Kurt Weamer is Director of Sales and Marketing the Wolkerstorfer Co. in New Brighton, Minnesota, which provides metal finishing services, plating, painting and destructive/non-destructive testing for aerospace, military, and heavy industry.
He has been at Wolkerstorfer since 2012, and before that worked in the plating chemical industry. He has logged nearly 40 years in the finishing industry.
How did you get your start in the finishing industry?
I went to work for my then father-in-law’s company in South Bend and never looked back.
What do enjoy best about the industry?
The people. Let’s be honest, this industry has quite a group of characters: Bill Fields, Roger Plath, Jeff Brassard, Charles Johnson, Milt Stevenson Jr., Rob Pawson and that is just the beginning.
Who is your hero?
My parents. The work ethic and family values were literally drilled into all of us.
If you could live anywhere, where would it be?
Any place near my children and grand children.
What is your biggest fear?
I am not crazy about snakes or anything that may look at me as a potential meal.
What is your favorite family vacation?
Disney World. Over the years, all my children have been to the Land of the Mouse. We just recently went again with my oldest daughter, Kelly, and her family and had a ball.
What would you change about yourself if you could?
There were times I was too focused on “the work” and not the reason why I was working, which was for the family. There is something to be said for the work/ family balance.
What really makes you angry?
When Notre Dame loses in football.
What motivates you to work hard?
I have always felt you had to pull your own weight, and maybe a little more.
What is your favorite thing about your career?
Again, the people. The team at Wolkerstorfer Company actually makes the work enjoyable.
What is your biggest complaint about your job?
Every now and then you have to work with “That Customer.” Every company has them and they can be draining.
What is your proudest accomplishment?
My four daughters. Each one is very unique and special.
What is your favorite book?
“One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich” by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. I read it in college and never forgot it.
What makes you laugh the most?
Certain people just get you. It could be long periods of time in between meetings, but when you see them you just go to another level of fun. Two in particular would be Mitch Marsh and Bernie Haviland.
What was the last movie you went to?
People still go to the movies? We recently watched 1917. Incredible.
What did you want to be when you were small?
If you could choose to do anything for a day, what would it be?
BBQ, cold beer with friends and family on a warm summer day. Does it get any better?
What is your favorite game or sport to watch and play?
Golf. I had dreams of going pro, but then I teed off and quickly realized metal finishing was my destiny.
Would you rather ride a bike, ride a horse, or drive a car?
Until bikes and horses come with motors, cars will always win out.
What would you sing at Karaoke night?
Those days are gone. Happy Birthday is a push right now.
What would be your last meal?
Why? Do you know something I don’t know?
Who is your favorite author?
For vacation reading, Clancy still is enjoyable. My dad is a big fan.
Have you ever had a nickname? What is it?
I have been called a lot of names, most of which should not be published. “Weams” is probably safest.
Do you like or dislike surprises?
My friend Chris Wolkerstorfer states it best: “The only surprises I like are the ones I know about.”
In the evening, would you rather play a game, visit a relative, watch a movie, or read?
There was no mention of having a Miller Lite? So, let’s go with visit a relative with a Miller Lite.
Would you rather win the lottery or work at the perfect job? And why?
At my age, I have worked enough so the lottery would be a good way to go.
Who would you want to be stranded with on a deserted island?
Okay, this is a loaded question. I liken it to the question a spouse may ask: “Do these pants make me look fat?” I like my bed at home, so the right answer is my wife, of course.