October 11, 2011

Company Has Meant a Lot to Community

History repeats itself. Just look at Hercules, which now operates as Pinova.

One hundred years ago, when the chemical plant began operations in Brunswick, the jobs it brought were sorely, sorely needed. It was, without exaggeration, a godsend to individuals and families who had been struggling to make ends meet.

Fast forward to 2011, a time when jobs, good jobs, are just as hard to find as they were a century ago. Hercules is still here. So are the jobs, minus those that have been replaced by science and advanced technology. Chalk that up to the cost of competitiveness.

One hundred years – now, that's stick-to-itiveness in its highest form. It's the kind of loyalty that Glynn County, as well as Georgia and the nation as a whole, could well afford to see more of in this 21st century.

Free trade agreements have cost the country millions of jobs, with industry after industry folding on U.S. soil and restarting operations in other nations. It's a heavy toll that shows up in labor statistics month after month. Unemployment is as high as it ever has been. Industries and the jobs they create just aren't around like they used to be.

Pinova is, though. That might not be impressive to everyone, but it is if you happen to be one of the lucky 240 who work there. And it is if you're one of the hundreds of businesses that depend on the earnings the plant and its employees spend.

Unlike so many other industries, Pinova never shirked its responsibility by fleeing across the ocean or making a mad dash for the protective cover of bankruptcy. It's owned up to its mistakes and is taking care of them.

Moreover, it has been a good neighbor to Glynn County. It has contributed to virtually countless community causes, to charities and efforts far too numerous to name. And why not? This has been its home for more than a lifetime. It's been it's home for a century.

Happy 100th birthday, Pinova and company. May you endure, continue your success, for another 100 years.