To say Bill Wheatley is a man who wears many hats would be an understatement. It would also constitute dredging up an archaic expression that’s become old hat (another archaic expression), so we just aren’t going to go there. Let’s simply say that Bill is a busy man here at CV Products. As product specialist, his job has grown exponentially over the past 23 years, including a decade as the company’s purchasing director.
Today, Bill coordinates patent applications, performs training for the sales staff on new products and other topics, and is a member of our New Product Introductory committee. In addition, he runs testing for CV customers and experimental testing for Xceldyne on the company’s Spintron. He also orders shelf stock from Xceldyne, schedules production priorities for the Job Shop, and is the contract manager for work done by Xceldyne for customers in the aerospace industry. He’s a self-described 911 guy — the person folks go to when they need something technical completed in a timely manner. Like yesterday.
And with that introduction, here’s a Q&A to which we subjected this busy man before he headed off for some other task:
CV Products: Where did you go to college and what did you study?
Bill Wheatley: My college years were spent at the University of Arizona in Tucson. Three years in engineering, then four years in the Air Force, followed by two more years back at the University of Arizona.
CV: What did you do prior to coming to work for CV Products?
Wheatley: Here in the south I worked for Ram Automotive, then Kenny Bernstein’s NASCAR team and then Jerry Hemmingson, who manufactures the Jerico four-speed transmission. After that, I helped Roy Hill start his drag race school.
CV: What attracted you to CV Products?
Wheatley: It’s a small company and the owner is a good, honest person.
CV: When you’re not working, what do you like to do in your spare time?
Wheatley: Maintain the Wheatley family estate, visit my kids, and maintain our cars.
CV: What reality TV show should you be on and why would you win or lose?
Wheatley: I don’t watch reality shows, I am involved in racing, which has much larger characters than you will find on TV.
CV: What’s your all-time favorite CV Products item and why?
Wheatley: That would be the CV Products building. When Clyde (Clyde Vickers, the founder of CV Products) wanted to expand his business, I suggested he start an industrial park. That way he would never run out of space for his business and could attract new racing-related companies. Look at the place now. It could not have grown to look like it does any other way. Clyde listened to many of my suggestions, some on which were the theater for training, keypads for entry, spiral staircase for the lobby, and an office for visiting manufacturers.
CV: What’s one thing not many people know about you?
Wheatley: That after all these years, I am still the senior inventor here at CV Products. I hold three patents and one assist in the nitrous oxide supercharging field.