City Electric Supply Appoints New Regional Manager Over North Texas

DALLAS, Texas — Twelve years ago, 20-year-old Phil McKinney landed his first position with City Electric Supply (CES) as a driver. Today, he’s the newest regional manager in Texas for CES. Born and raised in Waxhaw, North Carolina, McKinney spent his early teen years working on a farm with his grandfather. A natural-born problem solver, as a child, McKinney would take apart lawnmowers and put them back together to see how things worked. When he turned 20, McKinney’s mom told him he needed to find a career. Luckily, she already had a job in mind.

“My mom worked with a lady whose husband worked for CES. The lady told my mom the company was hiring and that I needed to give him a call,” said McKinney.

After his first interview, McKinney could tell CES was where he was meant to be.

“I liked the environment, and I liked the people. It felt organic, and I could feel the family-friendly atmosphere. I got along with everyone right off the bat, and I just knew I was supposed to be here,” said McKinney.

Starting as a driver for the CES Sunset location, McKinney began to climb the ranks, working at the counter and in the warehouse. Quickly, McKinney’s manager realized his potential. With needing a salesperson to manage a specific account, a hybrid role was created that allowed McKinney to devote his attention to customers entirely. Through sales, McKinney realized that this industry was where his career was going to be.

“CES had a customer that needed a dedicated salesman, and the account specialist role was created for me. I did everything for that one customer, from start to finish. That’s when I realized this is going to be my career,” said McKinney. “I was good at forming relationships, and the role got me involved in interacting every day with customers. You start forming relationships, and this job becomes a really tight-knit community.”

What came next was something McKinney never guessed for himself. Vice President of Operations Blair Feidler told McKinney the company wanted to expand its footprint. McKinney was asked to move from North Carolina to Texas—1,000 miles away from friends and family. When the big opportunity was presented, McKinney knew what he needed to do. Pretty soon, he told his family about the adventure he was about to embark on.

“I knew that for me to take the next step in my career, I was going to have to get outside of my comfort zone. I talked to my fiancé about it, and we knew now was the time to do it. We told our families and had a lot of support from them,” said McKinney.

Making the move to Texas, McKinney jumped in with no hesitation. He spent the next few years opening two new CES branches and updating an existing location. Tackling problems early, McKinney was learning with everyone else.

“Coming to Texas, I didn’t know any of the vendors, and I didn’t have any relationships established. It was like starting from square one with learning everything.”

But McKinney’s early philosophy of forming relationships and working hard took him far.

“Developing relationships with customers is something I still believe strongly in today. If someone trusts you, you can work together and do anything,” said McKinney. “The relationships I have formed during my time here in Texas are some of my closest friends today.”

“Phil has always been a hard worker,” said Feidler. “He leads by example and has always been true to himself. What you see is what you get. Phil also spends time with team members to make sure they have all the resources needed to succeed.”

Five years after taking a leap of faith, McKinney is now a regional manager for CES over North Texas. He oversees 19 CES branches and 100 team members. Looking back over his 12-year journey in two states, PMcKinneyil credits his mentorship for the opportunities he’s been given.

“I feel very honored Blair would ask me to come out here and help him. He is my closest mentor, and he’s taught me everything I know,” said McKinney. “CES is something I’ve put my heart and soul into, and to see what we’ve accomplished is incredible.”

“Phil will continue to grow with CES,” said Blair. “He’s shown the drive to succeed from the very first day I met him. I’m excited to see what the next five years look like for his region, and we’re all extremely proud of him.”

McKinney and his team in Texas are looking forward to the future.

“I started as a driver, and now I’m a regional manager. If you told me 12 years ago when I was driving that I would be where I am now, I wouldn’t believe you. My journey to get to this position has been everything I could’ve asked for and then some,” said McKinney. “CES is a family-owned business, and it feels like it. I have been given amazing opportunities here, and I can’t wait to see what the company accomplishes next.”

McKinney’s advice to the next generation entering the trade?

“It doesn’t matter how much you know. You won’t know everything,” he said. “Ask yourself how you can be better today than you were yesterday, and there’s no other option but to succeed.”

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