AIS Celebrates 30 Years in the Industry!
April 1, 2020 will mark a very special occasion, and it’s not April Fools’ Day. Associated Imaging Services (AIS) will celebrate its 30th birthday! Since its founding by Mark Spangler, AIS president, in 1990, AIS has offered nuclear medicine and ultrasound solutions to customers. They specialize in the sales and service of new and refurbished nuclear medicine cameras and ultrasound systems throughout Kansas, Oklahoma Texas, Missouri, Nebraska, Iowa, and the surrounding area.
“I wasn’t around for the start-up process back in 1990,” said Vice President of Sales and Marketing Grant Norris. “He [Mark] started up out of his garage. He simply wanted to earn a living and be his own boss.”
“The company started with two employees, Mark and his wife, LouAnn, in their garage,” said April Starr, marketing and applications specialist.
“My start-up process was very simple,” said AIS President Mark Spangler. “I had 15 years of experience serving nuclear cameras and diagnostic ultrasound equipment, mainly in Kansas and Oklahoma. I installed or serviced most of that equipment when I started AIS in April of 1990. I simply announced to my regular customers my new phone number and company name.”
In an interview, Spangler, Norris and Starr reflected on their experiences with AIS and what makes AIS stand out in the medical equipment and service industry.
“Value and solutions, such as response time, communication, availability and personable service are some things that come to mind,” stated Norris. “We stand behind our work and will do whatever it takes to make sure our customers are happy and ensure that they will want to continue doing business with us over and over again.”
Starr agreed with Norris.
“We do not sell anything that we don’t fully believe in. I think our service after the sale is what makes us such a great company,” she said. “We treat our customers the way we would want to be treated and tend to go above and beyond when we provide applications and service.”
“We are small in size, compared to most of our competitors, but mighty in integrity, capability and determination,” stated Spangler. “Our overhead is less, which gives us more flexibility and allows us to keep prices lower.”
Vice President of Sales & Marketing
Marketing & Applications Specialist
AIS’s services don’t just stop at selling and servicing.
“When it is time for our customers to add or upgrade equipment, we can provide a variety of options, both refurbished and new,” Norris said. “We also provide equipment relocations, applications training, phone support, archiving solutions and pretty much anything our customers need for ultrasound and/or nuclear medicine.”
When asked about her favorite part of working at AIS, Starr responded, “AIS is very family-oriented and invested in each of its employees to be the best they can be. I love getting to travel, meet new people and teach them about ultrasound.”
Norris said, “The people, my co-workers and customers, are my favorite part. All of the AIS employees are truly committed to customer care. We have some of the best customers! There are several people who I love interacting with whom we have had relationships with for years.”
Spangler also gave his thoughts, mentioning that his favorite part is the satisfaction and joy of repairing a customer’s nuclear camera or ultrasound machine and then seeing that equipment being used to diagnose a patient’s health issue.
Throughout its 30 years, AIS has seen many accomplishments. Spangler, Norris and Star each shared what they believe are some of AIS’s biggest achievements.
Spangler noted, “I would probably have to say, somewhat jokingly, the fact that we are still in business after 30 years! I made a comment to my wife when we decided to try and start our own company that I don’t want any employees or a large company. I just wanted to work and make a good living. The fact that we now have 13 employees with two in Texas and one in Oklahoma is pretty amazing to me.”
“There have been a lot of accomplishments, such as having an OEM (SMV) sign a deal with us to service all of their cameras in our area, moving into a brand-new building that includes warehouse space and expanding into South Texas with both service and sales,” Norris said. “Simply being successful and staying open for 30 years is an accomplishment.”
Starr added, “Expanding into Texas with a full-time sales person and service engineer has been a huge accomplishment in my opinion.”
As far as future achievements, Norris and Starr said they would like to see AIS expand, so they are able to reach more customers with their services and products. Spangler added that he wants to start the ISO 13485 certification process.
“Over the 30 years of being in business, we have had a lot of customers,” Norris said. “We want to show as many people as possible the AIS difference with better prices, faster response times and personable service. I reflect on how lucky I am to be part of an organization with great leadership and great people and an organization that truly cares about their customers. I love my job and enjoy working for AIS.”
Spangler concluded the interview with some encouraging words.
“God has been very good, gracious and protective of AIS,” said Spangler. “I attribute all of our success to the God of the Bible and His son Jesus Christ.”
For 30 years, Associated Imaging Services (AIS) has been committed to customer care and service. Commitment, experience, assurance and value are all reasons to choose AIS to take care of your nuclear medicine and ultrasound needs. Happy 30th Birthday, AIS!
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