Category Archives: Employee Spotlight

Employee Spotlight: Vinny Dimino with Sponge Cushion

Throughout March, we’re highlighting people, places, and products within our Residential Products segment. Today we’re putting the spotlight on Vinny Dimino with Sponge Cushion, Inc.

Sponge Cushion manufactures high-density, premium carpet cushion made with 100% synthetic rubber. You may be more familiar with Sponge Cushion’s product brand name: Tred-MOR®. Located in Morris, Illinois, the operation has served commercial, hospitality, and residential industries since 1961.

Carpet cushions from Sponge Cushion provide lasting comfort underfoot and can extend the life expectance of carpet by up to 50%! Their acoustic underlayments can also enhance sound quality and reduce impact noise when used underneath wood, engineered wood, or laminate flooring.

Sponge Cushion products are sold through a variety of channels including wholesale distribution. However, most of their business comes through large commercial construction projects and international hotel chains. You can find their products in hotel rooms, casinos, conference centers, and businesses around the world. You may even have their underlayments in your own home.

Tell us about your background.

I began running a sales agency exclusively with Sponge Cushion in 1995. That opportunity focused on sales within the wholesale flooring market. In 2006, when the company was acquired by L&P, I continued on in a sales capacity. Then, in 2011 I joined L&P as the Eastern Regional Manager for our Hospitality and Commercial Sales Division, where I remain today.

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Employee Spotlight: Javier Montano with Vertex Fasteners

Throughout March, we’re highlighting people, places, and products within our Residential Products segment. First up, meet Javier Montano with Vertex Fasteners.

Vertex develops, manufactures, and distributes fasteners (such as clips, staples, nails, and rings), fastening tools, and fastening machines used in the assembly of many products.

Vertex primarily serve the markets of upholstered furniture, bedding, automotive seating, cages and traps, and fencing and razor wire. Serving this many distinct markets means serving many different customers, which is where Javier shines. As International Sales Manager, he interacts with customers around the world every single day.

Tell us about your background.

I have a background in Industrial Engineering, although for most of my career, I have worked in the technical side of sales. For almost 20 years, I worked for a company in the gas and welding industry, leading a marketing and business development unit as well as a team of welding applications experts. Continue reading

Providing Service with a Smile: Meet Two Faces in Facilities Management

If you’ve ever worked in the service industry or planned an event of any size, you know how demanding these roles can be. Nancy Robinson and Tammy Snyder work in the Facilities Department at L&P’s Corporate Office. Both can face hectic days, but they do so with smiles on their faces.

In the flurry of the service industry, you have to have a little fun, and Nancy and Tammy are two of our best at doing just that.

Nancy Robinson and Tammy Snyder.

Nancy Robinson and Tammy Snyder.

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Moving Overseas: How a Remote Auditor Balances Work, Travel, and Adventure

Andrea Dold was drawn to Leggett & Platt for the opportunity to travel and work with people across the world. After studying accounting, fraud examination, and technical writing at Pittsburg State University, she started her career with L&P in December 2010.

Andrea holds a unique position with the company because she works remotely. In fact, she recently moved even further away from the Corporate office. This past June, Andrea relocated to Ingolstadt, Germany, primarily due to her husband’s position in the Air Force. She will be living and working there for the next two years.

Ingolstadt

Andrea Dold and her husband take in the sights of Germany.

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Women in Leadership: Meet Griselda Ramos

“Take risks! Dive in! If you see a project of interest, volunteer for it. This marks you as a go-getter and someone who can be trusted with even more.”

Griselda Ramos has excellent insights for people early in their careers. She started her own career with Leggett 18 years ago as a Staff Accountant. “One of the things which really attracted me to Leggett straight out of school was handling several different kinds of accounting. There’s always a different flavor to what I’m doing!”

Griselda has worked in several roles during her tenure with Leggett. “I slowly moved my way up to Senior Accountant, Assistant Controller, and then Controller.” She currently serves as Regional Controller for our Fashion Bed Group (FBG).

Griselda and friends

Griselda Ramos (left) pictured with a few of her colleagues. From left to right are Wanda Bonilla (Customer Support Manager), Linda Hickey (Sr. VP of Operations for FBG), Debbie Choate (Customer Service Manager), and Julie Kee (HR Manager).

Her dedication and consistent performance are precisely why her manager nominated her for the Emerging Leader Academy, a Leggett program that provides training and development for our emerging leaders. “The Academy has been extremely beneficial,” she said. “It has really forced me to ask, ‘What can I do better in my role?’ and ‘What could I do differently for the company?’” Continue reading

Employee Spotlight: How an Engineer and His Team Built a Startup Electronics Lab (And What’s in Store for the Future)

Life is about taking risks, and a startup can be just that. When Eric Miller, Electronics Engineering Manager at L&P, was hired to launch an Electronics Lab for our Adjustable Bed Group in Kansas City, MO, he knew he would be in for a challenge. Eric had been working on his master’s degree in Engineering Management when he was contacted by Leggett. “As part of my coursework,” he said, “I had done a lot of in-depth studies on startup companies and entrepreneurs, and I found the idea of starting something from the ground up very appealing.”

