A lot of people drive past NPC’s corporate headquarters — a large production facility covering hundreds of thousands of square feet — yet very few outside the company really know what goes on inside the big brown building in Claysburg, Pennsylvania.
So, when more than 30 individuals from both the Blair County Chamber of Commerce and its Farm-City Committee got a behind-the-scenes tour of NPC during the committee’s annual “Visit to Industry” event on October 26, 2017, what they saw definitely opened some eyes.
Bill Black, a retired farmer who lives in nearby Sinking Valley, thought the NPC facility tour “was fascinating” and said that “it’s always nice to see what the county has to offer.”
Bill’s wife, Judy, who is a member of the Farm-City Committee and is active in both 4-H and FFA (Future Farmers of America), “knew nothing about the company” and was surprised to find out that NPC “did so much government printing.”
For over two decades, NPC has been ranked among the top suppliers of print and related services to the Federal Government. NPC was awarded the most work from the U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO) for seven out of eight years from 2009-2016, and was second on the list in 2014.
The Blair Chamber’s Farm-City Committee oversees all Farm-City activities that focus on educating and informing residents on the importance of agriculture in our region. The mission of the Committee is “to develop a broad range of educational programming that provides Blair County residents with the opportunities to experience and understand the significant impact of agriculture in Blair County.”
NPC, an integral part of the Blair County business community since 1954 and a long-time member of the Blair County Chamber of Commerce, wanted to help support this mission by welcoming the group for an informational facility visit, production plant tour, and lunch, capped off by distributing “thank you” NPC gift bags for all in attendance.
“I think people on the tour were amazed at what you do,” said Joe Diamond, chairman of the Farm-City Committee and a Pennsylvania Farm Bureau Regional Organization Director serving Blair, Bedford, Cambria, Clearfield, Indiana and Somerset counties. “You are a hidden treasure in Blair County.”
NPC’s Krissa Weyant, Recruiting Specialist and Executive Assistant, started the day with a brief company overview and history, followed by Brian Bracken, Trainer/Instructional Designer, who shared the importance of safety and security when walking through NPC’s production areas.
Tom Urbain, Senior Training Specialist, gave attendees an abbreviated version of the company’s Print 101, a hands-on overview of the printing process, and IT Manager Danielle Gerko explained the role technology plays in just about everything we do.
Attendees were all given a tour of the production plant inside NPC’s headquarters, getting a chance to see the company’s offset and digital print operations, inkjet, mail, binding and finishing areas. The visit wrapped up with a question-and-answer session with NPC’s Executive Vice President and Chief Operations Officer, Bob Latoche, who answered a number of questions ranging from the company’s 24/7 production work schedule to recurring inquiries about how the culture of the organization and our mission statement drive everyday decisions at NPC.
In addition to NPC’s tour being “really interesting,” Stephanie Onkst, who works for the PA Department of Labor & Industry’s Office of Vocational Rehabilitation in Altoona, said the visit was “very well organized and the staff was very knowledgeable and nice.” Stephanie, who said she has participated in a number of factory tours, added that “from start to finish on the mission statement, the culture, and the leadership, the company is sincere about not only what’s best for the company, but what’s best for the people.”
NPC has printed and mailed the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau’s bi-monthly, full-color glossy magazine, Positively Pennsylvania, for a number of years. The print version of the magazine is sent to more than 30,000 members across the state.
For more on the PA Farm Bureau, visit www.pfb.com.
“The purpose of the (Farm-City) Committee is to educate, advocate and promote on behalf of the farming community and the business community (in Blair County),” said Stacy Hoover, Vice President of Events and Technology for The Chamber of Blair County. She serves as the Chamber’s coordinator on the Farm-City Committee.
Diamond said these types of events are also about connecting people in agriculture with people in business in the county.
“The number one industry in this county is agriculture, and we’re building bridges for those in agriculture to see what other industries have to offer,” Diamond said of these “Visit to Industry” events. “We help people get to know what Blair County has to offer.
“Every year we try to bring the agricultural community into a business to see what they do. It’s all about education.”