For many of our customers and vendors, the name ChemRite CoPac is synonymous with the word “quality”. Gaining this reliable industry reputation has been a corporate effort and would not have been possible without strong leadership. A key part of this leadership is our Director of Quality Assurance and Compliance, Rich Reineking. Rich’s aptitude in chemistry, his focus on developing and implementing vital quality processes and his attention to detail have made him an ideal lead for ChemRite’s Quality Control Department.
Rich was born in Storm Lake, Iowa. At age 6, he moved with his family to Hamburg, Minnesota, where he later attended Norwood-Young America High School. He excelled in science, especially biology and chemistry. He accredits his teachers for building up excitement for science experiments and making learning fun. After high school, Rich attended Lakeland College in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. The school holds special meaning for Rich, not only because it is his alma mater, but also because his great, great grandfather donated part of the land on which the school now sits. While attending the school, it became clear that his natural talents excelled in biology and chemistry. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts with a Major in Biology, Minor in Chemistry and Minor in Laboratory Administration.
After college, Rich moved back to Minnesota and worked for a pharmaceutical company. The company manufactured animal graderich-pic pharmaceuticals such as sterile saline solution and sterile glucose solution. As the Sterile Room Supervisor, he managed day and night time shifts of personnel. The position helped Rich to develop his supervisory skills, knowledge of pharmaceutical level sterilization and a sound understanding of the packaging and manufacturing process.
Rich went on to accept a position as a QC Technician for a Minnesota based manufacturer of personal care products. The company manufactured hand soaps, lotions, toothpaste and various home fragrances. As a QC Technician, Rich was responsible for daily line checks on all of the company’s liquid fill and toothpaste production. In time, he was promoted to the position of QC Coordinator. He was responsible for writing and reviewing quality procedures, reviewing quality rejections, carrying out corrective actions and overseeing the company’s QC Technicians. Because the company was a FDA regulated and OTC compliant facility, the position taught Rich how to implement a controlled quality system in a real world production environment.
In 1991, Rich moved to the Milwaukee area and accepted a position as QC Supervisor for medical care products manufacturer. This job opportunity enhanced Rich’s quality control skills, involved him further in formulation chemistry and gave him a solid knowledge of form/fill/seal, or packet, packaging.
Then in 1992, a job opportunity became available at ChemRite for a QC Supervisor. ChemRite’s management felt Rich’s extensive experience and knowledgeable understanding of regulated quality processes would make him an instrumental addition to the ChemRite team. This has certainly proven to be true. Rich has risen to the challenge of ChemRite’s unique production environment and has helped create a specialized quality system which incorporates our customer’s quality standards into our own. He has overseen the expansion of ChemRite’s Quality Manual, QA Test Methods, QAFG, QAPM and QARM documentation. Rich has also played an invaluable role in developing ChemRite’s purified water system, converting our internal quality program from DOS to a Windows based operating system and the successful outcome of numerous customer and FDA audit processes.
Currently Rich holds the position of Director of Quality Assurance and Compliance. This position requires an extensive range of oversight responsibilities, but Rich maintains a focus on cultivating continuous quality improvement. When asked what inspires Rich about his current position, he said, “It’s a feeling of accomplishment of being able to do what may be considered impossible. We can take an extremely difficult project, identify the issues and make it efficient to run. We consistently succeed in that.”
Rich and his wife, Bonnie, will be celebrating their 20th wedding anniversary in May of this year. Bonnie works as an administrative assistant at a local church. In his free time, Rich runs his grandmother’s farm which produces field corn and soybeans. In addition, Rich has been involved with an amateur theater group which presents various plays and musicals. His favorite role was that of Pseudolus in the musical “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum”. He also enjoys singing with the Ozaukee County Chorus, which meets weekly and performs 2 concerts a year.
A quality process is only as good as the people who have created and follow it. At ChemRite, our quality system structures the place in which we work, the people who work within the company’s walls and the products we produce. The end result is continually evaluated by the end-user (the consumer), who validates our existence through the purchase of our customer’s products. If you haven’t already done so, we invite you to meet Rich and the rest of the ChemRite team. Come and see how our employees set us apart.