Steve Troutman is in his machine everyday. He just jumps in his excavating truck and goes to work.
That work can be digging a foundation for a home or grading a yard for landscaping. Perhaps a big hole needs to be dug to accommodate a future pool.
Need a load of dirt or gravel, he can get that for you too. Troutman can even tear up parking lots and driveways and demolish houses.
During the housing boom 10 years ago, Troutman established Troutman Excavating in Minooka. Ninety percent of his business was residential excavating in new subdivisions that were popping up quickly throughout the villages of and . Two years ago, he moved the business to a bigger location in .
The company is currently contracted with Vulcan Materials. Troutman’s excavating team strips the ground at Vulcan’s plants for preparation of mining stone, he said.
Fortunately, the excavating company has been busy all year, Troutman said. He said the mild weather is a big plus to being able to land more jobs.
“I’ve been thankful that people will go out and use (a) small company like me,” Troutman said. “Anything after Thanksgiving is a bonus. In the spring we are busy, but when it rains, it’s not good. That’s when I catch up on paperwork.”
In 2008, Troutman Excavating was awarded . He said that was a great accomplishment.
“I always wanted to have my own business and pictured this when I was little,” Troutman said. “I can make my own hours and be there for my kids' sport and school activities.”
Troutman’s daughter Taylor, a senior at and his son Zachary, an eighth grader at , are the apple of his eyes. However, Troutman also enjoys giving back to the community and seeing other children reap the benefits.
Troutman Excavating has been a proud sponsor of the Channahon Baseball League for 10 years and is also a sponsor of the . Troutman’s son has played for both clubs.
“The biggest reward is to see the little kids have my company name on their shirts,” Troutman said. “When the coach points me out to the kids, they get excited. It’s like they were meeting the President of the USA.”
Troutman has had the opportunity to sponsor and volunteer for the . He said that all children need to see these athletes and the effort they put into trying to achieve a goal of completing a race; not necessarily winning it.
“These kids are just amazing and they give 110 percent,” Troutman said. "Everyone in the crowd is cheering. It is priceless.”