Manufacturers’ association introduces new award

Ioannis Pashakis//May 2, 2019

Manufacturers’ association introduces new award

Ioannis Pashakis//May 2, 2019

Michael Hady, executive director of the Powdermill Foundation, center, receives the Manufacturers’ Association’s
Manufacturing Trailblazer Award on behalf of the J. Louis Appell Jr.
Family. Shown at left are Travis Gentzler, association board president, and at right, Tom Palisin, the association’s executive director. (Photo: Submitted)

A York County businessman and philanthropist was posthumously honored with the first Manufacturing Trailblazer award given by the Manufacturers’ Association.

Louis Appell Jr., president of former Susquehanna Pfaltzgraff Co. and founder of York’s Powder Mill Foundation, was recognized by the Manchester Township, York County-based association for the continuing effect his former company and philanthropy has had on the region.

The award was given during the association’s annual manufacturer’s awards event on April 25. The association has members throughout southcentral Pennsylvania and northcentral Maryland. The award was added as a way to look back at individuals in the industry who had the biggest impact on the region.

“Each year moving forward, we can recognize another person who serves as a great example of personal fortitude and innovation,” said Todd Willman, marketing and membership manager of the association.

Before Appell liquidated Pfaltzgraff in 2005, the companies in total made annual revenues estimated between $250 million and $300 million a year. Appell’s Powder Mill Foundation, which oversees Appell’s trust, awarded almost $2 million in grants in 2017 throughout York County.

“You don’t go far in York County without hearing Appell’s name mentioned or being touched by his philanthropic efforts,” Willman said. “More importantly for us, Pfaltzgraff was one single name that people knew throughout the world.”

During the association’s award ceremony, Turkey Hill Dairy in Manor Township, Lancaster County was honored as manufacturer of the year for reaching its goal of powering its production with 100 percent renewable energy. The association said the company has also led the manufacturing industry as early adopters of new food-safety programs and investing heavily in its workforce through employee training and leadership development.

Hellam Township, York County-based New Standard Corp., a maker of vehicle parts, was honored for its investments in York County. In the past year, the company donated to organizations such as the United Way and Junior Achievement and sponsored a number of local programs and fundraisers, according to the association.

MacuLogix Inc., of Swatara Township, Dauphin County, was recognized as a manufacturing innovator. MacuLogix creates medical equipment for the treatment of age-related macular degeneration. The company was given the honor for its commitment to innovation, which the association said was apparent from the company’s $3 million investment in research and development in 2018 and a $38.7 million investment in infrastructure.

The York County Alliance for Learning was also honored as association partner of the year for its work to promote National Manufacturing day and its partnership on manufacturing job fairs and student career days. The West Manchester Township, York County nonprofit works with businesses and schools on career education for county students.