Glenn Pacchiana is a lifelong learner.
As the President & CEO of Thalle Industries and Corbet Scientific, this native New Yorker has the innate ability to evaluate market change in products and services in collaboration with his employees. His successful collaborations have allowed both of his companies to thrive.
Care for the Environment
Thalle Industries is an environmentally responsible supplier of high-quality virgin and recycled aggregate, asphalt products and brownfield fill for the construction industry. Its Virtual Quarry™ has been in operation since 1997 and its recycled products undergo the most rigorous environmental tests, allowing their use as Clean Fill for environmental remediation projects.
Located in Elmsford, N.Y., the Virtual Quarry™ produces recycled aggregate products in the same way a conventional quarry produces aggregates; however, at the Thalle industries Virtual Quarry™, employees do not drill and blast the raw materials. Instead, the Virtual Quarry™ accepts materials from demolition and excavation projects, such as asphalt, concrete, and rock, that would normally be shipped to a landfill for disposal. Employees then separate, screen and crush that material to make recycled aggregate product, essentially taking a waste product and converting it to a usable product that protects the environment by taking trucks off the road and reducing landfill waste. Thalle’s location as the only quarry in extremely dense Westchester County, N.Y. is also conducive to safeguarding the surrounding environment by preparing affordable and locally recycled products for use in nearby construction projects.
Quarries are heavily regulated, requiring permits and public input to grow or expand. Mining companies typically face off with environmental groups and neighbors in courts for years in expensive public processes. Thalle has taken a different approach, building coalitions with the environmental community and identifying common goals to advance the ideals of the quarry and numerous environmental groups. In turn, Thalle has been acknowledged by several environmental groups for the company’s collaborative spirit, including:
Tech Protecting Crops
Corbet Scientific discovers and develops solutions to enhance crop production while limiting agriculture’s environmental impact. Its first product is a water-based agriculture adjuvant called Hydrovant. An adjuvant is a substance that increases the efficacy or potency of the pesticides or fertilizers with which it is combined.
Hydrovant is an Environmental Protection Agency-approved inert ingredient that is extremely rain fast. Hydrovant increases fertilizer or pesticide efficacy by sticking the active ingredient to the plant or soil keeping it where it belongs. For example, Hydrovant keeps a fertilizer or pesticide’s active ingredient on plant leaves or in the root zone of the soil after wetting events such as dew and rain. Hydrovant is non-toxic and it works with both contact pesticides and systemic pesticides (contact pesticides work by contacting the pest and system pesticides work when the plant absorbs the pesticide). As Hydrovant adheres the active agent to the leaf, it allows the plant time to absorb the pesticide into its system.
Glenn first discovered the technology when it was being used to help citrus greening in Florida. “Most groves had very little fruit on them but the adjacent groves using the product (now known as Hydrovant) had large & full grapefruits,” he says. “I knew the product worked in that moment. I then became a shareholder in the company and began testing the product in California. Receiving the first efficacy test was eye opening, and I knew this technology was unique.”
Hydrovant’s technology results in more efficient applications, higher efficacy, and a lower environmental impact.
“Getting new products adopted by the agricultural industry is a long process. The agricultural industry has a typical three-year sell cycle. The first year, you go through testing so that a grower/distributor will meet with you. The second year, your distributor will do his own testing with the product to see if it works in their region. The third year, the distributor gives the product to a grower to do his own testing to see if the product will work on their crops,” explains Glenn. “To get a grower to ultimately buy the product, you need to walk them through these steps and help them to see the benefits they receive by using Hydrovant. Fortunately for us we have never had a grower that disliked the material.”
With every new study, Glenn and his team find more doors opening. The “Corbet Chemistry” is unique because it adheres a substance to a surface. The product can also adhere an active ingredient to wood, stucco and stone, or to skin. “We have developed a soil-applied product and are in the process of rolling out an irrigation aid to help farmers use less water.” says Glenn. “We believe that Hydrovant’s rain-resistant quality and its ability to hold the active ingredient in place for a sustained period of time will allow us to focus on a number of other industries as well. This is a very unique technology that has applications in high-volume, low-margin industries, as well as low-volume, high-margin industries.” The technology is so unique that Corbet Scientific is obtaining patents in 38 countries and it currently has patents issued in the United States, Australia, Israel, Colombia and Ukraine.
