Nashville Roofing & Sheet Metal Contractors
Bobby Herbert: Roofing & Sheet Metal Innovator
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Company History The Company Now
W.G. Bush: Brick Company Owner
W.G. Bush

The original company, W.G. Bush & Co., was founded in 1865 by Major William G. Bush along the banks of the Cumberland River in North Nashville. The enterprise specialized in masonry, building supplies, sand and gravel and, by 1900, had grown into one of the largest firms of its type in the South. In 1891, the Mayor of Nashville signed a letter granting a downtown parcel of land to W.G. Bush & Co. in a push to establish the city as a major manufacturing center. This company produced many of the materials utilized in the reconstruction of post Civil War Nashville and its subsequent growth. In fact, most of the buildings on the Vanderbilt University campus were built from handmade bricks formed by the W.G. Bush Co. at the turn of the century.

T.L. Herbert: Contracting
T.L. Herbert

Thomas L. Herbert, Sr., married Sara, William Bush’s daughter, and, in 1909, changed the business name to T.L. Herbert & Sons. The downtown building at 174 Third Avenue North, housed the business offices from 1911 – 1961. The company range then grew from building supplies to include general contracting. This expansion eventually led to the formation of several contracting businesses owned by the Herbert family, Herbert Materials Co., including three brickyards in North Nashville, an additional brickyard in West Tennessee and a barge line which dredged sand and gravel from the Tennessee River.

R.D. Herbert Sr.: Roofing & Sheet Metal
R.D. Herbert, Sr.

Robert David Herbert, Sr., grandson of T.L. Herbert, followed the family tradition of carving out a niche and building a successful company. He focused his attention on the Roofing & Sheet Metal Division of the original T.L. Herbert & Sons Company. RD Herbert & Sons Company was incorporated in 1946, at the end of World War II, and established the tradition of quality workmanship, integrity and sophistication that continues today. Two buildings located on Harrison Street served as the sheet metal shop and offices for the fledgling contracting and sales firm. From its earliest days, the company policy has been to provide the best service for a fair price, never sacrificing quality for expediency.

R.D. Herbert, Jr.: Roofing & Sheet Metal Company
R.D. Herbert, Jr.

Robert David Herbert, JR., worked at Herbert Materials Company following his honorable discharge from the Air Force. He and his brother, John S. Herbert, became involved with the brickyard segment of the business. During this time, Bauman Williams became president of the company and marketed the fabrication and installation of air conditioning spiral ductwork. Close relationships with the M.T.Gossett Company, the first dealer south of the Mason-Dixon to sell Carrier products, and Nashville Machine Company led to many of the first air conditioning projects utilizing ductwork fabricated in the shop of RD Herbert & Sons.

R.D. Herbert, III: Re-Roofing
R.D. Herbert, III

The expansion of the company can be attributed to R.D. "Bobby" Herbert, III. He worked his way up through the various jobs in the company and achieved his goal of running the company. Bobby used the economic recession of the 1970's to create work by seeking the lucrative re-roofing market. When the shop and offices moved from Harrison Street to 3rd Avenue North, Bobby used the opportunity to create a new “state of the art” sheet metal shop. Please click on the photo to the left for more information about this remarkable leader.

W. Houston Herbert, the fourth generation of RD Herbert & Sons Company (seventh of the W.G. Bush Company), now runs the family owned business specializing in roofing, waterproofing, and sheet metal fabrication.

His interest in the family trade began at an early age when he wrote a school letter stating his intentions to join the roofing business. His unwavering interest propelled him through the ranks of the company from summer roofing work during his teen years, to project management and estimating to Vice President under his father, R.D. Herbert, III.

Hands on training and immersion management facilitated Houston's smooth transition to President and Owner in 2005. Building upon the legacy left by his father, Houston continues to advance the business as he proves to be a leader in the green roofing trend and in solar roofing technology.

Betty Herbert: Sheet Metal Fabrication
Betty Herbert

For several years Betty Herbert worked along side her husband and son learning the particulars of the industry and visiting job sites. Houston’s mother managed the family owned business for 5 1/2 years before handing the reins over to her son.

Her strength kept the company going after the sudden death of her husband, Bobby, in 1998. Even during her years as President, she remained the voice of the RD Herbert & Sons Company as the receptionist fielding phone calls, dispatching maintenance crews, scheduling repairs and handling customer concerns. In the last year, she has reduced her hours spent in the office; however she is still the matriarch of the company.

RD Herbert & Sons Company has always taken pride in having a loyal employee base; workers who have 20, 30 or even 40 years with the firm are not uncommon. Benefit programs like profit sharing, pension plans, and desirable health insurance plans help to foster that kind of loyalty. Most of the company’s 80+ employees work 40 hours per week – year round.

continued commitment to integrity and quality workmanship resulted in the honor of being named Roofing Contractors of the Year in 1997 by RSI Magazine. Our company is recognized by Carlisle SynTec, a leading single-ply membrane manufacturer, as a “Hall of Fame” contractor with nearly 900 “Perfect 10” installations.