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Company Timeline

Our Legacy

For the past 25 years Bill Jordan has poured his heart into the outdoors, leading the way in pattern innovation, outdoor entertainment and connecting others to the outdoors. Here's a glimpse into the life of Realtree's founder and leader. Welcome to Team Realtree®.

Our Legacy

1973

1973

Bill Jordan (pronounced Jurdan; It’s a regional thing) graduated from Ole Miss, leaving behind a successful football career where as a wide reciever he helped QB Archie Manning set numerous passing records. He left with a diploma and a bum knee, neither of which helped him with his dreams of a career in the NFL.

1974-82

1974-82

Bill worked for his father and brother at Leon Jordan Marine in his hometown of Columbus, Georgia. Bill’s natural salesmanship skills served him well in the business, but his best business attributes – his promotional sense and ability – were developed while fishing and winning bass tournaments across the Southeast.

1983

1983

While Bill enjoyed the boat industry, his true passion was for hunting. This sparked his interest in forming a hunting company, Spartan Archery Products, which he opened in a back room of his father’s boat dealership. Spartan manufactured T-shirts, head nets, caps and archery accessories at a local mill. Bill then sold the finished goods to a variety of retail customers across the country.

1984

1984

Bill attended the Shooting, Hunting, Outdoor Trade (SHOT) Show and saw Jim Crumley’s Trebark® Camouflage. At that very moment, Bill began working on what would be come Realtree® Camouflage and more. Upon his return to Columbus, Bill worked in his parent’s front yard, sketching the bark of a giant tree.

1986

1986

Bill introduced Realtree® Camouflage (originally the pattern name and the brand name were the same) at the SHOT Show. Interesting factoid: Bill couldn’t afford the 20x20-foot space he’d purchased at the show, so he had employees warn him whenever they saw SHOT Show officials in the aisle. Bill would then hide behind a curtain in the back of the booth. He did manage to pay his bill by the time the show was over.

1987

Bill wanted to make sure that magazine readers knew what they were looking at when they saw his camo in magazines so he developed the first Team Realtree® logo. This logo has evolved over the years and today can be found on hundreds of products and even on NASCAR race cars.

1987

Bill wanted to make sure that magazine readers knew what they were looking at when they saw his camo in magazines so he developed the first Team Realtree® logo. This logo has evolved over the years and today can be found on hundreds of products and even on NASCAR race cars.

1988

Bill added bark and leaf overlays to his original Realtree® Pattern to create Brown-Leaf® and Grey-Leaf®. Thus began the evolution of camouflage into the modern day High Definition patterns offered by Realtree®.

1988

Bill added bark and leaf overlays to his original Realtree® Pattern to create Brown-Leaf® and Grey-Leaf®. Thus began the evolution of camouflage into the modern day High Definition patterns offered by Realtree®.

1991

1991

Improvement to the effectiveness of the Realtree® patterns continued with the introduction of (Original) All-Purpose Brown and All-Purpose Grey. These two new patterns were much more “open” than any other patterns on the market at the time. David Blanton joins Realtree® and in…

1992

1992

… Realtree® entered the video and television markets with Springtime Monarchs® and Whitetails in the Wild® videos, as well as the Realtree Outdoors® television show. The following year the turkey and deer video titles were changed to All-Stars of Spring® and Monster Bucks® and have been branded this way ever since.

1994

1994

The Advantage pattern/brand (as with Realtree, originally the pattern and brands shared the same name) was introduced. This brand has grown today to include the MAX-1® and MAX-5® patterns, which serve the western and waterfowl niches, respectively. With the introduction of the Advantage brand, Bill Jordan greatly increased his focus on conservation, beginning a long-term relationship with Ducks Unlimited. To this day Realtree continues to work closely with DU, NWTF, RMEF, QU and other groups to ensure the future of wildlife, habitat and our hunting heritage.

1996

Realtree joined forces with Richard Childress Racing as primary sponsor of the #31 Chevrolet®, then driven by Mike Skinner. This led in the later years to an associate sponsor deal of the #3 Dale Earnhardt Chevy, to a primary sponsorship of the #71 Dave Marcis Monte Carlo, and an associate sponsorship of the #29 Kevin Harvick Chevrolet.

1996

Realtree joined forces with Richard Childress Racing as primary sponsor of the #31 Chevrolet®, then driven by Mike Skinner. This led in the later years to an associate sponsor deal of the #3 Dale Earnhardt Chevy, to a primary sponsorship of the #71 Dave Marcis Monte Carlo, and an associate sponsorship of the #29 Kevin Harvick Chevrolet.

1997

1997

Realtree introduced the X-tra Brown® and the X-tra Grey® patterns, and Bill sold the Spartan clothing line to focus Realtree’s efforts completely on licensing and marketing.

1998

1998

Advantage Wetlands® found a home on nearly every hunters’ back and DU named the pattern its “Official Waterfowl Camo.” ReatlreeOutdoors.com went live. Interesting side note: Initially a “web entrepreneur” bought the rights to Realtree.com. This unfortunate event forced the use of RealtreeOutdoors.com for a couple of years until a settlement was reached.

