Forty years ago, Brad Pregeant started his career in the family business as an apprentice Roustabout. Little did he know then that the company his grandfather started was to become his permanent employer for the next four decades and would grow in size to the GIS giant it is today.

Grand Isle Shipyard was founded in 1948 and since then the Pregeant descendants have worked alongside their employees in all areas of then, ship building, to now, Energy sector specialists.


“You had no option to do anything else. You had to work here, and we all looked forward to joining the company. Back when I started with GIS, there were probably 50 people in the whole company, and we thought we were something else back then with 50 people. And to see where we are today is quite an accomplishment for GIS. We’re very strong today. I never would have dreamed we’d have gotten this far or became what we are now.

I worked my way up from roustabouting to equipment operating, sandblasting and painting, and being a welder’s helper. I’ve been through every aspect of the business. I’ve learned it hands-on. That way you know everything that is going on, and when someone tells you it can’t be done, you know differently. It’s hands-on learning for sure.”


First-hand experience has given Brad a unique perspective on how much GIS and the industry has changed especially over the past twenty years. As GIS evolved and expanded its service offerings, clients such as Chevron, Shell and BP joined Exxon and Conoco growing the company portfolio to the point where GIS now offers full turn-key service capabilities. Clients have the option to cherry-pick from the diverse range of services, including engineering, fabrication, environmental and civil services to name a few. Evolution equals change and GIS is at the forefront of technology and business development with solutions applicable to the Renewables sector such as solar and wind energy. Brad believes that client trust formed over the years is GIS’ winning ingredient.


“The very long-term relationships that we’ve had with our customers has resulted in GIS being asked to partner with them in the shift towards Renewable Energy and we’re thankful for that as it adds to our diversification. When we started out, when my father was in the business, Shell had approached us. We had never worked for Shell before and they asked us where we had been. ‘How come you don’t call on us? Where are your salesmen?’. And my dad responded to him, ‘We don’t have any salesmen’. This was at a time when we had about four hundred staff members; my father said: ‘I have four hundred salesmen and their work speaks for themselves and if we have the opportunity, we’ll prove it to you’. And since then, we haven’t looked back. Our quality of work and dedicated service has gained and kept clients for decades.”

And it is this wide range of services that will ensure GIS has many more decades of prosperity ahead. Brad has served his family business throughout his career holding many roles in the field and then progressed into leadership roles within the Executive Management team. He currently holds the role as Vice President of the Civil and Aggregates Division which includes the corporate Equipment and Maintenance Division. These divisions not only support many of the major and local clients but also the internal GIS family of companies and departments.

Brad leads a team of qualified personnel who assist clients by not only providing heavy equipment rentals and aggregates, but also labor support for many local projects. While he has had a long and successful career, Brad admits that retirement to his cattle ranch is his ultimate career move. But not quite yet! He is keenly focused on progressing and promoting the activities of his divisions and helping GIS take its next step into an even more exciting future.


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