DMI Companies News
DMI Companies News

National Intern Day

National Intern Day is a holiday dedicated to recognizing and celebrating the future leaders of the world. DMI Companies is proud to recognize our interns and the impressive work they do. Thank you Stephen Gerba, Douglas Gudenburr, Surya Mahadevan, Anthony DeMarco and Jarrett Mosco!

Please CLICK HERE to learn more about our wonderful interns!

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DMI Achieves Zero Waste to Landfill, First of its Kind for a PA Manufacturing Facility

DMI Companies is proud to announce that their main manufacturing facility, located in Monongahela PA, is now classified as a zero waste to landfill facility.

Spearheaded by an overall corporate vision of a sustainable future and innovative energy efficient product design, DMI is the first manufacturing facility to achieve the TRUE Silver zero waste to landfill certification in the state of Pennsylvania.  Zero waste to landfill certifications are also a relatively new concept in the HVAC Parts and Accessories Manufacturing Industry.  Typically manufacturing processes are large waste producers, but DMI is among the first in their industry to cease sending waste to landfills through training, audits, and hard work from their employees.  Landfill waste diversion through the TRUE system is a whole systems approach aimed at changing how materials flow through society, and promotes processes that consider the entire lifecycle of products used within a facility with an end goal of zero waste.  The idea of becoming a zero waste facility started for DMI in 2011 and after years of hard work, led by Sustainability & Environmental Compliance Manager Lisa Pavan, made final push for the classification beginning in November of 2018,

“We started with a goal that if something could not be reduced, reused, repaired, rebuilt, refurbished, refinished, resold, recycled, or composted - then it should be restricted, re-designed, or removed from our production pipeline.  Most of our production lines can go through many different metal alloys and other materials on a daily basis, so we saw initial hurdles eliminating recycling contamination.  However, we worked hard to overcome those hurdles through training, audits, and employee buy in from the factory floor all the way to the corporate office.” – Lisa Pavan, Sustainability & Environmental Compliance Manager

In 2018, DMI diverted 94.49% of their waste from incineration/landfill through recycle, reuse and reduction programs and plans to improve that diversion rate by 1% annually.  DMI sought out to obtain 38 credits on the TRUE Silver scale, but exceeded that by receiving 41 out of the maximum 45 on March 15th, 2019.  TRUE- certified projects are environmentally responsible and achieve a minimum of 90 percent waste diversion. The program helps facilities turn waste into savings, cut greenhouse gas emissions, manage risk, reinvest resources and create jobs.

This certification is one of many accomplishments in sustainability DMI has achieved in their 40 year history of manufacturing HVAC Duct Systems and Accessories.  DMI was founded on the idea that their products should increase the efficiency of the whole HVAC system.  This practice carries on today as DMI continues to design and manufacture energy efficient products and pursues sustainable business practices.

“We focus on Sustainability in our corporate strategy through innovative products, operations, and employee engagement (i.e. culture change).  We were introduced to this model many years ago and have continually embraced the concept.  It’s time to bring it back to the forefront of our discerning employees at DMI.  We commit ourselves to integrating sustainability as a core value for DMI; protecting the health and well-being of our employees and our communities.  We actively participate in every community in which we operate.  We want these communities to thrive.” – Raymond Yeager, President/CEO of DMI

To read DMI’s full TRUE Silver evaluation report, CLICK HERE.

For more information about TRUE and GBCI, we encourage you to learn more at http://true.gbci.org.
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TRUE Silver Certification Celebration

We had a great turn out for our TRUE Silver Certification Celebration held on June 6th.

Representatives from National and Pittsburgh, PA based Sustainability and Green Building Organizations were in attendance.  Including Keynote Speaker - Dr. Walter G. Copan, Under Secretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology and NIST Director and Award Presenter - Isaac Smith, Data & Performance Director Green Building Alliance.

For more info on Keynote Speaker Dr. Copan, please read his bio on the NIST website.

This TRUE Silver Certification is one of many accomplishments in sustainability DMI has achieved in their 40 year history of manufacturing HVAC Duct Systems and Accessories.  DMI was founded on the idea that their products should increase the efficiency of the whole HVAC system.  This practice carries on today as DMI continues to design and manufacture energy efficient products and pursues sustainable business practices.

 “We focus on Sustainability in our corporate strategy through innovative products, operations, and employee engagement (i.e. culture change).  We were introduced to this model many years ago and have continually embraced the concept.  It’s time to bring it back to the forefront of our discerning employees at DMI.  We commit ourselves to integrating sustainability as a core value for DMI; protecting the health and well-being of our employees and our communities.  We actively participate in every community in which we operate.  We want these communities to thrive.” – Raymond Yeager, President/CEO of DMI

To read DMI’s full TRUE Silver evaluation report, Click Here.  For more information about TRUE and GBCI, we encourage you to learn more at http://true.gbci.org.

