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2011 Forty Under 40: Adam Gilliatte

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About me...
Adam Gilliatte
Owner
Gilliatte General Contractors
39
Web sites:
On my hip:
iPhone
Most-used apps:
Maps
Messages
Calendar
photos
camera
calculator
e-mail
iPod
Safari
compass
device locator
contacts
Bloomberg
Google
Restaurant Finder
Facebook
the Weather Channel
Cookbook
CBS sports
Favorite stuff:
His children and his faith
 

From the time he was young, and he’d spend his summers pushing a broom or driving a truck, Adam Gilliatte wanted to join his father’s contracting business. But dad insisted that son get an education.

He did—both in civil engineering at Tri-State University (now called Trine) in Angola, and working for a Terre Haute developer. There, he learned the breadth and depth of the construction business, from operating earth-moving equipment to design. “Good, hands-on education,” he called it.

So when he went to work for his father 11 years ago and subsequently bought the Indianapolis family business, Gilliatte felt ready.

Today, you’ll see the now-25-year-old company’s name on projects such as CVS and Kroger stores, schools, student housing and Indiana Downs, a horse-racing track in Shelbyville. Gilliatte said 95 percent of his customers use his company’s services again.

“We’re not the biggest company,” he said, “but we’re a business that operates as a family. I want to be a very efficient, sound business that survives and I can hand down to my kids or employees.”

Gilliatte has three children, ages 4-9, and he’s proud of his company’s family atmosphere. He calls his business partner, Tom Ritman, who worked with his father for 20 years, “my best friend, mentor, colleague. He is the smartest, most compassionate, God-fearing man I have ever met.”

Gilliatte’s devotion to people extends to his outside interests. Like his father before him, Gilliatte is board president of St. Mary’s Child Center, which helps children who are victims of poverty, neglect, abuse and violence become successful and contributing citizens.

“Who’s going to correct that injustice?” Gilliatte said. “That’s something that’s very important to me.”•

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