The path to success for Precision Precast Erectors began to take shape in 2007, when a private developer approached Lou LaVé regarding the construction of a new landmark office building. That project prompted Lou and his son, Denny, to found PPE in early 2008.

The schedule for that office building was aggressive — 62 working days — and their fee depended on the ability to deliver quality, safety and incredible speed. In an industry where an installation rate of 15 precast pieces per day was exceptional, the PPE team averaged 27 pieces per day. The client was ecstatic with the work, not to mention the time and money saved.

Since 2008, PPE has continued to grow steadily, being named 5 times to the Inc. 5000 list of America’s fastest-growing companies.

Much of that growth can be attributed to the company’s expansion of services, as steel projects now make up a significant portion of PPE’s portfolio. With a core staff of journeyman ironworkers, our new service offering provides quality steel building installations for our clients.

“We bring the same level of expertise and quality to our steel projects as we do for precast,” Denny says. “That has helped us expand more than we thought possible.”

What’s next for PPE? Responsible, strategic growth, he adds. “We’re hiring and training, of course, but our core focus is providing value for our clients on all projects.”


Precision Precast Erectors has grown into an industry leader in the years since that first project, thanks to several different factors:

  • The experience, skill, and reputation of Lou, Denny and other key members of the PPE team.
  • A family atmosphere that fosters collaboration and innovation, where contributions and ideas are valued on merit — whether they come from top managers or crew members.
  • A continually evolving precast installation process that enables PPE to work more quickly than other erectors, staying on schedule and budget while maintaining quality.
  • Experienced ironworkers and foremen who ensure the same timeliness and quality for the company’s steel projects.
  • An unwavering dedication to excellence, as evidenced by our company’s status as a Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute Certified Erector and roster of satisfied clients.


Call us at (208) 981-0060 or email info@ppe-llc.com to learn more about the benefits of working with Precision Precast Erectors, and how we can bring the same high standards of Performance, Speed and Safety to your precast or steel project.




Denny has more than 20 years of experience as an ironworker (and now nearly 15 as a business owner), but his resume is more varied than one would expect. After all, how many people in this industry — or any industry, for that matter — have spent two years exploring Europe, including time at a monastery in France? Upon returning from his travels, Denny achieved journeyman status as an ironworker in 2003. He has worked and managed projects throughout the western U.S., including several years in the Rocky Mountain region and California before coming to the Pacific Northwest. Today, he has stepped into a CEO-type role at PPE, focusing on strategy, vision and growth. Even as the industry and PPE continue to innovate, however, the company’s keys to success remain the same: staying on schedule and on budget, doing things the right way and helping clients mitigate the risks in every project. “We feel that the people who hire us are under our protection,” Denny says. “That’s why we always act with honesty and integrity.” Denny is active in the Catholic Church and spends his free time enjoying the outdoors, reading and sailing his Hobie Catamaran with his family. He and his wife, Gina, have six sons — along with a dog and two cats. They live near Windy Bay in northern Idaho.


With more than 40 years as a union ironworker and 30 years of precast and rigging experience, Lou’s track record and knowledge are unparalleled in the industry. His skill at managing projects both large and small, along with his ability to surround himself with top-caliber talent, have been instrumental in PPE’s success. “Hire the smartest people you can find,” he says. “Then, let them blossom and be geniuses!” As the company continues to grow, Lou has taken on additional sales duties while also serving as a mentor to PPE superintendents and other employees. “Our team has been expanding, so mentoring is really big for us right now — both in the office and in the field.” It’s fitting that Lou would co-found such a family-focused company: Born and raised in Montana, he is the 15th of 16 children and now has 11 kids of his own, along with 32 grandchildren and 2 dogs. The family connection to PPE runs deep, too — three of his daughters, two sons, a son-in-law and even one daughter’s father-in-law are part of the company. “I’m really proud that we still have that family aspect,” he says. Lou attributes PPE’s “mind-boggling” growth to performance and staying on schedule. “We get repeat business because of the quality and speed of our work,” he says. “Schedule is everything in today’s market.”



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Caleb joined PPE in 2012 as an Apprentice Ironworker and worked his way to General Superintendent and subsequently to Operations Leader. He oversees project planning, scheduling, and performance, ensuring that PPE maintains its reputation for delivering projects with the highest quality and efficiency. His collaboration with stakeholders, including Employees, General Contractors, Clients, and Suppliers, exemplifies his commitment to fostering strong relationships and ensuring project success.
When Caleb is not at work you can find him golfing, boating and spending time with his family!


As our General Superintendent Cory sees that all PPE jobs are run safely, efficiently and effectively. In addition to his crew responsibilities, scheduling and interactions with our clients, he assists with bidding, estimating and even billing. Cory has more than 25 years as a Union Ironworker and joined PPE in 2014. His previous experience includes oil field construction, lumber mill work and house framing. As an industry veteran he says the difference is having owners that are Ironworkers that prefer to surround themselves with craftsmen and women who share the same passion for the trades. "Denny and Lou will say it's us that makes them successful" Cory says "but they have built PPE into what it is." Cory has two sons that live in Montana and a daughter in Spokane. An Idaho native, he currently resides in Spokane with his two miniature pinschers and enjoys collecting sports memorabilia and remodeling his house.

