PIMA Past Award Winners Archive

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Past Award Winners


Announcing the 2023 PIMA Award Winners!


2023 TAPPI/PIMA Executive of the Year

The TAPPI/PIMA Executive of the Year Award is presented to a senior-level executive in the pulp, paper, or converting industries for excellence in management and outstanding contributions to the industry as a whole. TAPPI is pleased to announce that Annica Bresky, President and CEO of Stora Enso, has been named TAPPI/PIMA’s Executive of the Year.

Annica took over as CEO in December 2019, and has served as a member of the Group Leadership Team since joining the company in 2017. Before assuming her current position, she was Executive Vice President of Stora Enso’s Consumer Board Division. Prior to joining Stora Enso, she held various executive leadership positions, including President and CEO of Iggesund Paperboard AB in 2013-2017 and Managing Director at BillerudKorsnäs AB from 2010-2013.

2023 PIMA Student Leadership Award

The PIMA Student Leadership Award winner is Isabelle Ownby.

Isabelle (or Izzy as she is known) will be graduating in May from Western Michigan University with a double major in Paper and Chemical Engineering and a minor in Mathematics. She is an incoming Applications Engineer with Axchem USA. While at WMU, Izzy served as both treasurer and president of TAPPI’s WMU Student Chapter. She completed internships at Greif, WestRock, and Axchem USA.

2023 PIMA Innovator Award

The PIMA Innovator Award recognizes a member of a paper, paper converting, supplier or affiliate company who has best demonstrated outstanding innovative strategies, application of technology or other means leading to improved results at their facility or enterprise. The PIMA Innovator Award winner is Dr. Shivamurthy Modgi.

A native of India, Shivamurthy grew up in the paper industry as his father worked at a paper mill. He earned a bachelor’s degree in pulp and paper science in India and later earned a Master of Science and Ph.D. from the University of British Columbia in Canada. Over his career, he has held various positions including process engineer, shift supervisor, production manager, and process engineering manager. While in India, he commissioned one of the fastest machines at the time producing LWC papers and base paper for off machine coaters. In Canada, he started up two new paper machines, and converted three machines to make containerboard. Shivamrthy is currently the Technical Quality Manager at Domtar Packaging’s Kingsport Mill.

2023 PIMA Leadership Award

The PIMA Leadership Award recognizes an individual who has best demonstrated outstanding leadership, management, and organizational skills leading to improved results for their team or company. Nominees for this award are judged on four criteria: skill in people development; application of best management practices; effective use of external resources; and change management. The PIMA Leadership Award winner is Michael Farrell.

Mike is the Executive Vice President of the Mill Division at Graphic Packaging, where he is responsible for eight paper mills, four integrated virgin mills and four recycled mills totaling 4.2 million tons of annual production.  He is also responsible for Health, Safety and Environment and Open Market sales.

Mike has been in leadership positions with Graphic Packaging for 15 years. After starting his career as General Manager of the Middletown, Ohio mill, he moved to Sr. Manufacturing Manager at the West Monroe, Louisiana mill. In 2013, he assumed the role of VP, Recycled Board Mills. In January 2018, Mike was appointed Senior VP, Supply Chain, and was promoted to EVP Mill Division in Sept 2018. Prior to Graphic Packaging, Mike worked for The Newark Group in their mill division for 13 years in Mill Management roles.

Mike holds a degree in Pulp and Paper Engineering Technology from Sault [Soo] College and a Master of Business Administration from Xavier University. He is an adjunct professor at Western Michigan University and served as the president of the WMU Paper Technology Foundation. He currently serves on the TAPPI Board of Directors and on PIMA’s Executive Committee.

2023 PIMA Division Leadership and Service Award

The Division Leadership and Service award recognizes an individual for outstanding leadership and exceptional services that have resulted in significant and demonstrable benefits to members of the awarding division. This year the award goes to Garrett Fisher.

Garrett Fisher holds a Bachelor of Science in Paper Engineering & Chemical Engineering with minors in Chemistry and Mathematics from Western Michigan University. He most recently worked as a Technical Sales Representative for Kemira Chemicals, where he supported a variety of paper manufacturing customers with reliable chemical additive programs and optimization of existing applications. He recently accepted a new position as an Assistant Project Manager at Clark, Richardson & Biskup Consulting Engineers.  Previously, he worked as a Process Engineer for Domtar Paper Company and as a Technical Service Representative for Tate & Lyle (now Primient). 

A TAPPI member since 2020, Garrett is very involved in TAPPI’s PIMA and Young Professional Divisions. He has been the PIMA Program Chair for the past three TAPPICons. He also served as host of the Young Professional Division’s “Perspectives” Q&A soft skill interviews with various industry leaders.


Outgoing Division Chair

Thank you to Kurt Mehlberg, outgoing chair for the PIMA Division (2021-2023).

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