Tests of Corbet Scientific’s adjuvant have yielded promising results.
A test at the Non-Radioactive Isotope lab at Cornell University showed that when Bifenthrin was sprayed on corn with Hydrovant and subjected to rainforest conditions,45% more Bifenthrin was on the leaf after 30 days.
When an insecticide with and without Hydrovant was applied to leaves, the leaf WITHOUT Hydrovant reduced the insects from 25 bugs per leaf to 19 bugs. The leaf WITH Hydrovant reduced the insects from 25 bugs per leaf to 4 bugs.
When Hydrovant was added to fertilizer in a drip irrigation system, the production of cucumbers rose from 22,000 pounds per acre to 43,000 pounds per acre.
A test in Argentina showed that using 50% of a weed killer with Hydrovant provided twice the weed control as compared to the weed killer alone.
Building Customer-Oriented Companies
Thalle Industries prioritizes consistency in responding to customers with thorough, holistic, expert guidance around all their needs. The goal is to provide value throughout the client’s project cycle so that Thalle customers can be more profitable and stay on schedule.
“We are Rockstars who provide Rockstar Service, Rockstar Response, and Rockstar Supply, which makes us Rockstar Heroes!” says Glenn, who coined these initiatives.
The Rockstar concept has four components:
Glenn’s workforce development efforts have earned Thalle recognition as an employee-focused organization that was named one of the Best Places to Work in Westchester County. The Briarcliff Manor, N.Y.-based company promotes individuals, helps develop their skill sets, and works with employees to design and make products that serve many different types of customers. Thalle emphasizes the importance of recognizing the abilities of each individual and enabling them to meet expectations they never imagined. Thalle’s priority is moving people forward, making a better life for every employee and their customers.
One of Glenn’s practices is supporting budding entrepreneurs both inside and outside of the company. Internally he provides resources to help employees learn about and develop themselves by providing resources in executive coaching, leadership courses, industry councils/training, computer skills classes, and health and financial wellness initiatives.
“An employee who had been at Thalle for a few years decided to launch a landscaping business during COVID to supplement his family’s income,” said Glenn. “I supported this employee’s initiative by hiring this new company to provide landscaping services at Thalle’s Fishkill location.”
Mentoring budding entrepreneurs is important to Glenn.
“There was a skilled carpenter who had been hired for various odd jobs around Thalle. I sat with this individual and educated him on the importance of a proper business structure; protecting his assets and family by establishing a business entity; business insurance; and standardized forms. I even assigned a Thalle employee to work with this individual to create standardized business forms, which the carpenter uses today,” said Glenn
Glenn prioritizes self-evolution by seeking executive support from many professional organizations that have helped him grow as a leader. For many years, Glenn has been part of a high-level entrepreneurial coaching program through Strategic Coach, an effort which has helped him evolve his companies and their leadership bench.
Glenn’s focus on self-evolution extends to his staff. He prioritizes engaging with his teams at annual leadership retreats, providing them with the confidence and support to advance their own evolution and initiatives. Glenn has worked with Arbinger Group, a coaching entity that has helped his employees improve their collaboration, take a greater level of pride in their work and feel happier about their many accomplishments.
Glenn’s management retreats became corporate retreats, the last one taking place this winter in Lake Placid, where 21 employees attended. The retreats balance managerial training and corporate activities to build teamwork.
“Our employees have been blessed to participate in many of these organizations to grow as individuals. To mention a few, we use Kolbe and Strengthfinder tests to identify our strengths and put employees in the right positions,” said Glenn. “Many employees have individual Arbinger training to learn to work together, and they bring the lessons they learn back to the office to share with their colleagues.”