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I. Gregg Van Wert Named 2003 Soderstrom Honoree

Friday, July 18, 2003

Press release from the issuing company

PARAMUS, N.J., July 17, 2003 – The Soderstrom Society of the National Association for Printing Leadership (NAPL) has named I. Gregg Van Wert, principal of The Haven Group, an industry consultancy, and former NAPL president, the recipient of the 43rd annual Walter E. Soderstrom Award. The award, one of the most prestigious honors in the printing industry, will be bestowed at the annual, invitation-only dinner meeting of the Walter E. Soderstrom Society, on Monday, September 29, 2003, at the Mid-America Club in Chicago. The award will be presented to Van Wert by David C. Branch, president of Branch-Smith Printing Ltd., Fort Worth, Texas, who will be inducted as Chairman of NAPL in September, succeeding James Hyder, president and chief executive officer of Fetter Printing Co., Louisville, Ky. In making the announcement, NAPL President and CEO Joseph P. Truncale noted that “everyone in our industry has benefited in some way from Gregg’s untiring service and dedication to advancing printers and the printing industry. It has been my privilege to work with Gregg at NAPL and be inspired by him. I can think of no one who is more deserving of this honor.” Named for the late Walter E. Soderstrom, one of the founders of NAPL, the award has been bestowed annually since 1961 to a distinguished individual who has contributed significantly to the development and progress of the printing industry. The recipient is selected by fellow members of the Soderstrom Society, an honors organization that provides industry leaders with the opportunity to exchange ideas, suggest improved practices, and recognize the contributions of their peers, including printing firm owners, equipment manufacturers, consultants, and educators. A Record of Service and Achievement I. Gregg Van Wert’s love of printing and the printing industry is lifelong. His father was a respected New York State printer and gifted artisan. The younger Van Wert began his career of service to the printing industry following his graduation from the Rochester Institute of Technology’s School of Printing Management and Sciences by becoming an active alumnus and RIT supporter and fundraiser. Following service in the U.S. Coast Guard aboard the weather ship, the U.S.C.G. Cutter Sherman, Van Wert made use of his considerable writing skills to return to the printing industry as managing editor of Printing Magazine, a Walden-Mott publication. He joined NAPL in 1973 as director of Communications. In subsequent years, he led the Association’s Member Relations, Continuing Education, and Exhibits activities. A graduate of NAPL’s Management Institute, Van Wert earned the designation of Certified Financial Management Executive. He assumed the positions of NAPL executive vice president and chief operating officer in 1982, and in 1991 was named NAPL president and chief executive officer, posts he held until his retirement in 2002. He is now principal of The Haven Group, an Oakland, N.J.-based consultancy that helps graphic arts companies with strategic management and marketing issues. A member of the Soderstrom Society, Van Wert is the recipient of numerous industry honors, including the Elmer G. Voigt Award of the Education Council of the Graphic Arts; the Gold Key Award of Gamma Epsilon Tau, the International Graphic Arts Honor Society; the RIT Distinguished Alumnus of the Year Award; the RIT School of Printing Management and Sciences Byron G. Culver Award; and the Friedman Medal of the High School of Graphic Communications Arts in New York City. Van Wert resides in Oakland, N.J., with Andrea, his wife of 33 years, and their daughter, Cynthia.

 

 

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