BRAC’s 2019 Large Company Business Growth Award Honoree

To honor standout board members, community leaders, and ambassadors, BRAC distributes annual awards to its investors. This year, award recipients were announced in early April. 

BRAC’s Business Growth Award for a large business was bestowed on Great River Industries this year. The Business Growth Award is presented to a small and large company based on job growth within the Capital Region. The qualifying time period for this year’s applicants was 2017-2019. 

We had the chance to chat with Kenny Lawson, president of Great River Industries, and Stephen Fertitta, business development for Great River Industries, about the success of the business. Read the interview below. 

Why did you choose the Baton Rouge Area as the home for your business? 

Louisiana has announced over $180 billion worth of industrial construction projects since 2012.  The Baton Rouge Area is the hub for these projects. Our field operations office is a strategic location due to the volume of capital and maintenance projects in the seven-parish region along the Mississippi River.   

What opportunities did the Baton Rouge Area provide when it came to starting and growing your business? 

Baton Rouge is the ideal location for skilled and qualified industrial craft labor and management. The sheer amount of construction projects locally attracts skilled labor and management from all over the Gulf Coast region. Also, there is a strong focus locally through organizations like ABC Pelican Chapter and LSU’s Construction Management program for more and more labor and management talent from the Capital Region to stick around for their profession. 

What resources in the Baton Rouge Area have helped your business get to where it is now? 

The workforce to recruit and train skilled craft workers. Also, the demand for our services locally based on the volume of industrial expansions and green field projects over the past three years and the amount of quality suppliers that help us fill these needs.   

Your business has grown tremendously in the past three years. Where do you see your business in the next three years? 

Since the beginning of the company in 2013, we have had the same core values simply stated as “People. Safety. Execution.” The safety and wellbeing of our employees will always come first.  We believe creating an environment where our employees can be successful will be the driving force of our company’s continued growth and success. 

Over the next three years, we will strive for constant growth of our customer base and ensuring our name continues to be synonymous with the highest quality of industrial construction. 

What would you say to someone considering the Baton Rouge Area as a home for their business? 

Baton Rouge, as the stateCapital, has several key assets to help any company be successful, including two major universities, a number of technical colleges, craft training centers, and a diverse selection of suppliers. The people, food, and tailgating aren’t too bad either. 

Morgan is the Marketing Manager for the Baton Rouge Area Chamber. In her role, she manages writing organizational publications and materials, oversees BRAC’s social media and blog, and coordinates timelines for all internal marketing projects.

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