Terry W. Secrest

Operations Manager

International Paper Co.

Pine Buff

Terry W. Secrest

Terry Secrest has moved rapidly up the ladder at the Pine Bluff Mill after starting to work for International Paper Co. in 1986. In May, he was named operations manager, responsible for the day-to-day management oversight of all operations.

He attributes his quick rise to his ability to deal with people. "Our greatest asset is our talented workforce," Secrest says. "I've been able to communicate with them in such a way that they can understand. In that way, I can get them to help figure out how to solve any problems."

Secrest, 35, says he puts people first and tells them the truth, which results in satisfied workers and satisfied customers.

He is secretary of the executive committee of the board of directors of the Greater Pine Bluff Chamber of Commerce and also serves on the board of the Arkansas State Literacy Council. In addition he serves Immanuel Baptist Church in Pine Bluff as a deacon and on the budget and stewardship committee.

Under Secrest's leadership, the mill has set record levels of production. While the chemical engineering graduate of Louisiana Tech University expresses surprise at how fast he's risen in the ranks, others see his talents, such as the ability to recognize problems early and communicate so all will understand, as making him a prime candidate for future mill manager.