October 12 – Norman Oberto shared his success story last night at the Science Entrepreneurship Speaker Series at Millikin Univerity.
Oberto, a Millikin alumnus of 1974, is the Chairman and Owner of Imperial Plastics Inc. out of Minnesota. Prior to that Oberto was the Vice President of Sales and Marketing of with Wagner Castings Company.
Oberto shared his story entitled “The Imperial Plastics Story: A Journey in Determination.” He says he hopes he inspired members of the audience with his story.
“I wasn’t bashful about going up to people and asking them how they did things, for me that was a very important element for me to get a mental picture of what it is that I could do and some of that rubbed off on me,” says Oberto. “I hope I said something tonight to spark these young folks into doing whatever it is they desire to do.”
Imperial Plastics Inc. is the largest plastic injection molder in Minnesota and one of the largest in the country.
Oberto says he participated in the series so he could share his entrepreneurial story. At 44 years old, Oberto felt he had enough tools necessary to go off on his own venture. He spoke on what lead to his decision to buy a company [Imperial Plastics Inc.] and what he’s done the last 20 years building the company. Oberto also made sure to give thanks to mentors who helped him over the years including his college professors.
He earned a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering from Millikin University in 1974 and received the Major Thomas G. Storey Citizenship Award for being an Outstanding Engineering Graduate. He was also recognized as Business Person of the Year by the Lakeville, Minnesota Chamber of Commerce in 2011.
Oberto says he hopes that he drove home his message that determination can be extremely beneficial and fulfilling in life.
“Determination has been my mantra,” says Oberto. “Once I figure out what I want to do I’m pretty determined in getting it done. Sometimes you have to make adjustments along the way and back up one step before you can move two steps forward. I think not giving up has been a characteristic that has helped me in many areas over the years.”
Oberto also had advice for young aspiring entrepreneurs.
“If you’re going to go into business I have always told people to do it for a higher purpose, that’s number one,” says Oberto. “Develop a list of core values, stay humble and grateful for the opportunity to do what you’re doing and get out meet people and network.
The next speaker in the Science Entrepreneur Speaker Series is Parry Dixon, Chief Economist of Archer Daniels Midland on Tuesday, November 15th. For more information on the series you can call 217- 424-6392 or click here.