Personal Stories

Team Members Randy and Mikea Glenn

Who they are: Randy Glenn, Company President and Mikea Glenn, Retail Manager

Without Randy and Mikea, there would be no Extreme Exteriors team to talk about, so we’re very excited to introduce them as our spotlight this month. Randy and Mikea both attended Wylie High School in Abilene. Randy studied business at McMurry University and Mikea attended Texas Tech University. They love going to Lake Brownwood with their daughter, Lanier, most weekends in the spring and summer. You can also find them enjoying getaways to Destin, Florida when they have the chance.  Mikea oversees all aspects of the retail team, and has done so ever since the grand opening of the Extreme Exteriors Garden Center in Abilene ten years ago this month! She’s currently leading the team’s efforts to open the Extreme Exteriors showroom in Fort Worth. As company president, Randy wears many hats. He loves meeting with clients and planning their dream outdoor spaces, which keeps him on the road quite a bit. When he’s in the office, you’ll find him drawing up designs and overseeing operations.

Why they do what they do: “We have the best jobs! Our team provides spaces for families and friends to come together and enjoy each other. We believe that the best seat in the house is with the company you keep, and that should be in your own backyard.”

Tal and Tyree Fillingim

Clients: Tal and Tyree Fillingim

Project: Outdoor kitchen, pergola, pool and spa, custom firepit, and pavers

Why: They wanted a place that all their children could enjoy at the same time – a place that amounted to their own vacation destination that they wouldn’t have to pack their bags and go away to make memories as a family.

Extreme Exteriors Services Used: Design, Construction, Retail

Tal and Tyree love cooking outdoors, and their first thought was to build an outdoor kitchen. As part of their research into working with the Extreme Exteriors team, they visited a few other properties that the team had worked on.  Tal and Tyree were impressed with Extreme Exteriors’ ability to create some truly impressive outdoor living areas, so they decided to go all-in with a new pool that features a tall waterfall and grotto seating area.

 

Tal is an architect by trade, so he was very involved with designing the space. He knew the look he wanted to achieve and worked through several different design concepts until everything looked right. Tyree also had great ideas, such as adding the custom firepit and helping to design the layout of the pool – even down to details such as the depth of the pool.  She said, “We could have made the pool deeper, but it was a conscious decision to keep the pool at about five and a half feet so that I could see the kids at all times.”

The pool depth is still generous enough to get a nice plunge while jumping from the top of the grotto or coming in off of the slide. As the weather warms up, they are looking forward to using the pool day in and day out. Tal and Tyree are also pleasantly surprised at how often they use their spa. “Even on summer evenings, we used it more than we thought we would,” Tal said.  Plenty of summer cookouts will be in order too, and Tal is thrilled with the new lighting that the Extreme Exteriors team added to make grilling in the outdoor kitchen safe and easy!

Overall Tal says everything met or exceeded their expectations. They are very pleased with the cohesive look that the Extreme Exteriors team was able to deliver. He and Tyree feel very confident recommending the Extreme Exteriors team; in fact, they have now come full circle from where they began. “We’ve already had people (prospective customers) come out to see our space,” Tal said.

We are so grateful that the Fillingims trusted us to create the outdoor space they envisioned. The fun thing is they have room to grow, with more property beyond their fence line and a space in the yard that they’re considering for a putting green. They know who they’ll be calling when they’re ready for more! In the meantime, they have a wonderful space to enjoy together and make memories as a family that will last forever.

Team Member Derek Koen

Who he is: Derek Koen, Accounts Receivable and Asset Manager

Derek was born and raised in Abilene, graduating from Abilene High School. Derek has a B.S. in Accounting from McMurry University. Derek loves any recreational sport, but especially enjoys kayaking, bowling, and playing disc golf. He recently got married and describes his wife lovingly: “My incredibly talented wife Melanie is an eighth-grade algebra teacher at Abilene ISD and we have been married for four months now.” They have a one-year-old husky named Aspen who they like to take to the park. Derek and Melanie also enjoy spending weekends with their families. Derek worked part-time for Extreme Exteriors before joining the team full-time in December 2016. 

