Bray receives 2017 paper industry leadership award

Jack Bray

Jack Bray, vice president of manufacturing operations at Domtar Corp. and a 1981 graduate of WMU’s paper science and engineering program, recently was honored with the 2017 Excellence in Leadership Award from the Association of Suppliers for the Paper Industry (ASPI). Established in 2010, the ASPI Excellence in Leadership Award honors senior level managers for unique and creative leadership of their employees and key suppliers during major projects. 

“Jack was nominated for this award as he is known in the industry for his leadership and mentorship, whether working with employees or the supplier base,” said Keith Kemp, ASPI president and the vice president of global sales for Asten Johnson Advanced Fabrics.  “Jack has been involved with new mill start-ups and improving ongoing operations and has always built environments where working together for success is the norm.”

Bray has held his current position at Domtar in Montreal, Quebec, since 2015. He previously was vice president of manufacturing for Domtar’s Region 2 from 2011 to 2015. He also served as vice president and mill manager for Domtar in Hawesville, Ky., from 2007 to 2011.

Bray has more than 37 years of executive, leadership and management experience in pulp and paper manufacturing operations. In 1980, Bray began his career as a technical engineer and later, as production superintendent, at Westvaco Corp. in Covington, Va. From 1989 to 1994, he worked for Menasha Corp. in Otsego, Mich., as a paper mill production manager. In 1994, Bray became production manager and later, vice president and mill manager, at Cedar Rapids Paper in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. In 2002, he started working with Domtar at the Plymouth Mill in North Carolina as general manager. There, he led the mill operations, manufacturing 420,00 tons of UCFS and 12,000 tons of fluff pulp. In 2007, he became general manager of the Hawesville Mill in Hawesville, Ky., where he made key contributions that led to safety excellence, increased reliability, cost reductions, and the re-positioning of a paper machine to higher value grades. In 2011 he was named vice president of Region 2 mills for Domtar Pulp and Paper, where he was responsible for six pulp and paper mills.  Bray’s ability to turn around underperforming operations and improve quality, safety and productivity led to his promotion and current position as vice president of manufacturing operations. He has full responsibility of 11 pulp and paper mills across North America, which include a recent $200 million asset repurposing project from a paper machine to market fluff pulp.

Bray serves on the board of the Paper Technology Foundation at WMU, the Health and Human Performance Advisory Board at Eastern Carolina University, and is a board member of the Chamber of Commerce, Rock Hill, S.C., and president of the board of trustees of the Miami University of Ohio Paper Foundation. He is an active member of TAPPI and a past member of the PIMA Executive Council.