Meet 4 Nominees for Kane County Manufacturing Champion of the Year
- Editor’s Note: At 10:30 a.m. Friday, Sept. 11, the Kane County Board Jobs Committee will hold a special meeting at the Kane County Government Center to honor 11 companies nominated as 2015 Kane County Manufacturing Champion of the Year. The winning entry will go on to represent Kane County in the 2015 Manufacturing Champion Awards on Oct. 7, hosted by the Alliance for Illinois Manufacturing.
America has been undergoing what a lot of people are calling a manufacturing renaissance in recent years, and for those of us who aren’t active in the manufacturing industry, it might come as a bit of a surprise that the same renaissance is happening right here in Illinois and in Kane County.
In an effort to support and promote local manufacturing businesses, the Kane County Board Jobs Committee in partnership with the county’s Development and Community Services Department has identified 11 companies with a reputation for leadership, a keen focus on technology and innovation and a demonstrated commitment to “pay it forward” to the local community.
Their stories are compelling, and their contribution to Kane County’s job market, economic health and tax base are worthy of recognition.
In alphabetical order, here are the first four 2015 nominees:
AmeriChem Systems, Inc.
Chemical Industry Equipment
Address: 1740 Molitor Road, Aurora
AmeriChem Systems, Inc. is a 24-year-old manufacturing company located in Aurora. ASI designs and builds custom-engineered modular equipment that is sold to large, multinational corporations and installed all over the world. ASI’s corrosion-resistant fluid handling equipment can be found at refineries, power plants and other large industrial facilities.
ASI is a longtime sponsor of the Wasco Diamonds, a non-profit girls fast pitch softball program, founded by Joe Garbarski in 1995. Joe, president of ASI, runs the program’s charity golf outing, which is the Diamonds’ largest fundraiser of the year and includes the participation of customers, suppliers and employees. The company also provides donations to the Aurora Interfaith Food Pantry and is a member of the Aurora Regional Chamber of Commerce.
Tool Design and Development
Address: 544 N. Highland Ave., Aurora
With more than 100 years of tool design and development experience, ASK Products remains the nimble and efficient option for companies facing new and evolving challenges. Over the decades, ASK Products has developed a highly effective master die concept that allows the company to economically produce multiple products from common gauge and stud-hole master dies, keeping customer costs in line and ensuring their ability to meet all demands.
ASK Products of Aurora has been active in addressing manufacturing issues, including training, technology and support of the supply chain. ASK Products has been focusing on what it calls its “Knowledge Worker” Program, training and development of advanced manufacturing skills. ASK has relied upon Waubonsee Community College, the Kane County Workforce Investment Board, and the Alliance for Manufacturing to develop profiling of advanced manufacturing skills and to change its culture in the direction of team-based problem solving and multi-functional training.
ASK has increased the percentage of its output which is based in advanced manufacturing skills, including robotics, cad-cam, Computer Numerical Control milling, Electrical Discharge Machining and advanced press knowledge.
CAST Aluminum Solutions
Address: 1310 Kingsland Drive, Batavia
Cast Aluminum Solutions (sometimes called CAS) is a successful company with customers worldwide.
CAS has 70 employees in Batavia, the majority of which are Kane County residents. In late 2010, the plant was fully purchased by a private organization. Re-branded as “Cast Aluminum Solutions” they now export their products worldwide. Their products are regularly shipped to Europe, Asia and Australia.
This is in addition to a thriving business serving customers and processors across the United States and Canada.
CAS makes industrial components that go into larger machines or fit into complex processes. The core material for their products is almost always aluminum, and most of our components are used in some type of “heating application.”
Their products are used by:
- Space exploration and jet propulsion agencies
- Major pharmaceutical manufacturers
- Top-name food and restaurant brands
- Oil and gas exploration and refinery operators
- Semiconductor and micro-chip manufacturers
Custom Aluminum Products
- Aluminum Extrusion Industry
- Address: 414 West Division St., South Elgin
Custom Aluminum Products is a family owned and operated business that is now recognized as a leader in the aluminum extrusion industry. Founded in 1960, the early years were spent manufacturing storm windows and doors in a 25-by-100-foot space. The past 50 years have seen tremendous success and growth, and Custom Aluminum now has more than 750,000 square feet of manufacturing space between its facilities in South Elgin and Genoa, IL.
With a strong commitment to excellence in customer service and an enthusiastic energy for education, quality and continuous improvement, the company’s core values of its legacy are instilled through the company’s employees and their work ethic. Throughout the past half century, Custom Aluminum Products has grown from a small local window and door manufacturer to a technically advanced aluminum extruder specializing in custom extrusions, fabrication, welding, bending, painting, anodizing, assembly, packing and inventory warehousing all done on site.
Custom Aluminum firmly believes that investment in its employees is the key to success. Offering on-site educational classes from entry level to advanced, Custom Aluminum’s education program along with its partnership with a local college has won a statewide award and become an education model followed by other companies.