Apr 20, 2023
Ingevity celebrates 20 years of growth
INGEVITY IN THE NEWS
April 18, 2023
Ingevity hosted a dinner Thursday, April 13 to celebrate 20 years in their Waynesboro location.
CEO John Fortson said the plant in Waynesboro is a “very different site” compared to the company’s other locations. Waynesboro’s sense of community and family make it unique. “The impact that you guys have had in this facility, I would argue is more important than any other site in the company,” he said to a room that filled with applause.
Plant Manager Keith Dutterer pointed out that more than 120 million honeycomb parts have been produced in the Bird Dog Capital, generating over $1 billion worth of revenue for Ingevity. He credited the employees for the location’s success.
“It’s the people and our positive attitude and culture,” he said. “We are all working together as a team to keep each other safe and working as a team to continue to improve and expand our operations. We love being part of this small community and we love being able to invest in this community through our IngeviCares program. We are always looking to hire local and develop talent locally, so partnerships with the high school and Augusta Tech are very important to us.”
Through the IngeviCares program, Ingevity awarded a total of $60,000 to high school seniors in the United States in 2022. The program awards $2,000 scholarships to exceptional applicants in the communities where they operate.
As part of the celebration, Strategic Initiatives Manager Jason Matocha guided a tour of the plant, sharing a history of its growth. He began with a simplified summary of the plant’s process and a brief explanation of the purpose of its products. “If you remember driving the cars in the 1970s, then you remember filling up and smelling gas all the time,” he said. “You don’t anymore and you’re welcome.”
Twenty years ago, inspectors used to look at the finished honeycomb parts 12 hours per day, five days-per-week. However, now computerized cameras take on the grueling task. People used to manually box the parts, but now it is left up to automation. The packaging line is a new addition to the facility as well, eliminating cross contamination.
Back in the day the plant produced 70,000-100,000 honeycombs a month. “We can do that in a day now,” Motocha said and pointed out that advanced machinery allows the company to package that enormous number of parts during one shift. Ingevity recently upgraded their accounting and shipping systems. The maintenance section of the plant, once filled with pigeons living in the rafters, has grown to include an upstairs supervisor space, along with a storeroom and a shop.
“When we first started up the plant, we were a Monday through Friday, 40-hour-perweek facility,” he said of the operation that now runs 24/7.
Employees honored for 20 or more years with Ingevity included Jason Matocha, Lakeisha Mosley, Velvet Dishmond, Debby Dixon, Angela Jackson, Curtis Washington, Nico Wright, Contessa Sampson and Carlos Lewis.
The True Citizen