Case Studies

Premier Power Maintenance: The Go-to Contractor for Expert Power Distribution

  • Written by: Premier Power Maintenance: The Go-to Contractor for Expert Power Distribution
  • Produced by: Premier Power Maintenance: The Go-to Contractor for Expert Power Distribution
  • Estimated reading time: 5 mins

For Premier Power Maintenance (Premier), business, as usual, is a family affair. The husband-and-wife team of Andy and Eileen Templeman formed the Indianapolis-based company in 1985. “My father was originally working for one of our competitors,” admits Kevin Templeman, second-generation owner of Premier. “They were taking shortcuts and providing inadequate service. He left to start his own business, because he knew he could do it better.”

After 28 years in the industry, Premier has grown to be one of the leading high-voltage electrical contractors in the Midwest. Although the company is based in Indianapolis, Premier has regional offices in Ashland, Ky., and Decatur, Ala., as well as many satellite locations.

“We’ve done work in at least 34 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands,” details Kevin. “We’re on the road traveling more than in the office, and we’re eventually looking to cover more ground on the West Coast, as well as adding offices further south in Georgia and Florida.”

A Second-generation Success

For the Templeman family’s second generation, growing the family-owned and -operated business is a priority. “My brother Brian is in charge of our in-house full-service breaker shop at our corporate office,” details Kevin. “My younger sister, Megan, is finishing up college; she is majoring in business management, accounting and human resources. The three of us are teaming up and will fully take over when my parents are ready for retirement.”

Kevin admits the opportunity for expansion hasn’t come without hard times. “At one point, back in the mid-90s, my father was down to about three employees,” he explains. “He pulled them into his office and gave them two options: shut down shop or learn everything he knows; they chose to learn, and now we’re up to over 70 employees and growing fast.”

According to Kevin, it takes a special individual to work at Premier. “We don’t have a lot of employee turnover, but if you’re not fit to work here, we figure that out pretty quickly,” he says. “Not everyone is cut out for this type of demanding work. We look for a solid work ethic, dedication and enthusiasm. You also have to get along with everyone; we are more of a family than just coworkers and that is the type of work environment we strive for. Our big out-of-town outings are always fun because everyone gets to see everybody from the other offices that we may not have seen in awhile. It really is a great place to work and we intend to keep it that way.”

Jerry Koeing, senior construction project manager at Premier, exemplifies such dedication. Aside from new construction and renovation, Premier also has an engineering and maintenance division, which is led by Alan Holt, northern region operations manager. “Our eastern region office is run by Jay Milstead, while Johnnie McClung leads our southern region office,” Kevin says. “We also have multiple site supervisors at our satellite offices. Alvin Jones [director of operations] coordinates between all locations to keep things running smoothly.”

The company is involved in a range of projects within the commercial and industrial electrical sectors. “Every job is different, so it’s a constant learning experience,” Kevin says. “I focus half of my time in the office working on business development, but I like being in the field, as well, because I’ve always been more hands on and want to have knowledge of all the services we offer. I don’t want to be an owner that has no idea what is going on outside of the office. If my guys are out on an emergency call out at 3 a.m., I’m going to be right there with them. That’s how my dad has always been and that’s the work ethic Brian and I have.”

It’s All in the Name

“Our dedication to quality performance is in our name,” continues Kevin. “We strive to be the leading, premier high-voltage company in our industry visible through our expert installations, construction, maintenance and repairs. Although our core business is in preventative maintenance, we have all kinds of specialty equipment and skilled project managers who are geared toward construction.”

Providing exemplary end-products is a key factor in ensuring Premier’s continued success. As the senior project manager, Jerry witnesses firsthand some of Premier’s most interesting work. “We just finished a brand new $3.5 million substation in Tipmont, Ind., in December 2012,” Jerry details. “We were the prime contractor, only subcontracting out site and concrete work to Swanson Excavating.”

Premier also performed an eight-month, $1.5 million job for Rolls-Royce on an occupied site. “We changed out the 13kV line up that feeds the whole plant by taking it down a little at a time so they can keep running while the work is being done,” explains Jerry. “We do this by moving all of the power over to one-half of the substation while we install the new core, until we can get everything tied back into the new portion.”

Although operating this way often extends the timeline of projects, it draws attention to Premier’s ability to perform on an active site. “We’ve earned a lot of contacts from performing on fully operational plants,” reveals Jerry. “However, safety is of the utmost importance and we don’t ever work on anything that’s running or hot.”

The team is also completing a 500kV substation upgrade down in Decatur, Ala., at Nucor Steel, which is about a $5 million upgrade. “It involves adding new 500kV transformers, circuit breakers and protective relays,” says Kevin.

“We are also bidding a one-year $15 million substation construction project at NASA, which entails upgrading all of their existing 480v, 5kV and 13kV equipment, which will be the biggest single job we’ve ever taken on,” Kevin continues. “This will also hopefully be the beginning of our Florida office, if all goes according to plan.”

Jerry adds that Premier’s construction division is currently working at the Veterans Hospital in Indianapolis to replace two outdated generators with three new ones. “We’re putting in temporary systems so they can keep running,” details Jerry. “It’s about a $1.5 million installation, which is a follow-up to a recent $6.5 million installation we did recently at the same hospital. We really take pride in being able to handle large outages and sizable jobs.”

In 2009 Premier’s success came to a halt, as the economy rained hard on the operation. “We had to lay off a couple of people, but it actually helped us narrow down the real dedicated team players,” admits Kevin. “My parents did their part, too. They literally didn’t take a single dollar during that year; instead, they lived off their savings to keep the company afloat.”

It is evident that the Templemans are in business for the long haul, and truly invested in what is best for Premier and its employees. “In the end, we pulled through,” shares Kevin. “No matter what, people need reliable electricity and they realize quickly that it’s not something you can sacrifice or slack off on when it comes to electrical equipment.”

Kevin is confident Premier will continue to grow in 2013 by providing the quality, trusted service the company has had for almost three decades. Kevin, Brian and Megan – with the amorous support of their parents – will grow Premier Power Maintenance under the same understanding and dedication to becoming the best in the industry.

For more information about Premier Power Maintenance, please visit:

Published on: June 29, 2013

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