Skip to main content

Construction Firm Directs Its Focus

March 5, 2013 - The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Vinings construction executive Randall Redding doesn’t build single-family homes, so his company has weathered the recession better than most.

And the 58-year-old owner of R.K. Redding Construction thinks many of his friends in the industry who’ve suffered may have reason to smile again soon. Housing prices are rising, homes are selling and real estate agents are starting to hammer more "for sale" signs into front yards.

He sees residential activity as a key economic indicator for his $50 million Bremen-based company, which builds churches, schools, factories, health care structures and government facilities, among other things.

Redding, who started out busing dishes in his family's restaurant, has learned to read the tea leaves that are important for his company. Churches, for example, launch building projects in downturns because the pews fill up with jittery people, so they need more space, he said.


Q: How have you done in this economy?

A: Our revenues have fluctuated between $40 million and $80 million during the past five years. We are tracking to improve from $50 million last year, which is good. We haven't had to let people go. When the economy goes down, you have to make a decision whether or not you invest in your people. Do you want to lay off good people or batten down the hatches and still have them when times get better? We have decided to hang on to our people. If you start laying people off, you are a different company when it's (the recession) is over.


Q: How many people do you have?

A: About 65, but we hire a lot of subcontractors.


Q: Do you think the recession is really over?

A: The first sign of recovery is taking hold. Since interest rates are at historical lows, people are going to take advantage of long-term low rates. I think the banks want to loosen up on credit. They made it hard to get a loan and now I think things are going back in the other direction.


Q: What has been your biggest business challenge over the past few years?

A: The smaller pool of work. There is less project opportunity out there and more competition. You just have to do a better job negotiating the projects. We have not been in the position of having to depend on borrowing money to make it through the recession.


Q: How have you survived the tough times?

A: Thankfully, we do a lot of public sector work — hospitals, medical, churches, and we also do construction management.


Q: What’s that?

A: If a client calls and says, "we want you to manage a project — a church or in industry," whoever it might be, we help. We work with the owner and design a project, put the project out for competitive bids to subcontractors. We are more involved in putting nuts and bolts together, rather than just building it. We help people through the whole scary process.


Q: Tell me more about this part of the business.

A: A lot of times we will get hired by the owner to look at the site to see if we could identify any potential problems that might exist. There could be a wetlands issue. Water is more expensive to deal with than rock. We look at environmental effects on lakes, streams. Sometimes there are gravesites you have to deal with. Unsuitable soil is another issue.


Q: What have been some of your projects?

A: We were hired by the Paulding County school system to be construction manager and we finished a bond referendum 32 percent under budget. They were able to build 300,000 square feet of additional new buildings with the savings. We build churches, such as First Baptist in Douglasville, an addition to Midway Presbyterian in Powder Springs. We’ve done projects for WellStar in Marietta, Harbin Clinic in Cedartown, Tanner Family Health Center in Tallapoosa, and the $17 million Trinka Davis Veterans Village in Carrollton.


Q: Do you build factories?

A: We’ve done work for Southwire, Honda, Yamaha, Fitel/Lucent Technologies, DieTech Engineering and others. Current projects include renovation of an elementary school in Fairmount, one in Hiram, a high school in Stockbridge and a health care building in Newnan.


Q: You do work all over the state, it seems, but aren’t you headquartered in Bremen?

A: Yes. I commute from Vinings about four times a week. We are licensed in Georgia and five other states, and a lot of our work is in West Georgia.


Q: You have deep roots in West Georgia, don't you?

A: My mom worked in the mills until our family bought a local restaurant. The industrial leaders would eat there and I got to know them. I was the first in my family to decide to attend college, but I had trouble getting accepted. One of the industrial leaders made a phone call on my behalf to Auburn, because he saw what a hard worker I was. Busing tables and serving customers changed my life.


Q: What else are you involved in?

A: We built the Mill Town Music Hall in Bremen and it has been successful. We get people from Atlanta, Alabama, all over. People have found us. It’s really exciting, two minutes off I-20. A good friend of mine is a record executive in Nashville and he helped us bring in some big names such as Toby Keith, the Oak Ridge Boys and Amy Grant.


Q: Who owns it?

A: My wife and I own it. It opened earlier this year. We built it to be home to quality entertainment, hosting contemporary Christian music, country and bluegrass concerts. The facility can seat 1,000 people. It is a part of the effort to revitalize our community.


