The Company

Cascade Engineering Technologies is a high-precision machining and assembly business servicing the aerospace industry since 1988. Cascade has produced some of the most complex, thin-wall monolithic structures for OEM and Tier 1 customers in the industry, using bold innovation and creativity to drive success.

The Need

Founder, Dirk Ellis, and his team have led the industry in metrology and cast datum machining for almost twenty-five years. They experienced incredible momentum in the business, especially after developing dedicated 5-axis machining capabilities specializing in thin wall hard metal castings. But in 2012, the business had reached a point where Dirk needed a thinking partner to grapple with the larger issues the success was creating. “It was getting beyond my ability to manage all of the complexities; to see the forest through the trees,” Ellis said. “That’s a big part of what I was looking for; someone who could help me keep the big picture in sight.”

Cascade Engineering Technology

The Solution

Dirk always knew the company would eventually have the ability to add a trusted outside advisor to the team. And when the time came to make that happen, Rick Thomas was the “only logical choice.”

Over the next nine years, Rick’s role stayed congruent with the reason he was hired: maintaining focus on the strategic initiatives and goals they set for the company as well as leadership. He helped the group prioritize and stay accountable to the bigger picture and overall objectives that are often lost in the shuffle of daily priorities.

The Value

Rick brought to Cascade Engineering Technologies the pivotal role of accountability, helping the team stay committed and focused on the overarching mission at hand. Rick was willing to offer constructive feedback and challenge the process when necessary. His presence, serving more like a member of Cascade than a consultant, “helped in so many different ways.”

“Rick was an integral part of our success as we grew and achieved bigger things and accomplished larger milestones. I wouldn’t have been able to do that solely on my own.”

— Dirk Ellis

The Results

Running a business is hard, and Dirk mentioned how it “has a way of feeling like guerrilla warfare at times -- one drama-filled day to the next.” However, Rick became a part of the team, keeping both Dirk and his team on track. The communication amidst some of the most challenging situations, internally and externally, helped the company problem-solve, learning through it all to grow and thrive.

“It never felt like Rick was a consultant or an advisor, but more of a key part of the team,” Dirk relayed. Working with Rick “just felt natural.”

In 2020, Cascade became part of Goff Capital of Fort Worth, Texas, providing expertise and capital to take Cascade to the next level.

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