December 8th, 2018 | Carol Cain | Detroit Free Press
Benkari plumbing: Breaking barriers
Adrienne Bennett is a family business owner who has a track record of breaking barriers as the first female master plumber and plumbing contractor in North America. She began working for Detroit city government as a plumbing inspector when Coleman Young was mayor.
She continued to build her career and entrepreneurial pursuits around plumbing — a profession with few women.
The hard-working, tough-minded president and CEO opened Benkari LLC, a commercial plumbing contractor in 2007. Her two sons, A. K. Bennett and Ibn-Hashim Bakari, are working with her in the Detroit company.
It’s grown to 15 employees and has handled projects such as Little Caesars Arena, the IRS Building on Michigan Avenue and the Anthony Wayne Apartments on Wayne State University’s campus.
She’s giving back by helping to inspire other young people to consider careers in plumbing and other skilled trades through a seat on the Architectural Engineering Board at Lawrence Tech, involvement with Randolph Technical Center and other programs.
Her company has grown as Detroit’s reinvention and revamping from bankruptcy four years ago continues.
They are gearing up to provide plumbing work for the first phase of Ford’s redevelopment of the Michigan Central Station which is intended to help prepare the Motor City for the mobility future.
“I view this company as a legacy to my sons,” she said.