Immediately after Cyclone Gabrielle ripped through Hawke’s Bay, Cam Devine knew he had to do what he could to help his local community.
Cam, who leads Devine Plumbing in Napier, told his team he would use his plant and equipment over the following two weeks to support recovery efforts for people in the hardest-hit areas. He would continue to pay staff wages during this time, but during those two weeks, helping the community was more important than business as usual.
Rising to the challenge, his staff worked 12-hour days to get essential services back up and running for residents whose homes were flooded, damaged and filled with silt.
“I just thought it was the right thing to do, but boy was I proud of my team,” says Cam, in typically reserved style.
His decision to put public health, safety and well-being ahead of business operations impressed judges at the 2023 New Zealand Plumbing Awards.
So much so that Devine Plumbing was awarded New Zealand Master Plumber of the Year at awards night at Te Pae in Christchurch on Friday 5th May.
Cam received the magnificent Kaitiaki award in 2001 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Master Plumbers affiliate – a 55cm tall statuette of a plumber carved from a single block of pounamu.
Just this year, the award was named and blessed as Toa Mo Te Wai Haumaru, or Champion of Safe Water.
This highest national award for plumbing companies is judged on criteria such as customer service, marketing, image and performance, and Devine Plumbing excels in all areas.
Cam started the business 10 years ago with his father Mike. Since Mike retired six years ago, Cam has made his father proud and grown the company from an apprentice to a full-time team of 27.
A positive, practical and hardworking role model, he has made a real impact on the plumbing trade in Hawke’s Bay.
Always willing to help others and share his knowledge, Cam motivates his people to achieve successful outcomes for customers and the company.
Perhaps most impressively, his warm, calm and friendly demeanor reflects in the work culture and inspires a fantastic team of like-minded and talented employees.
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