People &
Deborah Ragsdale
Stephen Frantz
Bryan Olin
Polymer Industries announced three recent promotions.
Deborah Ragsdale headshot
Deborah Ragsdale has been promoted to director of relations. She is well known throughout the performance plastics industry and is currently serving as president of the International Association of Plastics Distribution for the 2021-22 year. “Deborah has been with Polymer Industries for 32 years and has held many positions within our company. This latest position will give her an opportunity to do what she does best — build relationships. She will maintain communications with our employees, vendors and customers to further strengthen our position in the industry,” said Polymer Industries Vice President of Sales and Marketing Rohit Saigal.
Stephen Frantz headshot
Stephen Frantz has been promoted to national sales manager. He will continue to cover the Southern and Eastern territories, including eastern Canada, as he has for the past nine years. A successor for the Southern region will be named soon. Frantz has extensive knowledge of the performance plastics industry and one of his primary goals will be providing support and enhancing relationships with the company’s current distributor network. “We are confident that Stephen will continue to make significant contributions to the success of our company. He has natural leadership qualities and is known for possessing an incredible sense of humor. He has a tremendous amount of insight and extreme support from his team,” Saigal said.
Bryan Olin headshot
Bryan Olin has been named technical sales specialist. He previously headed business development and has 33 years of experience in the industry. He is involved in performance plastics projects with municipalities and special projects for Polymer Industries worldwide. He will focus on technical project development and management of these projects. Olin also serves on the IAPD Editorial Committee. Saigal said, “Bryan’s new role will allow him to provide technical expertise to organizations to better understand customer and application requirements and develop appropriate solutions.”
John D’Arcy headshot
A&C Plastics, Inc. celebrated the 15th anniversary of their vice president of inside sales John D’Arcy. Since starting in sales in 2006, D’Arcy has climbed the ranks within the company. He is an invaluable member of the A&C family, bringing his positive attitude to work all day, every day. In addition, he was instrumental in helping the development and maintenance of A&C’s new building. D’Arcy is a great mentor to his team and coworkers. A&C Plastics greatly appreciates D’Arcy and his dedication to the company and looks forward to many more years with him.
Eugene Alpin
Robert Lowrie
Arkema Inc. announced the promotions of Eugene Alpin to regional field sales engineer, market manager stock shapes and plenum conduit and Robert Lowrie to regional field sales engineer and market manager polymer process aids.
Eugene Alpin headshot
Alpin will manage developments in the use of Kynar® PVDF in the areas of stock shapes and plenum conduit. He will focus his efforts on original equipment manufacturers and design firms to help provide cost-effective, long-life solutions to the chemical process industry. Additionally, Alpin will target opportunities providing low temperature properties with new grades of Kynar Flex® resin to the wire and cable industry. Based in North Carolina, he will continue to work as a field sales engineer in the Mid-Atlantic and Southern regions of the United States. Alpin joined Arkema Inc. in 2016 and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from Villanova University.
Robert Lowrie headshot
Lowrie will oversee the development and strategy implementation of Kynar PVDF in the North America polymer process aid (PPA) market. Kynar PVDF has been used in the PPA market for many years and Lowrie will be working across the PPA value chain to drive cost-effective, sustainable solutions. Additionally, in this role based in Houston, TX, USA, he will continue to provide sales and engineering support for customers and specifiers in the Southwest and West regions of the United States for all Arkema fluoropolymer products. Lowrie joined Arkema Inc. in 2017 after earning a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from Villanova University.
Avery Mellen headshot
CartierWilson LLC announced that Avery Mellen has completed his fourth year of internship. Since 2018, Avery has joined the CartierWilson team during the summer months. He was tasked with countless jobs: CRM design, social media marketing, website design, engaging with customers through quote follow ups and out calling, gained a deeper understanding of the manufacturing processes and competitive landscapes while assisting territory managers and the leadership team. Mellen participated in CartierWilson’s annual sales meetings, organized charitable donations and consistently brought fresh ideas to the table.

“We’ve been absolutely delighted to have Avery on our team. We certainly hope he chooses a career in performance plastics but wish him the best of luck on whatever path he chooses to pursue,” said Principal Chris Corona.

“I’m so grateful to have been a part of the CartierWilson team these last four summers. The people at this company have been a pleasure to work with and have always made me feel like a valuable member of the team, and I’m excited to take the skills I’ve learned here and apply them in the next chapter of my life,” stated Mellen.

