Meet Your 2015 Dealers of the Year

Sponsored by the Window and Door Dealers Alliance
Introduction by Emily Kay Thompson; winner profiles by Stacey Freed
October 28, 2015
FEATURE ARTICLE | Strategies & Practices

COMMUNITY SERVICE

Coastal Windows & Exteriors

www.mycoastalwindows.com, Beverly, Mass.

Coastal Windows & Exteriors not only helped build the home for Habitat for Humanity, but also donated products and services and raised funds for the project.

Stephanie Vanderbilt was a teacher of the deaf for 12 years before opening Coastal Windows & Exteriors with her husband David, who had worked in the home improvement industry for 25 years. Stephanie wanted to carry over her empathy and compassion for service into her business. “I wanted to bring that in as a core purpose of my brand,” she says.

Quick Stats

Leadership
Stephanie Vanderbilt, owner

2014 Sales volume
$2.7 million

Employees
12

That purpose drives everything CWE does, from making sure all its products (roofing, siding, windows and entry doors) are energy efficient and earth friendly to its commitment to education and community support.

Totally Involved

CWE has contributed to countless community service projects, leads local business collaboratives and served as a media resource on home improvement issues. The company was the exclusive window sponsor for Boston Magazine’s Design Home 2014, which created the first media-sponsored net zero home in Salisbury, Mass. The events produced as part of this initiative benefited Boston Children’s Hospital.

Coastal Windows & Exteriors was selected for a featured role in two national episodes of A&E’s “Flipping Boston.” Here, owner Stephanie Vanderbilt has fun on set with the show’s stars, Peter Souhleris and Dave Seymour.

Last November, CWE donated approximately $55,000 in products, services and labor to the North Shore Habitat for Humanity, to help renovate a three-family home in Lynn, Mass. “That kind of thing doesn’t happen often these days,” says Mark Bergeron, Habitat’s construction supervisor for the project. “Coastal was a fantastic partner and it was a great experience for us and them.”

Coastal enhanced its support for Habitat with a “No Place Like Home Campaign.” Vanderbilt believes that participating in a charity event has to include a bit of entertainment to engage the community. Since it was the 75th anniversary of “The Wizard of Oz,” CWE sponsored a free event at the local mall and had children create yellow bricks.

“We invited the community to help build the home, and afterward we delivered turkeys to them,” she says. The project was made more meaningful to Vanderbilt because she had worked as a teacher in that town. “I was so happy to be able to serve that community again.”

Secrets to Success

  • Establish and reveal your company’s overall purpose; integrate it into everyday operations.
  • Partner with other like-minded businesses.
  • Get involved in the community.

Vanderbilt says that she believes in the adage “a rising tide lifts all ships” and partners with other like-minded businesses to share their commitment to working together for the good of their customers and for one another.

Stephanie and Dave Vanderbilt, far right, present a check to Beverly Bootstraps at the Meat House in Beverly, Mass.