Frank Goodhart Sr. began his career as a sheet metal worker in 1898, as an apprentice in a small two-man shop in downtown Lancaster.
Today, the steel fabrication and installation company that bears his name has 145 employees and a resume that includes projects across the United States and around the world.
Frank Sr. founded Goodhart Sons Inc. in 1935 in the same building where he began his apprenticeship. What started as a one-man operation now operates out of 175,000 square feet of production space on Horseshoe Road.
For more than 80 years, the company has managed to grow exponentially while maintaining the honest, hard-working values that made Frank Sr. a success. Continuing that legacy has been a priority for each generation of Goodharts that has followed in his footsteps.
Today, the fourth-generation company is run by Frank Sr.’s grandsons, Gary, David and Randy, and great-grandsons, Marc, Chad, Matt and Mike.
Goodhart Sons serves the power generation, alternative energy, defense, food and beverage, aggregate/cement plant, steel mill and foundry, and pollution control industries. Its projects have ranged from an emission control abatement system in the mountains of West Virginia to a recycling plant in the Midwest.
Although the company worked mainly in light gauge steel in its early days, it now tackles much larger, heavier gauge projects.
That could be storage tanks for anything from coal to chocolate, or pollution control devices for manufacturing plants.
One of Goodhart Sons more unique projects was constructing a hovercraft used by the state of Alaska to transport loads down frozen river beds.
With an engineering department equipped with the most comprehensive 2D and 3D CAD software, Goodhart Sons is able to take any project from concept to completion.
But the company does much more.
“Not only do we install projects we fabricate, but we travel the U.S. and abroad to install many types of OEM equipment and production line, as well as plant relocations,” says President Marc Goodhart.
As a result, companies look to Goodhart Sons to handle plant modifications that might involve moving a piece of machinery or relocating an assembly line. With its expert project management capabilities, Goodhart Sons can handle the most complicated plant shut-downs with ease.
The company’s field crew of millwrights, welders and electricians is licensed in 44 states.
Goodhart Sons also makes safety a priority by providing generous incentives to the fabrication, installation and operations divisions for completing work without accidents. This is critical in an industry where a company can be eliminated from the bid process simply for a poor safety record.
The company ensures a safe workplace by investing in new equipment, upgrading technology and modernizing its production space.
As long-time, loyal employees retire, Goodhart Sons is engaging a new generation of professionals capable of delivering high-quality steel fabrication, certified welding, forming, cutting and burning, precision machining and final assembly of the company’s products.
Working with nearby Millersville University, Lancaster Career and Technology Center and Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology, the company has established a program, which allows interns to shadow tenured employees in the spirit of passing the torch.
For more information, visit goodhartsons.com.