August 10,2014 Newry, Maine – The Associated General Contractors of Maine presented Bob “RJ” Grondin with the Major Achievement in Construction Award Saturday evening. RJ is the founder of RJ Grondin & Sons Construction headquartered in Gorham, Maine. During the 1950s he worked on his family cattle farm in Gorham. He learned quickly that other opportunities existed in the area and began delivering loam and other materials using farm equipment. He and his brother Phil later encouraged their father to leave the farming business for construction.
In 1959, the Grondins officially opened their doors and quickly became a leader in the industry. RJ was known for his ability to solve problems in the field using many of the skills he had learned on the farm. In the 1980s, the firm had double-digit growth reaching 200 employees. That growth did not deter Bob from maintaining one of the best safety records in the business and they were recognized for that effort with two AGC of America safety awards. That tradition continues today as the team of 150 employees has performed the incredible feat of working more than 2,025,000 hours with no lost time injuries.
“RJ Grondin & Sons safety record and the celebration of those achievements are attributable to the leadership provided in the first generation of owners that RJ has carried forward today. RJ’s leadership extends beyond its own company doors and proves an shining example for all Maine businesses,” said AGC Maine CEO Matthew Marks.
The Major Achievement in Construction Award history dates back to 1975. Past winners include Maine construction legends like Bud Cianchette, Al Bancroft, Jack Kelley, John Bridge, and more. The award winner is selected from a pool of nominations made by Maine contractors to a Committee at AGC Maine. The Committee reviews criteria such as the impact the person has made on the industry, as well as individual achievements and the principles of skill, responsibility, and integrity.
The award is presented at the AGC Maine Summer Outing every August. This year the celebration happened at Sunday River Resort’s North Peak Lodge at 2,100 feet. AGC Maine’s Senior Vice President Tim Ouellette presented the award to RJ after dinner at the Peak with 145 contractors from around Maine in attendance. AGC America’s President Al Landes joined members for the weekend outing. Herb Sargent, Jon Shaw, and Walt Stinson all took the podium to share personal stories and recognize RJ’s lifetime of achievement, leadership, and the impact he had on Maine’s construction industry over the last 55 years.
In accepting this prestigious award, RJ showed everyone in the room why he was this year’s winner by delivering a clear message “As I look out over the room, I want to tell each of you that it is your time – you are the next generation. It is now your job to go get it done like we did.”
While he officially retired back in 2001, RJ continues to prove his dedication to the company he built and the industry he has led by working during the busy season from 5 AM to 5 PM in support of the next generation of Grondins that now manage the company. “It has been a pleasure and honor to have had the chance to work with you and for you and watching you build something amazing,” said Executive Vice-President and RJ’s son Ken Grondin.
Chartered in 1951, the Associated General Contractors (AGC) of Maine is the state’s largest construction industry trade association. The Association maintains an office in Augusta and has more than 185 members statewide. Member companies include general contractors, sub-contractors, and service and supply providers. For more information visit www.agcmaine.org.
Photo: L to R AGC America President Al Landes, Bob “RJ” Grondin, AGC Maine President Charlie Cianchette. Photo Credit Andrew Davis.
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