When Craig Reece started working for Seaview Crab Company more than four years ago, he never expected the job to turn into a career.
“I was attending BLET (Basic Law-Enforcement Training) class,” Reece said. “Seaview was supposed to be a job that I was working until I finished my certification.”
Raised near the shores of Carolina Beach, Craig said he grew up fishing and being on the water. His knowledge of fish helped him land a job at Seaview, where he initially helped build oyster cages and crab pots.
“When I started I was the maintenance guy,” he said. “I’d build or paint what they needed.”
Craig completed his BLET course, but remained at Seaview. The initial job gave way to a position as fishmonger and later to management.
He’s now the lead buyer for the company.
And though today is technically his day off, he’s moving quickly through the building checking orders and inventory, talking on the phone, before stopping to answer questions from employees and customers.
He rarely stops moving, and he acknowledges that his work day extends into the night. “We have regular restaurant accounts and I’m speaking with chefs all morning and all night,” he says. “We’ve got some restaurants that want only specific products like clams or oysters, while others are strictly boat to table.”
Logistics is a major part of the job and Craig says that every day brings its own challenges.
“Sometimes trucks break down, or other things happen and the orders don’t make it in when they should,” he said. When that happens, he immediately calls his customers and together they figure out a plan because, as he says, he’s not just selling seafood but also building relationships.
“I tell them why they aren’t going to get the product and offer them some other options,” he said. “The main thing is to try and get them through the day so that they have everything they need.”
Working for a growing company is exciting because things are constantly evolving and he has the opportunity to build a wholesale team.
And the career in law enforcement?
“I realized that what was driving me to pursue a career in law enforcement was that I wanted to make a difference in my community,” he explained. “And I believe I am doing that through the seafood industry.”