Tommy Nobis Center Provides Cleanroom Job Skills for Disabled
By SUSAN ENGLISH
Atlanta, GA–The Tommy Nobis Center (TNC), a private, non-profit community rehabilitation program named for the Atlanta Falcon`s former all-pro football linebacker in recognition of his leadership and support for the disabled, was recently awarded a community block grant of $100,000 to build a cleanroom.
The new cleanroom will provide specialized vocational training for the 500 youths and adults with disabilities serviced by TNC. “We applied for the grant after we realized there was a market there and we started looking,” says TNC Marketing Manager Martha Moore. “We realized we couldn`t build this cleanroom until we knew what project we were going to do. We found out quickly there was a lot to learn…CleanRooms East had these seminars, and we thought this is just what we needed before we built the cleanroom.” (CleanRooms magazine sponsored both Moore and Peggy Rogers, TNC vice president/operations, to come to CleanRooms East `95 in April to attend the seminars and talk to vendors.)
TNC has already secured a government contract for medical device packaging in a cleanroom environment and hopes construction of its new cleanroom will lead to more long-term, big volume contracts in this and other industries. Packaging is something TNC personnel have already shown they can do well for both government agencies and private industry. The TNC`s 39,000 ft2 warehouse is set up for fulfillment, assembly, and a variety of other tasks, as well as packing and packaging. It is equipped with five loading docks, forklifts and other material handling equipment for handling large volume output.
Because TNC`s warehouse space is not air-conditioned, recirculation of air is of utmost importance in the Atlanta heat. A modular wall configuration is presently being considered as an option. Moore admits that $100,000 sounded like a lot at the beginning, but she now realizes the money will have to be spent very wisely. They can`t be sure of securing additional grants for cleanroom furnishings, so Moore and Rogers have pretty much decided to put most of their money into up-front construction with upgrades or repairs to be applied for in the future. n