The following article was published in the current issue of Alabama Construction News Magazine:
White-Spunner Construction: 2014 General Contractor of the Year
In its 30-plus years, much has changed at White-Spunner Construction. Based in Mobile, Alabama, the company has grown from a small company concentrating on local projects along the Gulf Coast to one of the largest privately held contracting firms in the Southeast managing major projects across the country. But as much as things have changed since the company was founded in 1981, the more they’ve really stayed the same. The company remains rooted in the same values as when it first began: to always meet the clients’ needs no matter what. “We do what it takes to be part of the solution,” said John White-Spunner, the company’s CEO and chairman of the board. “Safety is always first of course, but we also really focus on being on time and on budget, which are important for a client. That focus is just part of our culture.”
That focus on quality, timing and budget is what has led White-Spunner to receive recurring business from many of its customers. In fact, the company is still working with numerous clients it had when it first began. “We’ve always focused on creating long term relationships with clients and trades and vendors and then building on them,” White-Spunner said. “Because of that we’ve traveled across the country with many of the those same clients over the years.”
White-Spunner always hoped to start his own business, but he never dreamed he would start White-Spunner Construction quite as early on as he did. He was given the opportunity to run his own construction company when he was in his mid-20s when the owners of the company he worked for, Toinsmeire Construction, decided to quit the business. “I didn’t have a ‘Plan B’ when they decided to pursue other interests,” he explained. “The only thing I knew was construction. So fortunately, even though I was young and just kind of fell into it, I had a great team of people around me and a strong work ethic thanks to the influence of my father, Blacksher.”
From those early days, White-Spunner has gone on to complete jobs for major corporations like Coca-Cola, Lowes and Home Depot, as well as various healthcare, commercial and retail projects. One aspect that has made the company unique is that it has actually partnered with many of its clients to invest in properties. “I think we’re involved with over 200 different people in partnerships,” White-Spunner said. “To me, that brings a different perspective to the way you look at a project because as part owner we look beyond completion to the long term benefits of the project, the operational costs and the life cycle of things like exterior finishes and even the parking lot.”
While partnering with clients on various jobs may make the company unique, it really just speaks to what White-Spunner is all about: building relationships. “Everything is really about people,” White-Spunner said. “It’s not about the project. It’s about the relationships you build because in the end, that’s what matters.”
White-Spunner By The Numbers
A large crowd gathered early this morning for the grand opening of the new Nordstrom Rack store in Brandon, Fla. Festivities began at 8 a.m. with breakfast, coffee, music and a raffle for 30 $100 gift cards and one $1,000 shopping spree. The store opened its doors to the public at 9 a.m.
The 32,700-square-foot store offers clearance merchandise from Nordstrom stores and Nordstrom.com, as well as other items purchased specially for Nordstrom Rack stores. Customers can find designer apparel, accessories and shoes at 30 to 70 percent off regular prices. The new location at Lake Brandon Plaza also offers on-site alterations, as well as its own app and mobile check-out service.
White-Spunner Construction began building this $2.6 million store earlier this year, completing construction in just five months. This is the third store WSC has built for Nordstrom, Inc., including two other Nordstrom Rack stores in Birmingham, Ala. and Naples, Fla.
WSC would like to congratulate Debbie Johnson on her retirement! Debbie has worked as a Project Assistant for WSC for 12 years. Today marks her last day with the company, and a luncheon was held in honor of her 12 years of hard work and dedication.
Debbie plans to travel as much as possible with her husband, Bill, after he retires at the first of next year. They are hoping to plan their first trips to the Florida Keys, New Orleans and Disney World. They also plan to attend several Nascar races and a couple of PGA golf tournaments as well. The couple plans to put their house up for sale next spring and would like to purchase land for hunting and fishing near Birmingham where their son and his family lives.
Congratulations, Debbie! We wish you all the best and a happy retirement!
WSC would like to introduce our new project manager, Paul Lewis. Paul grew up in Mobile and attended high school at UMS-Wright. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from Auburn University in 2000.
