Enjoying the finer things in life: good food and wine, travelling to Paris and Rome, things could have been very different for Paul if his love of football had turned into a career. Instead Paul has developed his expertise and proficiency in the field of accountancy, gaining valuable experience in sectors as diverse as pharmaceuticals, manufacturing, hospitality and now environmental. Still keen to keep himself fit and healthy Paul has other talents that fall outside sports; dining etiquette (Silver Service Waiting Skills) and diplomacy, "My favourite food is my Mother-in-Law's dumpling," – no wonder he has to keep up his gym membership!
Yvonne has almost 30 years' experience working in the environmental research and monitoring sector and has considerable expertise with our classical soil sampling and monitoring range of equipment including sediment sampling techniques and percussion drilling routines. She has practical experience working in the field with much of our product range but these days can usually be found in the office where she is responsible for the smooth running of UK Operations. A party animal at heart, outside of Van Walt, Yvonne has an active, fun filled social life with friends and family.
The customer is at the heart of everything we do at Van Walt and Tracey's role is to ensure that everything we do helps our customers and potential customers find us; have confidence in our equipment and service; understand how the equipment works and how it can solve their needs; be reassured that once the equipment is bought or rented we are still there to deliver help, support and share our expertise – basically to ensure the Van Walt experience is so good that you will want to come back time and time again. This means taking the rough with the smooth – your feedback to Tracey and the team is vital in ensuring we consistently deliver what you want.
Sales & Marketing Assistant
With a Business Studies degree from Bournemouth University, Fleur has bucket loads of theory she can now put into practice in her role at Van Walt. Bringing a fresh take on marketing best practice and social media experience, with years of use almost as big as her age; Fleur will be injecting fun and enthusiasm into the Van Walt brand. A year spent in industry, working in sales, marketing and web design has given her the work ethos she needs when it comes to being part of the Van Walt team. Already an auntie, Fleur’s hobbies like travelling and socializing with her friends, means there’s no holding her back – watch out for blogs from her planned visits around the globe!
With a head for process management and procedures, Jess manages quality & environmental compliance throughout the organisation and she is responsible for assessing and suggesting improvements to internal business processes. Jess joined Van Walt in 2012 supporting the marketing and sales functions, her creative streak and passion for design is something we constantly tap into – the jewel of level loggers could get very interesting!
Head of R&D
Lewis has a background in engineering, hydraulics and mechanics. Lewis manages everything technical at Van Walt; he is at his happiest rebuilding and rewiring environmental equipment and a large proportion of his time is spent managing the R&D department, developing new products such as our very own vanwaltCONNECT. He is involved in special projects all around the world which means lots of travelling - lucky Lewis! It is no surprise that in his free time he is still making robots, riding dirt bikes and driving muscle cars, this usually means plenty of time stripping and rebuilding engines!
Sales & Customer Relationship Manager
Ikky has been with the company for well over a decade now, and has amassed a wealth of knowledge on groundwater monitoring and soil research equipment. Ikky has been involved as a key member of the Van Walt sales team. Through the years she’s developed the network of customers and is widely known for her professionalism; often laced with banter and a topping of cheekiness. Her rapport with our customers is inspiring as is her leadership of the team that works for her.
With administrative skills developed in the insurance industry together with the experience of bringing up a family, Debbie has a life degree in multi-tasking; communications; research; organisation; managing people; negotiations, collaboration and diplomacy; plus budget management and procurement. She is a mother and proud grandmother of three! Debbie still loves to cook and bake treats for her family but her real passion is travel, at every opportunity she goes off touring somewhere new. In her role at Van Walt she will have less time to enjoy the open road; now she has the challenge of looking after her new Van Walt family and customers; ensuring orders are processed efficiently, invoices dispatched!
Rental & Repairs Manager
Stripping down engines, dismantling cars, motorbikes and anything else mechanical then putting everything back together with an obsessive attention to detail that ensures it performs better than before is in Reece's genes and why he is suited to his role at Van Walt. A 'need to know' attitude means nothing is left to chance and a planned methodical approach to problem solving helps him get to the bottom of 'whatever is thrown at him' in our repairs department and rental room. In addition, he is trained in data retrieval to ensure, wherever possible, no customers' data is ever lost. Reece the Equipment Engineer is far removed from Reece the adrenaline junkie, who spends his free time competing in many forms of motorcycle racing and who enjoys skydiving, but as he is trained in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and mixed martial arts who's going to stop him!
Technical Sales, Solutions and Support
With a degree in electrical engineering and more than 13 years of professional experience, Stefan has solved technical challenges for customers around the world, in the fields of heavy industry, automation, plant construction and general electrical engineering. In his new role Stefan will focus on soil, aggregates and concrete moisture measurements. For some of these new sectors for Van Walt, he will approach it logically; breaking new ground, building relationships with customers and providing advice and support.
