Our History

A Tradition of Excellence

In 1895, Portland, Oregon was a fast-growing port town with a booming commercial industry and a population that had grown from 17,500 to over 100,000 in just 15 years. Mr. Harry Cress and his friend Mr. Timms looked at the still-growing town, and saw an opportunity. More and more buildings were being built every day to accommodate the growth, and paint was in short supply. Cress and Timms launched “Timms, Cress, & Co.” that year; providing paint and paint supplies to meet Portland’s construction needs.

Following in his father’s footsteps, Warren Cress joined the company after graduating from the University of Oregon in 1933. As Portland continued to grow, so did the company, which  expanded its product line to include office equipment, lockers, and chairs. By the end of the year,  the company was renamed, and WH Cress Company, Inc became one of the leading commercial building supply companies in the Pacific Northwest.


In 1972 Warren Cress’ son Scott joined the company, and became its President in 1975. He’s continued to serve in that capacity for more than 40 years, and has steered the growth and success of the company. Over the past four decades, WH Cress Company, Inc has evolved from a manufacturer’s rep. business to a renowned distributor and subcontractor of building specialty products. Scott’s daughter Kelly Cress joined the company in 1997 and represents the fourth generation of Cress family leadership.

The WH Cress Company, Inc was founded on excellence, quality of service, and superior quality. Over 100 years and four generations later, that tradition continues and WH Cress Company, Inc remains a leader and trusted name in the building material supply industry.