Spirit of Maine Achievement Award Recipient
Derek McKenney ’14 was honored with the Spirit of Maine Achievement Award, which recognizes an individual who has graduated within the last 15 years and has achieved outstanding professional, scholarly, public, and/or entrepreneurial success. During the last two years, McKenney, senior manufacturing engineer for Puritan Medical Products, spearheaded the effort to help his employer expand rapidly to meet the demand for medical swabs created by the pandemic. McKenney led the transformation of an abandoned manufacturing facility into a clean room that produced five million COVID swabs each week. Once it was operational, he conducted additional work to refine the process and machinery to increase the facility’s output. He embraced the challenges, coordinated with his colleagues, and successfully addressed the critical need in a short period of time.