Posted on Jul 12, 2011I was raised in Eugene, Oregon and graduated from North Eugene High School in 1975. During my high school years my studies were focused on a career in forestry and wildlife management while also excelling in science and mathematics … my math teacher once told me I should be studying to be a CPA but I had my sights set on working in the great Oregon outdoors. Well as everyone knows things don’t always go as planned in life.
In the fall of 1975 an opportunity came my way to begin work for what was at that time Country Campers. It was a very small operation with a crew of about a dozen folks, two of which were members of my family. It was a small shop just off Highway 99 between Eugene and Junction City, in fact the building is still there. At that time Country Campers was building canopies and had just started building some Class ‘C’ motorhomes on van cutoffs. I still remember my first job was cutting and installing the fiberglass insulation in the walls and roofs. It wasn’t long before the Meadowview Rd. building wasn’t large enough to build what we needed to meet the demand so in early 1976 Country Campers moved to Eugene in what seemed like at that time an enormous building. We continued to build canopies, class ‘C’ motorhomes and also started building pickup slide in campers. It wasn’t long until this building was no longer large enough so in 1977 a new manufacturing plant was built in Junction City.
Country Campers continued to grow as did many opportunities to learn new things and to grow with what was still at that time a fledgling company. I had the opportunity to try my hand at some electrical work on what at that time were pretty simple systems in comparison to today’s complex computerized systems. Electrical work and wiring kind of came naturally to me, maybe because of my analytical skills and aptitude for numbers. In 1978 I became the supervisor for the electrical department and continued in that position until early 1984.
In early 1984 Country Campers / Country Coach began their first Prevost Bus Conversion. I was soon asked to join a very small team of craftsman to assemble these very high line motorcoaches. This was a new venture with some great opportunities. In 1986 I was appointed the Conversion Production Manager and continued in that position until 2002. In 2002 I was appointed Plant Manager Custom Coach Division and remained in that position until April of 2009.