Sedalia plant manager named MPW’s 2017 Salaried Employee of the Year

“Throughout his career, Ronnie has been a model employee, making dramatic improvements to Sedalia in employee morale, service and infrastructure.”
Tim Dondero
Ronnie Price, Sedalia plant manager, opens gifts during a dinner held in his honor.

Ronnie Price was pondering a return to Missouri even before his phone rang.

It was 2013 and Price had just spent more than 3 years installing industrial water systems and working steam blows in Florida.

Price answered his phone and Jared Black asked him if he was interested in MPW’s plant manager position in Sedalia, Mo. Price said yes.

Five years later, Price answered another call from Black.

This time Price learned MPW had named him 2017 Salaried Employee of the Year.

“Being named Employee of the Year — I don’t know if I can put how that felt into words,” Price said. “It’s such an honor that they thought that much of me with so many other great, deserving people out there. It’s a fantastic honor.”

Black said Price is more than worthy of the award.

“Ronnie has taken complete responsibility for the Sedalia plant,” Black said. “We are continually impressed with how he runs that location like it’s his own business as well as the results he achieves.”

Price has accumulated an impressive list of professional accomplishments in the 10 years since he came to MPW as a CDL driver out of the Sedalia plant. Most recently, this includes:

• In 2017, Sedalia’s Critical Commercial Quality Incidents per 100 trailers measured 0.75, the lowest of any MPW plant in the last 4 years.

• Sedalia’s 2017 Safety Observation rate was 98 percent.

• Since January 2017, Sedalia accounted for only one missed order despite a record-setting winter.

• Sedalia’s 2017 cost per cubic foot regenerated was 20 percent lower than the MPW average.

• After MPW identified a safety concern related to the steps on DI trailers, Price coordinated the retrofit project to install stow-and-go steps on 48 trailers.

“Ronnie’s career has been about consistent improvement,” said MPW General Manager Tim Dondero. “Safety, quality, service, cost and the way he handles himself as a manager. He’s always focused on working for the customer.”

Jeff Thornton, MPW’s Director of Plant Services, said experience and industry knowledge have earned Price a substantial amount of responsibility.

“In 2017, all new IW drivers started spending 2 weeks in Sedalia with Ronnie, learning equipment operation,” Thornton said. “Also, due to his semi expertise, he’s become an approver for every IW
truck repair expense.”

Thornton and Dondero both praised Price’s ability to hire and retain CDL drivers, despite a national driver shortage.

“Driver staffing continues to be a major strategic objective for IW, and Sedalia is the only plant that is fully staffed in terms of drivers — all because of Ronnie’s efforts,” Dondero said.

Work ethic is another area in which Price excels, according to Thornton.

“He always puts in the work, but he never tries to take credit for anything,” Thornton said. “He’ll run out to customer sites to troubleshoot, support other regen facilities or work in the shops. For him, it’s not just about Sedalia. He sees the importance of supporting other places.”

Dondero agreed.

“Ronnie’s one of the hardest workers I’ve ever seen in my career, but he still manages to spend enough time with his family,” he said. “He’s a model employee. When we designed our Model Achiever Assessment Test for HR, he’s one of the people we had in mind.”

Price said he’s proud to work for MPW because the company routinely invests in its employees.

“MPW offers such great opportunities,” he said. “If you put yourself in the right position you can do anything if you apply yourself. And there’s room for advancement here. Sometimes there are a lot of hours, but management understands and appreciates that, and they will acknowledge your work.”

Previous MPW Salaried Employees of the Year

2008 John Cihon
2009 Brent Hamilton
2010 Shane DeFazio
2012 Justin Pierce
2013 Moe (Gary) Berger
2014 Duane Jolliff
2015 Wendy Carter
2016 Dustin Kieber

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