Melvin H. Ripple
Melvin H. Ripple joined The Hoover Company in 1948 as a draftsman and retired as vice president of manufacturing and engineering for Hoover Worldwide Corporation. During his career with Hoover, Ripple held a variety of posts in engineering. As chief engineer—development, he developed the revolutionary self-propelled feature, then called Power Drive, which made it possible for an upright to glide virtually under its own power. This patented feature has been employed in Hoover’s Power Drive upright. Ripple was also instrumental in the development of the company’s first U.S. floor washer, a common motor for uprights and canisters, and a number of small appliances. Twenty Hoover patents bear his name.
Ripple held a degree in mechanical engineering from Carnegie Institute of Technology and a degree in internal combustion engines from the University of Alabama. He helped organize and chair the Canton/Alliance/Massillon section of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. Ripple received the Engineering Award for Distinguished Service from the Canton section of the Professional Engineering Society of Ohio in 1981. In 1992, he received the Kremmy Award for Volunteer of the Year at the Hoover Historical Center.
Ripple was an extraordinarily talented individual, both professionally and personally. In his personal life, Ripple was an accomplished furniture maker who devoted many volunteer hours to building furniture for the Hoover Historical Center and wooden pieces for the company’s Pro Football Hall of Fame float.
1995 Vacuum & Sewing Hall of Fame Inductee