1999

1999

Realtree Hardwoods was introduced and Bill started Immersion Graphics Corporation, which today is the primary source for decoration of all camo hard goods products such as guns, bows, ATVs and more.

2000

Advantage Timber® hit the market and took it by storm. This pattern carried the wooded/timber camo theme a step further with the incorporation of many more neutral/natural/subtle colors, thus adding not only to the effectiveness of the pattern but also the appeal.

2000

Advantage Timber® hit the market and took it by storm. This pattern carried the wooded/timber camo theme a step further with the incorporation of many more neutral/natural/subtle colors, thus adding not only to the effectiveness of the pattern but also the appeal.

2002

2002

How do you improve on your best-selling pattern ever? Introduce a proprietary printing process called High Definition® and utilize it on Realtree Hardwoods HD® and Realtree Hardwoods Green HD®. The High Definition process truly sets Realtree patterns apart from the competition – not only in terms of realism, but also effectiveness, print quality, steadfastness and more. Most unbearable moments of 2002: Bill misses “The Barbwire Buck” and “Stickers.” See Monster Bucks XI® for details.

2003

2003

Advantage MAX-4 HD® exploded on the market like a 3 ½-inch magnum, and dominated the waterfowl market until the introduction of MAX-5 in 2014. Realtree Road Trips debuted on Outdoor Channel and changed hunting shows forever.

2005

2005

Advantage MAX-1 addressed the Western hunter’s desire for an open terrain pattern – and more. MAX-1 proved to be extremely versatile in virtually every terrain encountered across the huge expanse called The West. Go West and you’ll see it, but you’ll have to look close.

2006

2006

Realtree looks for a slogan that hits at the heart of everything we’re about... and finds it: Family, Friends, and the Outdoors.

2007

2007

Realtree AP® (All-Purpose) and Realtree APG® (Green) made the most dramatic appearance by any camo patterns ever. Today these patterns can be found on thousands of products that can take you from cradle to grave… literally… you can find diaper covers or a casket in these patterns.

2008

2008

Realtree went crazy and wrapped a Las Vegas Monorail in AP to promote the Team Realtree message at the SHOT Show. Realtree’s Monster Bucks TV® debuted on Outdoor Channel® as did Realtree’s Monster Bulls TV® on Versus®, bringing not only the two DVD series to television, but also much more action, tips, highlights and behind-the-scenes footage.

2009

2009

Realtree welcomes the MAX-4 waterfowl and MAX-1 western patterns into the Realtree family of patterns. From now on, there’s no excuse not to wear Realtree. We truly have every need covered! Realtree AP Colors hit the market for those who want to show their true colors at all times – even when wearing hunting camo doesn’t fit the occasion. Available in a wide variety of school and fashion shades, Realtree AP Colors provide just enough camo feel to let your wild side show when you’re out on the town.

2010

Realtree extends its electronic reach to all of our fans:

  • The Realtree Field Guide is introduced to deliver regular news and updates on all things Realtree. Always be in the know!
  • Realtree.tv launches to offer smooth delivery of full-length television shows, cool tips and clips, plus user-generated video on our YouOutdoors Channel.
  • Realtree.com gets an extreme makeover and now delivers even better original content in an easy access format.

2010

Realtree extends its electronic reach to all of our fans:

  • The Realtree Field Guide is introduced to deliver regular news and updates on all things Realtree. Always be in the know!
  • Realtree.tv launches to offer smooth delivery of full-length television shows, cool tips and clips, plus user-generated video on our YouOutdoors Channel.
  • Realtree.com gets an extreme makeover and now delivers even better original content in an easy access format.

2011

2011

In 2011, Realtree celebrated 25 years of keeping outdoorsmen, women and children concealed in the “World's Most Versatile Camo Patterns.” We look forward to another 25 years and beyond, and fully intend to continue supporting our hunting heritage so that all future generations can enjoy the great outdoors as we do today.

2013

2013

Realtree launched its most realistic pattern ever, Realtree Xtra, also available in a green version. The breakthrough in camo pattern realism comes from a combination of design and printing technology that delivers three distinct fields within one camo pattern: a foreground, mid-ground, and background. The Realtree Xtra and Realtree Xtra Green camo designs feature 12 warm, natural colors. The new designs provide all-season utility for hunters and outdoorspeople. Their subtle shadows, highlights, and textures blend with more terrain and lighting conditions than any other camo pattern available and make Realtree Xtra the most versatile camo on the market.

2014

2014

Realtree introduces MAX-5, the hardest working camo for the hardest working hunters. This pattern is filled with cattails, reeds, cane and grasses to blend into flooded marshes. Plus corn, wheat, oats and sunflowers to hide you in open fields. It has branches, twigs and leaves that work in flooded timber. And with open areas that mimic mud, water, bark and shadows, MAX-5 literally adds another layer of invisibility to waterfowl camo. Of course, all MAX-5 pattern elements are strategically placed to create super-realistic tone, contrast and shadow. The result? Maximum effectiveness for your waterfowl success.