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Grainger Everyday Heroes: Sports Flooring Director

6/30/20
Grainger Editorial Staff

Jason Gasperich, Director of Sustainability for Connor Sports, knows he’s helping communities by providing a safe surface for kids to play on. See how Connor Sports takes rough lumber and cuts it into flooring strips to make basketball courts all over the world. It is also a zero-waste facility that takes wood waste and transfers it to boilers to heat the facility. 

Connor Sports has been around for a few years. We were founded in 1872, so we're a little better than 140 years old. In fact, we were making flooring before the game of basketball had even been invented. My name is Jason Gasperich, I'm the Director of Sustainability for Connor Sports. [We primarily do] basketball courts, but we do a few other things [such as] racquetball courts, aerobic areas, but primarily basketball.

We're going to go into the flooring mill where we take all the rough sawn lumber that you see stacked up here behind us. We make flooring strips out of it, about 27,000-square-feet per day. We're going through a process where we sort the boards. They're cut down to narrower widths to suit the width of the flooring that we're manufacturing. A board moves through in a matter of minutes from start to finish. We manufacture about 27,000- square-feet of flooring on an average day. A typical basketball court uses about 6,000 square feet so on an average day a little more than four basketball courts are manufactured in the plant.

Our company is rare in the sense that we're a manufacturer that's a certified zero-waste company where we take the knots and the defects in the boards, even the sawdust, and transport it to a silo here on the plant property. We have large boilers that are fired by that [wood waste] and that steam is used to reheat the facility.

Every day brings something new and different that's exciting. I don't know what this afternoon is going to bring, and I don't know what tomorrow is going to bring. One thing I can be sure of is that my day is always going to bring [about] the ability to help someone or some group. [We are] ensuring that kids are going to school and now have a safe place to play on after school. [We want to make sure] they have a facility that they can practice in [so they will have] opportunities for scholarships. Not only do we get to see our products used on TV in games, but we have the ability to to help our community and [other] communities all over the world. That's a really great part of my job.

The information contained in this article is intended for general information purposes only and is based on information available as of the initial date of publication. No representation is made that the information or references are complete or remain current. This article is not a substitute for review of current applicable government regulations, industry standards, or other standards specific to your business and/or activities and should not be construed as legal advice or opinion. Readers with specific questions should refer to the applicable standards or consult with an attorney.

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