Paul previously worked as a project manager/estimator at Roy Lewis Construction from 2000-2011, where he specialized in design-build contracts in all types of commercial construction with some limited work in some higher end custom residential work. He then worked for two years as project manager/estimator for C. Sharpe Co. in Orange Beach, where he specialized in waterproofing and restoration projects.
Paul's wife, Candice, is a fine arts instructor at Cottage Hill Christian School and Academy. They have two sons, James Holston who is eight years old, and Roan who is five. Paul's hobbies include all things outdoors such as kayaking, inshore fishing and hunting.
Hello everyone, my name is Thomas Cotton and I am an Assistant Project Manager on the RSA jobs. I attended college at Auburn University and earned my degree in Building Science. I have worked with White-Spunner Construction on various jobs through college internships, and I have always thought it was a great place to work. The men and women that I worked with on those projects taught a great deal about construction and real life experiences. With that knowledge I was vastly above the learning curve in my class and was able to graduate in 3-1/2 years.
After graduating from Auburn in 2010, I started with Southern Pipe in their Management Program. Shortly after completing the program, they assigned me to inside sales where I did most of their bidding out of the Mobile Branch. About a year later, the company asked me to move to outside sales to help grow their commercial, industrial and HVAC market. I gladly accepted and for the past two years worked my way up through the ranks until I was approached with a position here.
I grew up here in Mobile. I married my high school sweetheart, Monica, and we do not have any children at this time. I can only hope to be like everyone else at White-Spunner and earn a tenure here. I look forward to working with each and every one you!
I want to thank you for the opportunity to work for such a great company again!
This week, June 2-6, is OSHA's National Stand Down on Falls in Construction. To help raise awareness about fall prevention, Capital Safety, a manufacturer of fall protection equipment, has launched its Every Worker Every Time initiative, which is a five-day fall protection and training program.
To further raise awareness about fall prevention, Capital Safety created the following infographic. Please share this information about fall protection to others in the construction industry as we strive to bring every worker at height home safely, every workday.
WSC would like to introduce our new Foreman, Ruthie Wynn. Ruthie grew up in Chatom, AL where she graduated from George County High School, then went on to study nursing at Jones Junior College in Ellisville, MS.
Ruthie worked as a nurse in Ellisville for 12 years, and after Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast in 2005, she spent 4 years working for FEMA. In February of 2012, Ruthie began doing work for WSC through Labor Finders in Saraland, AL until this month, when she was hired as White-Spunners new Foreman.
Ruthie has two children, a 26-year-old daughter who is a nurse in Chatom, and a 24-year-old son who works in oil fields. She also has an 8-year-old granddaughter who is a straight-A student, and an 18-month-old grandson. Everyone please join us in welcoming Ruthie to WSC!
Viewpoint Construction Software recently created an infographic called "Safety in the Construction Industry" to give a deeper look at construction safety statistics over the last decade. Since safety is one of our top priorities at White-Spunner Construction, we wanted to share some of these interesting statistics:
Check out the full infographic below:
Hello everyone! My name is Courtney Cox, and I am the new Marketing/Communication Specialist for White-Spunner Construction. I grew up in the small town of Centreville, Alabama, which is about 30 miles southeast of Tuscaloosa.
After a few years of "soul searching" and several major changes, I graduated from The University of Alabama in December of 2013 with a B.A. in Communication, majoring in public relations with a minor in psychology. During school and after graduation, I worked part-time for The University of Alabama Executive MBA Department as the Social Media Coordinator/Marketing Assistant. I also have a background in writing, editing, event planning and advertising.
Some of my hobbies include music, reading, shopping and cooking. I also love animals and Alabama Football. I just moved from Tuscaloosa to the Gulf Coast in January of this year, and I am looking forward to spending many weekends on the beach this summer.
I am very excited to start this new chapter of my career at White-Spunner Construction, and I look forward to working with and getting to know everyone!