Ten years ago, RC featured Josey Parks as one of the first handful of Young Guns for his passionate pursuit of perfection as a roofing contractor and his ability to think big. Even then, when much of the roofing industry was slowly transitioning from paper to a digital profession, Parks, at age 25, stood out as an active voice for embracing technology and adopting new principles for sustained success.

While some resisted change and rebuked his warnings of the tidal wave of tech to come — largely because of his youth and inexperience — many, industry-wide, embraced the enthusiasm. After achieving success focusing on metal roofing sales in the residential market, Parks fused his passion for roofing with that love for technology and began innovating independently. 

During the past decade, he’s started or purchased around a dozen different companies within and outside the roofing industry; developed new digital tools and launched new technology platforms for roofing contractors; and was an early adopter of leveraging artificial intelligence to enhance sales, marketing and overall operations. In 2024, he may be forging into his most ambitious and impactful endeavors yet. 

Late last year, Parks, CEO of J. Wales Enterprises — the umbrella corporation he created for his various business ventures — again shook up the roofing industry by purchasing Total Home Roofing. The Florida-based national residential roofing contractor has been a perennial RC Top 100 nominee and reported more than $134 million in revenue in 2022. Despite performing strongly in its multiple markets, Parks said the company required some change, and he is now handling day-to-day operations while overseeing the overhaul. 

Not long after announcing that purchase, Parks and business partner Larry Janesky bought Storm Ventures Group and its annual Win The Storm event. The duo are planning a new, improved, two-day experience for roofing and restoration contractors to level up their storm and retail roofing businesses next month in Dallas.

RC slowed Parks down — just enough — to answer the following questions.

RC: For anyone who doesn’t know, how’d you get your start in roofing?

JP: Knocking doors right out of high school; selling metal roofs door-to-door. I only sold metal and tile for the first 15 years of my roofing career. I saw the value in metal roofing … and comparing it to other roofing systems, I felt like those were just inferior products I didn’t want to offer. So I didn’t. 

RC: Why did you move away from that into other business ventures?

JP: My company was Metal Roofs of Texas, so it was hard to ever do another product and really hard to ever grow out of Texas. Limiting myself by product and geography, that was, you know, a big learning experience.

Initially, I did everything: I was sales; I was managing the crews; I was inspecting the jobs. And then, I really figured out through trial and error — way more errors — how to hire people. I mean really find the right people.

RC: How did you develop that as a skill?

JP: I used to hire people because they had a college degree, and I thought they must be smarter than me. But I learned hard lessons that [it’s] not the case. I tried to develop the ability to solve problems for that role and duplicate that. I’d then find somebody that’s passionate about that part of the business and let them go and solve the problem. That’s really what it comes down to. 

What I found I’m best at is asking questions; seeking to learn and understand. And then finding people who can bring solutions. That’s really my job; find the problem solvers, put them in the right seats and develop the leaders in an organization because you can only grow to the level of the leaders. 

Age: 35

Company: Total Home Roofing; J. Wales Enterprises

Title: CEO

Where's Home? Naples, Fla

Preferred Social Media Tag/Contact Website: @JoseyParks

Young Gun Feature: March 2014

Family Status: Married (2013); four boys ages 1-9.

RC: Ever make mistakes with that?

JP: Oh, yeah, early on, I was an idiot! I had no freaking clue what I was doing. And it cost me millions and millions of dollars. But I’m thankful for all those lessons. I learned that many people are in it for their egos, and they’re not your amigos. They’re terrible for your company. 

RC: Where does your entrepreneurial spirit come from?

JP: I don’t have a clue where it comes from, but there’s something that just drives me. And really, it’s a mission. I feel called for something. I believe the blue-collar worker is the heart of America, and I want to build a stronger America. My mission has always been to bridge blue-collar to technology because I don’t want to see these big tech companies come in and take our industry away. It should be us; we have to be the ones that own it. I’ve always felt the need to build this bridge for the roofing industry, and I just have a fearless side of me, like I just don’t care. So I’m going to keep going. 

RC: In 2014, you were among the first class of nominated RC Young Guns — roofers under 40 — making a difference in the industry. What did that mean to you at the time, and how did it impact your career trajectory?

JP: Coming from humble beginnings, it was really cool to have the early success I did and be recognized for it. That recognition gave me more confidence because it validated all the work I was putting in, and it was cool to be recognized at a young age for my work ethic [and] for thinking outside the box.

RC: Do you view your age as an asset or a disadvantage in this business? 

JP: People would tell me all the time they [had] a pair of boots older than me and didn’t take me seriously. My attitude was to [remain] cool and understand that I’m moving past them. 

The reality is that I never told people I was the company owner when I was out there, door-to-door, because it didn’t really matter. I was a representative of a company, giving them great value for a product or service they needed. That’s it.  

RC: How has that perspective changed?


JP: Now, I’d actually say that when people got to know me, I [gave] them hope about what our future generation of roofers would be like. That was something that [felt] really good. I feel like the roofing industry, as a whole, accepted me and didn’t judge me because of my age. They actually embraced it and celebrated it.  

Josey Parks, pictured in 2014

Josey Parks, pictured as an RC Young Gun in 2014

RC: What would you tell that Young Gun from 10 years ago today?

JP: I’d say stay focused on the roofing industry. Stay focused on what you love, what you’re good at, and what your strengths are. Don’t get into businesses you don’t understand, and know that people aren’t going to work like you or necessarily as hard as you. That’s a really big lesson.  

RC: Why did you purchase Win The Storm, and what will roofers get from the experience?

JP: In-person experiences are more important than ever, and I want roofers to have a place for collaboration and innovation. We respond to neighborhoods and homes at a time of weakness for most people, when they are at their most vulnerable, and some people take advantage of that. But there are a lot of roofers that take great care of people in those situations, and the industry really needs us. I want everyone to learn how. 

RC: So there’s a big-picture feel to this, more so than just hosting a successful event?

JP: I see the roofing industry fragmenting more and more, and I feel I can be the bridge. I can help roofing contractors doing retail understand the storm market, and I can help the storm contractors better understand the retail aspect of the business. That’s really important to me. Aside from the collaboration among roofers there’s just going to be a high level of professionalism there. 

RC: Artificial intelligence (AI) has made significant strides recently in the business world, but you’ve been integrating it into your workflow for a while now. What are you working on?

JP: I’ve said for many years that technology advances strategy. And once you get AI into your business, it’s an unfair competitive advantage. Truly. And I want to have that in my business if I’m competing in a marketplace.  

RC: How does it become an unfair advantage?

JP: We have a tool that, by using AI, can predict how much each sales representative will generate at each appointment. Then, we can use that data to match the right rep who is most likely to close that sale to take charge. We can see how much revenue they’re going to generate tomorrow, like really seeing into the future. 

I also have a product on the marketing side. Once you get the lead, AI helps it understand the type of buyer they are and automatically sends them marketing messages designed to help them make a buying decision. 

RC: What else are you looking forward to this year for roofing?

JP: Aside from Win The Storm I’m not really sure yet, but I think this is going to be a big year. A revolutionary year. I think there’s going to be a massive movement with the trades taking shape in the country, and we all need to be part of the change. Really preach to the world about the opportunities in the trades and seize this moment to attract more talented people into it. No one’s coming to save us.