PowerSpot: Atif Qamar
This is PowerSpot, Plug Power’s blog series where we highlight the Plug Power employees who inspire us and, we hope, will inspire you, too. Today, we’re hearing from Atif Qamar, Plug Power’s Director of Manufacturing Operations for our Electrolyzer business unit.
Atif, could you please explain what you do for a living in 20 words or fewer.
My team produces the electrolyzer stacks at our Concord, Massachusetts site.
What inspires you about hydrogen and electrolyzers?
Green hydrogen revolutionizes the energy sector and will help us achieve the sustainability goals to leave this planet in a better shape for our kids.
What was one of the most extraordinary/unusual experiences you’ve had in your career.
At a previous company, one of our products was targeting the deep-sea oil pipeline market. We knew that our product could serve the customer’s needs by providing high performing insulation, but our product did not meet their infrared radiation absorption specs. I modified our product to add carbon black for IR absorption, allowing us to meet the customer specs. We won the contract with one of the major oil companies and I remember the moment when we sat in a room saying, “Now we have to build a plant, recruit the manufacturing team and execute.” It was one of the most exciting moments of my career to lead this initiative. Watching our first insulation panel coming off the assembly line was the culmination of R&D, sales, process engineering and manufacturing team working together to develop, sell and make a product that was safer, more sustainable and minimized steel consumption.
What was the first job you were paid to do? What made it interesting?
I worked at the service desk at Caldor. Servicing the customer and improving their experience at the store was very rewarding.
If you could share a meal with any 4 individuals, living or dead, who would they be?
- My grandfather, who passed away when I was very young. Everything I have read and heard from my family, makes me so proud of all he achieved in the field of metallurgical science.
- Steve Jobs, for being an exceptional innovator. He took a chance on his idea and his team and turned Apple into the best tech company in the world.
- David Ortiz, closely followed by Tom Brady. I am a huge Red Sox fan and Ortiz was an unbelievable teammate, down to earth and New England will never forget his heroics in 2004.
- Martin Luther King Jr., for his leadership for dignity, equality and respect for everyone.
What is your proudest accomplishment?
The teams I have developed and both the professional and personal success members of those teams have achieved.
Plug is proud to have Atif on our team!