Judy Fishman · The Way I See It · The Way I See It · Jan 2014
This year marks LMT’s and LAB DAY Chicago’s 30th birthdays and we plan to celebrate all year long. Come celebrate with us in the pages of LMT, at LAB DAY and online as we take a walk through...See more 30 years of history.
Online, we’re taking our cue from a popular internet trend called Throwback Thursday during which users post old photos. We’re calling ours Throwback Thirty and will be posting photos and snippets from our 30-year history with you every Thursday on The Bridge at LMTmag.com/ThrowbackThirty. But to make it really fun, we want you to join in!
We’d like you to share your recollections of the stuff we post and also post your own “throwback” photos of life in your lab, photos from industry events or stories from the past. Let’s work together, as we always do, to create a living history of all we’ve created and done as the decision makers we are!*
What I didn’t realize 30 years ago was that so many of you were on the same page I was on: embarking on a new path as an entrepreneur; in many ways, it’s not just LMT’s milestone—it’s yours, too!
During the last quarter of 2013, I traveled across the country and back. I visited some old industry friends and made new ones. Like me, many of them didn’t know exactly what we were getting into when we first started out but we had conviction, knowledge, the all-important characteristic of perseverance and, most of all, the intention to build a business, and here we all are.
I have to acknowledge, particularly, some friends who’ve been comrades in pursuit of our respective dreams from the start: Michael Kulwiec, Marc Daichman, Tom Bormes, Jim Gorgol, Rob Gitman, Kamilla Siekierski, Jim Glidewell, Steve Severy, Josh Green, Harold Burdette, Max Schulze, Dan Smith, Gerry Mariacher, Robert Berger, Kris Kersten and the late Kevin Dillon. These guys gave me tremendous help and support as I navigated my way into the wonderful world of dental technology and I want to thank them publicly for this!
There are, of course, many others who were there with me at the beginning and who are still here now, who’ve followed their passion, set things in motion and continue to enjoy the fruits of their continuing labor.
We’re an amazing team—you, the dental laboratory decision makers; you, the manufacturers and suppliers; and us, LMT—and that gives us the ability to deliver much-needed, useful data and insights to help your business prosper. We intend to continue doing so and want to say thanks. We are filled with gratitude to play such a role in this marketplace but we couldn’t do any of it without you!
What really struck me during my trip out West is how connected everyone is with one another in our field. Every lab and manufacturer has a rich and colorful history and it seems like, at one point or another, so many of you worked with or for one another somewhere along the way! Competitors are also cooperators, technicians are also manufacturers, employees became employers and sometimes they even switch places with one another!
What also struck me is that the economic slowdown of the last five years has hit almost every pocket of the country. It was evident on the streets we drove down and in the cities we stopped in. It gives us all the more reason to appreciate what we have weathered and how resilient our community is.
The view 30 years out gives us what we call “30/30 Hindsight.” We don’t have the same kind of vision we had when we were in our 20s and 30s and starting out. That vision was filled with anticipation of the challenge and what we might be capable of creating.
Our vision now has wisdom, gratitude, humility and loads of experience. I’ve been told many times that folks love working with LMT because every staff member here exudes excellence in delivering customer service, editorial content and phenomenal LAB DAY events. It’s what we do, year after year: in print, in person and online.
By now we can comfortably say we have hindsight. We know who we are. We know who you are and we are thrilled to keep on truckin’ down this road with you every single day.
*In the February issue of LMT, we’re featuring industry highlights as reported in the pages of LMT over the last 30 years. It’s like a mini-series on the history of our community! Join us: share your memories and photos at LMTmag.com/ThrowbackThirty and they might also appear in an upcoming issue of LMT.