Kim Whitin knows a lot about cement. As owner and manager of Tri-State Concrete & Excavation in Fort Collins, she runs a thriving company that offers the full gamut of residential and commercial services. From driveways and retaining walls to decorative concrete, basements and foundations, Tri-State does all the excavation and site prep as well as pouring and finish work.
She and her husband, Erik, started the business after relocating to Stove Prairie from North Carolina in 2010. They had operated Tri-State Concrete there for a number of years—until the recession hit and real estate work ground to a halt. Still, starting over in Colorado was exciting for them and their two sons, Rayden and Talan. And then the High Park Fire erupted. The Whitins’ home burned to the ground. “We lost everything. But we started over again,” said Kim. “Erik helped our friends and neighbors in the fire area rebuild, and I started handling the concrete work coming from Fort Collins. Now I do all the bidding and project management, and Erik helps our crews wherever he’s needed.” Kim runs a tight ship, upholding high standards for her employees’ behavior on jobsites as well as the quality of the finished work. “We feel it’s really important that we stand out in an industry that often has a bad reputation and unethical practices,” she said. “We carry all the proper insurances, hire workers as employees rather than using 1099 contractors, and give our customers great value. And we’re very, very particular about our morals and values. I can’t just send anybody to your backyard to do a patio.” Serving her community and employees with integrity and kindness is important to Kim. Tri-State has helped a number of local non-profits with in-kind support during construction, including FOCO Café and the Poudre Initiative. Of course, Kim’s family is the heart of her community. The Whitins live in Laporte now, where Rayden dirt bikes on their backyard track and Talan, who is autistic, loves to watch the movies he borrows from Poudre River Public Library District’s Old Town library, which he visits several times a week. Kim hopes that one day Rayden will take over the family business and she’ll be able to start up another venture that suits Talan’s passions and strengths. Because that’s what Kim Whitin does: cement community through business. As a Fort Collins Chamber member, Tri-State Concrete helps bring business home.