J.B. Coxwell Contracting was established in 1983. Initially, the company focused on land clearing and earthwork but quickly expanded its operations to include complete site development. We now install underground utilities, as well as complete heavy highway and civil construction in the public and private sectors and are proud to be the most well respected heavy civil construction firm in Northeast Florida.
Our founder, J.B. Coxwell, understood the importance of loyalty, commitment and quality. As a result, everyone from the company’s leaders to its managers and workers all have years of hands-on experience in the construction industry. We understand the unique challenges of conducting horizontal construction work in Northeast Florida and our teams have the experience, skills and knowledge to deliver exceptional results for each and every client. We also provide disaster relief services that serves communities throughout the southeast when they need it the most.
We know we can’t do it all, but we also believe that we are stronger together. Therefore, we have integrated a variety of services that support other contractors, including aggregate and dirt sales, crushing and screening services and construction debris recycling. Faith. Family. Work. This is not our motto but a statement of our beliefs as we serve our families, employees and community.
Our mission is to serve our community, its businesses, our friends and neighbors by providing the necessary services that support its growth and livability, making life better for all. We believe in doing a job right the first time, meeting our commitments, and treating everyone fairly and equally. We are also committed to providing a safe and supportive work environment to everyone who becomes a member of the J.B. Coxwell employee family.
Our vision is to provide the services that keep our community safe, accessible and thriving. To this end, we deliver the construction, demolition, disaster relief and other services required to meet this goal. We work where we live and are truly committed to meeting the needs of our community.
J.B. Coxwell started with this company with his family, his faith and his years of experience working in the construction trade. Through hard work, sacrifice and dedication, he took out a line of credit and transformed it into a multi-million dollar business. His commitment to doing the work right, with no cutting corners or sub-par materials, established his reputation for honest, quality work completed on time. This work ethic and belief system is the legacy he leaves his children, his employees and the community he loved.
“One man with one shovel started this business.” J.B. Coxwell.
J.B. Coxwell was born in 1939, in Wing, Alabama to parents Archie and Carly Coxwell. As one of eight children and the son of a sharecropper he achieved only a 9th grade education, but was smart and willing to work hard to make a good life for himself and the family he would one day have.
J.B. quit school and purchased a $2 bus ticket so that he could join an older brother in Clearwater, Florida. Once there he got a job installing fences around trees at a golf course so that the bulldozer could remove them. Soon he replaced the bulldozer driver, still only 15 years old, proving even then that he was ahead of his time. He continued to work in the Florida construction industry, gaining extensive experience and insights into what it took to be successful in this business.
J.B. moved to Jacksonville, Florida with Helen, his new bride, and began working for Duval Engineering, starting at the bottom rung and eventually working his way up the ladder. He mastered each level of skills and eventually becoming the first non-college graduate to become supervisor and later superintendent. During this same time he developed his principals of delivering quality work and treating everyone fair.
J.B. turned down a $10,000 bonus to stay with his then current employer, Cadell Construction, because he had decided to start his own business. He took a second mortgage on his home, and established River City Paving which eventually became J.B. Coxwell Contracting, Inc. He knew construction but had no experience with administration, but his wife Helen stepped in, turning completion tickets into bills, managing the finances, insurance and much more.
The company grew to over 20 people. J.B. believed in hiring smart people, especially those who knew things that he didn’t, demonstrating both wisdom and leadership. Through his actions he established the foundation of valuing employee talent and skills that continues to this day. His wife, two daughters and his son were both working in the company at this time.
The company was earning more revenue and J.B. began to diversify, adding new services that complimented the core construction business as well as establishing additional revenue streams. During this time J.B. also reaffirmed to additional core business beliefs. First, you can’t get paid if you don’t do the work and second, don’t go into debt to grow the business. His son-in-law Wayne joined the company this year.
In the late nineties, an unexpected offer came to J.B. A construction company (Superfos) wanted to expand into the Jacksonville area and wanted to buy J.B. Coxwell Contracting. After discussing the matter with his family, J.B. agreed to the sale. He stayed on as a consultant and his son and son-in-law remained as employees as well. His wife and daughters chose to leave. The new company had similar values and beliefs as J.B. and things went well.
The new company was purchased by another one, and it wasn’t a good fit for J.B. and his team. Their non-compete agreements were about to expire so they planned to start a new, competing business when they were offered the opportunity to repurchase the company. And they did, J.B and his Family purchased shares of the company, so the family-owned business could continue.
The recession hit the Florida construction industry hard and J.B. Coxwell Contracting was not immune to its economic impact. The company downsized with J.B. keeping all essential staff as well as those who had talents and skills that he didn’t want to lose. The company’s diversification strategy and low debt allowed it to survive through the recession when many other businesses failed.
The recession ended and the company grew again, rehiring employees and serving more customers than ever before. During this growth, J.B. reaffirmed the company’s commitment to its employees, hard work, low debt and diversification. These cornerstones continue to this day.
J.B. Coxwell died peacefully in his home after an illness, leaving behind a hole that is still felt today. His commitment to performing quality work, treating everyone fairly and with dignity, and valuing the talents of others, lives on through his wife and children, and in the company he built. His son David is now president of the company and continues his father’s legacy.
J.B. Coxwell assured that his company was built on a solid foundation of values and principles that assures its ongoing success today and for years to come.
St. Augustine Road (Hood Landing) – During the project, your environmental sensitivity was key to ensuring minimal impact to adjacent natural wetlands and the subaqueous waterway crossing completed at Julington Creek. Your firm’s outstanding safety program, qualify of work, concern for cost and ability to meet schedule were instrumental in allowing the JEA to be able to meet a reasonable budget for the project and complete it without delay. Team-work, advanced notice and coordination with local residents also minimized complaints during the project which allowed us to focus on the work.
Norman FrancisJEA Field Engineer
Congratulations on an extremely well-executed cleanup effort in the wake of Tropical Storm Fay. Getting our city back to normal after the storm was a tremendous task and we could not have accomplished it so efficiently without you.
Mayor John PeytonCity of Jacksonville
After storm debris caused our golf course to be severely damaged, we called J.B. Coxwell. Not only were they very responsive to our needs, they delivered on what they promised. I highly recommend this organization and it’s great team to anyone!
Mary L.St. Augustine, Florida
J.B. Coxwell has a long-standing reputation in Northeast Florida of providing high-quality underground utility construction. It was my privilege to work with J.B. Coxwell on the North Main Street project, and I look forward to working with you in the future.
J.B. Coxwell has provided services on a number of projects important to PGA TOUR. It has provided site and civil improvement expertise for projects in North Florida, including tournament improvements around THE PLAYERS, improvements to TPC Sawgrass and development of PGA TOUR’s new Global Home. The J.B. Coxwell team is knowledgeable, responsive to the needs of the project, innovative and delivers the completed work as required and on-time. J.B. Coxwell has been a critical part of our project team.
Michael E. JohnsonAIA SVP, PGA TOUR Construction Services Inc.