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A generational trade

image L-R: Rodney “Rod” and Mical Shotwell at a fishing trip last year in Alaska.

DALLAS/FT WORTH - Sandblasting and painting is in the Shotwell blood. Ask Mical Shotwell, COO of Shotwell & Son Inc. The company started in 1956 by his grandfather and great grandfather.

 

 

 

 

 

    Shotwell tells us the company started in his great grandfather’s backyard, which is astonishing to know that they’ve “grown to a facility that is over seven acres in size.”
    But, before today Shotwell remembers coming on board 15 years ago. He started working with his father, Rodney “Rod” at the age of 16-17. “I learned a lot and I was really self-taught,” said Shotwell.
    As time took over, it was also time for his father’s retirement. This meant Shotwell would be stepping up to the plate and taking things into his own hands. And, so he did.
    A tradition Shotwell keeps going within the company involves his grandfather’s smoker that was built in the ‘70s. For decades during their traditional company Christmas party they would use the same smoker to cook briskets and hams. To paint a picture in our heads of what the smoker looks like Shotwell said, “It’s big about the size of a pick up truck.” Oh, and all the cooking is done themselves. “Family ran business and homegrown food too,” said Shotwell.
    He believes that there are not many family owned businesses still around in the Fort Worth area. He shared his thoughts on being a father and son business. “We’ve got a really good valuable reputation and that means a lot to us.”
    Even though they’ve been in the construction industry since ’56, Shotwell & Son is a multifaceted contractor. They focus on both the industrial and commercial construction markets.
    The company just completed the renovation of a 40,000sf hangar from the floor to the ceiling. It was a “pretty good challenge,” but the team managed to get it done on time “of course.” They painted the ceiling, walls and floor. “There was sheetrock involved with it also from floor to ceiling,” Shotwell adds.
    A key point Shotwell highlights is the success they have experienced. “It comes with a lot of hard work, a lot of blood, sweat and tears along the way.”
    For Shotwell the foremost reason that they are successful is they have been blessed. “God has been great to us and we have to give him all the glory. He’s shown us his blessing,” said Shotwell.
    The Shotwells are still expanding not only their business, but also their employee base. Right now they have an estimated 20 employees. Shotwell says they want to add more paint crews as work increases. 
    He’s never seen this much work.  “That last three [years] have been the busiest I’ve ever seen.”
    Shotwell’s father Rodney taught him how to work hard. He expressed, “Those are some things that I always take with me and teach my son the same things my dad taught me.”
    So, is there a fifth generation Shotwell? Yes, but we learn he is only 2 years old. Even though he has ways to go Shotwell adds, “He does, but it’s in our blood.”
    When that day comes Shotwell looks forward to working with his son.
    Each generation of Shotwells have left their mark, not because they are sandblasters and painters, moreover because they are dedicated to their legacy.
    Shotwell & Sons Inc. is a commercial and industrial sandblasting and painting company in Fort Worth. –lv


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Lexie Velasquez lexie@constructionnews.net