The Forging Industry Association (FIA) Board of Directors has developed a new award program to recognize forging industry veterans who have contributed greatly to both the forging industry at-large as well as the association itself. The 2021 FIA Lifetime Achievement Award Winners were announced during the FIA Annual Meeting of Members at the Grand Geneva Resort in Lake Geneva, WI. The 2021 FIA Lifetime Achievement Award Winners are:
Algirdas A. Underys
Al graduated from IIT in 1978 with a Bachelor of Science in Engineering and went to work at A. Finkl & Sons Co., now doing business as Finkl Steel, for his entire 42-year career. He was hired as a project engineer with main responsibilities in energy conservation. Being a small engineering group, he was assigned to a variety of tasks as the need arose. He served as Director of Engineering from 1988 to 1994, VAR Superintendent from 1989 to 2002, Director of Technology and Development from 1992 to 2002. In that role, he was in charge of metallurgy, quality, product development, and process development. He created and patented many alloys and processes – he has 20 United States patents and over a hundred international patents based on U.S. patents.
In 2007, Al joined the project team tasked with building the new Finkl Steel south-side facility. His initial tasks were focused on environmental issues and the NPDES construction permit application for the new facility. The permit was obtained for production levels that would leave future generations of Finkl Steel employees unhampered by limits to future expansion.
In 2015, Al was named Technical Director and then in 2018 Vice President, Technical for the entire Finkl Steel Group which included the Composite, Sorel, and Houston facilities until his retirement. Al has served on The FIA Plant Engineering committee from 1980 to 1986, and on the Technical Committee from 1993 to 2019. Al was on the FIERF Board of Trustees from 2013 to 2016 and served as the President of the FIERF Board from 2015 to 2016. Al continues to represent the FIA on the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 86 Oven and Furnaces Committee since 1988 and served as the committee’s chairman for a ten-year term from 1996 to 2006. Al has also served on the Forging Defense Manufacturing Consortium (FDMC) Technical Advisory Committee (2001 – 2019) and the FDMC Board from 2013 to 2019 and as its chairman from 2018 to 2019.