When the shop first started the phone would ring at all hours of the day and night, Danni would answer, and if we could help, I would get dressed, start the one van, and was off to work. We wanted everyone to know that we were “Always on Call,” and decided to make that phrase part of the business name.
Life for me, 25+ years later, is different than it was in the beginning. Today I run the business from the shop, no more field work for me other than dropping in on jobs from time to time. I now enjoy golf, reading history books, doing a little hunting and fishing, and spending the weekends at our family’s cabin. Soon I’ll be retired, whatever that means.
I am originally from a small town in Indiana and moved to Alaska with Pat and our two daughters in 1984. When the company first began I was only here part time and worked full time for either the Municipality of Anchorage or the State of Alaska. As the business grew I was needed here full time and left my positions with the Municipality and the state.
Since sponsoring Sonny Russell in the Iditarod in the 80’s, and housing him and his team at our home, I have volunteered in many ways. For the last several years I have volunteered in the computer room updating musher stats, times, dogs, and checkpoints. In our spare time Pat and I travel often and always pack our golf clubs. I enjoy bowling, spending time with my granddaughters and the rest of my family, and prefer to golf somewhere warm. I also enjoy going to performances such as Broadway shows, local dance performances, and taking my granddaughters to see shows like "Peter Pan.” I also consider those who work for our business to be family as well, and can always be found at employee’s children’s birthday parties.
Retirement is near and Pat and I will likely travel more often and farther to see new things. We both have bucket lists and have already started checking things off.
I grew up in Lafayette, Indiana, graduating from Central Catholic High School. I moved to Alaska in 1995 and soon after started working for Mountain Mechanical and learning the plumbing & heating trades from my uncle Pat. In the past, as Anchorage Municipal codes came under review I served on the committees that discuss and voted on the changes. I have attended courses specifically for Weil McLain and American Standard, who Mountain Mechanical is an authorized dealer and installer, as well as many other brand specific training courses for Rinnai, Taco, Tekmar, HTP Products, Triangle Tube, Upnor/Wirsbo, and many more.
In 2005 I married Gina and the next year we had our son Gabriel. My parents and siblings all still live in Indiana, and we try to see each other as often as possible. In my free time I enjoy doing just about anything outdoors with my son. We golf, shoot guns, compete in archery, hunt, bicycle, go to the cabin, and play outdoor sports together as much as we can. I also have two grandsons, from our older daughter.
I started working with Mountain Mechanical in 1993 to learn the trades from my cousin Pat “Ricky.” Having been in the industry for over 20 years, I have helped many young men to learn the skills needed for this line of work. I have done all kinds of work in the trades, from entirely new heating systems, remodeling a shower, rough in work, or just installing a new toilet. At 63 I am still interested in all the things plumbing and heating work has to offer and will continue to work as long as I can, health permitting. I am a Vietnam Veteran with an honorable discharge; I have four children, and a whole herd of dogs. I have been lucky enough to work in a family business that allowed me to work alongside one of my sons, River “Gene,” for the past twelve years and teach him a trade and skills that he enjoys and will give him lifelong work and a place within our family business that provides for us all. I have trained a lot of new young men in the trades, but none gives me more joy then to see my son following right behind me and being successful. River will even qualify to take his Journeyman’s test this year, something that took me many years of hard work and study to get.
Although I have been learning the plumbing and heating business for about 12 years, I have only been full time in the trades for the last five years. My dad, Tim, has taught me a lot about this business starting from when I was just a teenager. I have a lot of interest in field work and really enjoy it, and will be very excited to qualify, and take the exam for my Journeyman’s test soon. Working for the small, but growing, family business has given me the opportunity to really enjoy working alongside my close friends and family with Mountain Mechanical. I am not a number here at Mountain Mechanical like it can be at some of the bigger companies in Anchorage, I come to work every day and am surrounded by family.
I was born and raised in Alaska and have been working for Mountain Mechanical since 2000. I began my classroom training for HVAC and plumbing at Refrigeration School Inc. in Arizona, with my brother Russell, and continued it here in Alaska, initially as an apprentice with Mountain Mechanical and now as a journeyman.
I have been a lifelong Alaskan, and even when I attended the Refrigeration School Inc. in Arizona for my initial HVAC and plumbing training, I still considered Alaska home. After completing my training in Arizona I came back to Alaska and started working with Mountain Mechanical, initially as an apprentice, and now as a journeyman. I have worked with Mountain Mechanical, and my brother Curtis, since 2001. We also attended the Weil McLain better school of heat together.
I grew up in the plumbing and heating business. After graduating from UAA in 2001 with an Associate’s Degree in Culinary Arts and Hospitality I did a short stint in the restaurant industry. In 2003 I came to work for the family business fulltime. I currently handle invoicing, accounts receivable, and payroll along with other random duties around the office. In my free time I am the associate director and vice president for Momentum Dance Collective, I am also a choreographer and performer for the Collective, and am a jazz dance instructor at Alaska Dance Theatre. I enjoy escaping to Mexico, and other tropical locations, at least once a year with my husband and two daughters.
Born in Indiana, but raised in Alaska I have always preferred the colder weather. I was out of Alaska for about five years to attend college and work as a Paramedic in Oregon, but always knew I would come back to Alaska. I graduated in Oregon with an Associate’s Degree in Applied Sciences in Emergency Medical Services.
Before coming back fulltime with Mountain Mechanical I did supply management for a local air ambulance carrier which helped me transition into my position here as the Supply Manager. It took me some time to become familiar with a whole new set of parts, equipment, and supplies for the plumbing and heating trades, with ever evolving technologies, but I am learning. Always having new things to learn when you work in trades that are constantly changing and evolving, which I have with both Plumbing, Heating, and medicine, keeps things interesting. Since we have so many experienced people/family working with Mountain Mechanical there is a lot of knowledge in the plumbing and heating trades around here, so there is usually plenty of people to answer any questions that may come up.
It is great to have been witness to the growth of this business over my lifetime and I hope that it continues to grow, is able to bring more people on, and support more families. We are all in it for the long haul.
I’m a woman of God, a Wife, and a Mommy, three of the most spectacular titles one can have, I think. I think I am hilarious and am totally okay if you disagree. I have been known to “cackle” in a silent room just because I thought of something funny, and the quickest way to my heart is to either make me laugh, or feed me. I’m a simple girl with a big heart and can find something to laugh about in almost any situation. I have been known to do things “my own little way;” for example I prefer to read magazines from back to front. I am notorious for making up my own words to songs and I will forget them almost as quickly as I’ve said them. I call that my own little gift. I never know when it will hit, but it happens like a bolt of lightening… and it makes me laugh every time. I am the type of person who could have an entire conversation using only quotes from movies or song lyrics, and if you get the reference that will automatically get you extra points in my book. (Don’t worry, I don’t actually keep track) My babies are my pride and joy, my source of craziness, and what makes me who I am. I love them and I couldn’t imagine my life without them (that’s probably because it’s hard to think when you are so tired) I sing in the shower, and loudly in the car when I am all alone (don’t worry, I only close my eyes at red lights) and my heart has a strict policy that “nobody cries alone” if your crying… I’m crying and it doesn’t even matter why.