Phoenix Cement Company is a regional supplier of portland cements, gypsum, and fly ash products. Based in Phoenix, Arizona, the company began operating in 1959 when American Cement Corporation constructed a plant in Clarkdale, about 100 miles north of Phoenix. Having won the contract to supply low-heat cement for construction of the massive Glen Canyon Dam, American Cement decided to build a new plant in Northern Arizona with the intention of dismantling it after completion of the project. As work progressed, new projections of growth in Arizona led the company to continue operation of the plant, and eventually expand it in 1962. Thus, Phoenix Cement Company was born.
While Phoenix Cement has always kept its name, it has changed ownership through the years. From 1971 to 1979, the company was a division of Amcord, a large producer of cement, coal, and other construction materials. In 1979, Gifford-Hill purchased the company and operated it within its family of cement plants. In 1987, Phoenix Cement was purchased by its current owners, the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community.
Over the five-plus decades of Phoenix Cement's existence, it has undergone many changes. Upgrades in almost every phase of the cement operation have led to great improvements in quality, production, and safety. In 1999, Phoenix Cement's Clarkdale plant was rated the safest plant in North America, with almost 8 years no lost-time, accident free operation. The fly ash operation, with multiple sources and distribution points, has become an increasingly large complement to the cement business. The Verde Gypsum Mine was purchased in 1998, giving Phoenix Cement an assured, local source of raw material.
Today, the company has completed a major modernization project that has changed the face of the Clarkdale operation. With new, state-of-the-art kiln and milling systems, Phoenix Cement is well positioned to meet the challenges of the construction industry. A new, enterprise-wide information system also improves the accuracy and timeliness of information exchange. Yet with all of this change, the employees and their families are still reminded where Phoenix Cement started, and how it got here. With a constant focus on the customer and a philosophy of continuous improvement, the next five decades promise to be as exciting as the last.