For most of his 30 working years, Marty Duggan has been crushing asphalt for recycling or operating/managing an asphalt production facility. That’s a tremendous amount of knowledge and experience he brings to his new role as Astec’s Regional Parts Sales Manager serving customers in NY, ME, VT, NH, MA, CT and RI.
His most recent position as the plant operator/manager for Maryland Paving crystalized the responsibility a plant operator has in keeping the facility running during the production season by making sure everything that needs to be done during the winter maintenance shutdown is done correctly and completely. During that 13-year stint, Duggan learned the value and necessity of having all the parts needed for maintenance on the shelf and ready to go to complete the work that needed to be done during the three-month shutdown.
"THE FACT THAT I’VE BEEN MAKING HOT BLACK STICKY ROCK MOST OF MY ADULT LIFE SHOWS THAT I UNDERSTAND WHAT IT REQUIRES."
— Marty Duggan, Astec Regional Sales Manager
“We had a dozen or so guys on hand to perform the maintenance work at the various plants we operated, and we also had to coordinate all the sub-contractors (electricians, crane operators, etc.,) we needed to get some of the work done, so everything needed to be staged and ready to go,” Duggan recalls. “There are normal wear parts that have to be replaced on an annual basis, and then we would also tackle a major project or two in order to upgrade the facility, like replacing every baghouse bag every seven years, or installing new ductwork. We were always looking for something to repair or upgrade in order to keep the facility running smoothly during the production season. With that approach, we were able to minimize our downtime during the paving season.”
As a plant operator, Duggan realized how important it was to form a partnership with suppliers who have parts available when you need them.
“A lot of the parts are OEM parts, and that required our supplier (the manufacturer who sold us the plant) to keep those parts readily available,” Duggan notes. “Now that I’m on the other side of the desk, I know it’s my responsibility to make sure my plant operator customers have the parts they need when they need them.”
As a plant operator, Duggan also appreciated when a manufacturer’s representative knew the different quality grades of parts available for different applications, and how to install the right part. You can be sure he knows which part is right for the application, and how to install that replacement part.
Even though Duggan has been with Astec for a short time, he travels the Northeast and to build a mutually successful relationship with plant operators and does so with the valuable attribute he brings to the table in that he’s “felt their pain” when it comes to keeping a plant up and running.
“A lot of these guys have been doing it longer than me, but the simple fact that I’ve been involved in making hot black sticky rock most of my adult life shows that I understand what it requires,” Duggan says. “I know my experience can be very valuable to younger operators, but also help experienced operators validate what they need to do to maintain their plants. A lot of them just want me to go over what they’re planning to do during the maintenance shutdown.”
As a past attendee of Astec’s annual Advanced Customer Schools, Duggan appreciates the way Astec focuses on helping customers succeed, and that’s why he pursued a parts manager position that would allow him to help plant operators succeed.
Although he’s very busy in connecting with all the customers in his territory in order to begin establishing a relationship, Duggan does find time to enjoy the outdoors. He took up hunting approximately five years ago and when he’s not working, you can usually find him out at his tree stand enjoying the wildlife.
“A lot of times I don’t even take a gun,” Duggan says. “I just like to sit in my tree stand and quietly watch and listen to my surroundings. And, when I want to shoot, I go to a gun range.”