Mellen is in his senior year at The University of Alabama where he is majoring in marketing and has a minor in sales. For five semesters, Mellen has made Dean’s list and is expected to graduate with honors. He is a member of the AKPsi business fraternity serving as a new member liaison and has held leadership and volunteer positions with the LIFT program tutoring veterans, special needs students and the Birmingham city school system.

Kris Fraser headshot
Redwood Plastics and Rubber announced that Kris Fraser has been promoted to the position of COO and will be responsible for managing all aspects of the company. In his 20 years of experience, Fraser developed a wide-ranging background. Starting in steel fabrication at a former sister company, Surround Technologies, Fraser held positions in all aspects of the business: project management, operations management, mechanical design, engineering sales and manufacturing. At Redwood Plastics and Rubber, Fraser has held the positions of vice president of manufacturing and vice president of finance. “Kris has a wealth of knowledge and experience that is unique. I’m proud and excited to see where he will take our company,” said CEO Graeme Fraser.

It’s evident Fraser has a respect for the company’s history but has big plans for its future. “Our company has such a strong foundation with customers that are truly partners and a team that is unmatched,” said Kris Fraser, COO, Redwood Plastics and Rubber. “The future looks bright with many new developments that will bring new career opportunities and sustainable products to our communities.”

Gerald Benbenek Christopher Brown
Courtney Caldwell Alexia Cooper
Jennifer Dockweiler Lisa Donner
Lianne Giglio Jenna Hanna
David Holshevnikoff
Professional Plastics announced several new hires:
Gerald Benbenek headshot
Gerald Benbenek joined Professional Plastics as engineering manager. He will work on high-level projects and systems with a focus on continuous improvement. He will concentrate on the quality of all products and assist in the design of the company’s Buffalo, NY, USA facility to create lean manufacturing cells that improve production. Benbenek began his career in manufacturing after serving six years in the U.S. Army as an engineer and intelligence analyst. He has more than 15 years of experience in manufacturing and engineering roles that position him well for this role.
Christopher Brown headshot
Professional Plastics welcomed Christopher Brown to the sales team as an outside sales representative in Salt Lake City, UT, USA. In his new role, Brown will sell the company’s entire product portfolio to existing and new customers. He will also maintain current accounts, close new business and increase profit margins in the Salt Lake City branch. Brown is a recent Rochester Institute of Technology graduate and believes in the motto “Growth and comfort do not coexist” in his work. He plans on accomplishing his business goals using face-to-face sales efforts to build and maintain relationships.
Courtney Caldwell headshot
New Inside Sales Representative Courtney Caldwell will help maintain and grow existing Professional Plastics accounts in Denver, CO, USA. Her efforts will focus on providing outstanding service, product information and pricing to help increase overall sales and revenue. Caldwell is a Denver native with more than 10 years of experience in the service industry. She has a passion for business management and customer service and believes great customer service is necessary to be successful in sales.
Alexia Cooper headshot
Alexia Cooper joined the Professional Plastics Sales team as an outside sales representative in Dallas, TX, USA, where she will develop relationships and close business with new and existing customers. She will focus on cultivating new opportunities while serving and growing accounts in the territory. In her new role, she will sell the company’s entire product portfolio, something she is familiar with from her previous work experience. Prior to joining Professional Plastics, Cooper assisted in running an e-commerce business, including procuring and maintaining wholesale and retail customers.
Jennifer Dockweiler headshot
National Key Accounts Manager Jennifer Dockweiler will support the management of key national accounts at Professional Plastics and drive growth by selling PTFE resin nationwide. She will also promote growth of products along all business lines. Dockweiler brings a wealth of experience to her new position. She’s worked in various aspects of the polymer industry for 25 years, including quality control, production, purchasing, accounting, logistics, inventory management and customer/vendor relations. She is excited to help Professional Plastics grow key account business in PTFE powders and parts.
Lisa Donner headshot
An exciting addition to the Professional Plastics communications team, Lisa Donner will assist with developing literature and artwork that supports the company’s business goals. This includes establishing creative direction for design projects and creating various materials, collateral and communications internally and externally. Donner has worked as a graphic designer for 23 years, including eight years in the plastics industry. She is eager to grow the company’s brand awareness and looks forward to working with different departments to help support their objectives.
Lianne Giglio headshot
Lianne Giglio joined the Professional Plastics inside sales team as a direct source of product information, pricing and support for customers in Seattle, WA, USA. Giglio will work with customers to maintain relationships and grow business opportunities, while also providing support by calculating quotes, maintaining orders and sourcing materials. She has past sales experience in the medical and dental field and is ready to carry her skills over into the performance plastics industry. She is motivated to succeed and believes “If you are not willing to learn, no one can help you. If you are determined to learn, no one can stop you.”
Jenna Hanna headshot
The Professional Plastics inside sales team in Dallas, TX, USA welcomed new inside sales representative Jenna Hanna. Hanna joined the team supporting sales efforts at the company’s Dallas branch where she is responsible for growing sales revenue by providing product information, pricing and support to the location’s customers and prospects. Hanna is excited to be part of the Professional Plastics team and apply her 10 years of sales experience and contribute to the company’s growth and revenue goals.
David Holshevnikoff headshot
David Holshevnikoff brings seven years of sales experience in the plastics industry to his new inside sales representative position at Professional Plastics, including nationwide and e-commerce accounts. His knowledge of the industry, target markets and customer base are great additions to the team. In his new role, he will help maintain and grow existing accounts in the Sacramento, CA, USA market. One of his goals is to increase sales revenue while maximizing the potential of each account and order. After serving national accounts for several years, Holshevnikoff is looking forward to working with local customers to grow the business.
Patrick Castrechini headshot
Patrick Castrechini joined the Plastics Solutions, Inc. team effective Tuesday, September 7, 2021. Castrechini brings more than 14 years of experience in the plastics industry to this position. He worked at a major plastics distribution company, first as an outside sales representative and then as a successful business manager. He most recently was a sales engineer for a large resin compounder.

