Category Archives: Community Activities of Interest
AB&I partnered with Emiliano Sanchez and the Oakland Unified School District to host several middle school students and approximately 65 students from two Oakland high schools on November 2. The goal is to continue educating students about the career opportunities available in manufacturing and the important role it plays in our lives. Many students think of manufacturing as an old industry with no advanced technology. Advanced Manufacturing and Career Technical Education Day gives us the opportunity to showcase the role technology plays in our foundry today and hopefully inspire the next generation of manufacturers.
AB&I manufacturing ambassadors talked to the students about how they started their careers at AB&I, what they are doing now and why they like manufacturing. Environmental team member Mike Olvera talked about how he found his passion in the environment through an internship in high school. He discussed all the regulations he has to follow and stay up-to-date on and how he has to apply them by working collaboratively with engineering, maintenance, production and other departments to implement changes. Rich Watson, Jose Martinez, Jaime Miramontes, Alfredo Costa, Roberto Ramirez led tours for two groups of students, teachers and chaperones. Prior to the tours, Jennifer Grundell coordinated the necessary personal protective equipment (PPE), including head phones. AB&I also presented each student with a t-shirt that Jenny designed and a 4” cast iron skillet.
At the conclusion of the tour, the students went to Laney College for lunch and an introduction to the various manufacturing programs available at the college.
“I appreciate the partnership with AB&I and the willingness of the manufacturing Ambassadors and the team to share their experience and knowledge with the students,” said Emiliano Sanchez.
Allowing manufacturers an opportunity to open their doors and show, in a coordinated effort, what manufacturing is clears up many common misconceptions. By working together during and after the event, manufacturers can hopefully begin to address the skilled labor shortage they face, connect with future generations, take charge of the public image of manufacturing, and ensure the ongoing prosperity of the industry.
M&H Valve hosted a plant tour on October 25 for Augusta Utilities, Beam’s Contracting and representatives from Core & Main. We are always proud to have the opportunity to showcase our manufacturing facility and our team members.
On Tuesday, October 17, our friends from Matheson Gas treated the Tyler Pipe team to some good ole Texas BBQ. Matheson Gas has been in the Tyler area since 1977 and Tyler Pipe has been purchasing their gas and welding supplies almost from the beginning. To show their appreciation, Luke Porter and his team brought out their BBQ pit, serving tables & trough cooler and fed over 250 hungry Tyler Pipe team members.
As you can see from the pictures their set up is second to none. Luke said that Matheson Gas put the pit trailer together to travel around their supply area for appreciation events like the one at Tyler Pipe.
On October 18, members from Manchester Tank & Equipment Company located in Quincy, Illinois (MTQ) facility participated in the Tri-State MakerFest. MTQ’s General Manager Corrie Eifert, Operations Manager Keith Norris, EHS Manager Rick Nesbit, and HR Manager Mary Kendrick met with approximately 300 students to discuss future career opportunities.
MakerFest is a celebration of the amazing careers available at manufacturing and logistics companies in the Tri-State Region and the young up and coming talent being groomed to fill these careers. The majority of the day was devoted to high school students and adult job seekers visited the exhibits and participated in demonstrations. The mission was to show local up and coming talent what the Tri-State Region has to offer and the advantages of considering their home town for a career and introduce adult job seekers to immediate opportunities that are available with local employers.
Amerex Fire Group participated in National Night Out on October 4 in Trussville, Alabama. They brought communities together with first responders to promote safety. There were more than 800 attendees this year.
Amerex sought to educate the attendees on the importance of fire safety and how to use fire extinguishers.
McWane team members are actively involved in the community in a variety of ways, like Manchester Tank Elkhart HR manager Kim McDowell. Kim recently sat on an Employability Skills Panel for area students to answer questions on what employers are looking for in their field of interest. Kim has also been working with the Elkhart Career Center to build education and training programs for specific positions that are a challenge to find qualified candidates such as maintenance and welders.
Approximately 1,000 students from 16 area high schools took part in the event that was attended by 90 area businesses. The event was featured in The Elkhart Truth in an article written by Blair Yankey.
Click here to read The Elkhart Truth article.
McWane, Inc. president and CEO Ruffner Page was among several of Alabama’s top business leaders who took part in the inaugural Alabama Economic Growth Summit presented by Yellowhammer Multimedia on February 19 at Birmingham’s Ross Bridge conference center. Ruffner was joined on the morning CEO panel by James W. Rane of Great Southern Wood, J. Michael Kemp of Kemp Management Solutions, Alabama Farmers Federation and Alfa Insurance President Jimmy Parnell, and John D. Johns of Protective Life, who moderated the discussion. The Alabama business leaders agreed workforce development and improving infrastructure are keys to job creation in the state.
