I am Columbus native. I served in the U.S. Army as a helicopter repairmen and pilot for 21 years; 10 of which were active duty and 11 as an active reservist. I left active duty to attend OSU where I earned a BS degree in Business Administration, summa cum laude in Production and Operations Management. Prior to entering the Army I worked as an injection molding technician at Peterson Baby Products in Reynoldsburg. I like machinery and fully intended to and did reenter manufacturing after college. My first post college job was as a Production Control Supervisor at Flexible Bus in Delaware Ohio.
My career as a project manager was influenced by my first hand experience with a poorly planned vertical integration project. The flawed planning and ineffective project management resulted in major quality and labor problems at Flexible. A fellow reservist offered me a job flying Emergency Medical Systems (EMS) for the old Grant Hospital Lifeflight II program. I took the job and Flexible Bus collapsed a year later or so later. The seeds of my becomihg a project manager were planted during this experience.
Over the next 10 years I flew for Omniflight Helicopters who was the Air Carrier that both Lifeflight and later MedFlight used to provide aviation services. In 1995 Ohio Health Lifeflight merged with OSUs Skymed and became MedFlight. Soon after I became an aviation base manager and led my first project. That project was to change the MedFlight 1 base in Columbus from a Visual Flight Rules operation (VFR) to an Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) operation. The project involved a new aircraft, hiring pilots and seeing to their training, as well as establishing the support systems, and outreach and education both internally and externally.
In 2000 MedFlight created a Program Director position they called Director of Operations; I was selected and became a MedFlight employee. As the lead functional manager I found myself running many of MedFlights projects. My project work eventually earned me a left handed compliment. In 2004 the Executive doing my evaluation was complaining about our organizations execution and continuity of projects. He then told me that “you are the only one around here who has a clue how to run a project; and that he wanted me involved in all of them from now on.” That changed things for me. Projects changed from something new and fun to something different. My future evaluations now depended on the “execution and continuity” of the organization’s projects. The local Project Management Institute (PMI) Chapter teaches a Project Management Professional (PMP) Certification Course and I enrolled. MedFlight experienced phenomenal growth and I found myself spending more than half of my time on projects. MedFlight restructured in 2005 and I became the Director of Project Management and Logistics. I earned my PMP Certification in 2006.
For the next 9 years I led a wide variety of projects both large and small while being responsible for ambulance, facilities, and biomedical equipment maintenance as well as our supply chain.