There's a new general manager at Sunnyside's CanAm Steel. There is also a transition underway from manufacturing joists to structural steel.
Ron Long is the new general manager and said the transition has been anticipated for more than a year.
He started working for the Sunnyside division of CanAm Steel in August of last year with the knowledge that he would take the helm upon Roger Roudebush's departure.
Roudebush recently moved to Missouri to take over at the company's plant there.
"He's planning to retire in a couple of years," Long said of Roudebush.
In the meantime the company has wanted to shift its focus from manufacturing joists, which are in less demand now, to structural steel, which has maintained a steady market.
Long grew up in the structural steel industry.
"My father and uncles own their own structural steel company," he said, stating his roots are in Lodi, Calif.
Long grew up in the family business and in 1989 took on a position with SME Steel in Salt Lake City, Utah. He worked for the company for nearly 25 years, working his way up through the ranks.
A couple of Long's former employees left SME Steel to work for CanAm, two of whom work in Sunnyside.
Long said he heard positive things from those individuals.
"CanAm is in a good market that will support structural steel," he said.
An opportunity to work for CanAm presented itself and Long found himself interested in the job.
He said the company wanted to become more diversified and his expertise lends itself to helping the company meet that goal.
For him, Sunnyside is a good place. He said he likes the people with whom he works each day and he likes the company.
Long said he has been working in Sunnyside for more than a year to make the transitions smooth for everyone.
"This is a good place to be," he said.