Framed to Perfection
Veteran-owned Alpine Construction rises above the rest with honor, integrity, compassion and service
Alpine Construction, Inc., based out of Marathon, Wisconsin, is a veteran-owned subcontractor specializing in commercial wood-framed building projects. Although relatively small in size with a good mix of employees and go-to subs, the firm, under the leadership of its founder and sole owner, David Jellings, has large-scale capabilities, able to keep up production while never interfering with the quality and integrity of the structures.
Jellings, who served in the U.S. Army, National Guard and Army Reserve during his 23-year military career, enjoys his place in the field right beside his expert team, rather than merely sitting behind a desk. Additionally, he strives to maintain steady training for his crew in order to build stronger teams with more capabilities, making them more efficient and productive.
Commercial Niche and Turnkey Capabilities
Officially formed a little over two years ago, Alpine Construction has evolved in that short time from handling mainly residential projects to where it is today, targeting large commercial framing projects 40,000 square feet and larger, including hotels and motels; apartments and condominiums; retail store and mixed-use buildings; assisted living facilities; medical offices; office buildings; restaurants; storage facilities/warehouses, and more.
Alpine Construction’s main focus right now is wood framing, although looking ahead, Jellings notes that they will eventually add more services, including roof davit systems and siding. He is committed, though, to growing the company in a strategic way so as not to get too big, too quickly, remarking, “I’ve been very fortunate. I have an abundance when it come to my labor force, where a lot of contractors are short on labor. We’ve achieved that by working with the right partner at the right time to keep our great connections. I’m enjoying that position, plus I’m willing to travel, which really opens up opportunities. Right now, I’m in the Twin Cities doing three big jobs, and then I’ll be back in Wisconsin. We’re very flexible.”
He adds, “I believe in being able to provide a turnkey framing package through strong partnerships with our suppliers of components and lumber. That means I can provide both material and labor for that job, not just the labor anymore, which keeps us competitive with the other larger firms in our field. Not to mention, we pride ourselves on our customer service.”
Diverse Experience Yields Results
Jellings credits his wide-ranging construction experience with influencing how he approaches his business. He says, “Even in the military I did construction. I’ve been in construction since I was 16 years old and worked my way up from being a carpenter to a foreman to a superintendent. I went to school and then worked in estimating and large-scale project management. I actually gave up a very nice project management job to go out on my own…and I haven’t looked back.”
He adds, “By having that diverse background of project management as well as having been a superintendent at one time, I’m able to identify some of the problems that we run into, which is a big help for any GC if you’re moving through a job. I don’t run through it with just the blinders of a carpenter or a framer, per se. That’s something that really differentiates us.”
His military experience, too, has had a profound effect. He shares, “I adapted my leadership mentality to now serve my team and my customers. In the military, you get the men you get. You don’t get to choose. Plus, you have to learn how to motivate people and be productive because you’re going to fail if you don’t. I’ve taken that philosophy and incorporated that into how we operate our business. I’m in the field on every project—every day or every other day. By having that presence, along with being able to know each team member’s strengths and weaknesses, I’ve been able to improve efficiencies and productivity.”
The proof is in the results. While many construction companies have experienced a slowdown due to world events, Alpine Construction has been busy, recently finishing work on a hotel in Eagan, Minnesota, and now constructing a luxury apartment building in upscale St. Louis Park, Minnesota. “We haven’t stopped,” Jellings says.