Highland Heights, Kentucky – June 2, 2009 – General Cable’s Altoona, Pennsylvania manufacturing facility, which produces ignition wire, is proudly celebrating its 20th anniversary.  The plant currently employs over 275 associates, 57 who have been with General Cable since the plant opened in 1989.  They will be celebrating this important milestone with their families, friends and retirees on Saturday, June 6th during a Family Day event, which is being held at the facility. 

“Our Altoona associates’ commitment to excellence and to being the best overall value producer of ignition wire products for our Original Equipment Manufacturing (OEM) and Automotive Aftermarket customers has been rewarded by new business opportunities throughout its 20-year history,” said Roger A. Roundhouse, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Specialty Wire Harnesses and Telecommunications for General Cable.  “When the plant opened in 1989, Altoona associates assembled less than one million ignition wire sets annually.  In 2008, they assembled almost nine million sets, turning their inventory 61 times.  That is truly an amazing accomplishment!”

“Despite ongoing challenges over the years, from a changing customer-market, foreign competition and the economic climate, the Altoona plant has continued to thrive,” added Mark A. Thackeray, General Cable’s Senior Vice President, North American Operations.  “With each new challenge, our Company’s Altoona associates have created new opportunities by embracing new technologies, systems, Lean and Six Sigma manufacturing tools, and most importantly, new ways of working together as a team to increase their competitiveness and production capacity.  Today, thanks to their continued efforts, they can proudly boast that the General Cable Altoona plant is the world’s largest production facility for ignition wire sets.”

“In addition to our plant’s outstanding manufacturing accomplishments, we are also proud of the role we play in the local community where we live and work,” said Ken Smith, General Cable Altoona’s Plant Manager.  “Our associates have made financial contributions and volunteered their time to support important causes like Project Winter Warmth, the Easter Seals Softball Marathon, the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life, the Special Olympics, the Salvation Army, Toys-for-Tots and many local school and athletic programs.”

“In keeping with our belief that it is of the utmost importance to give back to our community, this 20-year celebration will include an auction and a dunking booth with all proceeds from these two events being donated to Project Winter Warmth,” concluded Smith.

“We are proud to congratulate Altoona associate, Mary Jane Rickabaugh, who submitted the winning design in our contest to create a 20-year Altoona anniversary logo,” added Nikki Yost, General Cable’s Manager of Human Resources at the Altoona plant.  “Mary Jane recently celebrated her 40th wedding anniversary with her husband, John, who is also employed at General Cable’s Altoona plant.  They have two lovely children, Jenn and John, and five grandchildren.” 

Mary Jane is proud of her 20-year anniversary logo design, but she gives some credit to her husband for helping challenge her with the idea and drawing it in AutoCAD after she sketched the logo on paper.  She is a member of the plant’s communications team, the 20-year anniversary committee and writes articles for The SPARK, the General Cable Altoona plant’s monthly newsletter.

General Cable (NYSE: BGC), a Fortune 500 company headquartered in Highland Heights, Kentucky, is a leader in the development, design, manufacture, marketing and distribution of copper, aluminum and fiber optic wire and cable products for the energy, industrial, specialty and communications markets. Energy cables include low-, medium- and high-voltage power distribution and power transmission products. The Industrial and Specialty segment is comprised of application-specific cables for uses such as electrical power generation (traditional fuels, alternative and renewable sources, and distributed generation), the oil, gas and petrochemical industries, mining, industrial automation, marine, military and aerospace applications, power applications in the telecommunications industry, and other key industrial segments. Communications wire and cable products transmit low-voltage signals for voice, data, video and control applications. General Cable, with annual revenues over $6 billion, has 46 manufacturing facilities in 23 countries and offers competitive strengths in such areas as breadth of product line, brand recognition, distribution and logistics, sales and service and operating efficiency. Visit our website at


Release No. 0612