Almost a quarter century ago, Major Robert ‘Bob’ Baugh retired from his position as President of Precise Hard Chrome, A Dover Company, and became Executive Director of the Texas Association of Metal Finishers. While running Precise Hard Chrome, Bob was an active member of the Association, served on the Board of Directors, and eventually served as TAMF President. He was an absolute perfect fit as Executive Director for our small group and he transitioned to executive director quickly and smoothly.
A smooth transition into becoming executive director went unnoticed by most because that is how Bob was trained. Efficient and effective leadership honed by a 23-year career as an Air Force and Army aviator. Bob retired at the rank of Major, which speaks to his abilities but he also retired with proficiency in everything Army Aviation had in it’s inventory. He flew everything from the famous UH1-Huey to his personal favorite, the OV-1 Mohawk, a twin turbine, armed observation bird.
Bob served his country proudly in Viet Nam and earned a degree in Aeronautical Science as well as his MBA along the way. After his military service, Bob entered the industry and spent 15 years in Sales and Management positions for Precise Hard Chrome, a significant hard chrome provider in Waco, Texas. Precise Hard Chrome manufactured high quality hydraulic cylinders used in lift components of equipment and commercial construction. He spent his last 5 years with Precise Hard Chrome as their President and of course joined the TAMF almost 25 years ago after retiring once again!
His last day as TAMF Executive Director will be December 31, 2017. It is with great sadness we say good by to Bob, but in hopes of seeing him at least once a year on the golf course, we have extended him ED Emeritus status and have asked he and his lovely wife Gay, join us at our Summer Conventions or any regular meeting he would like. Bob Baugh is such a good man, such a good friend, and we will miss him dearly.
Written by J. Kelly Mowry, TAMF President
Jeff Brassard is currently the General Manager of Palm Commodities International, LLC., a wholly owned subsidiary of Umicore North America. Jeff has extensive experience in the surface finishing industry gained over 40-years working within the industry on a global scale, both as an electroplater and a supplier. He worked for a major proprietary chemical supplier for 23 years before joining Palm Commodities in 1997. Prior to this, he worked for a job shop in New England that offered a wide variety of plating and surface finishes, during which time Jeff served as their technical manager for a number of years. Jeff believes the industry is strengthened through education and communication and supports the industry by currently sitting on the NASF national board.
James Sullivan is Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for the Schumacher Companies in Houston, TX which consist of: The Schumacher Company, Dixie Electro Plating and Spraymetal Inc., all serving the Oil & Gas industry. With 42 years of plating/metal finishing and management experience, James is responsible for all of the Schumacher Companies activities.
James started his finishing career in Fort Worth, TX in 1975 working with plating/finishing companies mostly serving the Aerospace industry. In 1994 James relocated to Chicago, IL. Where he ran several plating job shops as General Manager working with industries such as: Aerospace, Injection Mold & Tool and the Optics Industry.
James has held positions such as: Masker, Plater, Anodizer, Lead Plater, Plating Supervisor, Production Manager, Lab Manager, Outside Sales, Plant Manager and General Manager all with job shops within the finishing industry. James has hands-on experience with many types of plating and anodizing processes including wet spray Mil-spec priming. Further, James has a thorough knowledge of waste treatment and compliance issues facing our finishing industry.
As VP/COO of the Schumacher Companies which is one of the larger Hard Chrome job shops in the country, James is constantly involved with regulatory and compliance challenges facing the finishing industry. For the last many years, James has been very active attending most of the NASF events such as: The Washington Forum, SUR/FIN and the Leadership Conference.
With 42 years of job shop experience, James has a well-rounded knowledge of the constant challenges facing platers/finishers and what is needed to meet these challenges.
James also served in the United States Marine Corps Reserve for 6 years and is a current Board member with the National Association For Surface Finishing since 2016 and also a Board member with his local chapter the Texas Association Of Metal Finishers now for several years. James has been married for 36 years and has 2 children and 5 grandchildren. In his off time James enjoys spending time with family.
Rebecca Bennett (a.k.a. Becky) started at Precision Plating in April of 1973, in the Chemical Laboratory while attending college at night to get a degree in Business Administration. When she started, the EPA and OSHA had only been in existence for about 2 years and in a few short years of employment, Becky worked her way into the Environmental and Safety areas. She created all the regulatory procedures and training programs currently in use at Precision Plating and conducts the majority of the Safety Related Training Programs for all 3 shifts.
Precision Plating has always been a family owned business and was started by Robert Zacharias in 1904. The company started out electroplating picture frames in gold and silver, switching to electroplating military parts as America entered into World War II in 1941. The company was bought by Jim Belmonti in 1989; Jim’s 3 children took over the operation in 2008. Precision Plating is primarily a precious metal electroplater specializing in reel to reel operations, even though one third of the business contains traditional rack and barrel operations. In the last 15 years, Precision Plating has also secured many jobs requiring tri-metal (Cu, Sn, Zn) electroplating.
