Presented by CEI Group

Year: 2019 (Page 1 of 2)

Firestone’s 2019 Partner in Quality

Firestone has recognized CEI for our outstanding efforts in quality roofing installations.

The Partner in Quality award is presented to contractors who achieved the highest levels of roofing quality by meeting or exceeding the following criteria during the previous year:

  1. Install at least eight warranted Firestone roofs in 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018
  2. Maintain at least million square feet of Firestone roofs under warranty
  3. Achieve an annual QIR of 1.0 or less

The Quality Incidence Rating (QIR) offers a simple but compelling tool to promote roofing quality. Firestone has recognized our high-quality standards and rewarded us with a plaque for our achievement as a 2019Partner inQuality.

CEI Sponsorship: 2019 Hudson Mills Old Power Club Tractor Pull

CEI is proud to pull another win at the 2019 HMOPC Annual Tractor pull. For four years, CEI has helped sponsor the Hudson Mills Old Power Club in their annual tractor pull. With the sponsorship, the company gets entry into the sponsorship pull. Matt Meyer, a roofing superintendent here at CEI, participated in the pull on Friday, May 31. He successfully brought home another win. His win makes CEI the 4-time reigning champs. Last year, Nick Bosworth pulled and earned CEI’s third win in a row. The year before that Ron Skrzypek pulled and in 2016, JB Hampton participated in the first year.

CEI is proud to be a part of this fun and exciting sponsorship. Thanks to Matt Meyer, CEI gets to hang another plack in the office for everyone to see.

Dunk For Duke!

CEI is hosting a charity fundraiser for Duke Medical Center on June 8th, 2019. The event is in on honor of CEI’s late founder, John C. Cook. John passed away on April 24th, 2017 after a hard fought 14 year battle with prostate cancer. John and his brother stated CEI Michigan, John was the first full-time employee of Cook Roofing, Inc. John was passionate about the company and the roofing industry and strived to improve other people’s lives by sharing his eternal glass-half-full attitude. At the end of his career, John managed the international division of the roofing company. the projects took him around the globe and he loved the adventures while also leading the roofers on their foreign explorations. Although John loved working, he retired from the company in 2014.

Duke Cancer Institute was a big part of John’s battle! As apart of there 50th year celebration they wanted to contribute to the success of the Cancer institute that helped John over his 14 year journey.

50 Years and Counting!

George and John Cook are the founders of CEI Michigan, LLC. Their father Cecil Cook also worked in the roofing industry for most of his adult life. CEI slowly developed from a “weekend warrior” side job business into a staple in the commercial roofing and architectural sheet metal industry. This year, CEI is celebrating the 50th year in business.

After Cecil’s retirement from the roofing industry, he started to pick up small cash projects on the weekends. With the help of George and his wife Barbra, they coordinated crews and materials for both residential and small commercial projects. Over the years, these side jobs began to grow into a small business, which ultimately became the CEI we have today. In 1969, George set out to incorporate the company – making Cook Roofing, Inc. official in May of that year. Cook Roofing continued to run as a part-time operation out of the basement of the Cook home while George worked as a salesman during the week. However, after being incorporated, the business grew even faster, and it began to take up more and more time.

In 1972, John Cook moved home from Germany after being stationed there as an army officer. Upon his return, he joined in the Cook Roofing as its first full-time employee. As the business grew and took up more time, George began to focus his more of his efforts on the CEI; eventually leading to him losing his sales position. After that, Cook Roofing became a full-time job for the brothers. That same year, Cook Roofing established a relationship with Clark Construction.  They worked on the State Hospital in Howell – a re-roof and new addition project. This building was one of the first large projects that Cook Roofing accomplished in its early years. Following that in 1974, the brothers decided to eliminate residential work from their specialties. “We had a lot of trouble getting payment from residential customers. We could spend more time bidding and less time collecting if we got rid of it,” says George. Since then CEI has remained focused on commercial projects.

In 1978, Cook Roofing out grew the basement, and the company purchased its first office located on Industrial Road in Howell, MI. Cook Roofing also began to explore different types of roofing systems. The search for innovation brought them to Trocal, now known as Sika-Trocal. Trocal developed the first ever single-ply roofing system. After speaking with Trocal, George and John tested the product for themselves by installing the new system on their office roof.  Then Cook Roofing started offering this system to its customers as a way to cut costs and time spent on the job. Customers started to prefer the product, and Cook Roofing became pioneers in the single-ply market. Over the next couple of years, Cook Roofing was deployed by Trocal to install their product all over the country.

