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December 14, 2023

Employee Spotlight: Meet Rich Heisel!


Meet Rich

Unique, bombastic, confident, gifted, helper, leader, pillar, team-player, effervescent, ponytail and beard, a go-to, hardworking, swagger, a bit of a character, nice guy, friend. These are just a few of the descriptors his PDC colleagues mention when his name is brought up. While his presence is unmistakable, some may not know that he’s been a staple of PDC longer than most, is always willing to help anywhere needed, has a green thumb, likes to cook, and even stepped up to study Canadian code books and lead our team to achieve Canadian welding certifications. Meet Rich Heisel, PDC carpenter and fantastic Structural Welding Supervisor!

According to Bob Pfaffl, PDC Plant Manager, “Rich has been at PDC longer than most people think, probably in the top group in seniority now. He can be a bit of a character, but always gives his best effort when the deadline is looming, and things must get done. Willing to help whenever or whatever the job or task. He took on the responsibility of becoming our Certified Welding Inspector and helped our team get through the Canadian Welding certifications. He is a union carpenter by trade, but we have him locked in for the welding long haul now. It’s been fun watching Rich teach the other welders of various skill levels how to get better and the way we put the Cassette® structures together. I’m glad he is part of our team. And I think his hair is longer than any other employee here.”

According to Doug Borucki, Production Supervisor, “Rich is one of the first people I got to know here at PDC. He was one of the first people to help me get to know the construction process here, and one of the most helpful people here in the building. When you want to fabricate something, bounce it off Rich. If you are dreaming about building something involving metal, resource to Rich. I helped Rich install a staircase he made for Bill years ago, that I have no idea how he even dreamed it up. And it fit perfectly. Some people have that gift, and Rich is one of them. You are not going to find a better welder, fabricator, team player, co-worker, and just all around nice guy.”

And according to Jim Maslowski, PDC President, “Mention Rich to anyone at PDC, and it elicits immediate recognition. To some, it will be his unique persona. Bombastic, effervescent and confident. To others, it may be his larger than life gate as he swaggers across the shop. Unmistakable are his calling cards that precede and follow him wherever he goes. His beard leads him proudly, and his ponytail follows him dutifully in all aspects of this life. Ask him if he would ever consider parting with either and you will prompt a prolific pontification. If you are a workmate, his response will likely be bold and affirming, over his dead body. If he senses a critical implication, he’s been known to color his response with a territorial threatening tone. If you’re his boss, he’ll chuckle and tell you they are one with him like his fingers and toes. None are dispensable. When the company needed a welder to set down this helmet, study the codes and pass the inspector’s test, Rich accepted the challenge and delivered. When we needed a welder to comply with all the requirements of the Canadian Welding Bureau, Rich stepped up. Rich is more than an employee at PDC, he is a pillar in the shop culture and a tireless company supporter. Thank you, Rich, and keep climbing.”

Now, on to a few more fun facts about Rich!

Tell us something about yourself that would surprise us…

“My house is a jungle. I have at least 60 plants.”

The last books I read were …

“Canadian Code Books W59-18, W47.1.”

My favorite thing about working at PDC is…

“Its location – knowing that I can show up at the shop, instead of having to jump from city to city to get to work.”

What do you like to do when you’re not working?

“Cook and feed my sons.”

What made you choose your current career?

“I became a carpenter to get away from welding.”

What is one food you can’t resist?

“Pizza, in its many forms”

Best vacation you’ve had?

“I haven’t had a decent vacation in 15 years.”

The last show I binged was …

“I don’t watch any shows.”

I’m most comfortable when…

“I’m wandering around tall trees off the beaten path.”

My favorite quote is…

“It’s easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled.” Mark Twain

Thank you for sharing, Rich, and for all you bring to PDC. We are grateful to have you on our team!

Miss Dan’s Spotlight? See it here, and stay tuned for more Employee Spotlights!


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