IOI Staff


Industrial Opportunities, Inc. is a non-profit corporation governed by a board of directors.  The board meets quarterly and receives interim reports from the president.  The President has been given authority to manage the day-to-day operations by the board.

Officers  2015-2016

Randy Wiggins Cherokee Co. Manager
Murphy, NC
Lee Ferguson South Wire Coleman Cable Manager
Murphy, NC
Vice Chairman
Tom O'Brien
Industrial Opportunities, Inc.
Andrews, NC
Roger Holloway
Industrial Opportunities, Inc.
Andrews, NC

Board of Directors 2015-2016

IOI recognizes the need to have representation on its governing body from a broad cross-section of the community, representing various community interests. This is taken into consideration when recruiting new members for the Board of Directors.

Matt Rogers
Retired Principal
Hayesville, NC
Rick Davis
Retired School Superintendent
Robbinsville, NC
Geneva Foster
 Retired Academic Advisor
Hayesville, NC
Andy Cable
Graham County E.D.C Director
Robbinsville, NC 
Josh Carpenter
Cherokee Co. E.D.S Director
Robbinsville, NC
Jack Faulkner 
Retired Colonel
U.S. Air Force
Andrews, NC
Fannie Watson 
Retired Social Worker
Hayesville, NC
Paul Worley
TCCC Business Outreach Services
Murphy, NC
Jo Crowe
Appalachian Land Co.
Murphy, NC
Greg Nazerian
Snap On Tools
HR Manager
Murphy, NC

If you would like to Contact our Board of Directors please call (828) 321-4754 or use the Contact Form at left to contact us.


Tom O'Brien, President, Industrial Opportunities, Inc.Tom O'Brien, President/CEO

President/CEO operates and manages the total programs of operations; this includes operating a manufacturing business to provide work and appropriate conditions to prepare clients with disabilities, disadvantaged or displaced workers for employment or vocational placement. Tom has been with IOI since 1974. He has a BS/BA degree in sociology and has been President of IOI since 1980. Tom has extensive knowledge and experience in developing budgets and management. He has an extensive repertoire with community leaders, government officials and other similar non-profits organizations. He has served on the Economic Development Board of Cherokee County since 1999 as chairman. He serves on the Board of Murphy Medical Center since 1986 and the Cherokee Chamber of Commerce. MARC President -Elect 2009-2011.


Roger Holloway - Chief Financial Officer - Industrial Opportunities, Inc.Roger Holloway, Chief Financial Officer

CFO is responsible for Financial Statements, budgets, 401K Administrator and all banking activity. Roger has been employed with IOI since 2005, but has over 25 years of manufacturing experience acquired from Emerson Electric, Stanley Furniture and CR Brown Enterprises. He also has 3 years of additional non-profit government experience as Cherokee County Finance Officer. Most positions have been in his strength of accounting and finance, but he has held other positions such as Operations Manager, Superintendent and Plant Manager. Roger experience has been very valuable in the analysis of product costing and the degree of detail of analyzing situations has been most beneficial to the direction and goals of the future growth of IOI. He earned a BSBA from Western Carolina University in 1980 concentrating in Accounting and Finance.


Harry Baughn - Consultant for Commercial and Military Products and Services - Industrial Opportunities, Inc.Harry Baughn, Consultant - Commercial and Military Products and Services

After serving at IOI for the past 37 years as Vice President of Marketing and Production, Harry Baughn retired August 22, 2014. Harry will continue to serve as a consultant for commercial and military products and services. While working for IOI, Harry oversaw the Elastic Products Division or the production part of the IOI business and served as 2nd in command upon the President's absence. He also served as the Board of Directors Secretary.

Harry has been with IOI since 1977 and has a BS degree in psychology and sociology as well as an MA in Counseling. Serving as vice-president and marketing representative, since 1979 Harry has help grow the business model from scratch to roughly a $10 million dollar manufacturing facility.


