An Okotoks success story has earned the cherry on top of a milestone year.
Celebrating its 40th year in operation Bow Mark Paving and Concrete took home the gold medal for Best Paving/Concrete in the 2019 Best of the Foothills Western Wheel Readers’ Choice Awards.
“Just us being the representation for Okotoks and High River and the south country, we love to buy local, we love to hire as many people as we can from the Foothills region,” said Ben Bjorge, VP of Bow Mark Concrete. “It’s fantastic to be recognized. We’ve got good people and it’s excellent keeping these guys busy.”
Bow Mark is deeply rooted into the Okotoks community.
Bob and Gail McArthur founded the company in 1979 and it is now operated by the second generation of McArthur’s with Sean McArthur now at the helm as president.
“Everything I’ve seen has been continuous, smart growth, mindful growth but at the same time you wouldn’t do it without the people we have,” Bjorge said. “Bob McArthur making it through some really tough times in the 80s really locked on as a local contractor and Sean certainly never would want to change that, this is just what he’s set that the Foothills community is number one.
“As far as the workforce goes, we don’t have any companies of our size in direct competition that would be in this area. It’s nice to draw from people working in the south and we give them an opportunity to have a position fairly close to home.”
The community-minded company is a big supporter of several Okotoks area organizations including the Foothills Country Hospice, Foothills Community Centre along with being the title sponsor for the Okotoks Bow Mark Midget AAA Oilers team, helping to bring elite level AAA hockey to the area since the team’s inception in 2017.
The company added Bow Mark Concrete to its pre-existing paving operations in 2013 and the business continues to succeed, in spite of the recession hitting the construction industry across the province.
“Volumes are okay, but you have to do more for a little bit less,” Bjorge said. “We certainly feel that every level whether it be engineering, the owners, general contractors, everybody is a little bit tighter so you can feel that across the spectrum.
“It has been tough. We’re doing well, but at the same time, let’s just say all the budgets are a little bit tighter.”
Having name brand recognition in the community over four decades is a boon during these tough times.
“We’re getting to the point where we get a lot of return customers and lots of negotiating customers and you work together to be as efficient as possible,” Bjorge said.