Chuck is retiring this month after a long and successful forty years in the industry. Chuck’s journey started back in 1978, when he was given the opportunity to learn about the CRT industry and how to properly fit a wheelchair.
“I was working for a small family-owned company at the time. I watched the kids come out of school and move past me to better positions within the organization. One of my friends from high school worked for a DME/respiratory company and introduced me to the owner,” said Chuck. “He offered me a position and I accepted. A bit of a gamble since I didn’t know anything about the industry but 40 years later, here I am. It paid off.”
The owner of one of the original MED Group companies, where Chuck got his start, took him under his wing and taught him how to fit a wheelchair and how to navigate this unique industry. That company was eventually sold to Abbey Medical, which gave Chuck a taste of working for a national company early in his career. “I moved back to a local independent company who soon became part of Homedco,” said Chuck. “Homedco merged with Abbey to form Apria. When Apria cut their rehab program in the Philadelphia area I started a rehab program for a hospital-owned company. Fifteen years later we were purchased by United Seating and Mobility. Three months later was the USM/ATG merger from which Numotion emerged. Quite a year.”
Chuck has learned a lot throughout his career and has been able to share his knowledge and passion with others. “I have learned that you are only as good as your team and my success is directly tied to the team that supports me,” said Chuck. “I can’t explain why, but a few people have been crazy enough to follow me through most of my career. My brother, Roger, has been a tech for 35 of my 40 years. Mark, a production technician, has been with me that long and still assembles the chairs that we deliver. He’s so good that our referrals talk about him to our customers at the delivery. My tools don’t often come out of my bag because of the meticulous way Mark prepares the chairs. I met Wendy when she was working part time after school. She has been my CCC and OM through most of my career and is most responsible for my success and the success of the companies that I have worked for. More recently I have been extremely lucky to have a very talented seating tech, John, supporting me too. John has earned his ATP credential and will pick up where I leave off. My current CCC, Anita, and her predecessor, Kathy, are both employees who care about our customers and go out of their way to make sure they are taken care of.”
While Chuck credits much of his success to others, his work-ethic and kind demeanor has allowed him to form close bonds with the customers he serves. “The best part of my job has to be meeting and getting to know my customers, the therapists and the reps that I work with,” said Chuck. “I have made so many friends over the years and have many good memories from working in this industry. There have been so many amazing customers, but one that stands out is a man I met when he was very young and in school. He and his mom have trusted me to provide his mobility devices from his youth through adulthood. I saw him recently. I can still get him laughing,” said Chuck.
When asked what his plans are for retirement, Chuck said, “Having time for the activities that I enjoy like hiking, fishing, kayaking, biking and traveling domestically. I have four young grandkids and counting. I suspect they will keep me busy as well.”