Rental & Repairs Technician
With a four year electrical apprenticeship under his belt, Tom adds skill and expertise and is an integral member of the rental and repairs team. He is responsible for making sure all equipment is prepared and calibrated within spec ready for our customers site works. His years of experience is invaluable and he is always at the end of the phone to assist with customers technical queries and offer any training required. Tom is Van Walt's first campanologist, but doesn't confine his musical ability to bell ringing - he's also a keen percussionist and has played with several bands. Add to that a passion for hiking, climbing and reading Tolkien it's hardly surprising that his football team of choice is York City Football Club – he's a Minsterman!
Trainee Engineer & ISO Administrator
What to look for in a Trainee with a brief as broad as Engineer and ISO Administrator – attitude, attitude, attitude and Max has plenty of that! Positive, courteous with a keen enthusiasm for anything new. Max calls it: "Enjoy life the best you can, work hard, continually learn, have a laugh while you're at it, be a nice person and nice things will come your way"! With experience in engineering it's no surprise to see Max taking apart a datalogger or soil moisture probe and the next minute pouring over a spreadsheet. Attention to detail is important in his role at Van Walt, just as it is when performing a Alpha Flip on his skateboard or finding just the right helmet for his next Viking Re-enactment!
Joint Managing Director
David, eldest son of Kaja and Vincent van Walt, joins the business with a wealth of knowledge in management, business continuity and service delivery. He has 21 years of invaluable big-business experience – key for Van Walt’s future success. Now is his time to make the sale and distribution of environmental research equipment his passion. With the support of the team, across all four office locations, he will be developing strategies and opportunities to innovate and grow the business. He will ensure we profitably meet the needs of our customers with equipment and services they trust, to deliver the information they need. Sounds simple. David is going to need all his experience, intellect and parenting skills for the challenge. Will it be interesting and varied - yes and also very exciting!
Sales: Business Opportunities Researcher
After working for Van Walt during her college and uni days, Rosie took some time off to explore other areas of interest, but fifteen years later she is now back as our business opportunities researcher! Rosie is always looking for new opportunities to help develop the business and company brand, and can be found meeting and greeting old and new customers alike. Rosie is also one of Van Walt South Africa’s directors, and has been there from the beginning to establish and setup our new office. She has daily contact with VW SA, and always eagerly awaits her next visit to this beautiful country. Rosie is determined to establish and maintain strong lasting relationships with customers, suppliers and colleagues in all corners of the earth!
Director & Technical Sales
Vincent has many years' experience in the environmental field – more than he is prepared to admit to! More than 30 years ago he and Kaja, his wife, established Van Walt to fill a gap in the market for equipment that provides consistent, accurate results - equipment that sets the standard for soil and groundwater monitoring and research. Today he remains equally as committed and still spends the majority of his time sharing his expertise on groundwater field techniques, percussion drilling, soil moisture measurement and mineral exploration with customers at home and abroad. As an enthusiastic sailor he has learnt to appreciate the combination of quality and craftsmanship to create something that is both functional and beautiful.
Montse, daughter of the founder of Analab, Jaume Ampuy, has accumulated much experience over the years she has worked in the business. Dedicated to the environmental sector, Montse is as at home with augers, soil moisture meters, water level loggers and chemical risk management as most women are with shopping! She has made the sale and distribution of environmental research equipment her life's work particularly since taking over the management of the business in 2012. Her ambition is to see Van Walt as the preferred choice for environmental consultants and researchers throughout Spain. As of 2014 she has taken on an additional role as Senior Manager of the Van Walt Group with the particular responsibility for staff motivation, performance and wellbeing of the group. Montse's other passion is shoes, she has had an enduring love affair with fabulous footwear for longer than she has been at Van Walt – and shoes, as every woman knows, are the best therapy for any stress in your life!
Sales Support & Administration
After 20 years looking after the administration of Analab, Candi knows each and every detail of the business from our customers through to all our suppliers. She has become a specialist in hand augering as a result of her drive to learn more about the equipment we supply and is ready to share her knowledge with you. Candi will give you advice for your hand sampling needs, suggesting the specific auger that will best fit your needs, Candi is always happy to hear from you. Cheerful and friendly; in her spare time you will find her swimming, diving or dancing salsa.
Senior Technical Specialist
With an extensive theoretical background on black holes and all things related to the Universe, Ramon has spent the last 20 years learning about the whole process of analysis of samples, from sampling itself to the most advanced soil analysis techniques, including sample preparation. He can now advise you on equipment for all your groundwater monitoring and soil sampling and analysis needs, making certain you have the right equipment and maximum return on your investment. Always ready to take a risk, he is a compulsive karaoke singer, enjoys fooling around with model trains and is a keen mountain climber (when his teenage daughters allow him!).
Sales: Telemetry & Sensors
Gimena describes herself as a vocational and professional geologist – with a passion to understand the landscape around her. Ideal qualifications for anyone involved in specifying and installing sensors and telemetry to monitor the environment. This together with her "can-do", positive attitude to life, and whatever it throws at you, stand her in good stead to deal with the most challenging of situations – always with a smile. Not content with continuously working to find the right solutions at work, Gimena also likes to experiment in the kitchen, constantly developing new recipes; in between restoring the furniture her and her partner will use to enjoy their meals!
