Since 1984, University Painters has proudly provided Ottawa and the surrounding area with professional, award-winning interior and exterior painting services.
Locally Owned & Operated
We're not a franchise; we're locally owned and operated. The current owner is James Cleary who founded University Painters in 1984 as a summer business while attending Carleton University. After graduating from Carleton in 1987 with a B.A. in law, Mr. Cleary expanded the business to year round service. With Mr. Cleary's attention to details and excellent customer service, the operation grew from $30,000 in annual sales to over $1,000,000. During this growth phase, University Painters began doing commercial jobs and hiring full time professional painters became the norm.
The current general manager, and future owner, is Jimmy Cleary. Jimmy has worked in the construction sector since 2012. Jimmy graduated from Ottawa University in 2011 with a B.A. in economics. Prior to University, he went to French schools. Jimmy has shadowed his father to learn hands on every aspect of sales, customer service, administration, management, and finance. Jimmy's formal work history started at age 14 when he started a service business on the Big Rideau Lake doing yard work and odd jobs for lake residents. This enterprise taught him about marketing, time management, customer service, and business basics. Jimmy then migrated to full time summer employment with Parks Canada working at the lock station on the Big Rideau for 7 summers. This endeavour included dealing with the public in both official languages on a daily basis. One summer Jimmy saved a man's life who had driven his car into the water beside the lock station. Jimmy jumped into action by diving into the water, attempting to open the car which was locked, and broke the window to extract the drowning man. As a result Jimmy was presented with the following three awards: Parks Canada CEO Award of Excellence, Smith Falls Mayor, and The Police Services Board Accommodation and sincere appreciation, and The Most Venerable Order of St-John of Jerusalem Lifesaving Commendation award.
In the spring of 2021, to keep up with increasing demand due to the rapid growth & popularity of University Painters, we were very fortunate to bring onto our team another manager, family friend, and future co-owner, Will Grace. James Cleary and Will's father have been friends since their childhood and have both made their careers in the painting industry. Will is a very ambitious and motivated individual, ready to service our clients needs. Will has gained lots of sales experience working at Best Buy for 5 years. He is going to be putting his sales experience and quality customer service skills to good use here at University Painters. Will is now fully trained with estimating and is eager to continue meeting with potential clients to provide them with our free quotes. Before joining our team, Will had worked for the Government Of Canada gaining many useful skills in dealing with technology and team work. Will has proven to be a great addition to the University Painters team.