Gus Duncan - Owner & Contractor
Gus began his career in construction when he was sixteen years old in his home country, New Zealand, with an aggressive four year apprenticeship that focused on all aspects of both commercial and residential construction - building "from the ground up" as he likes to say. He used his acquired knowledge to pursue building as a career in the many countries in which he's resided since adolescence: New Zealand, England, Sweden, and the United States. Gus moved to Santa Barbara, California in 2007, where he currently resides. In Santa Barbara he's had a range of building work, including managing the construction of 100+ unit apartment complexes, to renovating kitchens and bathrooms, and even small jobs as well such as installing doors.
Lover of surf, golf, camping, hiking, biking, and the great outdoors in general, Gus is simply one of those all around fun guys to be around.
Lauren Duncan - Accounts & Admin
Lauren manages the books for Toa Construction. Born and raised in Santa Barbara, she's behind the scenes on a day to day basis, but will often travel to job sites to check out the scenery, or provide lunches when necessary as she loves to cook!
Toa - Companion & Mascot
If you work with Toa Construction, you'll most likely meet Toa himself. He's the furry face of the company and travels with Gus to most project sites (but don't worry, he doesn't come to places where he's not welcome or allowed!)
What Does "Toa" Mean?
Toa is not only the name of the team mascot here at Toa Construction, but it also has roots in Gus's home country of New Zealand. The native people of New Zealand speak Maori and their word "Toa" means warrior. Our company is much nicer than a warrior would be... We just thought the name was cool, and a nice throwback to Gus's roots.
More About New Zealand
New Zealanders call themselves 'kiwis' after their national bird, the kiwi. This flightless and nocturnal bird is native to New Zealand.
New Zealand fruit growers named the kiwi fruit after their national bird in the 1960's. They thought the skin looked like the feathers of the Kiwi bird.
What did he say?
"Sweet As" = Cool
"Like chalk and cheese" = Two things that could not be more different
"Brekkie" = Breakfast
"Bach" = Vacation Home
"Mate" = Good Friend
"Chocka" = Full
"Good on Ya" = Well done
"Gumboots" = Rubber Boots (rain boots) ... One of Gus's favorites!
"Jandles" = Flip Flips
"She'll be right" = Everything is going to be okay
"Box of fluffy ducks" - Doing Well (Ex: Q: How are you? A: Box a fluffy ducks, mate!"
"Togs" = Bathing Suit
Yes, we understand that not all of these words would generally come up in a work setting. But judging from past experience, if you work with Toa Construction, you will most likely get to know Gus on a personal level as well. Heck, you will probably be good mates in no time... And for this, we offer the guide above!!
And if you go to NZ, don't even think about talking about your Fanny Pack... We won't explain why, just trust us!!