David Kemper - Vice President of Sales and Business Development - Industrial Opportunities, Inc.David Kemper, Vice President of Sales and Business Development

David Kemper has worked with IOI and its sister companies since 2005 in roles ranging from business development, product development and engineering to advocacy and fund raising. He has strong, technical and hands-on business experience identifying opportunities, creating effective and efficient business programs, and overhauling and repositioning business processes. Prior to working with IOI, David had 20 years’ management experience in engineering, manufacturing, program management, sales and marketing in both international and domestic markets, and businesses ranging from $13 million to $200 million in revenue.

He has worked extensively in the textiles, military aerospace and military protective equipment industries. He has held leadership roles in multi-organizational collaborative ventures, ranging from two-company joint ventures to 85 company/12 national laboratory industry-wide R&D collaboratives to supply-chain efficiencies for a Fortune 500 Tier One Automotive Manufacturer.


Joe Gibson - Operations Manager - Industrial Opportunities, Inc.Joe Gibson, Time Study Engineer/Costing Analyst

Time Study Engineer/Costing Analyst is responsible for performing time studies & establishing & reviewing products cost. Joe has a degree in Business Administration - Entrepreneurial from Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, North Carolina. While going to school he also worked as a Special Project Manager at IOI. He was responsible for costing out new lines for military products, Government contracts and for purchasing equipment and setting up and starting the new products. Joe has earlier experience as Plant Manager at VF Jeanswear, Andrews, NC; Resident and Area Engineer, Levi Strauss & Company, Rock Island, TN; and Plant Manager at Washington Manufacturing Company, Milan Shirt Plant.


Shannin West - Human Resources Manager - Industrial Opportunities, Inc.Shannin West, Human Resources Manager

Shannin has been with IOI since 2002. Prior to employment with IOI, Shannin worked at District Memorial Hospital for 12 years as the business office coordinator. She graduated from Mars Hill College in 1989 with a BS in mathematics and she is also certified in secondary education. Shannin plans and carries out policies relating to phases of personnel activity. Recruits, interviews, and selects employees to fill vacant positions. Plans and conducts new employee orientation to foster positive attitude toward company goals. Maintains record of insurance coverage, pension plan, and personnel transactions, such as hires, promotions, transfers, and terminations. Investigates accidents and prepares reports for insurance carrier. Conducts wage survey within labor market to determine competitive wage rate. Meets with supervisors to resolve personnel issues. Writes separation notices for employees separating with cause and conducts exit interviews to determine reasons behind separations. May keep records of hired employees characteristics for government reporting purposes. Performs varied and highly responsible administrative work. Requires extensive knowledge of the organization and programs. Relieves President of administrative details and office management functions. Assists with Board of Director's functions, editing the newsletter, and public relations.


Susie Cook - Quality Manager - Industrial Opportunities, Inc.Susie Cook, Quality Manager

Quality Manager is responsible for maintaining the Commercial Sewing/Production Quality Management system. Susie has been with IOI since 1986. She began as secretary and later was promoted to the Administrative Assistant/Human Resource. She has been involved since 1993 with purchasing, quality, contract reviews, writing work instructions per drawings and specifications and record retention of government contract orders. She has been Quality Manager since 2002.



Phyllis Burke - Medical Products Division (MPD) Quality Assurance Manager - Industrial Opportunities, Inc.Phyllis Burke, Medical Products Division (MPD) Quality Assurance Manager

MPD QA Manager is responsible for maintaining the Quality system over the MPD Division. Phyllis has been employed with IOI since 2006, and has over 15 years previous manufacturing experience. Work history includes purchasing, inventory control and shipping/receiving clerk, customer service, production and quality assurance. Phyllis has an associate's degree from Southwestern Community College.

Lynne Manning - Director of Rehabilitation Services - Industrial Opportunities, Inc.Lynne Manning, Director of Rehabilitation Services

Director of Rehab Services is responsible for the oversight of all of our rehab programs and supervising directly or indirectly 25+ staff. Lynne has been with IOI since 1989. Her previous work history includes working with people with developmental disabilities, mental disabilities and substance abuse in various settings. She has helped IOI achieve and maintain national accreditation through CARF (Commission of Accreditation in Rehabilitation) since 1994. She maintains our state licensure, Medicaid enrollment and monitoring from our Local Management Entity. She has a B.A. in Therapeutic Recreation and a M. Ed in Agency Counseling. She is a Certified Vocational Evaluator and a CARF surveyor.

