Resilience. When you read, see, or hear that word, what do you think of? Who do you think of? For me, it’s Hamed Seresty, VP Operations, Rosati Ice, who oversees purchasing, manufacturing, logistics, storage, shipping, and moreover, customer satisfaction for this 110-year-old Italian Ice manufacturer in suburban Philadelphia.
First off, where did his resilience come from? Who sparked it? Growing up in Iran with his older brother and younger sister, Hamed saw his parents deal with endless hardships and their “not giving up” attitude. No matter what the hardship, his parents always “managed to see the light at the end of the tunnel.” (That’s admirable and we all can learn this life lesson.)
“My parents always encouraged us to go after our dreams and supported what we needed.” For example, along with his brother, Hamed started a business manufacturing equipment for other manufacturers. Meanwhile, his dad had a business and assigned a part of his building to their venture.
Hamed, his former wife and eight-month-old baby son came here in 2013. He was determined to provide his family with a better life than what they left, despite numerous odds – no family connections, language barriers, all the while learning the culture and the job market. Again, his resilience was put to the test, but Hamed came out smiling and landed his dream job in 2015 AND became a U.S. citizen in 2018. (I was blessed and proud to witness the event.)
After a few odd jobs, Hamed applied for Rosati’s Production Manager Assistant job via Craig’s List. Rich immediately realized his value and within two weeks, promoted him to Production Manager, a year later to Plant Engineer and in early 2016 to VP Operations. Hamed admits, “I started with Rosati just to pay my bills, then I fell in love with the people and found a great man to work with.”
Hamed’s education has served him well in his career. He earned a Bachelor’s and Master’s in Mechanical Engineering with an emphasis on production and manufacturing. “The manufacturing process from A to Z,” states Hamed. “I love to study and continuing my education is important to me.” With a huge smile on his face, he shared with me that he recently started the MBA program at West Chester University. “It’s meaningful to me personally.”
Hamed continues, “Try to do right by other people, our family and ourselves,” is his personal motto. And it certainly shows in how he treats his family, friends, coworkers, vendors, and customers.
Hamed’s resiliency was certainly tested during COVID, but like all his challenges, it “taught me good lessons.” He attributes Rich’s positive attitude and – like his parents’ – the “not giving up” mentality for sustaining him during this stressful time.
According to Rich Trotter, President, Rosati Ice, “Hamed is the heart and soul of Rosati’s operations. During the pandemic, Hamed deftly kept the plant running and our people’s spirits high as we navigated through the most difficult challenge of our century-old business’ existence.”
Hard days are gonna go. Resilient people are gonna stay. (I think we need that on a plaque in our homes and offices.)
One of Hamed’s greatest accomplishments has been the process to bring state-of-the-art technology to a plant built in the mid ‘50’s. After studying, evaluating, and interviewing manufacturers, in 2018, three continuous freezers were installed to replace 24 batch freezers run by four employees. The results are outstanding! The new technology needs no manpower, uses 30% less electricity, and increases production by 100%. Who else but a gifted, determined, mechanical engineer could have accomplished that, all the while getting orders out on time? (I am blown away by Hamed’s brilliant mind!) Hamed admits, “All hands were on deck during the transition.”
When Hamed is not at work, he is either ON or IN his boat. Currently, he is refurbishing the engine. “During a tough time, boating helped me mentally,” he confides. “I enjoy taking my son, Parham, out for a few hours on the Delaware River.”
The Rosati family wishes Hamed and his son nothing but smooth sailing. Let’s see where the family tradition of resiliency will take them. And Rosati Ice.