Besser marks 110 years as an industry fixture


Directors, staff, industry partners and community members recently gathered at Besser Co. world headquarters in Alpena, Mich., to celebrate the 110th anniversary of a company Jesse Besser—developer of one of the first hand-tamp block machines—founded at the dawn of the U.S. cement industry.

“[He] would be so pleased to see how many people have come out to celebrate 110 years of the business he started,” said past chairman Jim Park, whose commitment to the company and local interests is being honored with the 2015 launch of an annual tennis tournament, James C. Park Open, benefitting Alpena Community College (ACC) scholarship programs.

Additionally, ACC’s Dr. Olin Joynton presented Besser CEO Kevin Curtis a Resolution of Congratulations Plaque, provided by the ACC Board of Trustees and highlighting 60-plus years’ of the college and company working together in training and education. A picnic-style lunch was served as guests played games, toured Besser’s flagship facility and took a walk down memory lane through photos and videos from the past. Visitors also got a first-hand look at the latest technology as well as the Servopac block machine.

BR-BesserII-400In advance of the anniversary festivities, Besser offered a free Executive Training session, drawing 22 students from across the Americas. Presented at the ACC-hosted World Center for Concrete Technology, the course is geared toward executives and those new to the industry. Students learned about leadership, block production, and concrete technology while experiencing hands-on training in an advanced Besser concrete products plant. Courses are available throughout the year and detailed at

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