MANAGEMENT

Said Lounis

CEO

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What year did you start at IWEISS: 2019 

What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS? Working with IWEISS is all about the people and the theater industry. When it comes to the IWEISS team, they are second to none: their passion for their work, their loyalty to the company, their commitment to advance the industry both in performance and safety. But overall, they are just nice people to work with. I have always been passionate about stage rigging. I am an engineer, and, naturally, I am attracted to well-engineered products. IWEISS has great products, but more importantly, has a strategy of constant improvement that will keep the company on the leading edge of this market.

If you could meet anyone, dead or alive, who would it be? There are many people I’d love to meet and spend some time with, pick their brains. If I have to pick one, it would be Steve Jobs. I still marvel every day at the incredibly positive image he has created for Apple. These are the only products out there that people happily pay full premium price for a product that is essentially the same as the competitors product. The difference is in the image.

Tell us something we don’t know: I would be pretentious to say I know something that the world at large does not know. But there is something about me that my friends and family know: I love live performance, whether it is music, dance, theater, opera, anything really. I even love to see high school plays.

JENNIFER TANKLEFF

President

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What year did you start at IWEISS:
1994
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
During 25 years, I have been able to meet amazing people in all aspects of the business, from bankers and lawyers to the very best lighting and scenic designers some of whom I count as friends today.
What are three things still on your bucket list?
Going on an African Safari, Seeing the Northern Lights, and Driving across the Country in an RV.
Tell us something we don’t know:
I know the lyrics to almost any song off of The Notorious BIG “Ready to Die” album.

Richard Parks

Vice President – ETCP, FDNY, OSHA 30

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What year did you start at IWEISS:
2001
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
We are a company that can provide endless possibilities to our clients and we are not afraid to take on new challenges.
What’s your favorite line from a movie?
“You shut your mouth when you’re talking to me”. Wedding Crashers
Tell us something we don’t know:
I worked as a blacksmith’s apprentice at the age of 15 at the historical museum of Old Salem in North Carolina

Chuck McCarroll

General Manager

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What year did you start at IWEISS: 2020 

What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS? Working with a diverse group of talents at every level, to bring completed projects to our clients.

Do you havea hidden talent? I am a terrible bass player.

Tell us something we don’t know: I sing grunge rock in the shower.

Administrative

Van Nguyen

Controller

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What year did you start at IWEISS:
2000
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
The energetic staff and being surrounded by pleasant co-workers.
If you could have any one superpower, which would you choose?
Feed people with positive energy.
Tell us something we don’t know:
I’m an open book!

Mercedes Coley

Office Manager

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What year did you start at IWEISS?
2019
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
Great work environment with excellent coworkers and a sense of being a part of something bigger. As a stage manager for over a decade both internationally and in the US this company is a great place to be and feel at home and use my skills and develop new ones.
If everything in your house had to all be one color what would it be?
Teal. With hints of Rose Gold.
Tell us something we don’t know: 
I’m a huge Star Wars nerd….really. And I have a boater’s license as well as can drive anything with four wheels or none at all.

Sharon Dusek

Chicago Project Coordinator

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What year did you start at IWEISS?
2019
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
It’s very exciting to work with such an expert staff that truly cares about this industry. It really shows in the quality of their work and I’m thrilled to be a contributor to this phenomenal team!
What celebrity would you like to meet for a cup of coffee?
Sir Patrick Stewart is one of a few that come to mind. I’m a huge fan of him as an actor, but I’m also drawn to his charity work and activism. Plus he was knighted by the Queen so that’s kinda cool.
Tell us something we don’t know: 
I was a Magician’s Assistant for a number of years and no, I won’t tell you the secrets. I took an Oath of Secrecy!

Production

Jonathan Saunders

Operations Manager

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What year did you start at IWEISS:
2019
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
Working with great people.
What was your favorite sport as a kid?
I hate sports.
Tell us something we don’t know:
I have 2 kids, a soon to be wife, the fattest cat you’ve ever seen and a dog.

Deb Kreiling

Drapery Production Manager

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What year did you start at IWEISS?
2019
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
Being able to see how all of the specialty work is done in this industry and learn the creative process with a great and fun team of people.
If you had a warning label what would yours say?
I am ever the optimist (my BFF calls me Pollyanna) and I am a sixth degree black belt in a Japanese style of Karate.
Tell us something we don’t know: 
I have ridden a bicycle thousands of miles, including riding from Hackensack, NJ to the top of Bear Mountain two times and 250 miles in Alaska.

Carlos Florentino

Drapery Shop Foreman

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What year did you start at IWEISS?
1989
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
Working with different fabrics.
What is your favorite show?
Phantom of the Opera.
Tell us something we don’t know:
I love to cook!

Ryan Freeman

Inventory & Logistics Coordinator

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What year did you start at IWEISS?
2020
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
My favorite part has to be the pace and positivity that everyone carries. It makes for a great environment to come to work everyday!
If you could be part of any music group past or present what would it be?
I would have to say the Beatles, I’ve loved their stuff since I was a little kid.
Tell us something we don’t know:
My favorite hobbies are kayaking and camping, I go as much as possible year round.

Marketing and sales

Jaclyn Mienkiewicz

Marketing and Sales Coordinator

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What year did you start at IWEISS?
2014
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
I love the positive and collaborative work environment where everyone is always willing to help each other out.
Do you have any strange phobias?
I have Escalaphobia. People think I’m trying to be healthy by using the stairs but I’m really just trying to avoid escalators at all costs.
Tell us something we don’t know:
Long distance running, pizza and musicals are a few of my favorite things.

