A personal connection drew Robert Hewgley into his career path.
Hewgley is a certified millright for Nippon Chemical Texas, Inc. (NCTI). He graduated high school a few months early, in November 2002, and was set to get married. Two days after graduation, he started as a pipe helper.
“My soon-to-be father-in-law said if I was going to marry his daughter, that I was going to make good money,” Hewgley said. “I worked my way up to being a fabricator rather quickly, and by late 2005 I was supervising a few.”
Hewgley became a millwright in late 2018.
“I was a site maintenance supervisor for the site contractor when I was offered a direct position with the company I’m currently with,” Hewgley said.
“They offered to send me to school and to provide on-site job training, and I absolutely love it.”
Hewgley said he liked the industry when his father-in-law got him in the door and strayed from it a couple of times, but “came right back once I missed the money.” The hands-on part of the job is the most enjoyable part for him.
“I love working with my hands, so rebuilding pumps and working on other equipment is an enjoyment to me,” Hewgley said.
Troubleshooting equipment provides the biggest challenge.
“I’m still learning sensory methods on troubleshooting,” Hewgley said. “Deciphering between sounds and pitches or vibrations to figure out what’s going on with a piece of equipment.”
At the age of 37, Hewgley believes he’s exactly where he wants to be.
“I hope to still be at this plant in this position, to be honest,” Hewgley said. “I’ve moved around through a few companies and a ton of jobsites/plants in the past 19 years, and I love this place and this work the most.”
How do you spend your time outside of work?
“With my wife. We love trying different restaurants. We also co-pastor a church, so we stay extremely busy.”