We take personal pride in our craft and regard every installed Proto case as a work that bears our signature and identity. Our products are a lasting reflection of our creative and technical capabilities and we are committed to excellence in every detail, from concept to completion. But as always, the ultimate arbiters of product value are the customers themselves. Here are their words.


“Ken Hopkins and his team at Proto Productions were very effective in coordinating with the Museum, the exhibit designers, and the conservators at the National Archives on this complicated case design and troubleshooting issues as they arose. The resulting case is a work of art in and of itself.”

Megan Bryant, Director of Collections & Interpretation, The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza

“I am deeply grateful for the splendid cases you fabricated for the Brinton Museum. They are beautiful in form, reflecting the bright, open spirit-filled world of the Plains Native nations.”

Father Peter J. Powell, Board of Directors, The Brinton Museum

“I did considerable research around the United States to find a museum quality cabinet designer/fabricator to house a rare collection of native American artifacts…when I finally visited Proto Productions outside of Chicago, I had seen many lower quality products, but none of as high a quality as from Ken’s shop. The finished exhibit was breathtaking and the building opened on time with fully displayed exhibits highlighting the entire building.”

Timothy Belton, AIA, NCARB, Building Architect, The Brinton Museum

“During the renovation of our building and design of the exhibition spaces, Proto Productions worked with a variety of people on our end (arhitects, contractors, university administrators) to design exhibit cases that would please everyone. Through innovative thinking and customization, Proto Productions, was able to design 5 permanent window cases in a very unusual space, which is now the showcase of our Museum.”

Jennifer Kirker Priest, Director, Pick Anthropology Museum, Northern Illinois University

“Proto Productions, Inc., has produced many of the exhibitions designed by Staples & Charles Ltd. for nearly 40 years. Frankly, we would not keep inviting Proto to work on our projects, if they weren’t superb craftsmen and terrific problem solvers. Ken Hopkins, President, trained as an industrial designer and is wonderful at working through potential issues early in the project. We met Ken and his team many years ago, when we were designing exhibitions for the Chicago Historical Society and Proto was recommended for the excellence of their graphic production. Over the decades they have added top-quality conservation casework, proper handling and installation of historic artifacts, and great interactives and digital integration to their skill set. And they have always been excellent at coordinating with other fabricators and suppliers.”

Barbara Fahs Charles, Managing Partner and Designer, Staples & Charles Ltd.

“I just wanted to express my gratitude and satisfaction on the new display case that Ken installed last week…your display cases became an integral part of the USAF Expeditionary Center being awarded the 2019 US Air Force Heritage Award.”

Thomas P. Lauria, Historian, USAF Expeditionary Center

“I want to share with you how happy the Order of the Arrow is with the construction and installation of the cases for the exhibit at the National Scouting Museum.  Your team took our concepts and rough designs and turned them into high-quality cases that will last for a long time.  Thank you for your team’s attention to detail as that was noted many times by the patrons as they interacted with the cases.”

Tony Steinhardt, Partner, RATIO Architects, Inc. and Scouting Volunteer

“Following the opening of Feet First: The Scholl Story exhibition, I want to extend my personal appreciation and that of the entire Scholl College of Podiatric Medicine community for the outstanding job you did to make this project a success.”

Richard B. Patterson, President, Scholl College of Podiatric Medicine

“Your ingenuity and ability to problem-solve in the face of significant challenges with materials was particularly remarkable. You and your team made swift adjustments in a highly complex fabricating process.

Not only did the quality of the craftsmanship of the pogo walls exceed our expectations, but the end result was superior to the original plans. Proto’s commitment to accuracy and excellence throughout the design, fabrication, and installation of our new “pogo” partition walls for our refurbished galleries was commendable.”

Constance Clement, Deputy Director, Yale Center for British Art

“Ken Hopkins and his team of designers, fabricators, planners and installers proved outstanding bringing an extraordinary level of ingeniousness, practicality, and resourcefulness to bear on a challenging project. Ever professional, they proved reliable and committed to the success of the work. Proto will be the first fabricator I will call for any comparable project.”

George C. Knight, AIA, Knight Architecture

“The river exhibit at Tekawitha Woods has been in place for two months, and the exclamations of visitors have been non-stop. Many thanks to you and all the staff at Proto Productions who brought the exhibit from the concept phase to a 3-dimensional reality.”

Valeria DePrez, Nature Program Supervisor, Kane County Forest Preserve District

“I thought you might like to know how successful (the exhibit) is proving to be. Visitors are delighted by the appearance of the galleries and often comment on the noticeable quality of craftsmanship which went into the construction of the exhibits.”

Greg Koos, Executive Director, McLean County Historical Society

I want to take this opportunity to express my compliments and appreciation to you and the Proto Productions professionals who helped make the AAL Gallery into the showcase that it is. From start to finish, your careful planning, attention to detail and commitment to quality workmanship were of utmost priority.”

Larry L. Kath, Second Vice President, Aid Association for Lutherans