Women in Business: Kristen Brown
Brown Builders, Inc.
Kristen Brown knows that whether you are building a business or a construction project, the same principles apply. Take care of your customers. Take care of your team members. Do your best work. Do what you say you are going to do.
Since 1971, Brown Builders has been building relationships in many of the places Shreveport-Bossier City residents live, work and play. Its founder, Wayne Brown, was the first in this area to recognize that if the building owner, end user, architect and contractor work together from the start, the construction process is much more efficient in both time and cost and the end result is a building that more precisely meets a need.
“I grew up in the construction business. My grandfather [longtime Bossier City homebuilder James M. Brown] and Uncle Doug built each house as if they were building it for their own family,” Brown said. “My dad carried that standard of care and attention to detail into commercial and industrial construction. He taught me to constantly be innovating and building on that experience.”
Starting in high school, Brown worked in every area of the business from job sites to accounting, project management and estimating. She enhanced her business and management knowledge and experience at Washington and Lee University and LSU Law School. After practicing business and construction law in the area for a few years, Brown was ready to shift her focus back to Brown Builders and the industry that was in her blood.
With her dad as her mentor and most trusted advisor, Brown has served as president of Brown Builders since 2013. Under her leadership, the company has flourished. “It’s said that I’m moving Brown Builders in a ‘new direction’, but that’s not really the case,” Brown said. “ Sure, we have become much more connected using technology to streamline processes in the office and field. This has allowed us to successfully expand throughout Louisiana and into several other states. But the ‘new direction’ is actually just recognizing and focusing on what my dad and grandpa taught me about honesty, hard work, attention to quality and taking care of people who trust you.”
Though it has built local landmarks such as Willis Knighton Bossier, Benteler Steel, Parkway High School and Glen Retirement Center, the Brown Builders team uses its broad experience to allow it to tackle the more challenging projects. “We have the most experienced and talented construction minds associated with our company. We take on challenging work and make every project more cost and time efficient as well as higher quality and better suited for the building purpose,” Brown said.
Brown is proud to be a woman in business and enjoys helping other women find their potential. Many of the leaders and managers in Brown Builders are women, but Brown doesn’t see gender as a deciding factor. “I just want the most talented and qualified people in the right places in the business whether they are men or women,” she said.