October 29, 2022 at 12:18 p.m.

Editor’s note: The following is the transcript of an live interview with Dean Jagusch of Wagner Roofing. You can read the interview below or listen to the podcast.

Alice Reynolds:

Hello everyone. My name is Alice Reynolds, back again from Roofers Coffee Shop here with a Roofer of the Month interview. Thanks so much for listening.

We are so excited to be celebrating our October Roofer of the Month, Wagner Roofing. Thank you so much for being here for this interview, Dean.

Dean Jagusch:

Thanks Alice. Appreciate that.

Alice Reynolds:

Can you please introduce yourself and then tell us about your company?

Dean Jagusch:

Sure thing. So my name’s Dean Jagusch. And I am the owner and president of JS Wagner Company Incorporated, otherwise known as Wagner Roofing Company. I am the first non-family, non-Wagner family owner of the company. Our company was founded in 1914 here in Washington DC. And was three generations of the Wagner family before I bought the company in 2015. We are here, obviously, in the Mid-Atlantic. We’re based just outside of the nation’s capital and we specialize in a lot of historic work around Washington DC and the Maryland, Virginia area.

Alice Reynolds:

Cool. Nice. I love how it’s a family run company and you honor that even though you’re the next… Not member of the family, but carrying on the legacy. That’s so fun.

Dean Jagusch:

Yeah. No, appreciate that. I think family is a big part of who we are. And I think that’s a theme that you see a lot across this industry, right?

Alice Reynolds:

Right. Carrying on the story. Nice.

So what type of services does Wagner Roofing provide and what’s the specialty that you provide?

Dean Jagusch:

Okay so, obviously, we are a full service roofing company. As far as specialty is concerned, we tend to focus in the more historic nature of the roofing industry. We work for a lot of institutions, or churches, private schools, and we’re fortunate being based here in DC that we get to work with a lot of slate, and copper, and tile and the more unique type of roofing systems. We tend to work with a lot of historic restoration. And we tend to dabble into some of the other trades that tie pretty closely through the roofing as well, the carpentry, the masonry, and a little bit of the painting side of things as well.

Alice Reynolds:

Wow, very cool.

Can you share something special that your company celebrates?

Dean Jagusch:

I mean, obviously, we celebrate the work that we do and the pride that we take in the work. Our workers are very fortunate to… They see it as that they’re very fortunate to get to learn a trade and apply a trade. And our people are, obviously, the most important thing which, again, is probably pretty cliche. Any roofer worth his salt that’s going to say that his people aren’t important, probably doesn’t know what he’s doing.

So as far as our people are concerned, we take great pride in providing, obviously, an opportunity for our people to provide for their families. But we also take a real interest in their general wellbeing. And one of the things that we do is we support our employees when it comes to just sports events and the like. And what we’ve ramped up and really started doing over the last few years, actually the last three years, and I think Alice, you might have been involved in this, was what we call our Fit Body Fit Mind challenge.

And that really came about back in COVID we were involved with the sponsorship of an ultra cyclist, a pretty renowned Australian cycling journalist that we got involved with. And his big push was for mental health. And it seemed appropriate at the time as we were all going through different things with COVID. Certain family members maybe not working, or just us as a family group, or as a company group were not together. And we felt that connecting through a fitness challenge for Fit Body Fit Mind really would be a great way to bring our company together.

And it’s been really neat to sort of see what our team as a whole has really gotten into. We’ve had a number of guys that have… And I’m a proud cyclist, might say fanatic cyclist. But we’ve had a number of guys that have actually taken up cycling as a result of our challenge. We also have a soccer team that plays regularly on Friday evenings, and we even play against some of the other roofing companies in the area. So I think that’s one of the unique things that we do for and with our employees.

Alice Reynolds:

Right. Yeah, that’s definitely celebrating your employees to show them how much their mind staying well means to you.

And we participated this year, we as in Roofers Coffee Shop, because we thought it was such a cool thing and it was so fun to be able to be involved in that. And we also thought it was super important, it’s connecting mental health through something that everyone can kind of relate to. Just working out and staying active is a really good way to support your mental health. So yeah, that is such a cool part about Wagner.

Dean Jagusch:

Yeah, no, I appreciate that. And I mean, just on a personal level, it really helps me make good decisions. If I’m not physically active, well, my wife would say, you probably don’t want to be around me, but it also helps ground me and helps me make good decisions.

Alice Reynolds:

Absolutely, yeah.

So how do you and Wagner Roofing define superior customer service?

Dean Jagusch:

Yeah, so that’s an interesting question. I think as Wagner, and having the pedigree and the legacy that we have, Really comes down to… And particularly the customers that we tend to work with that don’t have cookie cutter buildings and theirs are gonna be older buildings that are all somewhat unique in the design. It comes down to trust. Trusting us to be able to come in to be able to give ’em a rundown of what the big picture is of what we’re looking at. And not always feeling as though we have to have the answer right off the bat, but them trusting us that we will find the answer, that we will be able to develop a solution for whatever challenges they may be having with their historic building, whether it be just the simple roof repair, or roof replacement. I feel as though our customers trust us to be able to give ’em good guidance and solid direction on how they should be best spending their dollars with the buildings they have.

Alice Reynolds:

Yeah. And beyond that, I mean maybe that the trust comes from once you already have a working relationship with a building owner, but why should a building owner choose Wagner Roofing to begin their roof project?

Dean Jagusch:

We’re not going anywhere. We’re gonna stand behind what it is that we do. And I think we’ve proven that. As one of the oldest companies in the District of Columbia, we’ve withstood the test of time and that is why people should trust us. And we don’t pretend that we know everything. But what we do want to know is more about our customers and what it is that they are looking for, and they can trust us to give them that guidance and help them with that direction on their next roof replacement, or roof repair, or just having an idea of their portfolio of buildings. And being able to give them a concise, solid rundown of what they’re working with.

Alice Reynolds:

Nice. Yeah.

All right well Dean, thank you so much for being a Roofers Coffee Shop Art Club member. And congrats on being our October Roofer of the Month.

Dean Jagusch:

Well, that’s awesome. I really appreciate you giving us time, Alice. And certainly all that you guys at Roofers Coffee Shop do. I mean, just a sidebar, I remember when Roofers Coffee Shop came about back in, gosh, I may be going out on a limb here, but I would say like ’03, is that about right?

Alice Reynolds:

Early 2000s, yeah.

Dean Jagusch:

Yeah. Here we are 20 years later.

Alice Reynolds:

Yeah.

Dean Jagusch:

Who’d known, right?

Alice Reynolds:

Yeah. [inaudible 00:10:30].

Dean Jagusch:

Congrats to you guys.

Alice Reynolds:

Yeah, thank you, yeah. And we’ve totally different than how we used to be. I mean, I don’t know actually how it used to be, but I’ve heard stories and that’s fun.

Dean Jagusch:

Yeah, no, that’s wild. So no, I appreciate you having us and giving us the opportunity to tell you a little bit about Wagner Roofing.





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