By Eric Woods
Photo by Terry Farmer
For more than 50 years, B&B Electric has been serving the needs of businesses in central Illinois. Todd Brinkman Sr. had been working for South Town Electric Radio & TV with his father, Fred Brinkman, when they decided to take a leap of faith and start their own company in 1962. The goal was to concentrate more on commercial service versus residential, and they began working on small and medium-sized commercial projects in the central Illinois area.
Todd Brinkman Jr. would join his father at B&B Electric in 1977 as an apprentice. He remained with the company, becoming president in 1992 shortly before his father retired. Now, Tim Brinkman is the fourth generation of the family to join the company, becoming a partial owner in 2017 after completing the apprenticeship program and serving as project manager for several years. All four generations have been focused on customer satisfaction, whether small service jobs or large commercial projects.
Employees of B&B Electric agree that the company is a wonderful place to be employed. “I believe B&B is the best place to work because they put their customers first, are very friendly and conscientious of doing a great job,” said Tammy Etherton, the company’s office manager. “Everyone is willing to work very hard and help each other out at any time.”
“One thing that I think shows a great place to work would be a history of employees accumulating many years of service. B&B is just that company,” said project manager Seth Garner. “The numbers show 30-40 years of service for many past employees. This proves people are treated fairly. You do not have numbers like this by not doing something right.”
The company has had the honor of working on some of the most prominent buildings in the city of Springfield. This includes the exterior lighting of the Capitol dome as well as the renovation of the House and Senate chambers for the State Capitol. Also, a number of medical facilities have utilized the expertise of B&B Electric, including St. John’s Hospital, Memorial Medical Center, Springfield Clinic 1st and the Orthopedic Center of Illinois.
“In the past year, we have been fortunate to work on some amazing projects,” said Todd Brinkman Jr. “We completed the LRS addition and solar projects and the Memorial Medical Center’s electric service relocation. We are continuing to work on the Taylorville Memorial addition and the St. John’s Hospital NICU project. We also feel very honored to have been nominated for best electrical contractor in the Springfield area the past few years.”
Now beginning its seventh decade of operation, B&B Electric continues to run strong. A key element to the company’s success has been the people.
“My favorite part of working for B&B is everyone is so friendly and easy to get along with. We can joke around and laugh in the office and that makes it easy to want to come to work every day,” said Etherton.
Garner is also a fan of the individuals he gets to work with every day. “The Brinkmans are the one common denominator through all the years. They allow their employees the opportunity to grow and achieve,” he said.
Goals for the future of B&B Electric are simple, according to Brinkman. It all centers on education, the customers and remaining the local electrical contractor of choice. “We hope to continue achieving the highest level of customer satisfaction and to stay up on the ever-changing technology in the electrical trade,” he said.