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2018 Sustainability Report

Our annual report for 2018 is out now. Highlights of the report include our Zero Waste Strategy, Energy and Water Conservation, and much more.

Message From DMI President and CEO, Ray Yeager

In previous messages I have stressed that a challenging environment is commonplace in today’s business environment. Our success breeds more success in a multitude of ways. With that in mind this Annual Report outlines a small snippet of DMI Sustainability efforts for our stakeholders.

Since 2008 I have had the opportunity and privilege to speak with employees, industry groups, universities, legislators, various administrative agencies, and our board of directors regarding Sustainability. Our awareness has evolved and hopefully improved, but the bottom line is that I have attempted to reinforce Culture Change.

This message illustrates our employee efforts to “make a difference.” From the board room to the shop floor, you all contribute. The entire supply chain: builders, customers and vendors contribute as well. Here are just a few examples of what YOU have accomplished over the years:

  • The invention of the Ductmate 35 connector was an innovative product. It became not only the company moniker, but represented the company’s cornerstone business of creating high-quality HVAC accessories.
  • The invention of a down set corner design, further improving the consistency and sealing properties of the 35 system. A Ductmate connection system gives a nearly airtight cross connection, and when installed properly, reduces leakage to less than 1% at the connection.
  • Sandwich Access Doors, a line of low leakage access doors.
  • GreenSeam Pipe and Fittings, a product developed to target the increasingly stringent sealing requirements in commercial and residential HVAC applications. These highly efficient systems are often found in buildings with LEED certification.
  • DMI Headquarters achieving Historical Landmark Status. This was a result of extensive renovations and a detailed restoration. The office was built in 1889 and is now one of the top energy efficient buildings of its time in the world. DMI is a focal point of Charleroi’s downtown corridor by giving the local economy a much needed boost.
  • Our employees contribute to committees in many industry associations such as the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE). ASHRAE is the prevailing authority in the HVAC industry. Ductmate has been a member of ASHRAE and the Duct Design Technical Committee for over 20 years. This committee sets the standard for design throughout the industry.
  • DMI was awarded Sustainable Manufacturer of the Year in Pittsburgh in 2008. We were recognized as “THE BEST” firm in the region for our green thinking and sustainable business practices.
  • The acquisition of Linx Industries, the world-leading manufacturer of the Safe System and our newest innovation – Linx 21. These self-sealing product lines meet ASHRAE Air Leakage Class 3.

As the region’s leader in Sustainability, we participate in Sustainable Pittsburgh CEOs for Sustainability program. A group of senior executives dedicated to “sharing” ideas that inspire innovations for the betterment of our environment.

DMI’s Charleroi office and Monongahela facility recently committed to be aligned with the 2030 Challenge. For more on this exciting challenge, check out: https://architecture2030.org/

These are just a fraction of the efforts since our incorporation. As you can see, we began our Sustainable quest from the very beginning.

Remember, we focus on Sustainability in our Corporate Strategy through innovative products, operations, and employee engagement (i.e. Culture Change). Speaking of Culture Change, look for the next installment to include a reemergence of “100 Doors to Sustainability.” We were introduced to this model many years ago and have continually embraced the concept. It’s time to bring it back to the forefront of our discerning employees at DMI.

We commit ourselves to integrating Sustainability as a core value for DMI; protecting the health and well-being of our employees and our communities. We actively participate in every community in which we operate. We want these communities to thrive.

- Ray Yeager, President/CEO

Zero Waste Strategy

The volatility in the recycling markets in 2018 made it abundantly clear how crucial a zero waste strategy is to DMI. Our largest production site, located in Monongahela, PA has been striving toward a zero waste goal for the past seven years. In 2018 we diverted 94.49% of our waste from incineration/landfill through recycle, reuse and reduction programs and we will strive to improve our diversion rate by 1% annually.

Our waste program is continually proving to benefit the bottom line with a net profit of $42,000 over 2017. Below are a few of the items that were recycled/reused in 2018:

  • 72.49 tons of wood recycled
  • 38.69 tons of cardboard recycled
  • 20.31 tons of single stream (plastic bottles, paper & aluminum cans) recycle
  • 4.66 tons of plastic film recycled
  • 2,841 tons of metals recycled
  • 65.09 tons of wood pallets reused
  • 3.68 tons plastic coil spacers reused

A Green Procurement policy was implemented to acknowledge and support DMI Sustainability programs, initiatives and minimize potential environmental impact. The Procurement Department will endeavor to source and purchase green and environmentally preferred products, and require packaging material for all purchased products and commodities to be of a recycled content. This policy supports the Sustainability Department initiative to reduce-reuse-recycle through minimizing the creation of waste, reusing materials and the purchase of green products wherever and whenever possible.

