Culture - Jan 16, 2020
Casting Call: Dallas PikeAlly Melby | Waupaca Foundry
Dallas Pike started working at Waupaca Foundry in Etowah, Tennessee as general foundry labor in 2006 to help pay for college. After a couple of months, his education and career goals no longer matched, so he decided to take a break from school. Dallas is now the customer service manager and is finishing his degree at Cleveland State Community College with the help of Waupaca Foundry’s tuition reimbursement program.
We talked with Dallas to learn more about his career at Waupaca Foundry and go get ‘em attitude.
Do you have family that works at Waupaca Foundry with you?
“I think everybody in my family works here. My brother works here. He is a shipping driver. My uncle is a millroom foreman during night shift. Even two of my brothers-in-laws work here.”
What made you decide to pursue customer service?
“I was actually a millroom foreman for the last eight years. I was going back to school at Cleveland State for a business degree, and Steve (Reif, assistant plant manager) presented the opportunity. Talking to him and Kenley (Hansen, plant manager), we decided this was a really good step. For me, it was something new that I wanted to learn, and I love it.”
What motivates you to get up every morning and go to work?
“The way I was raised. I was raised on a dairy farm, and getting up and doing your job every day was how we lived. I just brought that over into my career here. It’s how I live. This place has presented a lot of opportunities for me, personally, and for my family. Knowing that coming to work every day makes it just that much easier for us; I continue on that path.”
Do you have a favorite part about working at Waupaca Foundry?
“I would say the people that I work with every day. I know you asked the question earlier about family. I do believe 90% of the people who work here that I’ve encountered are family. Not just direct family. I’ve built a lot of relationships with a lot of people here that have impacted me throughout my career, and that’s really stuck with me. I’ve met a lot of really good friends. I just enjoy coming to work with them.”
Is there any way you would like to see Waupaca Foundry change?
“Absolutely. I would like to see more youth here -- younger people coming in and getting the same opportunities I got. I don’t think we, here at Plant 6, recruit enough young people.”
And, what would your advice be to new employees on their first day?
"If you’re planning on making a life and getting better opportunities, this is the place to be."
Waupaca Foundry is the proud employer of more than 4,500 employees, and 37 percent have been with us for 10 years or more. We appreciate the hard work and dedication from each and every one of our team members who keep producing the highest quality cast iron components.
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