Meet Carlos Juarez from the Outside Crew!

CCarlosarlos has been working for Gage Brothers for almost three years and you might recognize him as one of the stars of our TV commercial. Originally from Guatemala City, Guatemala, Carlos and his three brothers were raised by his mother. By the age of eight, Carlos was working and his mother saved his earnings so he could pay for school books.

At age 18, Carlos started working in a supermarket. He had a friend who had recently moved to Los Angeles and he helped him with the process of coming to the United States.

While it was scary moving without his family and knowing very few people here, it was worth it because of the dangers of his country. Upon arriving in California, Carlos started taking English classes for a couple hours each day and worked as a butcher in a grocery store—where he met his wife. The pair have been together ever since.

The grocery store they worked at was eventually sold and Carlos relocated to Sioux City, where a friend/former neighbor in Guatemala was living. He started working at Tyson Foods and took the hardest job he could find, which he quickly learned and allowed him to earn enough money to buy a house for his mother back in Guatemala. Growing up, his family did not have a lot of money and his gift of a home was a symbol of why he moved to the U.S.—for a better life. This past September, Carlos traveled home to Guatemala to spend time with his family and bought his mom a few turkeys because she loves taking care of them.

Carlos learned to play the keyboard and from 1998-2002 he toured around the tristate area playing shows with a band known as GuaMex. They came up with this name because two of the members were from Guatemala and two were from Mexico. They played mostly Spanish music. When the band broke up, Carlos used the equipment to be a D.J. at weddings, parties and anniversaries.

Carlos loves to eat tamales and puncha, both of which are traditionally made during Christmastime. He recently observed Semana Santa, a religious holiday when Catholics are forbidden from eating beef or pork. This isn’t tough for Carlos though, one of his favorite dishes during this time of year is pescado a la viscaina. One thing he misses from back home is the fruits that are not native to the Midwest.  He used to be able to grab a mango after it dropped off the tree.

The most defining characteristic of Carlos is his love and devotion to his family. He has a 19-year-old son who is a medical engineering major at the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, a 16-year-old who plays soccer in competitions as far away as Miami and finally 9-year old twin daughters to keep him and his wife plenty busy. He says having children can be difficult and it certainly changed his life: they traded their car for a van before the twins were born and also had to buy a larger house to accommodate their growing family. But Carlos is a true family man and wouldn’t change a thing.


¡Conoce a Carlos Juarez del Equipo Externo!

Carlos ha trabajado para Gage Brothers durante casi tres años y es posible que lo reconozca como una de las estrellas de nuestro comercial de TV. Originario de Ciudad de Guatemala, Guatemala, Carlos y sus tres hermanos fueron criados por su madre. A la edad de ocho años, Carlos estaba trabajando y su madre ahorró sus ganancias para poder pagar los libros escolares.

A los 18 años, Carlos comenzó a trabajar en un supermercado. Tenía un amigo que se había mudado recientemente a Los Ángeles y lo ayudó con el proceso de llegar a los Estados Unidos.

Aunque fue aterrador moverse sin su familia y conocer a muy poca gente aquí, valió la pena debido a los peligros de su país. Al llegar a California, Carlos comenzó a tomar clases de inglés durante un par de horas cada día y trabajó como carnicero en una tienda de comestibles, donde conoció a su esposa. La pareja ha estado junta desde entonces.

La tienda de comestibles en la que trabajaban finalmente se vendió y Carlos se trasladó a Sioux City, donde vivía un amigo / ex vecino de Guatemala. Comenzó a trabajar en la tienda de comida Tyson y se tomó el trabajo más difícil que pudo encontrar, lo que aprendió rápidamente y le permitió ganar suficiente dinero para comprar una casa para su madre en Guatemala. Al crecer, su familia no tenía mucho dinero y su regalo de un hogar fue un símbolo de por qué se mudó a los EE. UU. para una vida mejor. En septiembre pasado, Carlos viajó a su casa en Guatemala para pasar tiempo con su familia y le compró unos pavos a su madre porque le encanta cuidar de ellos.

Carlos aprendió a tocar el teclado y de 1998 a 2002 hizo una gira por el área de tres estados tocando en shows con una banda conocida como GuaMex. Se les ocurrió este nombre porque dos de los miembros eran de Guatemala y dos eran de México. Tocaron principalmente música en español. Cuando la banda se separó, Carlos usó el equipo para ser un D.J. en bodas, fiestas y aniversarios.

