When Stephen Rudy CEF was getting close to retirement several years ago, he began wondering what he would do to keep himself busy.
“I asked myself about nine months before I retired, ‘What are you going to do with your time?’” says Rudy, who started his own company, Chem Analytic, which offers wet analysis of metal finishing solutions, hull cell plating test and evaluation, and training services for the plating industry.
With a 40+ year career in the finishing industry, Rudy has seen — and solved — many issues that occur in plating operations.
He began his finishing career at the Frederick Gumm Chemical Co. in 1983. He was with the Gumm company for over 16 years and went through several corporate acquisitions before landing at Hubbard-Hall, where he spent his last 12 years doing technical support for the company’s many clients.
Rudy says he credits Nabil Zaki from the Gumm company for interviewing him and hiring him into the industry.
“He interviewed me, and he felt it was worth taking a chance on me and hired me,” Rudy says. “I’ll always be grateful for that opportunity to get started.”
Rudy also credits in his early years the assistance of Larry Durney, who was also a vice president at Gumm Chemical.
“He was a smart guy, and he put you to the test every day with practical problems,” he says. “He was also a great mentor.”
Rudy graduated with a chemistry degree from Rutgers University and continued with graduate degree studies in chemistry. He achieved his CEF designation soon after entering the metal finishing industry.
Rudy has been a prolific author in his career in metal finishing. He authored two chapters in The Metal Finishing Guidebook and Directory, addressing general surface preparation and for specific metal alloys, in addition to acid pickling. He also wrote the monthly Think Tank column in the NASF’s Plating & Surface Finishing magazine for over 10 years
As a corporate Technical Service Manager, Rudy’s product R&D lab and pilot work encompassed cleaning, plating, and post treatments. Additionally, his dedicated research work formulated product development of specialty cleaning processes, environmentally compliant stripping organic coatings, and effective mass finishing systems.
Rudy was also a plating school instructor for many years. He was past two-term AESF Garden State branch president and is on the board of the MAMF.