We have made the commitment to certify the Monongahela site by the end of the first quarter in 2019 with Total Resource Use & Efficiency (TRUE) administered by GBCI. The TRUE Zero Waste certification program is an Assessor-based program that rates how well facilities perform in minimizing their non-hazardous, solid wastes and maximizing their efficiency in the use of resources. This program is used to define, pursue and achieve zero waste goals, reduce your carbon footprint and support public health. The program goes beyond diversion numbers and focuses on the upstream policies and practices that make zero waste successful and impactful to the bottom line. Implementation of this credit system offers a platform for continual improvement that leads to attainment of advanced certification levels and aligns with sustainability’s core concepts - people, planet, profit.

- Lisa Pavan, Sustainability/Environmental Compliance Manager

Energy and Water Conservation

Energy conservation continues to be a focus and top priority at all of our facilities. DMI continues to take advantage of energy rebates to improve our infrastructure, while simultaneously reducing energy consumption and costs. Solar panels, LED lighting, sky-lights, energy efficient air compressors and occupancy motion sensors are a few examples of our continued initiatives. Below are our combined reductions for 2018:

  • Electric consumption - 9.59%
  • Water consumption -23.83%
  • Natural Gas consumption +74%

We continue to have success conserving electric and water, but we missed our target across all sites with natural gas usage. We addressed gas leaks and installed air curtains that quickly adjusted our usage that is already proving a nice impact and reduction for 2019.

We participated in Energy Efficiency Day with social media promotion and highlighted energy conservation at our annual Manufacturing Day with local school students.

- Lisa Pavan, Sustainability/Environmental Compliance Manager

Workforce Development

At DMI, we take great pride in our innovative product design and quality production practices. We take even greater pride in the people who work here who make these things happen. A top-notch workforce is essential to any business’s success and DMI has one of the best.

Like most businesses these days, DMI is facing the difficulties of finding and retaining the skilled workforce necessary to remain competitive moving forward. Industry growth and a strong economy have fueled the demand for skilled employees. Automation and technology have enabled market expansion and sales growth which has also increased the need for a skilled workforce. While automated systems now perform much of the labor intensive, more mundane tasks, more employees are being upskilled to collaborate with, operate and maintain this technology. The increase in technology requires more employees with advanced skill levels. In addition to these positive growth factors, industry is facing an aging workforce which will only add to the need for new, skilled workers as experienced workers retire.

DMI takes a proactive approach to ensuring that we continue to have the best workforce in our industry by providing a multitude of workforce development programs. We have developed multiple career paths throughout DMI and provide classroom and on-the-job training to our employees. As we continue to leverage technology to grow our business, we will provide additional training and development opportunities to enable our employees to increase their skill levels and advance in their career goals.

We also work closely with several local school districts through a variety of programs to develop our future workforce. Through programs like our annual Manufacturing Day event, BotsIQ, tours, co-ops, internships and more, we provide opportunities for area youth to learn valuable skills while experiencing a variety of wonderful career opportunities in the manufacturing industry. Several of these students have continued on to become full-fledged DMI employees with fantastic career potential. In 2018, we were recognized by the Consortium for Public Education as a “Champion of Learning” in recognition of our work to “create and support outstanding learning experiences for students across our region.”

In addition to our dedication to education and career development, we are committed to safety and community. As a result of every employees’ efforts, DMI was recognized by SMOHIT as a Safety Champion. Through employee donations and fundraising, our Children’s Charities program contributes to multiple causes throughout the year including our 15th year of granting a wish through The Make-a-Wish Foundation. We believe strongly that by investing, not only in today’s workforce, but also in the workforce of the future, we can create a better industry, a stronger workforce and a healthier community.

- Katie Hager, Workforce Development Manager

People

Steve Jobs was quoted as saying “All I ask is that today, you do the best work of your life”. This is a request every employer should have of their team and one that DMI takes very seriously. In return, the company provides a stable and safe workplace with a fair compensation package that includes generous health and retirement benefits.

Our team is made up of a group of individuals diverse in education, training and work experience. We each strive to do our best every day to help meet the needs of customers and goals of the Company. We continue to evolve as a group and think out of the box to improve our processes, efficiencies and cost savings.

DMI continues to be proud of its past and excited about its future. We are built on a strong foundation of ownership and senior management who have steered our path and develop those who will continue the journey. From our newest hire to 40 years of service, our team continues to adapt to changes in the industry, economy and compliance requirements. There is no doubt as we continue to grow in size and capabilities, we will face each challenge and overcome it.

In 2018, unemployment rates fell below 4% and hit a 17 year low. Through 2030, it is believed that the Baby Boomer generation is reaching age 65 at a level of 10,000 people per day. These facts are causing large gaps in the candidate pool for all companies. Each opening is a challenge to fill as competition is high and candidates are few. It also requires hiring managers to look beyond education and work experience when identifying a candidate with potential. It is now necessary to determine cultural fit and trainability as key indicators of a candidate’s suitability for a role. DMI continues to show that manufacturing in the USA isn’t going anywhere and needs great people. We are pleased to know we act with integrity in each decision made.