A Carlos le encanta comer tamales y puncha, ambos hechos tradicionalmente durante la época navideña. Hace poco observó la Semana Santa, una fiesta religiosa en la que los católicos tienen prohibido comer carne de res o cerdo. Esto no es difícil para Carlos, sin embargo, uno de sus platos favoritos durante esta época del año es el pescado a la viscaina. Una cosa que echa de menos en casa es la de los frutos que no son nativos del Medio Oeste. Él solía ser capaz de agarrar un mango después de que se cayó del árbol.

La característica más definitoria de Carlos es su amor y devoción por su familia. Tiene un hijo de 19 años que es estudiante de ingeniería médica en la Escuela de Minas y Tecnología de Dakota del Sur, un joven de 16 años que juega fútbol en competiciones tan lejanas como Miami y finalmente sus hijas gemelas de 9 años que lo mantienen a él y a su esposa bastante ocupados. Él dice que tener hijos puede ser difícil y ciertamente cambió su vida: cambiaron su automóvil por una camioneta antes de que nacieran los gemelos y también tuvieron que comprar una casa más grande para acomodar a su familia en crecimiento. Pero Carlos es un verdadero hombre de familia y no cambiaría nada.

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Get to Know: New Manufacturing Engineer Yanko Maldonado

Yanko

Please join all of us in giving a warm welcome to Yanko Maldonado, who was recently hired as the Manufacturing Engineer for Gage Brothers. He will lead the design, installation, and improvement of production systems requiring the integration of people, equipment, and materials for Gage Brothers precast products.

Yanko hails from Veracruz, a Mexican port city on the Gulf of Mexico coast. He is also trilingual (English, Spanish and German).

Welcome to Gage Brothers, Yanko!

Q. Where did you grow up? Tell us about your hometown.

A. I grew up in Veracruz in the South of Mexico.  It is on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico and is very green and pretty, but also very hot for most of the year.

Q. How did you get into this line of work?

A. I went to school for Mechatronics Engineering, which was a new field of study at the time that I started college that had a lot of crossover with other engineering fields.  I also became very interested in lean manufacturing processes and energy efficiencies and got my masters in Energy Management.

Q. What attracted you to the manufacturing engineering position with Gage Brothers?

A. The opportunity to implement engineering tools, lean principles and continuous improvement to help different departments to improve processes, by making things simpler and faster.

Q. What are you looking forward to the most with your new job at Gage Brothers?

A. Getting to know everyone and start using my skills and knowledge to help all the different departments!

Q. What is your dream vacation spot?

A. Barcelona

Q. What was your favorite subject in school?

A.  I think it was close between Computer Science, and physics

Q. What are your hobbies?

A. Practicing guitar, playing soccer and video games, and spending time with my 9-month-old son, Santiago.

Big LebowskiQ. What is your favorite movie?

A. The Big Lebowski

Q. What’s the most unusual thing you’ve ever eaten?

A. Unagi Eel Sushi

eel sushi


Q. En qué lugar creciste? Platicanos de ahí.

A. Yo crecí en Veracruz en el Sur de México cerca del Golfo de México, Es un lugar muy bonito tiene es una zona de jungla con mucha vegetación pero También es muy húmedo y caluroso.

Q. Cómo decidiste entrar en esta profesión?

A. Yo estudié ingeniero en Mecatrónica, que era una Carrera nueva que juntaba diferentes ingenierías como mecánica y electrónica, durante mis studio me intereso saber mas sobre procesos esbelto o “lean” y en evitar desperdicios y decidí estudiar hacer una maestria en Administracion de Energia.

Q. Que te Intereso en la posición de ingeniero de Manufactura en Gage Brothers?

A. La oportunidad de emplear diferentes herramientas e ingeniería, proceso esbelto y mejora continua para poder ayudar a mejorar los procesos en los diferentes departamentos haciéndolos más fáciles y rápidos.

Q. Qué es lo que más te emociona en tu nuevo trabajo en Gage Brothers?

A. Conocer a todos los empleados y empezar a usar mis habilidades y conocimientos para ayudarlos.

Q. Cual es tu lugar ideal para vacacionar?

A. Barcelona.

Q. Cuál fue tu materia favorita en la escuela?

A. Yo creo que era un empate entre Computación y Física.

Q. Cuáles son tus pasatiempos?

A. Tocar la guitarra eléctrica, jugar y ver football, jugar videojuegos y pasar tiempo con mi hijo de 9 meses.

Q. Cuál es tu película favorita?

A. The Big Lebowski

Q. Qué es lo mas raro que has comido?

A. Sushi de anguila

 

Gage Brothers Celebrates #WIC2018

2018 WIC Week Logo WhiteWomen in Construction Week is part of the broader Women’s History Month celebration in March. The week, started by the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC) is an opportunity to highlight the growing role of women in the construction industry.