Castrechini will be working alongside Mike Delladio (upstate New York and eastern Canada) and Craig Miller (New England). He is familiar with accounts in this geography and will contribute significantly to the company’s knowledge base.

Zak Mayne headshot
Zak Mayne has returned to Cast Nylons Ltd. as a regional sales manager. Mayne brings a wealth of sales experience and industry presence to this role. Throughout his career, he has increased sales for multiple organizations and has expertise in scaling business developments. Mayne will be responsible for managing Cast Nylons Ltd. business activities in the Southeast and Southwest regions. He will focus on business strategies to grow the company’s position in the market by focusing on better support for distribution partners. In addition, Mayne plans to implement new sales processes to support Cast Nylons Ltd. overall sales to facilitate growth in the market.
in memoriam
Donald G. Dunn, founder of Plaskolite, LLC, passed away at his home in Columbus, OH, USA at the age of 98. Dunn founded the company April 21, 1950, initially as a maker of drinking straws. By 1962, thermoplastic sheet manufacturing was the focus, and Dunn built a new headquarters in Columbus. Plaskolite has remained there for the past 59 years. Today the company employs more than 1,300 people in 11 facilities around the world.

“A business is many things,” Donald Dunn said in 2012. “It carries the hopes and dreams of its founder, the sum total of years of effort and exhausting hard work. It is the lifeblood of its employees, whose families’ needs are met by the paychecks they bring home. It must be a partner in the community and a leader in the industry.”

“Donald Dunn was a leader of men, an inspiration to anyone who knew him, a respected businessman, a beloved family man and a friend and mentor to me,” said Mitchell Grindley, Plaskolite’s executive chairman. “His influence is felt in everything we do as a company. The Plaskolite culture of hard work, sacrifice, respect for others and love of family is a direct reflection of Donald. That will never change.”

Dunn earned a Purple Heart and Silver Star for his actions on April 15, 1945, in the northern Apennine Mountains of Italy. As a Staff Sergeant, 10th Mountain Division, Dunn led a U.S. Army platoon against fierce German resistance. While approaching the objective, Dunn was badly wounded by enemy sniper fire, “and though suffering severely, was mindful only of the welfare of his men and the success of the mission by instructing his successor so capably that the assignment was fulfilled.”

“We mourn the loss of Donald, who exemplified the character of the Greatest Generation,” said Ryan Schroeder, Plaskolite’s president and CEO. “He was tremendously proud of the company and the people who work here. The Plaskolite family will honor him by continuing to follow the principles he instilled throughout the company.”

Dunn was an active member of the Columbus community, most notably as board member of Buckeye Boys’ Ranch and was a longtime supporter of St. Stephen’s Community House. Along with supporting numerous other charities, in 2013, the Dunn family founded the Donald G. and Mary A. Dunn Chair of Modern Military History at The Ohio State University.

