George Connelly and his wife Nora founded Saint Louis Electric Supply in the late 1940's. They ran a "hot shot" electrical supply delivery business. George would get an order and hop into his pickup truck to deliver the supplies to electricians who needed material fast to their job site. Quick, reliable service they boasted. They ran St. Louis Electric Supply out of their basement and garage for over twenty years. In 1967, George had a stroke and made the difficult decision to put his business up for sale.

     John Frisella, Sr. was an electrical contractor and encouraged his son, Jim Frisella, and his brother-in-law, Charlie Gagnepain, to purchase St. Louis Electrical Supply from George in 1967. With a loan from John Frisella, Sr., Jim and Charlie bought the business and Metro Electric Supply was born.

     Fresh out of college in 1971, Jim's bother Bill Frisella joined forces and helped build the customer base and opened satellite locations. Originally, METRO was strictly an electrical supply house but in 1978, METRO purchased an electrical distributor that also had a small 2500 square foot lighting showroom. This was the beginning of METRO Lighting. When Charlie and Jim later decided to call it quits, in 1985 and 1999, respectfully, Bill purchased their shares and owns and manages the company to this day.

     Bill Frisella is the first to acknowledge that his success is due to METRO's great staff of employees. Along with METRO'S executive vice-president, Barb Moynihan (behind every man there is a great woman), and its CFO, Brett Vollrath, his electrical staff is headed by the general manager of METRO Electric Supply, Tim McDonnell. Tim, like his father before him, has been a dedicated employee now for over 25 years. His father, Mike, worked for METRO as a branch manager, sales manager and general manager while mentoring son Tim for over 20 years. Tim's wife, Sam, is also the manager of METRO's "ARTS" award-winning flagship showroom. Included in the electrical management team is sales manager Jerry Donovan. Jerry has been a member of the team since the late 70's and adds experience to his mostly younger and aggressive sales force.

     The lighting team is headed by METRO Lighting's General Manager Matt Gagnepain. Matt's father, Charlie, is one of the founders of the company. Matt was originally a pipe and wire man but his eye for design and his creativity steered him over to the lighting side of the business. In addition, Bill's brother, Paul Frisella, is the sales manager of METRO Lighting. Paul's team is staffed with a number of gifted professionals including Michael Craft and Will Jackson. Bill thinks that these are two of the finest lighting designers in the country.

     In 2011 METRO opened a new state of the art electrical supply location and also a very elegant lighting showroom. They are located in Chesterfield Valley and both have exceeded early projections. Together, METRO Electric Supply and METRO Lighting have 17 locations. Terri Kunst, daughter of founder Jim Frisella, manages inventory and personnel at all locations in her role as branch coordinator.

     Bill feels that the company's lasting success is first and foremost customer service. Like the original Connelly's bragged over 45 years ago, there is a true focus on customer service at both METRO Electric Supply and METRO Lighting. And just like the Connelly's, METRO still makes deliveries to electricians (and builders) on the job that need their material fast. In fact, METRO makes over 100 deliveries each and every day to the greater St. Louis metropolitan area and Cape Girardeau. This includes "hot shot" deliveries just like the old days.

     METRO'S marketing and advertising department was established in 1978 to help promote the newly acquired lighting showroom. Since that time it has been much improved and sophisticated under the direction of first, Barb Moynihan, and now Sarah King. Sarah is a graduate of Tulane University and the daughter of President Bill Frisella. METRO'S advertising and marketing department now ranks extraordinarily high in their metropolitan area receiving many awards and acknowledgements through the efforts of Sarah King. Play Ball. Yes, METRO Electric Supply sponsors Cardinal baseball among many other high profile events in Saint Louis.

     METRO's commitment to the environment is not smoke and mirrors, or a green washing effort. We have been ahead of the curve in this area by educating our employees about energy efficient lighting and controls. Our staff is very knowledgeable when it comes to CFL and LED products. Bill's son, Nicholas, a graduate of the Chicago Art Institute, is very involved and motivated in the GREEN initiative and through his efforts METRO has won the Department of Energy and EPA's national ENERGY STAR Award for "Excellence in Retailing" in 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014, and 2015. Metro also won the coveted ENERGY STAR award for “Climate Communicator” in 2015. This allowed William, Matt, and Nick a chance to visit the White House, and meet senior Missouri senator Claire McCaskill while in DC for the awards banquets. In addition, to many energy fairs and promotions that they attend, METRO is part of the St. Louis area's utility provider, AMEREN Missouri's, energy partnership. METRO installed a solar awning at our Chesterfield showroom and also sells solar panels and accessories. Along with solar, they are also promoting electric vehicle chargers (EV chargers) through car dealerships and have gone so far as to purchase an all American made Nissan Leaf to let their customers know they are serious about energy efficiency and promoting energy efficient products. METRO offers free public EV charging stations at our Brentwood and Chesterfield locations.