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RockTenn celebrates 150 years in Coshocton

| November 18, 2013

COSHOCTON – Several hundred people attended the community open house held Saturday afternoon, Nov. 16 at the RockTenn mill in Coshocton. Company officials greeted retirees, employee’s families and guests as they enjoyed refreshments, a video and memorabilia about the company.

Guests then boarded waiting buses and had the opportunity to win prizes by answering trivia questions. With the mill beginning operation in 1863, the same year that President Abraham Lincoln gave his Gettysburg Address; a lot of history has passed through the mill. Donning hard hats, earplugs and safety glasses, guests then took a tour of one of the mill’s paper machines that was in operation.

State Representative Bill Hayes presented plant manager Steve Devlin with a proclamation and Tim Ross, representing Governor Kasich’s office, also presented a proclamation to Devlin and the company honoring 150 years.

Rep. Hayes said, “It looks like the community is jumping all over this, they’re very interested in it, the memorabilia in the pavilion, it’s just a great turnout of folks. I’m glad that I could attend and I would like to congratulate RockTenn on 150 years and (laughing) I hope I’m around to celebrate the next 150 years. I’m glad to be able to serve this community.”

Tim Ross, representing the Governor’s office, said, “We wanted to recognize the commitment to the community and 150 years is certainly very rare throughout the state to still be in business. The proclamation was honoring that and the message is that we’re happy they’re doing business in Ohio and happy they’re doing business in Coshocton and we want to wish them another happy 150 years.”

Plant Manager Steve Devlin said, “This is a very nice turnout and we want to thank the community for supporting this event.” Devlin said that for a company to operate for 150 years, “You need a good cost structure so you can be competitive in the marketplace and a good workforce and we have both here. We are very blessed with it.”

The Coshocton mill has a reputation in RockTenn for producing quality products, having a top notch work force and Devlin said the factors involved are, “Safety and quality is number one. Those two, you have to do those to satisfy the customer and keep the employees safe. From there you can build a good organization.”

“The Coshocton mill employs just over 200 employees”, Devlin said. “As far as the local economy it’s more than just the payroll from those 200 people, it’s also all the wood suppliers, energy and more. There are a lot of area businesses that we purchase from so we put a lot of money back into the economy.”

“Building the relationships in the community and all the people that work here live here so environmentally speaking, it’s important to all the personnel and the employees that we have a good relationship because we know we have a lot of trucks passing through the area. You’re always going to be intrusive with a big manufacturing business in a community so we appreciate the support we get from the community so we do everything we can to be as non-intrusive as possible.”

“We just really appreciate the people coming out, we saw a lot off families here, the employees took a lot of pride, they really pulled this thing together and took care of their areas and got the mill ready for the community to come in and we’re happy that people came out and shared the day with us.”

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About the Author ()

I live with my beautiful wife Nancy on a small farm just outside Coshocton. We have been married for thirty two years and have two grown children, Jessica and Jacob. Jessica is married to Aaron Mencer and they are employed with Coshocton City Schools. Jacob is a sophomore at Kent State University. I graduated from River View High School, have a Bachelor’s Degree from North Carolina Wesleyan University and am actively involved with the Roscoe United Methodist Church, serve on several local committees and am a member of the Coshocton Kiwanis Club, having served as Past-President. I love reading, especially military thrillers, the Civil War and history in general. My goal is to write a novel. My wife and I are also AdvoCare distributors and encourage anyone wanting to lose weight, gain energy and better health to explore AdvoCare at our website; www.fortunes4advocare.com. I love the media field, innovative technology and have worked in newspapers for over 30 years – in fact, my first job was delivering newspapers. The Beacon is a dream made possible by the support of this community and a great team. I hope to continue serving Coshocton County for many years.

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