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Vern got to know Lou and Denny while he was working for another precast firm — and after more than 20 years there, he left to join PPE. As a field superintendent and project manager, Vern handles several precast jobs at a time, from pre-job planning to running the crews as the work proceeds. As a PCI-certified auditor, he also ensures PPE projects meet the standards of the Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute and maintains the company’s certification. “I’m always on a job, but always planning others, too,” he says. “It can be stressful — I don’t have any hair, and I haven’t for a while!” That stress is offset by how PPE takes care of its employees, though, he adds. “I left a corporation that was all about the bottom line. Here’s, it’s not about profit at all costs.” Vern grew up in Spokane, where he earned the “Puggy Hunton Award” in school — joining a list of former winners that includes former NBA star John Stockton. He lives near Priest River with his wife of 23 years, Angie. They have five children, and enjoy family activities such as camping, picnics and day trips around the area.


Shad was the first employee hired by PPE's founders -- after taking a brief hiatus early in his tenure, he came back to lead crews in the field. A journeyman ironworker and welder with more than 20 years experience, he's been around heavy equipment and construction since he started working for his family's logging and excavation business as a young teenager. He works primarily on PPE's precast projects, although with his varied background, he can jump in and support steel and rigging projects, too. "Here everybody steps up! We figure out how to get the job done." he says. Born in Coeur d' Alene, he continues to live in the Athol-Bayvew area of Idaho with his wife , Tara and their daughter Taylor. He enjoys hunting, riding his dirt bike, golf, working out and forging knives in his spare time -- and he enjoys working for a company committed to helping their employees to improve both personally and professionally. " We're not blood, but for as much time as we spend together, we are family, " he says.



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Nicki has 15+ years of experience in successful administration support roles and 5 years as an estimator with PPE. She lives in the beautiful silver valley with her husband and enjoys family life with her three grown daughters and grandkids.

Matt Smith, Leader, Dept of Get Work

Matt was born and raised in Alaska and served in the Marine Corps for 10 years before coming to North Idaho to settle down with his family. His construction experience spans a variety of roles including technical sales rep, superintendent, project manager and estimator. Matt and his wife, Andrea, spend most of their free time trying to keep up with their four daughters.

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Jason Merz

Jason brings over 20 years of Ironworker experience to our team. A Spokane local, Jason co-owns a bar in town and enjoys hunting, fishing, and the outdoors.


Andrew joined the Ironworkers Union in 1996, building America for over 25 years! Andrew brings a great deal of experience and knowledge to every project he works on. He takes great pride in all that he does, and strives for perfection, never leaving until the job is done, and done right. In his off time, Andrew enjoys spending time with his best friend and wife, Sabrina and their two energetic and fun Corgis, Slick and Dixie. Living 3 hours away, he relishes in the time he gets to spend with his 3 grown children. You will often find him crabbing off the beautiful Oregon Coastline while traveling up and down in their Motorhome. He also enjoys his Thursday evenings “Throwing the rock” on his league bowling team “Spare Change”. All in all, Andrew is a fun loving, family guy with a passion for his work and career and is proud to be a part of the PPE family.

Andrew Winters



Jean-Luc LaVe is the third of five LaVe's to don the ironworker mantle, and did so in 2008. Since then he has gained experience in several different aspects of the trade, from rebar, structural steel, metal buildings and finally precast. Jean-Luc is a father to a two year old boy, a husband, and values family, work ethic and character. Growing up Jean-Luc raced motocross, played hockey and basketball and enjoyed all competitive sports. He is focused on gaining more knowledge and leadership skills to continue developing as a member of our team


Robin came to the PPE family in 2018 after working for several large general contractors in the Pacific Northwest area. In her 30 years of working in the trades she has worked on many types of projects… commercial, demolition, education, healthcare, industrial, manufacturing, mixed use, sports venues to name a few. Robin is the oldest of 6 siblings and understands the importance of family and keeping our loved ones safe. Robin lives by PPE’s client driven philosophy. EVERYONE that she works with is under her care and protection. Her job is to keep everyone safe so they can go home to their families. When not traveling for work, Robin resides in Woodland, WA. She has 7 grandchildren she loves to spoil and spend time with. When she is not with kids you will find her with a great bunch of friends from her earlier years as a competitive soccer player. Robin says, “It’s great to have such terrific grandchildren, wonderful friends and a great job! I am blessed!”


MARISA RILEY, Operations Coordinator

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Marisa has more than 14 years of experience in the construction industry and has been with PPE since 2020. In her spare time, you can find her working on her house in Hayden, camping and ATV riding enjoying all that North Idaho has to offer. “Working for this company is like a breath of fresh air. They truly do treat their employees like family and want you to be the best you can be both personally and professionally” Marisa says.