After graduating with a degree in economics from Slippery Rock University in 1971, Frank Howard Jr. joined Geoff Milspaw in buying a 1966 Thomsen 640B and opening a concrete pumping business. They bought two new machines before parting amicably to head off in different directions. Milspaw took one pump, and Howard used the other to start up what we know today as Howard Concrete Pumping. Over the years, Howard amassed a track record of successful jobs, including the two highest buildings in Cleveland and the Harrison Power Plant in Shinnston, West Virginia, the largest mat pour of its day. Jobs ranged from steel mills to high rises and nuclear power plants. Howard also became a distributor for Schwing America.
Geography and ingenuity took concrete pumper Frank Howard in a new direction. Howard, recipient of ACPA's 2001 Pioneer Award, began a conventional concrete pumping service in Western Pennsylvania, but segued into geotechnical work when he saw the need for reclaiming the state's abandoned coal mines.
Pennsylvania has been one of the country's major coal producers for two centuries. In the early eighties, Howard bid his first backfilling job. With the success of that job, and succeeding projects, Howard went on to expand his fleet, and to buy monitoring equipment such as down-the-hole television cameras, air monitors, and drilling equipment.
Today, Howard Concrete Pumping runs over 50 boom pumps and employs 80 people. After more than 40 years in the business, Frank Howard says he's been fortunate to have had help from a lot of directions.
"I am proud of my own people," says Howard. "I have been truly blessed with having good, smart, loyal people working with me."