Wendi Zubillaga is the Chief Sales Officer at PetersenDean Roofing and Solar and a 29-year veteran of the residential real estate industry. As Chief Sales Officer at the nation’s largest privately-held roofing and solar company, she oversees all facets of the company’s growth, marketing and sales.
She also helped create the Builder Advantage program, a rewards program that provides incentives to builders. Zubillaga has a proven track record of success that spans a wide variety of clients, allowing her to work with all styles, technologies, budgets and approaches. Her expansive network and industry background includes a focus on residential roofing and sustainability and she works with many of the nation’s top builders.
Please tell our readers a little about your background, and how you got into the solar industry.
I have been in the home building industry for the past 26 years. My brother and I opened a fencing company fresh out of school. After several years with my brother, I met Jim Petersen (Founder and CEO of PetersenDean) at an industry trade show and I decided to join his roofing company as the salesperson. At that time, PetersenDean was a small roofing company located in Northern CA. After many years of growth and success, it was a natural progression to move into the “solar world” as solar is a roofing product.
How many years have you been with PetersenDean?
This is my 21st year with this incredible company.
Tell us a little about PetersenDean and your role there.
Petersen Dean was started in 1984 by Jim Petersen and Joe Dean, two young roofers that decided to work for themselves after learning the trade. The home building industry was attractive to Jim and when I was brought on in 1994, he made it clear that we would be in for a “wild ride.” We began to open offices all over California and then moved into other states. We now operate in five states, CA, AZ, NV , TX and FL. I have held many positions over the years, mostly in a sales capacity, sales rep to Chief Sales Officer and very recently was named President of the Builder Group. This is quite an accomplishment that I am extremely proud of as there are very few women in this role in the entire construction industry.
What do you find exciting about the projects that you are currently working on?
I am excited about the growth in solar uptake on the builder side of the business and have recently partnered with some of the nation’s largest builders, DR Horton, KB Home, Standard Pacific, Richmond American and Taylor Morrison just to name a few.
Homebuilding is a very cyclical industry and we have reacted to the market shifts by expanding our consumer solar business. I am very proud of our consumer teams growth in revenues over the past few years.
If you were to choose three words that you would like readers to associate with PetersenDean and its products, what would they be, and why?
Quality – With more than 30 years in the business we have a proven track record that proves that we stand behind our warranty.
Innovative – Petersen Dean and our incredible family of employees prides itself on improving its procedures and practices to make sure we produce a product that provides a great value to our customer.
AmericanMade- Petersen Dean partners with US companies whenever possible. We have an exclusive relationship with Solar World, the only American made panel on the market. We are committed to providing our customers with the best products available.
Where do you see PetersenDean fitting into the solar industry now, and where would you like PetersenDean to be in 5-10 years?
Petersen Dean has proven to be a force to be reckoned with. We compete against some well funded, highly marketed companies in the solar industry, yet our “small” privately held organization continues to make great strides in proving that a well managed, PROFITABLE roofing/solar company with a proven track record is the right choice. In the next 5-10 years, Petersen Dean will be installing roofing and solar on more homes in its current markets, as well as expanding our operation in several new states.
Where do you see areas for growth in solar, and what are the roadblocks to achieving market growth?
Currently solar is mostly installed in a handful of states. The solar market has opportunities for exponential growth.
Some roadblocks the industry faces are the lack of support from governmental entities and local utilities. Currently, there is a rebate in certain utilities and a 30% federal tax credit. If/When these are no longer available, the solar industry will suffer.
If you care to, tell us a little about your passions outside of solar.
I am very fortunate to have found a career that allows me to travel and meet new people every day. I am a mother of three ACTIVE teenagers and there is never a dull moment in our lives.