Many school districts, governments, and businesses across the nation that give out diploma covers or autograph books to deserving kids can trace those items back to a Long Island-based company called Foster-Gordon Manufacturing Corporation.
“We manufacture custom diploma covers and separate autograph albums for schools, universities, corporations, and municipalities,” Lauren Gordon, president of the company, told the Press. “All across the United States and some international clients as well. But we also did work for Nassau County and Riverhead in the past.”
This family-owned company makes all of its products in its 9,000-square-foot facility in Bohemia.
It was founded by Bob and Alberta Gordon, Lauren Gordon’s in-laws, in 1967.
According to Lauren, Bob had worked for a larger diploma-making company — the kind that offers senior packages that come with cap and gowns, ribbons, and other graduation products.
“He said to himself ‘I think I can make these,’” Lauren Gordon remembered. “He went around Brooklyn and Manhattan, and started finding glue, paper, ribbon manufacturers — all the things that go into this — and he started the company with my mother-in-law. They pounded the pavement and made schools their clients.”
Bob and Alberta Gordon built this company from the ground up — neither of them had formal training in design or art.
They had met working as a copy boy and copy girl for the long-gone New York Herald Tribune.
Foster-Gordon started in Brooklyn, but then moved out to Long Island when Bob and Alberta did so.
They had a facility in Hicksville for a number of years before moving to their Bohemia location.
Foster-Gordon’s Current Status
During graduation season, Foster-Gordon can have up to 25 employees.
Year-round, it has roughly four employees, many of which are longtime workers who fit in with Foster-Gordon’s theme as a true mom-and-pop shop.
“Our floor manager stays year-round,” Lauren Gordon said. “He’s 63. And he’s worked with us since he was 16. And our seasonal employees usually come back every year — they just enjoy working here.”
Lauren Gordon is owner and president of the company, while her son Danny Gordon is the president of operations.
“Being the third generation to take the reins of Foster-Gordon, there is always a lot of pressure to continue in my family’s footsteps and carry on our family name,” Danny Gordon told the Press. “A lot of sacrifice was made to get here and it’s something I do not take for granted. Having been around for over 55 years, a lot of amazing relationships have been forged over the years with not only our customers, but our incredible employees, who we consider family. Our company was founded on the mission of providing high-quality products and exceptional customer service. That mission remains today, maybe more so than ever as technology has brought us closer to our customers than ever before.”