This year’s MHEDA Convention theme is “Passion With Purpose.” The 2016 Convention will be held in National Harbor, Maryland, just a stone’s throw from our nation’s capital. With that in mind, we asked MHEDA’s Board of Directors and MBOA members what they are passionate about in material handling. We also asked them who is on their “material handling Mount Rushmore.” See their responses and get to know this year’s Board and MBOA members as they prepare to help you in 2016.
MHEDA Chairman of the Board
President, Conveyor Solutions, Inc.
My number one passion in Material Handling is “Identifying issues and providing solutions”. If I could do nothing other than visit customers every day, identify issues within their operations, and work with them on implementing a solution to improve their business, I truly be able to focus on my passion.
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: I would like to provide specific names but, we would need a big mountain to carve all those faces. However, if you want to see a short list of the people I find remarkable, just grab any past issue of the MHEDA journal, flip through the pages, and you’ll find plenty of examples!
CEO, CMH Services
My biggest passion about material handling is the people I work with. Every day, I work with a team here at CMH Services that are dedicated, talented and focused. We set goals, definite strategies to reach those goals and celebrate together. It’s a lot of fun for me and a privilege to work with this team.
Material Handing Mount Rushmore: MHEDA
VP of Marketing & Sales, Fallsway Equipment Company
My biggest passion for material handling lies in understanding our customers’ businesses and applying the many products and services we offer to make their operations better. One of my favorite exercises is to take customers to other customers’ warehouses and factories to introduce them to best practices and products in our industry. I thoroughly enjoy educating our customer base and making introductions between companies’ personnel.
Material Handing Mount Rushmore: All of the technicians who make our industry run
MHEDA Vice Chairman
CFO, Liftech Equipment Companies
East Syracuse, NY
I love the people aspect of material handling. There is so much coordination of dependent events, so much teamwork that is necessary, so much opportunity to innovate and lead that interacting with employees and customers can be awesome and very rewarding. I love the concept that people define relationships.
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: Joe Verzino, Tim Hilton, Howard Bernstein
MHEDA Immediate Past Chairman
President, Lift Atlanta, Inc.
I really enjoy helping my people succeed. Although I am responsible for day-to-day operations of the company, I really see myself as a “support staff” for my people. No job is too big or too small, or beneath me in any way, to help my people meet their goals or win an order. I also really enjoy making sales calls with our Sales team. There’s just something about meeting with a customer or potential customer and helping them solve the flow of materials, or helping them reduce their costs that just makes you feel great. And when we win the order, it’s a great feeling.
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: Mitch Milovich, Donnie Norris, Joe Glowacki, Duncan Murphy
President, Mathand, Inc.
I am passionate about encouraging women to become involved in material handling. Logistics and supply chain are important career fields in the world. This can provide opportunities for women interested in a challenging career with a variety of specializations, as well as prospects for advancement.
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: Howard Bernstein, Tony Konstant, Liz Richards, Doug Buma
Vice President of Operations, Washington Liftruck
My enthusiasm and excitement for the industry is not about forklifts or material handling, it’s about people! As I tell our employees (some will tell you I preach it!) we’re not in the forklift business, we’re in the people business! I’ve been in the equipment business for 35 years and in the material business for 31 years. My tenure in this industry has been very fulfilling. This is not a glamorous industry but it’s an industry that provides one with a lot of satisfaction through working with people throughout the world and throughout all levels of organizations. You not only get the opportunity to work with great people in your own company but you also get the opportunity to meet others and develop great relationships with customers who in short order, become your friends. My passion is my coworkers, partners and friends in the industry! Thanks to those of you in the industry that are part of making this happen!
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: Sam Saleh, Doyle (Robbie) Robertson, Larry Silva, Nancy Smith
VP Lift Systems Division
Customer Satisfaction is my passion! A satisfied customer is the result of many dedicated dealership associates working together to deliver Superior Customer Service. Having dedicated dealership associates is a result of a company culture that says through words and actions that our associates are our most important asset. That culture perspective must start at the top of the company.
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: Richard Donnelly, Howard Bernstein, Greg Poole III, Chip Wiese
President, R.H. Brown Co.
My biggest passion about the material handling industry is the breath of industries served and the never ending challenges that come from applying material handling solutions to them.
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: Richard Larsen, Scott Lee, Greg Goodner, Jerry Danson
President, Nelson Equipment Company
Successfully implementing process solutions that provide increased value to our customer/partners bottom line. It never gets old helping businesses improve their financial and quality of life position. And better yet, it never ends. Continuous improvement provides opportunity for tomorrow.
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: Larry Abernathy, George Prest, Liz Richards, Mark Neuwirth
President, Advanced Equipment Company
My career prior to coming with Advanced Equipment Company was as a Special Projects Engineer. As such, I was fortunate to have the freedom to recommend and, if approved, execute facility improvement projects. Many of the projects involved material handling. At heart, I am still a project engineer and as such have a passion for material handling solution design and execution. I love it when one of our sales team comes to me to discuss opportunities and what the best solution design would be for that opportunity.