We have great people that do great things. Throughout our Company, we have made huge strides in being more sustainable to the earth, continue to raise money for charities that give back to the communities that we live and work in, and focus on the health and welfare of our employees and their families.

- Melissa Lourimore, Human Resource Manager

Financial Growth and Stability

DMI takes pride in being a socially responsible corporate citizen and recognizes the importance of Sustainability in that role. We believe that there can most often be great harmony between environmental, ecological, and economical “sustainability”, and always strive to act in ways that ensure those harmonies. Our continued growth and financial success will never compromise our commitment to the Sustainability of future generations!

- Dan Bruno, Chief Financial Officer

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Vote Now For Elizabeth Forward Middle School

For the third year, DMI is participating in the Catalyst Connection “What’s So Cool About Manufacturing” video contest. The contest pairs local middle school students with a manufacturer so the kids can learn about the many wonderful manufacturing career opportunities and the skills they need to start developing to prepare for these careers.

This year, we were paired with an amazing group of students from Elizabeth Forward Middle School.  After touring our Monongahela facility, the students created a 3 minute video showcasing what they think is so cool about manufacturing.

Please check out their video and support the student team from Elizabeth Forward Middle School, DMI and manufacturing, as a whole, by clicking on the link below and voting for Elizabeth Forward.  You can vote as many times as you would like and every vote counts so vote often between now and when voting ends this Friday at 5pm.

Vote Now!

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Third Annual Manufacturing Day

On October 3, 2018, DMI Monongahela opened its doors to approximately 100 guests from seven local school districts and the surrounding community to celebrate its Third Annual Manufacturing (MFG) Day.

The vast majority of these guests were students and faculty from Elizabeth Forward, Belle Vernon, Ringgold, Charleroi, Bentworth, Mon Valley Career and Technology Center, and Upper St. Clair high schools.  Participants learned about our commitment to safety and sustainability, the variety of exciting career opportunities we offer, and the skills required to be successful in these careers.

Throughout the day, our visitors received a plant tour, participated in a hands-on activity that exemplified what they might do in their field of interest, and got to talk directly with DMI employees who are already working in the careers in which they are interested.  They learned that there are multiple career opportunities available at DMI and a variety of paths they can take to reach those career goals.  The majority of the students’ career interests were in the areas of Production, Welding and Engineering.  Westmoreland County Community College was on hand to conduct a robotics activity and talk with students interested in pursuing college/skills training after high school.  We have received fantastic feedback from those who attended and many of them are now interested in completing a Work Experience (such as a job shadow or co-op/internship) or coming to work at DMI after they graduate.

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2017 Annual Sustainability Report

The board of directors, management and our strategic planning group meet throughout the year to develop a framework for success. As a reminder, a few years back we adopted DMI2020, which is our current “roadmap for the future.” This updated strategic plan integrates our sustainable agenda into our core business strategy. Our corporate focus is on continuous improvement – minimizing our environment impact while maximizing our value.

DMI is building a better world for ourselves and our children by providing a sustainable environment through our products, operations and personal conduct

DMI Strategic Plan: 
Improved Vision –the preferred manufacturer and supplier of innovative, sustainable products while continuing to serve the building industry.
Sustainable Strategic Objective — Operate DMI Companies in a manner that protects and promotes the health and well-being of the environment.
Sustainable Initiatives for Culture Change –look to build a better world for the future by creating a sustainable framework for the environment. 

Working together, we are making clear progress toward future at DMI Companies.  We continue to challenge ourselves with aggressive targets, higher expectations, and a broader mindset about incremental improvement among our company and its employees.  I am very proud of what we have accomplished since undertaking this journey more than 10 years ago.

Some areas where we made demonstrable progress include:
Energy Savings
Water Savings
Material and Waste Savings
Stakeholder Engagement
New Products and Services
Launching our Sustainability Website
Ethics and Professionalism

To read the full 2017 Annual Stability Report, please click here.

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DMI Donates a Wish to Make A Wish

Today members of the DMI Companies Children’s Charities Committee Melissa Lourimore, Donna Pauley, and Carol Singer accompanied Ray Yeager to the annual Make A Wish broadcast in downtown Pittsburgh.

Today members of the DMI Companies Children’s Charities Committee Melissa Lourimore, Donna Pauley, and Carol Singer accompanied Ray Yeager to the annual Make A Wish broadcast in downtown Pittsburgh.   Ray, the Committee, and DMI are proud to donate another Wish this year to a child in need.  In what has become one of DMI’s most cherished holiday traditions, this marks the 14th straight year that DMI has donated a Wish bringing the total DMI has donated to over $59,000.

Happy Holidays from everyone at DMI Companies!

Take a listen to the broadcast.

