This story begins many decades ago in Hawaii when a young American serving in the military met a young Chinese woman who moved there speaking little English. He was fluent in Chinese, however, and the two married and eventually settled down in Seattle, WA. Because the young man’s family had a background in the drycleaning industry, he used that knowledge to open new plants in the Emerald City.
The industry worked together last month to convince the Los Angeles City Council to keep drycleaning poly safe from the city’s ordinance that bans single-use plastic bags. Other items were voted to be added to the ban on Dec. 1, including styrofoam, plastic pharmacy, produce and farmer’s market bags, as well as plastic foodware and single use plastic at all city-run facilities and events.
With a new year comes a new batch of opportunities for newcomers and veterans alike to develop or hone their drycleaning skills at the Drycleaning and Laundry Institute’s School of Drycleaning Technology in Laurel, MD. This year, the association will host three separate sessions of its comprehensive signature courses: the one week Introductory to Drycleaning course and the two-week Advanced Drycleaning course.
Usually at this time of the year, we like to reflect on the past and evaluate where we are. We make New Year’s resolutions and plans to make big changes going forward. Do you do this?
I admit, while I very seldom make them public, I do make them to myself. Sorry to say, but I very rarely hit the mark, usually fail, and find myself making the same ones the following year. But, not this year. This year I have only one goal, and I hope you can do the same for you and your business. I will get back to that.
A new year brings with it new hope, new concerns and new goals for each and every one of us. We get on conference calls, forums, share with our peers while keeping an eye on our competition. We all look forward, or hold onto the past, but a meeting with a dear friend last month reminded me of one thing — “The journey through life is slowed down by the baggage we carry with us.”
Last month, I discussed the essential components of a reciprocating compressor: motor, pump, and receiver (tank) — which you’ll find on every machine in this family of compressor.This month I will be explaining the function of other components that, when combined, make up a complete air compressor. So, in review, the electric motor is connected to the pump using belts.
Before we get into this month’s topic, all of us at Methods for Management would like to wish you a great New Year! I assume that each of you have created written goals for the year. All of my adult children love it when I call on New Year’s Day to see if they have completed theirs. With that, let’s dive in. Regardless of your industry, one thing makes the world go around in business: sales. So, if you do not have a sales team that consist of your route drivers and customer service representatives (CSR) that sizzles, you will struggle mightily.
Your Customer Service Representatives (CSR) are the face of your company. They create a trust between your customer and the work you do. You know the importance of the CSR when you look at the chemical and equipment manufacturers you deal with and the people that represent them. I know that many have loyal followers because of the knowledge they impart.
A lthough the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) is over 50 years old, few employers know how to react when they see an OSHA compliance officer. As a result, many employers find themselves fighting citations that might have been avoided with a little planning. Keep in mind, a compliance officer is an intruder at your facility. The U.S. Supreme Court has said that a compliance officer is just like a police officer looking to gather evidence of a crime.
The 21st Century has not been an easy one for drycleaners who have had to contend with a calvacade of regulations, recessions, shortages and pandemic lockdowns, but many in the industry are feeling a bit optimistic about the opportunities ahead this year (see Peter Blake’s column on page 18, and James Peuster’s column on page 20). The drycleaning industry seems primed for growth in 2023, but things easily could have gone very differently for drycleaners in Los Angeles, CA, who dodged a regulatory bullet.
Jan’s Professional Dry Cleaners, based in Clio, MI, started this year by receiving notification of its official national certification as an affiliate of America’s Best Cleaners (ABC). The business was founded in 1982 by owner Jan Barlow, who is a certified Garment Care Professional.
In March, the Illinois Professional Drycleaners and Launderers (IPDL) will host a new event — “Education Extravaganza 2023” — at Sankosha’s facilities located in Elk Grove Village, IL. It will be the first educational event presented by the association since 2019.
Paul “Oz” Osterhage, co-founder of Fabritec International, passed away at the age of 71 on Jan. 1, 2023, following a seven-month battle with esophageal cancer. “Paul started with my dad, Al Jordan, in founding Fabritec in 1977,” noted John “J.J.” Jordan, president of Fabritec International. “For over 45 years, he served as chief accountant and office leader. Paul was a key part of the success of Fabritec and the Sanitone division.”
Joel Hardy Dampier of Fayetteville, GA, passed away on Nov. 22, 2022, at the age of 86. Early in life, he attended Riverdale First Baptist Church and then Harps Crossing Baptist Church of Fayetteville. He was also a U.S. Army veteran and a member of the Riverdale Masonic Lodge #709.
