Frank Lopez lost his job in 1983. With four stepchildren at home, Frank was determined to find a new way to provide for his family. With guidance from a relative in the manufacturing industry and a go-getter attitude, Frank started Aztec Manufacturing Corporation the same year he lost his job.
Aztec Manufacturing specializes in production machining of automotive parts, which it sells to assembly plants owned by the nation’s largest automotive companies. Aztec’s innovative equipment is considered to be some of the best in the industry, enhancing quality and production without adding cost.
A minority-owned company, Aztec was originally located in Ecorse, where it machined castings and forgings for the Ford Heavy Truck Division. After five successful years in the industry, Aztec quickly outgrew its old building and moved to its current location in Romulus—a 74,000-square-foot warehouse and manufacturing facility with an additional 5,000-square-feet of office space.
Aztec’s move to Romulus was strategic: the company needed a larger space to house the influx of new clients and work, but they also wanted to be closer to customers and roadways. With multiple access points to the major highways in southeast Michigan, relocating to Romulus was an advantageous move.
Through the years, Frank remained an active member of the community, serving as a board member of the Small Business Association of Michigan, chairman of the Southeast Michigan Community Alliance, board member of the Wayne-Monroe County Workforce Development, president of the Southern Wayne County Regional Chamber and chairman of Michigan Works! Association.
Today, Frank has stepped back from his role as president of the company, staying on as chairman. His son Greg—who has 15 years of experience in tool and die and quality control management—came on board as a plant manager in 1988, and now serves as Aztec’s president.
Greg continues his father’s legacy of community involvement through multiple sponsorships, including community golf outings and a Student of the Month at Romulus Community Schools. Once a year, Aztec hosts Manufacturing Day, inviting Romulus High School students into the facility and introducing manufacturing as a potential career path.
As for their favorite part about operating a business in Romulus, Frank and Greg both agree it’s the people.
“When you surround yourself with people, clients and a community who can contribute to your success as a company, that is something special,” said Frank. “That’s what happened at Aztec. We have 88 capable and outstanding employees who have been with the company for many years and none of this would have been possible without them.”
To learn more about Aztec Manufacturing Corporation, please visit www.aztecmfgcorp.com.