Beginning in Colorado, Cook Roofing bid a group of K-12 schools that were looking for a Trocal installer. After being awarded the job, Cook Roofing established relationships in the Denver area and started expanding across the country. At this time, Cook Roofing changed their name to Cook Enterprises Incorporated, eventually becoming simply CEI. From there CEI opened branches across the country. CEI West Roofing Company, Inc was started in Denver in 1977. CEI Southwest including the Texas and Arizona offices was launched in 1981. Last, in 1982, CEI developed CEI Florida, Inc., which included two offices in Florida. The Cook brothers remained actively involved in the company, but each office had their own partner and manager who ran the branch.

Throughout the ’80s Trocal became the preferred system by all general contractors. Being experienced in the system, CEI was able to create partnerships with more prominent companies such as GM. These partnerships helped CEI to become widely known for their high profile and intricate work and made all of the offices strong.  Along with the expansion into multiple offices across the country.  In the early 90’s CEI began adopting other modern roofing systems, including EPDM systems.  Also in the early 90’s CEI went through a reconsolidation period closing offices that had been in Iowa and Illinois as well as the Michigan operation which was reopened as a part of the Texas Company called CEI Southwest.

As the ’90s came to a close, many construction companies were participating in roll-ups. As roll-ups grew in popularity, the roofing industry began to adopt the model. By 1999, CEI was made up of three companies with six offices located in Florida (Debary and Jacksonville, FL), Texas (Dallas, TX and Howell, MI) and Colorado (Denver, CO and Sacramento, CA). These three companies were sold in a stock sale to generalRoofing (yes, spelled just like that). generalRoofing was one of the roofing roll-up companies that were buying up commercial roofing companies across the nation. CEI was a part of the company until 2005.

In 2005, Tecta America purchased generalRoofing’s assets.  Tecta America, another large roll-up was uninterested in the union companies, leaving out CEI and other Michigan offices. In that same year, CEI bought back the assets of the operation in Michigan via CEI Group, LLC. The buyback formed the partnership of George, John, Eric, Rob, and Kristine. They continued operations and grew the business. CEI has since strengthened its sheet metal department and service department to complement its commercial roofing work on large and complex projects. Unfortunately, John developed health problems that lead to his retirement in the fall of 2014. Since then the partnership of George, Eric, Rob, and Kristine remains strong and has continued to be able to grow the business and the long list of high profile customers that CEI works for.

CEI had long ago outgrown its original building in Howell, MI. The search for a new headquarters started in late 2013. In 2014 CEI found an office space with a large pole barn that it could renovate to meet its needs. CEI’s operations moved to the Whitmore Lake/Hamburg area and hosted the official open house on August 28th, 2015. Since the purchase of this building, CEI has continued to expand the yard. In 2016 a cold storage building on the far end of the property was added. And in late 2018 CEI started an addition to the warehouse to create additional space for the sheet metal shop. 

CEI continues to innovate and grow the company, focusing efforts on complex projects and developing entire building envelope expertise.

Celebrating National Roofing Week!

(Whitmore Lake, MI)-  To raise awareness of the significance of roofs to every home and business, stress the value of professional roofing contractors, and promote the good deeds of the industry, CEI Michigan, LLC will recognize National Roofing Week taking place June 2-8.

Organized by the National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA), National Roofing Week is a reminder that the roof is one of the most critical components of every structure. It is the first line of defense against natural elements, such as rain, snow or wind, yet it is often taken for granted until it falls into disrepair.

National Roofing Week enables roofing professionals to engage with their communities and inform the public about the essential role roofs and professional roofing contractors play in every community, as well as the importance about making informed decisions about maintaining or replacing any roof system.

 CEI has been in the roofing industry for 50 years. National Roofing Week gives CEI the chance to celebrate the industry that supports the families that work in it. During National Roofing Week CEI Michigan, LLC will be creating awareness through social media. Viewers can see CEI’s post of the week on Facebook, Twitter, and its Roofing Madness Blog.  These posts will include focuses on how CEI trains their employees, charitable giving, signature projects, and celebration of the work that we do. Also on social media following the week viewers can see all the happening of our 50th-year festival including, games, music, food and our “Dunk for Duke” Charity Fundraiser in memory of John C. Cook, one of our founders who passed away two years ago from prostate cancer. Duke Medical Center was a massive part of his long and courageous journey battling cancer, and CEI is proud to support them.

