November's Innovative Expert of the Month

October 24, 2018 Outdoor GreatRoom Company

Eric Hawkinson, VP of Operations at The Outdoor GreatRoom Company

Eric Hawkinson, Vice President of Operations

Number of Years at The Outdoor GreatRoom Company (OGC): I joined OGC in August 2010 (8+ years).

How many years of experience in this industry? I have been in this industry since 1984.

What is your overall experience/background?

My formal education is in mechanical engineering. One of my main areas of expertise is in product development and research after years of experience with Heat-N-Glo®, Heatilator®, Hearth & Home Technologies, and The Outdoor GreatRoom Company™. I also received experience and knowledge through building and remodeling in my personal time.

Memorable moment at OGC?

One of my most memorable moments involved going from years of red ink in the books to finally making a profit. But I was not able to share the moment with the man that originally talked me into changing careers; Dan Shimek (OGC founder) passed away at about that same time.

Why do you love working at OGC?

I enjoy working at OGC because of the people. While the company has changed a lot over the last few years, the stability of the positive attitude, the solid respect, and pleasant co-workers are the best. I think we also have a great customer base that enjoys working with the people at OGC.

Favorite OGC Product?

The Uptown gas fire pit table is my favorite OGC product. It has the style, look, quality, and feel of a great entertainment piece. It is a great addition to any backyard; and it has a great flame, nice serving area, and comfortable design to sit around.

What do you enjoy in your free time?

I enjoy making things better than they were. I have purchased or been involved in the purchase of a few homes that most people would never consider buying. When we are done with them, they make for great homes for the people who buy or rent them. I also like to fix things like motorized toys, equipment, and other challenging things with hidden life in them. This winter’s project, once the latest house is done, is an antique slot machine.

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