After not being accepted into the union as an electrician and being disqualified from becoming a policeman in Portland, due to color-blindness, Mike Wilson was told by a man in his church to try to become a fire sprinkler fitter. After being told what a fire sprinkler fitter was, he applied to a local sprinkler company in Portland in August of 1969. After waiting four months, they finally called and told him that he had been accepted.
It was always his dream to have his own company. In 1977, he started his own core-drilling company and in 1978 he applied for his Fire Sprinkler Contractor’s License.
In February of 1979, with $10,000 saved up from core-drilling nights and weekends, he finally received his license and S & W Fire Sprinkler Company was born. Like many ambitious people who start companies from scratch, he worked all the hours he could. He worked every day except Thanksgiving and Christmas for the first 15 years. In the beginning, he bid all the work, did most of the fabric
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