In the late 1960s, Dave Dickens Sr. was working as a sales representative for a brass mill in Connecticut. When the mill’s president thought Dave’s commission should be reduced, Dave decided it was time to strike out on his own. The David D. Dickens Company was formed.
Eventually becoming Three D Metals, the company has seen significant growth and is celebrating 50 years in 2022. While we may have grown exponentially, Three D Metals carries on the family legacy and values we started with.
Keep reading to learn more about the growth of our company and our people.
Looking Back on Three D Metals’ Growth Over 50 Years
Today, as Three D Metals celebrates 50 years, we continue to operate as a family-owned business, with the company carrying on the Dickens family legacy.
“I was with the company for 37 years — maybe 40 if you count my junior high years — and every day, the people, the experiences we’ve had with our friends, customers, clients, suppliers in the business, I enjoyed every day,” said David Dickens Jr., who served as president and CEO after his father retired.
He credited Three D Metals’ family values as contributing to the company’s growth over the years.
“We took Mom and Dad’s core values into account with everything we did,” said Dickens Jr. “From there, we listened to our team, our customers, our suppliers, and came up with ‘what’s next?’”
Now, Dickens Jr.’s brother-in-law, Chris Berry, is the company’s current CEO and president, taking over the role after Dickens Jr. retired in 2020. Like his predecessor, Berry worked his way through the organization, witnessing the growth of the company along the way.
“It’s been an incredibly fun and at times challenging journey,” Berry said. “For me it’s been very rewarding, at least in my 33 years with Three D Metals, to see the growth of our people.
“Because as a company grows, it provides opportunities for advancement for our people. That has been very rewarding for me personally to see our people continue to grow within the company.”
The History of Three D Metals
In 1972, Three D Metals was born after Dave purchased a slitter, which is used to cut metal into different widths, and leased a small building in North Royalton, Ohio. Dave drove sales, his wife Donna took care of the books, and a family friend ran the machine and did maintenance.
Over the next 20 years, the business continued to grow, eventually acquiring Paxam Metals in 1988 to serve Canadian customers. The company, a large steel supplier, also came with a copper line to produce coils.
A year later, Three D Metals started offering our renowned proprietary edging process. As the years progressed, Three D Metals outgrew numerous buildings, eventually opening our Valley City, Ohio, headquarters in 1997.
With the growth came expanded product offerings. We added oscillate in 1999, aluminum coils 10 years later in 2009, and copper bars, rods, and sheets to our everyday stock items in 2011. 2011 was also the same year we built the turbine at our headquarters.
In 2016, Three D Metals acquired Williams Metals, which further enhanced our product offerings and added additional locations across the country. A few years later in 2020, we expanded our product range of nonferrous metals down to .002 to service the cable wrap industry.
“The biggest benefit of working at Three D Metals for me is the people; working with great motivated people in a family-oriented atmosphere.” — CFO/VP of Finance Steve Switaj
Celebrating 50 Years in the Metals Industry
Watch this video to take a look at Three D Metals’ history and growth. You’ll hear from our employees as we reflect on the past 50 years and some of our favorite memories of working here.