ADI specializes in suspended acoustical ceilings, including metal and wood ceilings and walls. Bill and Betty Lee Cramer founded the company in 1965, and it is now celebrating its 58th year of operation. In April 2023, James and Heather Chaney purchased ADI, which is based in Kent, Washington.

Bill was a military veteran who earned a degree in forestry from the University of Washington. His early career was in the dimensional lumber business. He was soon asked to work in the newly formed Acoustical Ceiling Tile division of the lumber company. At that time, the acoustical ceiling business was all glue tile made of wood or mineral fiber. Shortly after Bill joined the ACT division, the use of metal suspension systems (T-bar, grid, etc.) came into use and jumpstarted the industry, leading it to where it is today. Bill went on to form ADI in 1965.

James and Heather are the third generation of the Chaney family to work in the acoustical ceiling trade. James’ career started in Southern California as an apprentice in the Carpenters Union when he and Heather met and married. James moved up quickly to journeyman while concurrently earning his degree in drafting and design. James was then given the opportunity to become an estimator and progressed to vice president. During this period, Heather assisted in the daily operations of the front office. James began working with Kip Cramer and ADI in 2013, and the two grew the company into what it is today. Heather progressed her career to include 20-plus years of executive leadership experience, which now compliments her ability to run the day-to-day operations of ADI as an MWBE.

The company now employs 40 to 60 workers.

The ADI team

Business Success

James, whose official title is senior project manager and CEO, says: “ADI continues to offer early budgeting and design services, including BIM modeling and specialized engineering. We work closely with our trade partners to stay at the cutting-edge of technology. This combination compliments the projects and clients we strive to assist.”

Over the last 15 years, Seattle has had the fortune of a strong technology market that has now slowed. However, the city also has strong healthcare, aerospace and manufacturing industries. Seattle continues to have one of nation’s leading numbers of construction cranes.

“The most interesting aspect of our industry is the wide variety of products that we work with,” James says. “The advent of standard and custom wood, metal, plastic, fabric, etc., ceiling and wall treatments has broadened our experience and keeps us fresh and interested in the industry. We also enjoy working with the architects, designers and manufacturers in the design and installation of unique custom products and non-standard installation of standard products.”

Climate Pledge Arena

A Tough Job

Heather feels that the hardest parts of the job are ensuring the well-being of employees, company growth, installer education, and exceeding client and partner needs. She says the company is always a balance and is incorporated into the daily decision-making process.

“Training our crews towards the successful installation of new products [is very hard],” Heather says. “Every year, something unique and different is getting installed. Ensuring the crew, contractor and design team are all on the same page is very important towards our success.”

ADI has a diversified backlog and continues to collaborate with the leading GCs in the area. The company sees the slowdown of the technology market as a temporary pause. In the meantime, ADI continues to provide its services to a wide array of clients within the greater Seattle community.

Long-Term Goals

James says the company’s long-term goals are to stay at the leading edge of the industry with the latest technology, and continue to partner with the best manufacturers, contractors, architects and designers to bring inspiring installations to the industry.

He is not sure how the company will conquer hard times when they next hit.

“It’s difficult to say [what the company will do],” James says. “ADI has successfully weathered through turbulent times dating back to 1965. Going forward, we hope to continue [to] meet clients where they are at. Whether it’s private or public, technology or health care, continuing to focus on understanding the needs of our client makes all the difference in uncertain economic times.”

Climate Pledge Arena

Project Profiles

Project 1
Architect: tgba
Owner: Puyallup Tribe of Indians
GC: Andersen Construction

What was the scope of the project for your company?

  • Suspended Acoustical Ceilings

    • Armstrong Optima and Ultima in suspended Prelude Grid.
    • Armstrong Circular Formations clouds with various height Axiom.
    • Armstrong Infusion Shapes and translucent clouds in various tones.
    • Rulon direct-attached Wood Beams and Column covers.

Project 2
Architect: Populous
Owner: City of Seattle
Operator: Oak View Group
GC: Mortenson

What was the scope of the project for your company?

This is the atrium entry at the Climate Pledge Arena in downtown Seattle, which highlights a Ceilings Plus Custom Illusions Torsion Spring Ceiling with over 500 different custom sized panels.

  • The entire project included:

    • Armstrong Kitchen Zone, Mesa, Cleanroom VL, Optima and Lyra family of suspended ceilings.
    • Armstrong ACGI custom Flat Panel Series 6 Incline “Lift & Shift” ceiling mounted to suspended Unistrut.
    • Armstrong ACGI custom Wood Grille Ceilings.
    • Armstrong ACGI custom Linear Wood Ceiling over the Coors bar.
    • Decoustics Claro Baffles.
    • Polysorb custom suspended Baffles.
    • Ceilings Plus Illusions suspended Torsion Spring Ceilings.
    • Gordon Millennium Wall Systems mounted to all walls facing center ice.