Reader Profile: Gil Carrillo

Dec. 12, 2013

In his younger days, Gil Carrillo spent a lot of time out in the field-the football field, that is. He played for the Canadian Football League and the Regional Football League. These days, Carrillo continues to show up on the field, but now it’s to provide environmental site services to help clients-mostly developers-in the region of Simi Valley, CA, to comply with regulations. Carrillo is the president of Environmental Site Maintenance (ESM), which provides sediment and erosion control services, including weekly maintenance, site inspections, vacuum street sweeping, hydroseeding, slope protection, dust control, BMP installations, and stormwater sampling.

Carrillo is a hands-on company president, running the day-to-day operations, estimating, conducting weekly site visits to meet with all superintendents and confirm compliance at their sites, as well as checking to see that his employees are representing his company in a way that reflects his business values. Carrillo says his end goal is to offer the best possible service to his customers-often, site preparation services lead to landscape management, which he recently added to offer back-to-back solutions. He engages in the balancing act of candidly discussing with clients what they need and ensuring they are in compliance with state and federal laws while keeping it cost effective. Carrillo’s mission is to “respond in a very quick manner to the needs of all of our clients.”

What He Does Day to Day
Carrillo’s first order of business after arriving at the office in the morning is to review the previous day’s paperwork and complete the necessary billing. He’ll attend any scheduled meetings and then hit the field to meet with superintendents for site assessments. After he’s completed all of the site visits for the day, it’s back to the office to address any new scheduling with the company’s scheduler. Carrillo then dashes out the door and onto a sports field to coach high school football or track practice, depending on the season.

What Led Him Into This Line of Work
After hanging up his cleats following his football years, Carrillo eventually took on a job working for a company that provided environmental pressure washing and sweeping, then ventured into erosion and sediment control services. He started in 2000, getting training and bringing the company up to speed with the rest of the industry. In March 2010, he and his wife bought the business, which primarily serves the residential construction market.

What He Likes Most About His Job
“I like the fact that no two days are the same,” Carrillo says. “The sites are always changing and we have to stay on our toes. With the new laws, no one is able to skate by like they have in the past, so I am able to keep people up to speed throughout the duration of working on a site.” Superintendents are always looking for new ideas and new ways to set them and their sites apart from other sites, says Carrillo, adding that he meets with them weekly as the site undergoes its stages and changes to direct those efforts.

His Greatest Challenge
Carrillo’s biggest challenge is one shared industrywide: “These sites are dynamic and are always changing,” he notes. “It is extremely hard for the superintendents to keep their sites in perfect condition when there are potentially up to 100 subcontractors coming and going on a daily basis. BMPs are constantly getting damaged or run over by delivery trucks or even taken down by homeowners who have just moved in to a new house.” Those who don’t have the training or understanding don’t comprehend that the rock bag in the street or a “special-looking” green bag is actually there for a reason, just like a window or door, he points out. “They take these BMPs and use them to hold down their basketball hoop, or for whatever reason, and don’t realize those are there to prevent runoff and keep our oceans safe and clean,” he says. Carrillo says he appreciates that many builders are now providing education classes for all of their subcontractors as well as distributing information sheets to new homeowners as they move in to further educate them.

About the Author

Carol Brzozowski

Carol Brzozowski specializes in topics related to resource management and technology.