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Keough, Neff relish Gold Medals

Brian Sandalow, Associate Editor

FORT WORTH, Texas – The American Foundry Society bestowed two Gold Medals on Tuesday night. Both recipients took the honors to heart.

John R. Keough and Dr. David Neff received their medals at the Annual Banquet. Keough, the proprietor of Joyworks LLC (Ann Arbor, Michigan) got the Thomas W. Pangborn Gold Medal for pioneering efforts in the advancement of the marketing of metal castings through the education of current and future customers.

“It’s quite humbling because when you look at the list of people who have done that over the years you think ‘Wow, these are pillars of the metalcasting industry and I’m just on the journey there,’” Keough said. “To have these people say ‘Wow, you are amongst that group’ that is a big honor and something that is kind of hard to digest.

Neff, retired from Metaullics Systems (Aurora, Colorado), won the John A. Penton Gold Medal for his technical contributions to the metalcasting industry especially in the areas of research, publications, presentations, and technical education.

“It’s a lifetime achievement award. I’ve been a member of AFS since 1975 and when I would come to these events, looked at those folks who were getting awards and said ‘Gosh, I wonder if I could do that,’” Neff said. “Here I am several years later, and very pleased to join a very august bunch of folks who have gone before me who have received a variety of different AFS awards.”

Oman Delivers Hoyt Lecture

Dan Oman, a vice president at Haley & Aldrich (Ann Arbor, Michigan), delivered the Hoyt Memorial Lecture. Oman, who is responsible for delivery of environmental, health and safety services to the metalcasting industry, gave his speech, “Changing Perceptions: The Need for an Unbalanced Force.”

During his remarks, Oman outlined four common steps in the process of changing somebody’s perceptions. He said it’s important that people understand it requires a logical process and that each step is important.

It was also important to Oman to deliver this year’s Hoyt Lecture. And challenging.

“I’ve given almost a hundred talks to foundry folks, but this one was truly an honor and something that I really had to think about long and hard, a lot more than any other presentation I’ve given,” Oman said. “It was a lot of effort but I’m glad I got the chance to do it.”

A Historic Moment

When Jean Bye officially becomes AFS president it will be a meaningful and significant change in the history of the organization. Bye will be the first woman AFS president.

“It’s been a lot of years coming. To me personally, it’s not a big deal but I think it opens up the industry and for the other women to see that it is possible to be in this industry and to work through the ranks if they work at it,” she said. “I think from an industry standpoint, it doubles the talent that’s out there, to have women not leave the industry because they perceive that they have no upward potential.”

Bye also received the inaugural Women in Metalcasting Award for Excellence at the group’s annual breakfast.

The staff of Modern Casting will provide daily updates on the 122nd Metalcasting Congress. For full coverage, check out the May issue of the magazine.