Novation Industries® Announces new hires and executive promotions
McHenry, Illinois, July 11, 2013 — Novation Industries® announces new growth strategy to support its recent name change and business expansion to offer holistic product development in addition to plastic injection molding and contract manufacturing services. The company has made executive personnel changes as well as added staff to support its expanded capabilities in areas of product design, engineering and manufacturing.
Executive staff changes included the promotion of Scott Baxter from COO to president. Baxter brings more than 30 years of senior level operations management experience, including 15 years with a medical product device company and prior work involving oversight of start-up engineering and manufacturing operations within a fortune 500 company. He holds a Masters in Business Administration, a B.S. in Industrial / Mechanical Technology and an A.A.S. in Mechanical Technology.
Chris Metz, the company’s second-generation owner and previous president since 1987, moved to CEO, continuing his active role in the company overseeing strategic direction and executing ongoing integration of core values, including exceptional customer service and on-time delivery. Since taking over the company in 1982, Metz incorporated an ever-increasing array of value-added manufacturing capabilities and front-end services including cutting-edge design and engineering support. These changes, combined with the recent staff changes, have positioned the company for its expansion into integrated product development.
“Scott brings experience and strong leadership qualities that will help to guide our future growth and expansion,” stated Metz, CEO. “He has provided exceptional management of our operations for four years in his role as COO and has, during that time, implemented production and operational efficiencies that have greatly benefited our customers. His shared vision to broaden our service offering and his experience in steering organizational transitions will prove to be a strong advantage during the next phase of our company’s evolution.”
Company staff changes have also included three new hires to support expanded engineering and manufacturing services:
James Agro was recently hired as the company’s engineering manager. Agro’s background includes more than 20 years of experience working in the lighting products industry. During his career he has served as project and lead engineer on new product development projects, worked in product management roles, and, most recently, served as director of engineering. He received schooling in mechanical engineering through Southern Illinois University and earned an A.S. in Mechanical Technology and Computer Aided Design.
Jeffrey Lenzen was brought on as the manufacturing and project engineer. Lenzen brings more than 15 years experience at Motorola Inc. mobile device division where he served in mechanical engineering and materials engineering roles. Earlier in his career, he served as a project engineer designing industrial automation equipment. Lenzen holds a B.S. Degree in Business Management from Columbia College, and obtained both an A.A.S. in Business Management and an A.S. in Computer Aided Drafting and Design.
Richard Young was recently hired to serve as maintenance manager and, in his new role, will work to uphold the company’s high standards of cleanliness, organization and equipment reliability. His experience includes 10 years in facilities and maintenance management. Prior to his industrial experience, Young served for three years as a manager in the Navy on the USS Helena nuclear attack submarine and oversaw a team of engineers and crew.
“Our new staff members bring tremendous talent to our manufacturing and engineering departments,” stated Baxter. “Their combined experience brings to Novation additional capability in lighting, industrial equipment design, electronics and automation. We continue to look for ways to strengthen our internal ability so that we can add value to our customers’ product development and manufacturing needs.”
Novation Industries®, which has been in business for more than 45 years as WM Plastics, has provided industrial and consumer whole product assembly and component production for customers nationwide. Depending upon customer needs to take a product to market or to augment its current capabilities with one or more outsourced services, Novation brings adaptable work processes to offer either holistic integrated development or individualized services in any area of industrial design, plastic injection molding, manufacturing and assembly operations and logistics or fulfillment services.
The new capability to provide wholly integrated product development offers customers a host of efficiencies such as:
- Parallel efficiencies
- Integrated design solutions
- Phase-gate governance
- Single-point accountability
“Novation is always willing to offer design changes, challenge technologies and prove designs,” said Steve Bankemper, commodity manager for Sloan Industries and long-time customer. “The responsiveness and commitment to their customer is unequaled to others I have worked with.”
Novation Industries®, formerly WM Plastics, specializes in integrated product development services including industrial design, injection molding and sourcing, contract manufacturing, and logistics. The company’s core ideology drives
innovation, efficiency and a customer-centric focus. Novation Industries® has considerable expertise within diverse markets and has worked with major consumer products, medical and merchandising manufacturers to provide product development solutions.