Part of Clark Pacific’s mission has been to “Build Different, Achieve More”. With this motto in mind, we find that our employees are upholding and expanding on our core values every day. One of those employees is Thad Saunders, a member of Clark Pacific for over 20 years.
Thad received both his undergraduate and graduate degrees from Washington State in civil engineering and structural engineering, respectively. Since becoming a member of the Clark Pacific family, he has been known around the company as an inventor, creating specialized machines to help solve difficult construction issues. Many of Thad’s contributions have helped to reduce risk, speed up production time, perform architectural feats, and much more. When asked about Thad’s genius, he claims he just listens and strategically puts together the ideas of others. In truth, Thad has encapsulated the “Build Different, Achieve More” way of life.
Sitting on Thad’s desk are many small, metal devices. Though they look unassuming from first glance, they play a large role in simplifying the building process. One small metal disk can measure soil pressures with extreme accuracy. Thad made all the prototypes and final products in his own workshop, and Clark Pacific now uses his creation on nearly every jobsite. He also showed off another device he modeled to lift panels without collapsing. Specifically, this has helped in the honing process, so panels could be made into unique finishes without being broken by the honing machine. This helped more panels be erected in a singular day, with less risk of injury or damage.
One of Thad’s most impressive inventions is a lever system known as “the tadpole.” When precast panels are put in place, they are lifted by a crane to two human receivers. The receivers are several feet above the ground and must catch the panel and guide it into place. The tadpole is a large metal arm that can replace one of the receivers. This reduces the added risk of having two people adjusting the panel at great heights. It also can stabilize panels faster and more accurately.
Innovation is taking things that already exist and assembling them in ways that haven’t been thought of – Rakesh Pandey
Thad’s countless contributions are a model example of how team members at Clark Pacific drive to build different. Whether it’s the production process or the aesthetic of the final product, people like Thad are constantly thinking of new and inventive ways to construct. Having our values spread and reinforced by the work we do helps us become a more proactive company, a better place to work, and a better provider of prefabricated building solutions.