A Few Words

About Me

3 decades of mastery

A Journey as a Plastics Engineer

In the dynamic and ever-evolving world of plastics, a 30-year journey is a remarkable odyssey, marked by diverse experiences and significant accomplishments. This is the story of a career that began with a passion for plastics, nurtured at Ferris State University, and blossomed into a wealth of expertise encompassing both custom injection molding and the resin/compounding industry. As I reflect on my journey, I can't help but marvel at the exciting twists and turns that led me to establish The Plastics Doctor, my consulting and training business, poised to share my wealth of knowledge and experience with others in the industry.

My journey began at Ferris State University, where I embarked on a quest to unravel the mysteries of plastics. Here, I received a comprehensive education in the field, equipping me with a solid academic foundation. Little did I know that this would be the springboard for a career that would span three decades and touch most facets of the plastics industry.

The First Half of My Career - Custom Injection Molding

The first half of my career saw me immersing myself in the world of custom injection molding. This was a period of unparalleled growth and learning, where I wore various hats and assumed diverse roles that allowed me to understand the industry from the ground up.

I began as an operator and material handler, gaining hands-on experience with molding machinery and understanding the fundamentals of material handling, which are the bedrock of the plastics industry. Progressing from an operator role, I took on the role of a set-up technician, which introduced me to the intricacies of mold setup and machine configuration, ensuring that operations ran smoothly and efficiently. Stepping into the role of a process technician, I gained insights into the technical aspects of setting up injection molding work cells. The role of an estimator taught me the intricacies of project costing, a skill that would prove invaluable throughout my career. Accurate cost analysis and project evaluation became my forte.

Then I earned a position as a process engineer, I was tasked with ensuring that new products made a successful transition into production. This responsibility entailed a deep understanding of scientific molding principles, filling analysis, and problem-solving techniques, all of which were instrumental in guaranteeing a smooth production process. During this phase, I was also part of troubleshooting teams, addressing a myriad of production-related issues that ranged from defects in molded parts to optimizing cycle times and process parameters. This exposure to real-world manufacturing challenges gave me a holistic understanding of the injection molding process and honed my ability to apply scientific principles to practical problem-solving.

My journey into design engineering was a significant turning point, allowing me to actively contribute to product and mold development. It was during this phase that I started to comprehend the art and science of designing molds and products that met the industry's stringent standards SPI mold classification standards.

Taking on the role of a project engineer, I managed end-to-end projects, ensuring that they were executed seamlessly and met the client's expectations. This required effective coordination of cross-functional teams, communication, and project management skills.

The Second Half of My Career - Resin/Compounding Industry

The second phase of my career opened new doors into the resin/compounding industry, a segment that complements and enriches the broader plastics field. This was a phase characterized by diversification, extensive travel, and the development of expertise in thermoplastic materials and compounds.

In the role of a field technical service engineer, I provided on-site technical support and troubleshooting assistance to customers in various industries. This allowed me to develop a deep understanding of resin properties, their applications, and the intricacies of problem-solving in the field.

Transitioning into a technical sales engineer role, I applied my technical expertise to assist customers in selecting the right resin or compound for their specific requirements. This role necessitated a delicate balance between technical knowledge and effective communication, understanding customer needs, and matching them with the right materials.

The role of a business development manager brought strategic insights and expansion. I worked on expanding our customer base, identifying new markets, and enhancing relationships with existing clients, contributing to the growth and development of the business. The primary areas of focus were metal to plastics, glass to plastic, paint elimination, and part consolidation.

As an account manager, I was responsible for nurturing long-term partnerships with key customers, ensuring their satisfaction and addressing any technical or operational challenges. This role was about building trust, delivering results, contracting, and ensuring the continued success of our clients and shareholder value.

Throughout this phase of my career, I had the opportunity to delve into the world of thermoplastic materials and compounds, each with unique properties and applications. Extensive travel became a cornerstone of this chapter, with visits to thousands of manufacturing facilities and design centers across different regions, including the USMCA, Central America, Europe, and Japan. These experiences offered a glimpse into global manufacturing practices, experience in all market segments, and the diverse needs of clients across all industries.

As I look ahead to the next chapter of my career, I am excited to announce the launch of The Plastics Doctor, my consulting, injection molding simulation, plastic engineering training services. This endeavor represents the culmination of a career dedicated to plastics engineering and a commitment to giving back to the industry that has provided me with so much. I will be partnering with Torsten Kruse of Kruse Analysis and Kruse Training as a key resource for injection molding simulation, training, and seminars.

The Plastics Doctor is here to offer solutions, share knowledge, and provide guidance to those in need of assistance with developmental and production issues. Whether it's training set-up technicians, process engineers, sales engineers, or part and mold designers in the skills required to excel in the plastics industry, or providing consulting services to address specific challenges that manufactures are experiencing, I'm ready to share my extensive experience and expertise.

In the grand narrative of a 30-year career in plastics engineering, I have had the privilege of witnessing the industry's evolution, from the intricacies of injection molding to the complexities of resin and compounding. The journey has been marked by growth, learning, and the joy of contributing to the creation of innovative products that impact industries and people's lives.

As I venture into this new phase with The Plastics Doctor, my aim is to remedy the "ailments" of those business involved in manufacturing of parts and compounds and business that design plastic parts and molds. My experiences, my training, and my commitment to this field are all at the service of clients who seek to excel in the dynamic and challenging world of plastics.

The journey is far from over. The story continues, and I look forward to what the future holds in the exciting and ever-evolving domain of plastics engineering. The Plastics Doctor is ready to offer solutions that solve problems and empower those who share the same passion for plastics that has driven me throughout these remarkable 30 years.