founded on a reputation of
quality & trust

Our History1940 – C. Allen Harlan

C. Allen Harlan founded Harlan Electric in Detroit, Michigan promising customers stability, integrity, and energy. The company quickly earned an enviable reputation for quality construction and value engineering expanding into Flint and Saginaw.

1940s – Supporting Wartime Efforts

When the 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor thrust the country into World War II, Harlan Electric was awarded a contract with the American Propeller Corporation to perform the electrical scope for a new facility to support the wartime effort. Harlan also supplied the electrical construction for the G.M. Foundry in Defiance, Ohio. 

1950s – Innovation and New Markets

Always innovative, C. Allen Harlan developed a trolley that could ride the joists above a factory work area. The trolley was created for the Hudson Arsenal renovation at Nine Mile and Mound Road in Michigan. The plant was so large that a great deal of time would have been lost moving ladders, raising materials to the workers, and climbing up and down. Harlan voluntarily returned the $500,000 efficiency savings to the Navy. 

Harlan continued to expand, acquiring Electric Construction & Machinery Company to develop markets in line construction and expressway work. A new office opened in Toledo supporting a joint venture on the Ford Motor plant.

1960s – The Soaring Sixties

Harlan Electric acquired Power Piping Company in 1963 leading to a major renovation project of the Hot Strip Mill at Ford Steel and a large engineering facility for General Motors. The line division, operating as Electric Construction & Machinery Company, was renamed Harlan Electrical Construction Company and Beacon Electric of Buffalo, New York was acquired. C. Allen phased out of day-to-day operations as his son, John Harlan, took over as president. Accommodating growth, the company relocated to larger offices in Southfield, Michigan. 

1970s – Unprecedented Growth

In 1974 Harlan Electric merged with Titan Electric Company of Indianapolis and Sturgeon Electric Company of Denver, expanding the company’s capabilities across America’s Heartland. Power Piping added a second fabrication shop to accommodate demand. Detroit operations expanded with major projects, Town Center-Phase I and Chrysler Metal Stamping. In 1975, they established emergency services to handle power failures and loss of critical electrical systems.

1990s – 50 Years Strong and Growing

In 1990, the Company celebrated 50 years in business, earning its reputation as an industry-leading high-voltage electrical contractor throughout the upper midwestern and northeastern U.S. In the early 1990s, Harlan Electric and Sturgeon Electric were acquired by L.E. Myers supporting their desire to expand operationally and geographically.  

In 1995, MYR Group Inc. was established as the holding company of L.E. Myers, Sturgeon Electric, and Harlan Electric and grew to one of the largest holding companies of specialty electrical contractors in the U.S. and Canada.

2000s – Northeast Utility Growth

Harlan Electric was awarded its first contractor of choice agreement with National Grid in 2005.  This opportunity was the catalyst for establishing a steady and lasting presence in the Northeast. To accommodate growth, the mid-Atlantic regional headquarters relocated to Harrisburg, PA in 2014 and the northeast region to Windham, NH in 2019. The expanded regional facilities provide the necessary resources to serve the growing markets.

2020s – Live Line Market Expansion

Partnering with industry leaders and safety professionals, Harlan Electric developed a bare hand transmission certification program providing clients full-service energized transmission line offerings with an emphasis on safety.

Today and Tomorrow

As a premier member of the MYR Group, we have the financial, managerial, labor, and equipment expertise and resources to successfully complete electrical installations of any type and size throughout the upper midwestern and northeastern U.S. 

We are committed to positively impacting the world around us while partnering with our clients to deliver sustainable solutions. We have an inherent obligation to strive for top-tier environmental and social practices that affect the communities where we live and serve. By emphasizing our critical role in the clean energy transformation, we contribute to a more sustainable future for all.