A vote taken among employees at Columbia Forest Products' Hearst plywood-manufacturing facility is being celebrated as a sign th at the operation is doing all it can to transition to solvency and competitiveness during the worst economic climate in recent history.

The employees agreed to one of several options that were proposed to help manage costs during this rough business cycle, including an extension of a wage freeze that has been in effect for several months.

Gary Gillespie, Vice President of Columbia's Northern Operations, said that "the spirit of cooperation and teamsmanship demonstrated through our employees' action was a real sign of positive energy for our collective future. None of us have seen challenges like the ones we're facing now, and it's essential that we all work together to get past them as a team".

"We are confident that all the efforts we are taking, from lean manufacturing techniques, supervisory assignments, and a new gain share incentive program, will strengthen our ability to compete in our markets in a stronger way going forward," he added.

Gillespie noted that the new momentum was also made possible with the ongoing support of the Mayor of Hearst, Roger Sigouin and the Minister of Northern Development, Mines and Forestry; the Honorable Michael Gravelle. Gillespie concluded that the recent positive vote was a "great moment for Columbia, its Hearst employees, and the city of Hearst."

About Columbia Forest Products

Founded in 1957, Columbia Forest Products is North America's largest manufacturer of hardwood plywood and hardwood veneer, a leader in sustainable forestry, and innovator of formaldehyde-free PureBond® technology.

Columbia's decorative interior veneers and panels are used in cabinetry, furniture, architectural millwork and commercial fixtures. Employee-owned and based in Greensboro, North Carolina, Columbia employs more than 2,000 and operates facilities throughout the United States and Canada, and a global operational network.

SOURCE: Columbia Forest Products

Have something to say? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.