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DMI Manufacturing (MFG) Day 2017

On Wednesday, October 4, DMI Companies hosted students and faculty from six local schools as a part of their Second Annual Manufacturing (MFG) Day event. MFG Day is a nationwide event designed to provide interested students an opportunity to explore the variety of fascinating and profitable careers in modern manufacturing.

Over 60 students from Belle Vernon, Ringgold, Charleroi, Bentworth, Elizabeth Forward and Fayette County Career and Technical Institute participated in a variety of activities designed to give them a taste of how technology has revolutionized manufacturing and created exciting and rewarding new career opportunities.  Over lunch, they engaged in small-group discussions with DMI employees who currently work in the same high-demand manufacturing occupations in which the students are interested.  They finished the day by hearing from recent graduates from their schools who participated in work experiences at DMI and learning how their work experience helped prepare them for their career of choice.

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Wagoner, OK - Coming Soon!

On September 19, DMI Companies hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony to announce our newest facility in Wagoner, Oklahoma.

At the ceremony, which was held onsite at the Wagoner location, DMI was welcomed to the community by several Oklahoma state and local officials, including: Wagoner Mayor Albert Jones, State Senator Kim David, Local Union 270 Business Manager David Johnson, Joe Powell with SMART International, and Christie Myers, site location manager with the Oklahoma Department of Commerce.

With operations expected to begin by year's end, the local community is excited for the career opportunities that DMI brings to the area. The new facility will be manufacturing for all 5 of our business units - Ductmate, Aire Technologies, GreenSeam, CL Ward, and Linx Industries.

Local newspapers, the Muskogee Phoenix and the Wagoner County American-Tribune, also featured the event in their weekly news stories. Please click on the links to read the full articles.

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KEEA Visits DMI

On Thursday, August 24th, the Keystone Energy Efficiency Alliance visited DMI to capture our commitment to sustainability, how we apply it, and how our products themselves are energy efficient.

The visit included a plant tour and interviews with Ray Yeager - President and CEO; Lisa Pavan - Sustainability & Environmental Compliance Manager; and Doug Gudenburr - Director of Operations.

DMI is one of several organizations that will be featured, including SMART Local 12, in a film which will be debuted at their annual conference in Hershey, PA this October.

For more information on Keystone Energy Efficiency Alliance, please visit KEEAlliance.org.

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Dream It Do It PA

In an effort to increase interest in manufacturing careers, Catalyst Connection, a regional economic development organization, paired companies with local schools to answer the question, “What’s so cool about manufacturing?”. Each school was then asked to create a three-minute video, with the help of a local manufacturer, which showcases what they feel makes manufacturing cool.

DMI Companies was proud to be paired with Charleroi Middle School.  The students and their sponsoring teacher visited our plant and corporate facilities to shoot video of what we do and interview employees about what makes DMI manufacturing so cool.  The students were able to produce and edit a very creative, professional video themselves that we feel really does highlight what’s so cool about manufacturing at DMI. 

The video that receives the most online votes will earn the “People’s Choice Award” so please go online to show your support for the DMI/Charleroi Middle School video.  Voting is now live, but ends this Friday February 17th. 

Click on this link http://dreamitdoitpa.com/contests/2017-pittsburgh-video-contest/ and scroll to Charleroi Area/Ductmate to watch the video.  Be sure to vote by clicking the Vote button beneath “Ductmate.”  A number of other local schools and businesses also participated to increase interest in local manufacturing careers in the area. 

Please forward this link to anyone else you think may be interested in promoting manufacturing careers and encourage them to vote, as well. 

You can vote more than once!  So as they say in Chicago "vote early and vote often". 

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Manufacturing Day 2016 Video



A Program Designed to Expand Knowledge of Manufacturing, Improve Public Perception of Manufacturing Career Opportunities.

In celebration of Manufacturing Day 2016, DMI Companies opened its doors on October 5th to students, guidance counselors and teachers from three local high schools.  Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce Laura Taylor-Kale, Managing Partnerat Beck and Thomas, P.C John Thomas, and Congressman Tim Murphy were also in attendance to speak with the students as part of an effort to change people’s perceptions about today’s manufacturing environment and draw attention to the outstanding opportunities that a career in manufacturing can provide.

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DMI Companies Hosts Manufacturing Day Event On 10/05/16 For Mon Valley Community

A Program Designed to Expand Knowledge of Manufacturing, Improve Public Perception of Manufacturing Career Opportunities.

In celebration of Manufacturing Day 2016, DMI Companies opened its doors on October 5th to students, guidance counselors and teachers from three local high schools.  Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce Laura Taylor-Kale, Managing Partnerat Beck and Thomas, P.C John Thomas, and Congressman Tim Murphy were also in attendance to speak with the students as part of an effort to change people’s perceptions about today’s manufacturing environment and draw attention to the outstanding opportunities that a career in manufacturing can provide.  Activities included presentations from a number of DMI departments, tours and hands on experiences at our facility, and one on one time with DMI employees.

