by Terri Earley Terri Earley

Although Lothar’s days as the patriarchal leader of Bachmann Industries came to an end in 2003, where he was destined to spend the final 4 years of his life fighting MDS and Leukemia until his eventual death in 2007, his tenacious and dedicated spirit and the fervent cultural legacy he created continues to emanate the same halls some 15 years later.

Lothar was born, raised, and schooled in Germany before immigrating to Canada in 1960.  He worked as a mechanical engineer where he proved his technical expertise early on with his work on a custom designed & engineered manned diving bell, which demonstrated true innovation in the field at the time.  This lead to advances in his career which ultimately took him to Maine in the early 1970s where he started Bachmann Industries, and over the next three decades, he created a distinguished and worldwide presence in high performance flow control equipment.

In addition to being named to the ‘Who’s Who of American Inventors’ in 1991, Lothar also received the SBA’s Maine Businessman of the Year Award in 1996.  Throughout his entrepreneurial and ingenious life, Lothar was granted 22 patents, with most of them directly related to his 30 years at Bachmann.  Some of these patents include: “Double louver damper,” “Fabric expansion joints for exhaust systems of gas turbines,” “Expansion joint with thermal transition connector,” “Guillotine dampers with blade sealing means accommodative of thermal expansion forces,” and “Composite blade for dampers for ducts of large cross sectional areas.”  But arguably the most financially successful of Lothar’s patents was the “Dual damper diverter,” which was the result of a novel 4-port diverter system for use on SCR systems (Selective catalytic reduction) during the EPA mandated DeNOX Clean Air program of the late 1990s and early 2000s.  Lothar had the vision to realize the market potential for a truly differentiated approach and through his tenacity and relentlessness, he launched Bachmann Industries to the front and center during that critical time period in the Utility market.

Barely a day passes where Lothar’s name is not mentioned during the course of the work day.  He set high standards for the company and the people who represent the Bachmann name.   He certainly built a legacy to be proud of.  As Mike Sellinger, the current President / CEO of Bachmann and former Lothar disciple, shared while speaking at his funeral: Lothar made his business more than a place to work.  He made it a way of life.  He claimed it was about enjoying what you do, being confident in what you do, and believing that success is the only possibility.  Lothar frequently expressed gratification and pride with his company.  While out on the road, he would often say:  “From out here, we do have quite the impressive company.”

As Lothar’s spirit lives on, his core values of ‘Can Do’ attitude, Openness & Honesty, Pride, Passion for our business, and Family remain essential for the Company’s every day mission and focus.