Ron and Katherine Harper Provide Major Grant To FFTA 'TEST' Program


The Foundation of Flexographic Technical Association (FFTA) has received a major endowment from Ron and Katherine Harper, long-time supporters of flexo education. The grant, bestowed over the course of two years, will fund the start-up costs of TEST (Technical Educational Services Team), the FFTA’s most important educational initiative.
“Katherine and I have been passionate about the concept of expanding flexographic education and increasing awareness of the flexographic process ever since the FFTA introduced the Flexo in High Schools and Colleges program, which began in 1990 with a $1 million fund raising campaign. With that successful history in mind, we are ecstatic with the enormous potential of the FFTA TEST program,” said Ron Harper. “When we were first approached about supporting the launch of the FFTA TEST agenda, our immediate reaction was, “Never before in FTA’s 50 year history has a more stimulating, inspirational or more important program been initiated. This is not just raising the level of flexo education, or taking it to the next step, but rather it is a profound and significant leap forward in creating an ongoing, consistent and standardized message throughout our industry, and throughout institutional flexo education.”
The TEST initiative aims to rebuild the Foundation’s educational products and services by offering multiple basic, intermediate and advanced levels of curricula, in multiple formats and languages, and all with the principles and practices identified in FTA’s FIRST – Flexographic Image Reproduction Specifications & Tolerances book. Its four main objectives include: secondary and post-secondary programs; co-sponsored seminars and events; customized training & consulting; and a Virtual Campus. Leading the TEST program is FTA Education Director Joe Tuccitto.
“Ron and I have seen Joe Tuccitto’s enthusiasm and passion for flexo education eloquently displayed during his tenure as an educator/trainer with the Dunwoody College of Technology, Anderson & Vreeland and through his volunteer work with the Phoenix Challenge Foundation,” noted Katherine Harper. “His vigorous commitment to excellence is apparent in everything Joe touches. We are delighted that FFTA encouraged him to accept the challenge of organizing, implementing and managing this dynamic and essential TEST initiative.”
Ron and Katherine Harper, longtime proponents and benefactors of numerous flexo educational initiatives, founded Harper Corporation of America in 1971 to build base cylinders for the engraving and chrome plating trades. Today, Harper Corporation of America is the leading innovator in anilox roll production and restoration for the corrugated, wide web, narrow web and newspaper flexographic printing markets. The company operates globally with manufacturing facilities in Charlotte, NC and Green Bay, WI.; and licensees Harper Asia/Pacific, Bangkok, Thailand; and Harper Graphics, Hereford, Germany.