Wayne Perry’s journey over half a century is not just a story about the growth of a small business into a successful company with operations across the Southwest and Hawaii; it’s a story of wonderful customers, esteemed employees, and the resilience and determination personified by our company founder Wayne Perry.
Our Story: How It All Began
In a world increasingly focused on environmental sustainability, Wayne Perry, Inc. (WPI) has been a steadfast leader in environmental protection and resource management since our inception. Even before that time, our founder Wayne Perry boldly boarded Shell Oil’s storefronts to safeguard the stations, despite the turmoil taking place around him.
“Wayne started out framing canopies for Shell Oil’s dispensers and put himself on the front lines to protect the company’s stations during the 1968 Los Angeles riots. In 1974, his contacts at Shell convinced him to start his own business, and he began installing underground storage tanks for their stations. Soon he took on a broader range of maintenance and construction projects for them as time went by,“ recalls Thad Sandford, Wayne Perry’s VP and chief financial officer.
A Legacy of Pioneering Innovations
With California’s booming automobile culture, opportunities for growth were abundant, and WPI diversified. The expanding company developed groundbreaking technologies to address diverse environmental remediation challenges. In 1986, we introduced one of the first soil vapor recovery extraction systems; in 1988, we invented a surge tank pump and control system; and in 1992, we developed catalyzing agents that safely oxidize soil and groundwater contaminants. “These achievements were just the beginning of a long list of pioneering solutions that followed year after year,” Sandford says.
The company’s remediation work soon grew beyond the oil and gas industry. Company engineers designed a system to treat groundwater contamination at an LA County aquifer, which has been in use for several decades. The company also handled various environmental cleanup initiatives, including spills in Huntington Harbor, CA, and at the Las Vegas Hilton. “A good deal of our work involves environmental protection, including remediating spills to ensure clean soil, groundwater, and air,” Sandford notes.
A Family-Focused, Customer-Centric Culture
What distinguishes the company from other businesses is twofold: our approach to innovating solutions and an unwavering commitment to people, customers, and the community. Sandford highlights WPI’s unique position: “Our average employee’s tenure exceeds a decade—a testament to the trust, commitment, and reliability we foster. On the customer side, we immerse ourselves in our customers’ businesses, aiming to serve as an extension of their organizations. Our consistency as we grow speaks volumes about our operations and our people.”
Embracing a Sustainable Future
As WPI celebrates 55 years in business, the company remains focused on the future. Sandford remarks, “Given our strength in problem-solving, we respond to our customers’ evolving needs. The industry outlook is promising, with ongoing new construction and maintenance of traditional as well as cleaner fuels. In collaboration with our sister company FASTECH, which is also celebrating 25 years in business, we’re poised to lead the transition toward CNG and hydrogen fueling.”
As the company adapts to changing times, our executives take pride in the firm’s legacy of service to the industry. “As we celebrate our 55th year in business, we stand ready to embrace the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead and are deeply grateful to our customers and internal teams for the trust and confidence they’ve placed in us.”