U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions kicked off the summit Thursday night. Friday’s program started with a breakfast where Governor Robert Bentley challenged businesses and local governments to sell their region to potential employers and create an environment where entrepreneurism can flourish. McWane sponsored the lunch program featuring an interview with U.S. Senator Richard Shelby by Yellowhammer President and CEO Cliff Sims.
During the weekend of November 6-8, AB&I team members Carlos Gonzalez, Enrique Ramirez, and Zeydi Gutierrez embarked on a community outreach project on the other side of the border. They headed toward an area of Ensenada where there is no running water or electricity to participate in building a loft house for a family in need.
Thirteen people participated in the build; eight were from the bay area. Carlos’s sister, Graciela, came from Mexico, D.F., to join the team along with his nephew, Mario. The pre-build took place in a parking lot during the week of October 17. Carlos participated in the pre-build along with approximately 70 people from all ages and walks of life.
Loft houses are prefabricated in church parking lots in the U.S. and assembled in Mexico in just one day. Though not luxurious by any definition, a loft house provides basic protection and shelter from the elements. A loft house is a 12-foot by 12-foot structure with 4 windows, a lockable door and a second story attic loft for sleeping that can be reached by an interior ladder. The kit-house consists of prefabbed panels made from simple building materials widely available at most home improvement warehouses: 2x4s, 2x6s, plywood, and tar paper roofing. The house has a raised wooden floor, covered with linoleum, and is built on concrete piers. One member of the team hauled the kit-house on a trailer all the way from Oakland to the work site.
This particular loft house went to a couple, Maria and Fidel. Maria is blind in one eye and going blind in the other. Both Marian and Fidel work picking tomatoes six days a week and have also worked alongside everyone else in building their new home. They were paying 1,000 pesos a month in rent and couldn’t wait to have a home of their own. Their excitement was overwhelming.
There were so many moments of closeness of community and joy while watching Maria and Fidel get the keys to their new home.
Thank you AB&I for sponsoring Carlos, Enrique, and Zeydi in this community endeavor.
Every year, McWane Ductile-Utah (MDU) team members participate in fundraising for the American Cancer Society Nebo Relay for Life. In fact, they are the biggest fundraising team for the event, and this year was their most successful year so far!
MDU had over 75 team members and their families participate on the day of the relay! They held a raffle for the number of laps walked, and Rick Garcia from Maintenance was the grand prize winner of a paid day off. Rick was elated and said, “I will be using this paid day off to go with my 17 year old daughter Valerie when she gets her port taken out.” Valerie has Hodgkins Lymphoma and MDU is happy to support Rick in being able to spend the day with his daughter. Casting Department Head Richard Simmons won Mr. Relay and Melting Department Head Nathan Thayne won the prize for the most unique boxcar, the Scrap Mobile.
We are proud to report that MDU donated about $23,500 this year! As always, they had a lot of fun and are looking forward to next year’s event.
McWane Ductile-New Jersey (MDNJ) has a Community Advisory Panel (MDCAP) that meets on a monthly basis. The purpose of the MDCAP is to establish a forum for the regular candid and constructive communication between MDNJ and the local community. The MDCAP contributes approximately $60,000 annually to community projects, organizations, and events, and MDNJ makes separate donations to the local community. For example, MDNJ recently revamped their locker room and donated the left over lockers to a local homeless shelter.
The MDCAP donates quarterly to five local food banks that help feed those in need with a meal on a daily basis. They also awarded 8 scholarships – $2,000 each – in 2015 to local high school students to help further their education. During the holidays, they participate in the Polar Express and supply tickets to families who would not be able to afford this event, and provide hats, gloves, and food to local residents at the annual tree lighting ceremony. The MDCAP also adopts families during the holidays and provides presents and gift cards so every child will have something special at Christmas.
A few of the charities the MDCAP has supported are:
- Big Brother Big Sister
- Safe Harbor Homeless Shelter
- Wounded Warrior Project
- Cancer Support Community
- Wrangler to the Rescue
- Relay for Life
- Steele Hill Youth Organization
- Boy Scouts of America
Through the CAP, MDNJ also encourages team members to get more involved in the community. Pictured is one of the many sheds MDNJ has throughout the facility where team members put cardboard and paper items for recycling to help Norwescap, a local children’s center that provides summer classes and after school programs.