By Josh Rees
Bill Coghlan lives by two mottos.
“Circumstances don’t make the man, they reveal him,” he said. “And do your best every day.”
As a single father who raised Irish-twin boys (15 months apart) for nine years, he is no stranger to overcoming challenging circumstances.
“I consider raising my kids by myself to be the most successful thing I’ve done so far,” said Coghlan, who is a technical support engineer at Bell and Howell.
He grew up in New York, where his mother was a registered nurse and his father was a jet mechanic for Eastern Airlines at JFK.
“My father’s legs were hurting him a lot after he was blown up in WWII, and he was afraid that he wasn’t going to be able to be [work in the maintenance hangers],” he said. “So, when I was 13, my father and I took electronics courses through-the-mail.”
Those courses helped Coghlan lay down ground work for his career in avionics in the Air Force, where he served as an instrument technician for six years. After that, he went to work for the Department of Defense for 14 years as an air reserve technician, working primarily on integrated guidance and control, communication and navigation systems. He also taught reservists on the weekends.
Bill Coghlan has been with Bell and Howell for more than 17 years. He serves as a technical support engineer on the PackRobot team.
Having joined Bell and Howell more than 17 years ago, Coghlan started as a lead service engineer, supervising more than 10 technicians and servicing mass mailing machines for Bank of America branches across the entire state of Ohio. Since then, he’s dabbled in project management and was finally brought on to the PackRobot team as a Technical Support Engineer. The PackRobot is an e-commerce parcel delivery system serviced by Bell and Howell.
“I enjoy applying my knowledge of robotics to the PackRobot team,” he said. “It’s by far the most interesting machine I’ve worked on.”
Coghlan is also a lifelong Harley-Davidson guy who values challenging hobbies.
Whether it’s running marathons, teaching kickboxing, or building houses (he’s built two by himself), he continuously looks for new ways to test his focus and technical skills.
“I do my best every day,” he said. “Whatever happens, I just do it. Even raising my kids by myself, I didn’t even think about it. That’s probably why I’m working on the PackRobot.”
Coghlan defines success in life as doing something that one loves and giving back to society.
“I volunteer a lot,” he said. “I took care of my mother with help from hospice care, until she died. That’s why I volunteer with them since they were such a big help.”