Meet the leadership team behind Trusscore, filled with passion and driving our disruption
Executive Vice President, Corporate Development & Distribution
Chief Manufacturing Officer
Vice President of Marketing
Associate Vice President of Finance and Accounting
Director of People and Culture
Director of Research and Development
Director of Manufacturing Operations
Team Trusscore Members
Hear the stories from some of our team members from across North America, people who have built successful careers and who help us achieve our goals every day.
When Trusscore material scientist Rana Ahmad saw the job ad that would change the trajectory of her life and career, she couldn’t believe her eyes.
It was October 2021, and Rana was nearing the end of her Master of Science degree at University of Ontario Institute of Technology in Oshawa, Ontario. She knew the time had come to find a job but wasn’t optimistic of finding something that would align with her highly specialized field of study – electrochromic materials – materials that change color when they’re subjected to electrical voltage.
And that’s when she came across an online advertisement from Trusscore.
“I just laughed,” she recalls. “I thought to myself, this is exactly what I do.
“This is me.”
Today, Rana is working full-time with Trusscore’s R&D department out of the Velocity Lab at Communitech in Kitchener, Ontario as a materials scientist, and pioneering some of the most cutting-edge technology in the building and construction industry – a project to make walls change color with a swipe of a smartphone – creating, in effect, digital paint.
“This is literally the perfect job for me,” she says.
And not only has Rana been able to find an ideal career fit, she found an employer willing to support her while she finishes up her master’s degree.
“I thought it might be a big problem,” she says, of the need to finish her studies. “Instead, I’ve been supported by everyone, and able to work and finish my studies. Not many companies are going to do that for you.”
Rana is among a wave of women making their mark today in STEM – science, technology, engineering, math – fields that once upon a time were dominated by men.
At Trusscore, she says she was welcomed immediately as an integral member of the team and given a meaty, important role, one that played to her strengths and field of expertise and one that has a real-world application.
“I like working on tangible projects,” she explains. “We’re creating something that hopefully will end up in people’s hands, that people can purchase in a store and improve their lives.”
And the culture at Trusscore – respectful, flexible, and with an ingrained home-work balance – is one that suits her personality.
“I don't think that it could be a better fit,” she says. “It’s a very understanding and flexible environment. There’s an acknowledgement that work isn’t everything, and that people have personal lives outside of work. Everyone generally seems happy and without that heavy-duty stress.”
When Willer Benoit was a boy going to school in his native Haiti, he had a dream that one day he might be able to live in Canada.
Today, Willer is living his dream, as the recently promoted Supervisor of Blending in the Compounding Department of the Trusscore manufacturing operation in Calgary, Alberta.
“Trusscore is helping me grow and be happy,” says Willer.
Willer Benoit came to Canada 16 years ago, looking to transition from several years living in the U.S., and before that a career as a military policeman in Haiti. When he first arrived in Canada he spent a few months in Windsor, Ontario and then, like many newcomers to Canada had before him, he struck out for the west, looking for opportunity.
He found what he was looking for, answering an advertisement in 2007 for a “blender”, at the facility in which he now works. He has been promoted twice since he joined the company, first to lead hand and recently to the position he now holds.
Willer and his team of seven combine the raw materials that become Trusscore products. It’s a vital role, one where precision and care are required to obtain the correct mixture that ensures the products will perform the way they must.
Willer not only makes certain the blending is correct, but he is also dedicated to looking after his team and helping ensure they’re able to perform their tasks to the best of their ability. Laughter and a broad smile are among the everyday tools of his trade.
“I try every day to do my best,” he says.
And his management style? “I like to help people succeed. I like to teach and treat people the way I’d like to be treated.
“And I try my best to make others happy. No one can be happy all the time – we’re all under pressure of one kind or another, but we all can help one another.”
Willer, 55, is the father of four boys, ranging in age from 10 to 23. Trusscore, he says, has provided he and his wife with the means to raise their family and it has offered a career where he has been able to grow and one that continues to be fulfilling.
“Trusscore believed in me and of course I feel good about that,” he says, adding that he in turn “believes in Trusscore and enjoys coming to work every day.”
James Puckett’s official title is Production Coach, but he likes to think of himself the “Swiss Army knife” of the Trusscore manufacturing operation in Dayton, Ohio.
“Role-wise, I’m pretty sure there’s nothing that I don’t do,” he says with an easy laugh.
James was hired in 2019 to help establish and set up the Dayton operation. He came equipped with more than a decade of experience in polymer extrusion, hands-on experience in helping set up a new extrusion manufacturing facility, and a curiosity about how things work. He also likes improving industrial processes and helping people achieve success at what they do.
“I've always considered myself a helper of people,” he explains.
“I’m one of those people who likes to make positive change, no matter where I am or who I’m with.”
A typical day at Trusscore?
“When I come in in the morning, I’ll meet with the shipping manager, I’ll meet with the production supervisor, I’ll meet with maintenance manager. I’ll sort of see what projects everyone is working on and then try to coordinate what I’m going to do training-wise around everything else that’s going on with everybody that day.”
