Click to View Latest IssueClick to View Latest Issue

Planning for the Future: Build, Restore, Maintain and Advise

By  0 Comments

Sitting in the board room of Haggerty Construction, Inc., Ryan Haggerty recalls a picture once taken with his kids in hard hats overlooking a construction site. He sentimentally described the outline of their small silhouettes among the concrete walls as he reflected on the growth of his family, the success of his booming company and what the future holds for both.

Build, Restore, Maintain and Advise. This is the business motto, and yet the words aren’t exclusive to the work environment. If you had asked Ryan at the onset of his business what things would look like personally and professionally, he admits he would not have imagined the growth of it all. Starting with one employee, Haggerty Construction opened its doors in 2010 with a humble start. Twelve years, 66 vehicles and 75 employees later, with that first employee still working for him, it has become a multi-million-dollar company handling everything from commercial and industrial construction to insurance restoration. Locally, Haggerty Construction has been the lead contractor on many notable projects, including the renovation of the historic building in University Park that is now home to the corporate offices of Grupe Huber Company. In addition, they are currently renovating Sherwood Mall, a major project that is highly visible along Pacific Avenue in Stockton. Ryan takes pride in family and relationships, and Haggerty Construction has been the recipient of Best Places to Work in the Central Valley awards for both 2020 and 2022; no recipients were awarded in 2021.  

Yet the company was not the only area of change. During that time, Ryan and his wife, Andrea, have expanded their family significantly. Their seven children, Sean, Sieanna, David, Mia, Kataleena, Aubrianna and Chase, keep the Haggerty household anything but boring. Around 2015, Kataleena and Aubrianna came into their lives via foster care through Ryan’s mother-in-law. Ultimately, the girls had their “forever day” as adopted Haggertys. “They are the most incredibly grateful and Haggerty-proud children, both unique yet incredibly bonded with one another and the whole family,” Ryan noted. 

Chase, their youngest, is still in the fostering stage and came into their lives in the past year. “He was dropped at our house with nothing but his cowboy boots and a cowboy hat and a small pile of toys,” he continued. Regardless of circumstance, the Haggertys want all their kids to feel loved and supported and Chase is no exception. “We’ve done our best to show him a life the same as the rest of the children and have gotten him engulfed in all the opportunities and extra-curricular activities a young six-year-old boy deserves. While the ultimate goal is reunification, he has fit in quite well, and we consider him one of the family.”

Business and family have changed quite a bit over the years, but according to Ryan, “It has been all joy.” And to further that joy, Ryan has seen a stronger meaning behind the company motto as his children follow in his footsteps. In the last two years, both Sean, 21, and Sieanna, 20, the oldest children in the family, have joined the Haggerty team working in different fields of the company. Having his children work for him was never the initial goal, but he’s glad they are making this choice for themselves. “Businesses have spirits, and this one is profound, so my children coming in has been organic because it’s more intentional and that’s greater than something I ever imagined,” he admitted. 

Sean and Sieanna are still new to the construction world but have quickly found their niche in different facets of the company. While Sean works as a junior superintendent and tradesman, doing everything from hanging drywall to metal framing, Sieanna handles the more administrative side, helping with contracts, insurance and invoices. Sean had a desire to go into construction long before his dad started the business, but as he watched his dad grow the family name, this inspired him to jump in. “I saw my dad and what he built for the family and I wanted to be a part of it,” Sean affirmed. Sieanna, on the other hand, did not initially consider going the route of construction. “I originally wanted to be a social worker, but I saw the desire and drive my dad had and I wanted to learn more, so I tried it,” she smiled. Sieanna has now worked her way up in the last year, assisting the project management teams as a project administrator. “I can’t imagine myself doing anything else,” she said. 

And while the two may carry the family namesake, they both started from the ground up, acknowledging there is no special treatment. Sieanna recalled a time when she couldn’t get time off of work for a family vacation, indicating family connections don’t guarantee special privileges. “They each have their own manager,” said Ryan. “So I get to be a motivator and encourager.” The two rarely work in the same place, as Sieanna is stationed in the office and Sean is out on different sites, but both agree they have learned so much in the short time they’ve worked in the company and are eager to learn more. “It’s exciting fast-paced, go, go, go all the time,” said Sean. “You get to learn something new every day.” 

And while they work to keep the lines of family and professional life separate, all three agree that the business has given them more perspective and respect. “We have gotten stronger,” said Sieanna. “Once I started working here it brought a different connection.” Both Sieanna and Sean look up to their parents. “If they hadn’t pushed me, I wouldn’t be where I am today,” noted Sieanna. Both aspire to go further in the business. Sean has his sights on a long-term career. “I hope to be a superintendent, run a crew, and projects.” Sieanna is taking college classes on the side at University of the Pacific, and she’s absorbing as much as she can to add to the family company. She even wrote an essay about her experience as a female in a largely male-populated field. “I hope to be a project engineer and keep the company alive.” 

Like their dad, they aspire to take an active role in the community. Ryan supports many organizations, serving on the board of directors for the Victory Club at St. Mary’s High School; the Red Rhino Orphanage Project; Morada Municipal Advisory Committee; Waterloo/Morada Rural Fire District; and Builders Exchange of San Joaquin. He’s a former board member for the Greater Stockton Chamber of Commerce, recipient of the 2021 of Leadership and Action Award, the Greater Stockton Chamber of Commerce 2015 Business Person of the Year, and many other local organizations and agencies. 

Ryan is honored by his kids’ eagerness to take an active role in the business, but he has never pushed them in a particular path. He has always encouraged them to follow their dreams and, like any father, wants them to find their own way. “If the family business is not their path, then it’s okay if they find another. If they want to open up another business, we would support them as trade partners.” But he’s open to the possibility that if more Haggertys want to follow him down this road, there will always be a place for them. He looks forward to seeing how their different personalities might add to the company if they should choose that route. “David might go into business development, and Mia might be marketing and social media, Aubrey into law.” Kataleena and Aubrianna are the biggest fans of the Haggerty name, always eager to sport Haggerty Construction apparel and the first to announce when they’ve spotted construction sites or company vehicles around town. 

Outside of the company, Ryan and Andrea try to keep a balance between work and business and allow for time to just be a family. The Haggertys enjoy rooting on their son, David, at baseball, helping Chase catch lizards, and doing family activities such as snow skiing and horseback riding. Looking to the future, the business motto, Build, Restore, Maintain and Advise, continues to shape a deeper meaning as the family is open to all the blessings of what’s to come.