Gary Steensgard

Gary Steensgard
Dandridge, TN

Challenging online education enabled HIS professional success

Gary Steensgard's military-to-civilian transition inspired him to finish the education he had started more than 20 years earlier, and earn both a bachelor's in Multidisciplinary Studies and master's in Performance Improvement from Grantham University. Gary's education and determination gave him the edge he needed to land a successful civilian career.

Army veteran Gary Steensgard is enjoying a thriving HR career in manufacturing, most recently leveraging his Grantham University education and work expertise to become Plant Human Resources (HR) Manager in 2019 for Ball Metalpack, the North American leader in metal packaging. The professional experience that contributed to his successful civilian career began in the Army, where Gary served as the Area HR and Recruiting Operations Manager (First Sergeant). As his military retirement approached, Gary began preparing for his transition into the civilian world, by building upon his solid HR experience with college education. After learning about Grantham in 2010 during an Army training function, he was quick to enroll. Amidst family life and Army responsibilities, he determinedly earned two degrees in just five years. And when he retired from the Army in 2015, he was well-prepared for his next exciting chapter.

Gary landed a position as Meritor's HR supervisor and, within a year, was given operational control over environmental, health and safety operations, and leadership of all HR-related issues. Gary was promoted at Meritor to plant HR supervisor, and then to regional HR and safety manager. This experience opened even more doors for Gary, leading to his new role with Ball Metalpack. Among his many accomplishments are the North Carolina Department of Labor Gold Award for Safety, implementation of a highly praised digital training management system, recipient of the corporation's first-ever CEO's Chief Safety Officer Award, and selection to lead Meritor's Veteran's Business Resource Group.

"Knowing my military transition would be challenging, I discovered my many years of Army leadership combined with my Grantham education would land me a great second career."