MacKenzie Door Company
- Written by: Ivy Carter
- Produced by: Chuck McKenna
- Estimated reading time: 5 mins
MacKenzie Door Company’s (MDC) 70-year history is a tale of how a young man’s dedication to hard work and customer service developed into an industry institution; it was founder Fred MacKenzie’s commitment to hard work that first landed the 19-year-old son of a traveling preacher a job in the door-closer business. Fred’s attitude and values impressed Oscar C. Rixson, developer of the concealed floor-type closer, so greatly that he hired him on as an office boy for Rixson’s New York sales representative.
Fred founded MDC in 1944; he considered a good work ethic a primary asset and the company still believes in that principle today. Though outwardly the firm has changed significantly, some things remain the same. As a result, the firm’s dedication to serving clients remains unsurpassed.
MDC has become the leader in the commercial door sales, installation, service and product hardware representation industry. The firm now boasts 105 employees, 36 service and installation trucks, as well as a premier reputation for customer satisfaction.
In 1958 Fred’s son, George, began his career in the service section of the business. Responding to customers’ requests, the company began expanding its service capacity to handle more than just Rixson products. “We’d be servicing the one product and customers wanted us to service something else we hadn’t sold,” George explains.
In the 1960s the firm moved into the door replacement business. “The change was a response to customer demand,” George continues. “They liked what we did and they wanted us to do more for them.” Door replacement further expanded after the firm was approached to represent what was then the Stanley Magic Door line of power doors. MDC quickly became the leading automatic door service and installation company in the greater New York City area.
The company soon grew to represent Ellison balanced doors and other specialty door manufacturers, as well. The division, now headed by Joseph Dai, became Ellison’s No. 1 distributor and product representative in the country. According to George, Ellison’s unique balanced door design and Old World craftsmanship is second to none for both aesthetics and quality.
Roger Soucek, current president of MDC, began his career with the company in 1979 as a part-time employee; he worked his way up through the ranks and stepped into his current position in 2005.
“I knew Fred outside of the business,” Roger explains, tracing his roots with Fred back to the ’70s. “He was a man of vision and integrity. I started out here as a 16-year-old, working part time. I learned the business from the ground-up and was able to absorb most of what I know from our many long-term and dedicated employees.”
Roger now leads a company of dedicated employees who provide a number of unique door installations to clients within a 100-mile radius of New York City. His long tenure at MDC and standing relationships within the industry allow him a unique perspective. “We have been doing business in New York for seven decades,” he notes. “That sets us apart from most companies in our industry. It allows us to offer automatic and manual door solutions for a variety of clients in a number of different commercial sectors.”
Wide Variety of Customers and Products
Customers of MDC come from a wide range of backgrounds. The company has installed doors at many corporate and major retail outlets, hotels and health care facilities. “We do everything from the style of doors you walk through at Home Depot, to high-end entrances at some of the most prestigious buildings in the Northeast,” Roger says. “Most of our work is local, but we do have some national exposure through installations at companies such as Party City, Public Storage and the Ellison accounts.”
Much of MDC’s high quality service and performance can be traced back to the quality of the company’s relationships. It is evident that MDC has built a solid rapport and status with its clients, suppliers and subcontractors alike.
“We have some subcontractors we work with regularly,” Roger continues. “We also work with a handful of major manufacturers and a small group of other top-end suppliers.” MDC offers quality door solutions from some of the most recognized brands in the business, including Stanley, Ellison Bronze, Boon Edam, Karpen Steel, Crane Revolving Door, Rixson, Dorma, International Revolving Door, Tomax, Sellmar and Chase.
As the economy makes a comeback, Roger and the team have been picking up several unique installations. “We recently finished a large project at Resorts World Casino in Queens New York,” he says. “In New Jersey we worked at the Picatinny Arsenal, multiple public and private schools, and we had a big project with Novartis Pharmaceuticals, as well as New York Presbyterian Hospital. Over the next few months we have a number of jobs booked for some of the major local hospitals, businesses and colleges, including SUNY Downstate, Madison Square Garden, Aqueduct Race Track, NYU and Brooklyn College.”
According to Roger, the company has accomplished some impressive feats. “We have also furnished some beautiful Ellison balance doors at the Pier 79 NY Waterways Ferry Terminal, which is quickly growing into the major transportation hub between New York City and the surrounding waterway areas,” he continues. “We had another big job at Saks Fifth Avenue, which is the Flagship Store for the Company. We are also representing Ellison bronze in furnishing the balanced doors at all the entry’s into the new World Trade Center Sites.”
Staying Ahead in the Recovery
When Hurricane Sandy left a wake of destruction along the coastline, many of MDC’s customers were forced to rebuild. “That has been a huge challenge for everyone,” Roger explains. “The whole area was underwater. We had a lot of logistical issues with the storm, because of the loss of power, access to our customers and the resulting demand for service. We are doing everything we can to ensure that we can meet our customers’ wants, needs and desires.”
One poignant example was a project MDC recently finished at Menorah Home and Hospital (Menorah) in Brooklyn. MDC’s custom door division was contracted to provide the new entry for Menorah when the building was constructed approximately 10 years ago. “When Sandy hit it destroyed the lobby, including the main entry to the hospital,” Roger says. “When everything was settled Menorah once again turned to our custom door division to furnish and install the replacement entry.”
Roger has a positive outlook for the recovery, and the company has a busy year ahead. “I think we are coming out of this recession slowly but surely,” he says. “We are seeing many positive signs and it looks pretty hopeful. Over the next few years I think we will continue to dominate the market. The beauty of the door industry is that you have to walk through them to get into every building.” Whether or not doors are just a convenience or designed to make a statement, MacKenzie Door Company provides a consistent level of quality and service that clients have come to expect.
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