Since 1977, Monona Plumbing and Fire Protection has been Dane County's trusted contractor for homeowners and businesses alike. Originally founded by Phil McManamy, John Baker, and Harold Homburg, Monona Plumbing and Fire Protection has continued to grow over the last four decades into one of the largest pluming contractors in the area.
Monona Plumbing and Fire Protection has built a tradition of excellence in providing its customers with dedicated, personalized service from the beginning to end of the building process. From humble beginnings as "Monona Plumbing, Inc.", we have transformed over the years and offer complete project solutions including plumbing, site work, earthwork, fire protection, mechanical, design/build, and 24/7 commercial and residential service. Our primary focus has always been and continues to be on nurturing personal relationships and collaboration throughout the project. We take great pride in our partnerships and look forward to the opportunity to introduce new customers to the unique experience that is the Monona way of doing business.
1970s & 1980s
Monona Plumbing, Inc. was founded in 1977 by business partners Phil McManamy, John Baker, and Harold Homberg. As the name suggests, the company originally focused solely on plumbing work. By 1982, Monona Plumbing, Inc. purchased our first excavator in order to perform site utilities work and expand our offerings.
We went on to build our first building at 3126 Watford Way in 1986 and by 1987 had formally changed our name to Monona Plumbing and Fire Protection, Inc. We became the first locally based company to offer fire protection services to the area and went on to purchase a robotic welder to support the fire protection prefabrication needs of the business in 1988.
By 1990, Monona Plumbing and Fire Protection had reached the milestone of 50 employees. The growth of the company allowed for the expansion from one site utility crew to three site utility crews, with additional equipment and vehicles purchased to keep up with the rising demand.
The following year began what would be an 11 year project on the Wisconsin State Capitol. We bought our first piece of sewer camera technology during this time when the Capitol hired us to locate and map out all of their storm and sanitary systems underground. This process led to the discovery of a deteriorating storm line unground. Due to the extensive tree coverage in the area, we had to innovate and pipe burst a new HDEP pipeline in its place from the Capitol Square through to the existing structure on the other side without disturbing any of the century old tree root systems or other vegetation in the capitol lawn. This was a huge achievement for Monona Plumbing and Fire Protection, as well as for the preservation of our State Capitol’s property.
Our work on the State Capitol ultimately earned Monona Plumbing and Fire Protection the Governor's Award for Excellence in Construction from the State of Wisconsin in 1997. During that project, our workforce doubled to 100 employees and work continued to expand around the state.
The early 2000s marked Monona Plumbing and Fire Protection's continued work on noteworthy projects throughout the greater Dane County area. We were proud to be partners on Madison landmarks including Arbor Gate, a six-story commercial building that is a Madison staple seen from the beltline, and General Casualty Insurance, the biggest Site Utility contract in company history. We received AGC Build Wisconsin Awards for other prominent projects in this time such as Greenway Station, the Dane County Courthouse, and Stafford Rosenbaum LLP.
These years also marked our entrance into the mechanical piping and municipal services market. This allowed Monona Plumbing and Fire Protection to expand into specialization in water/wastewater treatment, booster stations, pumping and sewage, lift stations and well houses. The continued growth led to the purchase of our second office building adjacent to the first at 3118 Watford Way.
In 2005 Monona Plumbing and Fire Protection began work on the Epic Campus in Verona, WI that still continues to this day. That same year we went on to become a pioneer in our market, by adding value with BIM to our services.
The following year Brent Williams became President of Monona Plumbing and Fire Protection. This allowed for Phil McManamy, CEO, to begin to share leadership responsibilities and for the vision for Monona Plumbing and Fire Protection’s future to expand.
In 2012, Monona Plumbing and Fire Protection completed the addition of our 9,700 sq. ft. fabrication shop. This dedicated facility has helped us make prefabrication an integral part of our building process for both plumbing and fire protection systems.
2014 and 2015 saw continued growth and Monona Plumbing and Fire Protection completed the construction of the third building on the Watford Way properties as well as additions and remodeling work to the existing offices, shop, and yard facilities.
In these years Monona Plumbing and Fire Protection was honored with two AGC Build Wisconsin Awards - recognizing our innovation and excellence on the University of Wisconsin Residence Dorm – Leopold Hall and the Camp Randall Student Athletic Performance Center projects. We also were awarded The Daily Reporter's Top Project award for our work on Epic System's Farm Campus.
The addition of our Earthwork division allowed for Monona Plumbing and Fire Protection to be able to offer our customers a one-stop-shop for handling four main divisions of new construction work - Plumbing, Fire Protection, Site Utilities, and Earthwork. Our Sitework team continued to expand with the purchase of a Hyrdovac Trailer, another piece of equipment that allowed us to offer even more services to our customers.
Some of the awards we are most proud of are the AGC Wisconsin Construction Safety & Excellence awards. Monona has proudly received these awards in 2010, 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016. We’ve always believed that our people are our most important asset. We invest heavily in our safety programs and are proud of our team for always putting safety first.
In 2017, just a few months after the 40th Anniversary of the company, Phil McManamy officially retired. His leadership over the past four decades was invaluable and he will be deeply missed. He’s left a long legacy of success that we are eager to continue.
Looking ahead, Monona Plumbing and Fire Protection is more excited for the future than ever before. With a team of the right people, robust resources, and plentiful opportunities, we can confidently say we are looking forward to the celebrating the next 40 years and everything they have in store!