Glyndon Lord Baltimore Cleaners has received notification of its official national certification as an affiliate of America’s Best Cleaners. The company is a third-generation family owned and operated business that has served the Baltimore area for over a century. Originally named Glyndon Cleaners, the business was founded by the Merrick family in 1921 and later sold to Robert Mathias in the 1940s. In the late 1990s, Glyndon Cleaners merged with Lord Baltimore Cleaners to become Glyndon Lord Baltimore Cleaners.
Born in 1947 to Tommy and Betty Watkins, Mark Watkins hailed from the city of Birmingham, AL.
He went on to start Mark’s Quality Cleaners there in 1981 and serve as a long-time board member of the South Eastern Fabricare Association (SEFA) and the Drycleaning and Laundry Institute (DLI).
Seitz — The Fresher Company (North America) and parent company, Seitz GmbH recently noted some changes and additions to some of its positions. Matt Bizzack of Phoenix, AZ – who joined Seitz Chemical in late 2021 – will be the technical representative for Arizona, lower Nevada including Las Vegas and southern California. Matt and his wife Kim own Legend Cleaners and New Wave Equipment, both in Phoenix. Matt will be spending the majority of his time in sales and service of Seitz accounts in these southwestern states. He brings nearly 25 years of industry knowledge and understands best practices of drycleaning, wetcleaning and equipment operation and maintenance.
Recently, an international jury of independent Professional Textile Care (PTC) experts, chaired by Geert Boettger, determined the winners of CINET’s Global Best Practices Awards for 2022. Overall, 46 finalist companies competed in three categories: Industrial Textile Services (ITS); Retail Textile Cleaning (Small); and Retail Textile Cleaning (Big).
After 37 years with Unipress, Tom Stites has decided to retire.
The 2022 offering of EXPOdetergo International, the international exhibition dedicated to machinery, services and products for laundry, ironing and textile cleaning, closed with 17,144 operators, 40% from 106 countries. The event attracted the presence of companies from all over the world. Of the 250 exhibitors, one-third of them were foreign coming from 22 countries, and all of the leading associations of the Italian market – Assofornitori, Assosistema, Assosecco, CNA and Confartigianato – who chose to bring their know-how to the fair.
UNX-Christeyns welcomed James Basier to its team as a new territory manager. Like many, he started his career learning what it meant to work hard. He spent years serving others doing social work before entering this industry.
Since 1998, the city of Modesto, California, has engaged in a series of lawsuits against Dow Chemical and PPG Industries for selling tetrachloroethylene (perc) to drycleaners across the city – a product attributed to causing the contamination of the soil and groundwater at 23 former plant locations. In mid-October, the 24-year-old case took a step forward when a 12-member jury hit Dow Chemicals and PPG Industries with a $4 million verdict in damages to Modesto for cleanup costs of one site at 409 Seventh St.
Exhibitors still have until the end of the year to reserve a booth price at 20% off for the Southwest Drycleaners Association’s (SDA) Cleaners Showcase, which will take place at the Irving Convention Center in Irving, TX, from April 28 to 30, 2023.
The third quarter of the year has proven to be a busy one for the consulting firm Methods for Management (MfM). The group recently hosted August meetings in Ft. Worth, TX, and Omaha, NE, as well as a meeting last month in Winnipeg, Manitoba in Canada.
Drycleaning & Laundry Institute officials swore in DLI’s 2022-2023 Board of Directors at its Summer 2022 Board Meeting in Atlanta. DLI’s Board is comprised of fabricare business owners and operators from eight regions around the U.S., an Executive Committee, and Allied Trades representatives. All Board members volunteer their time and energy to guide the Institute toward providing the best benefit to DLI member cleaning professionals.
During Clean ’22, Poseidon Textile Care Systems® (Poseidon) showcased its complete product offering of textile care equipment and solutions. Drawing crowds were live demonstrations of the new Poseidon Genius Series Wet Cleaning Machines – touting the largest touchscreen user interface in the industry; Poseidon new-technology dryers, which safely dry even the most delicate fabrics; and Poseidon Flatwork Ironers, which quickly iron bed and table linens. Several end-user promotions, new and innovative custom finance options, and extended factory Platinum Warranties were also introduced.
The Western States Drycleaners and Launderers Association (WSDLA) will join forces and merge with the Southwest Drycleaners Association (SDA).