On April 12, 1999, we were in the midst of the Y2K scare, "I'm Your Angel" by R. Kelly and Celine Dion topped the charts, Bill Clinton was cited for contempt of court, and Boxcar Willie (King of the Road) died. But, there was a bright spot in the news that day! Bill Barnat joined our team! We are very grateful to have him on our team, and want to take some time out to honor all that Bill has brought to us over the years.
John Steffen, Bill's manager, reflected on some of Bill's contributions to CIVCO. "Going back to some of the earlier years, I understand Bill would break out the guitar as lead entertainment for the Medtec events? This was before my time, so I might need some fact checking from the broader team here. But, to speak to Bill's more recent R&D accomplishments, the early work on the Solstice device really set the direction for this program. Bill worked closely with Sean and engineering over the first year with many clinical visits and concept/design iterations. Bill is now working on a few other critical R&D programs which will lead into more advancements in care for CIVCO customers." Bills work as a Product Specialist in Research and Development, and with Product Management, has been invaluable to the patients CIVCO serves.
All of us who know Bill know how much we appreciate having him as a colleague. John said, "The comment I often hear is how genuinely kind Bill is to everyone around him. He cares about the well-being of the people he works with, and he is committed to improving the patient experience. He also has an uncanny ability to spin almost any normal comment into a comedic bit - bringing about a lot of laughs and a few pleasant eyerolls along the way!" John also talked about the ways Bill really reflects CIVCO's Values. In addition to his focus on our patients, his passion for our mission, and his genuine focus on people, "Bill also works directly with many of our clinical providers, distribution partners, and OEM partners. He is known to ask a lot of great questions, really working to uncover the interests for these groups."
Ronda Pottebaum also shared her thoughts on Bill. "There are so many things to say about life with Bill Barnat. I have known this man for all of his 20 years of service at CIVCO RT and he is definitely the perfect example of being humble & kind! This man has brought so much more to the company than just innovative products. He has also brought with him the shining example of being customer focused, caring and genuinely concerned about the well-beings of others before himself. His energy & outlook on life are contagious in the best ways possible, even when dealing with the difficult situations. He always has a word of encouragement and a good joke to accompany. I have had the pleasure to travel the world with him and enjoy so many experiences. I will always treasure these moments and memories. All the best to you, William Barnat and cheers to the next 20!"
This look at Bill's life at CIVCO wouldn't be complete without hearing from the man, himself. Bill shared his reflections on his 20 years with CIVCO, and said that when he considers his time here, he thinks about how fortunate he's been to be able to work this long for our company. "How special it is to be surrounded by great people, great products, and great purpose. (Yes, I know this sounds like I've read this off the wall in Coralville, but, it's true.) I also realize how rare it is these days to experience this kind of longevity within a company."
Bill feels a certain pride every time he is welcomed in a clinic while representing CIVCO. "I'm proud that our customers respect our company, and that I've been able to play a small part in that." In classic Bill style, he also shares that he is proud of the fact that he's never been arrested or totaled a rental during his 20 years with CIVCO.
We asked Bill what his favorite memory is from his time at CIVCO. "I've had so many great memories with my co-workers, with wonderful places visited. But if I were to name my most favorite impactful memory, that would be on a CIVCO visit to China many years ago. As I was leaving the clinic with our distributor, there was an elderly Zumu- a grandmother- in the clinic's hallway, holding her Uniframe mask, just smiling at me. She had no idea who I was, nor I her. But at that moment, I was made very aware of the important connection we shared, and of the reach and impact our products have throughout our world. To this day, that memory still serves as a mission reminder for me."
When asked to choose a favorite value, Bill picked "People". "The people who make up our Company, our customers, and our patients have made these past 20 years extremely rewarding. To have so many co-workers become dear friends has been an incredible blessing for me."
So, why has Bill chosen to stick around for the last 20 years? "I have always said that we have customers who remain loyal because they know CIVCO personally cares about their needs and goals. Well, in a related way, CIVCO has always also shown me that same good measure."
Bill feels that the most exciting innovations in his time at CIVCO have been IMRT, IGRT, and Hypo-fractionation. He also said the advent of carbon fiber was revolutionary within our product line, enabling CIVCO to make game-changing products that really helped maximize these technological advances.
To help celebrate his 20th anniversary, Bill will receive a gift card and a donation to the cancer charity of his choice. Bill chose the Donna M. Saunders Cancer Foundation because of the work they do for our veterans. He said, "Studies have shown that women who served in the military have increased risks for breast cancer. They bring free breast screening to homeless veterans."
Thank you, Bill, for 20 years of superb service to our providers and their patients, and for your never-ending passion for our mission!