Nick Miniard makes an appearance in every Heidelberg Distributing warehouse in Ohio every week of the year. Nick, a seven-year Heidelberg Associate, drives the statewide transfer truck and though his day starts and ends in suburban Cincinnati, in between he’ll make stops throughout the state.
All told in a typical week he’ll drive around 1,600 miles. “The route is actually 1,634 miles to be exact,” laughs Nick. “I’ve done the math!” His travel schedule has him departing at all hours of the morning depending on that day’s destination. “On Tuesdays when I go to Toledo and Wednesdays when I go to Cleveland, I’ll leave at 1:30 in the morning,” Nick says. “The goal is to arrive when the morning crew does, so I can be unloaded, reloaded and on my way as soon as possible for the return trip.
Like any truck driver, there are elements that are always beyond the driver’s control: traffic, accidents, unexpected payload changes, things that throw him off schedule. “I know there are things that can’t be helped from time to time,” Nick says. “I don’t feel like I’ve failed in that instance, but it bothers me. I feel like if I can get it done, then I need to make it happen.”
“That’s what makes Nick the kind of person that every manager wants to have working for them,” says Greg Flynn, Ohio Valley Operations Manager. “He’s always been a team player and never fails to step up. He gets the job done no matter the circumstance.”
Nick joined Ohio Valley Wine and Beer in 2009, after a distinguished career in the United States Marine Corps. His tours of duty included Operation Phantom Fury in Iraq; a multi-nation training regiment in West Africa which included Allied infantry units from Italy and Spain; 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit of Europe; and evacuation of the US Embassy in Lebanon. He received the Purple Heart during his service resulting from shrapnel hitting his hand after bomb explosion while he was riding in a convoy in Fallujah, Iraq.
“My time in the Marines was the greatest thing to happen to me. My biggest take away was getting the opportunity to deal with and learn from different cultures,” says Nick. “I spent time in about 18 different countries. You get a whole new respect for different cultures, different groups of people and the way they live.”
As the only driver to visit all of the company’s Ohio locations every week, Nick has a unique insight into what makes Heidelberg tick. “The two most important things I have learned on this route throughout all the Heidelberg houses are teamwork and communication,” says Nick. “I can’t stress each of those enough. That’s what makes the difference in Heidelberg running smoothly every day!”
Since 1938, Heidelberg Distributing has relied on its Associates to make our company great. We’ll spotlight some of the hardworking men and women who not only excel in their everyday jobs but also go above-and-beyond in exemplifying Heidelberg’s core values.Archive