David A. Cunningham is the Executive Chairman of Hugh M. Cunningham Companies (HMC). The Dallas based rep agency, founded by his father, is now one of the largest independent manufacturers’ representatives in the country. Hugh M. Cunningham Companies is focused on one overriding corporate mission; marketing, selling, and service. The agency's founder and namesake, Hugh M. Cunningham, was David's father, and one of the key influences in his life. Perhaps Hugh Cunningham's greatest contribution was his sense of pride, which he passed on to his son, the second generation owner/manager of the company. David grew up doing odd jobs around the company's office and at the family ranch. From sixth grade on, David's dream was to work for his father. David believes that his father would be very pleased with where the business is today.
In 1986, the agency's first move, outside of residential plumbing, was to concentrate on selling commercial plumbing products under the name PlumbingMechanicalGroup. In 1991, the agency decided to start up a waterworks division to further diversify sales and marketing efforts. The FlowControlGroup was launched. In 2000, the agency once again diversified when they entered the fire protection, turf, agriculture, and waterwell business with the FireWaterGroup. In 2003, the company expanded again into the HVAC marketplace and created the HVACGroup. The OklahomaGroup was also created in 2003 that reintroduced HMC to the Oklahoma market. HMC continued its expansion into the neighboring states of Texas with New Mexico’s SandiaGroup in 2006, LouisianaGroup in 2008, ArkansasGroup in 2009, and MississippiGroup in 2020.
The agency employs over 145 people, with 39 sales people, serving their multiple markets. In 2014, HMC moved into its current, Dallas based, 150,000 square foot office and warehouse facility. “The Beehive,” as it is fondly referred to by the HMC associates, has positively and dynamically impacted sales and marketing, training, distribution service, and support. Some of the many wonderful features of the Beehive include conference rooms with video conference capabilities, full kitchen and lunchroom for guests and employees, and a state-of-the-art training facility (also known as HughU). HMC also has two annex warehouses in Houston and San Antonio offering same-day pickup.
David Cunningham is a man with a vision and the ability to look outside of the box for opportunities to grow the business. He is always willing to empower his team and give them the resources they need to grow the business, but he realizes that no matter how high-tech the business world gets, and he's made a significant investment in all of these tools, it still comes down to relationships. David is quoted as saying friends like to buy from friends and so he is diligent about facilitating those relationships during business hours and beyond.
David’s most notable traits include his zest for life, dedication to the business, and his emotion when talking about his father's legacy and his family.