How did you get into engineering or fluid power specifically?
I stumbled into hydraulics right out of high school when I started working for Daman Products. My experience at Daman help me decided to go to college for mechanical engineering. I was not truly bitten by the hydraulic bug until I returned to Daman and started working in the engineering department where I found hydraulic circuits to be a source of inspiring challenge. There’s always more to learn and discover the deeper you get.
What do you think is the biggest challenge facing engineers today?
I believe that social media has created some unintended consequences for engineers today. Young engineers seem to be looking for the problems with quick solutions. And they are very good at solving them quickly so they can move on to the next project. When it comes to solving complex customer needs they tend to loss interest and migrate to immediate satisfaction projects. I think they are extremely outgoing and gregarious but their personality profiles require quick navigation from project to project to satisfy their outstanding abilities to multitask. Sitting down to collaborate over a complicated hydraulic circuit makes their skin crawl.
What is the biggest misconception about fluid power?
Fluid power on the surface seems boring. I think people need to gain a basic understanding of hydraulic circuits and fluid power concepts before they really appreciate how exciting and truly powerful it is.
What do you think has been the biggest development in fluid power technology over the past five years?
Mobile: GPS technology, touch screens and intelligent feedback is just beginning to lend their benefits to Fluid Power applications. Industrial: Fluid cleanliness and component reliability work being done at MSOE will have huge benefits for HPU design.
Do you think engineers get enough respect in today’s world?
I do. A good engineer today can work at any level of the organization he or she desires. An engineering degree provides a foundation for every core competency required in today’s diverse business environment. Today’s engineer is not the narrowly focused problem solver of yesteryear.
Would you encourage your kids or grandkids to pursue an engineering career?
Absolutely. First choice after Theoretical Physicist.
If you could no longer be an engineer, what other career path would you follow?
I love everything about sales and sales management.
What is the coolest project you’ve ever worked on in your career?
I work on a new one every single day. The coolness is present in every project that I can bring value and direction to. Love it!!!