Bill Knapp

Head of Estimation

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What year did you start at IWeiss?
2016
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
Working with a quality group of people who all care about delivering quality products.
What were your favorite activities as a kid?
Riding my bike and playing baseball.
Tell us something we don’t know:

jeff Parvin

Sales Executive

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What year did you start at IWEISS?
2019
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
Getting a chance to help entertainment pros and amateurs at all levels across multiple disciplines.
What is your most unusual talent?
Accents have always come easy to me. I guess I’ve lived and worked in so many places, I catch myself sliding into whatever I’m hearing on the phone.
Tell us something we don’t know:
As I kid, my favorite part of the rodeo was getting to chase the greased pig to try and pull the ribbon from its tail.

 

Project Management

Russ Dusek

Project Manager – ETCP, OSHA 10

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What year did you start at IWEISS?
2013
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
The wide and seemingly boundless range of expertise and experience of the people I get to work with each day.
If you had to eat one meal every day for the rest of your life, what would it be?
The idea of this is devastating to me.
Tell us something we don’t know:
The only thing I’ve ever done on a golf course is snowmobile.

Shannon SUllivan

Project Manager – ETCP, OSHA 10

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What year did you start at IWEISS:
2010
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
The constant challenge of new projects, and the smart team here to work with on each one.
If you were an animal what would you be?
A red panda. I am also a vicious omnivore and the only living species of my genus.
Tell us something we don’t know:
I keep an emergency tiara in my car.

Andy Kotarba

Project Manager – ETCP, OSHA

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What year did you start at IWEISS?
2017
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
My favorite part, is the wonderful people that work here and how we can all come together as a team to complete amazing projects.
What was your favorite pet and why?
I prefer cats, they are an excellent balance between companionship and their own independence.
Tell us something we don’t know:
I loathe grapefruit.

REE SEMINOLE

Project Manager – ETCP 

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What year did you start at IWEISS?
2017
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
Working on new projects.
Which cartoon character would you most like to switch lives with?
Steven Universe.
Tell us something we don’t know:
I have been to Burningman 7 times.

Geoff Stock

Project Manager 

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What year did you start at IWEISS?
2020
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
For many years I’ve known IWEISS as a company oriented toward providing solutions to their customer’s challenges.  I’m excited to join a team that is geared toward solving unique problems as well as innovative products.
If you were a dog what breed would you be and why? 
If I had to choose I would be a Brittany.  We’ve had a Brittany for a more than a couple years now and his ability to instantaneously switch between a dead sleep and sprinting around the yard (even as he is begins to get move into his golden years) continues to surprise me.  
Tell us something we don’t know:
Neil Armstrong stood on the moon only 66 years after the Wright brothers first flew at Kitty Hawk.  Also, I can sometimes take things literally when I really know better.

Engineering

Andy Naftz

Engineering Manager

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What year did you start at IWEISS?
2019
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
I enjoy drafting and rigging. Working here is the best of both worlds.
Do you think a hot dog is a sandwich and why?
Hot Dogs are a subcategory of sandwich. By definition it can be considered a sandwich since it is two slices of bread or rather a split bun with filling inside. However, when I am at a ball game, I don’t order a hot dog with the added “sandwich” and the concession stand signs don’t say “hot dog sandwiches.” So I think we should let the hot dog secede from all the other sandwiches and not let it be defined by the what’s on the outside, but what is on the inside.
Tell us something we don’t know: 
I have an injury due to an acrobatic accident. I used to perform for a children’s theater in California. During a rehearsal, I did a dive roll and tore my AC joint in my shoulder.

Jeremy Reimer

Technical Designer

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What year did you start at IWEISS?
2019
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
My favorite part about working at IWEISS is that I am able to work on automated systems as well as the variety of engineering challenges to solve.
Where would you haunt if you were a ghost?
If I were a ghost I would haunt a hardware store. There would be a lot of fun ghostly pranks I could pull in there.
Tell us something we don’t know: 
I am a self-taught guitar and bass player.

Ben Marson

Mechanical Engineer

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What year did you start at IWEISS?
2020
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
My life-long passion is to engineer devices used for storytelling and spectacle, which is why I love working at IWEISS.
What’s your go to karaoke Song?

My go to karaoke song is Earth Wind & Fire’s classic masterpiece: “September.”

Tell us something we don’t know: 
Ever since I was little I’ve had an active imagination. I’m now using it to write a novel in my spare time!

Jake McDaniel

Mechanical Engineer

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What year did you start at IWEISS?
2019
What’s your favorite part about working at IWEISS?
My favorite part about working at IWEISS is the variety of projects I get to work on. Each project is always different and requires different approaches often involving custom machinery which makes the work challenging and rewarding.
If you could live anywhere in the universe where would it be?
I’ve always been interested in the idea of living and working outside the United States for an extended period of time, perhaps in Western Europe or Japan. Other than that, I think it would be fun to be involved with the first theatrical production on Mars.
Tell us something we don’t know: 
One of the coolest things I’ve gotten to do since working in the entertainment industry is having my body 3D scanned to be used as a reference for a mold at an animatronics supplier. The mold was used to create a figure of Dick Van Dyke as Bert in Mary Poppins. I got to keep the foam head cast which is pretty cool to have.

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