Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Company: The Austin Company
Job Title: Manager of Continuous Improvement
Why did you choose a career in the baking industry?
While our company does not solely focus on the baking industry, this industry is a key demographic for our sales due to our experience and a proven track record of successful projects for a variety of clients.
Describe your educational background.
I received my Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering from the University of Cincinnati. After working as a professional for 10 years, I furthered my education at Baldwin-Wallace University in Cleveland, obtaining my Executive MBA. I have also attended several AIB courses, with the most helpful one titled "All About Baking". A great overview of the baking process for a variety of products.
Tell us about your career path.
My career path within The Austin Company started with master planning several bakery facilities. One of those projects became a full-service engineering and construction project, which I saw through as the Project Manager due to having developed a great rapport with the client representative. From there, I began attending the ASB shows, and my involvement really expanded when the Young Professionals Committee was formed and I was asked to be a Committee member.
What advice would you give to someone looking to start a career in the baking industry?
Get involved. The first few events may seem overwhelming at first, but the more you keep coming, the better each experience will become - both personally and professionally. Seek out committees, as not only is it the fastest way to meet people and become seen as influential, but help is truly needed and appreciated as well. Don't become complacent. As you grow within your company and this industry, always look for ways to continue to improve - yourself, your company, the organization, the industry...etc.
How has your involvement in the American Society of Baking helped your career?
My involvement in ASB has greatly helped my own career, specifically being a member of the YPC. It has taught me how to handle a board-type environment where not everyone is always on the same page, but everyone has great intentions. Working through these differences to arrive at the best outcome is a very positive experience that has carried over into my professional career. Also, just being able to visit, tour, and work for so many different bakers and facilities in the industry has been very educational. I am not a baker, but now understand the processes that are involved in a variety of different products. Lastly, being involved in ASB enabled me to be able to contribute to our Webinar series. I hosted the first in the series, titled "Introduction to Bakery Process" that discussed each major area within a commercial bakery - how the product is produced and what aspects of construction go into the design of the facility, especially sanitation features.