“We think it’s important to recognize our employees and the hard work they do for CEI and CEI’s customers. This year’s roofing week is extra special because of our 50th year in business and celebrating the employees who have been with us for a long time.” – Eric C. Cook, President at CEI Michigan, LLC

Additional information about National Roofing Week can be found at www.nrca.net/National-Roofing-Week.

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 CEI Group has earned a reputation as one of the country’s most progressive roofing and architectural sheet metal firms. They pioneered single ply roofs in the late ’70s and ’80s, were one of the first roofing companies to maintain their sheet metal shop.  By the ’90s, CEI’s sheet metal department started to install metal wall panel projects. Today, CEI is leading the way in newer roofing and architectural sheet metal systems such as green roofing projects and composite and insulated wall panel projects. As a union-shop, CEI is also known for its trade craftsmanship. Some of the lost art and techniques for working on architecturally-challenging or historical elements have been preserved and passed down from experienced roofing and sheet metal pros. CEI customers appreciate the company’s disciplined project management, communication during the project, and the ability to meet challenging deadlines consistently.

Career Opportunities: Operating Engineers Local Union 324 Apprenticeship Application

CEI has and always will be a big supporter of the trades and career education in any of the trades field. Being a business that relies on these skilled workers to keep our business running we are constantly trying to promote job training, apprenticeship and career opportunities.

CEI is partnered with three unions in the southeastern Michigan area. Those three unions include Roofers Local Union 149, Metal Workers Local Union 80, and Operating Engineers Local Union 324. Local Union 324 supports heavy equipment operators and heavy equipment technicians. CEI uses this union to staff crane operators and semi-truck drivers to assist on the high profile and complex projects that CEI takes on.

An operator is a key role in CEI’s team. Without them, CEI would not be able to innovate and construct the highest of quality for there projects. Operators keep CEI’s jobs running smooth and on-time by allowing flexibility to the schedule. Having our own trucks and cranes allows CEI to be autonomous and not always having to worry about rentals and subcontractors to do the work. Along with owning our own equipment, credit goes to the well-trained operators that CEI hires from local 324. CEI is excited to promote a great opportunity for anyone looking into working in this trade.

June 10th- June 14th, 2019 Local Union 324 is taking applications for there Apprenticeship program. This opportunity is provided for anyone 17 or older with a high school diploma or GED certificate. Other requirements include a valid Michigan drivers license and reliable transportation. Applications are limited and are available on a first come, first serve basis.

For more information:
https://www.oe324.org/training/2019application/

New Shop Additions

Business growth is the process of improving some measure of an enterprise’s success. Over the last 5 year CEI has been innovating, growing and expanding. One of the biggest growths has been in our sheet metal department. This growth has shown in CEI’s expansion in the yard.

  In the early 70s, CEI began to innovate in the sheet metal side of construction. They saw that this was another division of the business that could help them expand and grow into a versatile business. Since then there has been the exponential growth of this department. It is the highlight of much of our best work. In 2015, CEI moved the company out of the small office and shop space that they had occupied for about 36 years. One of the biggest reason is we they were outgrowing there shop. There was little storage for materials, they were unable to upgrade to larger equipment and so on. The company moved to a much large office space with a large pole barn in the back that could house much more storage and equipment. Only 2 years later, they expanded again adding another pole barn to the yard for extended storage for metal and other materials.

Now, we have walked into 2019. The metal business is continuing to expand and grow. With purchases of bigger and better equipment we are out growing the space again. CEI has looked to expand their shop with a new addition to the sheet metal side of the building. For everyone at CEI this is a very exciting event for 2019. Our permits have all come back for the warehouse expansion. As soon as weather breaks we will start the addition. The plan is to have it done as soon as possible.

Understanding “Keep Swinging For the Fences”

Every year the CEI senior leadership team gathers together to discuss our annual kick-off meeting and the yearly theme. The theme is generally a phrase, word or mantra for our employees for the year. It serves as a reminder of the goals that we set for our company every year. With goals being set in 2019, the main theme that came across for our partners and management team members was to simply “keep going.” CEI is on an amazing growth track and with the economy, in line, we are moving toward being even better. As a company we don’t want to deviate from what we are doing, we want to continue on the path toward greater excellence. With that goal in mind, we decided on the “Keep Swinging for the Fences” theme.

