Creating fully custom pieces requires teamwork from start to finish. As a small business, we take pride in our work, and are constantly looking for ways to improve. Each of our specialized departments is encouraged to speak up when they see something that could be done better. From design to delivery, your project is cared for by a staff committed to excellence. We are one big family - and we wouldn’t want it any other way.
Meet our office team!
Dennis took over as sole owner of E.A. Dion and President at the beginning of 2021. After graduating from Husson College with a BS in Business Administration, he joined the company full time in 1983. Back then, the company was still very small and all the manufacturing was outsourced. As the Production Manager, Dennis physically travelled from vendor to vendor in order to coordinate their various projects.
One of Dennis’ most memorable projects was the “You’ve Come A Long Way Baby” key tags for Virginia Slims. The massive order (2.2 million pieces!) and tight deadline really put the company to the test. “We essentially had to reinvent ourselves just for that order,” said Dennis. Another project that came to mind was a large order for The Girl Scouts of America. The order was placed shortly before the company was set to go on vacation, and all the pieces had to ship together in one large shipment. “That sticks in my head,” said Dennis, “We had to line up the boxes. There were walls of boxes.”
When asked what his favorite part about working at the company is, Dennis immediately said the “unending change.” Being involved in the constant changes over the years instills an inexplicable pride. From personnel to production, the constant growth of the company keeps Dennis interested and excited about what’s ahead. “There’s always something new, and I really like that.” Over the years, Dennis has helped create an environment of constant improvement that has become the trademark philosophy of the company.
Outside of work, Dennis enjoys taking nature walks with his dog, biking, backpacking, fishing, and cooking. He has always been athletic, playing basketball, golf, and even Little League Baseball for one season. However, Dennis will admit with a laugh that his Little League batting average was 0-0-0.
Roland Dion is not only the youngest brother, but the youngest of all six Dion siblings. After graduating from Saint Anselm College with a BS in business in 1991, he joined the company as a purchaser. By then, E. A. Dion had moved to its current facility in Attleboro and construction was finished on the first of two additions. Roland now serves as Vice President of Manufacturing and continues to be an integral part of making sure projects run smoothly.
When asked what his most memorable project was, Roland replied with the first time we received a large order from a major sports team. The project was so immense, important, and tightly scheduled, that our employees worked 7 days a week for an entire month to get it done. Roland recalls that Memorial Day was the light at the end of the proverbial tunnel for everyone involved.
Roland is a big promoter in Lean Manufacturing and is actively leading the company in Continuous Improvement. For six years, Roland was a New England regional board member of the Association for Manufacturing Excellence (AME), and is a current board member of the New England Lean Consortium. Tapping into the shared knowledge of these oraganizations, he takes great care to make sure projects are running efficiently and on time. Roland described our process to AME saying, “Everybody’s actively touching each piece... There’s no automated process at all, where we stick it one end of a machine and it does an operation or two and comes out the other. There’s nothing like that here." With the amount of care E. A. Dion puts into each piece, Roland knows that it’s equally important to invest time and care into our employees, “We do all kinds of activities here to keep motivated and morale up. We have to because (the work) is labor intensive, so if they’re not motivated then you don’t get a good product and that’s not helpful.” Roland is rarely seen sitting down and often spotted walking the factory floor checking up on orders or at his stand-up desk.
Outside of work, Roland enjoys spending time with his wife, Karen, and kids, Maggie and Ned. He stays active all year round by hiking, mountain biking, wind-surfing, and skiing. He also serves as a Bristol Community College Advisory board member.
Melissa joined the company in 1998 when Dion (and many other companies) were starting to leverage technology for their day to day operations. Melissa’s Computer Business Applications degree and previous “Jill of All Trades” work experience were just what was needed when she was hired to implement a new ERP software package and navigate the Y2K “crisis.” Melissa’s problem solving and innovative mindset meshed well with the entrepreneurial spirit of this growing business and she has moved through various roles from IT Manager to now Senior Vice President of Office Operations. Melissa’s motto is if you find yourself thinking “there’s got to be a better way”, it’s because there is and we should find it! She embraced Lean Manufacturing and Continuous Improvement and has worked with all departments and led a number of cross-functional teams to make process improvements. She also enjoys working directly with customers, developing and integrating systems to make everyone’s work easier. Some examples of memorable customer involved projects include working with Imperial Marketing, Prime Trucking, Accolades, MDI Entertainment and Southern Glazer Wine and Spirits.
