Several hundred people, including employees, retirees, their family members and local community leaders, recently celebrated the 40th anniversary of the DuPont Teijin Films (DTF) plant in Hopewell, Va. The celebration was combined with a family day event.
“This was an outstanding event for our plant,” said Joe Bourne, plant manager. “We’ve always operated as a family here and this turnout of employees, retirees and the many children and grandchildren of employees being here is a clear reflection of that.”
Joe attributed the plant’s success and ability to reach the 40-year milestone to employees’ determination and commitment.
“This starts with the core values that define us, and I am proud to recognize you all for your commitment to safety excellence,” he said. “As of today, we have gone over 660 days since our last recordable injury.”
Joe said another factor in the site’s successful operations is its ability to adapt to changing markets. For example, he said the site’s film and polymer products used to go into eight-track and cassette tapes, VCR video tapes, overhead transparencies, floppy disks and Polaroid film. Now, Hopewell products go into flat-panel displays, touch screens for cell phones, photovoltaic cells and medical devices.
Ruth Williams and Wayne Hewitt were two of the long-term employees recognized at the event. Both have worked at the plant for 40 years. Wayne, manufacturing director for polymer operations, was even involved in hiring people when the plant opened. Ruth, a senior finance clerk, said she never thought she’d be working at the plant for so long.
“This has been a good place to work. It’s very family-oriented and the company actually cares about you,” she said.
Becky McDonough, executive vice president of the Hopewell/Prince George’s County Chamber of Commerce, delivered remarks during the program and applauded DuPont for its long history in the community. She noted that the 40th anniversary of the Hopewell operations occurred during the 100th year anniversary of when DuPont built its first gunpowder plant in the city of Hopewell, helping transform the city into a booming company town.