Hi, my name is Rita Whitlock and I am President of EPM, Inc. I have 2 beautiful daughters and an amazing son-in-law and I am the proud grandmother of 5 wonderful grandchildren who keep me more than busy. I enjoy spending my weekends at the lake and traveling every chance I get. I have been teaching the grandkids how to fish this summer and love to see the excitement on their faces when they finally get a fish on the end of their line! My family truly is the light of my life!
My husband, Jerry, and I were married in 1974. By 1978 I was pregnant with our second daughter, Jerry had been working in the sealing industry for nearly 5 years and we decided to start our own seal company out of the basement of our house. We set up a small office and he hit the road visiting every industrial business in Georgia he could find. It didn’t take long for us to outgrow our basement and in 1979 we made the move to Hapeville. During this time I was able to stay at home with our girls. Jerry was always very supportive of my role as a wife and mother. When our 2 daughters started school I began working part time with Jerry to help grow the business. Together Jerry and I worked to grow the company and by 1992 the business was nationwide with over 300 employees. We soon tired of the demands of corporate and the effects it was having on Jerry’s health so we sold the company and decided to live life at a slower pace for a while. However, it wasn’t long before our old customers were contacting us wanting to buy seals from us.
We started EPM, Inc in 1995 out of our home and with the help of modern technology (a fax machine) and Industrial books and magazines we let our customers and other potentials know that we could help them with their sealing needs. By the end of 1995 we were able to purchase our first seal making machine and begin manufacturing seals to our customer’s specifications.
Unfortunately in 2009 Jerry passed away. The seal industry lost a great mind that day but his wisdom lives on in his valued employees and family. I am still running the business just as if Jerry was still here with the help of our two daughters and several loyal employees.