Crane and Access industry veteran Mark Thurston is retiring after 38 years in the business.
Thurston began his career in 1984 as a sales trainee at Grove Manufacturing in Shady Grove and spent his entire career working in field sales roles with Grove, Manitowoc, Snorkel and Sany.
In 1985 after 18 months in Grove’s sales training programme spending time in departments from fabrication and production lines, parts and service, the test track and customer services, he was promoted to district sales manager from Grove Manlift on the west coast. In 1986 he moved to Florida where he took over the South Eastern territory. Four years later he was promoted to western regional manager responsible for all field sales, supervising district manager west of the Mississippi.
(Mark Thurston in 2004]
In 2004 Thurston left Grove after the Manlift division was sold to JLG, and he was recruited by former Grove colleague Frank Scarborough who had been appointed chief operating officer at Snorkel, shortly after it had been acquired by a group of investors led by Al Havlin. Thurston led the western sales efforts for the company. In 2012 the Snorkel business - now owned by Tanfield - ran into funding difficulties and almost closed its doors, was acquired by Don Ahern the following year. In 2013 he joined crane and construction equipment manufacturer Sany America as the western regional business manager for the Lifting Group, with responsibility for sales of lattice and telescopic boomed crawler cranes and Rough Terrains.
After a brief time away from Sany, after the manufacturer withdrew from actively marketing its cranes in the US market, he returned in a territory management role with Sany’s Earthmoving group, with responsibility for distribution development and west coast sales.
By late 2018 Sany was ready to re-enter the North American crane market with a new product range and Thurston played a pivotal role on the team tasked with introducingthe latest generation of Sany cranes to the North American market, kicking off with a formal launch at ConExpo 2020. Later that year Thurston was promoted to director of crane sales - North America. His retirement takes effect from the start of the year.