As Groucho Marx once said, “Outside of a dog, a book is a man’s best friend. Inside of a dog, it’s too dark to read.” Dogs have brought joy and love into humans’ lives for centuries, serving as loyal companions, hard workers, and best friends. While millions of people, including over half of U.S. households, experience the rewards of pet ownership, some, like Aaron Wesley Smith of Orange County, CA, have an extra special bond with and appreciation for their four-legged friends.
Aaron Wesley Smith, president of Retrolock Construction and former president of AMI Hospitality, an interior finish company in Las Vegas, is known as much for his construction and business acumen as his dedication to animal welfare. In addition to being a lifetime dog owner, as a businessman, he was always ahead of his time in the dog-friendly office movement.
“His offices were dog-friendly before it was cool,” said a spokesperson.
Now an acclaimed executive renowned in construction circles around the Southwest, Aaron Wesley Smith grew up as a farm kid and spent many a day working with animals. In addition to his dog-friendly workspaces, he’s carried his respect and love of animals into his adult life in the form of numerous dog rescue and animal welfare charities, including work with the Nevada Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA). He and his wife Tania have also committed to saving rescue dogs via fostering, adoption, or donating toward necessary care whenever possible.
“Dogs don’t have a voice and we need advocates to care for them and protect them,” Aaron Wesley Smith said. “The amazing nurturing warmth and bond of a rescue dog is like no other.”
According to the Humane Society, approximately 7.6 million companion animals enter animal shelters nationwide every year. Of those, approximately 3.9 million are dogs. While Aaron Smith and fellow advocates dream of a day when all animals are safe, cared for, and loved, in the meantime, he and his family look forward to helping as many animals in need as possible in the Southern California community.
In addition to animal welfare charities, Aaron Wesley Smith and Retrolock regularly contribute to other community charities including the Posse Foundation and Giving Circle. The Posse Foundation helps high school students with demonstrated exceptional leadership potential who may have been overlooked in the traditional college selection process by awarding them leadership training opportunities and college scholarships. The Giving Circle helps families in need via the Suffolk Society.
Retrolock executives joined with business associates from Shawmut Design and Construction and a throng of other Los Angeles-area movers and shakers when they participated in the Seventh Annual Avison Young/Posse Foundation Golf Tournament, held at Calabasas Country Club near Los Angeles on Sept. 16.
A leader in construction and interior finishes, Retrolock (RLC) gives back to the community by contributing to numerous charitable and philanthropic concerns in Southern California, but the Posse Foundation is special, said RLC CEO Tania Tomyn.
One of RLC’s partners, Shawmut Design and Construction, has long been involved with the Posse Foundation, Tomyn said. Once Tomyn’s friends at Shawmut told her about the Posse Foundation’s mission – placing multicultural teams of overlooked, high-achieving public high school students (a “posse”) into colleges on full scholarships – the family-oriented Tomyn became a big supporter, along with her spouse, Aaron Smith.
“Shawmut Design and Construction has long been heavily involved with the Posse Foundation,” Tania Tomyn said. “After we learned about the Posse Foundation, I got on board right away. It’s such a great cause.”
Sponsors of the Sept. 16 event to benefit the Posse Foundation enjoyed a round of golf on the historic Calabasas golf course, where every hole is named after an old Hollywood movie filmed on the nearby former Warner ranch, followed by a social gathering and satisfying dinner.
“This year RLC was one of the hole sponsors at Calabasas,” Tania Tomyn said. “We have been here before and it’s great to connect and reconnect with like-minded people.”
About Retrolock (RLC)
Based in Orange, California, and with offices in Concord, California, and Las Vegas, Nevada.
Retrolock is a leader in interior finish scopes and continues to take on high-profile projects in California. The interior scopes include doors, frames, hardware, finish carpentry, millwork and access control. Retrolock is growing and attracting and hiring top industry performers to support its dynamic growth.
For more information visit: retrolock.com.
About the Posse Foundation
Founded in 1989, the Posse Foundation is an organization that identifies public high school students with extraordinary academic and leadership potential who may be overlooked by traditional college selection processes.
The Posse Foundation extends to these students the opportunity to pursue personal and academic excellence by placing them in supportive multicultural teams – Posses – of 10 students.
Today, 30 years since it embarked on its mission, the Posse Foundation has partnered with more than 50 colleges and universities – including elite institutions such as Vanderbilt University (the foundation’s original partner) the University of Virginia, the University of Chicago and top-tier liberal arts schools such as Denison University in Ohio and Davidson College in North Carolina.
Posse Foundation scholars are awarded four-year, full-tuition leadership scholarships. For more information, visit possefoundation.org.
About Shawmut Design and Construction
Shawmut Design and Construction is a national construction and engineering services firm, based in Boston, with offices in eight other major cities, including Los Angeles, where it was named the Best Place to Work in its category by Los Angeles Business Journal last month.
For more information about Shawmut Design and Construction in Los Angeles, click here.
Former President of AMI Hospitality, Aaron Smith, welcomed furry friends in the office long before the trend of dog-friendly workspaces was popular. He believes employees at his interior finish company will be encouraged to adopt more animals who are in dire need of a loving home. Having the flexibility and freedom to care for pets while at work is both a fun and life-saving perk.