The most rewarding part of Melissa’s job is helping others develop their potential and she has been a trainer, mentor and coach to many of us over the years. She recently lead a team who hosted an onsite tour for the GBMP featuring Lean Manufacturing principles applied to administrative processes. The team developed interactive and even multi-media presentations highlighting how they use one piece flow, visual systems, JBS’s, Toyota Kata, A3, and more. The attendees’ feedback was very positive – but for Melissa, the best part was witnessing the effect this project had on the members of the team. They came from different departments and levels of the organization, but all stretched beyond their comfort zones and achieved the team goal together.
Melissa has been active with the Visual Manufacturing New England User Group, Riverside Middle School PTA, and was President of the East Providence High School PTSA for three years. She has also been involved with Junior Achievement and volunteered at countless Dion events. She was recognized with the Dick Just Award for her efforts with the Edward A. Dion, Sr. Charity Golf Tournament.
Melissa and her husband of 26 years, Jeff, are huge Disney fans and travel to Disney World every chance they get! When not at Disney World, Melissa enjoys reading, baking, and listening to live music. She has been known to sing at karaoke and even join her husband (who is a professional singer) on stage for an occasional song. She also enjoys spending time with family – both at home and especially at Disney World!
Christine Catarino recently joined the Dion team as the Marketing Director. She is an ambitious and driven Brand Marketing Strategist with proven success developing, managing and implementing communication strategies and measuring results across both traditional and digital channels. She has a unique ability for creating marketing strategies that considers the business as a whole. She also has an in-depth global perspective that fosters success across diverse international markets.
She earned her BA in International Business at Hofstra University in Long Island, NY. Since graduating, she has worked in marketing and PR for Nickelodeon Networks, Hasbro Inc., Beacon Design by Chemart Co., Newport Restaurant Group and Southcoast Health. At the beginning of her career, when someone asked her family what she did for a living, they would say she watched tv and played games for a living. She is tri-lingual as she is fluent in English, Portuguese and Spanish.
When not at work, Christine enjoys reading, travelling - both domestic and international, and watching Hallmark movies. She loves the holidays both Thanksgiving and Christmas. Her home transforms into a Christmas Wonderland every November and remains that way until the end of January.
Christine's background in marketing, specifically digital marketing and brand strategy will help steer Dion into a more digitally focused Marketing approach.
Aubrey grew up attending company outings and parties, where everyone at Dion felt like extended family. She officially joined the company in 2006 when she was fourteen (with a badge and everything!). Beginning with the packing department, Aubrey traveled around the facility over the years, going where help was needed and learning many new skills along the way. Today she is a part of Dion’s marketing team.
Aubrey earned her Bachelors and Masters degrees in theatre from Providence College and Birmingham State University, respectively. She regularly applies her theatre skills to whatever task she is performing, and enjoys exercising her creativity in the marketing department. Beginning in May 2020, Aubrey authors the monthly Dion Blog, which covers a variety of relevant business topics.
Aubrey’s favorite part about working at Dion is the family atmosphere, where everyone feels like an uncle, auntie, or cousin. She has seen the company navigate various challenges over the years, and come out stronger. By working together, constantly improving, and caring for one another, Dion has become a family legacy that Aubrey is extremely proud of.
Outside of work, Aubrey enjoys spending time her fiancé, Dave, and dog, Petunia – both of whom enjoy her cooking. She also likes to travel, and has visited Ireland, Sweden, Costa Rica, and Mexico to name a few countries. Her latest hobby is video-chatting with her friends across the country.
Steve Rullo is one of the longest tenured Dion employees outside of the Dion family. He celebrated his 36th company anniversary this past year. We sat down with Steve to find out a little more about him and what makes him so special here at Dion.
Steve started his career at Leavens Award Company (incidentally another Dion Account Manager – Dana Higginbotham – also started there). He started in the Pack/Ship area, then started full-time in the Enamel Room, where a few years later he became the Manager of this Dept. He then moved to Packaging/Quality Control.
In 1985 Steve started at Dion, where he was the first employee hired that was not a Dion family member or previous friend of the family. Steve ran production for Dion until 2006, when he moved into his current role as Account Manager.
When asked what Steve loves best about Dion, he unequivocally says it is the work culture. Dion employees have great fun with each other and both “Play Hard” and “Work Hard.” There are really quite a cast of characters here at Dion – and Steve is certainly one of them!
