Founded in 1971, E.L. Pruitt Co. is a leading provider of HVAC systems, plumbing, piping, and fire protection for commercial, industrial, institutional, and service/maintenance clients in Illinois.
The Meaning behind the Name
In 1971, Ed Pruitt Sr. founded E.L. Pruitt Co. The business started as a solid successful sheetmetal and roofing company for residential and commercial businesses. In 1980, Ed Sr. sold his business to his two sons, John and Ed Jr. for a 50/50 split. Ed. Sr. passed away in 1983 and his two sons kept the business up and running with steady growth and expansion of services.
"The secret of your success is determined by your daily agenda." - John Maxwell
E.L. Pruitt Co. quickly began to expand its services provided in the mid 1980’s. In 1984 the piping trade was added followed by plumbing services in 1989. These trades became a crucial entity to the business. Quickly after, a piping fabrication shop was formed in 1999, making the production and quality control of these services much more efficient to the customer.
In 1990, the sheetmetal shop began to use its first coil line. This allowed for increased productivity due to the automation of the system. Our craft masters now had a path to increased production of large-capacity jobs. The large-capacity demand continued to grow and technology continued to evolve. In 2009, a newly updated coil line was added, along with a plasma table and a water jet line. The rapid productivity exploded even more for large commercial, industrial and institutional jobs. Reduction of scrap due to the frugal material utilization was saving our customers and our company material, time, and money. Efficiency was now the name of the game.
Fire protection services were added in 1996 as a design-build program. After a great take off in the industry, plan and spec was quickly added.
In 1997, John bought his brother, Ed Jr.’s half of the business. He then focused the business away from residential and strictly into commercial and industrial jobs in Illinois. The company was growing and becoming more demanding across Illinois. Two additional locations were added to suffice the demand. In 2011, our Decatur location was added and in 2013, the Champaign location was added.
After the company developed in 1971, it quickly experienced some of the most memorable hardships our country has faced from a business perspective. In the 1970’s, interest rates sky rocketed to 21% causing a great inflation with a recession following. This made business decisions difficult for our company and many of its customers. After overcoming the market roller coaster, three more recessions followed in 1987, 1991, and 2001. In 1991, there was also a technology bubble, demanding businesses to spend money to vastly grow their business and recover their income that had bounced during the inflation and recessions. In 2013, the budget crisis in Illinois began, leaving it difficult for institutions to fund improvements for their facilities and businesses were left with completed jobs that were now unpaid.
"I'm convinced that about half of what separates successful entrepreneurs from the non-successful ones is pure perseverance." - Steve Jobs
The Evolution of Technology
Over the years technology has exploded making production more effective and competent. In 1987 plasma cutting tables were developed. Next came the coil line in the 1990s. The production in the sheetmetal shops boomed from then forward. In late 1999-2000, computer aided drafting came into play, making designs precise and resourceful for our company, the contractors, and the customers.
Although there have been many challenges E.L. Pruitt Co. has faced as a business with an up and down economy, there has also been double the successful leaps for many decades as well. The company’s first project was Graham Hospital. The job was a ventilation project on the hospital’s new addition. From then on, there has been many successful school district projects, such as Herrin School District, Sacred Heart Griffin, Glenwood schools, and Beardstown schools just to name a few. In 2000, our company finished a 1 million square foot ventilation job on the State Farm Corporation South addition. Memorial Medical Center added a new patient care tower that required us to use our first mechanical racking system for expedited project completion. St. John’s Hospital also added a patient care tower that we provided our craftsmanship in many of the trades we offer. Akorn Pharmaceuticals began a large expansion in 2017 to their Decatur location that we are currently providing panelized wall systems, plumbing and HVAC work along with complete design in all three trades.
E.L. Pruitt Co. is proud of their accomplishments over the years. However, the main accomplishment is giving back to the community. Our company is a proud partner with several organizations that also give back to the community. The Memorial Foundation, St. Johns Foundation, Food Bank, Mission Outreach, and Springfield YMCA have all done great things for our community and we are proud associates with each.
"The road to success is always under construction" - Arnold Palmer