Since 1949, ABC has served Texas customers and has become the largest independently-owned and operated pest control company in the state.
My dad and mom started an ABC branch in 1965 in San Antonio, TX. My brothers and I helped out at an early age. I'm the middle son with an older brother, Bobby with ABC Austin, and a younger brother, Dennis with ABC Dallas. I am the second generation in the family business; it's been a gift to have what I consider a wonderful career. However it almost didn't happen that way.
Growing up, I had always wanted to be the cowboy and have a dude ranch up in Colorado. So following that plan I convinced my then girlfriend – now wife – that this was going to be good way to live.
After we graduated from Texas A&M, we went to the University of Houston to earn a second degree in Hotel Restaurant Management and headed out to Colorado and our life on a dude ranch. We were then working as a guest rancher in Bandera, Texas. We were up at 4 AM to round up the horses and then stayed up late at night entertaining the guests. We decided pretty quickly that visiting a guest ranch would be much more fun than having a career in one.
Fortunately, Dad still wanted me to come into the family business. And even though my wife was trying to make her new career plans, she came into the family business as my dad's personal secretary. The plan was for me to work at my dad's office for 2 years. Well, after about 9 months, Kim and I headed out to Houston to start a business.
We started ABC Houston in May of 1985. We pulled into Houston with a U-Haul truck, found an apartment, and started our office. I spent my day's cold calling hospitals and restaurants and my nights were spent servicing the accounts that I sold. Kim had to stay in the apartment all day waiting for that phone to ring. Her highlight of the day was when I got home and she was able to take a walk outside to the mailbox!
But here we are almost 30 years later. And it's all been great!
Meet Raleigh Jenkins
"Reputations aren't easily built but are important to stand by."