Sealevel founder, CEO recognized for manufacturing contributions in SC

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Tom O’Hanlan, second from right, holds the award he received during the 2018 South Carolina Manufacturing Conference and Expo. With him are, from left, Sarah Beasley, Ben O’Hanlan, Susan O’Hanlan, and Brandon Maddox.

Sealevel Systems Inc. founder and CEO Tom O’Hanlan recently received the Outstanding Manufacturing Lifetime Service Award at the 2018 South Carolina Manufacturing Conference and Expo. 

The award is given to someone who has contributed significantly to and made a lasting impact on the manufacturing community of South Carolina.

“O’Hanlan has been committed to giving back to the community in many tangible ways; including supporting STEM initiatives and serving in leadership roles in education, health care, manufacturing councils, and other community-focused organizations,” judges for the award said in a news release.

O’Hanlan designed the first RS-422/485 communication adapter for the IBM PC in 1984. Two years later he founded Sealevel, which provides industrial computing solutions and a variety of communications and input-output products including interface cards, Ethernet serial servers, and USB serial adapters.

O’Hanlan, who manufactured each product himself in Sealevel’s early days, holds patents for several of his inventions. The company’s $1.6 million investment in equipment and over $400,000 in facility upfits enable Sealevel to offer quality manufacturing services. More than 60 jobs in Pickens County have been provided by Sealevel.

Also contributing to his community, O’Hanlan has chaired the Baptist Easley Hospital board of directors and has served as an advisory board member for the Pickens County Career Center. He also founded Manufacturers Caring for Pickens County, which unites leaders from the Pickens County School District, Tri-County Technical College, and the manufacturing community. Through MCPC, job skills awareness is provided and area CEOs are involved in Pickens County schools to strengthen the manufacturing community.

“South Carolina is a great place to do business; we’ve enjoyed being here for 37 years,” O’Hanlan said in his acceptance speech. “Without family, friends, customers, suppliers, and a good community of support like this, we wouldn’t be here today.”

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