Kelly Enloe, Welding Shop Supervisor

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SPRINGFIELD MO—With 35 years at Central States Industrial (CSI), Kelly Enloe is CSI’s most tenured employee and has played an integral part in the history of the company. His colleagues know him as a fair boss, a kind mentor, and a wise leader. Kelly looks out for his people, and when asked about his passions, cites his job as one of them. Every employee at CSI is a stitch in the greater fabric of the company. Kelly is an exception; he’s part of the very fabric itself.

However, Kelly didn’t always imagine himself accomplishing greatness. Diagnosed with dyslexia at a young age, he was reading at a 7th and 8th grade level in his final years of high school. “You say to yourself, you’re never going to be anything. You’re never going to amount to anything,” Kelly said. “God opened the doors for me and showed me, there’s more to it than that. I’ve been able to accomplish a lot of things, but it all boils down to work ethic. I’m thankful that God gave me the ability to know how to work hard,” he said.

Kelly began working at CSI in 1982, shortly after graduating with a welding degree from Ozarks Technical College. “I had the opportunity to work for Jim. I was able to utilize my trade and continue to become better at what I did.” Kelly started out welding clean-in-place lines. When Kelly joined CSI, the company was in its infancy. “When there’s only three or four of you, everyone steps up to the plate and you get it done,” he said.

Kelly worked on everything from welding, to polishing, to field and shop work. “Being able to see the big picture, as Central States grew, we knew we needed somebody full time, so I was able to move into a supervisor role,” he said. Kelly has been the welding shop supervisor since 1999. In this position, he manages all aspects of the shop and spends much of his time leading and training the welding craftspeople.

“One of my greatest accomplishments is being able to move into a role where I can help others learn and teach them what Jim taught me. Strive to be a leader. Respect. Determination. Finish what you start. Respect your job and the people you work with and for,” he said, referring to founder, Jim Cook.

Kelly also works closely with project managers and is an integral part of creating a project from start to finish. “I like being able to take components and turn them into a finished good. Seeing what somebody has on paper, or in their mind, and then turning it into a finished product for the customer is awesome,” Kelly said. “I like working with people who care about each other, about their job, and about serving the customer,” he said.

Kelly enjoys hunting quail, pheasant, turkey, and rabbit. He appreciates the marksmanship of close-range hunting. A true outdoorsman, Kelly also spends time grilling and smoking food. Horseback riding is another hobby Kelly enjoys with his family. Riding even led him to meet his wife, Annette, whom Kelly has been married to for 30 years. Together, they have two sons, Cole, 21 and Chad, 26. Kelly also has a daughter-in-law, Kayla Enloe, whom Chad married in July 2016. Kelly's goals are to help CSl continue to grow, to never stop learning, and to be open to changes and improvements. He also wishes to retire while he's still in good health, so he can pursue his favorite hobby full-time, spending time with his family.

Kelly said, “My church is my passion; my family is my passion. As a father, I’ve been told that both my sons have the attribute of a great work ethic. That’s a real proud moment for me. I truly do have a passion for my job, for this company. After 35 years, it’s a part of me.”

"The Original Three"— Jim Cook, Kelly Enloe, and Steve Bates in 1983

To learn more about the work Kelly and his crew accomplish, head over to CSI's welding capabilities page.