What is National Get to Know Your Customer Day? This day is observed annually on the third Thursday of each quarter (January, April, July, October). With so much business being conducted electronically, personal attention to customers can go by the wayside. Get to Know Your Customer Day is a fitting opportunity to turn that around, making a point of learning a little more about your customers. The better you know and understand your customer, the better you can serve them and their needs.
National Get to Know Your Customer Day is July 15
In conjunction with this observance on July 15th, I'm going to share a few things about McWane Ductile customers in Oregon and SW Washington, focusing on our distributors
Space does not allow me to mention everyone, but I will highlight a few individuals within each company in the spirit of getting to know your customer. It takes each employee's hard work and dedication to ensure the success of any branch/business. I think you'll find that certain words used to describe Ductile iron pipe, such as strong, flexible, and resilient, could also work to define our customers.
Who is Core & Main Waterworks?
Let's start this journey by learning about our distributor Core & Main Waterworks. Core & Main was established in 2017, with headquarters in St. Louis, Missouri. They have over 275 branches nationwide and are continuing to grow. In the Portland territory, Core & Main operates branches in Lake Oswego and Hillsboro, Oregon, and Vancouver, Washington.
The vision of Core & Main is to foster a world where communities thrive because their people and products provide safe, sustainable infrastructure for generations to come. ─ Core & Main
For the three branches in Oregon/SW Washington, the path to becoming Core & Main is long. In the beginning, the three branches were known as Pacific Water Works Supply, a privately owned company with offices throughout the Pacific Northwest. McWane and Pacific Water Works started their vendor/distributor partnership in the early 1980s. McWane supplied Ductile iron pipe, fittings, valves, and hydrants.
There have been corporate changes over the years, including name changes; however, the vendor/distributor relationship endures to this day. We are grateful to be teamed up with the waterworks professionals at Core & Main and the wealth of knowledge, experience, and expertise they bring to the table. A few of those professionals include the following:
- Mike Clute, District Manager, has 15 years in the waterworks industry – outside of work enjoys time with his wife and two young sons, along with opportunities to get out on the golf course.
- Rose Murphy, Account Manager, has 42 years in the waterworks industry, nearly 35 with Core & Main. Beyond her dedication at work, Rose served six years on the Board of Women's Loyal Order of Moose and continues her involvement there.
- Gerald Evans, Account Manager, has 24 years in the waterworks industry, starting with Core & Main in 1997. Besides being a waterworks veteran, Gerald is also a U.S. Navy veteran.
- Rory Lapping, Outside Sales Rep, has been in the waterworks industry since 1987 – outside of work, he enjoys time with family and getting out golfing.
- Noel Scott, Outside Sales Rep, has been in the waterworks industry since 1998 – outside of work, his passion is dirt bike riding.
- Dustin Veysey, Outside Sales Rep, started his waterworks career with Core & Main five years ago. When it comes time for having fun, he enjoys wakeboarding and dirt bike riding.
Who is Winsupply?
Winsupply of Portland and Bend Winsupply is part of the nationwide Winsupply family, opened their Oregon doors in 2012.
The vision of Winsupply is to create loyal, profitable customers by offering them superior solutions for their everyday needs and unique challenges. ─ Winsupply
Though Portland and Bend Winsupply became McWane customers in 2012, the working relationship between McWane and some of their employees goes back many years. I’d like to mention a few folks:
- Mike Petersen, Waterworks Sales, has been in the waterworks industry for 30+ years, and it is with great appreciation that McWane Ductile has been his Ductile iron pipe vendor the entire time. Mike is a U.S. Navy veteran, and outside of the business world, he enjoys spending time with his family, riding dirt bikes, and cheering on the Dallas Cowboys.
- Mark Miller, Waterworks Sales, also has a long history in the business, having started his waterworks career in 1987. Mark has enjoyed learning about a service-oriented business and the many friends and relationships formed with customers and colleagues throughout the years.
Who is Iconix Waterworks?
Iconix Waterworks (Formerly Corix), owned by Deschenes Group, is a leading distributor of water and wastewater utility infrastructure products with 40 locations across North America. Iconix has two Oregon locations, one in Roseburg, which opened its doors in 2012, followed by the opening of the Hillsboro branch in 2015.
McWane partnered with Iconix in 2017, becoming their Ductile iron pipe vendor. Having worked with several of the Iconix employees in the past, it provided me with an excellent opportunity to team up with these experienced and knowledgeable folks once again. Highlights of individuals from Iconix include:
- Mitch Davis Sr, Branch Manager for Hillsboro and Roseburg, is a great asset to the company with his 35+ years in the industry.
- Mitch Davis Jr, Outside Sales Rep, has 20 years of waterworks experience under his belt.
- Dan Schultz, Outside Sales Rep in Roseburg, also has extensive waterworks knowledge from his 20+ years in the industry.
Who is Budge-McHugh Supply Co.?
Budge-McHugh Supply Co. is a second-generation family-owned and managed business in Medford, Oregon. The knowledge and experience of their waterworks professionals, Tony Tacchini, Outside Sales Rep with 30+ years in the industry, and Cathy Combs, Inside Sales with 43 years in the industry, is a great benefit not only for the company but also beneficial in providing service and solutions for their customers in Southern Oregon. McWane Ductile became the Ductile iron pipe vendor for Budge McHugh in 2013; however, the working relationship with Tony and Cathy started many years before that.
As you can see, from just a few individuals I have mentioned and their long time in the industry, the characteristics of Ductile iron can also be used to describe them – flexible, resilient, strong, and long service life.
What Makes the Customer/Vendor Relationships Work?
At McWane Ductile, we believe the synergy of a good customer/vendor relationship comes ultimately from the same goals – from the desire to work as a team to provide outstanding service and solutions in order for projects to be successful for all parties involved and to do so in a safe, honest, and ethical manner.
McWane Ductile appreciates and respects the hard work, efforts, and dedication of the many employees within these companies, including those mentioned and those not mentioned by name.
Get to Know Your Customer Day coincides with my 40th anniversary at McWane Ductile. I feel honored and proud to work with so many tremendously great people within each of these organizations. On behalf of McWane Ductile and from me personally, thank you for your business and continued support. We look forward to building iron strong communities with you for many more years.
Need Assistance with Your Waterworks Project?
If you have any questions regarding your water or wastewater infrastructure project, be sure to reach out to your local McWane Ductile representative. We have team members who've managed small and large water utility systems, served in engineering consulting firms, and bring decades of experience in solving field issues involving pipeline construction and operation. From design to submittal, to installation, we strive to provide education and assistance to water professionals throughout the water and wastewater industry.