Rental & Field Work Specialist
Born in Switzerland but with a passion for hiking and kite surfing – where else would you end up but New Zealand! Andrea arrived via Canada, where she picked up a Master’s in Microbiology and Quito in Ecuador, gaining valuable teaching experience as well as a love for salsa dancing! With a science background and lots of customer facing experience Andrea is now able to bring her skill sets together at Van Walt. She will be managing the rental department and providing field services. Working with customers to preserve the country’s amazing natural resources and enjoying the wonderful array of outdoor sports on offer, Andrea has ticked off lots from her ‘wish list’ – the only thing missing is easy access to Swiss chocolate!
Technical Specialist Environmental & Soil Moisture
It comes with the territory: you live in New Zealand – you have a passion for the great outdoors! Combine that with a science degree and experience in an environmental chemistry laboratory and what you have is the ideal background to work for Van Walt. Casey is customer-facing and provides technical advice on equipment options and quotes. With an eye for detail and experience of what our customers need, she works behind the scenes to promote Van Walt equipment, solutions and field services, as well as being the go-to-person for all things health, safety and well-being for the New Zealand team. Based in Oakura, Taranaki, Casey enjoys working from home so she can still indulge in surfing, yoga and chasing her toddler around the beach!
It's no surprise that Mandy, from our New Zealand office, is a sports enthusiast – just like her colleagues! As a keen walker she can enjoy the beautiful Central Otago landscape and keep fit! And she needs all her energy because most of her spare time is taken up with her four grandchildren - this means a lot of travelling at the weekends to see them all! Mandy, with a lot of administrative experience under her belt, has honed her skills of time management; persuasion; perseverance; team work; flexibility and adaptability to keep the New Zealand office running efficiently and smoothly while still finding the drive for her other passions - reading and being with her friends!
New Zealand Branch Manager
Ever since he was old enough to sit up Dirk has been obsessed (much to the frustration of his father) with taking things apart and finding out how they work (Vincent's favourite camera has never quite been the same since). These days are no exception other than that Dirk is able to put them back together in working order again! Dirks formal training in wooden boat building and engineering serves him well in his position at Van Walt. When he is not at work you will find him in the garage getting creative with timber or tinkering on his car. Having laid down his chisels and power tools as a form of income Dirk's new obsession is building the Van Walt name in New Zealand and getting to know your needs.
Director & Technical Sales
Andrew worked in hydrometrics for the National Rivers Authority before moving into environmental consulting where he ultimately established and managed a regional consulting business across Ireland. He was among the first consultants in the 90’s to use bladder pumps and multi-parameter probes to revolutionise sampling by using micro purging techniques. His passion for field work and the outdoors defines both his work and play and he is happiest drilling boreholes, installing loggers and pumps and being outdoors. His long career in the application of monitoring equipment means Andrew has a deep understanding of what our customers need and how to achieve it reliably. When he isn’t working he spends time travelling with his wife and family, making fine wooden boxes and looking after a kennel full of working cocker spaniels.
Conor has a deep interest in all things engineering. He has studied it in theory to masters level, but equally he enjoys making, welding and fabricating to create solutions to design problems. His commitment to see a design through from concept to completion and application makes him a strong finisher, which is a core value we have at Van Walt Ireland. Conor thinks out of the box and makes things happen. After work Conor likes to play hockey; climb up a hill or ski down it; free dive to depths that make your ears pop or explore the edges of the planet. Always keen to do something new he will enjoy solving your environmental monitoring problems.
Technical Support, Sales & Installation
John is a dyed in the wool environmental engineer who brings tremendous engineering skill to solve environmental problems. Everything he does is focused on getting the client what they need and delivering that. His logical approach to project management makes sure it happens on time every time. In his consulting company he has developed a long term monitoring business; collecting and reporting data for clients across Ireland. John is not daunted by tackling something never done before, if it doesn’t exist he will make it and find a way to do it. After work you will find him rebuilding classic volkswagens or modifying his beloved Land Rover. If he isn’t there then you may find him floating at sea or at the end of a pier in search of fish. His cocker spaniel Hugo is never far away.
With a passion for science and the environment, and educated in Earth Sciences, Jani is well placed to take on the challenge of managing Van Walt South Africa. She has the drive and ambition to develop the business, taking our data collection telemetry to new customers, in new sectors, providing solutions to their water, groundwater and soil science monitoring needs. A love of the outdoors makes her well placed for time onsite providing advice or installing equipment, good news she’s not afraid to get her hands dirty! As Jani says herself: “I’ll do whatever it takes to make a success of Van Walt South Africa.” The rest of the team at Van Walt will be supporting her all the way with this exciting new venture.
Technical Sales Manager
With an Honours degree in Applied Geology and a Masters in Geotechnical Engineering we should not be surprised Charl has a love of nature and being outdoors. His qualifications and experience as a consulting Hydrogeologist, and work on geotechnical engineering projects, has fueled this passion and given him the experience we were looking for to develop our South Africa operation. Playing to his technical strengths and desire to help others, Charl works with customers to find the right equipment solutions to meet their environmental monitoring and research needs. When not at work, this ‘people-person’ enjoys a round of golf or socializing with family and friends over a glass (or two) of South African red wine!