Maverick is a respected utility construction company that has been listed twice in Inc. Magazine’s list of the 500 fastest growing companies in America. The business specializes in communication construction, the installation and maintenance of Distributed Antenna Systems (DAS) and aerial electric distribution.
It is often said that when we are faced with a crisis is when we really know on whom we can depend, and few situations are as devastating as natural disasters. When it struck the Gulf Coast of the United States in 2005, Hurricane Katrina pummeled the area with winds reaching 140 miles per hour, causing catastrophic levee breaks, over $100 billion in damage, and most tragic of all, the deaths of an estimated 1,800 men, women and children. Hurricane Sandy swept through the Caribbean less than a decade later in late October of 2012, and struck the east coast of the U.S., leaving hundreds dead, thousands homeless and causing billions of dollars in damage. Slamming the Jersey Shore the evening of October 29, winds from the superstorm reached eighty miles per hour, tearing through houses, flooding streets and knocking down powers lines, leaving millions without electricity.
First responders were dispatched immediately to assist the injured and help those trapped in their homes. Days later, an estimated 4.7 million Americans across fifteen states were still without electricity. It is during these disasters, when help is needed most, that Maverick Construction Corporation steps in. It mobilizes crews and works alongside first responders, often for weeks on end, until power and communications are restored to those who need it most.
“We will travel all over the country during catastrophic events, or even just a regular snowstorm, which results in significant power outages, interruptions in communications and lines down,” says Chief Executive Officer and President at Maverick Construction Michael McNally. “If we see a storm coming in and get a call from the utilities, they will hire us to drive into the storm. And when the storm clears, they send crews out, and we began to work through the process of re-energizing lines, installing new poles, and cleaning up in the aftermath and helping communities with that.”
The team at Maverick is proud of its role as a first responder during catastrophic events and has received the gratitude of numerous cities, communities, businesses and residents along the east coast and other locations. Some, like Susan O’Hara, personally contacted the company following Hurricane Sandy. Her house was not livable, and her eighty-five-year-old grandmother needed help restoring power. “The entire crew was professional, compassionate and was more than happy to help me out in a time of need,” she wrote.
Before establishing the company in 1994 (incorporated in 1997), McNally spent years earning his reputation in business as a principal in real estate development in the eighties and as a consultant for several professional organizations in the 1990s. He served such groups as the National Association of Home Builders (NABH) and the Washington-based United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
The staff at Maverick includes Vice President of Operations Christopher Sage and Vice President of Construction and Network Builds Ralph Canina. Along with senior staff members, the company has assembled a solid team of seventy full-time employees dedicated to the company and its clients.
Employee backgrounds range from qualified electrical engineers to project managers, and many employees also hold advanced degrees in business or other areas. The company prizes professionalism and performance under what can be very challenging circumstances. Maverick needs to be reliable, accountable and safe at all times since its people often work under extreme weather conditions such as wind, rain and snow storms to restore electricity and communication to hard-hit regions. Above all else, the company values people who function well as a team.
“We look at individuals who have had a history of playing on sports teams, who have a competitive spirit and know what it’s like to work with other individuals to get a collaborative win,” says McNally. “We like people who know how to win. That is a learned event; it’s not something that is just innate. Not only do they like to win, but they know how to do it.”
Maverick recruits individuals who take pride in their work, respect their trade and believe in the worth of each and every project, rather than just considering it a job. “I like people who take a personal interest and become a little bit possessive about the project as their own,” comments McNally. “Those are the traits I look for. Typically, that attitude – combined with a little bit of humility – brings success.”
“In the big game, the best players want the ball,” as the company says. “Actually, they demand it. It’s the same when constructing a power and communications network. The larger the scope, the more challenging the design and engineering, the more the real players, like Maverick Construction, want the ball.”
For Maverick Construction, the demand to win has resulted in the company expertly taking on a variety of massive projects. It delivers all aspects of communication networks from precise designs to innovative engineering solutions to successful job completion. Maverick Construction has been awarded numerous contracts and earned the respect and trust of municipal, state and utility customers from Boston to Orlando. The company is qualified to bid on state projects in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York, New Hampshire and Rhode Island, and its state customers include the Massachusetts Department of Transportation, the Connecticut Department of Administrative Services and the New Hampshire Department of Transportation.
Over the years, the company has completed numerous projects for utility customers such as Northeast Utilities, National Grid, Massachusetts-based NSTAR Electric, the Jacksonville Electric Authority (JEA), AT&T, Philadelphia Power and Light, Harvard University, and many others.
Maverick is not one to shy away from large-scale and challenging work and has taken on highly-involved projects of $36 million. Projects have seen works such as the massive Colburn Street substation electrical distribution upgrade, which saw the installation of over thirty miles of new underground flat strap cable which required more than three hundred new splices. All of this was done within an existing century-old duct bank system. The tight time frame required precise scheduling of crews, delivery of materials and electrical cutovers, and the project was completed on-time – without a single fault.
Whenever possible, the trained team at Maverick likes to be involved in the pre-construction stages of a project to support clients in the complete process of value engineering, design and execution. Underlying all projects is the company’s full safety training program, including practice training.
It has a number of affiliate companies. One of these is Maverick Energy Services of Dublin Ireland, which serves oil and gas industry customers, telecommunications, fiber optic broadband construction and utility and line construction. This affiliate offers engineering, program management, installation and maintenance services. Together, the group of companies supports many different sectors and has completed work in Singapore, Marrakesh, West Africa, Ireland, Ohio, Southwest Texas and, most recently, Nashville.
McNally says the company is focused less on hard sales than communicating what it is and the services it can bring to its customers. “With our confidence, our expertise and our professionalism, people want to do business with us,” he says. “Ninety-nine percent of it is me getting on the phone and calling these people – networking and forming strategic partnerships with other companies in the industry which we can help support and augment their services to complete a project. We believe in partnering and bringing the right skill sets to the table to make sure that the project is smooth.”
The company recently took on a project redesigning utility poles to meet today’s needs. “We created a pole that is steel and hollow in the middle, so we can bring our wires through it,” states McNally. “It is structurally sound to hold radios and other equipment, but it is painted to look like a concrete pole. It is also multi-purpose and has an antenna built in on the top.”
In the future, the company aims to see a greater presence in the oil and gas industry, providing fiber solutions to well projects, while maintaining its commitment to those in need, as it did so effectively during Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Sandy.