The Unshakable Madam President
Audubon Environmental and Helical Piers in Medford Lakes, New Jersey is now a certified Woman Business Enterprise. It has earned this designation in New Jersey, Delaware, New York City, and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey in addition to be recognized as a Minority Woman Business Enterprise in New York.
Carla Morris-Lombardo took ownership of the company in 1998 and has been a hands-on majority stockholder ever since.
“John came home one day and announced he quit his job and wanted to start his own business,” Morris-Lombardo said.
At the time, she was pregnant with their fifth child. “No money, no prospects, no job, and a baby on the way,” she said. “I couldn’t think of a better time to start a new business.”
So, with a $27,000 home equity line of credit, Audubon Environmental was launched on a wing and a prayer.
Against All Odds
Morris-Lombardo has continued to place her faith in God through thick and thin. There has been a lot of thin. John died in 2011, but she has survived being close to bankruptcy, a near fatal illness, her doctor’s request to end her pregnancy and the tragic loss of a beloved granddaughter.
Despite all these setbacks, Morris-Lombardo never lost her faith. She was miraculously cured, refused to end the pregnancy of her daughter Sarah, who is now in college and Audubon Environmental and Helical Piers is thriving.
While they initially completed Phase No. 1 environmental remediation work for Commerce Bank, Audubon recognized early on that helical piers increased productivity and gave them more flexibility and control of their projects.
Concrete piers were cheaper on a one-to-one comparison, but multiple mobilizations on multiple projects caused scheduling nightmares. Initially, Audubon used helical subcontractors, but transitioned to complete its own installations when they hired Chuck Tauscher, an experienced helical hand.
This strategic hire allowed the company to also expand beyond the environmental remediation field and foray into other helical work. In October 2012, Superstorm Sandy hit the East Coast. Audubon’s mastery of grouted helical piers and productivity improvements led it to become one of the leaders in helical storm work.
The Danbro Difference
Danbro Distributors has supplied Audubon with helicals since the beginning, including IDEAL Foundation Products since August 2017. Danbro President “Frank D’Angelo has been a good friend and a real angel,” said Morris-Lombardo. “He kept bugging me about getting my WBE designation, warning me that storm work would dry up eventually, just like the environmental work slowed down, and I needed to be ready for the next phase. I’m glad he kept pestering me.”
Audubon is now focused on more commercial and industrial work. The company has recently embarked on its first STELCOR drilled-in displacement micropile job at the DHL packaging and sorting facility near John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens, New York.
“STELCOR and our Woman Business Enterprise status allows us more flexibility to bid more public and higher capacity pile work,” Morris-Lombardo said.
She has achieved many firsts in her incredible personal and professional journey, including Audubon’s new designated status as a Woman Business Enterprise. She credits her unshakable faith in helping her get through some difficult times. And, if Frank D’Angelo is indeed an angel, then we can be sure God does work in mysterious ways.
Danbro Distributors is proud to partner with Carla Morris-Lombardo, a helical pioneer, a WBE designee and a true survivor. We salute her and Audubon Environmental and Helical Piers for 21 years of tenacity, adaptability, and innovation.