David Radabaugh
Ruth Orantes
A&C Plastics, Inc. announced the addition of two fantastic members to their team: System Analyst David Radabaugh and E-Commerce Sales Representative Ruth Orantes. Both have only been with the company a short time but have already become part of the close-knit family that makes up A&C Plastics. Orantes is “excited to start her business career in such a fun, hardworking environment” and Radabaugh is happy that he has found an “environment that’s going to provide plenty of opportunities to learn and grow.”
David Radabaugh headshot
Ruth Orantes headshot
Jeff Pack Chelsea Bohnert
Eric Moses Dylan Davis
Marcus Van Overbeek
Interstate Plastics announced several new hires:
Jeff Pack headshot
Jeff Pack is Interstate Plastics Hayward (CA, USA) outside sales team’s newest member. Pack has worked in the plastics industry for many years with a special interest in the mechanical sector of the industry. He loves the challenge and reward that comes with gaining new customers.
Chelsea Bohnert headshot
Chelsea Bohnert is Interstate Plastics Des Moines (IA, USA) inside sales’ newest team member. Bohnert previously worked in sales and is excited to start her journey in the plastics industry. Interstate Plastics looks forward to her joining the team.
Eric Moses headshot
Eric Moses is one of Interstate Plastics’ new plastic machining inside sales team members. Moses previously worked in the fields of wastewater, drilling and plastics. He is excited to continue his journey with the plastics industry and Interstate Plastics looks forward to him joining the team.
Dylan Davis headshot
Dylan Davis is another of Interstate Plastics’ new plastic machining inside sales team members. Davis previously worked in the industrial supply realm and is elated at the opportunity to start his career in the plastics industry. He looks forward to building strong relationships with customers and vendors.
Marcus Van Overbeek headshot
Marcus Van Overbeek is the newest addition to Interstate Plastics’ e-commerce team. He graduated from California State University Chico in 2017 where he studied finance. Van Overbeek is excited to be on board and Interstate Plastics is equally as excited to have him join, as with all the newest additions to the team.
Spartech LLC announced that Michael Reed has joined their executive team as vice president, business management, M&A and sustainability. In his new role, Reed will be responsible for business managers and general managers within Spartech’s new business teams including the Cell Cast Acrylic, Royalite®, Thick Gauge Sheet and Specialty Films product lines; and for plant locations in Salisbury, MD, USA; Manitowoc and Sheboygan Falls, WI, USA; and Muncie, IN, USA.

“Mike will leverage his over 20 years of proven plastics compounding, extrusion and packaging experience to help shape plant and product line growth,” said Spartech CEO John Inks. “He will also be instrumental in cross-functionally developing and overseeing our sustainability strategy and initiatives, will be responsible for the mergers and acquisitions pipeline and will act as integration lead for businesses acquired by Spartech.”

With a 17-year Spartech tenure, Reed has also served as vice president of business development at Graham Packaging where he launched and led a new food packaging business based on ground-breaking polyethylene terephthalate (PET) technology. Most recently, he was with Tekni-Plex as vice president of market development where he built and led strategic initiatives in growth, acquisitions and sustainability.

Reed holds a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from the University of Pittsburgh.

Spartech LLC announced that Jiang Li has been promoted to technology manager for the Spartech Innovation Center. In this role, Li will be responsible for leading a team of engineers and support staff on novel product development, customer sample orders, material evaluation and cost savings projects.

“With Jiang Li heading up the innovation side of Spartech, we can continue to advance our plastic solutions to new levels,” said Spartech CIO and Vice President of Technology John Vandeven. “He will also lead new material platform development that includes unique packaging solutions as well as support our focus on sustainability initiatives.”

Li has been with Spartech for nearly six years. He previously held product development positions at Pactiv in Rochester, NY, USA, and Advanced Composites in Nashville, TN, USA. Li holds a PhD in chemistry from Vanderbilt University and an MBA from the Olin School of Business at Washington University in St. Louis, MO, USA.

