The Clark Associates companies have been serving central Pennsylvania and the greater east coast since January 2nd 1971, when brothers Glenn and Lloyd Clark began in the electrical contracting business with the fundamental belief that if you treat customers right, they will return. While the Clark Associates companies are now involved in a whole lot more than electrical contracting, the founding principle of excellent customer service at a fair price still remains.
Growth and expansion have been prominent themes since Clark Associates was founded 40 years ago. A "back of the house" mentality forged the company's commitment to constantly seeking out ways to make life easier for the end user, and that often meant the company itself had to branch out into new territories. Clark Food Service Equipment, Calumet Enterprises, Clark Fire Protection, and Noble Chemical were founded throughout the 1970s and 1980s, while Hawk Industries and Commercial Stainless were also acquired so that Clark Associates could offer mechanical, manufacturing, service, and equipment and supplies sales to its customers.
To facilitate this rapid expansion, the foodservice companies relocated to a larger building in Smoketown in 1990 before quickly outgrowing that location and moving to an even larger building on Old Philadelphia Pike in 1993. This cleared the path for the mechanical division to join Clark Service & Parts—which was now under the management of Glenn's son, Glenn Jr.—in a move to the newly vacated Smoketown building.
Clark Associates opened its first cash-n-carry Restaurant Store in 1993, which proved to be such a successful way of selling foodservice supplies and equipment that several other stores were established across central Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Delaware over the next decade. 1993—four years before the original founders' retirement from the company—also marked the year that Lloyd's son, Fred, took over controlling interest of Clark Associates, Inc. Fred has served as the president ever since and, in 2004, was honored as Foodservice Equipment & Supply's Top Achiever - Dealer, as well as Pennsylvania Restaurant Association's Associate Member of the Year.
In 2004, The WebstaurantStore.com brought Clark Associates into the world of e-commerce as the largest online restaurant supply company on the web and has since been a driving force behind the company's growth. The Clark Distribution Center was opened in 2005 to serve as the shipping and receiving point for Clark Food Service Equipment, The Restaurant Store, and The Webstaurant Store, with a second Clark Distribution Center coming along in 2006 that doubled the size of the original.
2008 marked Clark Associates' first physical venture beyond the Northeastern United States as Clark Food Service Equipment expanded its operations into Sarasota with the founding of Clark Florida. 2009 brought with it the introduction of Clark Convenience Store Products, while Clark EcoEnergy debuted in 2010 as Clark Associates' newest division. A third warehouse also opened in 2010, with yet another following in 2011 when The Webstaurant Store established a distribution center in Madisonville, Kentucky.
What started over forty years ago as an electrical service company with 2 partners and 7 employees has grown into a family of companies that employs more than 1,000 people, operating out of 15 buildings in 5 states. While the company may not have a physical presence throughout the country, its venture into the world of e-commerce with the wildly successful Webstaurant Store has given Clark Associates a strong foothold in all 50 states and beyond! Having been named to Central Penn Business Journal's Top 50 Fastest Growing Companies for 3 years in a row and with customer satisfaction rates at an all-time high, there's no question that Clark Associates is looking forward to another 40 years of success, growth, and outstanding service!
Clark Associates' first home in 1973
Lloyd (left) and Glenn Clark in the early years
The original home of Clark Associates in 1976
In 1978, Clark Associates moved into a much larger building in Intercourse
Clark Service & Parts moved to Smoketown in 1993
Clark Mechanical and Clark Service & Parts share the Smoketown building
The Restaurant Store came to Harrisburg in 2003
FE&S Associate Publisher Brian Shilling (left) presents Fred Clark with the Top Achiever award in Chicago
Delivery trucks began operating out of the new Clark Distribution Center in 2005.
The Clark Distribution Center (CDC) opened in January 2005
The Webstaurant Store‘s second distribution center in Madisonville, Kentucky
The Restaurant Store‘s seventh store location in Baltimore, Maryland
The Clark Distribution Center opened in Delaware
Glenn & Lloyd Clark founded G/L Clark Associates as an electrical contracting business in Hatville, just east of Intercourse, PA. The business was first formed on Lloyd’s 40th birthday.
HVAC division is added to G/L Clark Associates
Lloyd’s son, Fred Clark, joins the company out of high school
Company moves to a bigger building in the center of Intercourse, PA
Clark Food Service Equipment is founded
Calumet Enterprises is founded by Lloyd and Fred
Clark Fire Protection is founded
Hawk Industries, Inc. is acquired
Commercial Stainless, Inc. is acquired
The G/L is dropped from the name G/L Clark Associates, Inc.
Noble Chemical is founded
Clark Associates moves to a bigger building in Smoketown, PA
Clark Service & Parts is founded
Glenn’s son, Glenn Jr., joins the company to manage the newly formed service division, Clark Service & Parts
Clark Food Service Equipment and the corporate offices move to a bigger building at 2209 Old Philadelphia Pike
The first Restaurant Store opens in Lancaster
Fred Clark takes over controlling interest of Clark Associates, Inc.
The Restaurant Store opens in Lehigh Valley, PA
The Restaurant Store opens in Philadelphia
Glenn & Lloyd Clark, founders of Clark Associates, retire
The Restaurant Store opens in Wilmington, DE
Clark Mechanical Services, Inc. is formed out of Clark Associates with Lloyd Clark’s long-time right hand man, Barry Martin, as president
The Restaurant Store opens in Harrisburg, PA
Fred Clark is honored as the year’s Foodservice Equipment & Supply’s Top Achiever – Dealer
The WebstaurantStore.com launches
Fred Clark is honored as the Associate Member of the Year by the PA Restaurant Association
Clark Distribution Center is opened in Lancaster
The Restaurant Store opens in Reading, PA
A second Clark Distribution Center is opened in Lancaster, twice as big as the original CDC
The brand new Clark Associates corporate office building is opened in Lancaster
Clark Food Service Equipment expands its operations into Sarasota, FL
Clark named CPBJ's 11th fastest growing company
Clark Convenience Store Products division is founded
Clark named CPBJ's 9th fastest growing company
Third, new warehouse is opened
Clark EcoEnergy division is founded
Clark celebrates its 40th anniversary
Clark named CPBJ's 6th fastest growing company
The Webstaurant Store opens its second distribution center in Madisonville, Kentucky
Clark Florida moves to a new office and warehouse in Bradenton, FL
Clark ranks 6th in Foodservice Equipment Reports magazine’s Top Dealers list, and is fastest growing company on the list
Clark named CPBJ's 2nd fastest growing company
Clark recognized as Business of the Year by CPBJ
TheRestaurantStore.com becomes a separate division
The Restaurant Store opens in Baltimore, MD
The Webstaurant Store opens its third distribution center in Reno, Nevada
Clark Food Service Equipment opens Clark TurnKey Solutions Group in Charlotte, NC
Clark named CPBJ's fastest growing company
Clark Service Group opens an office in Baltimore, Maryland
Clark opens a distribution center in New Castle, Delaware
The Wilmington and Lehigh Valley Restaurant Stores move to larger store locations
Clark named CPBJ's 3rd fastest growing company
The Webstaurant Store opens a distribution center in Cumberland, Maryland
Clark Associates, Inc. Named Foodservice Equipment and Supplies 2015 Dealer of the Year
The Webstaurant Store opens a distribution center in Albany, Georgia
Clark named CPBJ's 5th fastest growing company
Clark named CPBJ's 2nd fastest growing company