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The following article originally appeared in The Union Newspaper on February 17, 2014:

Don Adams helps local TV viewers tune in

By Cory Fisher

Sales technician Bill Thaggard (left) and owner Don Adams. Photo by Cory Fisher, The Union Newspaper

Sales technician Bill Thaggard (left) and owner Don Adams. Photo by Cory Fisher, The Union Newspaper

Back in 1980, Don Adams left his job working in cable television and decided to start a business of his own. At the time, no one in town was installing antennas for televisions, so Adams quickly found a niche.

He started with rooftops, then began putting them up in trees. Five years later, Adams had already built up a loyal customer base when satellite dishes began to revolutionize the home television viewing experience. That’s about the time Don Adams Antenna Services became Don Adams Antenna Satellite Services.

Because it was one of the first businesses in Northern California to sell satellite equipment, initially Adams’ territory extended way out to the coast, up to Tahoe and toward Redding, said Adams, who found himself on the road nonstop.

Since the mid-1980s, the business has continued to be the one-stop shop for satellite television. Not only are they Dish Network and DIRECTV dealers, they provide the same services as what Adams now refers to as “the 800 numbers” — the large companies known to keep customers on hold for what feels like an eternity.

“When you call an 800 number for satellite service, chances are you’ll reach a telemarketer who is contracted with a big company out of the area who will send someone up here,” he said.

“We recommend you call here instead of talking to someone in the Philippines. We can help with all of your issues, and we’re right here in town, on call, if you have concerns. It’s been hard to get the word out when these larger companies constantly send out mass mailings and fliers.”

Whether it’s an entirely new installation or an upgrade to an existing system, Adams goes on as many as six calls a day, he said. He will provide upgrades to existing Dish Network customers, even if he didn’t install their current system.

“Word of mouth has absolutely been the best advertising,” said Don Adams. “We’ve been voted ‘Best of Nevada County’ (by The Union readers) every year since we opened.”

Adams has two longtime employees, sales technician Bill Thaggard and office manager Maryann Rutherford. A broad range of equipment, including televisions, are for sale at the Joerschke Drive establishment. Their prices are comparable to those at larger retail stores, and the staff, said Adams, is committed to staying abreast of current technological advances, which is something their 4,000-plus customers appreciate.

“Don has been a wonderful boss,” said Thaggard, who has worked with Adams for six years. “I think we both feel that the best part of the job has been getting to know the clientele.”

Adams said the company is committed to giving back to the community, which is why each year they participate in the Toy Run and donate to the Nevada Union football team. Proceeds from their e-waste go exclusively to the schools.

“What’s been the most rewarding after all these years is that our customers keep coming back,” said Adams. “That’s a real vote of confidence; that means a lot.”

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