SAN RAFAEL − When Jerry Thompson was 18 years old, he wasn’t sure which direction his professional path would take. Fortunately, with a little paternal guidance, he was able to forge his way to a successful career. “I got involved in the electrical trade through the encouragement of my father,” he explains. “When I graduated high school, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do. My father was an electrician, and he said the trade had done him well and encouraged me to take the exam for an electrical apprenticeship. I took his advice, passed the exam and, within a couple of years, began my apprenticeship. From there, I worked my way up to journeyman status and eventually founded my own company in 1993.”
Today, as owner of Integrity Electric, Inc., Jerry says his favorite part of his job is receiving positive feedback from happy customers. “Besides enjoying the work itself, I like the fact that people are thankful when we finish. When you restore power to someone’s home after an outage, they’re generally very appreciative, which feels good.”
Originally from San Francisco, Jerry currently resides in Novato with his wife and business partner, Kari. “Living and working in Marin County has provided us with a lot of great opportunities,” he says. “I appreciate the fact that the economy has enabled us to expand even in the face of a recession. I also like not having to cross too many bridges to get to work.”
Outside of work, Jerry engages in a variety of active pastimes, from playing drums to swimming. “I play drums in my church worship band, as well as in a local group called Factor 11. I’m also on the swim team at Rolling Hills Club in Novato.” In addition to his personal hobbies, Jerry enjoys spending time with Kari and their two daughters, Isabelle and Danielle, whether going on ski trips or solving jigsaw puzzles together.
In his life and career, Jerry espouses the importance of being present when opportunity knocks. “Woody Allen said, ‘80 percent of success is showing up,’ which I definitely agree with,” he says. “Even if you’re just starting out and don’t know anything, if you simply show up, have a good attitude and give your all, you’ll be surprised how far you can go. On the other hand, a good attitude won’t make much difference if you don’t seek out opportunities to succeed.”
When asked the first thing he’d do if he were to retire tomorrow, Jerry says he would do some traveling before returning to give back to his community. “I enjoy travel, so I’d spend about a year roaming the planet. After a while, however, I think that would lose its luster and I’d want to get involved in something more rewarding, like charity work. I think I have a gift for service, so I’d probably devote some of my time to volunteering in the community.”