The Plastics Pioneers Association has named two new members: machinery veterans Wolfgang Meyer and Robert Elmer Sprague.
Membership in PPA is limited to 250 active members, who must have at least 25 years of experience in the industry. An existing PPA member must sponsor each nominee. They are judged on their contributions to the industry's advancement.
Meyer is president of W. Muller USA Inc. He began his career in Germany, first for Bayer AG and then Schloemann-Siemag AG as an application engineer. In the U.S., he worked as product manager for structural foam machinery at Beloit Corp.
He then had a 24-year career with injection press maker Battenfeld of America Inc., ending as president for the last 16 years. Meyer then spent a decade as president of blow molding machinery maker Kautex Machines Inc.
W. Muller USA, based in Agawam, Mass., is the U.S. operation of German blow molding machinery maker W. Muller GmbH.
A member of the Society of Plastics Engineers since 1982, Meyer has chaired several committees, including the injection molding division. He also headed several machinery-related committees of the Society of the Plastics Industry Inc.
He lives in Califon, N.J.
Sprague, who retired in 2000, enjoyed a 45-year career in the industry. He spent six years as a sales engineer with Davis-Standard Corp. and several years as vice president of sales at Sterling Extruder Corp.
Sprague then formed his own manufacturers' representative company, Process Machinery Inc., and ran it for 29 years. His company also provided consulting and liquidation services and helped major corporations buy and sell new and used machinery. At the same time, he was involved in the ownership of JLN Corp., a used machinery company in Worcester, Mass.
Outside of the plastics industry, Sprague served as chairman for the 1987 U.S. women's amateur golf tournament and the Rhode Island Country Club. A resident of Barrington, R.I., he is active in local government.