For most baseball fans this phrase is easy to understand. But for the non-fanatics, this could be a confusing phrase that seemingly has nothing to do with CEI, its mission, its customer base, or roofing and sheet metal work. The phrase “Swing for the Fences” is a baseball term that has its origin beginning in the 20th century with early baseball reporting. Since then it is grown in popularity to have meaning not related to baseball.

In baseball terms, it means to hit the ball as hard as possible with hopes of hitting a home run. The figurative meaning is to “go all out” or give maximum effort into what you are doing. The task at hand is like stepping up to the plate and you always want to step up with your best self. Then when you go to swing the bat, it is like doing the task. When you attempt to do the task you want to bring the maximum effort.

For CEI, “Keep Swinging for the Fences” means a couple of things…

First, it recognizes the effort that is already been put in. “Keep” is an important word because there is not a time where we weren’t trying our best. It’s just important to bring that motivation and hard work into every day. Just because you continue to hit home runs does not mean that you should take a step back and not bring the max effort into swinging. When it comes to being the best, you have to be the best in the little details. Bring the max effort into every day will show when you are trying to hit it out of the park in that job, project, month, year or with that customer.

#NoMoreTrashBags: CEI Supports Comfort Cases

The mission of Comfort Cases touched CEI ‘s team. While in a search for a hand’s on a charity event to help bring together the team while giving back. Comfort Cases is an organization that focuses on giving care packages to foster kids who are going through hard transitions. They are given a backpack with items such as a blanket, pajamas, personal hygiene supplies, and a book. All of this is to help them transition with some belongings to make them feel more at home.

After hearing what the organization was doing, CEI planned a packing party as part of there 2019 Kick-Off Meeting. Not only did it help give back, but team members also had to work together packing the backpacks, creating a team-building exercise. Together we packed 20 cases for foster kids ages 10-18, we divided the cases into ten boy cases and ten girl cases.

After the meeting, the cases were shipped to the Maryland headquarters for quality inspection and distributed to other locations across the United States.

For more information visit: https://www.comfortcases.org/

Kick-Off Meetings

2019 marked the 6th year that CEI has been hosting annual kick-off meetings. 6 years ago when the meetings began they were put together to be a Sandler leadership training day. In the last 2 years, CEI has taken on the planning process on our own. The first year this posed a challenge. It was a daunting task to specify exactly what to address, how to bring the team together and how to make sure that everyone felt it related to their job at the end of the day.

The theme of the 2018 meeting was “Everything Counts!” it was a year of refocusing. The previous year there was no annual meeting. We looked at the big pictures and all of its components and how they worked together. Everything Counts symbolized all the details and spoke to each one as equally important.

2019 brought a new challenge, 2018 was CEI’s best year yet. With a big focus on the details and expectations high, the year turned out with an amazing ending. In 2019 we wanted to repeat that. It’s important to keep motivation high and to keep working hard even when you are at the peak.

CEI’s 2019 Annual Kick-Off Meeting was hosted at Cleary University on February 8th, 2019. The team is getting together to do team building activities, express job concerns, talk about the industry and learn about how to lead there a team more effectively. The kick-off meeting is for the leadership teams at CEI. This includes Management, Office Staff, Estimators, Service Staff, Superintendents, and Foreman. It gives time for each department to gather together, work together and express concerns that they have. A big part of the meeting is to hear the other department and how they work and understand the importance of each member of the CEI team.

In addition to the meeting this year, we are adding a charity piece. We are packing backpacks for Comfort Cases. They support foster kids by providing them with supplies as they transition into new homes. Their story is touching and CEI is proud to support them and their mission.

2019’s theme is “Keep Swinging for the Fences”. The theme is a reminder to simply “keep going.” CEI is on an amazing growth track and with the economy, in line, we are moving toward being even better. As a company we don’t want to deviate from what we are doing, we want to continue on the path toward greater excellence. We want to keep moving up and keep motivation high. Just because last year was our best does not mean it can’t get better.

Overall, our kick-off meeting was a success. At CEI we are always working hard, pushing for excellence and are dedicated to “Keep Swinging for the Fences!

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