Dennis Myers - Work Adjustment Coordinator - Industrial Opportunities, Inc. Dennis Myers, Work Adjustment Coordinator.

Work Adjustment Coodinator oversees the Vocational Rehabilitation sponsored Evaluation and Work Adjustment Programs. This includes in-house training, job placement and job coaching services. Dennis has been with IOI since 1990. He has a BS degree in mathematics. Since being at IOI, Dennis has been, first a job coach and now oversees the Vocational Rehabilitation Program. Dennis has worked on preparing quotes for potential contract work and has participated in Elastic Products marketing activities on an as needed basis. He has also represented IOI on several community and regional agency boards, including county transportation advisory boards, Workforce Development Board, Regional Youth Council and the Disability Employment Awareness Committee.

Chris West - Maintenance Manager - Industrial Opportunities, Inc.Chris West, Maintenance Manager

Maintenance Manager  is responsible for overall maintenance of facility and machinery. Chris has been with IOI since 2003. Prior to being promoted to Maintenance Manger, Chris was hired as Machine Maintenance Supervisor. He has over 20 years in mechanical and maintenance experience. Chris' responsibilities also include parts inventory, overseeing electrical, heating/cooling units, and calibrations for MPD division. He has attended numerous continuing education training and re-certification workshops throughout his employment at IOI.


Jim Maennle - Project Manager - Industrial Opportunities, Inc.Jim Maennle, Project Manager

Project Manager provides technical training to adults with disabilities, supervisors, & IOI employees in a production setting and ensures production schedules. Jim has been with IOI since 1992. He began as a job coach in the North Carolina Vocational Rehabilitation Program at IOI. Jim worked directly with adults with disabilities on job training both at IOI and at a competitive employment site. His main job responsibility was job training and job placement. He has been acting as project manager of the Government Contract Division since 1999.


Jeanette O'Dell - Design and Development Manager, Cutting Manager, Time Motion Analyst - Industrial Opportunities, Inc.Jeanette O'Dell, Design and Development Manager, Cutting Manager, Time Motion Analyst 

Jeanette has been employed since 2003 with IOI. She has over 30 years of valuable manufacturing experience acquired from Owenby's Mfg., Peachtree Indus., Lee Co., and IOI. Jeanette's experience in a variety of positions with each company includes: sewing machine operator, trainer, supervisor, Gerber cutter, and project manager. Jeanette does the costing of new products as well as most samples for the products costed; along with the time studies for all products in production. Jeanette is the manager for the automated cutting (Gerber) department, web cut department, and oversees the computer aided design (Accu-Mark) activities. She is also part of the internal audit team and a member of the safety committee here at IOI. Jeanette earned her Associate Degree in Business Administration from Tri-County College in 2003.


Patricia Lennex - Operations Manager - Industrial Opportunities, Inc.Patricia Lennex, Operations Manager

Patricia Lennex is the Operations Manager and newest member of the IOI team. Overseeing all aspects of the manufacturing division, Pat brings to IOI many years of production experience. From being Operations Manager at a Body Armor manufacturer to being the President of PACA, a producer of military apparel, Pat is well versed in mil-specs, all aspects of sewing production, and military proposal writing.




Cyndi Sloan, Sales Representative

Cyndi has been with IOI since 2006 when she took over EP Rigid Web Sales. She has an associate’s degree in computer systems technology. Cyndi works for the Elastic Products Division of IOI. Elastic Products is the sole licensee for MOSSY OAK and REALTREE camouflage patterns printed on webbings. Cyndi coordinates all aspects of the sale of printed webbings, including the development of the licensed patterns. The camouflage printed webbings are provided to licensed customers who in turn manufacture finished camouflage products, such as dog collars, treestand harnesses, rifle slings, straps, arm guards, to name a few.


Our goal is "People Working for a Better Future with quality products, services and customer satisfaction."

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