The Texas Two-Step
In the late 1990s, H.B. Zachry Co. became Zachry Construction Corp., which continued to perform heavy highway construction, commercial building projects, industrial process construction (including power plants), and industrial maintenance, as its predecessor did. And when logistically possible, the construction company purchased its supply of aggregates from Capitol Aggregates, its sister company.
“Zachry remains a customer, but is not a very big customer of ours, so to speak,” Eckert says. “But depending on where their jobs are, if we can get to them, we’ll try to sell them rock.”
There have been many changes for Capitol Aggregates in the last several years. The company sold the hot-mix asphalt business and a ready-mix business so that it could focus on aggregates and cement. Also, Capitol Aggregates’ parent company was reorganized into two corporations run by Pat Zachry’s grandsons. Capitol Aggregates – along with heavy and commercial building contractor Zachry Construction – is now part of Zachry Corp., under the leadership of David Zachry. But through all the changes, the dedication of the employees to each other and to the company has remained constant. Capitol Aggregates celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2007, but it doesn’t attribute that to trying to be like the big players. It succeeds by doing what it does best – breaking rock and taking care of its people.
Help for a Hometown Hero
Employees who work in aggregate quarries may be considered insignificant to some, but not to Capitol Aggregates and its parent company, Zachry Corp. When a plant employee’s son qualified to go to the 2008 Olympics last summer, the company, and the entire town of Marble Falls, rallied around the employee and his family.
Jesus Manzano has been an employee of Capitol Aggregates for nearly 20 years. He works at the Delta Quarry located just a couple miles down the highway from Marble Falls Quarry. His son, Leonel “Leo” Manzano grew up in Marble Falls, where he ran on the high school track team.
After graduating from high school, Leo went on to attend the University of Texas in Austin, where he runs on the college track team. The citizens of Marble Falls have followed Leo’s accomplishments since high school, as has his father’s company. So when Leo became the first University of Texas 1,500-meter runner to make an Olympic team, it made headline news. A large banner went up across F.M. 1431 near the Highway 281 intersection that read, “Welcome to Marble Falls, home of Leonel Manzano.” Signs of support hung from shops and buildings, and billboards wished him luck.
When supervisors at his father’s plant heard the news, they sent the information up the company chain where it finally made its way to David Zachry, the owner and president of Zachry Corp. Zachry felt that, if Jesus Manzano’s son was good enough to make the Olympic Team, the family should go watch him compete. So the corporation went to work to make that happen for the Manzano family.
Zachry Corp. bought round-trip airline tickets to Beijing, China, for the entire family. Then, the company provided the family with a nice place to stay by offering them the use of corporate housing it owned in Beijing. The corporation also assisted the family with obtaining all the necessary documentation such as passports – all at company expense.
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