On Friday, November 3, 2023
Q&As with Molly VerDught
Molly, you started at AHT in November of 2022. What was your background before that?
I grew up on a row crop farm (corn & soybeans) in northern Missouri. I attended the University of Missouri - Columbia where I majored in agricultural economics and minored in international business. I married my college sweetheart & we moved to Iowa for our jobs. I worked in the agriculture industry as a grain merchant for several years, then stayed home with my children for ~10 years.
How would you describe the company culture at Advanced Heat Treat Corp.?
There are many long-term, loyal employees at AHT. You do not find that in most places. I think that people stay because they feel valued & the work is rewarding. I picked up on that culture right when I started.
Being newly promoted to Sales Assistant at AHT, what are some things you’ve been learning lately?
I have been learning more details about the services that we provide at AHT & how each customer & part is unique & given focused attention. This makes for a great customer experience… & a lot to learn! It is quite interesting to see the many different industries that we service & think about where those parts will go after they leave our facilities. While we are not directly making anything, we are taking something already produced & making it better.
We hear that Thanksgiving is your favorite holiday.
I love Thanksgiving! Family, food, & time to reflect on God’s blessings this past year. We have different crafty activities we do each year, usually involving the children making a list of things that we are thankful for in the shape of something festive. I want to instill in my kids a heart of gratitude, because with gratitude comes contentment & joy.
When you’re not working, how do you like to spend your time?
I love running & hiking. I also spend time doing things my family enjoys—baking cookies, throwing the football, going to the library. We have four children, ages 14, 13, 10 & 6, so we have a variety of interests & personalities. Some of my kids’ activities include cross country, music (saxophone, clarinet, viola, piano, choir); flag football; Lego robotics teams; 4-H; AWANA Bible club & youth group. We also like helping on our family farms as often as we can.
You lived abroad at one point. Tell us about that.
My first summer in college, I studied agriculture in southern Thailand. It is a fascinating & biodiverse place with lovely people! It is also the hottest, wettest place I have ever been. After Thailand, I traveled to China to visit my sister (who was teaching there at the time). Being my very first time out of the U.S., I found it eye-opening to see how challenging it is to live in some parts of the world. I gained a new appreciation for the infrastructure & conveniences that we have.
What is something people may not know about Molly VerDught?
In our first 10 years married, my husband & I moved to 5 different cities (including upstate New York) & had 4 children. Life was not boring!
What is something people may not know about Advanced Heat Treat Corp.?
AHT is committed to being top of its class in the heat treating & nitriding industry. Continuous improvement of equipment, technology & training is always being looked at. ‘How can we do this better?’ Despite 40+ years in the business, there is no complacency.
What do you appreciate about working at Advanced Heat Treat Corp.?
AHT is a positive, people-oriented place to work. I tell my children to try new things, be ready to learn, & not fear taking risks. I had to take my own advice after returning to the workforce in a new industry. Fellow employees have been helpful as I ask questions & learn more about my role.
Now some random questions:
- First job: Farm laborer
- Favorite food: Tacos; Pasta
- Least favorite food: Olives; Onions
- Pets? Nope, just kids
- Have you ever played an instrument? If so, what? I play piano, though not very well. But 2 of my kids play!
- Hidden Talent? I enjoy rock climbing walls. I am less fearless as I get older, but I like to climb.
- Favorite movie: Napoleon Dynamite; Tommy Boy
- Meaningful quote? Psalm 19:14—Let the words of my mouth & the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock & my redeemer.
- Favorite thing about Fall: watching harvest progress. A combine…the grain carts; fall tillage. I love it.
- Pumpkin Spice or Apple… what’s your preferred Fall scent? Apple. An apple crisp baking in the oven is the best smell ever!
- "Super Power": I am a regular blood donor with the universal blood type!
Want to "Meet" More of the AHT Team?
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