Connect with Holloway Company:
Member Name: Brian LaFave
Company Name: Western Sky Designs
Member Category: Builder
Location: Brighton, CO
What inspired you to join NADRA? I have been in the BM industry for many years, mainly as a manufacturers representative. When I opened my business, I knew the value of being a member of NADRA and believe wholeheartedly in the message. I am passionate about the decking industry and try to instill that when meeting with potential customers.
When did you first get involved with this industry? 2001 as a sales rep in a lumberyard
What was the first thing you ever built? The first thing inbuilt was a dog house for my dog – Jordan. I was 14. This was a piece of art.
We want to get to know you, please tell us a little about your business: I started Western Sky Designs in 2015, primarily as a design and consultation company to earn extra income. As I went through the process, I realized my experience with many manufacturers would translate nicely into a full time career. Our specialty is custom decks, rail, and shade structures. We are passionate about building decks correctly and safely. This year we will build about 30 decks. In addition to patio covers and custom
pergolas. We will also complete 5-10 basements per year.
How do you define success? Success to me is personal relationships with my family and my friends. I have spent a lot of time on airplanes and traveling to help companies succeed. But at the end of the day, relationships with the people who I care about the most is the most important.
What advice would you like to share with fellow members that you have learned in your career? We aren’t competing against one another – we are building an industry. Let’s work together and help each other.
If you could ask your fellow industry professionals one question, what might it be? What kind of beer do you drink? Can I get you one?
What would you do for a career if you weren’t doing this? I’d probably be selling decking related products!
A little more about Brian: Most importantly, I am a father to my wonderful kids, Colby and Macy. And a best friend to Stacy, Luca and Rocco. I am a die hard Michigan Wolverines Fanatic! GO BLUE! During the winter months, I am a High School and NCAA wrestling official. I travel to several tournaments throughout the country promoting wrestling. I wrestled my entire youth life and this is the way I stay connected. I have a bird dog named Dixie, she is an American Brittany. We love hunting upland game birds in North Dakota, Nebraska, and Colorado. I wish I had more time to do that. Lastly, I try to travel as much as possible. The best trip ever was with my best friend, Stacy, to Africa. We went to Botswana for a couple different safari trips, as well as, South Africa. We plan to do more trips in the future.
Connect with Western Sky Designs online:
Member Name: Jason Durante
Company Name: Durante Home Exteriors
Position: President / Owner
Member Category: Builder
Location: Irondale, AL
What inspired you to join NADRA? As a deck builder I stand behind the quality of my work. Our decks aren’t just built to code, we exceed industry standards. NADRA represents the same quality and ideals.
When did you first get involved with this industry? 25 years ago
What was the first thing you ever built? A Dog House! It had siding and a shingled roof.
We want to get to know you, please tell us a little about your business: Durante Home Exteriors was established in 2001. I had been working in the industry for many years, and wanted to build a company customers would trust and return to for years to come. Decking, both Composite and Pressure Treated, account for approximately one-tenth of our business and we average 75 decks per year. Durante’s specialty is windows and doors, but my first love is decks!
How do you define success? RESPECT, of my employees, customers and peers.
What advice would you like to share with fellow members that you have learned in your career? Do it right the first time!
What would you do for a career if you weren’t doing this? Fisherman
A little more about Jason: My fiancé is Ada. I have two sons, Joshua and Jacob, a daughter, Dominique, all of whom work with me, plus an adorable granddaughter, Serena and grandson Keaton. I also have a French Bulldog named Titan.
When not working I love to play golf, fish and hike.
Connect with Durante Home Exteriors online:
Member Name: Tom Jacques
Company Name: Hickory Dickory Decks
Member Category: Builder
Location: Dundas, Ontario, Canada
When did you first get involved with this industry? 1987
What was the first thing you ever built? A tree fort.
We want to get to know you, please tell us a little about your business: Hickory Dickory Decks started in 1987 in Hamilton Ontario. Today we operate in over 65 cities with franchises and corporate operated local deck companies. We have specialized in low maintenance decking since it was first made. We build over 90 percent low maintenance decks and have since 1995. In 2017 our company will build over 1,000 custom decks.
