STRONGSVILLE, OHIO - David Walters, national sales manager at Van Dorn Demag Corp. through most of the 1990s, has left the Ohio injection press maker to start his own manufacturers' representative firm in Virginia.
His last day in Strongsville was June 29. Two weeks later, he opened shop at Colonial Plastic Machinery Inc. near Charlottesville, Va. After 10 years at Van Dorn, and a total of 26 years of machinery experience working for other people, Walters now is his own boss.
Interviewed in Strongsville in late June as he boxed up belongings, he said his move has nothing to do with the recent layoffs and furloughs at Van Dorn Demag as the firm struggles with the slowest machinery market in a decade.
It was his decision to take over the territory left open by the retirement of veteran representative Roger Doherty, who ran Value Systems in Charlottesville, said Walters, 51.
``It's always a territory that I wanted to go back to. I've always had an interest to be a rep, but I wanted to be selective,'' he said.
Walters was born in Washington and grew up in southern Maryland. His family lives in Virginia and Maryland. Doherty's retirement left open the territory for Conair Group auxiliary equipment and Xaloy Inc., a screw and barrel maker.
Colonial Plastic Machinery will sell Conair and Xaloy lines, plus extruders from Merritt Davis Corp., in Virginia, Maryland and Delaware. Walters' firm will sell Van Dorn Demag presses in Virginia and Maryland.
Walters said Van Dorn reps from other states historically have covered Virginia, but the injection press maker can benefit from a direct presence in the state.
``It's a privilege for me to have this kind of a line card,'' he said.
Walters joined Van Dorn in 1991, after serving as a Cleveland-based sales manager for controller maker Barber-Colman Co. Before that, he was sales manager at Ferry Industries Inc., the rotational molding machine maker then based in Kent, Ohio. He earned a bachelor's degree in economics from Otterbein College in Westerville, Ohio, in 1973 and took a job in rubber products for then-BFGoodrich Co. before joining Ferry in 1975. At Van Dorn Demag, Walters was national sales manager until early 2000, when he became regional sales manager.
Colonial Plastic Machinery's telephone numbers became active in mid-July. Tel. (804) 589-2385, fax (804) 589-2394.