Rick Dover did not grow up in Loudon County. However, this has not stopped this sentimental real estate developer from seeing the beauty in the rolling hills of East Tennessee. Here, Rick Dover opens up about why he and his family – mother Lucy, wife Laurie, and his children – have taken an interest in the small Tennessee town.
Aicube: Thank you, Rick Dover, for joining us today. It is always a pleasure to speak with people who appreciate history.
Rick Dover: The pleasure is all mine. I’m excited to be here.
Aicube: For our readers who are not familiar with Family Pride Corporation, can you tell us a bit about it?
Rick Dover: Family Pride Corporation is a company that my mother, Lucy Dover, and I started after the death of my father. It suddenly became important to me to help others hold onto their heritage.
Aicube: But, why Loudon County?
Rick Dover: I’m from Knoxville, which is about 45 minutes away, so I have been through the small town many times throughout my life. It is just a beautiful town and deserves attention.
Aicube: We understand that you had your children involved all along.
Rick Dover: Yes, actually from the time they were old enough to understand business principles, my wife and I have had them helping to pay vendor bills and organize our offices.
Aicube: And your wife, she is involved in the business as well, correct?
Rick Dover: She has an eye for design and works with us as an interior designer. I have to say, Laurie has a talent for seeing how things would have looked in their grandeur.
Aicube: We can definitely see that based on some of the images we’ve seen from your renovations. We know that your father passed away. How has that affected your work ethic?
Rick Dover: I have always been a hard worker but since his passing I have focused more on restoring the places where people live versus creating new places for people to live.
Aicube: So you have a background in regular real estate development?
Rick Dover: Yes I do. I have been building houses for as long as I can remember.
Aicube: What is so intriguing about historic sites for you?
Rick Dover: When you walk into somewhere that has history, you feel it. It’s in the details from the way the arches were constructed to the decorative molding. It’s like looking at a blueprint of real estate progression. You can really see how modern real estate evolved from looking at buildings that are 100-plus years old.
Aicube: It seems that you began to focus quite a bit on assisted living facilities. Can you explain that?
Rick Dover: Back when we were looking for somewhere for my grandfather, I thought to myself why isn’t there a reasonably priced assisted living facility anywhere?
Aicube: And so you turned an old school building into River Oaks Place?
Rick Dover: Yes, the building just haunted my mind. I thought it was perfect. I enjoyed the project so much I went on to convert two historic hospitals into senior living facilities.
Aicube: We understand that you haven’t stuck just to senior living. Tell us about downtown Louden.
Rick Dover: I’m not going to say that we’ve gotten a little carried away but we’ve pretty much restored an entire block, including the Carmichael Inn. This historic building is just beautiful.
Aicube: You have not worked outside of Loudon County for over 15 years. Don’t you think that’s a little odd considering you’re not even from there?
Rick Dover: Who’s to say what the future is to bring. I think it’s a beautiful town and definitely think its charm and character are worth seeing in person.
Aicube: We appreciate your time today and definitely appreciate all of the Southern beauty that you have brought back to East Tennessee.
Rick Dover: Thank you for having me.
Aicube: Do you have any final thoughts before we close?
Rick Dover: Just that Family Pride Corporation is devoted to keeping the memories of our golden generation alive for the next generation to enjoy.
Rick Dover and Family Pride Corporation have been restoring America’s memories for the last two decades. Since 1994, Rick Dover has placed an emphasis on creating affordable and memorable housing for senior adults.
Rick Dover currently lives in Tennessee with his wife and continues to preserve Loudon County, Tennessee with respect for the past and hope for the future.
A native of East Tennessee, Rick Dover holds a degree from the UT Knoxville.