Manufacturing Day is an annual national event executed at the local level supported by thousands of manufacturers as they host students, teachers, parents, job seekers and other local community members at open houses, plant tours and presentations designed to showcase modern manufacturing technology and careers.

“There is an increasing demand for highly skilled professionals in the manufacturing sector who can design, program and operate technology,” said Raymond Yeager, President and CEO with DMI Companies. “The average age of a manufacturing employee is 56, and between now and 2020 there will be an unprecedented shortage of skilled workers who will need to be replaced.”

Manufacturing Day is co-produced by the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association, International (FMA), the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), the Manufacturing Institute (MI), and the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s (NIST) Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP). Partners include Edge Factor and the Science Channel and guest producer Industrial Strength Marketing.

Photos from our Manufacturing Day event can be found on our Facebook Page.

 

More information on Manufacturing Day is available at www.mfgday.com.

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A Closer Look at DMI Manufacturing Day

Outdated stereotypes and misconceptions have kept many students from pursuing rewarding careers in this growing industry. Manufacturing Day is a national event that is typically celebrated the first Friday of October, but any day can be Manufacturing Day!

To get some firsthand knowledge of both Manufacturing Day and the industry itself, STEM Jobs spoke with Katie Hager, Workforce Development Manager at DMI Companies.

STEM Jobs: Why is an event like Manufacturing Day important?

Katie: American manufacturing is facing a serious skills shortage due to many factors. Worldwide demand for manufactured goods has increased. Many US manufacturing operations have moved back to the United States and companies from other countries have increased manufacturing operations in the United States. This has created an increased demand for manufacturing workers. In addition, continuous advances in manufacturing technology, automation and Lean manufacturing have changed the types of things these employees do every day and, therefore, changed the skills required to be successful in a manufacturing career. Many manufacturing jobs involve heavy use of technology, software, and skilled trades. People still tend to think of manufacturing as the boring, dirty and dangerous jobs of many years ago. They also think it does not provide the wages and benefits that can support a good lifestyle. This causes many students and parents to dismiss the idea of a career in manufacturing. Lastly, the retirement of the Baby Boomer generation is progressively depleting the existing workforce. Due to all of these factors, there are expected to be about 2 million manufacturing jobs that will go unfilled in the next 10 years if we cannot show parents, students and teachers that modern manufacturing is a wonderful career opportunity.

In reality, the average salary in manufacturing is 20% higher than the overall average salary. The US produces almost 20% of all global manufactured products, which makes it the world’s largest manufacturing economy and a very stable career choice. The technology and innovation behind modern manufacturing makes it an extremely exciting field with much more diverse career offerings than in the past. Many high-demand manufacturing jobs do not require a four-year degree. This means that students can avoid the monstrous student loan debt of college and still get a good-paying job with a future where they are doing something they enjoy.

Manufacturing Day gives us the opportunity to showcase the realities of modern manufacturing. Students, parents, and teachers get to see for themselves the technological, environmental, and lifestyle advances that have been made in our industry in the past few decades. They also get to see firsthand the variety of career opportunities available and what their future could hold if they choose a career in manufacturing.

SJ: What are the goals of Manufacturing Day from your perspective?

Katie: The goal of Manufacturing Day is to show students, parents, teachers, counselors, and administrators that modern manufacturing careers have changed drastically from the old days and are appealing to many different types of people. There are good-paying career opportunities for every STEM Type.

Obviously, each area of interest would entail a different career path. Exposing students to the variety of manufacturing career options while they are still in school gives them an edge. They are still in the position to make career and educational choices that will put them on the best path to the career they choose. Exposing teachers, counselors and administrators to these career options helps them understand the skills needed to be successful in the various manufacturing career options so they can incorporate them, or continue to focus on them, in their curriculum. This also helps them advise students on career paths that might be most fulfilling for them based on their own personal interests and aptitudes.

DMI’s Manufacturing Day will give students the opportunity to interact primarily with our production, engineering, maintenance and management teams but we will also include other potential careers such as accounting, information technology, sales, customer service, procurement and more. They will get to tour the plant, see the latest in manufacturing technology and even use our state-of-the-art software to produce an item on our laser cutter. They will get to ask our employees what it is like to work at DMI, how did they get there and any other questions they want to know about manufacturing. At the end of the day, we hope everyone leaves with a clear understanding of how great a career in manufacturing can be. Down the road, we hope these students end up becoming the future explorers, investigators, makers, integrators, designers, producers, solvers, and advisors of DMI Companies.

SJ:How can students get involved in Manufacturing Day?

Katie: There are lots of ways to get involved!
• Go to www.mfgday.com
• Register for and attend an event.
• Talk to your parents, teachers or counselors about finding or organizing an event
• When you go to an event, ask lots of questions, get information on work experience and training opportunities, share your experience with your parents, teachers, and friends.

SJ: What are some common misconceptions about manufacturing? What are the realities?

