It takes a special couple that can not only live together but work together as well. These Pittsburg Tank & Tower Group couples have found the best way to achieve a life-work balance is to work at the same company.
Jerry and Nola Bernstein – Marketing for Pittsburg Tank & Tower Group
Jerry Bernstein wasn’t looking for another job when his late friend Don Johnston called him in 2009. Jerry had followed in his grandfather’s and father’s footsteps, running the family’s Downtown Henderson clothing store for 42 years.
Jerry was looking forward to retirement and traveling with his wife, Nola, but, ever the salesman, Don convinced Jerry and Nola to work for him, traveling the country in their RV and attending trade shows to promote Pittsburg Tank.
“It’s an opportunity to travel and meet new people,” said Jerry. “We enjoy meeting new people.”
Jerry and Nola have been married for 46 years. They started dating 50 years ago, having met while working shows at the Evansville Civic Theatre.
The couple still loves working together. In their marketing role, they enjoy learning about what other companies are doing and what’s new in the industry.
“The skills and products of PTTG are unmatched by anyone in the industry,” Jerry said. “It’s great to be able to represent that.”
Nola added, “They make us feel like family.”
Mike and Sandy Bullard – Pittsburg Tank Ground Division
Mike and Sandy’s friends often marvel at the amount of time they spend together. Mike and Sandy work for Pittsburg Ground Division – he is a senior crane operator, and she is a fire watch and safety. They tend to work the same jobs on the road. Their friends always wonder, with all that time spent together, how do they still stand each other? They chalk it up to mutual respect.
“We get along great,” said Mike. “Of course, we have a little argument every once in a while.”
“But when we get to work, we’re all about work,” said Sandy. “It’s not about being married on the job, it’s about work.”
“Yeah, we take our job seriously. We’re just friends at work,” Mike joked.
“Overall, we do really well,” Sandy added.
Mike has been with Pittsburg for about 12 years. Sandy worked for Pittsburg briefly in 2012 and 2013 before returning in 2018.
Being married to a man always away from home was tough for Sandy.
“She told me that I was either going to be married to her or be married to Pittsburg, to make my mind up,” said Mike. Luckily, his boss Jess Elger came up with a solution – hire Sandy so they could be on the road together.
They would much rather work together on the road than spend a long time apart.
“We don’t get to go home quite as much as we’d like to, but at least we’re together out here on the road,” said Mike. “That helps a lot.”
Both hail from the same “little country town” – Elba, Alabama – which has a population of about 3,800 people. They started dating in 2007. “We were just friends and decided to go out one night,” Sandy said. They celebrated their 10th wedding anniversary in November 2021. The Bullards are faithful attendants of Ino Baptist Church in Kinston, Alabama when they are home.
The couple keeps a Texas apartment, complete with a kitchen and washer and dryer. As of mid-January, they had been working on the same Texas project for about a year, and they were about to start another one located just a few miles from their apartment. Having worked in Texas for the past couple of years, it’s become like a second home for the Bullards.
Mike has worked for other tank companies, but “Pittsburg is by far my favorite. It’s just like they’re a big family. I look out for them, and they look out for me too. They are good to me.”
Mike and Sandy appreciate the family environment.
“We work with all the crews,” said Sandy. “They are like my kids.”
“We really have a lot of respect for the Johnston family, and we really enjoy working for them,” said Mike.
“It’s a really good support team,” added Sandy.
Brandi Davis and Zachary Green – Pittsburg Tank Maintenance and Pittsburg Tank Shop
There are advantages to working at the same company as your boyfriend.
“He can drive me to work if it snows,” said Brandi Davis of her boyfriend, Zach Green.
The couple met at a social gathering five years ago.
“We started talking again a few years later and became close friends,” recalled Brandi. “Then we started dating.”
Brandi has been with the PTTG consecutively since August 2017; she had previously worked here. She started at her job before Zach, and she recommended he take a position at Pittsburg.
The couple works in different departments. Brandi is an account executive for Pittsburg Tank Maintenance, while Zach is a fork truck operator for PTTG’s shop.
“We do not cross paths during work,” she said. “But it’s nice to be able to understand what the other person does.”
The couple likes working at Pittsburg.
“Mostly, I enjoy the people I work with every day,” said Zach.
“I love that I am constantly learning,” said Brandi. “I love the people and the culture here at PTTG. I love that I work for a company that invests in its employees’ health and future, from offering a free fitness center to the quit smoking initiative to the ESOP.”
John and Virginia Lewis – Ground Division
After more than a decade as a couple, it’s special for John and Virginia Lewis to be able to work together.
John and Virginia Lewis have been together for 14 years. They met at a neighbor’s house.
John started working for Pittsburg’s Ground Division first as a field welder. He had just come home from his first safety class when he recommended Virginia apply for a job in Thanksgiving 2020.
Virginia has been a fire watch/hole watch for a year.
“It is very special to be working beside him,” she said. “It makes me appreciate him a lot more now that I get to see firsthand what he does and how dangerous a job can be.”
Advantages of working together include having the same lunch breaks and the same time off from job site to job site. That means they can better coordinate their family vacations.
“I like working for PTTG because it is family-oriented, said Virginia. “They have allowed me to be part of their family and to allow me to work beside my husband. We can travel and see other parts of the United States together.”
Joe and Tracy Dumas – Allstate Tower
Joe and Tracy Dumas love being part of the PTTG family. The company has been “supportive of every transition either of us has made within (and outside of) the company and helped us every step of the way. I love what I do and that I’ve continually been given the opportunity to grow in every position I have held.”
Tracy is a project manager for Allstate Tower Field Operations, while Joe is a foreman.
She’s been with Allstate in some capacity since 2013. Tracy and Joe were AST employees for a while before starting their own company and working as tower maintenance subcontractors for Allstate. Since 2019, they have been Allstate employees again.
“We definitely schedule our vacation together easily! That I’m part of the team that organizes the field crew schedules definitely helps,” Tracy said. “We also often brainstorm ideas and find solutions to complications that come up on sites together. We truly enjoy working together on everything personally and professionally.”
Tracy said it’s fantastic working with Joe.
“We make a great team,” she said. “I often miss being on a crew, working directly with and seeing him every day.”
First introduced by friends at a party, Joe and Tracy have been together for nine years.