Outside of the office Steve has a number of interests. One he is well known for is his love of hard rock & heavy metal Bands. Steve’s first concert was Black Sabbath, and he hasn’t stopped since! He has been to approximately 300 concerts (with a guitar pick collection to prove it!). Steve is also an avid gardener – growing enough tomatoes annually to make homemade tomato sauce to last him for the entire year. His cherry tomatoes are popular give-aways here in the office. Steve has also been a regular racquet ball player for the past 25 years or so.
When asked what his most challenging jobs were throughout the years, Steve says that he has had several. When UPS changed their logo, Dion had to produce thousands of new cap badges and pilot wings for their personnel in a very short time. Another challenge was the Chrysler ring program that in some years had over 3,000 new rings and 7,000-10,000 updates.
Steve credits his success in this business to learning so much from his mentors and co-workers. Who he is today is a reflection of all of the great people he has worked with throughout the years.
Linda has been in the jewelry business her whole life, first working for The Robbins Company then moving to New York to work for The Michael C. Fina Company. In 2002 Linda was looking to move back to the Attleboro area and Dion was lucky enough to grab her on her return.
We asked Linda what she liked the most about her position. Linda replied that she works with a lot of distributors that ask her to partner with them in working with their clients. Linda is able to build with them new recognition and incentive programs unique to each company. Often times she feels like a “personal shopper” in that she is asked to find one-of-a-kind cool ideas that will excite the award recipients – not just offer up standard out-of-the-box award gifts. She works closely with our in-house design department to stretch the design envelope with new features and functionality in custom jewelry and awards.
Linda also really enjoys meeting new people at the various shows Dion exhibits at throughout the year. If you have ever spoken with Linda, you know that she is a “people person” to the extreme. She never travels anywhere that she doesn’t come back with more friends and stories!!
Outside of work, Linda is an avid golfer and master baker. She has gotten the factory to do her more than one favor with the promise of her world-famous brownies!!! She is also one of the few women at Dion to have won the Edward A. Dion, Sr. Scholarship Golf Tournament (to which the above photo is a testament). Linda’s other passion is travel. She is always looking for new places to explore and doesn’t miss a chance to visit her winter home in Florida whenever she can.
If you haven’t spoken with Linda yet, give her a call. She has a wealth of experience and will help you come up with unique ideas that the award recipients will love!
As the daughter of Past President Edward “Ted” Dion, Jr., Mallory worked summers at Dion and organized many a Dion Golf Tournament, but she did not always plan on going into the family business. Out of college, Mallory initially worked at a boutique public relations firm in Boston. After working there a few years, she realized it was not what she wanted to do with her life. As she began looking around for other opportunities, Ted asked her if she would be interested in coming to Dion. Mallory said yes – and the rest is history!
Mallory has now been at Dion full time for eight years. When asked what the favorite part of her job is, Mallory quickly responded that it is the variety. There are never two days the same, and in addition to her Account Management role, she also handles projects for Sales, Marketing, Human Resources, and more. As an Account Manager, she also gets to see a project from beginning to end – from the design creation until it is shipped out the door. Account Management is a little like working for yourself. You oversee each project you are responsible for through design, tooling, manufacturing, packing and shipping. It is a real entrepreneurial experience!
Outside of work, Mallory has always been active – enjoying skiing, traveling and reading. However, some of these plans have been put on hold this past year, as she is mom to daughter Emerson and new baby Theo!
Since she and husband Billy do not get out as much, their new favorite pastime is home cooking. They have been ordering a meal service that sends you ingredients and recipes you can cook at home. They are becoming quite the chefs!
So, next time you have a custom jewelry project, give Dion a call and perhaps Mallory can get you “Cookin’ with Gas” on it!
Missy Feetham recently celebrated her 15th year with Dion and in that time has truly been a “Jack of All Trades.” But that is no surprise, as she has been one her whole life!
Her first full-time position was with medical supply distributor Owens & Minor, where she worked in inside sales. This position was similar to her Account Manager position here, as she worked with the sales reps on the road to establish pricing, managed the order process and the lifetime relationship with the customer – handling reorders, etc.
She left Owens & Minor for a better opportunity with Laser Solutions & Systems, where she worked in sales and marketing, but ultimately worked on tasks throughout the company. She handled payroll, exhibited at trade shows and even wrote some of their technical manuals!
In 2004, Dion was lucky enough to hire Missy and she has once again worked in many areas of the company. Missy started in Customer Service, but moved to IT, then Accounting and Program Management. She is now one of our talented Account Managers.
Missy is also a proud grandmother of Juliana, who just turned three in April, and a recent “Mom” to her six month old black lab puppy Molly.
