Oral Histories

Interview of George Gregory

Chair and CEO of Products Research & Chemical Corporation (PRC).
Entrepreneurship, Quality, and the Products Research and Chemical Corporation
Interviews not in a series, part one
Biographical Note:
Chair and CEO of Products Research & Chemical Corporation (PRC).
Hathaway, Neil D.
Gregory, George
Supporting Documents:
Records relating to the interview are located in the office of the UCLA Library's Center for Oral History Research.
Regents of the University of California, UCLA Library.
control of PRC and formation of Chemseal Corporation; winning customer loyalty; contract bidding procedures; preferred-supplier contracts lead to higher-quality products; invention of two-part, polymer sealants; sealant Gregory develops proves superior in industrywide sealant test; PRC products win acceptance at Lockheed; slipshod quality-control tests in aircraft industry; designs a chromate-cure sealant that will resist jet fuels; PRC begins to dominate the industry; PRC suffers from industrial espionage; navy-air force rivalry and the politics of the aircraft industry; fuel leakage problem of B-36 bomber prototypes; boom-and-bust nature of the aerospace industry; industry's resistance to change; sealant testing; restrictions on PRC's profits during the Korean War; changes in government procurement; becomes unofficial consultant to the navy and air force; inspection and zoning problems; challenge of opening foreign markets; licensing agreements; PRC pioneers international licensing; licensing versus direct exporting; relationships between licensing agreements and patent regulations; Leslie Misrock; PRC's research and development program; creating a small, democratic laboratory; power struggles within PRC; PRC's decision to make public stock offering; PRC acquires Sarma Company; reflections on junk bonds and the downfall of Michael Milken; business ethics; functioning of a free market economy; necessity for social welfare programs; PRC buys into the seat belt industry; PRC buys and then sells Chem-Electro Research at no profit; negotiates the sale of Kathryn Schien's PRC stock; acquisition of Semco Company; acquisition of K. J. Quinn and Company; origin of PRC's employee stock ownership plan; core technology research and new products; building PRC's Mojave plant; personal sacrifices a business career demands; Gregory selects Dean Willard as his successor; fending off an employee union; PRC's own employee groups; management council; resigns from PRC's board of directors; PRC's evolving corporate strategy; acquisition of Coast Pro-Seal; creation of the UCLA George Gregory Graduate Fellowship in Chemistry; impact of the Environmental Protection Agency and the Occupational Safety