Hi-Tech 30 Year Anniversary – Reflections From Our President

It’s hard to believe that Hi-Tech Artificial Limbs opened its doors for the first time 30 years ago.  What began as an ambitious conversation between two men, a dream of creating a clinic where everyone would feel welcome and loved, had finally come to fruition. My father, Maurice Adkins, and Jim McClanahan began this business with trust, faith and an incredible amount of hard work. One was a trustworthy and honest business man, the other a remarkably skilled clinician. Both were amputees who understood  the challenges as well as the personal victories associated with a life dependent on prosthetic care. They instilled a sense of hard work and pride in any and all employees who joined in along the way. Personally, I took a great amount of joy being able to work with my own father while being mentored by the finest clinician I’ve ever known. I’m now in my 25th year at Hi-Tech and I appreciate the hard work and relationships that were built well before I arrived to begin learning about prosthetics.

I vividly remember something Jim told me within the first month of my internship under him. He said, “If you are interested in getting rich, you’d better go somewhere else. If you want to learn how to care for people the right way, stay and follow me.” I am so glad I stayed. I can’t begin to tell you how much I learned from Jim McClanahan. He not only taught me how to be a good prosthetic clinician, but also how to be a servant leader. If you knew my father, I won’t have to tell you the incredible life lessons he taught all of us on a daily basis. I was fortunate to have two incredible men and mentors in my life.

Over the past 30 years, as with any business, there have been constants and there have been changes. For all of us, the most difficult change has been life without our founders. Both my father and Jim have now passed on and there is really nothing that can replace what they meant to Hi-Tech, to its family of employees and patients. However, the principles they founded and the high level of genuine, quality patient care they established has remained a constant. I feel that my greatest possible achievement would be to know that they are both proud of how we’ve continued to conduct business with integrity and treat people with compassion. Technology has continued to evolve, improve and advance with great success. This has led to positive change and advancement in the way we practice and create custom prosthetics over the past many years. What has not changed is the human body and spirit. Sure, we will continue to utilize all available technology and that remains very exciting…but there’s so much more to it. The simple things like smiling, listening, caring, empathy will never be replaced by “technology”.

Many people can joke that their workplace is their “second home”. For me, it truly is. Mainly because the people I work with are my “family”. I have known both of my assistants (and lab director) for 25 years and we’ve worked, laughed, cried, gone through so many great moments together. Our administrative staff keeps us all straight and we probably serve as their bothersome “brothers” at times. In the end, it’s still family. I love that my wife, Melissa, works here and is able to still tolerate me! I started this adventure, all those years ago, by scraping plaster off the floors and staining the outdoor buildings where we stored plaster casts. I am now the President of Hi-Tech Artificial Limbs but have never considered myself anyone’s “boss”. I am simply the lead servant. Along with my partner, Tori, we will continue to press forward for the next many years and enjoy the process. I truly hope that we will have made my father and her husband (Jim) proud of what we’re doing. 30 years for any business is an amazing accomplishment and our entire staff looks forward to continuing with the same level of integrity and care, all while standing on the shoulders of those two men with a big dream.

Shayne Adkins, President

 

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