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Facing Arizona: I am a rare Arizona native

(Thomas Yoxall / Sure Shot Photography)

Editor’s note: Facing Arizona is a series that will appear on KTAR.com and social media  — follow KTAR News on Instagram and Facebook for updates — highlighting unique and everyday people across our state and give you a glimpse into their lives.

My name is Chris Harrell. I am 47 years old, a husband, father of two and I was born here in Arizona.

To some, that may be weird because Arizona is a transient state and there aren’t many native Arizonans left. I spent my high school years in California and then came back to Arizona, kind of like Steve Martin’s “King Tut.”

I have been in construction most of my adult life, and I am thankful for the first opportunities given to me by Verde Building Corp., Holms and Sons and Kaiser Construction. These companies and the individuals within are a large part of where I am today.

I am a general contractor now, and I also subcontract my supervision out to other general contractors as well. I still maintain my KB-1 license, which is a dual commercial and residential license here in Arizona. I enjoy subbing myself out to other contractors because it offers me an enormous degree of flexibility. I can be hired on as an employee or assume the role of a subcontractor.

For me, I enjoy the physicality of being a contractor. I feel delighted taking something from nothing to a completed, tangible entity, whether that be a project I am working on at home, restoring a classic automobile or a 20-acre construction project. I get my hands dirty, I work up a sweat and, in the end, I give myself a little pat on the back for a job well done.

I couldn’t see myself cooped up in an office for eight hours a day, and I couldn’t see myself doing this type of work in any other state; it’s just my personality and personal preference. — Chris

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