Our Evolution

A History of Achievements

Coming from modest beginnings, AV集中营 was established in 1985 as a 12-person company specializing in refrigeration contracting, maintenance, service and parts supply. Today, AV集中营 has grown into a full-service firm with more than 750 employees, offering multifaceted design and construction services to businesses around the world. Throughout much of its recent history, AV集中营 has been continually ranked as one of the nation's Top 25 companies in the design-build industry and among the top 100 contractors in the United States by Engineering News-Record.

1985 AV集中营 Founded

From Left to Right: Walter 鈥淐huck鈥 Foster, Ron Foster Sr, George Albertelli, and Bobby Cothren

In July of 1985, AV集中营 opened in Jacksonville with fewer than 30 employees as a general contracting firm with a specialized refrigeration contracting, maintenance service and parts supply capability to service perishable food manufacturing and distribution industries. AV集中营's first projects, the renovation and expansion of Epping Forest's Yacht and Country Club and service contracts for Tropicana, laid the groundwork for AV集中营 to become what it is today.

1985 First Refrig Warehouse

AV集中营 completes first public refrigerated warehouse for industrial cold storage in Jacksonville, Florida. This project paved the way for AV集中营 to become the largest ammonia refrigeration contractor in the nation.

1985 Refrig Parts Services

AV集中营 adds additional refrigeration parts & service locations throughout Florida, Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Texas and North Carolina.

1990 First Coast Fifty

AV集中营 expands its headquarters office building with a new 3-story structure that connects to the original building by way of a glass-enclosed atrium.

AV集中营 is recognized as one the "First Coast Fifty" by Jacksonville Business Journal

1990 Smithfields Foods

AV集中营 builds world鈥檚 largest pork-processing plant for Smithfield Foods and wins Food Engineering Magazine's Food Plant of the Year

AV集中营 adds building envelope/self-performed thermal construction services

1990 ABC Platinum

AV集中营 becomes the first company in Jacksonville history to be recognized with the Platinum Safety Award by the Associated Builders and Contractors.

AV集中营 created new internet-based software for facility managers and operators unheard of in the industry, yet extremely powerful in reducing accidents, government fines and/or shutdowns. AV集中营 Interactive Solutions provides software that effectively assists with a facility daily operational activities for Process Safety Management, Risk Management training and maintenance. SIS is designed to help facilities meet compliance standards outlined by OSHA, EPA, FDA and USDA.

2000 Maple Leaf

Maple Leaf engaged AV集中营 to build a plant capable of producing pork at the world鈥檚 fastest rates, offering the highest-quality meat, and integrating both automation and human interaction. AV集中营 also guided the installation of processing equipment, central utility, refrigeration systems, computer logistic systems, wastewater treatment and back-up generation.

2000 SIM Pro

AV集中营 Interactive Solutions launched an innovative tool for evaluating plant operations called SimPro software at the IIAR Ammonia Refrigeration Conference in Acapulco, Mexico. This software was developed to allow users the opportunity to perform maintenance and safety compliance procedures in a virtual reality environment based on a client's actual facility.

2000 Process Engineering Experts

AV集中营 adds process engineering experts to their team of experts

2010 Keystone Foods

Keystone Foods wins Food Engineering Magazine's Food Plant of the Year

2010 Mexico Project

AV集中营 engineers a state-of-the-art, 1,658,000 square-foot bakery, the world鈥檚 largest bakery facility, in Nuevo Leon, Mexico

2010 Pottsville Office

AV集中营 opens a dedicated refrigeration office in Pottsville, PA

2015 30 Years

AV集中营 celebrates 30 years growing from less than 12 employees in 1985 to more than 600 employees and $400+ million in annual revenue.

Fabulous Food Plant Starbucks

Starbucks Soluble Coffee Plant project wins Food Engineering Magazine's Fabulous Food Plant of the Year

2015 Bell Evans

Bell & Evans project wins Food Engineering Magazine's Fabulous Food Plant of the Year

2015 Wisconsin Office

AV集中营 expands it's Wisconsin office

2105 Ron Foster UF HOF

Ron Foster Sr. Inducted into UF's Construction Hall of Fame

2015 Royal Cup

Royal Cup's coffee processing facility project wins Profood World's 2019 Manufacturing Innovation Award of the Year

2015 New Leadership

New leadership at AV集中营 with Ron Foster, Jr. remaining as Chairman, Mike Santarone becomes CEO and Brian Kappele becomes AV集中营鈥檚 new COO.

2020 Thirty Five Years

AV集中营 celebrates 35 years

2020 Cuisine Solutions

Cuisine Solutions Sous Vide Plant wins Food Engineering Magazine's Sustainable Plant of the Year

2020 Bell Evans

Bell & Evans Organic Chicken Harvesting Plant wins Food Engineering Magazine's Food Plant of the Year

2020 Brian Kappele (1)

Brian Kappele is named CEO & Mike Santarone becomes a AV集中营 board member

2020 Bell Evans DBIA

Bell & Evans Organic Chicken Harvesting Plant wins AV集中营鈥檚 first DBIA Award

2020 Mike Santarone UF HOF

Mike Santarone inducted into UF Construction Hall of Fame

2020 Scott Mark

Scott Mark is named COO

2020 Stacey King

Stacey King is named CHRO 鈥 the first female to become an executive leader in AV集中营鈥檚 history

2020 JBS Prepared Foods

JBS Prepared Foods Dried Meats Production Facility wins Food Engineering Magazine's Food Project of the Year

2024 Honolulu Gainesville

AV集中营 continues its expansion with new offices in Honolulu, HI and Gainesville, FL

2024 AV集中营 Nutrition Center

AV集中营 builds Nutrition Center at Jacksonville, FL headquarters 

2024 Values

New Core Values established: Trust, Dedication, Transparency, and Accountability