Member Spotlight: Steve Weaver with EASE
on August 25, 2020
In the home modification industry, quality over quantity is important. For Steve Weaver, this concept is the driving force behind his company, EASE, and this is what led to their recent honor of being announced as the 2020 National Contractor of the Year for Universal Design Bathroom.
“Quality matters more to us than pumping out the volume, so our clients get to know us, and our commitment to them is probably one of our most endearing characteristics,” states Steve.
Steve Weaver is the CEO of EASE, a family-owned business between himself, his son Nick (in charge of project management), and his wife Lisa (CFO). Together, the three of them each hold a critical role in the success of their business.
“As for me, I do all the sales, marketing, assessments, design, contracts, and many installations. I am the general contractor for the business,” said Steve. “With the help and input of Lisa and Nick, I lead most of the business development efforts, as well.”
Prior to EASE, both Steve and Lisa worked in the high-tech arena for Fortune 500 companies. However, when their daughter Cassi was born, their eyes were opened to the need of the home accessibility market. Born with cerebral palsy, Cassi was in need of just about everything in the market, including overhead lifts, roll-in showers, ramps, and home automation. However, the level at which they needed these products and services were very difficult to find.
“So, with the experience in various careers and hobbies, and utilizing our creative problem-solving skills, we took a leap of faith and started EASE to help others with our passion for making homes safe and accessible in an appealing way,” explained Steve.
Cassi is not only the inspiration of the business, but she also continues to inspire Steve and his family on a daily basis, having taught them the importance of quality of life versus quantity.
“When she was just three weeks old, we were told to take her home and let her die. That was our first experience in advocacy, as my wife reminded the doctor that he didn’t have a crystal ball and how dare he steal anything from us or Cassi. He couldn’t possibly definitively know that she would die, and, without Lisa’s advocacy and care, she surely would have passed,” explained Steve. “The first two years were rough, consisting of frequent flier miles on LifeFlight with lots of aspiration pneumonias, but Cassi’s strong will proved that she had a different mindset than the doctor. Continually getting stronger over the years, we celebrated her Sweet 16 and then, in June of 2014, Cassi passed unexpectedly overnight. We like to think of it as having had sixteen bonus years. And, for someone who could not ever speak a word, she continues to inspire us with the quality of life she had while she was here. We continue serving others because of the indelible mark Cassi made on our lives and the compassion and understanding that allows us to share Cassi’s love with others.”
EASE was recently announced as the 2020 National CotY Award Winner, Universal Design – Bath after completing a very special project for a teenage girl with cerebral palsy. They remodeled a bathroom which she would be able to access no matter what, whether she was having a good day (which included assisted walking) or a bad day (which might mean using a rolling shower chair). Working with a physical therapist to help assess the girl, Steve learned that her gait—or ability to walk—was affected where she would have her toes point down and touch the floor with each step. This meant that the floor needed to be completely free of any lippage - or height differences - between tiles or transitions between flooring materials and still provide great traction. This, and many other features, made the wet-room concept bathroom completely accessible in her “forever home.”
“To be recognized as the National Contractor of the Year for Universal Design Bathroom is an honor that I am truly humbled to receive. It has built self-confidence and, at some level, is a pat on the back from Cassi for having done a good job for one of her peers,” said Steve. “If not for Cassi, I wouldn’t have the deep appreciation for quality vs. quantity that we have in our family.”