Coalisland man Justin Donnelly recently celebrated an incredible milestone of 50 years’ service with Terex — a global manufacturer that employs close to 2,000 employees across nine facilities in Northern Ireland, including three in the Dungannon area.
In celebration of Justin’s long and dedicated career, and one that is still rewarding him 50 years on, Terex has shared his impressive story as a valued member of their global team.
Justin began his career with Terex, which was then known as Ulster Plant, straight after finishing Technical College in May 1969. At that time, Ulster Plant was a small company with a total of 15 employees, and Justin’s plan was to get some work experience before moving on to ‘bigger and better things’. That belief was short-lived once Justin became inspired by the product and team he found himself fortunate to work with.
He said: “I soon realised I had joined something special, a company with a great product and a highly skilled workforce who were determined to be number one in the mobile screening market. It was special to see this ambition come to fruition and be a part of its success.”
Justin’s first job at Ulster Plant was cutting sheet metal for various machine parts, and over his first four years, he found himself reaping rewards of ongoing training, development and support, learning to weld assemblies, assemble and fit components, test hydraulic systems and check and sign out machines prior to dispatch. During this time, the company changed its name to the now global phenomenon that is Powerscreen.
As Powerscreen grew and expanded, Justin’s career grew with it, becoming involved in its Sales and Service team, supporting the new European dealer network through machine demonstrations and installations.
This work led Justin to the opportunity to spend time living in North America, which not only brought him career success, but resulted in him meeting Catherine, who would soon become his wife, along with the birth of his two daughters.
He continued: “I continued this (Sales and Service) work in North America for a number of years where I met my wife Catherine in Canada. We have two daughters—Carla born in Canada and Moya born in the USA.”
Justin moved back to the Dungannon factory in the mid-1980s and progressed through various roles in service, research and development, applications, plant commissioning and management.
“I now have the role of Applications Specialist for Terex,” he explained. “I still support Aftersales (through plant commissioning), Engineering (through new product development and existing product improvement) and Sales and Marketing (through customer site visits and case studies).”
When asked for some highlights on his long and varied career, Justin added: “My career has been very rewarding and has taught me so much that I could probably write a book! But some highlights that come top to my mind are having had the opportunity to travel the world, meeting and working with some fantastic people and now, this personal highlight—reaching 50 years working for one company.”
Kieran Hegarty, President, Terex MP said: “To reach 50 years’ service is very rare in the modern working environment, especially when you consider the changes both in terms of product and the company—having started out with what was originally known as Ulster Plant with only 15 employees. Fast forward fifty years and we now have offices and factories across the world, a team of around 13,000, and a substantially evolved product portfolio. Congratulations to Justin for such a remarkable achievement—we hope to continue benefiting from your knowledge, experience, reliability and dedication for another few years yet!”
According to Justin, that’s the case for now, “Think I will give it a few more years—haven’t found anywhere better!”