Jason Treichel was just 22 years old when he decided to start his own business cutting stone countertops. A self-taught man, he had the expertise – just not the revenue.

“The only thing I had of value was my ’69 Chevelle, which I lived for and raced at the drag strip often,” said Treichel, now 50. “My buddies thought I was nuts, but I sold the car and used the money to buy my very first stone saw.”

Today – 27 years later – Treichel’s company, Stone Specialists, Inc., is still rock solid.

“I’ve always enjoyed working with my hands and still find stone as intriguing to me today as it was back then,” he said.

Headquartered at 4217 Davison Road in Burton, Stone Specialists offers customers an array of granite, marble, quartz, porcelain, and soapstone products. Their showroom offers selection and idea centers, educational displays, and even a kids quarry to keep the little ones occupied.

The company is focused on providing and installing quality products at competitive prices.

A collage of images. Starting from left are slabs of granite inside a warehouse. Top right is a white kitchen with a marble-topped island. Right bottom is a large bathtub with a marble surround.

“The majority of our business is kitchen countertops and bathroom countertops,” said Treichel, company president and owner. “But we also do slabs on shower walls, wall caps, thresholds, windowsills – anywhere in a home or business where somebody might want to add a classic accent.”

Stone Specialists employs about 25 people, including multiple relatives. All his employees, though, are like family.

“I run the company, but it’s really our employees who deserve the spotlight,” said the Swartz Creek native. “We have very little turnover and, in fact, have quite a few employees who have been here for decades.”

Not only does Stone Specialists offer competitive wages and benefits, Treichel says he does his best to lead with compassion and provide a good working environment.

An employee wears a denim apron, ear over his hoodie, ear muffs and glasses while he buffs a cut slab of granite. In the image to its right, a worker operates a computer that controls the saw cutting a sheet of granite.
Scenes inside Stone Specialists, Inc.

“I try to put myself in my employees’ shoes and that drives a lot of my decisions here every day,” he said. “I instill responsibility and I think when an employee has responsibilities that it instills a little bit of ownership, too.”

While most of its customers are in Genesee County, Stone Specialists serves clients across the state. The company opened a second location a decade ago in Midland that primarily serves as a showroom.

According to Treichel, each stone variety has its own appeal. In the company’s nearly 30 years, they’ve seen home décor styles shift. When Treichel started the business, granite countertops were all the rage. Today about 70 percent of their market is quartz, which provides a durable countertop surface.

Countertops with predominantly white or creamy backgrounds with bold veining are especially popular.
“It’s just like any household item; there’s trendy patterns and colors that people tend to decorate with and right now it’s quartz,” he said.

Collage of photos. Left is a row of white quartz slabs. Middle is an up close shot of a computer operated saw that cuts small pieces of granite. Right image is a large metal statue sitting on top of a large granite slab.
Left and center: Scenes inside Stone Specialists, Inc. Right: The company’s products can be found in prominent projects throughout Genesee County, including the 9/11 memorial at Mott Community College.

Treichel purchases stone from locations around the world with some slabs weighing as much as 1,500 pounds. Artisans in the shop cut the stone to the appropriate sizes for installation.

“Our installers will show up to a house with several pieces of finished kitchen countertop weighing 50 to 600 pounds each,” he said. “At the end of the day, it still comes down to strong men with really good backs putting these countertops in – and our guys do a great job.”

Treichel says he envisions continued growth for Stone Specialists … but not too much.

“My focus is taking care of the customer and making sure we are competitive,” he said.

Treichel enjoys doing business in Genesee County and appreciates its centralized location.

“This area really has so many resources and suppliers when you’re running a company and they’re right here at our fingertips,” he said.

Treichel said he still loves working with stone and doesn’t regret selling his precious Chevelle all those years ago.

“This business has been able to provide for my family,” he said. “My hot rod wouldn’t have been able to do that – although perhaps a new one will be in my future!”