Rodney Fite: An Electrical Fascination
By James Florence, Diamond Certified Resource Reporter
SAN FRANCISCO — Upon receiving an early introduction to the trades, Rodney Fite was struck with an electrical fascination. “My father was a carpenter, and he used to take me with him to jobsites when I was a kid,” he remembers. “I was exposed to a lot of different trades, but the one that interested me the most was electrical work. I spent as much time as I could hanging around the electricians to see what they were doing. I ended up studying electronics in college and getting a job at Eastman Kodak Company, where I worked for the next seven years. After a brief stretch of running my own printing company, I decided to get back into electrical work, and I’m still doing it today.”
Today, as president of REFCorp, Rodney says his favorite part of his job is devising customized solutions. “I enjoy the challenge of finding solutions that are both effective and fit the client’s budget. I love it when I’m able to deliver exactly what a customer needs at a price that works for them.”
A resident of San Francisco (where he lives with his wife, Joann), Rodney expresses his appreciation for life in the City by the Bay. “I enjoy the diversity of the city—you can stand on any given street corner and meet someone from another part of the world. There’s also a great variety of things to do, from visiting museums to kayaking in the Bay to taking walks through Golden Gate Park.”
Outside of work, Rodney spends his free time on a variety of active pastimes. “I have three favorite hobbies: flying, cycling and hiking,” he details. “Flying has been a passion of mine since I can remember—I got my pilot’s license when I was 18 and continue to fly regularly today. I also enjoy mountain and road biking, as well as hiking all around the Bay Area.” Additionally, Rodney likes to stay in touch with his daughter, Nicole, who is currently attending college.
In regard to his professional career, Rodney says relationships are more important than revenue. “At REFCorp, we don’t just fix electrical problems, we build relationships. I believe the success of any business depends on its ability to maintain relationships with its customers. Even if we lose money on a job here and there, as long as we’re keeping our customers happy, we’re going to do well over the long term.”
When asked the first thing he’d do if he were to retire tomorrow, Rodney says he’d hit the road. “I’d definitely travel. First, I’d get an RV and go traveling around the United States for a year or two. After that, I’d start hitting some international destinations. I’d like to see Turkey, Egypt and Iceland, just to name a few.”
Ask Me Anything!
Q: What’s your favorite sports team?
A: The San Francisco Giants.
Q: What’s your favorite snack?
Q: What’s the most death-defying feat you’ve ever attempted?
A: Rock climbing. It was a long time ago and I don’t remember where I was, but I remember constantly thinking I was going to die…which is kind of funny, considering how much I love flying.
Q: What’s your favorite thing to do on a rainy day?
A: Read a book.
Q: What kinds of books do you like to read?
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A: Biographies and suspense thrillers.