Our History

The company was formed in 1947 by George Stevenson and Matt Williams. They carried out residential and commercial work much the same as we do today.  Rob Cunningham the current Managing Director of Stevenson & Williams father worked for the company in the early days having returned from the 2nd World War and completed his carpentry training with Stevenson & Williams. Matt and George took in Dormer Woulfe as a partner and Dormer worked under their direction for many years. Rob started his apprenticeship with Stevenson & Williams in 1973 and Dormer Woulfe took over full ownership the same year. Dormer took on John Turnbull and Neville Black as partners.  Dormer was a larger than life character but unfortunately developed heart problems that eventually led to him being one of the first New Zealanders to have a full heart transplant. This gave Dormer another 12 years of life.  Paul Ritchie joined the company in 1982 as a high performing Foreman from  Downer & Co. John and Neville took over the company when Dormer became ill and it was 1985 when Rob Cunningham and Paul Ritchie were offered a shareholding.

Neville Black retired in 1990 which left John, Paul and Rob managing the company.  Ill health meant that John had an early retirement in 1995 and sadly he passed away in 1997.

Rob and Paul owned and managed the company until 2006 when Gary Turner and Warren Laing purchased shares.  Paul retired in 2010 and the current owners are Rob, Gary, Warren and Jason Esplin.

Our People

Our high quality services are derived from the combined experience, abilities and knowledge of all members of our staff.

We have the advantage of loyal long term committed staff members in management, administration, on the construction sites and in the joinery workshop.

Rob Cunningham

Managing Director
Rob CunninghamImage Shadow Frame

Rob started with Stevenson & Williams as an apprentice carpenter in 1972.  He travelled to Ireland on completion of his apprenticeship with his wife Dallas to work in the construction industry on numerous building sites. On returning to New Zealand he continued his association with Stevenson & Williams to work as a Foreman on various projects before purchasing shares in the company and on completion of his quantity surveying studies left the tools and moved into a managerial role.  He is now a Registered Quantity Surveyor and is a long term member of the NZ Institute of Quantity Surveyors.

He has a long association with the Otago Master Builders Assn. in particular with apprentice training in the region.  He is the current chairperson of the Regional Advisory Group reporting to the Building & Construction Industry Training Organisation.

Rob is a Licensed Building Practitioner in the Carpentry and Site 2 classes.

He has a lifetime of experience with Stevenson & Williams in the construction industry and continues to enjoy working in the contracting environment. 

Gary Turner

Director/Joinery Manager
Gary TurnerImage Shadow Frame

Gary was educated at Kings High School and attained School Certificate, before leaving King's when he was offered a joinery apprenticeship with Mitchell Bros Builders. 

He completed his apprenticeship with Mitchells and was awarded the Otago Joiner of the Year Award in 1975.                                     

He soon became a leading hand in the joinery factory but was ambitious and changed roles when Mitchell Bros established the aluminium joinery company known as Mitchell Almet.  Gary quickly learnt all aspects of commercial and domestic aluminium joinery and soon became factory manager.

After 20 years working for Mitchell Bros and Mitchell Almet he was offered the opportunity to join the team at Stevenson & Williams to build up their joinery division.  

He has been the President of the Otago Joinery Manufacturers Assn. and President of the New Zealand Joinery Manufacturers Federation.  He is currently a director of the Joinery Industry Training Organisation as representative on behalf of all Joiners in New Zealand.  He is committed to the training of young people for this industry and also to our clientele as he thinks that he offers a personal expertise to this industry and to our clients.

Gary has a lifetime of experience in joinery, has seen many changes and continues to learn and come up with new ideas to make your experience in joinery the best it can be.

Warren Laing

Director/Contracts Supervisor
Warren LaingImage Shadow Frame

Warren began his building apprenticeship with Stevenson & Williams in 1977.  He progressed to being a Foreman on various projects ranging from commercial alterations to major commercial projects including being the Foreman on the East Otago Community Centre in Waikouaiti and four buildings in the Otago Correctional Facility (Milton prison).  He purchased shares in Stevenson & Williams in 2005 and moved to the contracts supervisor role in 2009.

He is an executive board member of the Otago Master Builders Assn. and is a licensed building practitioner.

Warren is married to Janice and they have three adult children and 2 grandsons.  He is family orientated, spending a large amount of time with his children and their partners and his grandchildren.  He has a keen interest in gardening and landscape design and until a recent injury was an active competitive squash player.

He has a lifetime of experience in the building industry ranging from house building to commercial construction and continues to enjoy mentoring new foremen and working within the construction industry.

Jason Esplin

Quantity Surveyor
Jason EsplinImage Shadow Frame

After completing 2 years full time study at the Otago Polytechnic in 1989 and 1990, Jason's career in the construction industry began with Stevenson & Williams in April 1991 where he was employed as a Quantity Surveyor. 

During the next few years he was able to study part time and gain a New Zealand Certificate in Quantity Surveying.  He is also a Member of the New Zealand Institute of Quantity Surveyors.                                  

In 2009 Jason became a shareholder and part of the management group within the company.

Jason enjoys the construction industry environment, being part of many successful residential and commercial project teams over the last 20 years and is looking forward to many more years with Stevenson & Williams Ltd.

Quality of Work

We pride ourselves on our quality workmanship in all of our service areas.  We are committed to ensuring that the end product is something for the customer to enjoy and be proud of.

Health & Safety

Stevenson & Williams Ltd are focused on maintaining our ability to provide a safe working environment for all of our staff and the general public.

We have been members of the ACC "Workplace Safety Management Practises" (WSMP) since 1997.  We were one of the first construction companies in New Zealand to achieve the Tertiary level of compliance and have maintained the highest level during six bi-annual independent audits conducted on behalf of ACC.

 

Van Signage

Van SignageImage Shadow Frame

You may have noticed that our van signage is different to our company logo used in all other signage and stationery.

The original van signage was hand painted by local sign writer and ex All Black coach Eric Watson.  Eric had a studio in the corner of our workshop in Prince Albert Road and we enjoyed his company on a daily basis.

When a new van was purchased, Eric would get out his paper template covered with pin holes and apply powder through the holes to mark out the logo on the van doors.  He then hand painted the logo with a variety of brushes while sitting on a box beside the van.  We had a lot of respect for Eric and admired his work.  In due course Eric retired and technology overtook hand painted signage, however to respect the tradition of our long association with Eric we retain his signage on the vans and will continue to do so even though all other signage was updated and altered in 1998.