Host Terminals, Operator, Baton Rouge, LA
One month after we began work at the new Louis Dreyfus grain terminal in New Orleans, Operator Kim Kaiser did some detective work and learned Host was where he wanted to be.
Kim is a perfect fit for Host. He has a dual background in maintenance mechanics and heavy equipment operations, and he has seven years of experience in the maritime industry. “I worked both offshore and on the River, and I did it all—from inspections of facilities and machines to working the equipment that moves the cargo,” he explains.
He was hired in March of this year. “I knew this would be the place for me. Being a brand-new facility means there are lots of opportunities for growth and promotion.”
Along with the opportunities that Host offers, Kim loves the relationships he has developed. “When you’re spending twelve hours each day with people, you become more than a coworker. You become family.” He appreciates that the managers and the crews work hard to really make everyone feel welcomed.
Kim spends his days at the terminal operating heavy equipment that loads cargo onto ships to be sent all around the world. “I like the days where I can be in the crane one moment, then hop in a dozer, then use a man-lift,” he says. He enjoys that his job is so versatile, but his favorite thing about being an operator is the rewarding work. “We all bring in our different background knowledge and experiences, and we work together as a team to get a job done. When we sit back at the end of our shifts, we’re all really proud of our work.”
Kim says the most important skill required to be an operator is effective communication. “We’re constantly communicating with each other and the ship crew. We all have to be on the same page at all times.” Having a high level of safety conscientiousness and being a team player are also essential skills for the job, he adds.
When he’s not working, Kim spends a lot of time with his motorcycle club. He has been riding for 15 years now and is a strong advocate for motorcycle safety. He and his organization are active in the community and around the nation, campaigning for their signature program “Look Twice and Save a Life.” They also do a lot of community service, from holding bike events to offering tutoring services at their clubhouse and holding fundraisers for underprivileged youth. “Bikers have always had this bad boy image,” he says, “But behind the scenes, we’re lawyers, counselors, operators, and professionals out here doing things for our community.”
Kim’s favorite thing about Host is that it’s a growing company. “We’ve done great numbers so far in Baton Rouge and I hope Host continues to expand along the River,” he says. “This company has given me a lot of opportunity, so I hope the same for it. I can’t wait to see it continue to grow.”