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This is Fred Ball for Zions Bank, speaking on business.
When Robert John Hicken was 14 years old in the Heber Valley, he started working in the masonry contracting business. He told me he "carried mud" for several different companies. It was hard work but Robert's family had long been in the farming and ranching business and hard work was the norm for the youngster.
Nearly 20 years later, Robert Hicken is still working hard in the stone and masonry business. But he no longer is the young man "carrying mud." Now he is the proprietor of several significant, sizeable businesses serving customers all over the country.
Robert recounted for me how the company started in the back of his grandfather's corral, east of Heber. This was a piece of property that was not being farmed and was a great place for the fledgling company to become established. Then, the Central Utah Water Project needed that land and property was found that would accommodate the company and expected expansion.
Robert started RJ Enterprises in 1988. His partner, Paul Ballif, joined the company in 1993. Paul had studied architecture at BYU where he met Robert. He gained work experience in concrete forming and placement as well as in residential construction. Business grew very rapidly and five years after joining the firm, Paul became a shareholder in the business.
RJ Enterprises soon became the parent company for two organizations that would expand the capabilities, products and services for the stone construction trade. Mountain Valley Stone, under the direction of Tony Branca, operates out of Brown's Canyon in Summit County where they quarry blond sandstone. Delta Stone Products is a retail stone yard and architectural stone cutting operation in Heber City. RJ Enterprises continues to operate as a stone masonry contractor with a reputation for quality and fine craftsmanship.
Tomorrow, I'll give you more information about Mountain Valley Stone and Delta Stone Products and how they have generated an outstanding reputation for beautiful products and exemplary service.
For Zions Bank, I'm Fred Ball. I'm speaking on business.