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Meet Jordan Trubakoff of TruCollective

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jordan Trubakoff.

TruCollective was founded in 2012 and was initially intended to be a collection of hand-selected local artisans specializing in a variety of skills ranging from woodworking to photography, graphic design to audio engineering. Their aim was to be a one-stop shop for local businesses or individuals who needed creative services. They still hold true to that original intention, but they have pivoted to focus their efforts on primarily heirloom quality furniture, custom fabrications for businesses, and art installations.

Jordan graduated from The Conservatory of the Recording Arts and Sciences with the goal of being a Mixing Engineer. After holding jobs at a multitude of recording studios, Guitar Center, and Fender Musical Instruments, it became clear that working for someone else wasn’t the best choice for his soul.

Thad Trubakoff graduated from Arizona State University with a Bachelor’s degree in Industrial Design Management and was hired as a prototyping technician. After a year of working for others, Thad decided to return to ASU to obtain a Master of Fine Arts in Woodworking. Thad completed his graduate program in the spring of 2015 and that’s when things really began to move. Within a month of Thad receiving his graduate degree they were commissioned on their first commercial restaurant built out.

Since then they’ve lived by the saying, “Good work, follows good work.” To elaborate, a job done right will always bring you more work.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
We’ve lost a business partner due to differing visions. We’ve stressed our personal and professional relationships. Jordan spent two years apart from his now Fiance as she attended out of state graduate school. Thad spends most of his weekends and nights in the shop. Thad and I shared a bedroom and I slept on the floor for months to make ends meet. We’ve wept, swore, and fought. There are sacrifices that are never apparent upfront. Being your own boss isn’t easy. You are required to be eternally disciplined and somewhat of a masochist.

It is always worth it.

Please tell us about TruCollective.
We specialize in heirloom quality furniture, commercial mill work packages, custom casework, and the occasional art piece. We can tackle just about any medium, aesthetic, or design intent. We thrive when elegant engineering is required and meld old world proven techniques with modern innovation. Our in-house design services provide each client with fully textured 3D renders and accurate construction documents before we make a single welding bead, an ounce of sawdust, or fire up the CNC.

We now employ 3 team members. That’s what probably makes us the most proud. These folks have children to feed, rent to pay, and futures to build. They trust Thad and I enough to invest their time and energy into building TruCollective. They don’t do it for free, but they certainly do it for more than just the money. It’s empowering and terrifying that folks depend on us to execute. Our team members are a lot of what drive us.

Do you look back particularly fondly on any memories from childhood?
Thad and I are brothers and were born and raised in Flagstaff, AZ. As brothers with 3 years between us, I would say most of my memories were of Thad “toughing me up”. That was never the language used, but anyone with an older brother or boys as children know the joys of them growing up together. I can say without a doubt Thad is now my best friend, but it didn’t begin that way. I have him to thank for the man I am today.

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