J. Bradley, 65, fostered AMBA's growth
ROSELLE, ILL. - Jeanette Bradley's career in plastics began with a letter.
Her husband, Olav Bradley, who co-owned mold-making firm PM Mold Co. of Schaumburg, Ill., asked if she'd help write a letter for a group of mold builders.
That group became the American Mold Builders Association. In 1977, four years after the group formed in Chicago, its members recruited Bradley to handle all the administrative work. A few years later, she was named executive director and guided the group's growth until her retirement in 2007.
Bradley, who had been battling the blood disorder myelodysplasia for a year, died Dec. 17.
``She truly poured her heart and soul into this organization,'' said Michael Armbrust, general manager of Mako Mold Corp. of St. Charles, Ill., and a member of the AMBA board of directors. ``Before her, we were an industry without a voice or a platform. She and Olav had the vision not only for their company, but for the industry as a whole.''
The AMBA had 35 mold makers when Bradley began working with the new organization. There are now more than 300 firms in the group, which is based in Roselle, with 12 chapters.
After her retirement, the board named its scholarship program in her honor.
What may be more of a testament, Armbrust said, is that the organization Bradley developed through 30 years does not rely on any one person, no matter how important that person was.
``She built such a great foundation for us to grow on, that we're going to be around for a long time,'' he said.
In addition to her husband, Bradley is survived by two sons, Tom and David.
Steve Reko, 70, founded toolmaking firm
WINDSOR, ONTARIO - Steve Reko, 70, founder, chief executive officer and president of publicly traded tooling supplier Reko International Group Inc., died Dec. 22 after a brief illness.
Reko immigrated to Canada from Hungary in 1957 and eventually settled in Windsor. After some factory experience, he founded Reko Tool in 1977. Headquartered in Oldcastle, Ontario, the group has grown to 10 production facilities in Canada and the United States.
Reko manufactures molds and other tooling for the automotive, aerospace and consumer product markets. Reko is survived by his wife, Shirley, and four daughters. His eldest daughter, Diane St. John, was named acting CEO. Greg Henwood was named president.