Detroit Janitorial & Cleaning Services Blog

Stathakis Says Farewell to Jerry Ledbetter

Posted by George Stathakis on Wed, Jun 05, 2013 @ 10:15 AM

Jerry Ledbetter resized 600

Jerry Ledbetter has been a painter for over forty years. Nearly fifteen of those years Jerry has spent here at Stathakis where he recently retired as a Painting Supervisor. Why so many years spent in an industry that many people drift in and out of? As Jerry himself said, “I like to paint, it’s that simple. I’m an outdoors kind of guy and during the warmers months, much of the work is outside, a great place to get your work done right?  The only thing better than that is retirement.” And so Jerry is finally enjoying his retirement, the culmination of four decades worth of hard work and of course, everyone at Stathakis wishes Jerry nothing but good things.

Jerry Ledbetter has been with the Stathakis family for 14 years. Chris Stathakis had this to say about Jerry, “Jerry is a guy with real integrity, he is honest and he looks out for the customer. It’s not very often that we run across someone as special as Jerry. I wish we had ten more just like him. We know he’s looking forward to retirement and we want him to enjoy it, but he will really be missed.”

So why would a guy who has the work ethic and know how to get many jobs in many places, stay here at Stathakis, you might wonder. “I really like working for a family organization. Dennis, Chris and George, they treat me like family and I like that. I’ve been painting for 42 years and Stathakis is the best company I have ever worked for hands down. When I first met with George about joining Stathakis, he asked what I wanted out of the job, I don’t think I had ever been asked that before. I told him I wanted to work for a good company that I could retire from and that’s what I did.”

During his years at Stathakis, Jerry witnessed many changes. As Jerry himself notes, “When I started we had maybe ten accounts, one or two major painting accounts and I’m not sure we even had any building maintenance accounts. Now we have over 400 employees and Stathakis has really grown into a force in our industry and a very good place to work. George, Chris and Dennis have grown Stathakis the way they have because of how they treat people, customers, employees, all of us. Those guys didn’t miss opportunities, they found good people and we did our jobs.”  George Stathakis is happy for Jerry but sad to see him go, “Jerry is a part of why Stathakis was able to grow the way it did. Jerry was the kind of guy I could really count on. We all want to be the kind of person that really comes through when you need it but really, only a handful of people really come through for you time and time again.”

While Jerry appreciated the family nature of the business and had the opportunity to grow with the company, certainly there are things he won’t miss.  “Well, the hours could be challenging but it comes with the territory. Sure the winter months of leaving for work when it was dark out and driving home in the dark weren’t my favorite, but it balances out when I think about the time I got to spend outdoors working with the sun on my face. And I got paid to do something I really like to do, not everyone can say that.”

Jerry Ledbetter service resized 600“Jerry worked hard as a painter and then as a painting supervisor and he left his department better than he found it. He really likes painting and it shows in his work and the attitude he brought with him every day,” said Dennis Stathakis.  Jerry liked the company he worked for and liked the work and just maybe that is the magic recipe for a long and fruitful career. “I like painting, it’s good work and the work changes you know, a different day, a different job.” All of us here at Stathakis wish Jerry many wonderful days ahead, relaxing and enjoying all that Michigan and beyond has to offer. Jerry will definitely be missed here at the office and on the job but we are grateful that he was and will continue to be counted upon as an MVP here at Stathakis and part of our family.

What will Jerry do now? He’s looking forward to sleeping in once in awhile and getting more use out of his Jet Ski. He’ll have more time to camp, fish and spend time with his wife Sandy and their Yorkie and Poodle. Jerry says he won’t miss the hours and is of course looking forward to more free time, but he will miss his conversations with Dennis and the chances he had to catch up with the janitorial staff who he saw coming in as he was usually leaving. What advice does Jerry have for people thinking about entering the painting or building maintenance field? “Be cordial to everyone, do your job the best you can and then let it go, it will all fall into place if you just do that.”

Thank you Jerry for everything you have done for Stathakis! 

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Tags: Painting Services, Customer Focus

Painting Services for Maintenance Free Material

Posted by George Stathakis on Fri, Mar 02, 2012 @ 07:00 AM

Stathakis Painting ServicesMaterials like factory made aluminum, vinyl siding, composite decking, and fiber glass trim claim to be maintenance free. The advertisements argue that once any of these materials are installed you can almost forget them forever. They neither call for frequent maintenance or regular painting. But what if the user wants to paint them for some reason?  According to the experts, this can be done.

People have been using colors to manipulate their moods or to freshen up the looks of an area. These maintenance-free materials surely could be painted most of the time, by following the right procedures, according to Debbie Zimmer, expert of paint and color, at Paint Quality Institute. Thus, painting tips for materials that could go many years without an extra coat of a paint, are in desirable need of the era for exterior and interior painting. The best option would be to hire some well known painting contractors. This would save a lot of time and effort on the part of those who work busy schedules and cannot afford an extra day wasted on  a task better handled by a professional. Following are the points that should be kept in mind before using the paint on these maintenance-free materials:

  • Before painting, one should make sure that all the necessary repairs have been done.

  • The surface should be thoroughly scrubbed, rinsed, and cleaned.

  • Any mildew or mold should be removed before applying any coat of paint.

  • A water and bleach solution in a ratio of 3:1 respectively, could easily remove any mildew or mold. A thorough rinsing should be followed.

  • The last step before applying paint is to add a fresh coat of acrylic latex primer. The primer helps the paint stick better to the surface and thus provides a better finish to the color.

