New members of the Plastics Hall of Fame named

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Leaders from the plastics machinery, materials, recycling, packaging and trade association will join the Plastics Hall of Fame at an awards dinner at NPE2018.

The Plastics Academy announced the 10 new members 4 Jan, and will induct them 6 May at NPE in Orlando, Florida.

“These new inductees proudly represent the length and breadth of our great industry with a wealth of accomplishments in polymer science, engineering, manufacturing, equipment design and business management,” said Plastics Academy President Jay Gardiner. “Each individual has been elected by the living members after a lengthy screening process, which this year began with a record number of nominations.”

New members of the Plastics Hall of Fame are:

Robert Ackley, left, and Ira Boots

Robert Ackley

A former draftsman and mechanical engineer, Robert Ackley began working at Davis-Standard LLC in 1959, as an apprentice draftsman. He moved up the ranks to become president of the extrusion machinery manufacturer, and retired from that top position in 2005.

Ackley led Davis-Standard through an acquisition spree in the 1990s as the company in Pawcatuck, Conn., diversified by purchasing Sterling accumulator-head blow moulding machines, Egan film equipment, Killion Extruders and other companies.

He was instrumental in combining Davis-Standard with Black Clawson Converting Machinery Co.

Ackley also has served on industry trade associations. He was chairman of the Plastics Industry Association (formerly SPI), in 2000-2001. He also served as a board member of the National Plastics Center and Museum.

Ira Boots

Ira Boots joined Berry Plastics Corp. in Evansville, Ind., then known as Imperial Plastics, in 1978 to supervise tool making and product design. He progressed through the management ranks to become chairman, chief executive officer and president. At the same time, Berry grew rapidly, through acquiring 26 companies, to become a major force in packaging.

Boots was an early advocate for automation and a strong proponent of growth. He is now chairman of machinery manufacturer Milacron Holdings Corp.

Karlheinz Bourdon, left, and David Cornell

Karlheinz Bourdon

A German mechanical engineer and developer of injection moulding technology, Karlheinz Bourdon is known as a technical expert.

He held leadership positions in plastics machinery in both Europe and the United States, Bourdon joined German press maker Klockner Ferromatik, a pioneer of multishot moulding, with expertise in revolving moulds.

Milacron Inc. bought Ferromatik in 1993. Bourdon ended up moving to the United States and heading up the company’s global machinery business. He left Milacron in 2007, and later joined Munich-based KraussMaffei Group GmbH as managing director of KraussMaffei Technologies.

Bourdon now is senior vice president of integration, where he works with KraussMaffei and China National Chemical Corp. (ChemChina), which bought KraussMaffei in 2016.

Bourdon also has been active with the boards of VDMA, the German plastics and rubber machinery association, and Euromap, the counterpart for Europe.

David Cornell

A pioneer in PET bottle commercialisation at Eastman Chemical Co., David Cornell went on to become a champion of recycling as technical director at the Association of Plastic Recyclers.

At APR, he developed the foundation for the continuing development of processes for collection and recycling of many plastics.

Cornell is frequently quoted in news reports about recycling issues.

Donna Davis, left, and Donald Graham.

Donna Davis

A chemical engineer, Donna Davis has worked at ExxonMobil Chemical Co. in process design and the development of polyolefin materials, from early gas-phase technology through metallocene catalyzed polymers.

She was president of the Society of Plastics Engineers from 2003-2004, where she was involved in strategic activities that impacted the industry.

Davis also was the driving force behind the creation of the Polyolefins Conference. Davis will become the third woman in the Plastics Hall of Fame, joining Maureen Steinwall, president and CEO of custom injection moulder Steinwall Inc., and Stephanie Kwolek, the inventor of Kevlar.

Donald Graham

Donald Graham is an inventor, innovator and a businessman. He founded Graham Engineering, a manufacturer of high-speed plastics machinery, and invented the rotary wheel line for extrusion blow moulding of plastic containers. He also started Graham Packaging Co., a major blow moulder based in York, Pa.

Graham became known for financial deal-making, founding Graham Group, an alliance of industrial business and investment management firms that purchased a number of companies, including packaging major Berry Plastics, extruder maker American Kuhne Inc., sheet line maker Welex and other plastics-related companies.

The companies have grown through mergers and acquisitions to become a multi-billion-dollar enterprise, according to the Plastics Academy.

Max McDaniel, left, and Steve Maguire.

Max McDaniel

Max McDaniel, a senior fellow scientist and catalyst technology expert at Chevron Phillips Chemical Co., holds more than 370 patents and has written hundreds of peer-reviewed technical papers.

Much of his work has involved polyethylene.

McDaniel has received numerous awards and recognition worldwide, including several awards from the American Chemical Society and Phillips Petroleum.

Steve Maguire

Steve Maguire started out in 1977 working in his house to build a better pump for liquid colour. Maguire Products Inc., based in Aston, Pennsylvania, has expanded into a global company making gravimetric blenders, feeders and other auxiliary equipment.

He remains a prolific inventor, holding more than 41 patents, and Maguire equipment appears in most processing plants today. Among his inventions are designs for the liquid colour pump, the weigh-scale blender and gravimetric colour/additive feeder that gives improved accuracy in colour and additive metering.

Martin Stark, left, and Hideo Tanaka.

Martin Stark

The long-time president of Bekum America Corp., Martin Stark is now chairman of the blow moulding machinery supplier in Williamston, Michigan.

He has continuously strived to promote excellence, provide process innovations, customer experience and quality.

Stark’s lifelong devotion to education has resulted in the creation of many programmes, from apprenticeships through graduate education in plastics.

Hideo Tanaka

A developer and designer of processes and machinery, Hideo Tanaka helped grow Japanese injection press maker Toshiba Machine Co. Ltd., to a prominent position in the global plastics machinery industry.

His engineering designs spanned a wide range of processes from nylon inflation blown film through all-electric injection moulding machines.

“We look forward to honouring the past at the Hall of Fame gala and then see the future of our industry at NPE2018,” said Bill Carteaux, president and CEO of the Plastics Industry Association in Washington.


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