Our Story

Learn about our rise from humble beginnings

DeFord Contracting traces its roots to 1967 when Tony DeFord went to work for a company called Ed Federation Transport. There, Tony learned the trade working on a single-axle GMC truck and a 1010 John Deere Loader. The company focused primarily on excavation services and Tony worked hard to master the craft.

A short three years later, Tony took a leap of faith and bought out Ed Federation and became the sole owner of DeFord Contracting. The business operated out of Tony's house in the Meadowlark community. Tony's wife, Sylvia, took on the role of bookkeeper and dispatch, using a two-way radio and answering the phones.

Tony operated the loader and hauled loads of dirt away from excavation sites, often sharing the cab of his vehicle with his young son Carey. The oil and housing booms in the 1970s and 1980s, along with securing the contract to excavate West Edmonton Mall, helped solidify DeFord's meteoric rise to success.

DeFord Contracting has gone on to work on some of the biggest projects Edmonton has ever known, forever changing the landscape of this city while growing its labour force, equipment inventory and service offering to match the pace.

EST'D
1967

1967

Tony DeFord signs on to work for Ed Federation Transport

1968

The business is renamed to Federation & DeFord

1970

Tony DeFord buys Ed Federation Transport and becomes the sole owner of the company, operating out of his home

1970s

DeFord is involved in the development of the first phase of the new suburban community of Mill Woods

1974

The company moves to its new office at 110th Avenue and 164th Street

1975

DeFord's involvement in the North Town Centre (North Town Mall) development laid the groundwork for long-term success

1980s

DeFord receives a contract to excavate the site for West Edmonton Mall

DeFord digs out the route for Edmonton Transit's LRT line through downtown

1990

DeFord becomes involved in much larger projects, including the downtown Grant MacEwan University campus

1999

DeFord Contracting begins doing Paving work

2005

The River Cree Resort and Casino is erected on a site prepared by DeFord Contracting, securing major road and interchange work realigning 79 ave, Winterburn Road and the entrance to River Cree.

2006

Procurement of work and larger-scale jobs drives the need to increase the capacity of the Base works and Paving divisions. New paving, motor graders, loaders and compaction equipment are purchased.

Invitation from Caterpillar Inc. to tour their factory in Peoria, Illinois, where DeFord's new paver is being built. This includes a photo opportunity to sign the new paver as it rolls off the assembly line.

2007

DeFord Contracting Inc. celebrates 40 years in business, employing over 200 people and being recognized as a leader in the industry.

DeFord completes a heavy earthworks upgrade to better support their Excavation division.

Larger-scale projects and client relationships continue to blossom.

2009

Completed a major highway interchange project that realigned the City of Edmonton's Cloverbar landfill and Anthony Henday access.

2011

Secured major subdivision work with Qualico, building the Sienna community of Fort Saskatchewan.

2012

DeFord celebrates its 45th anniversary. Their reputation drives even more Paving growth, including the purchase of two new Caterpillar AP1055 pavers.

1 MILLION TONNES of asphalt are successfully placed by DeFord Contracting! That's about the same weight as FOURTY STATUES OF LIBERTY!

2013

A major expansion of DeFord's facilities, including major yard upgrades, commences. This work sees their office growing to over 20,000 sq ft, with the work concluding in 2014.

2016

Edmonton is recognized as one of the hardest-working cities. DeFord is featured as one of the hardest-working companies.

2017

DeFord turns half a century old!

2018

DeFord establishes its Concrete division, securing its effectiveness as a general contractor.

A major step in upgrading DeFord's tech utilization: adding GPS tracking to the sprawling fleet of equipment and vehicles.

2019

Completion of the internal DeFord Contracting app. iPads are acquired for all order procurement and company tasks.

2020

All hiring, tracking, time capture, ordering, stock levels and workforce notifications are moved to electronic platforms.

2021

DeFord's growth continues, despite the challenging economic times. This is due in part to its flexibility, workforce, equipment and wide variety of services.

The Concrete division doubles in capacity since its inception a mere three years prior.

One of the busiest construction seasons for DeFord concludes, doubling many of the previous years' production values. This is attributed mostly to their skilled workforce and the pride they all take in being an industry leader.

2022

DeFord Contracting, Inc.

DeFord celebrates 55 years of building a foundation of trust for the places where over a million people live, work and play.

DeFord demonstrated a high level of commitment delivering the project with quality workmanship and a high regard for the safety of their crews and the public.

Our Story

For over half a century, DeFord Contracting has been working tirelessly to build spaces that are meaningful and lasting to the people of our great communities. Learn more about the story of our humble beginnings and discover the future of DeFord.

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