Hamilton Roddis

403134hroddisBHamilton Roddis served as Secretary, President and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Roddis Plywood Corporation for more than sixty years.

Hamilton Roddis was born in 1875 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and moved to Marshfield with his family in 1894 when his father invested in and assumed the direction of the Hatteberg Veneer Company. Mr. Roddis enrolled in the University of Wisconsin-Madison Law School in 1896 intending to proceed through a normal course of study. A fire destroyed the Hatteberg Veneer plant in 1897 and Hamilton Roddis remained in Marshfield to help get the new plant running smoothly — simultaneously, by independent study, he pursued his second-year law program by studying at night. He later rejoined his class in Madison and graduated on schedule. His capacity to operate on many functional levels served him well during the ensuing years in meeting to the many challenges of the business world and at the same time maintaining an active involvement in civic, church and cultural affairs. Originally intending to enter the law profession, he was instead persuaded to join his father’s firm (then known as the Roddis Veneer Company), he became president in 1920 and headed the company until his death in 1960. His character and intellect combined with his imaginative and progressive leadership spurred a business success through what we would today tout as Quality Management.

The Roddis enterprise spearheaded many innovations in forest products. It was the first to recognize the potential of the flush door and manufacture it on a large scale. During WWII it produced materials for the war effort by fabricating interior woodword for the Liberty ships and aircraft plywood for the British Mosquito bomber and the reconnaissance plane. In August of 1960 the Roddis Plywood Corporation, with holdings throughout the U.S. and Canada, was merged with the Weyerhaeuser Corporation.