henry Page was a master craftsman in both period furniture and antique house restoration and passed this love and understanding of his craft to his son, Rick. In 1986, Rick returned from his tour of duty in the U.S. Air Force and was looking for his next chapter. He decided to take the skills learned from his dad and his passion for the art of woodworking and start a business of his own. He worked hard to build relationships and create a brand within his community working with his talented team to offer a wide range of custom-made cabinetry and fine furniture. They provide their consumers full service starting with developing a great design that is functional, affordable, and beautiful and finishing with a custom build and on-site installation. You can find their work all over New England, from the beautiful Lakes Region of New Hampshire, Maine to Gloucester, and everywhere in between.
After many years of leasing commercial space, the company was ready for its permanent home. Rick contacted Capital Regional Development Council (CRDC), and along with Bank of NH, they provided funding with a SBA 504 loan to purchase their current facility on Davis Place in Laconia. The facility offers a large shop and office space on a quarter of an acre of land just a stone's throw from beautiful Lake Winnipesaukee. What started as a 1-man shop in a 500-square-foot space has now grown to a team of 10 working in an expanded 8,500-square-foot space equipped with state-of-the-art equipment that is continuously being enhanced as the company grows. “This was a great opportunity to support a growing small business. Through the process, I learned that Richard Page was an honorably discharged veteran of the US Air Force having served for four years from 1982-1986 as a musician to the service men and women. I heartily support Richard A. Page for the NH SBA Veteran Small Business Owner of the Year,” stated nominator Jennifer Boulanger CRDC Assistant Vice President. During COVID, the SBA was also able to assist the business with a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) that allowed Rick to keep his full-time staff available and working during those uncertain times.
Rick’s entrepreneurial spirit continues as he plans to open a lumber yard nearby in the coming months, offering both locals, contractors, and his own business, access to hardwood currently not available in the Lakes Region. For more information on R.A. Page Farmhouse Furniture visit Home.