James is 37. He has a wife and three daughters, 15, 10, and 9, and grew up in Ohio. He entered the workforce after high school, accumulating knowledge at every place he’s worked. He learned how to turn a wrench at a company that made paper cartons. He learned about electronics and assembly line-style manufacturing at a company that made radios and amplifiers for automobiles. He learned about scaling extrusion at a company that made vinyl windows and doors.
And he learned about people at every stop along the way.
“There's something to be said about the feeling of accomplishment when you're with someone who starts out knowing little about a role,” he says, “and then you see that light bulb turn on all of a sudden.”
He’s a believer in Trusscore and what the company calls “The Trusscore Way,” a set of guiding principles about culture established when Trusscore was first launched. Prime among its tenents: Do the right thing; share knowledge; have fun; make a difference; and treat customers and fellow team members with dignity and respect.
“Trusscore is the first place I've ever worked that really cares about its people,” James says. “It doesn’t just pay lip service to the notion of caring. It invests in its people and makes certain team members know they’re a priority. “It’s something that a lot of companies say, and not a lot of companies do. With Trusscore, it’s genuine and it’s sincere, and it’s felt all the way down. “That’s the great thing about working here that stands out for me.”
When Mitch Voralek graduated from university and set out to find a full-time job, he had to additionally find a way to accommodate his rather unique full-time side hustle.
Mitch Voralek is a professional rugby player, a fullback and winger with the Toronto Arrows, of the Major Rugby League.
For more than a year, now, Voralek has worked as a mechatronics engineer with the Trusscore Research & Development team, even while juggling a schedule that involves travelling across North America with his rugby teammates, who are the only Canadian entry in the 13-team MRL. Not to mention the grind of travelling an hour or more on the 401 highway back and forth from Waterloo to Toronto for practice sessions and home games.
Led the Warriors
“It was pretty busy for a time during the rugby season,” Voralek admits. “But things have eased off now that the Arrows season has ended. I’m just now getting caught up with some of the Trusscore projects I’ve been working on.”
Voralek, 25, started playing rugby in high school, at Waterloo Collegiate Institute, and in 2016, after graduation, was invited to play for University of Waterloo Warriors, UW being the school Voralek had elected to attend due to its renowned program in mechatronics engineering.
In each of his four seasons at Waterloo, Voralek led the Warriors in scoring and was named an Ontario University Athletics all-star. He has played at the national team level with the Canada Maple Leafs Sevens national development program and, in 2019, was named Rugby Ontario’s Senior Provincial Player of the Year. All that brought him to the attention of the Arrows, who offered a pro contract in September, 2021.
Volarek's affiliation with Trusscore began when he was in university. Every mechatronics engineering student at University of Waterloo must complete a practical engineering project called “Capstone.” Trusscore, which has several UW grads in its Research & Development department who themselves were required to complete a Capstone project, meaning they were well-acquainted with what it involved, invited Voralek to work on something called “the hot knife” project. The aim was to find a more efficient, less wasteful, and energy friendly way to trim lengths of Trusscore products.
Dual career tracks
That affiliation eventually led to a job offer – but there was the potentially thorny issue of how to juggle a full-time job and a nearly full-time athletic career and make it work for everyone.
A series of meetings ensued, involving Trusscore Director of Research & Development Ryan Gerakopulos, Director of People and Culture Sturt Carter, Trusscore CEO Dave Caputo, as well as Voralek, and a flexible schedule was agreed to that suited all parties.
“During the rugby season I basically tried to work four 10-hour days,” says Voralek. “I’d keep track of my hours on a spreadsheet and if I was short hours then I’d work a vacation day or so and add in some time on weekends.”
The decision by Trusscore to find a way to accommodate Voralek’s rugby schedule reflects the company’s open-minded culture and support for all its team members – a belief that a person’s extra-curricular passions are part and parcel of what makes them unique and part of the upside they bring to their workplace each day.
“I believe that your life and your career should be an adventure,” says Trusscore CEO Dave Caputo. “And if there's a chance to intersect your life and career to make your dreams come true, you should go for it, all the time.
“Mitch, like rugby, like Trusscore products, is incredibly tough and resilient. And I like the idea that he could pursue his dreams while still being part of a Trusscore adventure. It’s a fantastic thing, and one we completely support.”
The R&D team at Trusscore is tasked with bringing material science to the company’s products – improving the chemistry, environmental sustainability, and enhancing performance in ways intended to make Trusscore products leaders in the building materials space. R&D projects run the gamut, including researching a way to change the color of Trusscore Wall&CeilingBoard with a swipe of a smartphone.
It was that range of projects and the commitment to innovation that Voralek says attracted him to the company – that and some other key attributes.
“It’s a growing company,” he says, “And I think the company has a good heart: What it's doing from the standpoint of replacing drywall and making a more sustainable alternative, that sits nicely with me, as well.”
On the rugby pitch and off, Mitch Voralek is tackling a future as an athlete and a building materials scientist. Team Trusscore is behind him for the win.