"I am not one to turn away from any challenge," says John Willsie, owner of Lind Lumber in Dorchester, a small town in Southern Ontario. In both his personal and business life, John has proven himself to be a man of his word. Facing the challenge of being an independent retailer in a big-box market would be enough, but he continues to thrive and prosper in a unique niche of the construction industry as well.
John serves the farming community by building turnkey barns that are not only erected to specification, but are filled with the necessary equipment and services for their intended operations. Few can match his product or success. He attributes part of his success to confidence in his buying power. "We buy as well as any big box. Steel cladding is important to my construction business, and Castle lets me be competitive with anyone else in Canada."
Lind Lumber cares about their customers, their employees and their community.
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Early 1900s - The company began as a sawmill.
1954 - Jim Lind and one employee would saw logs for lumber during the day and deliver the material at night.
1965 - Andy Willsie joined Jim Lind as a partner, following a career as a dairy farmer in the area. This came about because a tragic fire had destroyed the Willsie dairy operation.
1973 - Andy's son, John Willsie (current president), joined the company and began by heading up the construction end of the business (known as Wilcon Building Systems).
1993 - In February of 1993, current owners John and Jean Willsie purchased the business and separated the supply and install division from the building supply outlet a short time later.
As the years progressed, the Willsie family members became more involved, and today John and Jean's three sons - Jeff, Dave & Chris - are active in the day-to-day operation of Lind Lumber. Jeff manages the construction side of the business, Dave is responsible for the estimating and quoting, and Chris is the manager of the building supply outlet. Jean manages the office while John oversees the entire operation.
2004 - Lind Lumber celebrates 50 years since its founder, Jim Lind, incorporated the business as a retail building supply yard. Jim was one of the original seven business owners that formed the "Bold" lumber buying group and served as its inaugural secretary. Bold was the predecessor to the current Castle Building Centres Buying Group.
2010 - Jeff, Dave and Chris Willsie now own Lind Lumber and Wilcon Building Systems. Jeff still operates Wilcon while Dave does the estimating and quoting, Chris runs the building supply store and lumber yard, and Chris' wife Bonnie manages the offices. John Willsie still provides consultation services for the construction company.
Today - Lind Lumber has renovated the store, doubling the actual store size, carrying more inventory than ever before. If you don't see what you are looking for, they can get it in for you. The ability to be part of the community and to provide such great personal service to their customers plays an important part in the success of the independent lumberyard and building material supplier.
Since 1963, builders, contractors and consumers have been relying on Castle Building Centres Group as their lumber and building supply partner. Whether you're looking for lumber, building materials, hardware or advice, hundreds of Castle dealers across Canada are trusted to deliver quality products and value.
Castle dealers own their own stores - we are true independents. We buy well through Canada's fastest growing buying group, and that makes us competitive. We have more freedom than any other buying group in Canada, which allows us to run our business our way. We know the communities we live in, we understand the needs of our customers. That's why Castle members are growing and succeeding - in hundreds of towns and cities right across Canada.