Katie:
• Manufacturing is no longer the dirty, dangerous, unstable and boring work that people recall from the past
• Technology and employers desire to create a better workplace experience has resulted in much cleaner and safer environments
• Global expansion, reshoring, and economic improvements have secured manufacturing’s future. In fact, manufacturing workers have the highest job tenure in the private sector.
• The use of automation, 3-D printers, laser cutters, CNC machines, robotics, a multitude of different types of software, and many more advancements have made manufacturing careers exciting and revolutionary
• The annual average salary of manufacturing workers is more than $77,000
• 90% of manufacturing workers have medical benefits

SJ: What do you see as the future of manufacturing?

Katie: The future of manufacturing is limitless on many fronts. Our research and development teams, like most, are continuously designing new and improved products and manufacturing processes to enhance people’s quality of life and reduce our impact on the environment. This constant stream of new technology enables us to do more and be better. It also creates the need for continuous learning and skills enhancement. The focus moving forward is on skills-based training with many avenues to achieving your dream job and multiple on and off ramps at various points along the way. Students can graduate from many high schools now with the skills needed to earn a very healthy wage. They can add to their skills, while earning money, at companies like DMI or by attending community college or trade school which only increases their potential. The more they learn, the more they contribute to the advancements in the industry which makes it a sustainable cycle of success.

It’s time to rethink everything you thought you knew about manufacturing. Take a look at what trade schools have to offer.

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Ductmate & Gen7 Featured in STEM Jobs

STEM students can look to the HVAC industry for careers in sustainable construction, thus creating eco-friendly change.

Dorothy Crouch of STEM Jobs explores the Gen7 project at River Vine Vinyeards, in which Ductmate products contribute to the overall sustainability of the home. STEM professionals, such as architects and urban planners, are needed for the future of sustainable building as seen with River Vine.

Please click here for the full article.

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Vote Now for Your Favorite Student Video

DMI Companies is a proud sponsor of the Annual Manufacturing Reception and Student Video Contest being held by Catalyst.

DMI Companies is a proud sponsor of the Annual Manufacturing Reception and Student Video Contest being held by Catalyst. Voting is open and more than 35,000 votes have been cast for their favorite manufacturing video. Please head over to Dream It Do It PA to vote now!  This is the first year of the student video contest in southwestern Pennsylvania with 10 schools and 10 companies participating in the program. The online voting for the People’s Choice award will run from Feb. 8-12, 2016. The program’s award ceremony will be on Feb. 18, 2016 at the Heinz Field Club East Lounge.

Dream It. Do It. PA is a partnership led by the Manufacturers Resource Center (MRC) in Allentown, Pa. Its mission is to change the way that people think about manufacturing and raise awareness of highly-technical advanced manufacturing careers. Below are some of our Regional Contacts.

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Self-Sealing Ducts Teaches Lesson on Fast Installation

“Before we committed to the product we had representatives from GreenSeam Industries demonstrate that the pipe would perform as promised,” said Meacham. “After the testing we were convinced this product was for us.

Middle Tennessee has seen its population surge over the past decade. Rutherford and surrounding counties are experiencing one of the highest growth rates in the country. Although the effected counties have long range strategies for expansion of their schools, these plans were recently updated to match the surging population. The increase has resulted in the region constructing at least one and as many as three schools every year for the past ten years.

The city of Nolensville has been dealing with this influx of people as well, and many of their classrooms are facing overcrowding. The community had been planning to build a new high school and elementary facility since 2013. The new Nolensville high school will allow the school district to reduce class size and address the district’s concerns regarding overcrowding when it is completed in the 2015/2016 time period.

The sheet metal sub-contractor for the Nolensville high school was Roscoe Brown, Inc. With 75 years of experience, Roscoe Brown, Inc. services the middle Tennessee market through a network of facilities located in Nashville, Murfreesboro and Tullahoma. The company serves the commercial and residential markets, and has a full sheet metal shop along with its other service offerings.

Mike Meacham heads their sheet metal department, and has over 30 years of experience working in the industry, 17 alone with Roscoe Brown. He said Central Tennessee is booming and is the fastest growing areas in the country.

“By all accounts and reports in newspapers like the Wall Street Journal, this area is playing catchup with infrastructures like schools,” said Meacham. “For the last ten years we have been building new schools at a rate of one to three per year.”

During this rush to get the new schools on line, Roscoe Brown investigated ways to speed production and installation while keeping costs under control. They were introduced to GreenSeam+ (Plus) new self-sealing snap-lock pipe and were impressed by its simplicity. GreenSeam+ factory sealed ducting is manufactured by GreenSeam Industries, a sister company of Ductmate Industries, a leading producer of duct and HVAC related products. GreenSeam Industries engineered a completely factory sealed pipe and fittings duct system for the low pressure side of HVAC systems. 

“Before we committed to the product we had representatives from GreenSeam Industries demonstrate that the pipe would perform as promised,” said Meacham. “After the testing we were convinced this product was for us.

