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Roofing rises

image L-R: Roland H. Gonzales Jr. and Bryan Gonzales, Roland’s Roofing, take pride in their San Antonio roots, and were presented with a plaque from the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

SAN ANTONIO - Since the hailstorm last year, residents of San Antonio may be seeing Roland’s Roofing vehicles a lot more in their neighborhoods, even though the contractor’s workload is usually split evenly between residential and commercial.

    As the third generation in the family business, Bryan Gonzales observes that due to the damage from last April’s hail, their crews have been doing more residential than ever while maintaining their commercial side.
    “It’s really been monumental,” says Bryan, noting that they’ve always kept busy through referrals and word of mouth. “As soon as that hail storm hit, we were inundated, booked out a year almost right away with residential work. We have been taken aback, and it was really all hands on deck.”
    One of Bryan’s main objectives coming into the business in 2009 was to help make his father’s life a bit easier. He wanted his dad, Roland Gonzales Jr., to be able to enjoy shaking hands and have some relief from the day-to-day operations. But since the hailstorm, his dad has become more involved again. Though his dad is still busy, Bryan notes that it’s nice working with him.
    A natural entrepreneur, Roland Gonzales Sr. founded Roland’s Roofing in 1970 after serving in the Korean War. As the business grew, his only son, Roland Gonzales Jr., joined the company in 1978, after earning his degree in biology from St. Mary’s University, because of the need that his father had at the time. Bryan’s aunt, Cookie Gehring, came into the ranks later to help manage the books.
    When Roland Jr. came on board, they only did roofs, but he received so much demand for other services that he slowly grew their services to all things exterior, including siding installation, carport installation, gutters and downspouts, and windows. Then, about 10 years ago, their customers began to ask them about interior services, so he opened up a sister company called Alamo Handyman.
    Much like his father before him, Bryan came into the business to help his dad. Though he worked at Roland’s Roofing during the summers through high school, he studied music and marketing at UTSA and went along his own path for a while. Then, his father offered him an opportunity to try to grow the business more and help create a company culture, which he has been doing. Bryan feels the company is part of the fabric of the community and with its Hispanic and military roots, he notes that the heart of Texas is near and dear to them.
    Based in San Antonio with a satellite office in Austin, Roland’s Roofing is a commercial and residential roofing com-pany that offers a variety of exterior services. –mh

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Mary Hazlett mary@constructionnews.net