Carruthers’ career started in 1964 as a color matcher in the leather industry. He then joined Ciba Geigy in Paisley, Scotland in 1966 as a laboratory technician in the Phthalocyanine pigment research group. Progressing with them through various chemist levels in the Azo Pigment Group, he was sponsored by Ciba Geigy to complete his advanced degree in chemistry from Salford University in 1970. He then went on to become the Pilot Plant manager of Paisley in 1972.
In 1976, he joined Sun Chemical, based in Cincinnati, OH. Starting in their research department working on aqueous dispersions and flush color development, he rose to become the flush color development manager in 1979. In 1980 he transferred to Muskegon MI as technical manager, returning in 1984 to Cincinnati as ink industry manager and technical service manager.
In 1985 he spent a year in France working in a new Sun Chemical flush color facility, and in 1993, transferred to Denmark for three years to run a new pigment plant in Koge, which was purchased from KVK. In 1996, he was transferred to Brussels to become ink industry manager in Europe for four years. In 2000 he returned back to Cincinnati as general manager Merchant Ink NAFTA, and later became a VP and general manager, which is his present position at Sun Chemical Performance Pigments.
“Maurice has been a great friend and mentor, and a great role model in certain areas,” said Chris Allen of Sun Chemical Performance Pigments, who served as master of ceremonies. “If you became a friend , and he has many, you knew he would give you the shirt off his back. I want to say thank you for all you have done for me.”
“When Maurice came to our lab and you told him the problem you needed to solve, the product he would bring back would be right on the mark,” added Sal Moscuzza, retired from Superior Printing Ink and the 2008 Man of the Year honoree. “He is one of the best technical men to ever come into Superior.”
Carruthers told the story of how he came to be involved in the pigment industry back in Scotland.
“When I was 14, my twin brother Graham and I worked part-time with my father in his carpentry business,” he said. “When I was 16, my dad took us for a beer, and asked us what we wanted to be. My brother said he wanted to be a carpenter, and I said I wanted to be a carpenter, too. My dad said to me, ‘You’re the worst carpenter I ever saw. Go gat an education,’ so I ended up going to work at Ciba Geigy as a lab technician.
“I’d like to thank everybody in the Metro New York club,” Carruthers added. “I’m so privileged to be in this position.”
For more photos from the MNYPIA dinner, please see this Flickr file here.