P&Q Profile: Carmeuse’s Greg Kolodziej

By |  October 3, 2018
Headshot: Greg Kolodziej

Kolodziej

With a father who started a crushing and washing company in northern Wisconsin, Greg Kolodziej has been around the construction materials industry since he was 3 years old. Over the last 20 years, Kolodziej has developed aggregate sites, overseen road construction and paving projects, and optimized operations and efficiencies at a series of quarries. Now based in northwest Ohio, Kolodziej has spent the last four-plus years at Carmeuse, which is ranked eighth on the U.S. Geological Survey’s latest list of the nation’s top crushed stone producers.


What’s new at Carmeuse in 2018?

The company has been working diligently to not only continue to service their current customers, but look to expand its network and customer base on a number of fronts. The economy right now has been very good for business, and the company is working hard to maximize opportunities during this time while remaining cognizant of its costs to produce.

I have been very busy working with many of the North American plants both on increasing production and efficiencies and decreasing costs per ton. I have also spent a lot of time on larger capital redesigns and new construction projects.

How has demand for construction aggregate been this year?

The demand for aggregates seems to be strong. There are still some softer market areas, but overall demand seems to be good.

Tell us about recent transition to Bettsville, Ohio, and what do you find yourself getting into at work these days?

Any relocation comes with challenges, particularly when there is a family involved. However, everyone has done very well in our transition to date. My wife Christina and I are looking forward to getting settled in hopefully sooner than later. Our children have adapted very well and are enjoying this area so far. Our relocation was particularly challenging with both of us holding down full-time jobs, along with other transition issues that have taken us a bit longer than expected to finalize.

I find myself getting into quite a few projects, which are variable in both scope and area of the business.

Is there a special project you are most proud to have worked on?

I am most proud of many of the projects I undertook with my father and his employees at his business. Since we were a small business, we often had to put plants together as “projects.” Typically my dad would buy an older piece of equipment in the most unique places. He found an old wash plant in a pit a few miles outside of the town I was going to college at and purchased it. He would “acquire” them and we would rebuild and run them, including fabricating portable conveyors, screen plants, wash plants. I think my favorite was an old Allis 45 Hydrocone plant that we converted from an open-circuit to a closed-circuit plant.

What are the top challenges Carmeuse faces at the moment?

I would say Carmeuse faces the same challenges as many of the other producers in the industry. One would be talented personnel. Carmeuse is lucky enough to have a talented team from senior leadership down to ground level in many areas. However, attracting and retaining young talent is an issue like for us like it is for anyone else.


Five things

BEST ADVICE RECEIVED – As a manager, always hire people who are smarter than you are. If you know how to manage and guide your team rather than think for them, it will take you and the company much farther.

FIRST JOB – Spade shovel and grease gun operator for the family business

HOBBIES – Boating, fishing, hunting and playing with the kids

SPORTS – Green Bay Packers, Milwaukee Brewers, Wisconsin Badgers

TRAVEL SPOT – Our family has always enjoyed visiting the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, particularly around our alma mater, the Michigan Tech area.

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