This year's Plastics Hall of Fame awards dinner, on June 19 during NPE, should draw about 700 attendees to the Chicago Hilton and Towers — the biggest crowd in recent memory.
Organizers have sold about 600 advance tickets already. Tickets, priced at $110 each or $1,000 for a table of 10 people, can be purchased at NPE at the main registration area in the Grand Concourse between the McCormick Place North and South buildings.
Nine industry standouts will be inducted into the Plastics Hall of Fame, including its first woman member, Kevlar inventor Stephanie L. Kwolek. Extrusion pioneer Bruce H. Maddock, who died last November shortly after being picked for the Hall of Fame, will be inducted posthumously.
The Plastics Hall of Fame is housed in Leominster, Mass., at the National Plastics Center and Museum.
``Clearly the Hall of Fame banquet has become an industry event,'' said Jerome Heckman, president of the Plastics Academy, which administrates the hall.
Heckman thinks the June 19 dinner will be an evening to remember.
``It will mark the 25th anniversary of the Hall of Fame, it will include the first induction of a woman and it will take place before an audience that will be larger than at any previous Hall of Fame ceremony since the 1970s,'' he said.
Heckman himself is a member of the hall.
Inductees this year are:
Glenn L. Beall, a frequent speaker, consultant, engineer, educator and writer whose career has spanned 40 years, touching nearly every aspect of plastics processing. He is president of Glenn Beall Plastics Ltd. in Libertyville, Ill.
Robert D. Forger, longtime executive director of the Society of Plastics Engineers in Brookfield, Conn. Forger retired from SPE in 1993 and lives in Wilton, Conn.
Robert A. Hoffer Sr., an industry activist who supports plastics education and the Leominster plastics museum. Hoffer is founder and chairman of Hoffer Plastics Corp., a custom injection molder in South Elgin, Ill.
Frederick J. Karol, senior corporate fellow at Union Carbide Corp.'s Polyolefins Division. Karol is best known for his role in developing Carbide's Unipol process to make polyethylene.
Kwolek, a research chemist at DuPont Co. who developed Kevlar aramid fibers, which are five times stronger than steel by weight. Kwolek, who holds 17 U.S. patents, retired from DuPont in 1986 and lives in Wilmington, Del.
Maddock, another Union Carbide veteran, who did some of the first work in extruding thermoplastics beginning in the mid-1930s. Back then, extrusion was used to process rubber, but not plastics. Maddock died Nov. 9 in Lakewood, N.J. One of his inventions — adding a barrier mixing section to the extruder screw — still is known today as the Maddock Mixer.
Frank S. Marra, the president
of Marra International Associates in Bloomfield Hills, Mich., and a founder of the Plastics Academy. He also helped create Ferris State University's Plastics Engineering Center in Big Rapids, Mich. Marra worked at D-M-E Co. from 1949 until 1983, including stints in top executive positions.
James McGrath, a professor of polymer chemistry at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in Blacksburg, Va., and director of the National Science Foundation's Science & Technology Center at VPI.
George S. Nalle Jr., who founded Nalle Plastics Inc. in Austin, Texas, and developed a way to directly extrude nonwoven plastic netting. His invention has been used in everything from the common onion bag to a supporting structure for special membranes in medical dialysis machines.
William H. Joyce, chairman and chief executive officer of Union Carbide Corp. in Danbury, Conn., will be keynote speaker at the Chicago Hilton banquet. The Plastics Academy will give Joyce its Dan Fox Lifetime Achievement Award. Receiving an Achievement Award for Machinery Manufacturing will be Donald Rainville, president of Universal Dynamics Inc., an auxiliary equipment company in Woodbridge, Va.