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April ’21 Team Member Spotlight: Jim Hickman

Jim Hickman Family Pictures

Get to know this month’s Envase Team Member Spotlight: Jim Hickman, President of Envase.

1. How long have you worked at Envase, and what’s your role?

Jim:  Currently I’m the President of Envase, prior, was President/CEO of the Compcare Services business unit. I started in fall of 1990 as a Telemarketer for Compcare Services, then, in 1997 was fortunate to purchase Compcare Services, along with my now long time business partner, Luana Connor. As President/CEO, I handled all sales, most onsite operational reviews, initial training and consulting.

2. What do you like most about your work? 

Jim: Love the ever changing Intermodal Industry. Providing a TMS application with live dispatching is tough enough, but when you add in the nuances of Intermodal Drayage, this compounds the problems tenfold. Working with our staff and developers to build an awesome system that is the mission critical element to another company’s livelihood and to be successful is one of the greatest satisfactions.

3. Name one Envase member you would take on a road trip, and why?

Jim: Wow, great question. As Envase is still a new company and the fact I haven’t had the chance to meet everyone, so far, I would say that would have to be Vishal Yadav. I typically make an annual trip to Mumbai India for 3 weeks to visit one of our development teams.  Last year, I had the pleasure of meeting Vishal on a synergetic project involving Dray Master (our newest company to join the Envase network).  I’ve been going to India since 2000 when we opened the India office for development, however, I’ve only gone for business, no pleasure. So, you can say that I’ve been at least 30 times and have yet to venture out and see the Country of India. I think Vishal would be a great ambassador on this imaginary road trip through India.

4. What’s the weirdest food you have ever tried?

Jim: Although I’d like to think I’m pretty adventurous when it comes to food, I don’t think anything weird comes to my mind, since I’ll try just about anything once. I will say one of the most delicious meals I’ve had was in Vancouver Canada involving Kangaroo. Couldn’t believe how rich and tender the meal was. I will add, that I did eat a fish eyeball once, if someone would classify that as weird, which was just a mouthful of sea salt and slight crunch – sorry to gross anyone out.

5. If you could go anywhere now, where would it be and why?

Jim:  Iceland. Need I say more? Kidding, I’ve had friends go visit and come back saying it was the best trip ever. The scenery, nature and experiences would be amazing.

6. If you could have one superpower ­what would it be?

Jim:  The ability to understand and speak any language. Since 1990, I’ve typically been on the road for business roughly 200 days a year. I can’t count how many times that I’ve been in an airport, rental car counter, restaurant etc, when I see someone struggling to communicate with each other due to language differences. Unfortunately, it always seems to be one that doesn’t speak English who is disrespected by the other who thinks everyone should know the language. How awesome would it be to step up and be able to speak on behalf of each person, turning an awkward situation into a very pleasant one for both.

7. Something new you would like to learn this year.

Jim:  I live in Huntington Beach California. Our office is in Long Beach. My drive takes me along the ocean where, when I’m driving home, I see dozens of open water Kite Sails dragging someone across the ocean at top speed. I always think, that would be cool to do and I should learn how… unfortunately the fear of sharks normally suppresses the next step of actually learning.

8. One thing about you that no one knows in the organization?

Jim:  Although a few people know… I think it’s a great opportunity to share the following, in hopes it could save someone’s life someday. Fourteen years ago, I was diagnosed with stage 3 colon cancer (Age 40). Typical hard headed male, instead of following up on my symptoms with a doctor, for 3 years prior, I always attributed to my travel and being on the road. Prior to the diagnosis during my last physical, my doctor asked if there was anything else… I could have easily said no Sir, all good… but something pushed me to tell him about my symptoms. I’m alive today because of that little voice that told me to say something (turned out that I was in the early stage of stage 4). After a successful surgery and 12 rounds of Chemotherapy, followed by another 48 hours each time wearing a Chemo pump and 10 years of follow up, it’s nice to no longer have that routine for check ups. I felt that this is an important enough topic for anyone, no matter your age, if you sense that something is not right with yourself, both body and mental health, seek help from your Doctor. We are all experts in the field we are in, seek the experts when it comes to your health. 

9. Anything else you wish to add?

Jim:  Thank you for allowing me to be the first spotlight to kick this feature off. As I hope to be with the Envase team for many years to come, I challenge whomever is spearheading the spotlight topic, that once we go through all of the Envase team, we start over, asking the same questions, then, compare to how differently we may have answered.

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