Meet Randall Redding
Job: Founder, president and CEO of R.K. Redding Construction
Age: 58
Family: Married with two children and four grandchildren
Lives: Vinings
Education: Auburn University, B.S. building construction
Hobby: Music, singing in church choir
Philosophy: Do the very best you can with the job you are given


This article is copyrighted and first appeared in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. It is reprinted here by permission.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Cliff Cole, Paulding County School District Superintendent

As the Superintendent of Paulding County School District, Cliff Cole is a man wearing many hats. Through the years, Cliff taught physical education for six years in Cobb County, as well as coached high school baseball, football and wrestling. He spent six years as an assistant principal and then as principal at Shelton Elementary, prior joining the Paulding County district office in 2003. Since then, he has served as the middle school operations director, county athletic director and a variety of operations positions – from assistant superintendent to deputy superintendent. In April of 2010, Cliff was named to his current role as superintendent.

We met with Cliff for a short Q&A on his role, accomplishments and future goals.

Current job and responsibilities.

As Superintendent, it’s like I am the acting Chief Operating Officer. I’m responsible for every decision that’s made within the school district. Basically every aspect of the district from the day-to-day operations, budget, vi…

It’s Hot Out There! Be Safe!

All around Georgia, friends and family are enjoying their summers. Whether it is spending a day at the water park, exploring the city, or a nice relaxed day at home, everyone is taking advantage of the warmer weather and remembering why we are affectionately known as “Hotlanta.” As we plan our summer workweeks, we must be cognizant of the dangers that come along with the longer and hotter days.

According to a report conducted by the Atlanta headquartered Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) extreme heat is the leading cause of weather related deaths in the United States. The U.S. Environment Protection Agency defines extreme heat as “periods of summertime weather that are substantially hotter and/or more humid than typical for a given location at that time of year.” These events can also cause other health problems such as cramps, heat exhaustion, and heat stroke, which can become potentially fatal. Fortunately for us, heat-related illnesses are preventable.

As an active me…

Interview with University of West Georgia President, Dr. Kyle Marrero

Q: What is the day to day like for you as UWG President?

A: It’s interesting to be a president of a university in today’s environment and it’s not what someone might think it is. It certainly encompasses many facets with the belief that transforming lives via educational obtainment being at the center. I think the most successful presidents are the ones that always remind their administrators, faculty and staff that any strategic planning or implementation of any actions or initiates need to be reviewed through a filter and lens of student success. What will this mean to focus and to allow our students to be the most successful - not only here as they enter our gates - but also beyond our gates. Our job is to prepare the students to be ready for an ever-complex world. The reality of the job is interesting, because it’s a 16- hour-a-day job, which I love and feel incredibly blessed to be a part of. And, there are multiple constituencies to serve and to help align, which can be challeng…

West Georgia Habitat Changes Lives

Habitat for Humanity builds more than homes, it provides a new beginning to deserving people. Since 1976, Habitat has helped 6.8 million people find strength, stability and independence through safe, decent and affordable shelter.

R. K. Redding Construction organized the West Georgia Habitat for Humanity home build in Bremen last fall. Twenty companies that work in the West Georgia area came together as one to build a new home for a deserving family in Haralson County.

This “community” of volunteers not only made a significant difference for the area, according to recent studies, employees are more satisfied with their jobs when they are allowed to take a day for community service. In addition, 59% of Americans are more likely to buy a product associated with a corporate-nonprofit partnership.

Beyond the obvious of doing good deeds in the communities in which you serve, it has been proven that companies which practice corporate social responsibility will significantly outperform their …

Dr. John Zauner - Executive Director for the Georgia School Superintendents Association

We recently spent some time with Dr. Zauner to learn more about his current role, as well as to hear stories about his days on the Secret Service detail for former President George H.W. Bush.

Q: Let’s begin with you sharing a little about your background and your interests.

A: I was involved in my early days in athletics in high school and college and enjoyed that experience. It taught me a lot about teamwork and working with others.

I moved into the education realm after graduating college and started out as a teacher of special needs students. I worked my way through the education system to three different school systems and ultimately became superintendent of the Carroll County School System in 2003.

As far as my passions, I love to bird hunt and raise bird dogs, as well as love anything with a motor and wheels; which includes motorcycles and cars. I also enjoy the beach and boats, so I have a wide variety of interests.

Q:What was your role prior to your current position?

A: As supe…