Southeast Texas Industrial Contractors Mason Construction

On today’s Southeast Texas Industrial Contractor Profile, we highlight Mason Construction.

We enjoyed the opportunity to sit down with Chuck Mason, one of the firm’s executives.

Mason Construction is one of the firms “Building Southeast Texas”.

They have been involved in government, commercial, and industrial construction projects in Southeast Texas for three generations.

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Chuck and Becky Mason

As businessmen and women, it can be hard to see beyond today’s deadlines and the endless tasks we need to complete before the day is through.

Over time, a curious thing happens. Each day becomes a tiny puzzle piece in the giant jigsaw that will become the legacy of our life and of our company. Collectively each job and idea seen through to fruition becomes something greater than we ever envisioned or intended.

How do our daily decisions change the future? How will the way we live influence future generations?

In our interview with Chuck Mason, we listened as he shared how a few key decisions by different members of his family created a company that has not only built portions of the Golden Triangle, but has built something stronger – bonds between family members and employees and bonds between a company and its community.

Before 1939 my grandfather WK “Buddy” Mason had been a bookkeeper for an East Texas contractor. That year he decided to make a major change and to see if he could transition into becoming a contractor himself.

There was plenty of work in Southeast Texas creating the drainage ditches that would transform the Golden Triangle from a swamp into an environment that could support oilfields and the communities that would follow, including growing the city of Beaumont.

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Chad Mason

My grandfather invested his life savings of $650 to start a business running a drag line to dig drainage ditches. When he got his first contract from the Corps of Engineers, he discovered that his new drag line did not include the bucket. He had to borrow it from the manufacturer and pay it off out of his first jobs.

In the 40s and 50s W.K. Mason Dragline Contractor expanded into building oil field roads and brine pits. W.K. developed a strong relationship with Sun Oil. The lessons he learned about the importance of relationship building remain with the Mason family and Mason Construction today.

When I was at Lamar, I was a biology major. My brother Brad was a music major.

Something drew us to the family business though. Part of it was time with our father, but we enjoyed the work. Over time, my brother and I took on more and more responsibility for shaping the future of the company allowing my father to retire in 1980.

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Chad Mason, Le Short, and Councilman Pate

We were soon able to grow from 5 employees to 60 working in the oil refineries, building ditches and roads, and adding concrete work.

One of the things that allowed our company to prosper is our relationship with our employees. At Mason Construction, we weren’t hiring people to work on our next job. We were hiring people to work for the company. It took a while for people to get it, but if you were a hard worker and open to learning new skills, you could work your whole career with our company. Young people who thought they were getting a “job” soon found that they were advancing and earning “real” money. When we introduced profit sharing, we saw our employees buying their own homes and putting down deep roots in the community. Today many have been with us for over twenty years.

The other major game changer for us was our commitment to safety. At first, it was just something Brad and I saw as good business- minimize accidents to have a productive and healthy workforce. We won some awards though and that made it easy for some of the big refineries to bring us on- and to keep us on. Twenty years later, we continue to win awards for safety – and to be welcomed into the plants.

No matter how hard we worked and how ideal our best practices, at Mason Construction we recognize that if successful business owner tells you that luck did not play a part in their success, they’re lying.

For us a big role luck played was that the handful of plants we had strong relationships with always had work when times were tight. We kept our doors open – and we kept our family and employees working.

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Mason Family at 75th Anniversary Event

Today Mason Construction puts over 300 full time employees to work year round with their concrete construction, piling division, steel erection, building roads and ditches, and other phases of industrial and commercial construction.

My generation of Masons is slowly easing out so the next generation can shape the company for the coming decades.

What impact will they have on building Southeast Texas? We can’t wait to find out.

Chuck Mason now divides his time between Mason Construction and a number of non-profit organizations including the Beaumont Rotary and the Lamar Foundation. Chuck was a founder of the Jason Project and is the President of the Beaumont Children’s Museum.

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Jeremy Mason and Le Short

Mason Construction has celebrated its 75th anniversary and is looking forward to continuing to build and serve the Golden Triangle.

Mason Construction

(409) 842-4455

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Brad Mason

We hope you have enjoyed today’s Southeast Texas Industrial Contractor Profile.

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