An Arkansas guy that builds and race dirt cars on the weekends

Meet Brian Ritchie, Maintenance/Engineering Manager at Gränges’ plant in Newport, Arkansas. Brian has over 30 years of experience within the industrial field.

Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background

I live in a small country town with my Spouse of 28 years. We have two Daughters and three Grandkids. I went to school in the town we live in and attended Community Collage for (2) years prior to joining the Navy. While serving in the Military, I was an aviation mechanic. When my obligated service ended, I moved back home to start other ventures.

I have worked in the industrial field for about 30 years. Duties such as electrician, mechanic, x-ray tech, and in various leadership roles. My current position with Gränges is Maintenance / Engineering Manager.

How long have you been working at Gränges?

I have been employed at the Newport Plant for almost 19 years.

Why Gränges?

At first it was just a way to support my Family. As time moved forward, I had many opportunities for personnel growth as well as professional. I feel valued as a part of our team and have the chance to be part of growth in our community and company.

What does a typical day look like for you and what are you currently working on?

My typical day right now is very active. I arrive about 6 am and asses our current production status. After reviewing production, we are currently working on our Mill upgrades. We have several contractors on site performing multiple task. I will generally make my rounds to check on progression of these task prior to our 9 am update meeting. We have a lot of new employees on site as well, so I have to mentor through out the day as well. The remainder of the day consist of Production support as well as project progression.

What do you like most about your job? What’s the best with working at Gränges?

What I like most about my job is troubleshooting and problem solving. I enjoy seeing growth advancement in process attributed to investment for future growth. People here have a genuine care for others and success.

If you could change one thing about working here, what would it be?

I can’t say I could change it because it is part of growth, but right now work/ life balance is tough. This situation is really expected during time of growth. I expect we will be on track next year for good growth opportunities and our current projects completed.

What do you do when you’re not at work?

My hobbies include hunting, fishing, and working on my land we purchased. The one thing that I think most people do not know about me is that I build and race dirt cars on the weekends, Ritchie concludes.