Meacham said the high school is a 260,000 square foot building on two levels.  Roscoe Brown fabricated all of the trunk duct for the project and used GreenSeam+ for the run outs to diffusers.

GreenSeam+ eliminates both material and labor costs associated with external sealing and taping of the ducting. The time and material savings from using GreenSeam+ more than make up for the slight cost premium. Proper sealing of the duct system is a critical step in almost every installation. Insufficient or faulty sealant application will lead to leakage problems, which can place additional strain on the HVAC system, while increasing fuel usage.

Conklin Metal Industries has served the Southeast since it was founded in 1874 with sheet metal and HVAC products, and is a local distributor of GreenSeam Industries ducting products. Ryan Wigginton is the territory manager working with Roscoe Brown and other sheet metal contractors. Wigginton said GreenSeam Industries engineered the GreenSeam+ low pressure duct system to perform to the highest standards.

“A button lock is used verses a reeves lock because it is less likely to separate over time or through rough handling,” said Wigginton. “The snap lock pipe is supplied with a pre-installed EPDM gasket in the longitudinal seam and transverse joint, requiring no additional sealing once snapped together. 

Wigginton said all factory joints have the exact amount of sealant necessary to provide the system with a positive seal preventing wasteful over sealing or undersealing that can lead to leakage. The VOC-free gasket has a shelf life of 20 years minimum, a melt point of 300° F and meets the requirements of ASTM E84-05. GreenSeam+ is available in diameters 4" - 14" and in lengths 24" and 60".  GreenSeam Industries also provides a complete line of factory-sealed conicals, high efficiency take-offs, reducers, collars and fittings.

To date Meacham said they installed over 2,000 feet each of 8” and 10” GreenSeam+ pipe and plan to stay with it. Besides installing fast and saving time, they have had no reworking due to product failure. Meacham noted the faster installation times are beneficial in keeping up with tight schedules. Jobs like the Nolensville high school had been delayed by poor winter weather and the faster installation helps us make up for lost time.

Many contractors are initially apprehensive to install a product not specified by engineers because of possible repercussions if the product does not perform as claimed. GreenSeam+ ducting has captured the interest of contractors and engineers alike and is fast becoming the product of choice for low pressure duct applications!

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AHR Expo 2016

http://www.ahrexpo.com/

We will once again be exhibiting at the AHR Expo in Orlando, FL January 25-27. Be sure to stop by and see us at booth #4210!

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Make A Wish Donation



Today members of the DMI Companies Children’s Charity Committee (Ray Yeager, Donna Pauley, and Carol Singer) announced the fulfillment of a young boy’s wish to visit Virginia Beach.

This marks the 12th year in a row that DMI Companies has donated to the Make A Wish Foundation and to date has donated $50,000 to the organization.

The employees at DMI’s four manufacturing facilities located around the USA and corporate HQ located in Charleroi PA, are happy to donate money on a regular basis for casual Fridays, 50/50 Raffles, Holiday Contests, and other various events throughout the year.

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Ductmate Partners with AMS to Build New Gen7 Concept House

http://amsbuildingthefuture.com/

Designed to achieve LEED Platinum certification, River Vine Vineyards will be one of the most advanced, high-end prefabricated residences ever constructed.

Ductmate Industries, has teamed with American Modular Systems (AMS) to build a Gen7 Concept House on a 50-acre working vineyard in Lodi Wine Country. Designed to achieve LEED Platinum certification, River Vine Vineyards will be one of most advanced, high-end prefabricated residences ever constructed—a state-of-the art smart home that will take sustainable prefabricated design and construction to the next level. The Zero Net Energy building will integrate renewable energy systems, environmentally-friendly materials and cutting-edge products in a home that is livable, functional and energy-independent, using both solar and geothermal technologies to produce as much energy as it consumes over the course of a year.

“Ductmate Industries will be instrumental in making River Vine the inspirational building we know it can be,” said Tony Sarich, owner of River Vine and co-founder of AMS and Gen7 Schools. “Quality products like Ductmate’s are essential to our energy-saving strategies, because they’re sustainably made, highly efficient and hold up to daily use over the building’s long lifecycle.”

According to Sarich, River Vine will showcase a 21st Century living environment, combining modern design elements, advanced technology and modular building science within a sustainable footprint that meets multifunctional needs. The home will be fully automated, with all systems, appliances and electrical components networked for centralized control from a single touchpoint—a concept that can be replicated in future Gen7 classrooms and other buildings.

Construction of River Vine has started at the AMS factory in Manteca and is expected to be completed next summer.

For more information, visit the River Vine website at http://amsbuildingthefuture.com/

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Lindab Inc. is now Linx Industries

http://li-hvac.com/

Lindab Inc. is proud to announce they have changed their name to Linx Industries.

Visit the website for more information on your source for Lindab products in North America.

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