COVINGTON, Ga. — When students pour into the new Eastside High School within the next year and are able to successfully use new technology, that will mean a job well done for one local company.
Electrical Contractor Inc., based in Covington, has been tasked to make sure the entire 107-acre campus is powered, which includes everything from the classrooms and cafeteria to the football stadium and parking lots.
Dean Krontz, who is ECI’s vice-president of business services, said the company was excited to be part of the area school’s construction as part of the bid package headlined by RA-LIN and Associates of Carrollton.
“We’re always proud to do work in our own backyard,” Krontz said. “It’s a pride point that we always like to shine light on whenever we can.”
School officials said the new Eastside High School was expected to be finished by January 2022, and Krontz said everything ECI was in control of appeared to remain on track.
During a report to school board members in November 2020, the total cost for the school’s construction stood at $59.48 million.
Krontz said ECI had also been part of several other local Newton County schools’ construction, including the current Newton High School built in 2011. Since 2007, the company has played a role in building Liberty Middle School (2007), Newton College and Career Academy (2010), Newton High (2011) and Porter Auditorium (2016). Krontz said ECI’s footprint had stretched across many other school systems within the metro-Atlanta area.
Though the company completes its fair share of commercial and residential projects, the majority of ECI’s business comes through working on schools, Krontz said, and it’s a place that the company has grown to enjoy over the years.
“It’s a niche that ECI got into not only for the numerous work opportunities, but also because it’s so rewarding to know that we’re, really, helping improve our county — providing a great school for our area students,” Krontz said.
Krontz said there have been many workers visit a school to follow up on a job, and in doing so, teachers would have their students thank the worker for their role in the construction.
“It’s just awesome,” he said.
ECI was started by a husband and wife from Lithonia — Ken and Beth Williams, Krontz said. In 1984, the Williams’ took their electrical expertise and began working out of a single van for about three years before able to move into an office space and, eventually, moving its headquarters to Covington.
Today, ECI employs more than 100 workers, both full-time and temporary, but the company’s most significant growth has come within the last 10 years, Krontz said.
Despite the company’s growth, ECI tries to stay involved and hold a local presence within the Newton County community by hosting networking events and offering apprenticeship programs to help residents prepare for the workforce and find employment.
“Most of us who work here, live here in Newton County, too,” ECI Media Assistant Crystal Rogers said. “We love to be involved with the county and want to always continue that and give back in the ways that we can.”