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I grew up in the suburbs of Minneapolis, MN and always had an interest it fixing and building machines. Go karts and bikes when I was younger, then snowmobiles and cars that I liked to race when I was a teenager, always searching the local scrap yard for parts, but I never really considered a skilled trade as a career choice. I also enjoyed photography and wanted to pursue a career along that path but the school I wanted to go to was near impossible to get in to and had a 4 year wait list. After goofing off in college for a year with no direction I was suddenly accepted to that photography school, problem was I could not afford it so I turned to the Navy for a photography school and GI bill to make my dream happen.

I aced the ASVAB so the recruiter made me take a nuclear engineering exam, which I took just to humor him and aced. They offered me the nuclear propulsion program that I had zero interest in until they offered a $28,000 signing bonus, which a pile of credit card debt and nothing else going I made a decision that changed my life forever. I spent 8 years, 7 months, and 22 days in the Navy serving aboard a LA class attack submarine and the last few years as an instructor teaching nuclear and electrical theory in a classroom environment as well as hands on training. My teaching job allowed me the free time to get a business degree on the Navy’s dime with time left over to become a fairly decent golfer.

My first job after leaving the Navy was a field service engineer for ABB in Detroit, where I met my soon to be wife. We serviced LV/MV switchgear for large industrial facilities (Mostly automotive) and I discovered that both the engineers and UAW/IBEW electricians had little or no training on this equipment they were responsible for so I started to develop custom substation maintenance training programs for our customers which quickly became a full time job. Fed up with Michigan winters I moved to Florida and opened a training facility for ABB (Easier to get people to come to Florida than Detroit for a training class) but ABB sold off their service division which eventually went out of business (On 9/10/01, the day before the world changed) so I went to work for a few different NETA companies that wanted to offer the training programs I developed.

The training business was great and I enjoyed it for about 10 years but it required extensive travel and with young children at home I wasn’t going to miss out on being a father so started looking for something else. I loved the Southeast, the weather, values, and people was what I wanted for my family but I didn’t want just any job, I wanted a challenge. Then one night at 2AM my phone rings, it was someone in my industry I had known for a while and respected for longer, he had just bought a company in North Carolina that specialized in switchgear services for nuclear plants and he wanted me to run it for him. 2 weeks later my family and I were in a moving truck headed South to a house we bought unseen and a whole new adventure, best decision I ever made. Every day produces a different challenge, our customers come to us for solutions that no one else could figure out so I have to get creative, luckily I work with some of the best talent in the country and have vast resources at my disposal. I don’t even know what my job description is, my daughter just says I am a “circuit breaker email writer”.

I have lived here for 8 years and love it, kids are a perfect age for travel so we all explore the country on road trips whenever we can. Having the mountains and beach close by is ideal for weekend trips. After a 25 year break I am back to racing cars on the weekends, and when the kids go off to college I plan on restoring some old sports cars, back to the scrap yards, full circle.

Zog
 

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corn-fused
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congrats, ZOG you earned it. by the way, what does ZOG stand for?
 

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Congrats, and thanks for sharing some of your time and experience with us.

:thumbsup:
 

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congrats, ZOG you earned it. by the way, what does ZOG stand for?
Actually it is a nickname I got in the Navy based on a Far Side comic. Found out later there was a king Zog (Interesting guy) and also a militant group (No affiliation)
 

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All I can say is wow! Well deserved zog
Congrants.
 

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Proud Navy Veteran
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Us 'Nukes need to stick together!
 

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Way to go Zog! Thanks for being a part of the circus that is ET.
 

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View attachment 39806

I grew up in the suburbs of Minneapolis, MN and always had an interest it fixing and building machines. Go karts and bikes when I was younger, then snowmobiles and cars that I liked to race when I was a teenager, always searching the local scrap yard for parts, but I never really considered a skilled trade as a career choice. I also enjoyed photography and wanted to pursue a career along that path but the school I wanted to go to was near impossible to get in to and had a 4 year wait list. After goofing off in college for a year with no direction I was suddenly accepted to that photography school, problem was I could not afford it so I turned to the Navy for a photography school and GI bill to make my dream happen.

I aced the ASVAB so the recruiter made me take a nuclear engineering exam, which I took just to humor him and aced. They offered me the nuclear propulsion program that I had zero interest in until they offered a $28,000 signing bonus, which a pile of credit card debt and nothing else going I made a decision that changed my life forever. I spent 8 years, 7 months, and 22 days in the Navy serving aboard a LA class attack submarine and the last few years as an instructor teaching nuclear and electrical theory in a classroom environment as well as hands on training. My teaching job allowed me the free time to get a business degree on the Navy’s dime with time left over to become a fairly decent golfer.

My first job after leaving the Navy was a field service engineer for ABB in Detroit, where I met my soon to be wife. We serviced LV/MV switchgear for large industrial facilities (Mostly automotive) and I discovered that both the engineers and UAW/IBEW electricians had little or no training on this equipment they were responsible for so I started to develop custom substation maintenance training programs for our customers which quickly became a full time job. Fed up with Michigan winters I moved to Florida and opened a training facility for ABB (Easier to get people to come to Florida than Detroit for a training class) but ABB sold off their service division which eventually went out of business (On 9/10/01, the day before the world changed) so I went to work for a few different NETA companies that wanted to offer the training programs I developed.

The training business was great and I enjoyed it for about 10 years but it required extensive travel and with young children at home I wasn’t going to miss out on being a father so started looking for something else. I loved the Southeast, the weather, values, and people was what I wanted for my family but I didn’t want just any job, I wanted a challenge. Then one night at 2AM my phone rings, it was someone in my industry I had known for a while and respected for longer, he had just bought a company in North Carolina that specialized in switchgear services for nuclear plants and he wanted me to run it for him. 2 weeks later my family and I were in a moving truck headed South to a house we bought unseen and a whole new adventure, best decision I ever made. Every day produces a different challenge, our customers come to us for solutions that no one else could figure out so I have to get creative, luckily I work with some of the best talent in the country and have vast resources at my disposal. I don’t even know what my job description is, my daughter just says I am a “circuit breaker email writer”.

I have lived here for 8 years and love it, kids are a perfect age for travel so we all explore the country on road trips whenever we can. Having the mountains and beach close by is ideal for weekend trips. After a 25 year break I am back to racing cars on the weekends, and when the kids go off to college I plan on restoring some old sports cars, back to the scrap yards, full circle.

Zog
So what you are telling us is that...until now, your life has been pretty much UN-eventful......of course, I.m kidding. Congrats:thumbup:.
 
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