HOW DID YOU GET STARTED IN THE ASPHALT / EMULSIONS INDUSTRY?
I was 13 when I first started working in the industry over the summers. It seems like all of my breaks were spent at the plant and lab making and testing asphalt products, doing some type of road construction, paving, and learning about paving products. My father and grandfather were both in the construction business, and my great grandfather supplied road materials for the original construction of Highway 90 Beach Blvd in Mississippi.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE PART OF YOUR JOB?
One of my favorite parts is being creative and innovating. It’s an incredible feeling to provide new products that really make a helpful difference in our industry.
WHAT’S THE BIGGEST CHANGE YOU’VE SEEN OVER THE YEARS IN THE INDUSTRY?
Over my 20+ years in this industry, the biggest change I’ve noticed is how information and technology have impacted how we make and deliver products to our customers. For example, now we can monitor our trucking fleet via GPS and track their speed, rest time, and delivery times from our logistics center.
Another huge change is the speed in which roads can be built. Now you can go to sleep one night and wake up and there’s a whole new surface on the roadway. Before, roads had to be shut down for a couple weeks and commuters had to find another route. That change has a lot to do with innovation in asphalt technology—without fast-drying products, this turnaround speed would not be possible. We’re also working to provide innovative materials that are safer and more timely for nighttime construction conditions.
It’s an exciting time for change in the industry!
WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR BIGGEST ACCOMPLISHMENT AT BLACKLIDGE?
I’m most proud of helping assemble a leadership team of highly qualified and motivated employees who are taking our company to the next level. Blacklidge is a company that we’re all very proud to be a part of and it is a very exciting time for us.
LAST BUT NOT LEAST, WHO’S YOUR TEAM?
That one’s easy – Mississippi State! That’s where I earned my Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.). Go Dawgs!