Our History

In 1980, with two workers, Charlie and Weezie Baker opened a small direct mail and outsourcing business in their garage to begin to fill the void for high-functioning adults with disabilities in the workforce.

Over the years, Baker grew and in 1988, established a second work site in Philadelphia serving returning citizens, those with substance use disorder, and homeless adults, all of whom face extreme barriers to employment.

Today, Baker Industries has facilities in both Malvern and Philadelphia, where 200 people each year are working to rebuild their lives.

Our Mission

  • To provide work for those with the most difficulty holding jobs
  • To teach the work ethic through real work experience
  • To act as a transition step toward gaining and maintaining permanent employment
  • To help our workers reach their highest level of achievement

Program participants come from four specific groups of vulnerable adults:

  1. Those with diagnosed physical and/or intellectual disabilities
  2. Those with substance use disorder
  3. Individuals on parole or probation
  4. Homeless

Interested in joining our program? Stop by Monday through Friday with two current forms of identification.

Real Work for Real Wages

Our approach is unlike most programs and is based on paying every participant the legal minimum wage, or more.

Our program is designed to respond to our workers’ special needs while encouraging them to work hard and move on to better things. At Baker Industries, we foster in our employees the feelings of pride and accomplishment that can only come from being included in, rather than excluded from, the regular workforce.

We believe that there is no better way of accomplishing this goal than by mimicking real-world situations, allowing participants to gain the knowledge and skills they will need to lead independent and productive lives.

Meet Our Team

John H. ‘Turk’ Thacher, Jr.
John H. ‘Turk’ Thacher, Jr.President
Turk Thacher is a graduate of Princeton University and the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton Graduate Division. He has had extensive small business and nonprofit experience, and has performed corporate governance and development work. Turk joined Baker Industries in 2002.
Mike Ritchie
Mike RitchieDirector of Finance
Mike has a BS degree in Accounting from LaSalle University. He has had extensive accounting, administrative, and management experience for a variety of organizations, both for-profit and nonprofit. Mike joined Baker in 2013.
Beth Tiewater
Beth TiewaterDirector of Projects and Resources
After pursuing a career in classical music, Beth moved into marketing professional services in San Francisco. Her responsibilities at Baker include programming for participants, donor events, individual and corporate fundraising, and assisting our workers in all aspects of transition as they build new and better lives.
Doug Fauver
Doug FauverOperations Manager
Doug has a degree in Industrial Engineering Technology and broad knowledge of, and experience in manufacturing and project management, including Lean and Six-Sigma concepts, ISO9001, AS9100, and MIL standards. Doug puts his leadership and training skills to work every day as he prepares our program participants for success at Baker, and beyond.
Kim Starkweather
Kim StarkweatherPlant Manager
Kim joined Baker in 2001, with a background in production and customer service. Kim oversees day-to-day production at our Malvern facility.
Jackie Johnston
Jackie JohnstonCommunications and Outreach Manager
Jackie is responsible for our Alumni Program, which tracks participants after they leave Baker. She also executes our social media on a variety of web-based platforms, as well as Baker’s website and print materials. Jackie just recently became a Certified Recovery Specialist in an effort to better serve our participants who struggle with sobriety.
Sergio Lebron
Sergio LebronCustomer Service Coordinator
Sergio came to Baker Industries in October 2002, while in a residential treatment facility in Philadelphia. Sergio started on the assembly line, became a supervisor, and then advanced to shipping & receiving. Recognizing his value to Baker, Sergio was asked to join the staff. Today, Sergio holds the position of Customer Service Coordinator.