Technetics PTFE & Polymer Solutions (aka Technetics Group Houston) was acquired by Edgewater Capital Partners effective September 3, 2021. The company’s new name is Altamira Material Solutions LP. This acquisition includes two PTFE and polymer processing facilities in Houston, TX, USA and one location in Hatfield, PA, USA that provides chemical etching services for the fluoropolymer industry. The changes in organizational structure will allow the company to focus on their core business and improve processes. According to Altamira General Manager Andrew Bastian, “The team Altamira Material Solutions is excited to build on our 50-year history of supplying industry leading PTFE products with our new partner Edgewater. We have a big vision for the future and expect to achieve great things together. This partnership is a win for our employees and customers. We couldn’t be happier with the opportunity to work together toward a bright future.”

A&C Plastics, Inc. was ranked #14 on the Houston Business Journal’s Top 50 Middle Market Firms Award list. This list designates the 50 fastest-growing for-profit public and private companies in the Houston, TX, USA area over the last two years. A&C thanks their customers and employees for helping to make this happen.

Piedmont Plastics
Piedmont Plastics announced that it will open a new branch in Chattanooga, TN, USA this fall. This new location will mark Piedmont’s 51st branch in North America and fourth location in the state of Tennessee. The Chattanooga branch will operate as a full-service distribution facility with a comprehensive inventory, cut-to-size services, routing capabilities and local delivery options.

“We are proud to expand our coverage in the Chattanooga market,” said Randy Blankenship, region manager at Piedmont Plastics. “This new branch location will allow us to better serve our existing customers in the area, as well as provide us with the means to facilitate further growth in this region.”

Arkema acquired Ashland’s Performance Adhesives business, a producer of high-performance adhesives for industrial applications in the United States. This acquisition aligns with the company’s goal of becoming a pure specialty materials player by 2024 and focus its development on sustainable and high-performance solutions.

Ashland Performance Adhesives operates in high-growth applications in decorative, protection and signage films for automotive and buildings. Ashland also holds significant positions in structural adhesives in the United States in segments such as wood bonding for construction, composites and transportation. Finally, Ashland Performance Adhesives offers adhesives for flexible packaging, addressing growing demand for more sustainable products. Ashland’s Performance Adhesives business, which employs approximately 330 people and operates six production plants, mainly in North America, has enjoyed sustained growth in recent years and has significant growth potential in Europe and Asia.

GB PLAS SDN BHD has selected Plastics Solutions, Inc. as their exclusive manufacturer’s representative for North America. GB PLAS is a Malaysian manufacturer of solid (polycarbonate, acrylic, PETG, polystyrene) and multiwall (polycarbonate) sheets as well as a full line of aluminum composite panels (ACP). Depending upon product formulation, GB PLAS produces solid sheet from 0.3 mm to 30.0 mm thickness, with a maximum usable width of 2100 mm. In addition to clear and colored sheet, they have an extensive line of patterns which can be supplied in most solid sheet formulations. Masking options are paper and PE film. In addition to their solid sheet, they produce hollow/multiwall polycarbonate sheet in 4 mm, 5 mm, 6 mm and 8 mm thicknesses, clear and colors. Their ACP sheets are offered in a wide array of colors, in thicknesses of 2 mm, 3 mm and 4 mm.
Deborah Ragsdale and Alabama Governor Kay Ivey
Deborah Ragsdale (left) and Alabama Governor Kay Ivey (right) during a visit to Polymer Industries in September.
Alabama Governor Kay Ivey visited Polymer Industries on Monday, September 27 to tour the high-performance plastics manufacturer located in Henagar, AL, USA. The tour allowed Governor Ivey to see the latest manufacturing technology and how the products manufactured in Alabama are used in numerous markets around the world for infrastructure, municipalities and manufacturing.

Polymer Industries Director of Relations and IAPD President Deborah Ragsdale stressed the importance of high-performance plastics being represented in the infrastructure package and the importance of open competition, “There are less expensive alternatives to concrete and steel such as pipe-grade materials for infrastructure. High-performance plastic products are used worldwide in the top manufacturing, transportation and construction projects across the country.” Ragsdale informed the governor that Polymer Industries has a closed loop recycling commitment to make sure nothing they manufacture ends up in landfills or the ocean.

“It was an honor and privilege to have Governor Ivey visit our plant and learn more about the important role of performance plastics and our commitment to sustainability for the future of our environment,” said Polymer Industries Vice President of Sales and Marketing Rohit Saigal.

Mitsubishi Chemical Advanced Materials AG (MCAM) announced its goal to achieve climate positivity in its operations by 2030. The company has set ambitious targets and actions to reduce its emissions and environmental impact, compensate for unavoidable emissions with high-quality carbon credits and invest in carbon removal projects.

