Steve Baker to retire as Vice President from Minnesota Chemical
(April, 2018) Steve Baker, Vice President of Minnesota Chemical and former TCATA Board Member is set to retire. Steve’s employment with Minnesota Chemical began in 1975, after he graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. His storied career with the company began even earlier than that, doing odd jobs at the Milwaukee office, like cutting the lawn, cleaning the office, and working the warehouse during the summer months. Joining a family business can prove challenging for some people, but Steve wasn’t worried about working for his father and uncles. “I never really had concerns about working for my dad, Robert Baker. I think being in and running a family business is all mostly positive.”
After working more than 42 years in the laundry and dry-cleaning industry, Steve has handled a variety of challenges. “Our current main challenge is the consolidation of our customers. There are fewer accounts to sell to and the wholesale distribution business model is not as integral to customers’ needs as in the past.” That said, MCC continues to bring expertise to customers who have very busy operations and need local supply, equipment and service vendors. Retirement from MCC will be bittersweet for Steve. When asked what he’ll miss most about his job, he says, “Believe it or not, I think I will miss the routine and watching all areas of our business function together. I will also miss all of the relationships that I have developed over many years with employees, customers and vendors.”
When Steve retires on April 1, he hopes to do more volunteer work. He is currently a reading tutor with Reading Partners and a 32-year charter member of the St. Paul Sunrise Rotary Club. He’s looking forward to spending more time with family. Steve and his wife of 33 years, Lisa, hope to spend some time traveling around the USA and have planned an expedition cruise around southern Japan and Korea in 2019.