Robert A. Alonso II (Tony) served in the United States Air Force from January of 85 till April of 98. After he separated from the United States Airforce, he relocated back home to West Virginia. He began working with his father, Bob, his brother, Todd, and his sister, Tish, in the construction business as a Project Manager and Estimator. Alonso received his service-connected disability from the Veteran’s Administration in 2009.
In September of 2010, Alonso, and his brother and sister formed The Alonso Group, a general construction company that wanted to work closely with Veteran Affairs Medical Centers in West Virginia. With Alonso having a strong connection with his fellow veterans, he thought this would be a way to give back to his fellow brothers and sisters in uniform. Having a strong family history and experience in the construction industry, and being aware of multiple opportunities for general contractors, Alonso thought this would be a win/win for his company.
In April of 2011, The Alonso Group obtained its Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business Verification from the Center for Verification and Evaluation. In February of 2015, The Alonso Group became certified as a Small Business Administration (8a) Minority-Owned Small Business. In March of 2020, The Alonso Group was selected as the U.S. Small Business Administration’s 2020 West Virginia Veteran-Owned Small Business of the Year.
Alonso talked with Jim Matuga, host of The Positively West Virginia Podcast, about his family-owned business, his best business moment and advice to young entrepreneurs.
What is your 30-second pitch for The Alonso Group?
“We do construction projects well, on time and within budget. We are used to working with federal contracts throughout the state of West Virginia, and we take pride in what we do. We have sixty years of experience between the three partners here within the office, and we have an impressive resume of clients that we are working with or have worked with,” said Alonso.
How did you get started in the construction business?
“When I got out of the service, my dad said he could use someone in the office to project manage and estimate for his newer business. I had no experience doing that. My brother and other co-workers took me under their wing, showing me how to do what they did. I took online classes and did a lot of research,” said Alonso.
What has been your best business moment so far?
“In October 2012, we were awarded a project at the Clarksburg Veterans Affairs for just under five million dollars. It was two wings on the Veterans Affairs’ fourth floor, and the project’s scope was sixteen thousand square feet. We were renovating and building outpatient mental services for our veterans. For me, that was huge because it was rewarding to treat service members with post-traumatic stress disorders and several other things,” said Alonso.
What is your long term vision for The Alonso Group?
“We would like to start doing bidding projects in bordering states, predominantly Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Maryland. In West Virginia, there are good opportunities, but we are limiting ourselves to possibly some other work in neighboring states,” explained Alonso.
How do you attract new customers?
“Right now, it has been difficult with COVID-19. I have not done a lot of that, but that is my business plan this year. I also would like to get a website up and running with some of our prior projects, experience that is brought to the table, and some of our principles,” said Alonso.
Alonso was a guest on the Positively West Virginia podcast. Listen to the full podcast here.
PWV QUICK BITS | THE ALONSO GROUP
- PIECE OF ADVICE: “You have to have a great accountant and a great lending institution,” advised Alonso.
- RECOMMENDED RESOURCE: https://beta.sam.gov
- RECOMMENDED BOOK: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey.
This article was written by the InnerAction Media staff.