O A K Names Schoonveld President

October 14, 2004
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GRAND RAPIDS — For only the seventh time in its 114-year history, Owen-Ames-Kimball Co. will have a new president.The construction firm’s board of directors last week appointed Bill Schoonveld to succeed Tom Healy as president, effective Jan. 1.

Currently serving as O-A-K’s vice-president, Schoonveld becomes only the seventh president in the privately held company’s 114-year history. He has overseen many of the firm’s largest and most visible construction projects, including the $46 million Kent County Courthouse, and construction projects for school districts from Rockford to Wayland.

“Bill is a strong leader and embodies the values that Owen-Ames-Kimball is known for,” said Healy. “He understands that client trust is the foundation of a successful construction firm. He expects the very best from the employees and subcontractors that he works with, and he gets it. He also knows the construction business from top to bottom.

“Bill understands what it takes to be successful in an extremely competitive industry. He knows how to market, how to lead, and how to keep clients coming back. Most importantly, he has the sound judgment that has guided Owen-Ames-Kimball for more than 114 years.”

Healy himself is no stranger to that culture, and in large part helped to develop and nurture it. He has been with O-A-K for 40 years, having served as president for the past 17.

“I’ve worked with Bill Schoonveld for more than two decades. He knows how to earn and keep your trust. He is going to do a fantastic job,” Healy said.
Schoonveld said trust plays an important role in every project at O-A-K.

“I’m honored at the confidence that the board has expressed by selecting me to serve as president,” he said. “I intend to continue Owen-Ames-Kimball’s history of not only success, but of fairness and integrity. At the end of the day, trust is what sets Owen-Ames-Kimball apart. We built client relationships decades ago that continue to this day.”

Schoonveld has served as president of the Associated Builders and Contractors and as president of the Hopkins Public Schools Board of Education. He is a shareholder in O-A-K.

Schoonveld said he looks forward to his increased responsibilities.

“True, a lot has changed since I joined Owen-Ames-Kimball back in 1978. Our clients are more sophisticated and more involved in the process. More and more of them view our firm as a partner. Some aspects of the business, however, will never change. Clients will always want the project done as quickly and as cost-effectively as possible.”

Founded in 1891, O-A-K has participated in hundreds of projects in and around West Michigan. The company also has wholly owned subsidiaries in Muskegon and Fort Myers, Fla.

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