MCAM’s goals build on an in-depth gap analysis of its progress across all existing climate action carried out in 2020, which enabled the company to set the first milestone of becoming climate neutral by 2023. Half of MCAM’s 32 manufacturing and fabrication sites around the world already use 100 percent electricity based on renewable sources; five of these locations compensate for their remaining emissions. MCAM currently measures the greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) resulting from its production and indirect energy procurement-related emissions. Additionally, the company tracks the use of water, virgin raw materials, as well as overall waste generation.

To support its long-term sustainability strategy, MCAM will take the following steps to achieve climate positivity:

  • Establish a baseline of emissions within the supply chain and other non-direct emissions. Based on this inventory, from 2023 onwards, MCAM will set realistic yet ambitious reduction pathways in line with the scientific requirements to reach the goals of the Paris agreement.
  • Continue to reduce emissions by implementing energy efficiency measures, with a realistic goal of reducing the energy used in its operations by 15 percent globally by 2025, compared to a 2015 baseline.
  • Increase renewable energy procurement to reach 100 percent by 2023.
  • Compensate by investing in certified, high quality carbon credits when emissions are unavoidable.
  • Incorporate resource efficiency in production as part of MCAM’s holistic framework.
  • Continue lifecycle assessments and strategic acquisitions in support of MCAM’s move toward a circular economy.
  • Commit to zero plastic waste to landfill, as well as waste and water usage reduction by at least 20 percent each by 2025, compared to a 2015 baseline.

To accelerate its organic effort to implement its circular economy strategy, MCAM has made the following acquisitions:

  • MCAM acquired the recycling activities of Minger Kunststofftechnik AG (now MCAM Symalit AG, Appenzell Branch, Recycling Solutions), a market leader in recycling of engineering plastics and advanced materials.
  • CFK Valley Stade Recycling GmbH and CO KG and carboNXT GmbH. CFK is a leading solution provider for customers in mobility-related industries and offers advanced proprietary technology that breaks down carbon fiber waste and converts this material into various usable forms of carbon fiber. carboNXT closes the loop by offering these products back to the market.
Rob Ferguson headshot
Vycom announced that Rob Ferguson has joined the team as market development manager in charge of the company’s marine and outdoor living products. He will be responsible for business development and new product launches while working with supplier and manufacturing partners to oversee the company’s efforts in these critical growth markets. Ferguson will have oversight for the Vycom product lines that serve these markets including Seaboard®, Designboard®, Playboard® and TimberlineTM sheets.

“We’re extremely pleased that Rob has joined our industry-leading team, bringing with him a strong working knowledge of outdoor application requirements,” said Vycom Vice President, Sales and Marketing Kevin Duffy. “His depth of experience within the polymer industry and technical background brings a fresh perspective to help propel expansion in outdoor living and marine markets that have recently been surging.”

Ferguson joined Vycom from Chroma Color Corporation where he was the market development specialist for the building and construction and pool and spa markets. Before that, he was the director of technical and business development for Plastics Color Corp. He also served as plant technical manager at Teknor Apex Co. Ferguson holds a bachelor’s degree in biology/chemistry from High Point University in North Carolina. He is based in North Carolina.

Zeus Industrial Products, Inc. has finalized an agreement to integrate CathX Medical Inc. into its organization. Based in San Jose, CA, USA, CathX is a medical device contract manufacturer that offers customers a single source for catheter design engineering services, rapid prototyping, manufacturing and full or sub-assemblies. CathX leadership will continue to manage the San Jose facility, services and team members under the global leadership of Zeus President and CEO Steve Peterson.

Zeus’ core business has always been and remains component manufacturing across medical and industrial markets. The integration with CathX extends the company’s capabilities serving medical customers to include contract manufacturing services. As medical device companies and OEMs face increasing pressure to innovate, solve complex problems and bring solutions to market faster than ever before, Zeus is positioning itself to increase its strategic value for customers significantly. Peterson remarked, “As their trusted supply partner, adding contract design and manufacturing capabilities is a natural progression for Zeus and our customer partnerships. We know this capability will help us better serve our customers’ ever-evolving needs.”

