CEO of IMS Buhrke-Olson Honored for Service to Tool & Die Industry
Mike Chester caps a long career with this custom manufacturer of precision metal stampings and assemblies for the automotive, appliance, electronics and industrial markets.
Mike Chester, the chief executive officer of IMS Buhrke-Olson (Arlington Heights, IL), was recently selected as this year’s winner of the Winzeler Award at the TMA’s 86th annual meeting in March. The honor is bestowed annually on an individual who demonstrates outstanding service to the tool and die industry.
Chester’s career began with the tool and die apprenticeship program through Triton Community College in River Grove, IL and the TMA in Park Ridge, IL. As an experienced tool and die maker, Chester joined Buhrke Industries Inc. in 1986. Positions as lead die maker and tool room shop steward gave him the opportunity to demonstrate his management skills. When Fred Buhrke, the company’s founder, decided to retire and sell the company in 2001, Chester and a partner where able to obtain financing to acquire the company.
In 2004 Buhrke Industries merged with Innovative Manufacturing Solutions Inc. (IMS) to form IMS Buhrke LLC. At that time Chester was named the president of the IMS Companies group and CEO of IMS Buhrke. In 2008 the company expanded further through the acquisition of Olson International Ltd. to form IMS Buhrke-Olson. Chester remained in his position of CEO of IMS Buhrke-Olson and now also serves as the vice chairman of IMS.
IMS Buhrke-Olson, a division of IMS Companies LLC, is a custom manufacturer of precision metal stampings and assemblies for the automotive, appliance, electronics and industrial markets. The company has manufacturing and tool building operations in the U.S. and in Mexico.
The TMA is Illinois’ premier full service manufacturing association serving nearly 1,000 member companies in Northern Illinois. The Winzeler Award was originally established in 1971 in memory of Max Heinz and Johnny Winzeler, two pioneer members of the TMA. The award is presented annually to recognize industry and association leaders. www.imsmfg.com