Jostens moving jobs to Bedford from Kansas

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Jostens has announced that it will move the manufacture of diploma covers from its Topeka, Kan., facility to Shelbyville.

The company has not announced the potential number of jobs created or saved in Shelbyville, but about 83 full-time and seasonal positions in Topeka are affected by the move.

Earlier this year, Jostens announced that it would be transferring customer service functions for graduation accessories out of Shelbyville to Owatonna, Minn.; the company transferred diploma customer service from Shelbyville to Owatonna in 2010.

Jostens spokesman Rich Stoebe released this statement about the change:

"Jostens will be transitioning the manufacture of graduation diploma covers from [its] Topeka, Kansas, facility to its Shelbyville, Tennessee, Graduation Products facility.

This transition will allow Jostens to take advantage of improved technologies, innovation and workflow efficiencies, as well as to continue to improve and integrate delivery and quality of products for the benefit of schools and students.

"Jostens is in discussion with the union regarding the effects of the transition on employees at the Topeka facility covered by a collective bargaining agreement who will be affected. Approximately 83 employee full-time and seasonal positions located in Topeka would be affected by such transition."

The Topeka facility is the only unionized Jostens factory within the company, according to a report by KSNT-TV in Topeka, published on its Web site, The Topeka factory employs over 400 full-time and seasonal workers.

Middle Tennessee Industrial Development Association, in its April 2011 data sheet on Shelbyville and Bedford County, lists the Jostens plant here as having 440 employees. The company's employment tends to be seasonal, tied to the school year, as students order products for their graduations.

Jostens, founded in 1897, produces a wide variety of recognition products for schools and business, including yearbooks, diplomas, announcements and class rings. The Shelbyville plant celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2010.