Maintenance free materials are often very smooth and slick, which means extra care is to be taken while painting them. Any ordinary paint, if applied without much care, could end up looking bad, along with deteriorating the quality of the maintenance free materials forever. The care that should be taken while painting the maintenance free material is as follows:

  • A top quality primer that is 100% acrylic latex should be considered for the job. This will allow the paint to have a better grip on the surface and therefore last longer with a better finish.

  • Top quality paint, preferably a 100% acrylic latex paint, could give the much needed durability to the color, along with the consistency and gloss.

  • The quality of the brushes and rollers used to paint the material should be of very good quality. This will allow the user to get a good, thick layer of the paint for better protective coating and appearance of the color.

  • The final thing that has to be kept in mind is the weather. The weather conditions should not be anything in extreme: like hot, cold, or windy. A simple warm, sunny day should be preferred for the job.

PDCA Accredited ContractorStathakis, being a PDCA Accredited Contractor, has been providing the best quality painting services to its partners for thirty five years.  Choosing a PDCA Accredited Contractor can help make sure you choose a professional company that subscribes to higher standards in the way they perform service.

The benefits of working with a PDCA Accredited Contractor include:  

  • Pride in Results: Trained professional craftsmen using the right materials to give customers the job they want and deserve.

  • Great Value: Educated professionals know the latest materials and techniques to address your concerns about quality, longevity and the environment.

  • Peace of Mind: Assured compliance to ethics standards, health and safety standards and licensing and insurance requirements.

  • Minimized Risk:  Standards created by industry professionals and legal authorities mean you know what to expect and can count on the results.

The Painting & Decorating Contractors of America (PDCA) have developed an accreditation that educates contractors in business operations, technical information and verifies vital credentials.  George Stathakis has actively worked on the PDCA Commercial Forum to further the professionalism of the Painting Contractors Industry as a whole.      

Accreditation is the voluntary approach for contractors to show they comply and exceed what consumers need to have for their protection. Accreditation is what you may equate to a painting degree! 

To be accredited, contractors must first comply with mandatory prerequisite of ethics, quality, health and safety standards and demonstrate substantial compliance with industry standards in company operations. PDCA standards are the only painting & decorating standards recognized by the industry professionals to reflect the needs of consumers, the public at-large, and laws and regulations. 

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Tags: Building Maintenance, Painting Services

TWB Chooses Stathakis for 300,000 Sq. Ft. Paint Project

Posted by Chris Stathakis on Thu, Dec 22, 2011 @ 04:25 PM

It was a big job, with big challenges. TWB, a customized steel solutions company in Monroe, needed the interior of their 300,000 sq. ft. industrial plant painted in a short timeline while the factory was still running.

“TWB pulled the trigger fast – we got the go-ahead in early July and had to have the majority of the job done by August,” explained George Stathakis,  “To meet the deadline, our crew worked from 6 to 6 for the first 28 days in a row. In total, the job took six weeks to complete.”

TWB Chooses Stathakis for 300,000 Sq. Ft. Paint ProjectThe project included painting ceilings, walls beams, columns, cranes and color coding all pipes. We worked closely with Sherwin Williams to choose a product that would have longevity with also being friendly to the environment.  Since odors and coverage were a concern as well, we ultimately selected a water-based product.  This product allowed TWB employees towork in close proximity to our painters without breathing the normal Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) emitted by more traditional petroleum based paints.

Stathakis worked closely with TWB plant manager Gene Jolly to coordinate a rolling schedule that kept both the project and the factory running on track. Their strategy wasto work an area and then move on, often working around robots and top lines. The job required an excess of 4,000 gallons of paint, four manlifts and about $30,000 in visqueen to protect the robots and workspaces.

Jeff Keaton, TWB Purchasing Agent, explained why they choose Stathakis for the project. “Price was important, and Stathakis was competitively priced. Also, we knew them because they have done our janitorial work for four years. We knew the quality of work they do and the work ethic instilled in their people. They did an excellent job.”

“By painting the plant, there is an increase in morale. Now our employees walk into a brighter plant, it’s a difference between night and day.”

Tags: Painting Services

How to Keep Your Exterior Paint Fresher, Longer

Posted by Chris Stathakis on Fri, Apr 22, 2011 @ 02:22 PM

How to Keep Your Exterior Paint Fresher, LongerWhile it may not be time to pick up a paintbrush, its a great time to make sure your paint job lasts as long as possible by following these tips:

  1. Keep landscaping away from building, if possible. If there is too much landscaping, the building may stay damp, leading to mold issues and peeling paint.
  2. Make sure your bushes are trimmed enough so that they can’t hit the building during gusts of wind. Bushes that continually beat on your building wears down your paint.
  3. Keep gutters clean and all seams properly sealed. Continuous leaks ruin even the best paint jobs.
  4. Inspect the caulking in control joints and window/door openings to make sure they are not cracked or delaminating. If there is even a small amount of wear, water can get behind it.
  5. Check your parapit wall cap — look for openings where water can get in and cause damage

If it is time to paint, be sure to ask your contractor for details about their warranty. To offer the best possible warranty, Stathakis gets the paint manufacturer to write specs for the job, including prep (powerwashing, grinding, sandblasting), type of primer, finish and caulk. The manufacturer will generally warranty the paint between 1— 3 years and Stathakis extends that warranty to 5 years labor and materials — Michigan’s longest commercial painting warranty.

Tags: Building Maintenance, Painting Services

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