The integration also provides advantages for CathX customers: They will benefit from Zeus’ research and development facilities, comprehensive product lines and high-volume manufacturing capabilities across North America and internationally. “With access to greater resources, we can deepen our customer partnerships by offering increased support, stability and opportunities,” remarked Suresh Sainath, co-founder and president of CathX Medical. “We are excited to expedite plans to expand our team and San Jose facility so that we can continue to collaborate closely with customers in delivering outstanding innovation and customer successes well into the future.”

Underpinning the decision for both organizations is their strong cultural alignment. “Like Zeus, CathX is very much a ‘people-first’ company,” said Peterson. “We share the same core values across excellence, people, integrity and creativity, and are delighted to welcome the entire CathX team into our Zeus family.” As a family-run business for 55 years, a major draw for CathX is the family-oriented culture at Zeus and its long-term view. “They look after their people, and I know they’ll do the same for our team and our customers,” remarked Sainath.

Spartech has acquired Crawford Industries, L.L.C., a manufacturer of thin-gauge extruded polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP) sheets which are then converted into unique, environmentally friendly products. This partnership will provide Spartech with new opportunities for growth and strengthen its abilities to develop and deliver standard and custom plastic sheet and packaging products to its valued customers.

“It’s the beginning of a great and mutually beneficial relationship — Spartech has the desire and resources to help Crawford take its business to the next level, and they have high-quality, thin-gauge capabilities that will enhance Spartech’s existing product offerings,” said Spartech CEO John Inks. “Together, we will be able to offer our joint customer base a wider array of products that we can leverage into new, more complete and more customized solutions.”

“Joining an industry leader with 14 manufacturing sites and a unique Innovation Center, a diverse arsenal of technologies, and enduring customer partnerships will accelerate Crawford’s growth initiatives,” said Kendall Faulstich, co-president of Crawford Industries.

Founded in 1959 by Ken Crawford, the company’s ability to not only extrude, but also convert PE and PP products through printing, die cutting and a variety of finishing capabilities, gives it a distinct differential advantage in its markets and provides one-stop shopping for its customers.

Blake Pace
The Sustainable Green Printing Partnership (SGP), the leading authority in sustainability certification for the printing industry, announced Christopher Rose of Shutterfly and Blake Pace of Primex Plastics Corporation as the first Sustainability Champions. The SGP Sustainability Champion program recognizes SGP Com-munity Members for outstanding efforts in making the environment a better place to work and live. An SGP Sustainability Champion is committed to positive change, shows passion through leadership and exemplifies environmental stewardship and activism. Champions look beyond immediate, short-term goals and are committed to making an impact in a larger context.

Blake Pace is the general manager of the Primex Plastics Reedsburg, WI, USA facility. “Blake is a firm believer in responsible manufacturing. Along with renewable energy usage, environmental efforts emphasize energy and efficiency audits, reuse and rework of pallet and packaging materials and proactive freight considerations,” said Teri Benning of Primex Plastics in her nomination submission. “Among many of Blake’s sustainability programs, he assisted in the implementation of smart lighting programs throughout his plant, updating lighting to LED and adding sensors in many locations so that lighting is automatically adjusted based on occupancy. For many years Blake has aided several customers with methods and resources to deal with their plastic waste which has resulted in thousands of pounds of plastic waste staying out of the landfills.

“He has also implemented policies and procedures to divert hundreds of thousands of pounds of internal reclaim annually from the waste stream. Blake’s strong voice relative to sustainability is apparent in the fact that the president of Primex named him as the chairperson of Primex’s Sustainability Committee. In addition, Blake believes in actively participating in community events including sponsoring Reedsburg’s Concerts in the Park, fundraising for the local nursing home and giving back to our local EMS, fire and police departments.”

AAG Tailored Cutting Solutions has launched a new corporate website, It is designed to offer tailored cutting solutions to help customers automate better. The site includes a fresh new look and instant access to the company’s three brands: AXYZ Tailored Router Solutions, WARDJet Tailored Waterjet Solutions and The site features industries served, product recommendations and examples of projects from customers.

IAPD is pleased to welcome Exolon Group S.P.A. as the association’s newest manufacturer member. Exolon Group manufactures solid and multiwall sheets for a wide range of innovative applications. The company has 40 years of accumulated expertise in the extrusion of thermoplastic sheets. Their products can be found in construction, visual communication, industry and LED applications. The material is manufactured in accordance with quality standards at production facilities in Belgium and Italy. Exolon Group is part of the Serafin group of companies based in Munich, Germany and continues Covestro’s former plastic sheet business.