Why he does what he does: “I do what I do for Extreme Exteriors for a sense of accomplishment. I strive every day to leave work knowing I’ve done work that matters and that I have assisted in turning our clients’ dreams into reality.”

Lynn and Dee Ann Key


Project: Pool and spa, landscaping, outdoor living areas

Why: They love their home and neighborhood, and couldn’t picture being happier anywhere else. They had already remodeled the interior of their home, and the next logical step was to improve their outdoor living space.

Extreme Exteriors Services Used: Design, construction, irrigation, retail

The Key’s starting point was truly a blank slate. Lynn and Dee Ann rarely used the backyard because it was only grass. It wasn’t the kind of place that they would invite people over to enjoy, but that doesn’t mean they don’t love their home. They are very comfortable there and over the years, they had remodeled their home to suit their needs. From time to time, their interior remodeling contractors would say, “Let me know if you’re ever interested in a pool.” Without causing any offense, Lynn and Dee Ann decided the best course of action would be to find a professional pool designer.

The Keys were referred to the Extreme Exteriors team by some friends who were satisfied clients. They were shown several different design options for their pool and were happy with the clarity provided, especially because they hadn’t owned a pool before. In the end, they settled on a pool that features a raised spa with waterfall and a tanning ledge with bubblers.

Their favorite thing about working with the Extreme Exteriors team was there were no surprises. Lynn said, “Looking back it was a very wise choice because everything went off without a hitch. They would tell us what they were going to do and then they did it. They made progress every day, stayed on track, and were able to finish ahead of schedule.” Dee Ann and Lynn are very happy with the outcome and feel that it’s the best money they’ve ever spent!

The backyard has truly been transformed from a place that they didn’t really use to an extension of their home that they use every day. It’s also now a place they feel comfortable inviting guests to enjoy. Dee Ann is looking forward to hosting some special events soon — a graduation party at the end of May and a baby shower in June. Her college-age son and daughter have also invited their friends to come enjoy the newly renovated space and that’s been fun for the family. Dee Ann and Lynn are the kind of people who feel comfortable being at home, and we are thrilled that we got to be involved in making their home even more peaceful and inviting.

Team Member Archie Crosby

Extreme Exteriors Team Member Spotlight

Who he is: Archie Crosby, Purchasing Agent

Archie has worked for Extreme Exteriors for a year and half. He enjoys camping trips with his family and taking nice long road trips to Georgia, where he grew up.  He misses the tall pines of south Georgia, but he’s settled into country life with his beautiful wife and soul mate Shasta. Together they have a daughter, Scarlett, and two sons, Evan and Frost. They also have two dogs, six cats, and a small flock of chickens. His land adjoins his brother’s and his parent’s, and Archie enjoys being close enough to spend time with family but far enough away to still have his own space. Archie also enjoys drawing, helping others, going to zoos with his kids, and working outdoors.

Why he does what he does: “The why is such an important part of our lives. It’s who we are. Why is not a question, it’s an answer. I want to be part of something that is so much bigger than myself and I get to do that with Extreme Exteriors. I get to help make memories for families and generations. I’m a part of that regardless of whether I get credit or not. I don’t need my name passed around the fireplace we built. I just get to know that I was a small piece of that positive effect on someone’s life.” 

Dr. Ameeta Kapu

Clients: Dr. Ameeta Kapu and family

Project: Pool, pavers, and landscaping

Why: She previously had more time to travel, especially to the beach because she loves the water. As her work became increasingly demanding, she couldn’t get away as often, so she wanted her home to be her oasis. She also wanted her son and daughter to more fully enjoy being at home.  

