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Time to re-invent myself (again)
Like many of you, when I was young, I was faced with the challenge of getting my career started. I couldn’t get the job I wanted due to lack of experience and I couldn’t get the experience because no one was hiring me. What a dilemma. Finally I got a break. Ray Chalker (Chalker Engineers – in Tacoma) hired me as a structural draftsman at the age of 20. After a year of working there, the workload decreased dramatically and I went searching for something different – possibly working for an architect or another engineering firm. That’s when I stumbled across the ship moored at Tacoma Boatbuilding Company. I went in and filled out an application and got called back for an interview soon after. That was in 1980 and I’ve had a sort of love-hate relationship with the marine industry ever since. By the ‘love’ part of that, I mean that I love a good challenge, learning and growing. By the ‘hate’ part, I mean that the workload wasn’t always there to keep me employed. I’ve had to do a lot of contract work over the years in order to keep the bills paid.
So after 30+ years of working in the marine field, I’ve decided to look for work outside the marine industry. After all, most, if not all of the skills are transferrable, right? I mean creative solution-finding is not limited to a single industry. That’s the whole point of being ‘creative’ and versatile. Fortunately, I had a lot of good mentors along the way and have grown from draftsman to designer, senior/lead designer, assistant project manager, project manager, and even department manager a couple of times.
I’m not looking to become a doctor, lawyer, or airline pilot but who knows where this can go? Ideas?
  • Owner/Manager at Eastridge & Associates
    Jul 2012
    Presently working on several small projects, but looking for something longer-term. Since I live in Washington state, the best place for me to work is in the Puget Sound Area. I have worked for and in most of the shipyards from Bellingham to Tacoma. My areas of expertise are ship's structure, foundations and arrangements & outfitting. I do have experience in electrical, HVAC, piping and mechanical, but they have not been the focus of my work. If it floats I have probably worked on a vessel similar to it - including most of the Washington State Ferries and Alaska Marine Highway System ferries.

    New design, re-design, repair & re-fit, update, upgrade, conceptual design, consulting, research & development.
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