Missy is also known for being fun-loving and adventurous. Some of her recent adventures include pulling together family, friends and co-workers for a “Muddy Princess Run” in western Massachusetts and coordinating a long-weekend “Girl Trip” to Nashville with her co-workers.
So let Missy take you on a “custom jewelry adventure” with your next project.
Ruby is another of our Account Managers that has had “custom jewelry” in her blood from birth. In fact, Ruby’s mother worked at Dion while Ruby was growing up!
Out of high school, Ruby’s first job was in the fraternity division of The Balfour Company. This job actually paid for her college education.
Ruby’s then took a sidestep away from jewelry with her first sales position at Neeco Inc. where she sold desktop computers. This position taught her a great deal about sales.
However, her love of jewelry called her and she came back to work at The Robbins Company for 11 years, ultimately becoming Senior Strategic Account Manager.
She was then recruited by Masters of Design (which became part of Herff-Jones), where she ultimately became National Sales Director for the Commercial Division
Dion was lucky enough to snatch her in 2018 and make her a Senior Account Manager.
Outside of work, Ruby and her husband Robert love the outdoors, hiking and fishing (which you would never believe based on her “fashionista” appearance in the office!). She owns two pit bulls named Dakota and Bianca and is very active with local pit bull rescue efforts.
She is also the proud mother of Anthony who will be getting married soon. Ruby’s newest project, that is keeping her very busy, is preparing for the wedding!
Jill has worked in the custom jewelry industry for her entire career. She began her career working in production at Masters of Design, where she learned the many aspects of jewelry design and manufacture. She eventually moved from the production side of the business to the office side.
Jill then took some time away from jewelry to raise her two children, Kaleigh and Matt. Jill came back to the industry in 2000 when she rejoined Masters of Design (which was later bought by Herff Jones in 2009) as an Account Manager. Jill moved to E.A. Dion in 2021 as an Account Manager.
What keeps Jill interested in this industry is her love of seeing a jewelry project go from start to finish – seeing an idea become a design, all the way to it becoming a beautiful finished product. She is also passionate about creating a positive experience for the distributor throughout the process.
Outside of work, Jill enjoys cooking and gardening, spending time with her husband Rocky, as well as playing with her grandchildren. Jill’s daughter Kaleigh now lives in Seattle and her son Matt is in South Carolina with his wife and three children, Annabelle who is 7, Barrett who is 5 and Daniel who is 7 months. So, as you can imagine, Jill does quite a bit of traveling to get in her Mom and Mammy time. One thing you may not know about Jill is that she is a “gym fanatic” – actually enjoying getting her “butt kicked” by her workouts!
Ted has literally grown up at Dion. Starting back in high school, Ted worked after school doing light assembly and packaging for his father, Edward A. Dion, Sr. After high school he went on to Bryant College, but scheduled his classes in the morning so that he could work at Dion in the afternoons. Ted has only had two jobs his whole life – a paper route and his work at Dion!
When asked what some of his most memorable projects were – without hesitation he said the “You’ve Come a Long Way Baby” key tags and the Merit belt buckles. The Virginia Slims key tags were remarkable because of the sheer size of the project. Ultimately the job came in at 2.2 million pieces, and this sale alone was twice the dollar volume of the prior year in total! Talk about a company growth spurt! What made the Merit belt buckle project so unique was that it was the first project that Ted truly handled from start to finish. Although his father was there for support, the buck stopped with Ted. This also happened to be a large project (over 1 million buckles) with multiple piece parts.
Ted’s favorite part of his job is working with some of the more unique projects that come through the door. As a truly custom jewelry manufacturer, Dion often works with projects that have never been manufactured before. Figuring out how to make a customer’s vision come to life is truly satisfying. It also may not just be the physical piece that needs to work better; it could be how to make ordering more seamless, or delivery to multiple locations with multiple products work, etc. Ted said that his real passion is seeing the business thrive. No matter what business he would have gotten into, he finds great satisfaction in making it grow and become more prosperous.
Ted takes this philosophy with him in all his endeavors. Ted is extremely active in the community. He is a Board Member of the Attleboro YMCA and Board Member of Sturdy Hospital. These memberships mean a great deal to him and he spends many hours on projects to make these organizations thrive as well.
Outside of work and volunteer pursuits, Ted is very involved with his family. He also enjoys golfing, fishing and skiing. His three grandchildren, three-year old Emerson, and newborns Theo and Jackson keep him busy as well!
Ted retired at the end of 2020 to spend more time with his family, but remains available in an advisory role with the company.
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