It may sound like a cliche, but the seven regional winners inThe News'2003 "Best Contractor To Work For" contest really do care about their employees. Just ask them. "This job is fun," expressed Kevin Finch, a comfort advisor at Pacific Aire Inc., Ventura, Calif., one of the Select Seven. "Everything here is first class. Everyone is very well trained; I work with people who want to make the team better. What you see here is not a front. It's real. It's truly a unique situation."

You'll get similar employee testimonials from all of the winners. They are Isaac Heating & Air Conditioning Inc., Rochester, N.Y.; Engineering Excellence Inc., Cincinnati; A-Temp Heating and Cooling Inc., Clackamas, Ore.; Gem Plumbing and Heating Co. Inc., Lincoln, R.I.; Pacific Aire Inc., Ventura, Calif.; Tiger's One Hourâ„¢ Air Conditioning & Heating, Largo, Fla.; and All Seasons 500 Heating & Air, Huntsville, Ala.

Complete coverage of the seven regional winners can be found in this issue. See the stories "Family Owned, Professionally Operated," "Perfecting The Recipe For Success," "Success Means Taking Care Of Technicians," "Straight Answers And Great-Smelling Techs," "Empowering Employees Is The Top Priority," "Top Pay, Training, And Sunshine To Boot," and "Contractor Brightens Lives Of Employees."

Publication date: 01/26/2004