Brian Fitzmaurice: Embracing the Chaos
By James Florence, Diamond Certified Program Reporter
SAN BRUNO — As the son of a structural engineer, it’s no surprise that Brian Fitzmaurice got an early introduction to the construction field. “As a kid, I’d often tag along with my dad when he went to work,” he remembers. “As I got older, I spent my summers working alongside him, digging ditches and working backhoes. When I moved to California in 1981, I was lucky enough to get hooked up with a master carpenter, who taught me a lot during the years I worked for him. Eventually, I got my contractor’s license and struck out on my own.”
Today as owner of Brian Fitzmaurice General Contractor, Brian says he’s learned to embrace the chaos of his day-to-day work schedule. “At the moment, I have four different jobsites running, so I do a lot of bouncing around between them. Besides overseeing things and checking in with employees and clients, I like when I get a chance to do hands-on work, especially tasks that require finer detail like tile setting and finish carpentry.”
Originally from the Boston area, Brian recounts the roundabout course that landed him on the opposite coast. “After college, I decided to go to Europe, where I lived for almost a year before I ran out of money and realized it was time to come home. On a whim, I decided to fly to San Francisco and visit my sister. The weather here was so nice compared to the East Coast that I just ended up staying.”
Outside of work, Brian’s interests run the gamut from international travel to catching up on sleep. “I’ve been extraordinarily busy lately, so I’d say my current favorite hobby is sleeping,” he laughs. “However, I really like to travel. I’ve been to Japan about 30 times. That’s actually where I met my wife, Misa, so now we go there together and visit her family. Also, my son, Jason, has been in Eastern Europe for some time, so I visit him occasionally.” Brian also enjoys playing the stock market. “One of my main interests is investing. Before and after work, I’m usually on my computer trading accounts online.”
In regard to his professional career, Brian says it’s crucial to keep customer satisfaction in focus. “My clients are my bread and butter, so I try to take care of them, do good work and treat them the way I’d like to be treated. I’ve received a lot of good feedback from clients about how I keep them updated on their projects, which is something I guess a lot of contractors don’t bother to do. I just figure, if it was me, I’d want to know what was going on with my project, so I try to do that for others.”
When asked what his future retirement might look like, Brian says he’ll invest more of his time (and money) toward his favorite pastime. “I doubt if I’ll ever really retire, but if for some reason I couldn’t be out banging nails or running crews, I’d probably shift over to stock market investing. Back in 1996, when business was slow, I got licensed to be a registered stockbroker, which is something I’ve always wanted to do. I can see myself spending more time doing that in retirement.”
Ask Me Anything!
Q: Music or talk radio?
A: Talk radio while driving around during the day, music when I’m in the office or at home.
Q: What kind of movies do you like?
A: I like everything from old Clint Eastwood movies to historical documentaries.
Q: What’s your favorite local restaurant?
A: O’ Sole Mio in Millbrae.
Q: How do you like your eggs?
Q: If you could time travel, would you go to the past or the future?
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A: Probably the past, just to get a firsthand view of major historical events.