Eric took the risk and joined L&P in April 2016, ready to embrace a “different kind of challenge.” Eric has always been interested in management, but at the same time, he considers himself an engineer at heart. “With this opportunity,” he said, “I saw a chance to jump into a management role while still be a part of the design process. I just couldn’t pass it up.”

Electronics Lab

Eric (left) with Patrick Millar, Senior Software Engineer for the Electronics Lab.

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Employee Spotlight: How a Trade Show Manager is Engineered to Flow

Selfless, lively, and zealous perfectly describe the personality of the Exhibit Solutions Manager Sharon Baird. She speaks with the same energy and joy while describing her children and grandchildren as she does while detailing her day-to-day at L&P.

Sharon Baird in her bright and colorful office space.

Sharon’s colorful office walls showcase her keen ability to organize!

As Exhibit Solutions Manager, she serves as a project management resource to others at L&P who use her help. She designs and procures trade show items such as backdrops, tables and chairs, and table coverings. She also assists with trade show strategy, like developing advertising, press releases, sponsorships, and an overall budget. When executing trade shows, Sharon travels a lot for the job – sometimes up to 3 weeks at a time. Continue reading

Machine Products: How A Commitment to Safety and Service Brings Success

When you walk through the doors of Machine Products (or Branch 79 as it’s also called), you’re instantly greeted with a down-to-earth warmth. From the friendly “hellos” exchanged on the production floor to the handshakes of a job particularly well done, pride is everywhere among the 90 employees at the facility.

The same sense of pride comes from branch leadership as well. Tom Wells, Jr., Division President, constantly commends his team for stepping up to the plate. “Unlike other Leggett branches that have a constant steady production flow, we do not know from month to month what type of work will come onto our schedule, but we take each day with great stride,” explained Tom.

Leggett & Platt has been a second home to Tom. After his father was hired by Leggett in 1974, Tom started performing janitorial duties during the summers as a teenager. Through the years, he spent most of his career in the Bedding Components Group. After years of hard work, he assumed the role of Division President for Machine Products in 2013.

An aerial shot of the expansive Machine Products facility in Carthage, Missouri.

An aerial shot of the expansive Machine Products facility in Carthage, Missouri.

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The Wide Reach of HFC International

Leggett & Platt’s Home Furniture Components division creates the mechanisms that make many household chairs recline or swivel. In fact, you probably have an item in your home that contains an HFC part! This division’s widespread reach wouldn’t be possible without the hard work of its international branches in China and Germany.

HFC in China

The International Home Furniture Components group has three branches in China, located in the cities of Jiaxing, Taizhou, and Huizhou. These three facilities handle everything from sales and engineering to production and distribution. This presents quite a challenge, given the large and diverse customer base IHFC serves, but the sales team travels internationally to work with customers so they get the products they need, when they need them.

“The China branches supply some of our major U.S. customers that have final assembly sites in China,” says Nick Cogan, Director of Integrated Business Planning. “They also ship directly to major U.S. customers and supply our international customers in Asia, Africa, and the EU.”

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Establishing Roots at L&P: Snapshots of Two Employees from Then and Now

1971: The first Starbucks was established and the cost of gas was $0.36 per gallon. It was also the year that Jerry Ralston began his career with L&P.

Jerry, fresh out of school, “just wanted to work.” For the past 45 years, he’s accomplished his goal. He joined Leggett as an employee at Carthage Spring, a facility which produces coil mattress units. In his first role, he cleaned boiling rooms (with actual dirt floors), tidied up bathrooms, and performed minor repairs. Many days, he says, he returned home looking like a coal miner.

He then worked in the Chromecraft department, where he monitored machinery and crated finished goods. After about seven years and wearing several hats, he was relocated to Phoenix, Arizona to work at our Phoenix Spring location.

In 1991, he was relocated back to Carthage Spring, where he now works as the Maintenance Superintendent. “I’ve really enjoyed seeing processes become more automated over the years,” Jerry said. “This job used to be extremely labor-intensive. It has been very rewarding to be a part of significant change at Leggett.”

When not at work, Jerry enjoys spending time outdoors with his family, playing golf, and fishing. In the next five years, he would love to retire and build a log cabin at the lake.

Kile (left) and Jerry inside the Carthage Spring facility.

Kile (left) and Jerry inside the Carthage Spring facility.

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