Former MPIF President Jess Helsel dies age 91
December 5, 2016
The Metal Powder Industries Federation has reported that Jess F Helsel passed away on November 20, 2016, at his home at the age of 91. Helsel was President of the MPIF from 1969 to 1971 and received the Distinguished Service to Powder Metallurgy Award in 1982.
In 1951 Helsel was assigned by then employer, Wel-Met, Inc, to oversee the building of a manufacturing plant in Salem, Indiana. This was the start of Powder Metallurgy in Washington County, which today provides approximately 900 jobs in the region.
Helsel served as President of the company through a series of mergers to include building the first Powder Metallurgy operation in Mexico in 1957. During the late 60s, plants were operated in Hagerstown, Indiana, Angola, Indiana, St. Thomas, Ontario and a joint venture in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
In 1974 Helsel acquired a small plant in Indianapolis and in 1976 relocated it in Campbellsburg, Indiana, where it continues today as NetShape Technologies, Inc.
On the State scene, he served as President and Director of the Indiana State Chamber of Commerce, President and Director of the Indiana Manufacturers Association, and the Indiana Small Business Council.