SAN CLEMENTE, Calif.—Getting the gang back together again is something people may discuss often, but it doesn't come to fruition. However, at IRP Medical, that became a reality.
Eleven former Hi-Tech Rubber Inc. employees are now working together again at IRP Medical, a subsidiary of International Rubber Products.
In 2008, Parker Hannifin Corp. purchased all the shares of HTR Holding Corp., which included its subsidiaries: Hi-Tech Rubber, Inland Technologies Inc., Ventrex Inc. and Accusil Inc. After the acquisition, several members of the senior leadership team, including key technical, customer service, quality and engineering, left the company for other rubber and silicone manufacturing companies, according to Trey Atkins, executive vice president of IRP Medical.
Rey Obnamia, vice president of technology and regulatory affairs at IRP Medical, said when Parker came in, it implemented its own way of managing the business, which was different than how Hi-Tech was handled.
The late Bill Sherman, who was president and chief operating officer of the Hi-Tech Group companies, had introduced Atkins to Rod Trujillo, CEO of IRP, in 2009. At the time, Atkins had been working as vice president of operations for Innovative Surgical Products, a division of Tustin, Calif.-based Specialty Silicone Fabricators Inc. Atkins later went on to work for Vesta, but when IRP purchased the current IRP Medical facility housed in San Clemente, he decided to join the team.
Atkins said some Hi-Tech alum were already on board when he signed on, including Danny Gomez, operations manager, and Ray Rozelle, facilities manager. Phil Banker, engineering manager, was hired around the same time as Atkins. Obnamia joined in July 2014. Besides these five key players, six others from Hi-Tech currently work for IRP Medical: one QA inspector, one molding/setup technician and four machine operators.
“It is a rarity to get a team together again. We felt we were really successful at Hi-Tech Rubber and the Hi-Tech Group companies,” Atkins said.
“We all worked really well together there, and we felt we did a great job of customer service and doing the hard liquid molding jobs there at Hi-Tech. We had all gone to different companies and for one reason or another, whether it's new opportunity, more responsibility, layoffs, just a happenstance, the timing was right for a lot of us.”
In total, the IRP Medical division has about 50 employees, accounting for half of IRP's work force.