Merit Electric Company was formed in June 1996 by Larry Neuman, who had been working for a large contractor over 26 years. As happens in many companies, Larry started to notice a disconnect between the clients he worked with and the company he worked for. He knew from experience that it was possible to deliver a better product through stronger relationships with the client - it just took a change of focus. So in June of 1996, backed by the support of his wife of 50 years, Larry pulled the plug at his old company and turned on the lights at Merit Electric.
Soon after starting the business, Larry was joined by his daughter, Laura, who returned to her hometown of St. Paul to take over front office duties. In 1997, Larry’s son Jeff, who had also been working for a large contractor, made the switch and joined the team. The three knew a great customer experience started with treating them like family - with complete honesty and integrity. Merit Electric applied this core value to each project and steadily grew its number of clients and employees through Larry’s retirement in 2006 when the company was sold to Laura and Jeff. During the economic downfall of 2006 -2010, there were times when it was a struggle to keep the lights on, but Merit Electric dug in and kept the business running, backed by the quality of their team and the relationships they had built with their clients.
Each day is filled with new challenges and opportunities and the team at Merit Electric Company continues striving to ensure all jobs are completed on time, on budget and correctly the first time - just like you would do for any family member.
Jeff Neuman started in March of 1997 with Merit Electric. He worked as a journeyman electrician until August of 2001. During that time, he also obtained his Masters Electrical license. In august of 2001 Jeff Started working in the office as an estimator/project manager and in 2006 His sister Laura and he purchased the company from his father. Jeff and Laura are currently Co-owners of Merit Electric Company and Jeff holds the Masters license for the company.
Laura Baldwin graduated from the MN School of Business in the Court Reporting Field in 1992. Started working for Merit Electric in 1996 Previous to her employment at Merit Electric she worked in the Human Resources Department at a large medical complex in Duluth, MN. Wanting to get back to her home town she decided on coming to work for her family business. Currently Laura runs the front end of the office answering the telephones, scheduling electricians, billings, etc.
Rich Chermak started with Merit Electric as a journeyman electrician in 1998. In 2003, he took on the responsibility of an estimator/project manager. Beyond power and lighting he also has experience with mechanical projects and Solar Panel Installation. His job prior to Merit Electric included working for a mechanical contractor and served as a United States Marine during the 1st Gulf War.
Steve Shalikow has been employed with the company since early 2006 after attending Dunwoody College of Technology for an Electrical Construction and Maintenance Degree. Main duties include performing electrical estimates and project managing.
"I approached Merit Electric because of the positive reputation and feedback I heard in the marketplace. Merit Electric helped me by being responsive and having the ability to oversee multiple projects with solutions in a timely manner. The results are always positive. One thing I liked, was their ability to be our single point of contact for multiple situations that arise on a single day. I find the experience extremely beneficial. Merit has become more like a partner vs. a vendor in our day to day operations. I would recommend Merit Electric to people who need a Partner with their electrical needs." Chelsie Johnson, Sr. REM CBRE