February 16, 1960
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CLIMATITE WEATHER SEALANT
for glass is used in building construction
as in the new Compton Laboratories at
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
(above). Cushioning for the windows in
this building and many others has been
provided by Climatite weather stripping
extruded at the Fall River, Mass., plant.
A VERSATILE NEW material is Fibrocast, made
from various fibers and synthetic resins, and produced
at the company’s Magnolia, Ark., plant. The product
can be easily molded into a variety of items.
Ever since our company was founded, it has based its distribution
on its nationwide network of independent dealers. Thousands of our
dealers have built permanent and successful businesses with the Firestone
Franchise, which is one of the most progressive and most profitable in
the industry. Our distribution was extended by the addition of many
important new dealers. Firestone Stores, strategically located throughout
the United States and Canada, continued to maintain their high standards
of service to our dealers and to the public, and achieved increases in both
sales and profits.
For years our Company has called nationwide attention to the
necessity for building better and safer highways and for developing
improved programs for traffic safety. During 1959, we continued our
efforts in all aspects of highway safety by giving financial support and
by contributing the assistance of Firestone personnel.
We participated in the nationwide voluntary safety-check program
of the Inter-Industry Highway Safety Committee and sponsored vehicle
safety-checks in seven Firestone plant cities. Firestone was the first
industrial firm in the United States to conduct such a program.
* * :j«
OUR COMPANY, which has supported 4-H Club activities for many
years, has accepted the sponsorship of an extensive Automotive Care
and Safety program for 4-H Club members in 50 states and Puerto Rico.
Firestone will provide teaching materials, leader training and funds for
this program which is aimed at reducing the high rate of motor accidents
Through the National Commission on Safety Education of the
National Education Association, we are sponsoring a program to teach
driving safety in the nation’s high schools. A special part of this pro
gram was a National Student Traffic Safety Conference held last year
in Kansas City. This participation is prompted by our conviction that
the ultimate solution to our traffic safety problems lies with the youth
Our plants continued to emphasize safety in all its aspects and won
high honors for their performances. For the fiscal year our plants com
piled a safety record of only 1.4 injuries per million man-hours worked,
a decrease of 12.5 percent from the previous year’s rate. This frequency
rate is 50 per cent better than the rubber industry average for 1958.
Our Gastonia, North Carolina, plant earned the Award of Honor of
the National Safety Council.
In the Safety Council Sectional Contests, six of our plants won
First place Awards in the Rubber Section. Two of our plants won the
top award in the Textile Section.
INDICATING that safety performance is on a continuous basis,
three of our plants won the Award of Honor, three the Aw'ard of Merit
and six the Certificate of Commendation from the National Safety
Council for improvements in their safety records on the basis of a three-
Five of our Akron plants won first place in safety competition
among all the rubber companies operating in Summit County.
We extend our appreciation to the men and women in our plants,
offices, stores, warehouses, branches, and plantations throughout the
world^ for their contributions toward making this the greatest year in
the history of our company.
Many of these people have long service with us. In our Akron
plants, for example, the continuous service records tell us that 90.4 per
cent of all employees have five or more years of service and 34.5 per cent
have 20 or more years of service. On the basis of all domestic plants,
including the newer factories, 74.3 per cent of all employees have five or
more years of service and 14.7 per cent have 20 years or more. Certainly,
this is a convincing indication that our people feel that the Firestone
organization is a good one with which to be associated.
Our Military Service Bureau keeps in contact with Firestone
employees who are on leaves of absence while serving our country in the
Armed Forces. This year we sent 210 Christmas gift boxes to those in
4: * *
A TOTAL OF 45,670 men and women of Firestone and 108,015
dependents are now protected by our employees’ group insurance plan
which, for the year, paid out a total of $8,219,941. Of this amount,
$1,320,400 was in death benefits, $5,679,210 was in hospital and surgical
benefits, $1,146,381 was in disability benefits, and $74,000 was paid for
Firestone employees in Akron contributed 1,664 pints of blood to
the Red Cross, bringing the total amount of blood contributed by Akron
employees to 13,400 pints since the program was initiated in 1952.
Firestone employees in other plants are also participating in this impor
tant national program.
During the fiscal year 1959, a total of 10,171 suggestions was re
ceived from employees in our factories and offices. Of these suggestions,
2,423 were adopted, for which awards of $49,389 were paid.
Youth activities are encouraged by all Firestone plants. Our Com
pany continued to cooperate with and support such youth organizations
as the Future Farmers of America, the 4-H Clubs, the Boy Scouts, Girl
Scouts, YMCA, and YWCA.
A wide variety of recreational activities for employees in Akron,
and in other plant cities, was continued through the year.
* * *
THE FIRESTONE Scholarship Program provides financial assistance
to worthy sons and daughters of Firestone employees who seek a college
education. Since 1953, when the program was inaugurated, 168 scholar
ships have been awarded. At the present time, 98 scholarship students
are in attendance at 67 colleges and universities. Several students each
year have received high honors and were elected to honorary scholastic
groups. Because of their excellent work, many of these students have
been awarded fellowships for advanced study in graduate and professional
schools. Several scholarship students who have graduated have accepted
positions with Firestone.
In addition, we give substantial support through annual contribu
tions to fourteen foundations of independent colleges in areas where
the Company has a plant or a concentration of employees. We also
contribute to the United Negro College Fund. It is our desire to do our
part in helping to preserve, the private colleges and universities of the
country which do not receive state or federal aid.
We encourage education among our employees by promoting ad
vanced training through day and evening undergraduate and graduate
courses. Our Company reimburses employees in the amount of tuition
and fees for studies undertaken at accredited colleges up to a maximum
of three credit hours per term upon successful completion of such courses.
The courses taken must have some relation to the employees’ assignment
or be in fulfillment of requirements for degrees.
The year 1959 marked the 35th anniversary of the ,Firestone
College Training Class. Since 1924, more than 3,000 have received on-the-
job training and experience in sales, research, production or finance,
depending, on the work, for which they showed special aptitudes. Over
the years, these college classes have provided many of our Company s
executives and key personnel.