April 09, 2020

Winslow mill prepares for end

WINSLOW — As the Kimberly-Clark Corp. prepares to close its mill here, one third-generation mill worker predicts a new buyer will be found for the plant.

“Where there’s a buck to be made, Kimberly-Clark will jump on it,” said 25-year veteran employee Maureen LeClair. “I believe the mill will be sold. I would go back. I actually enjoyed shift work.”

Mill manager Marc Keefer is currently working with a skeleton crew of 20 people.

“It’s incredibly quiet — it’s very eerie,” Keefer said Wednesday. “We’re buttoning up and turning off lights. It’s very depressing to see a place that was alive and active go cold and dark.”

In November, Kimberly-Clark officials announced the Winslow plant would close by the end of the year. The mill terminated 120 workers last summer, 138 last month and 138 this month.

Keefer and his crew will remain at the mill until the end of February, and another 51 will remain in the boiler house and environmental department, according to Wendi Strong, a spokeswoman at Kimberly-Clark’s Dallas headquarters.

Strong said Wednesday that the company had no word on its search for a buyer. “There’s no news to share on that front,” she said. “I haven’t heard anything.”

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