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Employee Spotlight – Dave Olson

Welcome to the Employee Spotlight

Welcome to another edition of the Mahoney ‘Employee Spotlight’.  This spotlight is our way to reflect on and draw positive attention to the most important assets of Mahoney – its employees! A functioning business cannot function without a solid team in place, and we are extra proud of that team.

Every couple of weeks, an employee will be nominated and featured.  Next up is Dave Olson.

What is your role at the company? How long have you been with Mahoney, and what position did you start at?

D: My position now is Senior Operations Manager/Managed Services. I have been with Mahoney for 36 years. My first role was unloading trucks in the yard and chase driver.  I’ll never forget my first day on the job.  John Mahoney took me into the yard and told me to stick my hand and arm into a barrel of grease and pull out all of the plastic bags. I then had to squeeze all of the grease from it in order to throw out the plastic bags.  I knew grease was in my veins from that day forward. I’ve loved it ever since! 

How do you balance your career at Mahoney with family life?

D: My family knows that they are the most important thing in my life.  They are very happy for me that I love my job and that I enjoy going to work every day.  They also know that whenever we go to a restaurant, I will be in the back looking to see who services their grease!

If you could switch your job with anyone else within Mahoney, whose job would you want?

D: I love what I do. I wouldn’t change it.  

What do you like most about Mahoney?

D: This is a two part answer for me. The first part – I have always felt the Mahoney family connection from Jim Mahoney and John Mahoney, along with the rest of their family members.  They are a wonderful family! The second part – I have always liked the people in the company that I have had the pleasure to work with, learn and grow with.  My boss, Vito DiPietra, has taught me so much as well.  Thanks Vito!!  The respect level of the Mahoney family and the Mahoney company is tremendous and makes coming to work every day a pleasure.

What is on your wish list for the next five years at ME?

D: I am very excited to be an active part of the growth at Mahoney for the next five years and beyond. It has been amazing to have the opportunity to be with the company and experience the growth that the company has had.  I am looking forward to the growth and opportunities we will be experiencing in the future!

What has been your favorite project that you worked on here at Mahoney?

D: I have had so many projects that I have enjoyed over the years, it’s hard to choose just one. I think looking back four projects led me to my current position. The first would be sales in Indianapolis, Iowa and Kentucky. Second, managing the UCO department in Joliet.  Third, managing Joliet trap. Fourth, was Preferred Oil.  The experiences in those areas really helped expand my business skills, which I get to use every day in our Phoenix Operation and Mahoney Managed Traps. I am very grateful to have had the opportunities I have been given with Mahoney.

What drew you to Mahoney when you initially started and how has the company changed since then?

D: I was working at Steak ‘n Shake and I got to know the Mahoney Driver that picked up our grease, Ron Oswald.  Ron told me one day that Mahoney was hiring drivers and I should apply. The rest is history!  I not only went to work for a great company, I had a great friend, Ron.  Mahoney Environmental has always been a great company. John has taken the company to the next level with tremendous growth and made the company even greater! 

Before working at Mahoney, what was the most interesting or unusual job you had?

D: I wouldn’t call them interesting or unusual but they gave a young kid like me spending money!  Flipping burgers at Steak ‘n Shake and washing cars at a car wash.

Share your proudest moment since coming on board at Mahoney?

D: I have had so many proud moments working at Mahoney but if I had to pick just one, I think it would be putting up the Mahoney sign in Phoenix when we opened the Phoenix operation. 

Miscellaneous Questions (non-job related)

Do you have an office nickname?

D: DaveyO.

Do you have a favorite or inspirational quote to share?

D: You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough. 

Best vacation you have been on?

D: Italy, best trip ever! 

If you could change careers right now, what would you choose:

D: Charter fishing boat captain. 

If you could interview one person in the world (dead or alive), who would it be and why?

D: Johnny Cash. He lived quite a life. 

Motto or personal mantra?

D:  A little less talking. A little more doing.  

If you were stuck on an island, what three things would you bring (assuming basics are provided for you)?

D: My family, a fishing pole and a huge container of ice cream!

People would be surprised if they knew what about you?

D: That I love doing woodworking.  When I’m not at work, I’m in my shop at home making tables, shelves, lamps, etc. from wood.  It relaxes me. 

Finally….three words that best describe you:

D: Hardworking, open-minded and fun.  


Thank you, Dave! We appreciate your contribution to this interview AND especially to all you do for Mahoney Environmental!

Want to nominate someone? Submit your nomination by emailing [email protected]. Please title the email “Employee Spotlight Nomination”.

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