It’s with great enthusiasm Gerri and I announce the transition of Tom Morgan Rodsmiths to two life-long fly fishermen, craftsmen and entrepreneurs, Joel Doub and Matt Barber.
First and foremost: we want to assure you the Rods and Hand Mills from Tom Morgan Rodsmiths will continue to exceed all expectations.
When we put TMR up for sale, we promised our customers to only accept the most qualified successors. It was important that the new owners of TMR continue our commitment to quality and instinctively understand why our rods are incomparable. We know that a transition to new owners might cause anxiety, let us assure you we have great confidence in Matt and Joel. In this transition process they have demonstrated integrity, initiative, organization and an entrepreneurial spirit. We will be here to support them as long as needed to insure you get the rod or Hand Mill that you expect.
From our early conversations we could see that Joel and Matt showed a passionate commitment to our customers’ experience, a deep desire to continue our quality, a fine understanding of TMR’s rod design heritage, as well as their personal integrity.
The transition – which is underway -- will be a gradual one. It includes an extended apprenticeship, during which Matt and Joel will continue to learn the intricacies and craftsmanship needed to build and design the highest quality rods.
TMR’s current rod building team will stay in place, and the shop will remain located in the Bozeman area. Somewhat ironically, we have become employees of TMR too. We will be actively involved in crafting each rod, in R&D and overall strategic advisement. You can expect all the rods we make will be representative of our continued commitment to quality. Joel and Matt will work under Gerri’s tutelage in our present shop, and with Tom and his keen imagination in creating a few new models.
Rest assured that both of us will stay engaged with TMR for the long term. We will transition towards a more relaxing semi-retirement when the time is right.
We firmly believe in Matt and Joel’s ability to adhere to our standards, and continue the TMR legacy for generations to come. Now, and under Matt and Joel’s leadership moving forward, TMR will continue to deliver the very best rods you will ever own.
The personal satisfaction of all those who own our rods or a Hand Mill remains essential to TMR’s success. The relationships we have built over the last 20 years with customers and suppliers have been one of the best things about owning this company. We appreciate your kindness, friendship and especially your patience. Please reach out to Matt and Joel or us - anytime, in any manner - with questions. Don’t hesitate to stop in and visit. We would love that!
With the warmest regards and deep appreciation,
Tom Morgan & Gerri Carlson
Joel Doub | email@example.com | 303-475-4836
Joel started fly-fishing at the age of six, when his grandfather gave him his first fly rod – a 7’6” fiberglass Fenwick model – which he used to terrorize the local panfish population while growing up in Denver, Colo. He has become a passionate fly fisherman and conservationist, and has fished for 24 species of fish all over the world.
When he was 12, he was diagnosed with Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia. Ironically, during this time Joel’s love of fly fishing blossomed. Following a bone marrow transplant – and quarantined in his room for 48 days – he had his fly tying materials sterilized so he could escape from the realities of being a sick child. The Make-A-Wish foundation granted him a trip, and he chose to go to Bristol Bay, Alaska to pursue some of the largest rainbow trout in the world. Since then, Joel has fished extensively for fresh and saltwater species, and finds the solitude and relaxation of fly fishing so important, his wife included permission to go fishing in their wedding vows.
Joel graduated with a degree in Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology from the University of Colorado in 1996. With a professional background in the business of science and healthcare, he has spent the last 12 years in the medical device field working with spine surgeons and spine implant manufacturers. He has managed multi-million dollar budgets and has pursued and achieved aggressive sales growth targets by training sales personnel and surgeons on highly technical spine surgery procedures. He also founded and operated Freestone Medical, a successful medical distributorship and consulting business which grew to $1.5 million in annual sales. In these roles he has thrived in both complex technical sales and product development arenas.
He has a passion for authenticity, creative problem solving and craftsmanship, and will bring these qualities to expand upon the vision and genius of Tom Morgan Rodsmiths. Joel, his wife Lindsey, and their young son live in Bozeman, Mont.
Matt Barber | firstname.lastname@example.org | 303-519-8318
Matt developed a love for fishing at an early age, chasing largemouth bass, perch and bluegills from an aluminum Grumman canoe in Grand Lake Stream, Maine with his great-grandfather. The old-timers, clad in L.L. Bean flannel and wool pants, taught Matt to play cribbage, hunt and fish. He started with an old Shakespeare spinning rod and evolved to an Eagle Claw fiberglass fly rod when he turned ten.
While attending St. Lawrence University, Matt took his love of fly fishing to the fabled trout streams of the Adirondacks, where he graduated with a degree in English Literature and Education. His desire to ski and fish brought him to Denver via Park City and Boulder. Matt spent 17 years at Stanley British Primary School teaching middle school English, working in admissions and, for the past five years, as the head of its middle school.
Matt’s fascination with all things fly fishing expanded, as he began to tie flies, and explore the nuances of salt water fly fishing; an Ascension Bay “grand slam” on his honeymoon solidified it. Frequent trips back to the east coast to visit family allow Matt to chase striped bass and false albacore on Block Island and Montauk.
When not teaching, Matt enjoys working with his hands, and has renovated a number of houses and invented accessories for paddleboard fishing. He also built a wood drift boat, where the process – including experimenting with epoxies and steam bending wood – proved to be profoundly satisfying. Matt’s passion for craftsmanship, his innate curiosity as a life-long learner, and his desire for, and pride in, the highest quality workmanship will translate to rod building during his apprenticeship with Tom and Gerri.
Matt – and his wife Alex – enjoy watching their young son Hudson learning to cast, trying to tie flies and falling asleep hugging his stuffed trout. They will relocate to Bozeman in the spring of 2017.