NEW LEXINGTON — The Eastern Ohio Development Alliance (EODA) awarded local business and manufacturer Ludowici Roof Tile for outstanding excellence as a manufacturer.
The award was presented to the company in April at the Carlisle Inn in Walnut Creek where 200 people were in attendance along with Senator Rob Portman as the keynote speaker.
Every year, the EODA holds a meeting to recognize and promote economic growth for 16 counties in the State of Ohio. The EODA awards cover manufacturing, small businesses, tourism and technology.
The organization currently serves Athens, Belmont, Jefferson, Monroe, Carroll, Morgan, Columbiana, Muskingum, Coshocton, Noble, Guernsey, Harrison, Tuscarawas, Holmes, Washington, and Perry counties.
There to accept the award was Director of Facilities and Equipment Brad Smith as well as Service Center Manager Joe Jasper. The company was nominated by Executive Director of the Perry County Chamber of Commerce John Ulmer. This was also the first time ever that a company in Perry County has won the award.
“I just felt that Ludowici was a right fit for what they do for the community,” Ulmer said.
Ludowici was founded in 1888 and has been located in Perry County ever since. Since that time, architects, homeowners, universities, commercial and government clients have turned to Ludowic for uniquely beautiful terra cotta products that stand the test of time.
The company uses terra cotta, a natural material manufactured from earth and water to create its products. The material is a fired clay and is brown or reddish when unglazed. The material is typically used for architectural ornaments, pottery, structural units and for sculptures. Terra cotta also has a life expectancy of over 100 years.
“It is an energy-efficient sustainable choice for anyone’s building projects,” Ulmer stated at the annual EODA meeting. “Ludowici is committed to manufacturing architectural terra cotta products that honor their heritage from the earth.”
The tiles do not require maintenance compared to other tiles that need to be cleaned and replaced every 10-20 years. It also saves the environment from harsh chemicals used to clean roofs from filling up landfills.
“This means Ludowici tiles offer the lowest lifecycle costs in the industry,” Ulmer stated when introducing Ludowici for the award.
Ludowici serves many clients ranging from local homeowners to big celebrities and universities. Its tile has been placed at universities such as Duke, Colorado University, University of Arkansas, Princeton, Muskingum University, Iowa State and The Ohio State University. Some other locations include the Pennsylvania State Capital, Wrigley Field in Chicago, Disney Orlando, Met Life Building and Plaza Hotel in New York City as well as the Hershey Hotel.
The company also has tiling on residences of famous public figures. They include author Dan Brown, NBA Hall of Fame player Shaquille O’Neil, former NFL Coach Joe Gibbs, pop artist Alicia Keys and country artist Garth Brooks.
The company also has its tiling on buildings in Hong Kong, China, Canada, the Virgin Islands and Russia.
Ludowici currently, has 190 employees in New Lexington, which is the third largest among manufacturers in Perry County.
Ludowici also provides and gives back to the community. Founder’s Day is a free event for anyone as well as the Ludowici Community Foundation Park, which is open from dawn to dusk. The company also hosts blood drives every business quarter and are also contributors to the Perry County Shoe and Coat Drive, Perry County Animal Welfare Society Foundation, Southeast Ohio Food Bank and the Perry County Cancer Alliance.
Ludowici was among five that were presented excellence awards. EODA Executive Director Jim Schoch introduced the award recipients and their respective nominators.
The small business award recipients were Battle Horse Knives in Guernsey County and Guggisberg Cheese in Holmes County. The technology award recipient was Stewart Glapat Corporation in Muskingum County. Finally, the tourism award recipient was Historic Roscoe Village in Coshocton County.