Steven Rigby: A Signature Career

Steve Rigby

Standing in front of the newly remodeled Cougar Copies store are (from the left) Mary Read, director of University Publishing, holding the in-plant’s 2009 IPMA Management Award; Edward Sala, Web Services manager; Steven Rigby, director of Printing; and Sharon Kimble, Cougar Copies manager, showing off the in-plant’s FSC certificate.

Operator Dave Nowak (right) shows off a project being printed on the new six-color HP Indigo 3500. With him is Steve Rigby, director of printing.

From high-school graphics student to Washington State University director of printing, Steven Rigby has excelled as a production pro, plant manager, and all-around class act.

At age 14, Steven Rigby became an Eagle Scout, the highest achievement in the Boy Scouts of America program. As he completed the final leap to the top of the Scouting ranks, he also took his first step toward a top-notch career in printing.

“I received my Eagle Scout certificate, which was signed by [then] President Richard Nixon in blue ink,” recalls Rigby, now director of Printing Services at Washington State University. “I wondered how that [signature] happened, since I was quite sure he didn’t sign it himself.”

Rigby’s curiosity about ink-on-paper reproduction inspired him to sign up for the graphics program at Provo High School in Provo, Utah. “It just sucked me in,” he declares. He credits his teacher as a major influence and mentor.

Rigby proved to be a more-than-apt pupil. So much so that, when the graphics teacher went out on sabbatical during Rigby’s senior year in the mid-1970s, guess who served as the unofficial replacement?

“Well, the English teacher came in to take roll, but I really taught the classes,” Rigby reveals. “I just thought it was a fascinating thing how ink got from here to there.”

Rigby went on to attend Brigham Young University (BYU), where he studied business and advertising. He also met his wife Debbie there. They now have five children and nine grandchildren.

During his first year at BYU, Rigby also worked at the university in-plant. “My first job was melting lead for the linotype machine,” he recounts. In the latter half of his college years, he worked for a couple of commercial shops in Provo.

After graduation, starting around 1980, Rigby worked at a few large commercial printers, including Paragon Press, in Salt Lake City. He served as pressman, paper buyer and sales rep, as well as in bindery and prepress departments, and eventually worked his way up to management.

Related story: Washington State University: Ever Green

Related Content