Rockingham County Welcomes New Manufacturer

Rockingham County, NC (May 26, 2020) – Earlier today, Governor Roy Cooper, announced Rockingham County’s newest corporate partner, Ontex Group.

“Following the previously-announced decision to invest in manufacturing in the eastern part of the country to complement shipments from abroad, we are proud to announce the forthcoming opening of Ontex’ first U.S. production site,” Ontex CEO Charles Bouaziz said. “With this meaningful step we accelerate the execution of our strategic priority to increase our U.S. presence.”

Ontex is a Belgium born company that specializes in the manufacturing of disposable hygiene products including adult and baby diapers, as well as feminine hygiene products. With manufacturing facilities currently located in 16 countries, this will be their first in the United States.

Located in Rockingham County’s newest industrial park, Carroll Industrial Development’s, South Rockingham Corporate Park, the Ontex project will bring $96 million in new capital investment along with 403 jobs.  “We are excited to add Ontex to our industrial base and look forward to a long-term partnership ensuring their success,” stated Leigh Cockram, Rockingham County Economic Development Director. “This announcement is not only a great opportunity for job expansion in our area, but also solidifies that Rockingham County, including the South Rockingham County Corporate Park, is positioned well for future growth.”

For more information please contact Tara Martin, Economic Development Marketing Manager at


Workplace Restart Expands to Seven Triad Counties

Workforce Board provides Free Faces Masks and Covid-19 Health Trainings

Kernersville, North Carolina, May 18, 2020 – Today, May 18, 2020, the Piedmont Triad Regional Workforce Development Board opened the Workplace Restart initiative to Caswell, Davie, Forsyth, Rockingham, Stokes, Surry, and Yadkin counties. Workplace Restart provides up to two Nightingale Face Masks and COVID- 19 health training to local employers and their staff. Previously this initiative was only available in Forsyth County. Small and midsize local businesses should visit today to submit an interest form.

The PTRWDB’s purpose in providing comprehensive Covid-19 health training, designed exclusively for Triad workplaces, and protective masks, manufactured in the region, is to get businesses open and people back to work while ensuring the health and safety of our communities. As of today, the initiative has provided over 6,000 masks to local businesses in the region.

“Many of our employees did not have access to protective items during this pandemic. This will certainly go a long way to keep our employees and our workplace safe from Covid-19. We are appreciative of the Piedmont Triad Regional Workforce Board for the wonderful initiative” said Jeremy Robinson, Controller at Thermcraft, Inc. The Workforce Board provided Thermcraft over 100 masks last week after completing the Covid-19 health training.

To participate in the Workplace Restart initiative, employers should visit, submit a registration form, and a team member from the PTRWDB will contact you, after completion of the courses the masks are distributed to employers based on product availability.

Piedmont Triad Regional Workforce Development Board (PTRWDB)

PTRWDB is a division of the Piedmont Triad Regional Council (PTRC). PTRWDB serves the counties of Caswell, Davie, Forsyth, Rockingham, Stokes, Surry and Yadkin. The mission of PTRWDB is to assist the development of the regional workforce to meet the needs of employers now and into the future. Members of the board include representatives of PTRC, regional employers and community colleges. PTRWDB oversees local area NCWorks Career Centers and NextGen Youth Program and are a part of the state and national Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act system. For more information about PTRWDB, visit

Citizens for Economic Development Secures Additional Funds for Rockingham County Micro-Businesses Grant

Rockingham County, NC (May 18, 2020) – Rockingham County Citizens for Economic Development is excited to announce additional funds were secured to offer micro-businesses in Rockingham County grant funding.

Announced in April, Citizen’s for Economic Development (CED) in collaboration with Rockingham County Economic Development, developed a grant package for Rockingham County mico-businesses, defined as businesses with less than 10 full-time employees. The response was overwhelming, proving a greater need for support to Rockingham County’s small, local businesses. 

After much collaboration with Rockingham County businesses and organizations and with extreme generosity, additional funds were received from Truist (BB&T Bank), HomeTrust Bank, Leadership Rockingham (GoFundMe project), Eden Rotary, Reidsville Rotary, Reidsville Area Foundation, Madison-Mayodan Rotary, The Wright Company, and Sylvia Grogan. The additional funds were dispersed to several businesses which previously applied for the grant and will serve as a supplement to assist with rent/mortgage, employee support (salaries, insurance, paid leave), utilities (i.e. electricity, phone/internet, etc.), purchase of COVID-19 supplies for business protection/cleaning, expenses associated with marketing, and such.

A total of 84 grants were dispersed to Rockingham County micro-businesses, with priority given to those businesses directly impacted by the Governor’s Executive Order issued March 23, 2020.

“We are overjoyed with the outpouring of support from our Rockingham County colleagues and partners,” said Leigh Cockram, Rockingham County Economic Development Director. “Although we realize the need is still great, it is our hope that these grant funds soften the blow COVID-19 has had to those businesses who have been forced to close or to operate at limited capacity.”

For more information, questions, or for ways to help, please contact Tara Martin, Economic Development Marketing Manager at


Local Industry Donates In Demand Items During Time of Countywide Need

Rockingham County, NC (May 11th, 2020) – Hand sanitizer is in short demand, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Health experts, including the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO), recommend using an alcohol-based sanitizer to prevent the spread of COVID-19, in addition to washing hands thoroughly with soap and warm water.

To help the local community meet the demand, Henniges Automotive of Reidsville, used supplies on hand to produce their own, using the CDC and WHO’s guidelines. Through their production, they have the capacity to produce approximately 500 gallons of hand sanitizer. Over the last week, Henniges has donated 200 bottles of hand sanitizer as well as 1,000 face masks they had in excess to Rockingham County Government. The sanitizer and masks will go to Rockingham County agencies such as Public Health and Emergency Management Services, who are the County’s frontline heroes in the fight against COVID-19.

“It is such a blessing to have industries in our community that are willing to lend a hand in the time of a crisis like Henniges,” stated Lance Metzler, Rockingham County Manager. “This shows a true commitment to Rockingham County. From each of us at Rockingham County Government, we want to sincerely thank Henniges for providing much-needed hand sanitizer and masks for our employees and clients.”

When the need to sanitizer became apparent, Chris Eckhardt’s, Henniges Automotive Reidsville Plant Manager, desire to keep his employees safe prompted him and his team to research what it takes to make their own. They quickly realized, many of the ingredients outlined by the CDC and WHO, were ones on hand at the plant. After production started, the supply Eckhardt and staff were able to produce went much farther that what was needed for Henniges employees; this lead them to reach out to the surrounding community, especially those on the frontlines, to assist those whose need outweighed their supply.

“All of us at Henniges Automotive are proud of our first responders, essential workers, and our community,” stated Eckhardt.  “It gives all of us a great deal of satisfaction to be able to give back and support anyway we can.”

The Henniges team plans to produce and donate approximately 500 total gallons of hand sanitizer over the course of the next few weeks, including 50 bottles which will donated to Rockingham Community College.

For more information, questions, or for ways to help, please contact Tara Martin, Economic Development Marketing Manager at