Becky was asked to join the Chicago Metal Finishers Institute (CMFI) in 2002 and was nominated by her peers to represent the CMFI on the National Association of Metal Finishers (NAMF) in 2005. Becky had the honor to serve as President of the CMFI in 2011 and worked on the committee that helped to structure the joining of the CMFI with the Chicago AESF. The two groups have since changed their names to the Chicago Midwest Chapter of NASF. While on the national NASF Board, Becky has had the opportunity to work on the Job Shop Committee and the GAC.
Becky has worked with the Chicago Surface Finishing Foundation (CSFF) golf committee for the past 3 years; with the money earned from the golf outing, the CSFF has been able to provide complimentary industry training courses for Chicago Area Members. She was part of the committee that coordinated the first, very successful Sustainability Summit for the Chicago Area in 2016 and is again part of the committee preparing for 2nd Annual Sustainability Summit to be held in Lake Geneva, WI on October 12th – 13th.
Becky is the oldest of five siblings and has two daughters and three grandsons. Becky’s hobbies are photography and scrapbooking and loves to work in her yard as she finds it is therapeutic after a long day in the plating facility.
Christopher is the Vice President of Operations for New Method Plating Company, Inc. located in Worcester, Massachusetts. Chris is a third-generation metal finisher at New Method Plating, which was started in 1931 by his grandfather, Ralph Capalbo, Sr. and is currently owned by his father Ralph Capalbo, Jr. Chris has worked every job at their NADCAP accredited metal finishing job shop during his 20-year career, servicing various military, aerospace, municipal, locking device, and hardware industries.
Chris has been an active member of the New England Chapter of the National Association of Metal Finisher for most of his career. He has served as President, Vice President, Treasurer, Clerk, and is still on the Board of Directors as the National Director to the NASF. For the past 8 years, Chris has served as the Administrative Co-Director for the New England Surface Finishing Regional; the is the largest annual metal finishing trade conference in all of New England. He has worked as an ambassador to the metal finishing industry, making multiple presentations for the Toxic Use Reduction Institute in striving to work with and help them understand the willingness of our industry to achieve responsible sustainability.
Chris holds his Massachusetts Wastewater Operators license, as well as completing his Toxic Use Reduction Planner Certification. Chris holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of Hartford.
Born and raised in New England, Brian Kane moved to Chicago in 1998 and in 2000, began his career at S&C Electric Company as a Safety & Environmental Engineer. S&C is a leading manufacturer of high voltage switchgear located in northeast Chicago, operating a wide variety of manufacturing processes, including a captive plating operation. Brian moved into S&C’s finishing operations as a process engineer, overseeing the plating, galvanizing and wastewater treatment operations. It was here that he first became an active member of the local Chicago Chapter after taking a local offering of the CEF course. Brian credits the camaraderie, information-sharing and technical presentations that kept him coming back. After holding several positions on the Board of Directors, Brian played an active role in the merger of the two surface finishing bodies in Chicago, forming both the Chicago Midwest Chapter of the NASF and the Chicago Surface Finishing Foundation where he now serves on both Boards. Brian is constantly amazed and inspired by the dedicated leadership and volunteer work done by the local and national chapter and Board members he has had the opportunity to work with. He enjoys active participation in the various chapter/NASF outings and social gatherings, including holiday parties, the science fair, golf outings, education summits and Washington Forum.
Married for 20 years with two beautiful kids (ages 11 and 13), Brian received a BS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Vermont and an MS in Environmental Engineering from Tufts University. Brian held positions as a US Navy Nuclear Reactor Plant Test Engineer and then as a Product EHS Engineer for a semiconductor fabrication equipment OEM prior to moving to Chicago. Brian recently returned to S&C’s Safety & Environmental Affairs group as senior manager, driving continuous improvement of the safety and sustainability efforts. He sees now more than ever the critical role that an active and engaged trade organization membership can bring to the health and welfare of individual companies and the industry as a whole.
In 2016, Brian received the Award of Merit from NASF/AESF and the Charlie Geldzhaler Award from the Chicago Chapter. Brian was also elected President of the AESF Foundation’s Board of Trustees in June of that year. Brian thanks his fellow chapter and board member’s generosity, support and mentorship for his longevity and certainly any accolades. Brian’s vision for the AESF Foundation includes expanded course offerings and accessibility, improved technical and educational resources, continued excellence in research and scholarship activities, and expanded chapter outreach.
P: (202) 457-8404