How do you define success? Success is spending quality time with family and friends and doing something you love that makes the world a better place.
What advice would you like to share with fellow members that you have learned in your career? Build your business and your life living by the Golden rule of treating all people the way you would like to be treated. Pretty simple.
What would you do for a career if you weren’t doing this? Write or teach.
A little more about Tom: I am blessed with a loving wife Sue, and 7 great kids. We love spending time together traveling and at the family cottage.
A note from Tom:
Hello fellow deck builders and deck company owners. Hickory Dickory Decks has been a long standing member of NADRA from it’s very beginning. I think the founding of NADRA has helped get deck builders around the world to start looking at their job as a career and a profession. We create outdoor dining and living rooms where our customers can relax after a hard day, and spend some quality time with family and friends. Just think about all the happiness we have helped spread in each and every backyard. We also provide good, honest, well paying jobs to thousands upon thousands of men and women not only building and designing and selling our beautiful backyard environments but also supplying and transporting all the material to jobs around the world.
I think this October in Nashville, all professional deck builders should come to the 2017 Deck Expo. Enjoy a few days away from construction sites and challenging work situations. To relax with our peers, share some great stories and a cold beverage or two, and congratulate each of us for helping all of our customers to Enjoy Life…Outdoors! See you there.
~ Tom Jacques, President, CEO and Founder of Hickory Dickory Decks.
Connect with Hickory Dickory Decks online:
Member Name: Bill Zinnert
Company Name: Diamond Decks
Member Category: Builder
Location: Severn, MD
When did you first get involved with this industry? 24 years ago
What was the first thing you ever built? A fence at my first house
We want to get to know you, please tell us a little about your business: Diamond Decks has been operating as a deck builder for 24 years now. In 2008 we decided to make a change in the way the business is structured, and decided to narrow our focus to just Decks, Screened Porches, and some patios.
We are constantly refining our best practices to give our customers the best deck they can have.
In 2016, Diamond Decks was in the top 25 contractors in the nation, for sales of Fiberon Decking. We were actually #14 in the nation. We earned an all inclusive paid vacation to St Thomas along with the other top contractors, from Fiberon and the trip was awesome. It was nice feeling, to be recognized by a leading deck board manufacturer.
We were also one of the first deck builders to earn the “Master Deck Professional” certification through NADRA, and sent our field supervisor Dave Ross, through the class at the deck expo, to become certified.
New for 2017- Diamond decks is now a dealer for Equinox louvered roofs and we will be marketing them soon
How do you define success? Success does not necessarily have anything to do with your volume of sales, and the money you make. I believe it has more to do with being able to put together a solid team of people who work together to help other people out, and also being looked up to as someone they can count on to give them the honest truth.
What advice would you like to share with fellow members that you have learned in your career? You get more out of business, when you stop chasing that dollar, and do something that you are passionate about. The money will come.
What would you do for a career if you weren’t doing this? Probably a building inspector? or do some kind of deck design consulting, if there is a thing like that? or maybe a rock and roll star!
A little more about Bill: Hobbies…….. If I am not working on something that has to do with business, which I actually like to do, I would be doing something with music. I play in a band, and if I am not playing somewhere, I am going to support my friends in a number of other bands, and sometimes sit in with them for a few songs.
Or visiting with friend somewhere, usually in Fenwick Del / Ocean City Md – Or having a live band and a party at my house
You can see the music theme……. My wife also goes to all my shows, and supports me in everything I do.
We have two kids 29 & 25. Our son, the oldest is an IT guy and is awesome at doing that, and our daughter is now a practicing Doctor of physical therapy. The good news is, they will both being moving out of the house in the next month. SWEET!!!!
We hope there is another NADRA cook out this year, we had a great time last year
Connect with Diamond Decks online:
NADRA Member Spotlight.
January 2017 Member Spotlight: Robert Lascelle, MyDeck.com