Extreme Exteriors Services Used: Design and construction

What do you do when you can’t visit your favorite vacation destinations? You bring the feel of those amazing places home! When her children were younger, it was easier to get away. But as they grew and her work increased, Ameeta decided to contact the Extreme Exteriors team to see how we could help transform her backyard.

She wanted to capture the resort-style feel of some of the nicer hotels she stayed at during her previous travels. She also wanted a lot of plants because she enjoys beautiful scenery. She was very happy that her design selection process was easy and that the Extreme Exteriors team could offer her what she wanted. “The reason I chose Extreme Exteriors is because they offered high end materials. If I showed them a picture, they could get what I wanted. A lot of others just didn’t offer enough choices or didn’t have the knowledge that I expected.”

One of Ameeta’s top design priorities was a water feature for the pool because she loves the sound of falling water. She also wanted to make sure the pavers around the pool looked like they belonged there and tied in with the house. She said, “They did a great job on the patio. It almost looks like a French street! They listened to what I wanted and tied everything together so well. And they built the pool really fast, which is especially good.”

The pool was ready for her daughter’s high school graduation last year, and they hosted a celebration for her. “Lots of people came over and it was so beautiful,” she said. Ameeta is happy that she could give her kids a nice place that they could enjoy and that she has her own scenic views. Even though she still likes to travel, she doesn’t have the same need as she once did to “get away” for beautiful scenery. We’re so grateful that Ameeta gave us the opportunity to help transform her backyard into the restful, pleasant space she was looking for and that she could share her “story of why” with us.

Team Member Jake Griffith

Extreme Exteriors Team Member Spotlight

Who he is: Jake Griffith, Project Manager

Jake has worked for Extreme Exteriors for seven years. Over the years, he’s worked on some pretty large projects and has been a part of exciting changes within the company. He lives in Hamlin, Texas with his wife Kimberly and children Hailey, Lexi, and Charlie. He also has two dogs, Bobo and Harley. Jake’s interests include old cars and rat rods. Jake enjoys hanging out watching movies with his family and playing video games. And whether you call it a recreational activity or a necessary evil, from time to time he goes “varmint hunting.”

Why he does what he does: Jake enjoys that his work contributes to people’s happiness; and he loves how clients are able to make memories that carry on for generations.

Garza Family

Clients: The Garza’s

Project: Pergolas, outdoor kitchen, firepit, concrete walkways and patio spaces, new trees

Why: The Garza’s have a large piece of property, but before their Extreme Exteriors renovation they rarely went outside. They wanted a safe, fun place for the girls to play and a space to entertain friends.

Extreme Exteriors Services Used: Design, Construction, Retail

Over a period of 20 years, Armando Garza renovated and added on to his original home, making it more comfortable for himself, his daughter, and four grandchildren. When they got to the point to make the outside just as comfortable as the inside they called the Extreme Exteriors team! The Garza’s were looking for two main things; seating areas so they could eat together, and concrete walkways so the younger girls could ride their bikes around. They live on a busy road, so they wanted the girls to have a safe place to play in their own backyard.

The design team went to work and came up with a plan that the Garza’s loved and that fit their investment goal. Stacie explained how they chose Extreme Exteriors over another company. “We had another estimate, but they were going to do less work for the same price. They were also going to have to outsource some of the work. We liked the Extreme Exteriors design because it was more detailed and we got more bang for the buck.” The Garza’s design includes two pergolas. One fits directly over the outdoor kitchen and the other adds visual interest to the backyard patio. They also chose a new wood-burning fire pit and concrete walkways that connect the two patios and curve around the sides of the house. This allows younger sisters Kambri and Addalyn plenty of space to ride their bikes. The Extreme Exteriors team also defined a space for their play structure, adding mulch for safety.

With these enhancements in place, Stacie said, “We’ve been cooking, entertaining people and relaxing by the firepit. It’s just been great. In the past, we’d never come outside and now we’re out here a lot more!” They had fun celebrating with friends on New Year’s Eve, and Stacie is looking forward to throwing birthday parties this year in the backyard, something they’ve never done before. Stacie loved working with the Extreme Exteriors team and encourages anyone who is thinking of working with us to go for it. The whole family really loves their outdoor living spaces, and they look forward to making lots of great memories together in the years to come. 