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: Larry Abernathy
People often ask me what I do for a living – and up until last year I would answer: “I work in the material handling industry.” Believe it or not, there are some people who actually know what that is, but most people do not, so I help them by adding: “We help our clients move their goods through their supply chains – you know, like logistics!” Usually, that is enough to get them to at least a “head nod” as a form of polite surrender and we move on to talk about what they do for a living. But after something that happened to me and my team about a year and a half ago – I no longer respond that way. Here’s how I respond: “I am in the business of saving lives!” One day, Liz Richards texted me that ALAN (the American Logistics Aid Network, www. alanaid.org) was trying to get medicine onto a cargo plane in Chicago to take it to West Africa to fight Ebola. They needed help getting it loaded and there was more medicine waiting for them in Charlotte. Once the medicine got to Africa, they needed a way to get it unloaded. I emailed a dealer in Chicago who was able to get a forklift to the airport to load the plane. We had a forklift from LiftOne waiting for when the plane touched down in Charlotte. A few hours later, the remaining medicine was loaded alongside the other pallets and prepared and secured inside the plane bound for Liberia. We drained, prepared and secured the foklift into the transport to bring to Africa. With the help of our network in Euro/Africa, the forklift was re-installed in Liberia and the plane was unloaded and the medicine was dispatched to its patients across the countryside. When people ask me if I am passionate about my work, I tell them this story. We are in the business of impacting lives every day and on some days, saving them.
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: Howard Bernstein, Gary Thompson, Tim Hilton
President, Springer Equipment
There are many passions that you can have after a lifetime in the material handling business, my biggest passion about material handling is “getting it right!” We have a professional and moral responsibility to our customers to supply the safest, most productive and highest quality goods and services money can buy. In the “price sells” world that we live in we have to ask many questions and listen closely to what buyers not just want, but also need in order for them to be successful in their partnerships with us! Not just everyone gets it right today, those who remain passionate about material handling will get it right!
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: Howard Bernstein, Newton “Newt” R. Brungart, Walter C. Baker, “Joe Technician”
President, Container Systems Inc.
My biggest passion in material handling is seeing customers we started with 20 years ago become more and more successful and knowing that we helped contribute to their success.
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: Bob Wall, Roger Jaeger, Chuck Keene, Bill McCarthy
President, Pape Material Handling
Being able to show an fellow member or client how to solve a material handling problem. This entails seamlessly integrating the storage and conveyance system with the right fork truck. So the thrill is making a difference by making someone better.
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: Dave Salman, Joe Verzino
MHEDA Advisory Board
President, Elite Supply Chain Solutions
I am not passionate about Material Handling, I am passionate about helping clients achieve their business goals with Material Handling Solutions. My passion has evolved over time from being someone who provided or sold Material Handling equipment and being passionate about the sale, to understanding how to use Material Handling Solutions to help clients and being passionate about helping them achieve their goals.
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: Tom Loberg, Howard Bernstein, Charlie Mauer, Robert Braun
MHEDA Advisory Board
President, Wisconsin Lift Truck Corp.
Material handling distribution is undergoing rapid and dynamic change. There are new products being introduced, more engineered systems being sold and consolidations of both suppliers and distributors. The scale of distributors is growing in both the breadth of business and the size and scope of business. My passion today is in expanding our business through acquisitions and integration of new technology. My passion is to create the distributor of the future by combining the resources of our company with the companies we acquire. We have acquired six businesses in the last five years and have also implemented new business systems, CRM, GPS, and are implementing field service automation.
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: Howard Bernstein
MEET THE MBOA
VP/GM Motive Power Sales, East Penn Manufacturing
Lyon Station, PA
Passion is driven by both the opportunities and challenges we face in the Material Handling Industry. Also, I have been very fortunate to have been associated with so many talented people in the industry over the years. People create the passion and make the difference.
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: : DeLight E. Breidegam, Sally Breidegam Miksiewicz
President, Thombert, Inc.
What I am passionate about concerning materials handling is that it is so important to our economy and world commerce, yet is out of the view of the general public. I appreciate being part of an interesting, challenging and evolving industry that most people never give a second thought to. Of course, it is also one of our challenges to better tell our industry story so that we can continue to attract great people to the industry.
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: George Raymond, Sr., Howard Bernstein, CLARK, The Dicke Family
VP of Sales, WireCrafters, LLC
My biggest passion about Material Handling is actually a combination of two things; Building relationships and finding solutions. For my 35 years at WireCrafters, I have been fortunate to work with some great people and help them help their customers.
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: George Prest, Liz Richards, Howard Bernstein, John Nofsinger
President & CEO, Toyota Material Handling North America
I am passionate about providing customers with solutions to their material handling needs. As a former engineer, problem solving is always exciting to me. When we can sit down with a customer, review their application needs and then propose a solution that enables them to be more productive and efficient, that is a very rewarding experience for me.
Material Handling Mount Rushmore: Howard Bernstein, George Raymond, Shankar Basu, Bill Montweiler