Happy Retirement, Billie Wallingford!

Billie Wallingford, a machinist on our manufacturing team, has worked at STOBER for more than 10 years and will be retiring on April 26.

Billie Wallingford Retirement

Billie Wallingford, a machinist on our manufacturing team, has worked at STOBER for more than 10 years and will be retiring on April 26.  Billie says he feels lucky to have been hired at STOBER after being laid off from a 33-year career at Browning’s in 2013 at the age of 54.

“At the time, I was worried about who’d hire someone my age,” Billie said.  “But I was only laid off for six weeks—enough time to collect just one unemployment check—and I appreciate STOBER giving me a chance.”

Billie said he loves the people at STOBER who make up the great atmosphere and working conditions. He is especially thankful for the support STOBER employees receive to encourage their growth, which is something he hasn’t always had in previous positions.

“I’m a person who accepts change and I don’t want to be in a rut,” Billie said, “and here at STOBER, they get you anything you need for your job and encourage everyone to grow.”

And grow we have—Billie was hired soon after the Maysville facility expanded, moving the assembly team to a second building to enlarge space for both manufacturing and assembly. “I truly got to see manufacturing and assembly grow to what they are today,” he said.

During his time on the STOBER manufacturing team, Billie has had a hand in machining, milling, boring, and OD grinding. OD grinding has been his favorite role because he likes the challenge of the tightest tolerance. Despite the name, OD grinding is not just about shaping the outside diameter (OD) of a part—it also requires the object being ground to have a central axis of rotation. This makes OD grinding capable of great precision, requiring Billie’s favorite challenge, tight tolerances.

After his retirement, Billie plans to take care of his mother, who turns 97 this month, still lives alone, and cooks him dinner every day.  Other than that, he’ll take care of anything his family needs, go fishing, and get his boat out for the first time in three years.

His advice to new STOBER employees? “If you haven’t worked anywhere else, you don’t know what you’re coming into.  Truthfully, as far as machining and everything else, it’s the best in Maysville.  Good hours, good pay, good benefits.”  Billie has enjoyed his time at STOBER so much that he has encouraged his grandson to put in an application.

Billie’s last day at STOBER is April 26 and we are happy to help him celebrate his retirement! 

If you’d like more information about starting a rewarding career at STOBER, check out our careers page at the link below.