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    Small print shop makes big impression

    Small Print Shop Makes Big Impression

    Photo By Staff Sgt. Angela Parady | Sgt. Tyler Perkins, a materials handler, prepares products for shipping in the...... read more read more



    Story by Sgt. Angela Parady 

    121st Public Affairs Detachment

    AUGUSTA, Maine - In a building located slightly behind the United States Property and Fiscal Office with the same worn down brick façade, stands the largely unknown print plant, with a small team of dedicated civilians and soldiers who work together to produce documents for the entire National Guard.

    The National Guard Bureau Duplicating and Forms Center, or ‘print plant’ as it is more widely known, was established at Camp Keyes in June 1953, as a printing plant for checklists and other component forms exclusively. Over the years the plant has grown and shifted responsibilities. It now prints all of the forms and duplication requests for the entire National Guard, consisting of all 54 states and territories.

    Rachel Dufour is the civilian print specialist at the plant. She has been working at the plant for the last 27 years, and has seen many of the changes and shifts as the plant has developed.

    “At first we produced the component lists for the National Guard. In 1982 the plant was approved for operation as a duplicating facility, and later that year the field printing plant was re-designated as the NGB duplicating and forms center.”

    Dufour said that the print plant used to just service NGB, but now they also print for the states when it comes to the states’ federal mission.

    “We print between one and two million impressions per month. An impression is a print on one side. Print on two sides is two impressions.”

    Staff Sgt. Daniel Trojecki is another familiar face at the plant. The National Guardsmen spends his weekends with 1st Platoon, 1136th Transportation Company in Bangor, but Monday through Friday he works at the plant as a Digital Productions Systems Technician.
    He said that as the individual responsible for preparing all of the print requests, he helps make sure that the jobs are delivered on time.

    “I digitally prepare all of the print requests,” Trojecki said. “First I get them sized. Then I see if it will print in booklet format, or flipbook format. The binding that they want, if they need laminations, holes, et cetera. The tactical operation books are the worst. You should see what goes into make one! Then I take it through production, then to shipping. I make sure it goes out on time, but I have a whole warehouse of people who help.”

    Both Dufour and Trojecki enjoy the hands on aspect of their jobs. Trojecki said his favorite part of being in the print plant was seeing everything that comes through.

    “Sometimes you get a job order that is a little bit different,” he said. “I was handed a book of papers that was an old unit ministry book that someone wanted duplicated, I mean old. I had to scan all of the pages and review all of the digital images. I made some changes here and there, print it off and make it look like new. I think that is the coolest part sometimes. We have this responsibility. People need these materials and we are providing it for them. Its people I will never meet, or see, but will be happy when they get this product, on time.”

    Dufour also said that even though the job could appear to be mundane, it is anything but.

    “There is always something new,” she said. “My favorite is when someone calls me about a printing project they have in mind, but aren’t exactly sure how they want to do it. I can help give them ideas on how to print it, how to bind it. I can tell them what I have for equipment, what we have done in the past. It really gives me a sense of accomplishment, to advise these people who have never worked with us before, and take their project and see what we can do for a final product.”

    The print shop is divided into three sections. There is the front of house section, where forms are digitally transferred and the specialists work with clients to help them get the product they want. That’s where Dufour and Trojecki work. Then there is the production side, where they do all of the printing and the binding. Then lastly, the warehouse where the package all of the jobs and prepare them for shipping.

    “People don’t always realize how labor intensive these jobs are, and how many hands actually touch their documents,” said Trojecki. “They will order 4000 copies of something, and from form feeding the paper to the printer, to the binding, to reviewing the documents, everyone here touches every document at least once, if not twice.”

    Dufour agreed, commenting on the teamwork and cooperation the plant puts in to get products ready for the customer.

    “I get a lot of calls from people calling to thank me for our help,” she said. “I always have to tell them it’s not me; it’s the whole staff here. There is the person setting up the job, the person printing, someone binding, the people out in shipping who actually package and ship the job, the whole facility is involved in getting the order completed. Our teamwork divides the task and multiples our success.”



    Date Taken: 07.21.2014
    Date Posted: 07.21.2014 14:13
    Story ID: 136783
    Location: AUGUSTA, ME, US 
    Hometown: AUGUSTA, ME, US

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