Studies have shown that having pets in the workplace is also of great benefit to the health of employees. It makes people happier, lowers stress levels, and improves productivity. Better communication in the office is also a great perk, as pets promote new interactions that may have otherwise never happened. Aaron Wesley Smith believes that dog-friendly workspaces keep spirits high while providing a good work-life balance.
For the past two decades, Aaron Smith has rescued dogs while supporting the SPCA. According to www.aspca.org, approximately 1.5 million pets are euthanized every year in the United States. Without the donations of animal activists like Aaron Smith, shelters would be unable to provide services the community relies on. The workplace pet policy also supports shelters by helping them place animals into homes.
Unfortunately, it is common to see good pets abandoned. Many rentals do not accept pets, putting people in tough situations when it comes time to move. Other families find themselves overwhelmed with responsibility after having children and cannot properly care for the animals. Aaron Smith and his wife Tania have committed to saving as many dogs as possible by supporting foster care programs and supporting and funding much needed medical care to pets in poor health.
Together, they continue to save countless animals from death and often choose the dogs that are least likely to get adopted. When Flash arrived at the SPCA, he had many health issues and only one eye after suffering from beatings and abuse. At 12 years old, Flash had extreme anxiety and could not be left alone for long. Aaron Smith and his wife Tania saved Flash, welcoming him into their home to receive unconditional love. It is common for good pets just like Flash to be put down because they need special care. Aaron Smith tries to combat this unfortunate circumstance through his furry friend policy at every company he is involved with.
Now located in Orange County California, Aaron Smith continues to be an advocate for rescue dogs and the organizations that support them. The bond and warmth of a rescue dog is like no other, which is why Aaron and his Tania Tomyn will continue to adopt and care for neglected animals in the Southern California area.
High-profile clients turn to Aaron Smith, interior finish expert for complex design-build jobs.
The construction industry is comprised of many various components that must come together in order to produce a beautiful and on the budget interior in high rise projects today. One of the most important components (doors, frames, hardware, millwork, finish carpentry, low voltage), yet often the least thought about, is the interior finish solution via design-build. One company’s President, Aaron Smith of Retrolock of Orange, CA., is “changing the standard”. Traditionally these projects wait until there is just a short amount of time to price. Usually, this creates cost over-runs and to hit the budget in most cases value engineering is required. This comes with a cost to the developer and potentially lost potential property revenues to the developer when finishes are cut.
Aaron Smith has been working as an executive for the past 25 years, with the main focus on high-rise, Casinos, and Entertainment venue buildings. His projects can be found in major cities around the United States including, Las Vegas, Atlantic City, Boston, Miami, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Austin, and many others. If you have recently traveled to these cities for entertainment or business, there’s a good chance you’ve seen his craftsmanship in the form of a casino, skyscraper, or large venue. Although people around the country continue to request his services, Aaron Smith has focused his multi-housing high rise operations in Los Angeles and San Francisco. Retrolock is a company out of Orange, California. Retrolock is trying to change the standard by working with the developer, and general contractor and architect very early in the project. The traditional method is bringing in your MEP contractors for design-assist. Retrolock is pushing to add interiors to that design-assist 4th group. While interiors are a smaller % of the total project value it gets less attention early on than Mechanical, Electrical, Plumbing (MEP). However, the interior is the last thing you see. Tenants of the building have a choice and want elegant interiors and common areas. Retrolock works within the design intent and builds the project within budgets. The building owner, General Contractor and Architect all win.
Like most things these days, construction costs are on the rise meaning general contractors and developers are expecting more than ever before. After recognizing this new demand, Aaron Smith of Retrolock stepped outside of the box to bring the highest level of value possible to his clients. His unique approach in the construction industry has begun changing the standard, as Aaron Smith exceeds expectations through one mega-project at a time.
Clients appreciate his fresh approach to each new project, and desire to perform at the top of the industry.
Aaron Smith continues to impact the community through his passion for animal welfare.
Making the decision to adopt a pet is a big responsibility, but one businessman in California is making it easier than ever for his employees to save a furry life. Former President of AMI Hospitality, Aaron Wesley Smith, has long implemented policies at his finish and hardware company allowing employees to bring their dogs into the office. By providing employees with pet perks, Aaron Smith is advocating for the adoption of more shelter animals in need of a reliable family.
For more than a decade, Aaron Wesley Smith of Michigan has supported the SPCA, a non-profit organization that has shelters around the world for pets in need of homes. His passion for helping animals has also made a big impact in his community and in the lives of those who count on shelter services. According to www.aspca.org, around 1.5 million pets are euthanized every single year in the United States alone. Without the support of donors like Aaron Wesley Smith, shelters would not be able to cover operating costs that are required in the pet rehoming process.
Animals are often abandoned when families welcome new children into the household, make a big move, or face financial challenges. Aaron Wesley Smith and his wife, Tania, strongly believe in advocating for these homeless pets and giving them a voice. Animals deserve love, attention, and proper care for a lifetime, not just for a season. That’s why together, Aaron Wesley Smith and Tania made the commitment to save as many furry friends as possible by rescuing dogs themselves and providing proper medical care to some of the worst cases.
