WestRock’s Alleghany Highlands Operations in Covington, Virginia has announced personnel position changes that were internally announced in May and June 2022.

Tim Elmore has accepted the position of Reliability Engineer in the E&I department. In this role he will be the technical lead supporting production, maintenance, and engineering on projects related to continuing process improvement and reliability.

Elmore earned an A.A.S. in Electrical Engineering Technology from DSLCC in 1989, and his B.S. in Electronic Engineering Technology from West Virginia Institute of Technology in 1991. He joined Gala Industries in 1991 and spent time as an electrical engineer and a field service technician. In 2006, Elmore went to work as his own boss as co-owner of Alleghany Electric and Automation. He joined WestRock in 2008 as an E&I journeyman.

Rusty Barnette has accepted the position of Recovery Training Coordinator. In this position, he will be responsible for coordinating training material and procedures for all operators and keeping training records up to date. He will work with department leadership to drive safety and update and implement new policies and procedures while ensuring operators are trained appropriately and that all jobs have multiple opportunities for step up coverage. In addition, Barnette will utilize daily and weekly work as an opportunity to reinforce operators’ initial training.

Barnette graduated from Covington High School. He joined Creative Fabrication after graduation and was hired onto the Westvaco Extra Board in 1995. He moved to Recovery as a laborer in 1996 and moved to second assistant in 2005. Barnette became assistant operator in Recovery in 2016.

Zach Dressler has accepted the position of E&I Planner in the paper mill. In this position, he is responsible for reliability centered E&I activities and projects which include planning and support duties in the paper mill area while ensuring adherence to safe work practices and guidelines.

Dressler graduated from Covington High School in 2015 and obtained an A.A.S. degree from New River Community College in 2018. He began his career with AirGas in plant maintenance in 2018.

Dana Aherron has accepted the position of Process Engineer in Analytical Services. Aherron will be focused on process improvement projects in the Recovery department to improve safety, quality, and costs. She will manage the evaporator and NCG system, plan evaporator outages, and drive continuous improvement.

Aherron received her B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Virginia Tech this year. She worked as a validation engineering intern with Voyant Beauty from May to August 2020 in Roanoke, Virginia, and as a product development co-op from May 2019 to January 2020 at Printpack in Williamsburg, Virginia.

Cory Booth has accepted the position of Process Engineer in the Analytical department. He is currently assigned to the E&I department, where he will support safety, reliability, and cost improvement initiatives across the entire mill.

Booth earned his high school diploma from James Monroe High School in Lindside, West Virginia, in 2018 and his B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Bluefield State College this year. He interned with American Mine Research in Rocky Gap in 2021.

John Hancock has accepted the position of Regional Fiber Supply Manager for the Covington mill. Hancock will support the continued alignment between the Covington fiber supply operations and the eastern Virginia and North Carolina fiber supply operations at West Point, Hopewell, and Roanoke Rapids.

Hancock received his B.S. in Forest Management from Virginia Tech in 1984, and his MBA from Averett College in 1991. He worked as a forest technician co-op for International Paper in North Carolina and South Carolina from 1980-1982. Hancock worked as a co-op at the Forest Research Institute in New Zealand in 1983 and at the University of Freiburg in Germany in 1984. He joined Westvaco as a forester in 1984, was promoted to Production Logging Supervisor in 1993, Local District Procurement Supervisor in 1997, and Operations Manager in 2016. He has served as the interim Fiber Supply Manager at Covington since January 2022.

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