“NAWIC’s core purpose is ‘enhancing the success of women in the construction industry’ and what better way to continue this purpose, but to dedicate our WIC Week, not only to our members, but to all women working in and for the construction industry and to recognize the contributions women make to the success of projects in all facets of the industry,” said NAWIC President Riki F. Lovejoy, CBT, CIT.

Women represent 47% of the total U.S. workforce and are playing an increasingly significant role in the world of construction. Yet according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics and OSHA, only 9% of total construction employees are women.

Given this fact, it’s inspiring to come across women who are thriving in such a traditionally male-dominated industry.

In honor of Women in Construction Week, Gage Brothers wants to highlight some exceptional women who help to make Gage Brothers a stronger and more competitive company. Read on to explore Marlene Fiedler’s experiences in construction/manufacturing and to find out her advice for others looking to take a similar path.

MarleneName: Marlene Fiedler
Job Title: Grounds & Facilities Foreman 

Q: How long have you been in the manufacturing industry?

A: 13 years

Q: Why did you choose a non-traditional career field?

A: I had cooked in a restaurant for 30 years and I wanted something different. So glad I did…I love my job!

Q: Have you ever faced any barriers in what is a male-dominated industry?

A: No

Q: What challenges do you see other women in construction facing?

A: Being able to compete side-by-side with the men doing the same job on a daily basis.

Q: What is the most satisfying part of your job?

A: The people I work with and the company I work for! Also, I get to work all over the plant and do different things!

Q: What motivates you to keep working so hard at Gage Brothers?

A: The day to day challenges!

Q: What advice do you have for women who want to work in the construction or manufacturing industry?

A: If your new to the construction industry like I was, don’t be afraid to ask questions and be willing to learn. Try hard, don’t give up and you can prevail!

Gage Brothers Celebrates #WIC2018

2018 WIC Week Logo WhiteWomen in Construction Week is part of the broader Women’s History Month celebration in March. The week, started by the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC) is an opportunity to highlight the growing role of women in the construction industry.

“NAWIC’s core purpose is ‘enhancing the success of women in the construction industry’ and what better way to continue this purpose, but to dedicate our WIC Week, not only to our members, but to all women working in and for the construction industry and to recognize the contributions women make to the success of projects in all facets of the industry,” said NAWIC President Riki F. Lovejoy, CBT, CIT.

Women represent 47% of the total U.S. workforce and are playing an increasingly significant role in the world of construction. Yet according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics and OSHA, only 9% of total construction employees are women.

Given this fact, it’s inspiring to come across women who are thriving in such a traditionally male-dominated industry.

In honor of Women in Construction Week, Gage Brothers wants to highlight some exceptional women who help to make Gage Brothers a stronger and more competitive company. Read on to explore Ann Hill’s experiences in construction/manufacturing and to find out her advice for others looking to take a similar path.

Cassie_1Name: Cassie Nicolai
Job Title: Human Resources & Safety Manager

Q: How long have you been in the manufacturing industry?

A: Eight years

Q: Why did you choose a non-traditional career field?

A: When I was close to graduating with my business degree I started looking for an internship that would let me get my foot in the door with a company. I knew I wanted to work for a company that did “something cool.” My 23 year-old self had no idea what that meant, but as soon as I took a tour of Gage Brothers during my interview, I knew this was where I belonged. Since then I have fallen in love with the manufacturing industry.

Q: Have you ever faced any barriers in what is a male-dominated industry?

A: There have been times when I felt someone did not value my opinion because I am a woman in the manufacturing and construction industry. Usually it was someone from outside of Gage Brothers who had not met me before, and I quickly find a way to work with (or around) them.

Q: What challenges do you see other women in construction facing?

A: Stereotypes definitely exist still about women who work in construction. Most of them negative which I won’t go into detail here. Progressive companies realize that manufacturing and construction have become high-tech industries that need all types of people with a variety of skills and knowledge. Those companies who are stuck in the past will be left behind eventually.

Q: What is the most satisfying part of your job?

