Foreman Focus Friday: Curtiss Corkum

Feb 26, 2021 | Source: Hermanson Marketing | Foreman Focus Friday

After 44 years working as a pipefitter, Curtiss Corkum is retiring next month.  

“It is time to pass the torch to the next generation of craftworkers” says Curtiss. “I have enjoyed mentoring upcoming apprentices and preparing them for the continuing shift from pneumatic to electronic controlled mechanical systems.” 


Coming from a family of union pipefitters including his father and three brothers, Curtiss will be passing the torch on to his own son who also works for Hermanson at the Main Pipe Shop. Curtiss’ own journey began in 1977, at Todd Shipyard as a Marine Pipe Fitter Helper on frigates after signing up at the Local 32 union hall.


Curtiss joined Hermanson (the first time) just as the company was branching out to wet side operations. He was one of a handful of plumber/pipefitters to develop Hermanson’s full mechanical contracting expertise. He left and made the rounds at several other area shops before returning to Hermanson in 2015 to finish out his career.

Having worked on projects ranging from downtown Seattle Google, the Davis Wright Tremaine office, Point Defiance Zoo Aquarium, the Federal Reserve Bank in Tukwila, and most recently Sound Transit’s OMFE in Bellevue, Curtiss has been involved in both major projects and tenant improvement work.


At OMFE, Curtiss had the pleasure of taking a first year Apprentice under his wing while working to install over five miles of radiant floor heat piping, making sure the Apprentice’s instruction included the whole picture – from laying pipe to boiler tie-in.


The pandemic impacted Curtiss’ retirement plans. Since he and his girlfriend/long-time partner planned on traveling, he decided to continue working another year, pay off the last bit of debt, and wait out travel restrictions. Their plans are to head back to Key West (by way of Orlando and Miami) then do some international travel to Scotland, Ireland, and London with a second possible European adventure in Italy.


Until then, Curtiss will be enjoying time spent with his three grown children and three grandchildren, soaking in the view of his backyard koi pond, while lounging on his newly constructed deck and dreaming of life on the road. 

Hermanson - as well as the next generation of pipefitters - have benefited from Curtiss’ years of devoted work and shared expertise.

Curtiss' Hermanson family wishes him a retirement full of adventure, rest, and relaxation!

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