4 Questions 4: Daniel Grady

As a Senior NDE Technician Daniel’s days are never dull.  If he’s not in the field, he can be found working in the PNDE lab conducting various inspections. Daniel also has the distinction of being the company’s first official employee!

Daniel’s days are non-stop, and we were able to pin him down just long enough to answer a few questions. Here are four questions for Daniel Grady.

Hi Daniel. Can you tell us a little about your daily responsibilities?

A large part of my job is to help the newer technicians. I guess you could say training. I also assist with jobs in the field. I get involved in all types of testing ranging from visual inspection to liquid penetrant, magnetic particle, hardness testing, MFE testing, leak testing, radiography, and ultrasound – mainly, I get involved with API inspections.

You likely didn’t set out to be an NDE Technician. Where were you expecting your career path to end up?

No that’s true. Growing up I wanted to be a police officer and later an architect. But things change. My senior year in high school my mother pointed me to a job fair that she read about in the paper. I walked in and within a couple of months I had a job in non-destructive testing.  I had no clue what non-destructive evaluation or testing was until I started, and I learned along the way.

NDE is a great field and I’d recommend it to anyone. It’s interesting and there’s always something out there that needs to be inspected, whether it’s rollercoasters, airplane components or even fuel tanks at a gravel yard. In addition, it exposes you to a lot of different people and companies. Working closely with our customers helps to create partnerships between the companies but it also opens the door to new personal friendships. I launched my NDE career 16 years ago, and I couldn’t be happier.

So, you were employee number one. Making the jump to a start-up had to be a little unnerving. What was it that enticed you to take the risk?

Well, it was the people. I knew I was taking a big chance, but I had tremendous respect for the company’s management. I knew what they stood for and trusted that together we could create something very special here. And in just 5 years we’ve done a phenomenal job.

Working at PNDE is great. There is a genuine openness, and your voice is heard. If you have suggestions for improvements, they are taken seriously. And we have an open-door policy, anytime you want to come in and talk, be it work related or personal, it’s always welcomed.

OK Daniel, last question. Enough about work. What do you enjoy doing in your free time? Any interesting hobbies?

Well, I don’t know how interesting they are, but I do like to spend as much time as I can outdoors. I like to hunt and fish, and I do a little taxidermy work on the side. I also enjoy woodworking and carpentry. I’ve been keeping busy on some home renovation projects.

Some say that around Christmas time I turn into a Clark Griswold. I have always enjoyed all the lights and want to make sure that the people in my neighborhood get the same enjoyment out of it as I do.