Spotlight: Jennifer Tessnear— Welder at Hilton Displays
If welding was easy, everyone would do it. However, for Jennifer Tessnear, welding did in fact come easy. Upon walking into her previous job as a rack cleaner, she saw the other men on the floor welding, and it sparked her interest. She was determined to learn the trade and do it herself. Without previous schooling or certification, Jennifer trained with her coworkers and grasped the skill quicker than most. Fast forward to five and a half years later, and Jennifer is one of the lead welders at Hilton Displays.
In addition to welding, Jennifer handles distributing work orders and jobs, locating and allocating materials, and overseeing other welders in her department. There are currently eleven welding/fabricators at Hilton Displays, and each bring a unique skill and personality to the team. “It’s like a family. We do spend so much time together. We practically live here,” says Tessnear.
Jennifer has been with Hilton Displays for almost two years and has contributed to many small- and large-scale projects. Her favorite projects to date are the massive pylon signs for Starbucks. While each pylon varies in size, Jennifer enjoys working on them because she has never built steel circles in her career, and the frames can reach sizes up to twelve feet in diameter which is challenging yet interesting to fabricate.
When asked why she enjoys welding, Jennifer said, “It’s an art form. You get to build stuff from scratch. It’s like sewing with fire.” If sewing with fire is not alarming enough, Jennfier also stated her least favorite part about welding is the flash burn. Flash burn is an eye injury that occurs when looking into the bright ultraviolet light that is produced from welding torches. It is comparable to sunburn but in your eyes. However, Jennifer does not let flash burn prevent her from pursuing a career that brings her joy.
Passionate and hard-working employees, like Jennifer Tessnear, are the reason behind Hilton Displays’ success. Behind every sign is a dedicated employee making as big of an impact as the signage they produce.