A change of pace and a smiling face for DeKalb Hardware owner Hagen Knox
This week’s Bowie County Citizens Tribune’s Business Spotlight is on DeKalb Hardware. Located at 121 N Centre Street in DeKalb, DeKalb Hardware is a conveniently located, locally owned and operated one stop shop for all your hardware needs. With more than 15,000 products in inventory and a knowledgeable staff, capable of answering any questions a customer might have, it is definitely worth making a stop there before making the drive to Texarkana for anything from water heaters, to dog food and everything in between.
Owner Hagen Knox is a West Bowie County native, born and raised just down the road in Malta, and graduated from New Boston High School in 2003. After graduation, he began traveling as a catastrophe insurance adjuster and stayed on the road nearly constantly for the next 7-8 years.
However, his heart was always here in Bowie County. “This is just home to me, and I always knew I wanted to come back home,” said Knox. “After I met my wife(Olivia) I just didn’t enjoy traveling as much. I did insurance adjusting from home for a while, then heard the Kings were wanting to sell their business here in DeKalb and I decided I wanted to change directions.”
And change directions he did. From the fast-paced high stress world of insurance adjusting, Hagen has had to re-adjust to the more laid back pace of life in a small town. “What I’m doing now is way more laid back,” he said. “I can go to the Grinder every morning and get my coffee, say hello and just slow down a little - I had to learn to calm down some, but it agrees with me.”
Though the lifestyle might be laid back, DeKalb Hardware is actually a bustling place.
Knox completely remodeled and knocked out a wall to expand the cinder block structure, also adding a break room and office, and everything got a fresh coat of paint. The result is a spacious well-organized space with wall-to wall products for every homeowner and do-it-yourselfer. A steady stream of customers keeps the five DeKalb Hardware employees busy, doing everything from looking up lawnmower parts, to matching paint colors, to assisting customers in picking out the perfect new toilet seat. And if one of the DeKalb Hardware staff doesn’t know you by name when you walk in the door, they definitely do before your shopping experience is over.
Knox says his customers are what make the days worthwhile. “DeKalb is just an awesome town with awesome people in it,” he said. “I can honestly say I haven’t had a bad customer experience yet. Everyone has been so supportive, and I couldn’t ask for a better place with better people.”
DeKalb Hardware is open Monday through Friday 7:30am to 6:30pm, Saturday 8am to 5pm, and Sunday 10am to 4pm.