I write this with mixed feelings. My wife Nancy and I have been planning for and looking forward to my retirement day for quite some time. I certainly welcome the freedom that comes with retirement, yet at the same time I will miss the daily involvement with my friends and colleagues in the wonderful foodservice industry. 

Jim Cullinane
I am proud of my career, and thankful to have spent almost all of my adult working life with one excellent company. I began my career with Hobart on August 4, 1975, and joined Vulcan May 1, 1990. The time has gone so fast...it seems like 38 weeks, not 38 years.

It is actually more than 38 years if I count the time spent at the dining room table listening to my dad talk about the foodservice industry. He spent 50 years in this industry, beginning in the soda fountain days with Liquid Carbonic and then as a contract salesperson for G.V. Aikman Co. He covered the state of Indiana designing and specifying many kitchens. For years most Indiana school kitchens were designed by Mike Cullinane because there were not many consultants in those days.

Dad often spoke about the wonderful people in this industry and those conversations led me to pursue a foodservice career, one I have thoroughly enjoyed. With my upbringing I always had great respect for the amount of knowledge and hard work that it takes to become a successful dealer sales rep. Over the years I have garnered even more respect for our dealer principals and their sales reps. A commercial kitchen is a small area of geography with a lot of production and local codes to incorporate in the layout and design. It takes a lot of talent and research to get the plans just right to maximize the quality of the final food product, as well as the productivity of the entire kitchen staff.

The great thing about all the challenges in foodservice is they require a lot of communication and frequent face to face meetings among the dealer, consultant, manufacturer's sales rep and manufacturer. Through all this communication, respect and friendships develop. Over the years many of my relationships have grown from business relationships to close, personal friendships. Dad was right when he spoke about the wonderful people in the foodservice industry. With my retirement I may leave our industry, but I will take with me many friendships!

I am grateful to have been a part of this tremendous industry. Thank you for your support over all these years and best wishes to each of you for many years of happiness and blessings.