National Door and Trim is celebrating their 40th anniversary with a public open house on Nov. 8 from 3-7 p.m. Pictured is an aerial view of the current facility located at 1189 Grill Road, Van Wert, Ohio. (Photo submitted)
National Door and Trim is celebrating their 40th anniversary with a public open house on Nov. 8 from 3-7 p.m. Pictured is an aerial view of the current facility located at 1189 Grill Road, Van Wert, Ohio. (Photo submitted)

VAN WERT – In the past 40 years, National Door and Trim has grown from providing quality work in interior and exterior doors to providing work in custom wood flooring, custom cabinetry, countertops and more. On Thursday, Nov. 8, the company will be holding a public open house from 3-7 p.m. to celebrate their 40 years of service in Van Wert County.

National Door and Trim, now ran by Tom Turnwald Jr., began in 1978 with Tom Turnwald Sr. who saw a need for prefinished doors and trim.

“Back then there wasn’t anyone that I knew of or that he knew of that was doing that so it was a new concept,” said Turnwald Jr.

When the company began, the concentration was on residential work.

However, from 2006 to 2009, the housing market took a hit and was down 75 percent. As some companies were going out of business, National Door and Trim was picking up market shares to maintain 50 percent. The company lost roughly 50 percent of their sales and 50 percent of their employees in that three year period.

But rather than give up, National Door and Trim saw opportunity. They began work on commercial properties as a way to gain business.

“In 2009 we started looking at other things to do other than residential because housing starts were down about 75 percent across the country,” said Turnwald. “We started doing commercial, multi-family, and assisted living. That’s really been a big part of our growth in the last five to six years.”

“Cabinets also became a bigger part of our business,” added Turnwald who noted that National Door and Trim began cabinet work around 2008. “As we’ve grown since the recession, it definitely looks different than what it use to be.”

National Door and Trim also overcame adversity in 2002 after an F-4 tornado struck Van Wert and leveled the facility.

“Teem and National Door and Trim were both leveled in Industrial Park,” said Turnwald. “We bought what was the Findlay Industries building back in the day and moved us, Teem, and KAM into that building for a year until National Door rebuilt.”

National Door and Trim had secured the Findlay Industries building in Ohio City within two weeks of the tornado and were functional around six weeks after moving into the building. Within a few months, said Turnwald, the company was “back to normal.”

“The whole thing was devastating to go through, but we have such great employees here,” said Turnwald. “Everybody showed up the next day after the tornado and asked how they could help. We started putting people to work right away whether it was cleaning up or salvaging equipment or moving stuff to Ohio City.”

Turnwald said he sees steady growth for the future of National Door and Trim.

“We see a lot of untapped potential in the commercial business,” said Turnwald. “There’s a lot of cities that I think we will continue to grow in.”

National Door and Trim services around four to six homes a day from surrounding areas and employs around 50 people. The company includes a showroom which shows off kitchen cabinets and countertop work.

For the 40th anniversary open house, National Door and Trim is inviting their contractors from the area as well as local citizen to come in to see their products. The facility is located at 1189 Grill Road in Van Wert.

“Van Wert is a great community to live in,” said Turnwald. “Van Wert is a town where you return home to be close to your family and friends and that is an atmosphere that we have done a good job creating here at National Door and Trim. People feel like it’s part of their life.”