As the president of START PAC, a manufacturer of battery start packs and ground power units for aircraft, Eve Storm is proud to carry on the legacy that her parents began 25 years ago. On the (high) heels of announcing a new international and domestic scholarship program, the multi-talented industry leader sheds light on her impressive background and her commitment to being the best.
HOW DID YOU GET STARTED IN THE AVIATION AND AEROSPACE INDUSTRY?
My mother, Judith Wurth, and stepfather, James Wurth, created the company 25 years ago when he got stranded in the Arizona desert in his helicopter with a dead battery. I was in graduate school working on my doctorate in clinical psychology when I was diagnosed with cancer and started helping with the accounting during recovery. It was then that I realized I wanted to finish my master’s degree but really wanted to work full time for the family business. I did not envision this decision would be one of the best I would ever make.
DESCRIBE A TYPICAL WORKDAY.
Every day is fascinatingly different with new challenges and opportunities. However, customer care and taking care of my extraordinary team combined with the continued propulsion of the company forward are among the most important duties that I wholeheartedly embrace. Having sold to more than 100 countries offers such a spectacular chance to not only offer our superior technology but to be a goodwill ambassador for Las Vegas and America.
WHAT DID YOU WANT TO DO PROFESSIONALLY IN YOUR EARLIER YEARS?
As a child, I wanted to be a mermaid, but that proved impossible. At age 18, I moved to London to study opera at Trinity College of Music. Then I was pre-med, but I graduated with a double major and triple minor. I was a professional singer and songwriter for half my life, and while I was in college, I was the first runner up to Miss Texas in the Miss America Pageant. I went to graduate school twice, and the first time was for clinical psychology. Once I started working for the family business, I went back and completed my MBA in aerospace and defense.
WHAT ARE YOU LEARNING RIGHT NOW?
Well, there is literally everything to learn so I am always reading something. I am currently reading the biographies of Catherine De Medici, Queen Elizabeth I and Mary Queen of Scots. I find it invigorating and empowering to read about women who struggled against so many things and yet not only survived but thrived despite the odds stacked against them.
HOW DID YOU REACH YOUR LEVEL OF SUCCESS, GIVEN THE SECTOR’S GENDER GAP, ESPECIALLY AMONG LEADERSHIP?
Perseverance, hard work and integrity. I have been blessed, but there have been challenges that no one will ever know or understand, and that is ok, because they gave me the opportunity to grow and be better. I choose to be better, not bitter. What is one decision you wish you didn’t make? I don’t believe in regretting decisions. Sometimes you do your best and it doesn’t work out the way you hoped but it is just another chance to grow and learn.
WHO IS YOUR ROLE MODEL?
That’s an easy one, my mother. She is the most extraordinary woman I have ever known. She has worked and sacrificed for me to ensure I can not just succeed but also fail. Failure is one of life’s best teachers, so never allow unhealthy fear to guide your decisions. Why limit yourself before you know what might be possible?
WHAT IS YOUR “WHY”?
In my mind, everything matters. I give everything I can to my work, customers, and team because that is what I love to do. I am so proud of the legacy that my parents created and honored to be carrying the baton. If I am giving the best of myself every minute, then I can live a life without regret knowing I did as much as I could in that moment.
WHAT ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT ATTRIBUTES OF SUCCESSFUL LEADERS TODAY?
Emotional intelligence, a hunger to be better, integrity, kindness, healthy boundaries, self-awareness, and a strong work ethic. I always believe it is better to lead by example through action not words.
WHAT IS ONE ASSUMPTION PEOPLE MAKE ABOUT YOU THAT IS DEAD WRONG?
Most people think I’m a booth hostess at trade shows, not the president and CEO with an IQ of 147.
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