CAM Services Company History
The story of CAM Services involves a diplomat’s son, a Hollywood writer and a famous pharmacy. It begins in 1987, when a commercial developer who was tired of dealing with multiple contractors for the upkeep of his shopping centers asked his friend Jim Swindle to launch a company that would provide various maintenance services – from landscaping to parking lot sweeping – under a single umbrella.
Swindle accepted the offer mainly because it included free office space, which he figured would come in handy for his burgeoning career as a freelance writer for MGM and Columbia Pictures. “But the phone never stopped ringing,” he says, “so I had to stop writing.”
Since then, CAM Services has grown into one of California’s top property maintenance companies, with five offices around the state and some of the nation’s leading brands as clients, including Jack in the Box, CVS, Amtrak, UCLA, Universal CityWalk’s AMC Theaters, Yum Brands and the cities of San Diego, Malibu and Burbank.
Common Area Maintenance (CAM) Services opened for business in January 1987 with six employees and two trucks. Operating from a tiny office in Van Nuys, Calif., the company served about 40 strip malls in L.A. and Orange counties. As business took off, CAM moved to larger offices in Santa Monica in 1989.
By 1991, CAM had outgrown its Santa Monica headquarters and moved to its current home base of Culver City. That was also the year that CAM hired a young account manager named David A. Herrera, a diplomat’s son and former limousine company owner who would eventually work his way up to company president. By the end of the decade, CAM Services had more than doubled in size, opening a San Diego office and expanding from 20 employees and 150 shopping centers to 50 employees servicing over 300 properties. Largely through word of mouth, CAM also began attracting a number of big-name clients, including USC, Public Storage and the City of Burbank. As the decade wore on, CAM bolstered its service offerings to include irrigation repair, steam cleaning, janitorial, day porter and a 24/7 commercial handyman program.
CAM kicked off the new millennium by opening offices in Orange County and the Inland Empire. Mushrooming to 120 employees, the company added construction, painting and tenant improvement to its service palette. In 2012, CAM celebrated its silver anniversary by expanding into California’s Central Valley. It also debuted several new services: ADA compliance, trash-chute cleaning and stormwater management.
Today, CAM’s client portfolio encompasses more than 1,300 retail, office, industrial, government, educational and HOA properties throughout Southern and Central California. The company is known for its industry-leading customer service, reliability, innovation and environmentally friendly practices.