Robison Oil trucks, with their familiar RobiDog mascot, are a ubiquitous sight on roadways throughout Westchester and Putnam counties. Now celebrating its 100th anniversary, Robison has come a long way since first opening up in 1921 as a family-run business with a gas station and auto parts store in Hartsdale.
The Singer family, owners of Original Oil since 1928, bought Robison in 1984, and today the company has 200 employees and over 20,000 clients. Robison prides itself in a wide range of services, from supplying natural gas and electricity to delivering clean-burning biofuel. It also services and installs all types of heating and air conditioning products, offers 24/7 plumbing services, and solves indoor air quality issues.
According to Robison Co-President David Singer, who is the third generation in his family to run the company, along with his brother Daniel Singer, the growth of Robison is a result of its commitment to keeping up with the times and meeting ever-changing customer needs.
“Essentially, our company has evolved from the very beginning,” says Singer. “In the 1930s and ’40s, people started converting from coal to oil, which was a much better way to heat homes and businesses, and that’s how we first evolved into a heating oil company.”
Robison remains committed to diversifying and growing with the market’s demands. “We’re constantly listening to our customers, looking for ways to stay relevant and in their lives – and in their businesses and their homes, “Singer says. “The company is continually looking to modernize and to train our technicians on new technology, from heating oil to biofuel, natural gas, and electric fuel.”
“Every home we touch, we make energy efficient.”
Moving into green energy has been another important step. Robison’s electricity supply is one hundred percent green, sourced from a hydroelectric plant in upstate New York. In addition, the company offers non-sulfur, biofuel oil products that are the closest to natural gas in carbon output. “Every home we touch, we make energy efficient,” says Singer.
About five years ago, the company got into indoor air quality systems, to address asthma, allergies, and pet dander. “Now with the Covid pandemic, this is no longer a luxury item.” The service has been in high demand from offices, shops, and restaurants.
The Singer brothers also devote a great deal of time to giving back to the community, having been inspired by their father Saul Singer, who recently passed away. The elder Singer was a significant contributor to the betterment of Jewish life and culture in Westchester, as well as a supporter of White Plains Hospital and dozens of other local charities.
David is on the Board of the Boys & Girls Club of Northern Westchester, chairman of the Westchester-Putnam Workforce Investment Board, and active in fundraising for the Northern Westchester Hospital. Daniel is on the board of Feeding Westchester, a past president of Congregation Sons of Israel in Briarcliff, and serves on the board of a number of Jewish organizations.
“My dad was an old school, hard worker who led by example,” Singer says. “He wasn’t the coach of the team; he was the captain of the team… He worked harder and longer than everyone else, putting in more time to his charities and giving them extra money… My brother and I both grew up in that environment, which was very hands-on, and to some degree, we run the company and contribute to the community in the same way.”
Laura Joseph Mogil is a freelance writer residing in Briarcliff Manor, NY.