Experienced Combustion Team

Rockford Combustion Solutions has the applications expertise to solve any organization’s most complex combustion challenges. Our combustion safety solutions are high-quality, energy efficient and faster-to-market.

Robert Sanderson, P.E.
Mr. Robert Sanderson P.E., Director of Business Development, is a registered Professional Engineer with an excess of 25 years of industry experience. Under his leadership, Mr. Sanderson will expand the Rockford Systems industrial safety portfolio into fuel and thermal safety fields. Prior to joining Rockford Systems, Mr. Sanderson started his career as the primary thermal and applied process expert for a global corporation that built automotive and aerospace assembly plants. Subsequent to that, Mr. Sanderson continued as an industrial combustion and emissions technology specialist for a Fortune 100 company. Mr. Sanderson has assembled a world-class combustion safety team with capabilities covering the initial sale, through engineering and manufacturing, and concluding with installation, service and post-sale support. Mr. Sanderson is a member of the NFPA 86 Standards Committee and holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering from The University of Michigan.

Paul Schneider
Paul Schneider is Rockford Systems’ Director of Supply Chain; responsible for Engineering, Operations, and Procurement. He began his career performing Design work in the automation/packaging industry, and has spent the past 19+ years accomplishing roles with increasing responsibility in companies specializing in Thermal Processing and Combustion. Paul’s work experiences include vacuum furnace design, combustion system design, burner design, combustion industry educational workshop instructor, leadership and mentoring experience. As a working Manager, Paul brings a wealth of knowledge to his team, as he is well-versed in Design and Drafting, CAD, CFD, FEA, Basic Engineering Principles, and Custom Engineering of Electrical Control Systems, Combustion Control Systems, Ovens, Furnaces, Burners and Burner-related Equipment.

James Shepard Jr.
James Shepard is Rockford Systems’ Manufacturing Manager; he is responsible for the entire Production crew, creating everything from electrical control panels and machine safe-guarding equipment, to combustion safety equipment. Jim directs the manufacturing facility of the business and he controls everything between the raw materials coming into the plant and the finished products being shipped out of the building. Jim has 36+ years’ experience in manufacturing and management in the combustion industry. He is a proven leader and worker that specializes in Sheet Metal and Heavy Structural fabrication, welding, and Combustion Equipment manufacturing, including Oxygen-Enriched equipment cleaning and assembly. Jim is the embodiment of a manufacturing manager that leads by doing, and understands the processes, tools, and techniques required to perform all of the operations in the shop. Jim is also the Facilities Manager at Rockford Systems and takes care of all of the maintenance at our beautiful, new facility.

Michael Butts
Michael Butts is Rockford Systems’ Combustion Safety Sales Engineer. He brings with him 30 years of experience in the Thermal Process and Combustion Industries, first as an Engineer and over the past 13 years, as a Sales Engineer and Inside Salesman for a Fortune 100 company. Mike is the person most likely to answer your call to Rockford Systems when you call about Combustion Safety equipment. He can also come to your facility and inspect all of your current equipment and provide recommendations on maintenance, replacement, and any recommended improvements. He has the experience and knowledge to address all of your needs and guide your selection of the proper equipment for you specific application. Mike specializes in selecting the equipment that has been correctly sized for your needs, and is compliant to all applicable codes and regulations for your particular process and region. Mike was also a combustion industry educational workshop instructor and is an expert and finding the correct answers and solutions to meet all of your Combustion Safety needs. Give him a call and see what Rockford Systems can do for you!

Melanie Jones-Espinosa
Melanie Jones-Espinosa is a Safety Controls Engineer, specializing in Combustion Safety. Melanie graduated from Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, earning a B.S. for Electrical Engineering Technology in 2010 and a M.S. in Manufacturing Systems in 2011. She brings with her 7 years’ Electrical Engineering work experience, including 5 years’ experience in Combustion Safety controls engineering for a Fortune 100 company. She has developed and modified control systems for everything from a simple burner, to complex large systems in a large spectrum of projects from glass manufacturing facilities to power generation plants. In her past year with Rockford Systems, she has also added to her skills with developing safety controls systems for ensuring safe operation of manufacturing production equipment such as presses, lathes, grinders, and automated production equipment. Melanie can take care of all of your controls needs to help keep your plant safe!

Matt Reeter
Matt Reeter is a Lead Designer at Rockford Systems, and is one of the people responsible for taking your Combustion Safety concepts from a list of components to a functional reality! Matt is well-versed in 2D and 3D CAD and also has experience with CFD and FEA analysis. A 20-year designer, Matt has worked in the combustion industry since 2007, and draws on 12 years’ previous experience with a Fortune 100 combustion company to provide every day solutions for your projects. Matt has extensive experience in drafting and design of combustion safety valvetrains, support structures for combustion equipment, burners, burner systems and duct systems. Matt specializes in providing real-world solutions that are economical to produce and easy to maintain!

Michael Thompson
Mike Thompson is a Lead Designer at Rockford Systems, and is one of the people responsible for taking your Combustion Safety concepts from a list of components to a functional reality! Mike is well-versed in 3D CAD, CFD flow simulation and FEA structural analysis. A 25-year seasoned designer, Mike draws from 9 years’ experience in aircraft design and drafting. He has previously worked in the combustion industry since 2007 with a Fortune 100 combustion company and a year with an industrial oven manufacturer to provide every day solutions for your projects. Mike has 12 years’ experience in drafting and design of combustion safety valvetrains, support structures for combustion equipment, burners, burner systems and duct systems. Mike specializes in new product development and solutions that meet Engineering and Service requirements, and project cost objectives.