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Company History

In the 1950s, John W. Heaton was a mechanic working at the Owens Corning’s fiberglass facility in Anderson, South Carolina.  He spent most of his nights making replacement items for the company on a contracted basis.  When Owens Corning announced its new facility in Aiken, South Carolina, John moved there and started a new machine shop, Precision Machine Works.  During the 1960s, PMW grew in its core market, the fiberglass industry.  In the 1970s, John’s son, Charlie, joined the company with a vision of adding CNC machining capabilities.  With this evolution, PMW expanded into new industries as a precision parts manufacturer. Third generation Ashley Heaton became Chairman and President in 2002, and by 2015, PMW was certified for both ISO9001 and AS9100.  In 2019, following a highly successful project in the space industry, PMW established its current state-of-the-art facility in Liberty, SC to support customers in the Aerospace, Defense, and Medical Device industries.

In 2021, PMW Aero formed a strategic partnership with Banbury Private Capital to augment the leadership team and expand its network of trusted, value-adding industry partners.

PMW Aero is supported by an operationally focused management team of industry veterans.

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Ashley Heaton

Ashley is the Chairman and President of PMW Aero. He received his BS in Business Administration and Management from The Citadel, also known as The Military College of South Carolina. He has over 25 years of manufacturing and operating experience. Since joining PMW in 1995, Ashley has been integral to growing the company by expanding capabilities and diversifying the customer base of the company his grandfather founded in the 1950s. Ashley led the establishment of PMW Aero in Liberty, SC with best-in-class manufacturing capabilities and a staff focused on the processes, quality, and procedures required to be successful in these highly regulated industries. 

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Bill McLendon

Bill is the CEO at PMW Aero. He has over 30 years of experience in the aerospace & defense industry and has held multiple CEO and C-level positions.  He has provided Congressional liaison services for the National Air Transportation Association, and worked closely with the International Civil Aviation Organization on simulation technology.  He oversaw operations at some of the largest aerial terminals in the world for the Department of Defense, led technical services for a chain of private jet aircraft, and oversaw key ground support for major airlines at the nation’s busiest airports.  He has led large organizations, including product development, engineering, manufacturing, and services for the high-tech 5th generation aircraft. Bill received his BS in Engineering Mechanics from the US Air Force Academy and attended Oxford University, England, as a Rhodes Scholar receiving his BA and MA in Politics, Philosophy, and Economics.

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Phil Quist

Phil is the COO at PMW Aero. He has over 25 years of experience in multiple programs and operational leadership roles in the aerospace & defense business. Phil is also Vice Chairman of SeaTec Consulting and is an Operating Partner at Banbury Private Capital, an aerospace & defense-focused private equity firm. Phil has led major aerospace integration programs encompassing technology program development and implementation, business processes, and organizational redesign. Phil was VP of Operations and Business Development at Louis Berger Services and was responsible for the integration of maintenance information technology systems for a major US airline and the US military. He has also led technology engagements for several national brands. Phil studied Computer Engineering at Clemson University and later served as a faculty member.

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Dan Sims

Dan is the VP of Business Development at PMW Aero. Dan has over 25 years of experience in leadership roles in aerospace and defense manufacturing. Dan has specific expertise in operations, sales, product development, manufacturing, operational excellence, program management, and aftermarket. Most recently, Dan was an Aerospace Industry Consultant at his own firm, DN Sims Group where he had multiple engagements with Aerospace manufacturing companies, investment firms, and economic development entities.  Previously, Dan held multiple senior leadership positions at Triumph Group including President of a Triumph operating company and Corporate Vice President responsible for multiple operating companies. Dan received his BS in Industrial Engineering from North Carolina State University.