Team Member King Buchanan

Extreme Exteriors Team Member Spotlight

Who he is: King Buchanan, Accounts Payable

King loves exercising and outdoor adventures! His favorite outdoor sports include skydiving, rock climbing, and hiking. This year, he’s also trained for and completed a variety of running and cycling races. In addition to his full-time work with Extreme Exteriors, King owns a small property rental business. He looks forward to building equity with his business for a more comfortable and stable future.

Why he does what he does:

King has worked for the Extreme Exteriors team for 3.5 years. The company has earned his loyalty through a culture of excellence and comradery along with caring and personable leadership. Building friendships within the team has been one of the many experiences he values from his time with Extreme Exteriors. King said, “It is common for people to attend work and communicate well with coworkers, but the work week becomes fun when you view your coworkers as your team and friends. I have been blessed by this taking place. I have also grown to love the products and quality that Extreme Exteriors provides. Meeting customers and seeing their excitement from our work is a powerful, driving force that inspires me to do my part for all our future customers. I do what I do because of my conviction for excellence, my loyalty to the team and leadership, and a desire to provide the absolute best to our customers.”

Dr. John and Kelley Bliznak


Project: Pool, pavers, firepit, and landscaping

Why: There are two significant reasons – first, they wanted their home to be a gathering place for their family which would give their children great memories and serve as an inspiration for the future. Second, John takes weekend call as a neuroradiologist from his home office. In between sometimes stressful cases, he’s able to take a break to enjoy his plants or jump in the pool to unwind.

Extreme Exteriors Services Used: Design and Construction

John planned his home and backyard to attract butterflies, hummingbirds, and most importantly, people! So far, it’s working great. John’s father loves to stop by and check out the hummingbird activity, and his kids enjoy spending time in the pool. The Extreme Exteriors team designed the flowerbed layout, but John himself organized and planted his abundantly blooming backyard. He is a serious plant-lover, and his yard includes cacti he brought from Arizona, salvias, honeysuckle vines, and blue mist flower shrubs that grow from early spring to late fall. “I had a strong desire to build something and landscape it the way I wanted it. It can be hard to make modifications to an existing home. Kelley sometimes tells people we built the house for the plants!”

When it came time to work on the pool, John drew inspiration from a home tour he took when he lived in Tucson for his neuroradiology fellowship. He said, “I was awestruck by this pool. There were rivulets coming off of flat rock boulders and no coping at all. Kelley and I talked about it and decided if we built a pool, we wanted to emulate that. When we started getting bids, Extreme Exteriors was the first to respond and the pricing was good. Everyone else was extremely expensive.” John and Kelley’s pool has a look unlike Extreme Exteriors has ever done before, with impressively large boulders hugging the pool’s edge. John said the team was able to do a phenomenal job with the resources at hand to build the pool. He admits it’s not exactly like his “inspiration pool” in Tucson, but that pool had a quarry next door and they could get all the granite they wanted at a very low cost. John appreciates that the team working carefully to position each boulder, achieved the right look, and did not drop them into the new pool! In addition, John literally went the extra mile, and drove to Marble Falls to choose more large boulders he wanted to include in his landscape.

Other elements that add to the character of the Bliznak’s backyard include: a custom built firepit, inspired by John’s travels in Africa; and a multi-tiered fountain they like to turn on when they’re hosting parties.

John and Kelley have enjoyed their pool and backyard for more than three years now. Judging from the pictures, everything looks like it could have been completed yesterday! The Bliznak’s are doing a wonderful job of keeping the pool looking great and all the plants healthy and happy. We appreciate them for taking the time to be our client profile and for sharing their story of why. We all have a story of why, and we hope that we can be a part of your story.

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