Adobe Stock / Stephen Coburn
Robyn’e Garton founded the Pink Belts Roofing Company in 2010 to serve the Edmonton area of Canada. With the rapid growth, the prospects of expanding operations to parts of the United States are starting to be attractive.
Garton, 47, had worked as a property manager and routinely dealt with contractors. That gave her the idea of starting her first roofing company, Roof Surgeon. Garton noted that craft women were always the first to lose their jobs in an economic downturn.
“There is a discriminatory factor there because they are women,” she said. “I started thinking about it and then decided to start an all-women roofing company – and that kind of went through the roof.”
The company with a core crew of 10 to 15 employees focuses on the roofing of residential buildings and, at least for the time being, does not deal with commercial flat roof work.
“When I started pink belts, I was ridiculed,” she helps. “People thought I couldn’t last a year. You just take it. You have to have thick skin in this business. I’ve had death threats, hate mail, my tires have been tampered with. All that tells me is to shake up the industry, what to do. “
Garton did more than just survive. Business was so good that she was considering moving to Hurricane Alley in the United States, an area where roofers typically have a lot of work.