Francis Thomas Contracting (FTC) has turned 90 years old, celebrating with a gathering at its Carnarvon headquarters April 25.

The business is the longest-running, family-operated, contractor in the Haliburton Highlands.

In 1934, the beginning of FTC was simple, customers needed access to building sites and their properties. The business quickly evolved to building foundations and septic systems.

In the mid-1980s, Francis’ grandson, Keith, joined and eventually took his position at the helm.

Today, FTC has 53 team members and supplies more than 150,000 tonnes of aggregate a year. The company also installs more than 50 sewage systems annually and provides snow removal services to more than 400 properties.

“We’re honoured to celebrate 90 years of business in the Haliburton Highlands this year,” Keith, who is president of the company, said.

“We are known for quality work, reliability and having a trusted team who not only work in the community but live here as well – the passion they have for quality work and the relationships the team has with our customers has been the key to our success.”

FTC has a deep-rooted, rich history.

“When my grandfather and great-grandfather founded the company in 1934, their collective vision was not only to support the family but also for the business to become integral to our local area,” Keith says. “I believe we’ve been able to carry on that tradition through regional involvement in a number of ways.”

Keith was a member of the Algonquin Highlands fire department for more than 35 years, and Keith’s son and team member, Brandon Thomas, has served with the department for more than 15 years. The business is also a member of the Haliburton Highlands Chamber of Commerce and the Haliburton County Home Builders’ Association. The company is active with industry-specific organizations that assist in shaping the future of the building industry.

At the celebration last week, warden Liz Danielsen said starting a company in a small rural community, and having it grow and thrive into its 90th year, “is rather extraordinary.”

She added Algonquin Highlands loves having FTC within its borders, as does the County of Haliburton. She congratulated the Thomas’ and their employees, and brought greetings, and a certificate, from MPP Laurie Scott.

Keith added, “I’m sure when Francis started this, he didn’t expect it to do this. It draws on the heartstrings a little bit.”