NAPIM Spring Convention 2023 Spring Convention Awards Wrap-Up
March 24–26, 2023 • Silverado Resort & Spa • Napa Valley, CA
2023 Spring Convention Awards Wrap-Up
The Silverado Resort & Spa, in Napa, California, was the site of NAPIM’s 2023 Annual Spring Convention. Over 120 members and non-members gathered to enjoy a sunny, picturesque resort while learning about important topics concerning ink sustainability, environmental standards, regulatory and economic issues, and artificial intelligence. Attendees also participated in golf outings, various excursions, and other activities throughout the weekend.
One of the highlights of NAPIM’s Annual Spring Convention is the Awards Reception and Dinner where members are honored for their accomplishments and contributions made in the industry. NAPIM honored five members with the “Printing Ink Pioneer” award and one member with NAPIM’s most prestigious award, the Ault Award.
See award recipients below:
The Printing Ink Pioneer Awardees (PIP)
Jim Kochanny, INX International Ink Co.
Jim began his career in our industry with BASF in their Coatings and Colorant Division in May of 1979. In 1993, Jim was hired by INX International as Plant Manager, and in 1999, Jim was promoted to General Manager his career continued to expand to what it is today as INK Senior Vice President, COO, and an INX Board member. He has always supported and utilized training opportunities for his employees that are provided by the NAPIM Technical Conferences and the Summer Course.
Ralph Arcurio, Sun Chemical
Ralph has devoted more than 38 years of service to Sun Chemical and the ink industry and holds 14 U.S. patents to his name. His inventions have made significant contributions to Sun Chemical and our support of NAPIM initiatives. In 2016, Ralph was honored with the "Inventor of the Year Award" by the NJ Inventors Hall of Fame.
Jim Bishop, Sun Chemical
Jim has provided many contributions to the industry, but there are two that highlight his technical contribution. Jim won two InterTech GATF awards (now Printing Industries of America) for technical achievement and innovation: both the Liberty Offset Technology Award in 2006 and the Low Migration Offset Technology Award in 2012. During Jim's 40+ year career, he has presented at various industry events, most recently at Pack Expo in Chicago on Low Migration packaging.
Carl Hirsch, Ink Systems, Inc.
Carl went to his first pressroom with his father, Urban Hirsch, CEO of Ink Systems, Inc., and grandfather, Mel Phelzer, at the age of six years old. He got paid a nickel to memorize the primary colors out of a Pantone book and at 9 years old he got a quarter for every formula he entered into the computer. He attended college at Wash University in St Louis getting a B.A. in psychology and returned to working at Ink Systems straight after college in 1997. This year he has helped to lead NAPIM by serving as the association’s treasurer. Carl has worked hard alongside his father for many years, and a few years ago moved into his current role as President of Ink Systems Inc.
Neil Hersh, Eckart America Corp.
Neil’s career in Graphic Arts began in September 1990 as a Management Trainee in the General Printing Ink division of Sun Chemical. Neil’s time at GPI included Branch Manager roles in St. Louis, San Leandro, and Atlanta. In 2010, Neil joined ECKART America – where he has held various roles including the leadership of ECKART’s Graphic Arts team. He is exceptionally professional and a great supporter of this industry.
Ault Award Awardee. (NAPIM’s most prestigious award)
John Hrdlick, INX International Ink Co.
John Hrdlick began his career at Acme Printing in 1977 as a third-shift millhand. Acme later became part of INX International when it was one of the first North American acquisitions made by Sakata INX. Throughout his tenure, John learned the business from the ground up and he accepted a variety of jobs at different locations throughout the United States consistently rising through the ranks to become Senior Vice President and COO in 2011. John received the NAPIM Printing Ink Pioneer Award in 2013. In April 2018, he was appointed President, and in just one year, he added CEO to his title in April 2019.
John has been recently recognized for his exceptional contributions to the printing ink industry by receiving the esteemed 2023 Anthony Mauriello Award. This prestigious award is presented to individuals who have demonstrated outstanding dedication and commitment to promoting the welfare and progress of the industry.