PRINTING INDUSTRY VETERANS — LASTING IMPRESSIONS
“The salesperson asked me if I had any cash with me; I said I only had a few bucks,” Gorder recalls. “He also only had a couple of dollars. Between us, we only had enough money to pay for parking.”
Unfortunately, the airport bar did not accept credit cards. It was the dark days—before debit cards and 24-hour money access. When the client returned, Gorder and his co-worker had to sheepishly inform him that he would have to pay for the drinks. The client took the whole saga in stride.
“He looked at us, laughed and said, ‘Well, now I know your company doesn’t waste money on entertainment. I like that,’ ” Gorder relates. “We held onto that customer for many years.”
Bob Gray, 61
Director of Operations
New Washington, OH
“The artistic aspect of this business is very rewarding,” notes Bob Gray, who’s been in the industry for more than 35 years. “Helping your clients communicate a message to their customers is very worthwhile.”
Gray has made a career out of helping people, dating back to his time in the Peace Corps, where he provided management and engineering expertise for helping small businesses in India. “The working conditions were rather primitive,” he says. “It was quite a challenge to take limited resources and come up with products.”
In 1970 he joined his family’s business, Gray Printing, which opened in 1888. For nearly 20 years, Bob and cousin Scott Gray co-managed the company, which specialized in short-run magazines and publications, as well as business-to-business catalogs.
Unfortunately, a labor dispute that led to a strike and spiraling healthcare benefit costs aided in the demise of Gray Printing, which closed its doors in the fall of 2003.
Gray always prided his company on having solid relationships with its customers and vendors, which he considered his close friends. He was also instrumental in the tri-regional merger that created PIANKO, the Printing Industries Association for Northern Kentucky and Ohio.