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Operations plant manager Charlie Garabedian

The End of a Chapter – Charlie Garabedian Retires

Western Colloid announces the retirement of Charlie Garabedian, Manager of Plant Operations, at the end of this year.

Charlie began in our Oakland, California plant in 1980 and learned the ins and outs of manufacturing and facilities management from the original founders of Western Colloid Steve and Larry Widmer. In 1984, after mastering the colloid process, he spent a year traveling between three plants making Asphalt Emulsion.  In 1985 a permanent positon opened up as plant manager and he was asked to remain in the new Southern California manufacturing facility in Los Angeles.

Under Charlie’s management our Los Angeles plant flourished and has grown to be one of the largest manufacturers of fluid applied roof coatings in the country.  His mentorship has been invaluable to our growth into other states with distributions facilities and our Alvarado, Texas plant.

“Western Colloid was built to service contractors” Charlie says, “We thought like contractors, and built our business around the things that contractors rely on.  Dependable deliveries with clean equipment.  Quality and consistent products.”

With that focus on the customer’s needs Charlie has been integral in customizing our delivery tanker fleet to be able to deliver bulk products to our contractors. We have a fleet of 35 tankers in our Los Angeles location. Along with storage tankers and equipment in various locations he has kept the products flowing and the customers satisfied.

Part of Charlie’s secret to a successful career, “I treated Western Colloid as my own company.”

By operating our plant, maintaining quality production and shipping in a consistent manner for over 40 years, he helped show the roofing industry that coatings were a viable option for roof replacements. Without men like Charlie helping trail-blaze the way, the roof coatings industry might not be what it is today.

“Charlie has been such an integral part of the culture at Western Colloid we will miss him and his years of experience” states Western Colloid President Greg Hlavaty, “Fortunately, Charlie has prepared us well for this transition and is leaving us in good hands.” Greg states, “We wish him the best with his retirement.  He has earned it.”

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