Dewhurst & Associates has deep roots in area

Over the past 79 years, Dewhurst & Associates has earned a prominent position in the annals of La Jolla construction history.

You can take that literally with one of their projects - the Mount Soledad cross.

From new high-end custom homes and remodels to large-scale developments and design, the fourth-generation family-run operation has planted an indelible footprint on the landscape that is The Jewel.

Patriarch Don Dewhurst said his grandfather Ernest Dewhurst, a builder in London, immigrated to the United States and worked in the movie business, building sets in Hollywood.

Just before the Depression, Ernest made his way to San Diego and, after constructing his first home in La Jolla, decided that this was where he wanted to settle, Don said.

Still standing

In 1929, Ernest set up shop just a couple of doors down from the company’s current location at 7541 Girard Ave. and hired many of his former employees from England, whom he considered part of his family.

Don’s son, Dave, and his brother, Doug, now run the day-to-day operations of the company. Sister Patty Coleman also works with them part of the time.

Another brother, George, worked for the company until 1999 when he started his own company - GDC Construction - with his son Pancho.

Don noted that the first home built by a Dewhurst in La Jolla still stands on Remley Place. It’s still got pretty much the same character as when it was originally built, he said.

The brothers say it is not uncommon for them to work on a home that their father and grandfather worked on before them.

Volunteers, too

In addition to building homes, the Dewhursts participate in numerous community projects and organizations, donating time, resources and encouraging their employees to get involved locally.

Don reminisced about building the cross atop Mount Soledad with his father, Walter.

“I remember painting it when we were done,” he said. “It was an effort we did on a volunteer basis.”

When asked about the success and longevity of Dewhurst & Associates, Doug replied: “Do good quality work, exceed your customer’s expectations, always be loyal and truthful with your customer and remember that the customer always comes first.”

In keeping with tradition, the company remains truly a family-run operation. Many of the firm’s employees and subcontractors share a multigenerational connection as well.

“We’re able to take that experience that has trickled down from prior generations and pass it on to our clients to give them the best job that we can,” Doug said. “I think that our reputation is based on that.”