Deschutes Plumbing, A Strong Partnership & Devoted Business Focus


Deschutes Plumbing has been a fixture in the Bend community for 16 years. Owners John and Laurie Woolery attribute their success and resilience throughout the recession to their strong partnership, excellent customer service and continued focus on commercial and residential remodels and service work.

The Wollerys took over the ownership of Deschutes Plumbing from Mark Mc Kinley in 2006 at the peak of the building boom. Mc Kinley was facing retirement and offered John the chance to own the business. John and Laurie decided to take the opportunity as partners with a specific scope.

While living in the Portland area, John had owned Oregon Plumbing for 13 years and worked primarily with new construction. He found the work to be unreliable in a feast or famine atmosphere, so decided the nature of Deschutes Plumbing’s business would be remodels and service.  This would provide a stable working environment and a more reliable cash flow.  When the new construction dried up in Bend in the last few years, this foundation proved to be Deschutes Plumbing’s staying power.

The couple had never worked together before buying Deschutes Plumbing, and experienced some tribulation during the first six months. Once the different styles of management and organization were ironed out, they settled into what has proved to be a very successful partnership.  Laurie’s focus is on the book work, scheduling, payroll and taxes. John handles the technical end, bidding out jobs and guiding his journeymen.  He brings over 30 years of plumbing experience to the job as a licensed journeyman and holds a plumbing inspector’s license.
Active paddlers, an important stipulation to moving to Central Oregon was living close to a river. When they found their spot on the Deschutes River 30 miles south of Bend, they decided this was the ideal place to live.

Laurie was the first one to get involved in paddling Dragon Boats when she was recruited onto a team by her brother in 1996 to train for Portland’s Rose Festival races. The team won first that year and Laurie was hooked. John joined in after that and the couple started competing and traveling up to VancouverBC to race.  In 2001 the Wollerys joined the US World Team and were presented with opportunities to travel to Italy and New Zealand to paddle and the International Dragon Boat Federation Championships on the US team in Philadelphia. Eventually both of their kids started paddling and the couple helped to establish and coach their son’s high school team.

Laurie and John have been married for 32 years and have found independence to be the greatest factor in making the partnership work at Deschutes Plumbing and in their marriage. In the challenge of owning a business together, it has become very important that each have the support to pursue their own activities and still be able to enjoy time as a couple.  The Wollerys are involved in two local chambers of commerce, the Bend High Desert Professionals, the Central Oregon Builders Association, Quota International of Central Oregon and Holy Trinity Catholic Church.

“Our company is large enough that we can be flexible in scheduling jobs, and are on the job when we say we are going to be there,” says John.
“Deschutes Plumbing prides itself on being one of the few plumbing contractors in the area set up to handle commercial and residential remodel and service work, as well as new construction. By being able to offer all these services we can address any plumbing problem. We take pride in our customer service. We strive to deliver prompt, accurate quality work with the utmost respect for you and your home or business. You can count on us to provide service to you with courtesy, attention and friendliness.”

The Wollerys add that they feel blessed to be living and working in Central Oregon; even during these difficult times. Deschutes Plumbing Co., Inc. plans to weather this economy and be here another 16 years.

Info: 541-385-6060, 61535 S. Highway 97 #9-233 Bend, OR 97702.


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Renee is the Art Director for Cascade Publications, and Editor for Cascade A&E Magazine.

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