The patents and processes behind Filtrex, Inc., were pioneered some 60 years ago by PER Corporation's president, Russ Hobson. He was a giant in liquid and solid separation at the time, and he developed the regenerative Flex-Tube element, the original applications of which were focused on the dry-cleaning industry (filtering carbon tetrachloride and perchlorethylene). Following the success and wide acceptance of the regenerative concept, it was recognized that it could be extended into other applications and industries.
One of the potential innovations in the aqueous-filtration field was developing a small-footprint, highly efficient filtration system. At the time, the predominant technology was relatively slow, sand filtration, which required large amounts of square-footage per application rate.
Following the initial research and development efforts, our first listing was applied and approved under old NSF Standard Number 9 in 1964. The regenerative process was fully embraced in the current "Extended Cycle" series of filters. PER Corporation had a broad range of success in both the dry-cleaning and aquatics markets. An industrial filtration line for commercial application was subsequently introduced.
It was at this time that Vincent A. Pisani (our founder) was brought in from the Detrex Corporation of Oklahoma City, OK. He added structure, design engineering and marketing focus to PER Corp's efforts. In 1969, Russ Hobson lost his partner and chief financial officer, and he ended up liquidating the company in 1970. The aquatics division, both commercial and residential segments, was sold to Hayward Corporation. Vince handled the transfer and took a position as general manager of the aquatics division of Hayward. While there, he was instrumental in developing the very popular, residential EC series of filters. After several years, Hayward made the decision to spin off the commercial segment of the product line. The assets, design and copyrights were transferred to Vince Pisani and Filtrex, Incorporated, was established in 1974.
The company was run out of his own home for ten years, with his wife Anne serving as secretary and treasurer. Alongside several other engineers on staff, Vince developed Filtrex's Integrated Filter Controller to maintain cleaning schedules and media-regeneration on larger models, and later extended its application into the smaller filters with the MOD I Automated Filter Controller. In 1984, "Stretch" models were added to increase the system capacities of our smaller filters without compromising floor space.
Kenneth A. Bergstrom was brought on as senior engineering supervisor in 1988. With 15 years' experience in electronics systems, he was responsible for completely digitizing the filter controller without moving parts. The MOD I "Solid-State Controller" furthered convenience by making troubleshooting easy and by reducing energy usage and replacement costs. When Vince passed away in 1997, the company was purchased from the Pisani family by the Bergstrom Group, consisting of Ken and several other employees.
Ken served as president of Filtrex, Inc., for almost 25 years, applying his expertise in engineering and fluid dynamics to continue to improve the filters' efficiency. In addition to the MOD I SSC retrofits over the years, he instated the use of Variable Frequency Drives to control the speed of pumps and fans rather than by way of throttling valves, and he integrated them with the filter controller when needed. Beyond the technical advancements, he took part in the National Sanitation Foundation's joint committees in creating new standards. His salesmanship helped to establish our presence in the international market, and his commitment to customer satisfaction has built a reputational example for us to follow in his absence.
With Ken's unexpected passing in Sept 2021, Ronald R. R. Neugold has now joined Filtrex as president. Utilizing a background developed in leadership roles among respected Fortune 500 companies and private equity firms for over 30 years, Ron is bringing focus to our dependability for ongoing product quality and unmatched customer service. He is dedicated to improving filter designs, streamlining processes, and simplifying the procurement of materials to both reduce vendor/parts complexity and lower finished costs.
As we progress forward, we pledge to:
Filtrex, Inc. - going and growing strong!