John McNally 0000-00-00 00:00:00
A new facility for GE, TV news and a company's 75th anniversary Compiled by John McNally firstname.lastname@example.org GE Appliances unveils new hybrid water heater manufacturing facility Louisville, Ky.-based GE Appliances held a "firstoff- the-line" event Feb. 10 at Appliance Park to celebrate the launch of its Energy Star-qualified GeoSpring hybrid water heater. The new 50-gallon GeoSpring is an upgrade from the original, which was launched in 2009. It combines heat-pump technology with conventional electric heating systems found in modern water heaters, reduces energy consumption by 62% from conventional electric water heaters, and can save the average consumer $325 each year, according to Steve Downer, GE product general manager, water products. The hybrid water heater will sell through wholesale channels such as Ferguson (nationally). The GeoSpring manufacturing facility is the first to open at Appliance Park in 50 years. The $38 million investment in GeoSpring is part of GE's total $1 billion commitment to the GE Appliances' business, as well as the creation of 1,300 new jobs in the United States by 2014. The facility uses lean manufacturing to eliminate waste during the manufacturing process - reducing the number of hours per unit to lower the cost, said Richard Calvaruso, GE Appliances lean leader. GeoSpring parts are kitted so they are easier to find by workers on the assembly line, improving productivity. But the true success of the program, he noted, is the team approach and the development of people to solve problems. Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear, Lieutenant Governor Jerry Abramson, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and U.S. Rep. Jerry Yarmuth were among those on hand for the factory event. - Kelly Faloon Bootz Industries celebrates 75th anniversary It's been an interesting 75 years of business for Bootz Industries. "From bombs to bathtubs," the manufacturer says. Beginning in 1937 when William R. Bootz and his associates bought Crescent Stove Works, Bootz began fabricating steel products for the U.S. Army and Navy and was honored with Army and Navy Excellence awards during World War II. After the war ended in 1945, the company added production to include lines from Whirlpool, Coleman Co., Hunter Fan and more for the U.S. government. Bootz started its longtime partnership with General Electric in 1960 and made stamped steel lavatories and sink shapes - which evolved into manufacturing bathtubs - during the 1970s. The company bought Peerless Pottery in 1979 and converted it to make porcelain-on-steel bathtubs, lavatories and kitchen sinks. Since 2000, Bootz has bought and installed new equipment and opened a new distribution center. Those improvements have helped grow its production abilities and meet the needs of the "porcelain-onsteel" market. Bootz still is a privately owned and operated company run by President and CEO Peter DeSocio and Thomas Bootz, vice president of engineering and quality control. PEOPLE ON THE MOVE Central States Industrial Supply named Todd Ford its new president and CEO. Ford has been with Central States since 2006. In other Central States news, Paul Holz was hired to Central States' Instrumentation Group, while Corry Walton was named president of CPI, a wholly owned subsidiary of Central States. Walton has been with the company for more than 20 years. Crane Energy Solutions hired Javier Suarez as a global business line manager for cast steel valves. Suarez has 13 years experience in the energy, oil and gas sectors and 17 years of management experience. Hart & Cooley Marketing Manager Larry Devitt announced his retirement in February. Devitt had been with Hart & Cooley and predecessor companies for 16 years. Milwaukee-based manufacturer Graff promoted Chris Kulig to strategy and business development manager. The position was created for Kulig, who will encompass a variety of strategic business directions that will continue to expand Graff's brand within the home design market. PEOPLE ON THE MOVE Sloan Valve Co. Hired Daniel Gleiberman as its manager of product compliance and government affairs. He becomes the company's liaison on plumbing standards with governing bodies. Plumbing Manufacturers International President Stewart Yang (Kohler Co.) Selected Rick Reles (Kohler Co.) To co-chair the Marketing Council for a second term. Reles will serve with current co-chair Tim Doyle (Amerikam). Yang also selected Sloan's Gleiberman to co-chair the Government Affairs Standing Committee with David MacNair (InSinkErator). Each will serve a three-year term, which started April 1 at the 2012 PMI Spring Conference. OBITUARIES Karl Gustave Adrian Larson, President and CEO of the Gustave A. Larson Co. In Pewaukee, Wis., died March 4 at the age of 80 in Palm Springs, Calif. Larson made many contributions to the HVAC industry. Over the past 18 years, dozens of University of Colorado-Boulder students have been beneficiaries of financial support through the Larson Family Fellowship, and almost 1,000 engineering students have passed through Larson Lab on their paths to professional careers in the building industry. AF Supply's Sol Friedman died March 13 at the age of 93. Friedman's father, Alex, started AF Supply in 1922 and Sol joined the company in 1946.
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