WWJ Closeup, March 2020

SARA GANN
President
Unitra Inc.
Stafford, Texas

BEST ADVICE I EVER RECEIVED?
Treat people the way you wish to be treated. Faith and family were the focus for my father. He instilled in me the importance of treating everyone—customers, employees, vendors, and all people—respectfully. He used to say, “We all put our pants on the same way” and “eat from the same table.”

ON MY DESK RIGHT NOW?
Probably too many things. They include IEC 60335 update compliance testing reports for our centrifugal pumps, new marketing literature to review, bids for various work, and maintenance-related projects, and of course, my father Nami’s original desk plaque!

IF YOU COULD CHANGE ONE THING ABOUT YOUR PROFESSIONAL SELF?
Find more time to expand my field knowledge and keep up with the ever-changing technology landscape. Thankfully, I’m blessed to work with my husband, John, who balances me in many ways; and is also a chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear sergeant major in the U.S. Armed Forces.

GREATEST CHALLENGE FACING MANUFACTURERS OF PUMP SYSTEMS?
Maintaining integrity up and down the production and supply chain: from product compliance, product certification, responsible sourcing, and strong distributor relationships. We’re fortunate to have relationships built over decades that have enabled our small family business to remain competitive. Unitra still hand tests pumps and sources from domestic foundries.

WHAT ARE YOU HEARING MOST FROM YOUR CUSTOMERS?
“I’m glad you have it in stock, ship it ASAP.” We produce and maintain an extensive stock of all parts as well as completely assembled units. Since most of our products are made in-house, we can supply our customers quickly.

THOUGHTS ON WATER PRESSURE BOOSTING CHALLENGES?
It can be complicated, but communication is key to ensure that the full scope of the project is understood and equipped with the appropriate
systems to provide the optimal solution to meet the customer’s needs.

YOUR COMPANY IS CELEBRATING ITS 50TH ANNIVERSARY THIS YEAR. WHAT STANDS OUT?
Honestly, my father and his vision for the future of our industry. My father was passionate about manufacturing quality products in the United States and exporting them all over the world. He invested in all the different manufacturing processes wherein he developed a sophisticated business model that has stood the test of time.