Davie Construction thrives on integrity
Published 9:39 am Thursday, March 23, 2017
BERMUDA RUN – Hire the right people and treat them well. Treat your customers with respect and fairness.
That philosophy has treated Carl Carney well. As president and CEO of Davie Construction Co., he has grown the business from barely more than one person to 46 employees today. Add to that dozens of sub-contractors on projects from Davie County into neighboring states.
“It’s a tight-knit group,” he said. “I hire the right person and teach them what we do.”
That wasn’t always the case. Davie Construction went through tough times – times when half of the contractors in business went under – but survived. Carney learned from those times, and from hiring the wrong people from time to time.
Now, employees regularly get together away from work, at least three times a year. They support each other at and away from work.
“It’s a family,” Carney said. “We call it the Davie Construction Company family for a reason. I don’t want to get too big to where we lose that.”
That philosophy was handed down by Allen Snipes, who has helped the company through several tough situations.
“He reminded me to do things right and treat people right. He came along at a perfect time.”
Carney still calls Snipes for advice from time to time.
Carney believes in relationships. Many of Davie Construction’s clients are repeat customers.
He also likes making the lives of his employees better.
“I like taking some of the guys who work here … and allow them to reach a level they never thought they could reach, and allow them to provide for their families. I love providing an opportunity for folks to better themselves.”
Carney is also a community-minded family man. A dedicated graduate of East Carolina University, he was a regular at games there until last year. Priorities changed quickly when his son, Cade, started playing football for Wake Forest University.
It was the chance to earn a construction management degree that led Carney to East Carolina, where he played football. It’s also where he met wife Teddy, and they were married and moved to South Carolina soon after graduation, where he worked for a large construction company for a few years.
Then they moved here, and are raising four children: Cade; Salem, a senior at UNC Greensboro; Ivey, a junior at East Carolina; and Tate, a seventh grader at Ellis Middle School.
Teddy is a regular volunteer in schools, and the family attends Hillsdale Methodist Church. They support youth sports teams and he has served on the Davie Community Foundation board.
Earlier this year, Davie Construction was awarded the business of the year award from the Davie County Chamber of Commerce.
There are many buildings in Davie County built by Davie Construction: Advanced Oral & Facial Surgery of the Triad, First Baptist of Mocksville CORE building, Subway of Mocksville, Davie County Farm Bureau, State Employees Credit Union in Bermuda Run, Davie Dermatology, BB&T in Mocksville, Hillsdale Dental, The Tire Shop, Hillsdale Methodist.
Davie Construction is building the new home for The Dragonfly House in Mocksville.
“We try to be involved in community groups,” he said. “Some of our guys coach ball teams and we support them.”
Carney enjoys working on buildings that provide services to people. They work with Elon University, and several assisted living homes.
The company’s mission statement: “Davie Construction Co. is committed to providing the highest quality construction and general contracting services with a focus on value engineering and innovative solutions. Our employees are all dedicated to the care values of integrity, vision, technology and team work and making them an integral part of every project and long-lasting business relationship.
It’s been almost 25 years since Don Angell started the company and soon hired Carney, who has owned it for the last 14 years. Top players are: Janet Shepherd, chief financial officer; Brad Chapman, vice president of pre-construction; Ricky Shutt, vice president of operations; and Ben Tuck, vice president of facility services.
The company bids on projects up to about $10 million. It employs 18 superintendents who can manage projects, and usually have 15-20 projects ongoing at any given time.
“I’m personally involved in every project and available to my clients from the minute we meet and onwards. We build lasting relationships with each project and it’s a point of personal pride that most of my clients become my friends, and subsequently refer their friends and colleagues to us.
“For 20 years, that’s how we’ve built our business, and I’m convinced it’s the best way to succeed.”
He was proud to receive the award from the chamber, which not only recognizes business success, but community involvement.
“This is shared by every member of the Davie Construction team,” Carney wrote in the company’s spring employee newsletter. “Together, we have created a reputation as a community-minded business and have been recognized for our dedication to giving back.”
He quoted Carolyn McManamy, Davie Chamber president: “We love seeing Davie Construction signs around town. They signify growth, success and a commitment to building our community.”