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Frank, doug, and elsie

Birnam Excavating Ltd. was established in 1973 by our founders Frank and Elsie Van Bree. We have seen considerable growth from decade to decade. Brinam expanded from municipal it’s history in drainage and became a well sought after company for our ability to work efficiently in difficult and complicated situations. We specialize in solutions in the quicksand and swamp drainage industry. In the mid 80’s, an eager and ambitious son Mark and his wife Teresa came on board and Birnam quickly expanded into the sewer, watermain and road building industry. Thanks to our founders, Frank and Elsie, a strong foundation was formed at Birnam.

Teresa & Mark

With the second generation, Mark and Teresa taking the helm over in 19__,  Birnam has continued to grow from 5 employees to over 70!  Together Teresa and Mark transitioned the business focus into the sewer, watermain and road building industry and have built a strong reputation in the field.

Mark & Teresa
Birnam employees gathered for group photo

Birnam’s growth and expansion continues with all five owners who offer a unique take on the industry and recognize the value of their team, understanding that the foundation of a great company lies in its employees. Through the ongoing mentorship and training of their employees they will continue to meet the challenges and demands of this thriving and ever changing industry. Birnam is dedicated to Building Today for a Stronger Tomorrow.

VanBree Family
VanBree Family

Our 3rd generation – brothers, Kevin and Bryan Van Bree and, brother-in-law, Phil Coeck are committed to Birnam’s growth, development and continued success. Through steady progress, Birnam has grown from a staff of 5 to over 70.

Kevin, Bryan and Phil are dedicated to continuing to making a positive impact on the industry, through service on a variety of different industry related boards (LDHCA, OSWCA Young Executives Committee) as well as community organizations.

kids in front of dozer

Owner Profiles

Teresa in her office


As a 2nd generation Owner and integral part of Birnam,  Teresa has served as the CFO and Controller of Birnam for the past 35 years.  Not ready to retire yet as her husband steps down – she will continue in her role as CFO overseeing the Finance Department and assisting to transfer her role in HR, H&S and Administration to new team members as the team transitions and grows. Her extensive and diverse experience includes a diploma from Lambton College , as well as many post-secondary financial and business courses.  For almost 20 years she sat on the Branch Council for a local financial institution many as Chair, which was an opportunity to both give back and learn strong business and financial

VanBree Family


Bryan has taken on the role of CEO of Birnam.  He is both excited and nervous to fill these big shoes as he steps up to lead the team at Birnam.  He holds a Technology Bachelor’s Degree in Technology and a diploma in Electronics Engineering Technology from RCC Institute, 2008. He is tasked with overseeing all business operations of Birnam.  Working closely with the various Team Managers as well as continuing his role of Sr. Project Manager and Sr. Estimator as he builds these teams.

VanBree Family


Kevin has stepped up to the position of Chief Operations Officer.  He is tasked with overseeing the management of our Field Construction Operations as well as our equipment, fleet and service departments.   His focus will be on our people, our equipment, safety and service.  He brings his expertise in efficiency methodologies, training, trouble shooting and field and asset management.  Kevin earned a Diploma in Construction Engineering Technology Management from Fanshawe College in 2006 and also has earned his Safety Officer Designation.

VanBree Family

PHIL COECK – General Manager of General Contracting

As our General Manager of our General Contracting Division, Phil manages sales, estimating, project management and sit supervision for this emerging division of Birnam.  Phil came to Birnam in 2016 as Project Manager to build and manage a more focused presence in the General Contracting Industry.  Phil obtained his diploma in ______ from Fanshawe and is a Red Seal Certified Sheet Metal worker.

VanBree Family

MARK VAN BREE – President 

After a 45 year career at Birnam, Mark Van Bree has decided to step down as CEO.  Mark will continue his role as President of Birnam and be there for the Company in an advisor/consultant role.

Mark will continue to pursue his passion of Industry Relations as he enjoys his retirement.  For the past few decades Mark had been at the forefront of industry change and influence, notably serving as the 2012 President of the Ontario Sewer & Watermain Association (OSWCA).  Mark will continue his role as a member of the Sarnia Heavy Construction Association, the OSWCA Board of Directors as well on the Canadian Construction Association ( CCA) Civil Infrastructure Council and Advisory Boards.

Collage of truck photos
Kids posing in the bucket of a front loader