Editor’s Note: Chief Executive is kicking off a new annual tradition this year by celebrating every sizable (over $100 million in annual revenues) standalone company turning 100 in 2023. Check out the rest of this year’s class for tips, insights and, above all else, the inspiration you need to keep going….and going.
BRADBURY STAMM CONSTRUCTION
HQ: Albuquerque, New Mexico
Revenues: ~$118 million
The name Bradbury Stamm is virtually synonymous with construction in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where the company has built many of the city’s most prominent buildings. Among the more notable are the Centennial Engineering Center, Isotopes Park, the ABQ BioPark Aquarium, the Albuquerque Museum and the Casino at the Downs.
Its origins, however, were humble. Carpenter and former millwright O.G. Bradbury started as a contractor specializing in “sash, doors, frames, screens and cabinets.” He landed his first commercial job—the Highland Park Bandstand—shortly thereafter. Over the next two decades, his projects grew in size and scope, and in 1946, Bradbury was able to hire his son-in-law, a civil engineer named Bob Stamm, to join O.G. Bradbury Contractor.
By 1958, Stamm was ready to take on a more prominent role in growing the company. Bradbury named him vice president and added “& Stamm” to the company name, and the duo led the company to become a major force in New Mexico. Embarking on project after project that would alter the city, Bradbury Stamm continued to follow a mission statement in keeping with its founder’s relationship-based approach to construction: “To build a better community, be sustainable by profit and growth, care for our environment and create good relationships with our owners, community and subcontractors.”
It also built a track record overcoming a challenge that derails many family businesses: the leadership handoff. After taking the helm from Bradbury in 1974, Stamm recruited and prepped his future successor, James King, who, in his turn, hired and trained up his daughter Cynthia Schultz, who has led the company as CEO since 2014. Under her tenure, Bradbury Stamm became the largest woman-owned business in New Mexico. As with most construction businesses, its business waxes and wanes with the economy, says Schultz, who credits the company’s legacy values for its longevity.
Schultz views the company as very much a family business, albeit one where leaders became family rather than the other way around. “I think my father feels like Bob Stamm adopted him when he took over,” she told the Albuquerque Journal. “And we have a strong legacy of long-term team members, with whom I can’t wait to see what we accomplish over the next two decades.”