A: As an HR and Safety professional, my greatest joy is seeing others succeed—especially when that person may have doubted their ability to do so. I enjoy trying to find the right tools and support that a person needs to thrive.

Q: What motivates you to keep working so hard at Gage Brothers?

A: I have had countless opportunities to learn and grow since starting at Gage Brothers. That definitely motivates me to return the favor by giving them my all.

Q: What advice do you have for women who want to work in the construction or manufacturing industry?

A: I would like to steal Ann Hill’s advice from yesterday because she said it perfectly! Women have a lot of expectations placed on them in society. Just do what interests you and what you’re good at. Be yourself. Also, sometimes women can be our own worst enemies. Let’s support and lift each other up.

 

Gage Brothers Celebrates #WIC2018

2018 WIC Week Logo WhiteWomen In Construction Week is part of the broader Women’s History Month celebration in March. The week, started by the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC) is an opportunity to highlight the growing role of women in the construction industry.

“NAWIC’s core purpose is ‘enhancing the success of women in the construction industry’ and what better way to continue this purpose, but to dedicate our WIC Week, not only to our members, but to all women working in and for the construction industry and to recognize the contributions women make to the success of projects in all facets of the industry,” said NAWIC President Riki F. Lovejoy, CBT, CIT.

Women represent 47% of the total U.S. workforce and are playing an increasingly significant role in the world of construction. Yet accoding to the Bureau of Labor Statistics and OSHA, only 9% of total construction employees are women.

Given this fact, it’s inspiring to come across women who are thriving in such a traditionally male-dominated industry.

In honor of Women in Construction Week, Gage Brothers wants to highlight some exceptional women who help to make Gage Brothers a stronger and more competitive company. Read on to explore Ann Hill’s experiences in construction/manufacturing and to find out her advice for others looking to take a similar path.

Ann HillName: Ann Hill
Job Title: Project Estimator 

Q: How long have you been in the construction/manufacturing industry?

A:  20 years in manufacturing and construction.

Q: Why did you choose a non-traditional career field?

A:  I took a summer job working for the Nebraska Department of Roads right after high school. I was shock to learn how much I enjoyed it!  My father and brothers worked in construction, but before that summer I never saw construction as an option for me.

Q: Have you ever faced any barriers in what is a male-dominated industry?

A:  Not really. My overall experience has been very positive. I have never felt being a female is a setback especially at Gage Brothers. There have been a few times where I thought I wasn’t taken seriously and felt that it was because I am a woman, but it fueled me to want to work harder.

Q: What challenges do you see other women in construction facing?

A:  I think biggest challenge for women joining the construction industry is exposure. Construction needs to be presented to all of our youth as a viable career opportunity. There are many great reasons to be involved in construction and manufacturing for women and men alike.  It can be so much more than just a job.

Q: What is the most satisfying part of your job?

A: Collaborating. I love when a team works together to find solutions and better practices. I also like seeing the final product and knowing I helped make it happen.

Q: What motivates you to keep working so hard at Gage Brothers?

A:  I believe in the company and the people who work here. I want to see us all succeed. I really enjoy what I do.

Q: What advice do you have for women who want to work in the construction or manufacturing industry?

A:  The industry needs you. Work hard and be yourself. It’s our individuality that gives us strength. Be involved and ask questions. Never stop learning.

 

 

Gage Brothers Celebrates #WIC2018

2018 WIC Week Logo WhiteWomen In Construction Week is part of the broader Women’s History Month celebration in March. The week, started by the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC) is an opportunity to highlight the growing role of women in the construction industry.

“NAWIC’s core purpose is ‘enhancing the success of women in the construction industry’ and what better way to continue this purpose, but to dedicate our WIC Week, not only to our members, but to all women working in and for the construction industry and to recognize the contributions women make to the success of projects in all facets of the industry,” said NAWIC President Riki F. Lovejoy, CBT, CIT.

Women represent 47% of the total U.S. workforce and are playing an increasingly significant role in the world of construction. Yet according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics and OSHA, only 9% of total construction employees are women.

Given this fact, it’s inspiring to come across women who are thriving in such a traditionally male-dominated industry.

In honor of Women in Construction Week, Gage Brothers wants to highlight some exceptional women who help to make Gage Brothers a stronger and more competitive company. Read on to explore Tara Bailey’s experiences in construction and to find out her advice for others looking to take a similar path.

Tara Bailey
Job Title: Purchasing Manager 

Tara Bailey_2Q: How long have you been in the manufacturing industry?