Without Aaron Wesley Smith of Michigan, dogs like Wylie would not have been given a second chance. Wylie was severely abused for many years and used in illegal gambling rings. Until recently when Wylie passed, he still trembles at the sound of a whistle. Abuse made him unsociable and scared, but with proper rehabilitation, Wylie was Aaron Wesley Smith’s loving pet for more than 6 years. Animals with special cases such as this one often need specific care, and many cannot be left at home alone for extended periods of time. Aaron Wesley Smith is providing opportunity and hope for more animals like this to be adopted through his pet friendly work policies.
Located in Orange County California, Aaron Wesley Smith and his wife, Tania, continue to advocate for non-profit animal shelters. After seeing the unconditional love given by rescue dogs, Aaron Wesley Smith encourages others to open their hearts and their homes not only in the Southern California area, but around the world.
Interior finish expert, Aaron Smith, leads successful megaprojects.
When you think of door frames and interior finishes, glamorous is probably not the first word that comes to your mind. These small details, however, are such an important element in the construction process. Installing doors, frames, hardware, and millwork means crossing over into many other trades like drywall and low voltage wiring. Choosing the wrong company could lead to an endless amount of issues and problems, especially for large, high-profile projects.
For the last 25 years, Aaron Smith has been working as an Executive on high-rise buildings across major United States cities such as Boston, Miami, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Austin Texas, and many others. There’s a good chance you’ve recently seen one of the mega projects completed by Aaron Smith’s company in the form of a casino, skyscraper, or entertainment venue. Despite his company’s impressive turnkey services being requested from around the country, Aaron Smith, formerly of Henderson Nevada, has focused multi-housing and high-rise operations out Los Angeles and San Francisco.
As construction costs continue to rise, general contractors and developers are demanding more from the subcontractors they choose to work with. Aaron Smith dares to think outside of the box to bring his customers the highest value possible. This unique business model continues to push the envelope as Aaron Smith slowly changes the standard, one large project at a time.
He firmly believes that a company is only as good as their last job. Therefore, a track record of dependability and accountability is what Aaron Smith, an expert on interior finish scopes for doors, frames, hardware, and more, has shown. From product design to installation, Aaron Smith knows the importance of excellent customer service, making the process as simple and straightforward as possible and being accountable.
An incredible business cannot be built on one man alone, however. Aaron Smith has a large team of people that make sure all construction projects are running on time and according to schedule. This is essential for large scale projects that have tough schedules. From Fontainebleau Miami, which boasts over 1,500 rooms, to Fontainebleau Las Vegas, which has 4,000 rooms, Aaron Smith and his team continue to deliver excellent results time and time again.
His hard work and passion for business does not end there. The MGM City Center completed a mega project costing more than $10 billion dollars, where Aaron Smith, now based out of Orange County California, made a major contribution through the involvement of his interior finish solutions company. He will continue to be recognized in future successful mega projects.
Countless lives are being saved in California thanks to Aaron Wesley Smith and his passion for animal welfare.
Long before the trend of dog friendly workspaces came about, former President of AMI Hospitality, Aaron Wesley Smith, welcomed furry friends in the office. He has rescued dogs and been an avid supporter of the Nevada SPCA for more than a decade. By giving the employees of his interior finish company more flexibility and freedom with the care of their pets, he is avidly encouraging the adoption of more animals who need stable families to rescue them.
Aaron Wesley Smith genuinely cares about the loving pets who are abandoned every single day and strives to make an impact in his community. According to www.aspca.org, approximately 1.5 million pets are euthanized every year in the United States. These animals cannot find new homes without shelters and rescue organizations that rely on funding and donations from people just like Aaron Smith.
He believes in standing up to be the voice for the animals who are unable to speak for themselves. Not only are animals abandoned when people move or have children, they are also commonly abandoned when owners realize they do not know how to properly care for animals. When adopting a pet, it should be a lifelong commitment that includes adequate effort, attention, and care. Aaron Wesley Smith and his wife have made a commitment to save as many dogs as possible by rescuing animals and providing much needed medical care.
Together, they have saved countless animals from certain death, like Flash, a 12-year-old rescue dog that was severely beaten by his previous owners. Flash arrived to the SPCA with one eye and countless other medical issues. Due to his abuse, Flash suffers from extreme anxiety and can never be left alone for long. Aaron Smith has accepted Flash into his home for the past ten years, where he has received unconditional love and the opportunity to be a wonderful pet. Pets who cannot be left alone will oftentimes be put down due to owners not being able to care for them while at work, something Aaron Smith tries to combat with his furry friend policy at any company he is involved in. . Pets help calm the work environment and remove a level of stress from employees.
Now located in Orange County California, Aaron Wesley Smith continues to be an advocate for rescue dogs and the organizations that support them. He encourages others to open their hearts and their homes, to welcome amazing animals that need to be given a chance to thrive. The bond and warmth of a rescue dog is like no other. Aaron Smith and his wife will continue to adopt and care for neglected animals in the Southern California area.