Beth Mullen, unit manager in purchasing for Honda of America Mfg. Inc., with responsibility for material service operations at the Anna Engine Plant, recently addressed a weekly meeting of the Sidney Rotary Club.
She said that Honda was established in 1948 in Japan and started its first plant in the United States in 1959. Since that time, the company has spread across the United States and has factories which produce cars, motorcycles, all-purpose vehicles, power equipment, robots and jets. Honda opened its first factory in Ohio in 1982. The first car produced in Ohio was a Honda Accord, which rolled off the line at the Marysville plant in November 1982. Since that time, Honda has opened four plants in Ohio, including the one in Shelby County. The company employs nearly 9,500 people throughout Ohio.
The Anna Engine plant opened its doors in 1985, Mullen said. The plant has grown from 100 associates into an operation which employs more than 2,800 people. The plant annually produces more than 1 million engines a year. Honda’s philosophy is attributed to two principles: respect for the individual and the three joys.
Respect for the individual enshrines the concept of fairness and equality in every Honda operation around the world, Mullen said. “A diversity of ideas and talent is the backbone of what makes our team great. Everyone brings something unique to the table. And collectively they provide a product that fits our diverse customers. The three joys outline a trio of essential experiences that any individual can expect to enjoy as a member of the Honda family: joy of buying, joy of selling, joy of creating. Together they form our spiritual guide and moral compass. They inform our every decision, practice and objective and ultimately make working here both professionally rewarding and personally fulfilling.”
Honda is also very active in the community. The company has donated more than $96 million back into Ohio communities since 1979. Honda has helped many local agencies recently, including the United Way, Relay for Life, the Sidney-Shelby County YMCA and New Choices. The firm encourages employees to give back and also helps them do so. The priority is given to projects that promote cultural enrichment, respond to the social needs and priorities of communities and stimulate advancements in safety, diversity, youth education and the environment.