J. Mullen & Sons named 2022 Ulster County Business of the Year – Daily Freeman

KINGSTON, NY – Saugerties-based construction company Jay Mullen & Sons is the winner of the 2022 Ulster County Business of the Year Award.

It is among eight companies, business leaders and organizations that will be honored during the Ulster County Regional Chamber of Commerce’s Business Recognition Awards Celebration dinner at the Wiltwyck Golf Club, at 404 Steward Lane, Kingston, on Thursday, October 27, starting at 30 p.m

Other honors include Peekamoose Restaurant and Tap Room as Small Business of the Year; Charles Blaichman of CB Developers and Hotel Kinsley as Business Person of the Year; Railway Explorers as Tourism Company of the Year; Catholic Charities of Orange, Sullivan and Ulster Counties for Commitment to Community Award. Heritage Award goes to Scanlon’s Dry Cleaning; Ulster County Archivist Taylor Bruck was named Emerging Young Leader and The Len Cane Heart of Ulster County Award will be presented to Tom Struzzieri of HITS.

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“It’s very humbling and I feel very blessed,” owner John Mullen said.

Mullen recalled that when he started his business back in 1982, he started small things like chimneys, chopping wood and working on the side as a union mason when business was slow.

Now the business has grown to employ about 110 people, including between 20-30 union carpenters and laborers and five to six mechanics who keep their fleet of 140-150 trucks on the road, he said.

He said he has worked on construction projects with Vassar College, BOCES, The Culinary Institute of America and Marist College, where his company has done projects for the past 25 to 30 years, again starting small doing things like pavers and patch jobs and later take on large projects.

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Mullen said the company is partnering with Central Hudson on a five-year project to replace the company’s gas lines in communities across the Hudson Valley while doing an ever-growing amount of site work for the company’s electrical division. He added that the company is now doing similar replacement work with the National Grid utility as far west as Syracuse.

Still, 90% of the company’s employees live in Ulster County, and many stay with the company for 20 to 30 years, he said.

He said other projects include building Home Depot and Lowe’s stores in the region, and masonry restoration projects at historic homes, including Mills Mansion and Glasco Ponds in Saugerties.

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Mullen’s wife, Peggy Mullen, is a third-grade teacher at Riccardi Elementary School in Saugerties. The couple has six children. Two of Mullen’s sons Johhny Jr. and Shawn works at the company as a supervisor.

His grandson Jack Mullen, 14, is also learning trades under close supervision, he said.

Mullen said he’s not afraid to fail. “I failed so many times and failed to realize that I don’t want to make that mistake again,” he said. “You just have to keep going.”

A news release said: “The awards recognize Ulster County businesses that are leaders in their sectors, have achieved outstanding results or have demonstrated dedication and commitment to advancing business and the quality of life in Ulster County.”

For more information or tickets visit https://www.ulsterchamber.org/business-recognition-awards-dinner/.

J. Mullens & Sons trucks can be seen parked in Saugerties on September 29, 2022. The company is the 2022 recipient of the Ulster County Chamber of Commerce's Business of the Year award.  (Tania Barricklo/Daily Freeman)
J. Mullens & Sons trucks can be seen parked in Saugerties on September 29, 2022. The company is the 2022 recipient of the Ulster County Chamber of Commerce’s Business of the Year award. (Tania Barricklo/Daily Freeman)

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