Navigating through the Covid-19 Pandemic is an ongoing challenge throughout the world and here locally in St. Charles, IL. To tackle this challenge, Dukane learned that being nimble and resourceful was a requirement. Jen Gustafson, Dukane’s Vice President of Human Resources and Administration, has championed Dukane’s Covid-19 response and managed the ever-changing risks to our team members, customers, and vendors. As an essential workforce, it was a top priority to get our St. Charles team members vaccinated as soon as possible. Early in 2021, Covid-19 vaccines were in short supply, and getting one vaccine was a challenge, let alone trying to secure vaccines for an entire workforce. Jen, being ever so resourceful, reached out to our Illinois State Representative Maura Hirschauer for additional guidance on securing vaccination appointments and volunteered Dukane to host a vaccine clinic. While State Representative Maura Hirschauer’s office could not secure appointments for the workforce, her office was able to provide guidance on upcoming mass vaccination events. Dukane was able to utilize the vaccination clinic hosted by the Valley Industrial Association which has helped Dukane vaccinate more than 75% of their St. Charles workforce. Relaxing Covid-19 mitigation efforts, bringing team members back to the office, and allowing for customers and vendors to begin visiting our facility is all the results of the Dukane team taking action and getting vaccinated to fight this pandemic.
On June 22nd, 2021 Dukane, an ultrasonic welding equipment manufacturer, welcomed Illinois State Representative Maura Hirschauer, of the 49th District to visit our St. Charles facility. It was an opportunity to thank her and her team in person, while also discussing how Dukane impacts the local community. Dukane President & CEO, Mike Johnston shared the 99-year history of Dukane and its origin as Operadio. Mike and State Representative Hirschauer shared interest in continued career and technical education to develop skilled workers. Dukane has a large skilled workforce and has found it difficult to find the right people to fill some of these skilled positions. State Representative Maura has identified this as a key pillar for rebuilding Illinois after the Covid-19 pandemic and the future of Illinois businesses. Mike also discussed how Dukane has had a strong relationship with the “International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers union for many years and currently has an apprenticeship program through the union to support the future development of these skilled workers. To finish the visit, Mike gave State Representative Maura a tour of the Dukane facility and explained how Dukane’s equipment is used to assemble the products they use every day. Dukane thanks State Representative Maura Hirschauer for visiting our facility and we appreciate her eagerness to learn more about manufacturing in the 49th District.