William J. Cutts
Designer of Tanks and Vessels Manager and Dedicated Mentor
Inducted in 2011
William J. Cutts, founder and CEO of American Tank & Vessel Inc., has built a premier company with a reputation for design and product expertise. Under his leadership, AT&V has become a key player in the worldwide market for steel tanks and vessels and has developed a reputation for supporting its industry and the public good by mentoring young engineers.
After receiving his bachelor’s degree in industrial management from Alabama Polytechnic Institute in 1955, Cutts joined Chicago Bridge and Iron Works’ engineering department in Birmingham, Ala. Five years later, he accepted a position with the American Blower division of American Standard and located in Knoxville, Tenn., after extensive sales training.
Cutts has been a pioneer in mechanical design, innovation and production. He participated in the construction of the first LNG tank built in the United States in 1958 in Lake Charles, La. In 1967, he sold his first large-scale-asphalt-storage tank and realized he could bring his expertise to customers worldwide.
By the 1980s, Cutts was building complex and sophisticated tank and storage systems. Since forming his present business, AT&V, in 1982, he has never looked back. He has built AT&V from a regional concern into a national and international leader in design, innovation and manufacture of steel tanks, pressure vessels and specialized structures. A significant endorsement came when the city of Mobile, Ala., worked with Cutts to site his corporate headquarters in that premier seaport. He and his colleagues later developed a fabrication facility in Lucedale, Miss., which has become a major employer in an area where employment opportunities have sometimes been scarce. An additional fabrication and erection facility was later established in Houston, Texas, to serve the petrochemical industry.
AT&V’s patented technology dealing with emission control, non-destructive examination, and construction techniques has been devoted to African, Asian, European, Central and South American, and Caribbean projects. Current overseas activities represent nearly $100 million of U.S. content in engineering, materials and fabrication. AT&V’s wide-ranging design and manufacturing efforts have brought jobs to the U.S. and Alabama for more than 25 years.
Cutts has built AT&V into an operation employing more than 250 people, primarily at the regional office in Lucedale and the headquarters in Mobile, with other personnel deployed in regional offices in Houston; Baton Rouge, La.; Moss Point, Miss.; and Birmingham. Cutts leads an innovative and imaginative company awarded, among other distinctions, the 2008 Chemical Processing’s Reader’s Choice Award for Best Technology Provider of Tanks and Vessels. AT&V has successfully competed for cutting-edge design and construction projects for sophisticated owners, including NASA.
Under the leadership of Cutts, AT&V has sponsored medical and educational missions and engineering teams traveling to Africa, has designed and constructed a school in Ghana as a sister school to Houston’s Christian High School, and is constructing a second Ghanaian school as a sister school to Indian Springs Elementary School in Mobile.
Cutts is a longtime faithful member of Government Street Presbyterian Church, in Mobile, and is personally involved in service to the poor and disadvantaged through his church.