WBE Founder Shows Her Metal
From Milan to Manhattan, Triton Builders’ Stacy Guercia-Baldea
When Stacy Guercia-Baldea was studying brand management in Milan, Italy, she probably never imagined that a few years later she would be working on projects for a major city event or helping communities recover from disaster.
Yet, those are the type of jobs this entrepreneurial woman faces on a daily basis—and she’s exceptionally good at it. Guercia-Baldea is the Founder and President of Triton Builders Inc., a company she formed in 2008 to manufacture, supply and install iron, steel and miscellaneous metals for a range of commercial and municipal clients.
Formerly an owner’s rep and construction manager, she started the business with $500, and self-performed all jobs by herself in the first year. Today, her company’s annual revenue is in the six-figure range. The company, which now employs 15 people, is a certified Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE) and Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) by the city of New York, New York State, the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey, and the New York City School Construction Authority.
The success of the company is a testament to Guercia-Baldea’s strong work ethic, sharp management skills and a distinctive trailblazing spirit.
Filling a Niche
Guercia-Baldea earned a bachelor’s degree in health care business administration from San Francisco State University in 1999 and then went on to earn a master’s degree in brand management from the Istituto Marangoni in Milan in 2005. Upon receiving her master’s degree, Stacy went to work as an owner’s representative for companies like Diesel, Barneys New York, Steve & Barry’s, and Equinox fitness clubs to manage and perform construction of luxury retail stores throughout New York City and across the nation.
Notable projects include The Grove in Los Angeles, the Barneys New York flagship store in New York City, the Grand Central Terminal expansion and numerous Steve & Barry’s retail stores. She traveled about 8,000 miles a week, for months at a time.
Guercia-Baldea recalls, “I worked daily with some of the market’s largest general contractors helping make sure owners and project teams had what they needed to get jobs done. During that time, I learned a lot about the manufacturing, installation and functional applications of ground-up core and shell and interior fit-outs, using a variety of building materials." As the economy deteriorated in 2008, many of these companies began tightening their belts.
“I met with several large companies, all of which needed to downsize, but also needed to have a local New York construction manager onsite to oversee projects,” she explains. “I filled that niche. As I ran the projects, I would bid and self-perform the miscellaneous metals contracts to supply fences, stairs and railings. As time went on and my company’s reputation grew, so did the number and complexity of projects.”
Guercia-Baldea formally established Triton Builders in 2008, at the age of 31. After nine years in the business, her sole business focus today is miscellaneous metals, fencing and railing.
Post-Hurricane Sandy recovery and repair jobs catapulted Triton Builders into the mainstream construction market.
Guercia-Baldea says, “We provided and installed fencing, gates and stainless steel furnishings to public and private organizations in the aftermath of the disaster. In a short time, we put up over 30,000 feet of fencing quickly and securely—and we were prepared to do more. The unions took notice of our fast, quality work, as did the general contractors.”
“[Post-Hurricane Sandy] we provided and installed fencing, gates and stainless steel furnishings to public and private organizations.” Stacy Guercia-Baldea, Founder and President, Triton Builders
Since that time, Triton Builders has been awarded contracts to supply and install the fencing used for many high-profile New York City projects for owners, contractors, subcontractors and suppliers.
Crews have furnished and installed custom wire fences for major contractors, furnished and installed steel supports for the chilled water pipes for the new World Trade Center, furnished custom-welded wire fencing and railings for the landmarked NYC High Line at the Western Rail Yard. They have installed galvanized backstops and hoop rails in the ball fields of Battery Park City and also fabricated and installed sea rail at the 34th Street Waterfront Park. Additionally, all of the backstops and railings at Bush Terminal are from Triton Builders, as is the fence used for the first phase of the Double Track Project on the Long Island Rail Road’s Ronkonkoma branch.
As well, the company has subcontracted its services to hospitals, hotels, parking decks, office buildings, schools and athletic parks and other forms of new construction. Guercia-Baldea’s company is currently working on metal installations at the new Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale and the new Hunters Point Library in Long Island City.
When asked about the biggest challenge that she and her team have faced when installing miscellaneous metal systems, Guercia-Baldea immediately responds, “Logistics ... imagine having to put up and take down 25,000 feet of fencing in four nights in a busy urban environment like New York City.” She adds, “Our team really enjoys taking on unique projects that, to others, might seem impossible. I have learned that if I stay positive and am present with my team, we can overcome the most difficult obstacles.”
She’ll need all of her positive outlook and impressive management skills in the coming years. Along with running her growing company, she and her husband have a daughter and identical twin boys who keep them hopping. She’s also active with the Women Construction Owners & Executives USA. The Women Builders Council of New York selected Guercia-Baldea as one of its 2016 Next Generation of Women Builders, calling her an “innovative trailblazer.”
Guercia-Baldea believes it is important for today’s women in construction to serve as role models for the next generation of women who have an interest in the industry. She concludes, “Together, we can raise awareness about all the opportunities in the exciting world of construction. Every day brings new challenges and the chance to find innovative and creative solutions to very difficult problems.”
If you want to talk with her about the miscellaneous metals business or the construction industry, look for Guercia-Baldea along the streets, bridges and highways of New York City and its surrounding areas … likely she or her crew are there placing fences, railings and gates.