Three Paths on a Shared Journey 

April 30, 2024

GOEX Corporation is a custom plastic extruder that makes several different grades of plastic sheet and roll stock that customers transform into thermoformed parts for medical device packaging, food packaging, and printed collateral for the print-on-plastic industry.  

According to the company website, “We believe our employees drive how we deliver value to our customers. GOEX takes pride in providing a rewarding, challenging and safe workplace. We proudly promote career advancement and professional development for all employees.” 

In this installment of The FLiP Files, you’ll meet three young plastics professionals who can assure you that GOEX keeps that promise. These are young professionals who also support and seek to contribute to the goals of PLASTICS.  

“Plastics are an easy target, and ignorance drives the attack of them,” said Amanda Cunningham,  Vice President of Medical & Graphic Sales. Our job is to provide education and data to show why they are used, how they are used, and show the lower environmental impact that plastics have when compared to their alternatives.” 

Drawing on her own professional experience, Amanda added, “Plastics are essential and were created to serve so many critical purposes! People don’t realize that it’s plastic that keeps medical devices sterile for surgery, it’s plastic that minimizes food waste, it’s plastic that allows signage to withstand the natural elements and not have to be replaced as frequently.” 

Diving in and driving sales 

As mentioned above, Amanda Cunningham is Vice President of Medical & Graphic Sales for GOEX, supporting the company’s customers and markets for Medical Device Packaging and Graphics/Print-on-Plastics. She gets a lot of satisfaction from the contribution her work makes. “I think we’re all at risk of literally not living without sterile packaging for medical procedures,” she shared. 

Originally referred to the industry by a friend, Amanda said she “dove in and never looked back.” She went on to explain that momentum, saying “I always tease that the plastics industry draws you in, but it’s true. There are so many talented people in the industry that inspire me and keep me motivated to do my job better.  The professional community and collaboration are great!” 

The industry has affected her personally, as well. “When I’m in the stores, I pay attention to things like signage, menus and gift cards,” she said. “And I’m constantly looking at packaging to see what material was used, who made it, et cetera.”   

Amanda is quick to recommend the plastics industry to anyone of her generation seeking a rewarding career. “A career in plastics provides a technical, challenging and rewarding path,” she said. “Being a piece of the puzzle that contributes to maintaining sterility and protecting patient safety is very rewarding and is a constant reminder of how important plastics are.” 

Finding shared values 

Inventory Process analyst, Dakota Bunts, handles inventory accuracy, inventory system functionality, and sourcing of both recycled PET and general-purpose PET materials.  

“Out of college, I was seeking a reputable company headquartered near where I grew up, as I was already looking towards getting married and starting a family,” he said. “I really wanted to maintain those small-town values and found a company that truly emulates them.” 

As for the industry itself, Dakota is hoping more, young career-seekers will follow his lead. “I think someone from my generation should consider a career in plastics because it really is a strong and vibrant industry” he said. “There is so much potential for growth and development within and across the industry along with opportunities to work with some truly great individuals.” 

Has anything about him changed since coming to the plastics industry? Dakota shared, “My friends and family would likely tell you it’s my lecturing them regarding plastics recycling!”

Watching things take shape 

Mark Davies is a GOEX Process Engineer who creates new processes and monitors both new and old processes for potential improvement.  

Coming to the plastics industry from the construction field, Mark was searching for more regular hours and opportunities for growth and wants other members of his generation to know he found what he was looking for. “The plastics industry offers multiple avenues for career advancement and educational opportunities,” he said. 

Asked what he likes most about being in the industry, Mark said, “Taking a raw material and making it into a product that you see outside of work.” He also appreciates having learned how to better handle recycling in his personal life. 

What’s one plastic item Mark couldn’t live without? The widely popular Red Solo Cup! 

Career development through PLASTICS 

As employees of GOEX, all three of these young plastics professionals can avail themselves of the resources of The Plastic Industry Association’s (PLASTICS) Future Leaders in Plastics (FLiP) initiative for professionals under the age of 40.  

“I joined FLiP a few months ago,” said Amanda. “FLiP has provided a nice way to network with like-minded professionals and has offered opportunities to collaborate both individually, and professionally on several levels.” 

Dakota echoed Amanda’s enthusiasm. “I was lucky enough to join FLiP just ahead of the 2023 PLASTICS Fall conference, and it’s already been a great experience,” he said. “I really enjoy the Book Club events as well as seeing all FLiP does to support the FLiP membership and communities at large.” 

Mark’s involvement with FLiP is even more recent than that of his colleagues; he is looking forward to delving into the same rich experiences Amanda and Dakota currently enjoy.