A career spanning four decades brings vast knowledge and experience
Valley Forge & Bolt, manufacturer of hot-forged industrial fasteners, is proud to welcome Rick Bailey to the company as chief metallurgist. Throughout his more than four-decade career, he has specialized in steel, the core component of Valley Forge products. Bailey will apply his scientific and technical knowledge as well as his leadership abilities to Valley Forge’s continued growth as the top supplier of fasteners and custom critical joint solutions.
Bailey will be involved in numerous levels of the organization, with an eye on maintaining efficient, high-quality processes. His responsibilities include creating product formulations and purchasing steel; production planning; advising on forging and heat-treating; expanding employee understanding of product functions; and assisting with quality controls.
“My strength is in treating product creation holistically—taking raw materials and carrying them through forming, machining, and heat treating to get quality levels that customers need,” said Bailey. “My role is to turn science into practice, applying the technical side of metallurgy to improve processes. And to embrace continuous improvement so we’re always learning and better serving our customers.”
Bailey has vast prior experience serving the mining, power gen, and oil and gas markets, giving him intimate knowledge of three of Valley Forge’s core markets. He is invigorated by the opportunity to work on products that include the company’s proprietary Load Indicating Technology. “Often with Load Indicating Technology, we’re making huge bolts for heavy applications, where it’s crucial to start with material that has the correct properties so the finished product calibrates properly,” said Bailey. “I’m really happy to be part of an organization that’s making innovative, high-value products.”
“We’re extremely fortunate to add someone with Rick’s experience to the Valley Forge team,” said Michele Clarke, CEO. “He’s seen and done just about everything in steel metallurgy, and has developed a true passion for fasteners and solving customers’ issues with their critical joints.”
Bailey began his career with the venerable U.S. Steel and transitioned to the fastener side of the steel business with Massachusetts-based Olympic Manufacturing Group. Bailey’s wife has roots in Arizona, making his move to Valley Forge a homecoming of sorts.