Topre America accepts a plaque at the Japan America Society of Alabama annual dinner May 19, 2016 for the $8.5 million expansion at the Cullman facility during 2015. Pictured are, from left, JASA First Vice President Forrest Keith of Daiken America, Topre Director of Manufacturing Brad Pepper, Topre Human Resources Manager Natalie Caudle, Topre Senior Vice President Hiroki Fujiwara, Alabama Department of Commerce Assistant Director of Business Development Hollie Pegg, Former Cullman Economic Development Agency Director Peggy Smith and Cullman Economic Development Agency Director Dale Greer. / CEDA
CULLMAN – Topre America (TA), a major producer of pressed metal components for the automobile industry, is bringing new leadership to its headquarters in Cullman. Vice President Brad Pepper shared a little about the change.
According to Pepper, Cullman was the site of the first Topre plant outside of Japan. Since that time, Cullman has become the hub of a multi-state U.S. operation with additional plants in Tennessee, Mississippi and Ohio, and an engineering office in Toledo, Ohio.
“We’ve actually grown to become a pretty big organization,” said Pepper.
For several years, Senior Vice President Hiroki Fujiwara has been in charge of Topre’s American operations. On Friday, July 14, he will depart from Cullman to return home to the Topre Kyushu plant in Fukuoka, Japan, where Topre has recently set up a hot stamp press line similar to the newest production line whose construction he oversaw in Cullman. Fujiwara’s family already lives in Fukuoka.
Taking his place as senior VP of the American corporation will be Mimora Isaka. Isaka will assume all of Fujiwara’s former responsibilities including supervision of engineering and technical operations, communicating with Japan about the performance of the American corporation, acquisition of new equipment, and the location and setup of new plants in the U.S.
The company will officially say farewell to Fujiwara during a reception at Terri Pines on Friday.
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