Building a Good World: One Boy’s Journey


Ryan building a table in his family’s garage. [All photos provided by Clover Willison]

When a 13-year-old begins a woodworking business, we think he should get some recognition. When he donates one of his handcrafted projects to his old school…we think he should get a lot of recognition.

“I’ve always been interested in woodworking,” explained Ryan Willison earlier this year. The Miranda Junior High School student got the idea for making child-sized picnic tables in woodshop but began making them in the family garage.. “I make them to sell. One of my mom’s friends wanted me to make one for her. Then other people started asking me.” He charges between $100 and $200 depending on wood type and stain.13083169_10208077363227328_4438487930637127578_n

Just recently he took his first adult sized picnic table orders.

Willison has a goal. “I’m trying to save up for a truck when I turn 16. I’m thinking like a Toyota…like a Tundra.”

But he was willing to put off his goal to help his old school. Willison donated one of his picnic tables to Children’s House in Briceland. “The school is nice,” he explained.

His mother, Clover Willison says she’s proud that her son “knows that giving back to the community is a priority, especially in times of abundance.” 13100904_10208096528586450_239196668234249483_n

UPDATE 10:19 a.m.: We just learned from Kenny Ingalls, Ryan’s woodshop teacher, that the 13-year-old won first place in his division at the Best of Humboldt Industrial Arts show at Redwood Acres last month!Coffee Table prize winner



  • alicia thompson

    Thats awesome…good job…to Ryan and his parents…good values last a lifetime!

  • Young man I’m in pressed!you have a heart of gold.And Mom clover,GREAT job raising a fine young man!!!

  • This is a joy to hear about. Those tables look so well made and the young man is not only helping his community but also setting as example that will inspire others. Good job!

  • I needed this for a boost from all the bad news. Great to hear about this young man with a sense of purpose. Of course, an applaud to the parents, as well. Great job.

  • Refreshing to read about whats right in the world for a change!

  • Thank u kim for putting in a ray of sunshine .against all the murder thieving ,drug busts .This boy is gonna be a fine young man keep up the good work lil fella .You make your family proud .

  • Love this story. Keep up the good work, Ryan!

  • WTG Ryan, you, as well as your mom are an inspiration to all. Clover, you did an amazing job raising this young man.

  • Ryan, your work looks pristine and very very handsome. Great job! And thanks for donating to your old school!

  • Driftwood sculpter

    Awesome, working with wood is good for the soul and the brain.

  • And to top it all off, Ryan is smart enough to be thinking “Toyota.” Well done all around, and more coming from this young ‘un, you betcha! af

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