As a builder who had difficulty finding a concrete contractor who could install foundations when he needed them, Dennis Purinton took matters into his own hands. Purinton Builders Inc. opened in 1984 and his son, Michael, joined the business full time in 1998. With a combined 55 years of experience in the concrete industry between father and son, this contractor is ready to take on jobs that most wouldn't even dream of.

While most contractors constantly compete with their competitors over jobs, Purinton believes it is important to help one another out as well as share knowledge. With only a four-person crew, many jobs require more personnel than Purinton can deploy. In those cases, they combine forces with others in the industry, and usually Purinton returns the favor and shares his experience in ways to accomplish jobs more efficiently with fewer people.

Purinton believes there are two ways for small contractors to thrive. First is taking on unusual jobs, and second is increasing the volume of jobs. Purinton chose to take on unusual jobs that other contractors wouldn't because his experience gives him confidence.

"Every job for us is unique. I don't know if there is any one job I could single out and say it is distinctive," says Purinton. "If someone calls me tomorrow and wants to do something unique, we have the equipment, resources, and knowledge to respond on short notice."

Purinton converted to aluminum forms while everyone else in his area used wood. They were among the first to use robotic total stations and boom trucks to move their forms. The contractor focuses on diversifying its operations, staying on top of technology and education by sharing knowledge with industry leaders.

Purinton is currently president of the Concrete Foundations Association and sits on three ACI Committees. Over the past 15 years, he's worked with industry associations because he wants to do everything he can to educate others, including inspectors countrywide.

"The ability for all of us to continue to prosper in this great industry greatly depends on the continued growth of the trade associations and their ability to continue to educate and assist even the smallest of companies," says Purinton.