A:  I grew up with my family owning a manufacturing company so I have been around it my entire life. I have been working in the manufacturing industry now for more than 14 years. I can’t imagine working in any other industry.

Q: Why did you choose a non-traditional career field?

A:  I found something that I enjoy doing and that is challenging. My great grandma passed away before I was born but I have always admired her. Back in the 1930’s and until she passed she owned and ran the family business with my great grandfather.  She was a very involved business owner. She didn’t just answer phones she actually was involved with the running the business. She was breaking barriers back then and I have always looked up to her for that.  My grandmother has always been the same way so I grew up around strong women working in non-traditional career fields at the time.

Q: Have you ever faced any barriers in what is a male-dominated industry?

A:  There have been times that I feel I wasn’t taken seriously due to the fact I am a woman. I have had times in the past where I have told someone how to solve an issue they were having and they told me my solution was incorrect.  They then proceeded to asked someone who was male. The male gave them the exact same answer and it was correct. I’ve also been told I couldn’t do something because I am a woman but I have the attitude of watch me and I will prove you wrong. I’ve always turned being told I can’t into motivation.

Q: What challenges do you see other women in construction facing?

A:  I think the biggest challenge is getting people past the idea that you have to be a male to work in construction. If you can get your own mind to think “I can do this” and “I belong here,” that is half the battle.

Q: What is the most satisfying part of your job?

A: The most satisfying part of my job is solving problems. When I can provide a solution to a problem and improve a situation or process.  I also enjoy when I am in a group and looking around to see that I am the only female. Knowing that it doesn’t matter and I am seen as an equal is satisfying.

Q: What motivates you to keep working so hard at Gage Brothers?

A:  Gage Brothers is a great company to work for. I have never felt that because I am a woman I am held back here. I find my job challenging and rewarding.

Q: What advice do you have for women who want to work in the construction or manufacturing industry?

A: It’s easy to think that because you’re a woman you can’t work in construction or manufacturing.  The truth is the industry has changed and you see more and more women working in it.  If construction and manufacturing interest you go for it.  Don’t let the fact that you are a woman stop you or the belief that you can’t be feminine and work in the industry.  You can wear steel toe shoes and a hard hat and still feel girly.

Gage Brothers wins AVA Digital Award

Platinum Site BugThe Association of Marketing and Communication Professionals (AMCP) has recognized Gage Brothers with a 2018 AVA Digital Award.

The annual competition recognizes outstanding creative achievement in the design and production of digital media, and is sponsored and judged by the AMCP.

Gage Brothers received an AVA Digital Platinum Award for its overall Facebook presence. Specifically, the company was acknowledged for using the social media site to humanize the Gage Brothers brand and showcase its company culture.

More than 2,500 entries were judged by industry professionals. Entries ranged from audio and video production, to website and social media sites, to other forms of user generated digital communications.

All entries were judged on a 100-point scale. Entries scoring between 90-100 points received a Platinum Award, while those assigned 80-89 points received a Gold Award and entries with 70-79 points garnered honorable mention recognition. Gage Brothers was the only company from South Dakota to win an AVA Digital Award this year.

platinum statuetteGage Brothers’ Facebook page (facebook.com/GageBrothersConcrete) serves as the digital storytelling hub for the Sioux Falls-based company. The company uses infographics, time-lapse construction videos, photo albums and blog posts to build brand awareness, while get to know videos with employees allow Gage Brothers to create a sense of community within the business and shine the spotlight on its dedicated workforce.

Since 2015, Gage Brothers’ Facebook fan base has increased sevenfold.

“Gage Brothers is incredibly honored to have received this award,” said Gage Brothers president Tom Kelley. “We are thrilled to be recognized for the immense effort that goes into sharing our story in the digital landscape.”

About the AVA Digital Awards:
AVA Digital Awards is sponsored and judged by the Association of Marketing and Communication Professionals (AMCP). The international organization consists of several thousand production, marketing, communication, advertising, public relations, and free-lance professionals. AMCP administers recognition programs; provides judges and rewards outstanding achievement and service to the profession. As part of its mission, AMCP fosters and supports the efforts of creative professionals who contribute their unique talents to public service and charitable organizations. production – to website development – to social media interaction – to mobile marketing.  AVA Digital Awards is administered and judged by the Association of Marketing and Communication Professionals (AMCP), one of the oldest, largest, and most respected evaluators of creative work in the marketing and communication industry.