about icafe inc.
ICAFe’s story starts in Milwaukee, WI with a man named Harry Goldsmith. During World War II, Goldsmith saw an opportunity to provide specialty chemicals to local businesses that were involved in the manufacture of products for the war effort. He founded Harry Goldsmith & Associates, and in 1947 hired his first associate—Alex B. Dziedzic. The two worked together for three years, and in 1950 Goldsmith sold the business to Alex, and the company became Alex B. Dziedzic & Associates.
In 1955, Alex hired Clifford Hemmer, a school teacher and former U.S. Army colonel with a background in chemistry. In 1960, Ralph Treske was hired by his father-in-law, Alex, to join the company. Ralph had a background in business as well as manufacturing gained as part of a rotational internship program with Caterpillar, Bucyrus, and Nordberg.
Alex B. Dziedzic & Associates relocated to a building in Wauwatosa, WI in 1960. Quickly having outgrown the space rented above a waffle house, the operation was moved to a much more suitable building a few miles east. It was during the mid-to-late ‘60s and ‘70s that the company started to become more involved in the industrial coatings marketplace.
In 1976, Alex sold all of the company stock in even proportions to Clifford and Ralph and remained a director until he retired in 1979. That same year, the organization was renamed to more accurately reflect the business that the company conducted. Clifford toyed around with several names for weeks until settling on Industrial Chemical and Finishing Equipment, Inc. (ICAFe, Inc.). The ‘e’ in ICAFe is written lowercase as a play on the chemical symbol for iron—Fe.
As ICAFe progresses into the 21st century, the company continues to evolve by virtue of offering world-class industrial finishing solutions, forming respectful and meaningful relationships with clients and suppliers, and providing process support by a committed and innovative staff.