People discover their passions in life in different ways. For Brooke Gilliam, star of DIY Network/Magnolia Network’s new home remodeling show ‘Making Modern with Brooke and Brice,’ that came at a young age.
“I’ve always loved taking things apart and remaking them, adding my own flair,” she said. “At the time, I didn’t know the term “semi-custom” but I now realize that was a passion from a young age! I spent a lot of time during summer breaks in the sewing room with my Granny and in my Grandaddy’s workshop out back. Watching how he crafted wood to become whatever he wanted to create was fascinating and mind boggling. I knew one day I wanted to do the same!”
But as sometimes happen, that passion seemed to get lost in life as she grew up, headed off to college and started a new life.
Webster County residents might recognize the new reality television star by her maiden name, Brooke Dunbar. She attended Clay Elementary from kindergarten through fifth grade, then moved to Slaughters Elementary for sixth through eighth grades, before graduating from Webster County High School in 2006.
After high schools, Brooke headed to Murray State University, where she completed a degree in marketing in just three years. Now, in her day job, she is a biopharmaceutical sales rep for Amgen while her husband, Brice, is an orthodontist who owns Elevation Orthodontics, an adult only practice in Nashville.
It was when the young couple began building their home in Nashville a few years ago that the couple rediscovered that passion Brooke had learned from her grandparents. Brooke and Brice not only designed their home, they worked long hours handling the construction themselves, sometimes staying late into the night and coming back before the sun came up the next day.
That dedication helped them build the house of their dreams. It also changed their lives in an unsuspected way.
The woman living across the street watched their progress with interest, and eventually bragged about their hard work and dedication to her friend, who had just moved to Nashville from New York.
“Sarah Kunin worked at ABC news for 13 years, 10 of those with Good Morning America,” Brooke said. “She always had her eyes peeled for new talent. She brought on Riverside Entertainment (the production team) to film a sizzle of us, which was then pitched to networks across the US. Ultimately, Magnolia paid for a pilot episode, and upon watching, it intrigued them enough for a first season!”
While the name Magnolia Network might not be familiar to most readers, it soon will be. Chip and Joanna Gaines, hosts of HGTV’s ‘Fixer Upper’ will assume the reigns of Discovery’s DIY Network in January 2022, rebranding it as the Magnolia Network.
In preparation for the change, the network plans to roll out a list of 10 new shows this summer, including ‘Making Modern with Brooke and Brice.’ Viewers can get their first look at this and all of the shows on the special ‘Magnolia Network: A Look Ahead Vol. 2,’ which drop on Discovery+ as part of the Magnolia Network Preview on April 23 and will air the following day, April 24, at 8:00 p.m. on the DIY Network
“What’s so cool about us is that Brice designs (and everyone should be super thankful for that because that is NOT my forté) and I’m the builder!” Brooke said. “I weld, I build, I tile, I do all things — except demo. I hate demo. Really I just hate the cleanup part!”
Brooke hopes that seeing a remodeling show where the roles are reversed will help other young people realize their passions.
“Ultimately, my hope is that seeing us in flipped roles inspires a generation of women that always wanted to try something outside their comfort zone,” she said. “I want people to see that even trying something and failing at it is success, that the biggest failure is never trying.”
While current restrictions prevent the couple from bringing the show to Kentucky, viewers might expect to see a few familiar faces on screen. Brooke’s father, Mickey Dunbar, chairman of the Webster County Board of Education and Webster County President of Planters Bank, is expected to appear in an episode later this year, while his wife Jill, a former Webster County Board office employee and current teacher at Madisonville-North Hopkins, has already filmed an episode.
Full episodes of all 10 new shows are slated to begin airing on the DIY Network on July 15, which also will mark the launch of the Magnolia app.
Contact Matt Hughes at email@example.com or 270-667-2069.