Huckestein has been a respected name in the mechanical contracting industry for nearly 70 years.
The company began operations in 1948 as the C. L. Fallon Corporation and was primarily a sheet metal fabrication and installation company. In 1978, James E. Huckestein, an active member of Steamfitters Local Union 449, expanded the business under his name to include mechanical contracting in addition to sheet metal work.
Ten years later, with the addition of partner Jim Jennings, the company entered a phase of aggressive growth, adding full HVAC, energy management, refrigeration, controls and service to its portfolio. In 1994, a plumbing division was added to accommodate additional customer requirements. In 2004, Messrs. Huckestein and Jennings sold the company, and the new owners explored new avenues of work, increasing capabilities for project size and scope.
The economic downturn of 2009 created significant challenges for the company, however. The country experienced the worst economy since the Great Depression. Margins started shrinking, banks weren’t lending, costs were increasing, and work was slow. Previous management had not prepared for lean times, and the owners decided to sell the company.
On January 1, 2010, Huckestein Mechanical Services, Inc. was purchased by Wendy Staso, who re-envisioned and resurrected the company to become a thriving small business with steady margins and growth. As an HVAC industry newcomer, she was not constrained by history or how things “should be” done.
Nothing was off limits. She instituted a new culture of discipline and integrity that permeates every facet of the business today, focusing on the company’s core competencies and strategically outsourcing unprofitable service lines. She expects professionalism, respect and honesty in her dealings with others and offers the same in return. After laboring under a severely damaged brand, employees are once again proud to say they work for Huckestein. It was, and continues to be, a time of unprecedented change yielding record improvement.