Corporate Partnerships: Koppers

A part of Pittsburgh since 1915, Koppers takes pride in its history while always keeping the focus forward.

With more than 2,300 employees at 45 operating locations worldwide, the company places a premium value building the talents of its people. When staff members demonstrate they are strong candidates for promotion, Koppers offers specialized training to provide them with the right tools for success, growth, and added responsibilities.

We’ve been very satisfied over the last two-plus years that we’ve been working with RMU. They’ve done a great job with our people, and our people have enjoyed the program.

Leroy Ball, CEO, Koppers

Recently Koppers turned to several Pittsburgh universities to ask how each would propose to overhaul and advance the company’s in-house leadership development training. They were won over by Robert Morris.

Leaning on its tradition of business education, RMU was ready to collaborate with Koppers on a custom program to address the most critical skill sets needed by its top candidates for promotion.

I looked back at my notes to see if I was using the tools that were given to me at Robert Morris, and I’m using multiple things already. It really helps me in my day-to-day activities.

Kevin Rapsack, Environment, Health and Safety Manager, Koppers


  • Simulation training
  • Full-day seminars
  • Campus conference facility
  • Final ceremony and dinner

The company has already sent three groups of talented staff to the Koppers Leadership Forum. Each full-day workshop and seminar is taught by RMU faculty in a state-of-the-art conference facility on the university campus. At the completion of the program, participants are given a ceremonial reception dinner on campus with their teachers and with company and university officials.

Koppers is a dynamic company. They are innovative and changing year to year. So they had to pause and think about their internal leadership development, and ask what the next level for that program could be.

Derya Jacobs, Sr. VP for Corporate Relations and Strategic Initiatives, RMU