Building America Since 1935
Three Generations Committed to Building America
At the turn of the century, Henry Schultz made his living building roads in the Berrien County area. Little did he know that one of the roads he helped construct would be very close to the current location of Schultz Roofing Supply Company, a business that three generations of the Schultz family have committed to “building America” with excellent customer service and high quality materials.
Schultz Roofing Supply is truly a family business. Henry’s son, Clarence, founded the business in 1935 strictly as a roofing contractor. In 1960, the business converted to a wholesale/retail distributorship. In 1963, after spending his first year out of college in the finance business, Larry Schultz joined his father’s business, becoming president of the company in 1964. Eventually, the business became even more of a family enterprise. Larry’s wife, Judy Dunham Schultz served as secretary/treasurer. Their daughter, Lori Schultz Deja, joined the business as office manager and sales consultant while her husband, Chad Deja became the general manager. Other family members helped grow the business as well including Frances Schultz, two brothers, and an aunt.
Today, the third generation is hard at work maintaining the quality standards put in place by Clarence Schultz. With Chad now at the helm as president and Lori as secretary/treasurer and office manager, they are well aware of the dramatic changes in the business climate over the years. According to Chad, the business climate has changed dramatically over the years. “Single location distributors are definitely a minority and carrying on family business traditions through three generations is becoming increasingly rare,” said Chad. Lori attributes their success to maintaining the high standards that were set decades ago.
My grandfather took pride in everything he did,” said Lori. “He knew that our customers would notice the condition of the warehouse, showroom and delivery trucks, so he kept everything neat, clean and well organized. He was a wonderful mentor to my father, who upheld the same high standards. Chad and I are committed to following their fine examples.”
Lori knows that excellent customer service never becomes obsolete. “Customers know that we are more likely to provide special service. We spend a lot of time with our customers to ensure we are meeting their needs. They remember that kind of attention.”
Chad and Lori attribute much of the success of Schultz Roofing to their employees. “Maybe it’s because family relationships exist throughout the business. Our approach is simple: Everything we do is a team effort.” she said. “We all wear many hats and pitch in whenever something needs attention.” Despite a changing business climate, Chad and Lori describe the benefits of generational involvement in the business. “Each generation is eager to share their knowledge,” said Lori. “We’ve helped each other learn, implement new ideas, and stay in tune with technology. That keeps us on top of an ever changing market.”
The Schultz family also feels that supporting their community is a vital part of their philosophy as a family business.
Lori said, “My grandfather and father were always grateful for the relationships that Schultz Roofing Supply has with our community. We will continue to honor their memories by giving back as well. We strive to serve our valued customers to the best of our ability and to join them in making our community a wonderful place to work, live and raise families. We’re happy to be building America right here in St. Joseph, Michigan.”