EHS Class of 1967
Even in the early years, Ernie always displayed an above average desire to succeed in his work environment.
He started his professional career in Wisconsin as a Plant Foreman, and later joined Harnischfeger Corporation in Escanaba as a Machine Shop Foreman and Production Control Manager.
Shortly after the closure of P&H, Ernie and family moved to the greater Grand Rapids area, where he accepted employment at Stiles Machinery, the “World's largest supplier of Industrial Wood Working Equipment”.
Ernie's career at Stiles spanned some 25 years before his retirement in 2011.
Ernie held a variety of management roles in his career, from Facilities Management to Purchasing; he became the National Parts Manager for Stiles and was later promoted to the position of Corporate Director.
His responsibilities afforded him the privilege of extensive U.S and World travel to Europe and Asia where he insured the company's success through Customer Care Management and relationship building.
Ernie also started and built a small automobile related Business Enterprise, which he has operated since 2003.
He is also a semi- professional artist having sold many of his creations, a ”hobby” he has enjoyed very much.
I would be remiss if I did not also include that Ernie found time to study and become a licensed minister and fulfill the duties of an Assistant Pastor at a local church.
I can recall that he always credited his English teacher Evelyn Klug with his communication skills, Mrs. Cote his History teacher for his interest in reading historical events and lifestyles and John Gustafson his Art teacher for his guidance and patience.
My husband and I are in the process of selling our Grand Rapids holdings, and moving to the “Esky area”, a long anticipated and greatly looked forward to “homecoming”.
Submitted by Linda Kay Preston-Johnson