Suppliers play an extremely important role in the ink industry. With that in mind, the National Association of Printing Ink Manufacturers (NAPIM) presents the Technical Associate Member (TAM) Service Award each year to a supplier who has provided distinguished service to the industry.
Adrian Polman, center, who recently retired as sales manager for Buhler, received NAPIM's TAMService Award from Rich Czarnecki of Superior Printing Ink, as Mr. Polman's wife Wanda joined the celebration.
“Receiving such a prestigious award overwhelmed me,” Mr. Polman said. “I sincerely appreciate the trust and confidence that my customers have placed in me.”
A 36-year ink industry veteran, Mr. Polman is an ideal choice. He has mentored many of his colleagues and developed strong relationships with his customers. He has also been instrumental in developing many innovations in milling technology, and is a strong supporter of NAPIM as well as a frequent lecturer at many industry events.
“Adrian is a good mentor to me and many other people at Buhler,” said René Eisenring, GD sales manager for Buhler Inc. USA, who has been given the challenging task of filling Mr. Polman’s shoes as ink industry leader at Buhler. “Adrian is very knowledgeable about how to interact with people. He is a good listener and brings the right solutions to the customers. We will definitely miss him.”
Mr. Polman and the Ink Industry
Mr. Polman was already working for Buhler when the company needed a sales person to work with the ink and coatings industry, and he saw that as a good opportunity.
“Buhler was in need of a sales person for the ink and coating industry,” Mr. Polman recalled. “Having worked in sales for a number of divisions in Buhler, I took the challenge to learn about, for me, a new and interesting industry.”
He transferred from Europe to North America in 1972, and began working for Buhler Canada in 1974. He quickly saw the importance of automation for the ink industry, and introduced the pneumatic conveying system. This allowed customers to automate the powder handling and reduce dust in the mixing area of ink plants. Mr. Polman looks upon this achievement as one of the highlights of his career.
“One of the highlights of my career was the implementation of automated ink production lines, from pigment intake to canning. Another would be the implementation of flush production lines with extruders,” Mr. Polman said.
Mr. Polman’s ability to listen to others has greatly influenced his work.
“Not any company or person, but a lot of things, influenced me inside the industry, mainly the willingness to listen to new approaches in the manufacturing process of ink, automation, energy savings and shorter dispersion times from start to finish,” Mr. Polman said. “Outside the ink industry I would like to mention that I have also been influenced by the green movement, the alternative to fossil fuel such as biomass and biofuel.”
Now that he has retired, Mr. Polman remains a consultant to Buhler, while enjoying time with his wife Wanda and his family as well as pursuing his hobbies.
“My life besides work involves my family. I enjoy swimming, going for walks and when times permits, gardening and going to yoga classes,” he said.
All in all, Mr. Polman has enjoyed his decision to move to the ink industry.
“The ink industry is a relatively small, closely knit community and I have enjoyed being a part of that family,” Mr. Polman concluded.