The Council of Industry will hold it’s annual Manufacturing Champion Awards Breakfast on Friday, May 17th at the Powelton Club to honor this year’s winners. The Manufacturing Champion Awards recognize individuals and organizations who have worked to strengthen and build the manufacturing sector in the Hudson Valley community. These individuals and organization have through vision, dedication, and hard work helped to overcome some of the many obstacles faced by manufacturers in the Hudson Valley community and in so doing they have made it possible for manufacturers and their employees to prosper. This year’s Champions are:
Private Sector Champion: Robb Engle, Vice President Engineering, Sono-Tek Corporation
A longtime employee and leader at Sono-Tek Corporation, Robb has recently been at the forefront of implanting an automated, software driven system that autonomously creates and prioritizes work orders for every work station on the manufacturing floor. This system has increased the accuracy and efficiency of every work center by 10-20% and eliminated 10 -20 hours per week of work order processing and another 20 -40 hours per week of sales order product analysis. In addition, Robb has spent many years volunteering his time at SUNY New Paltz, Marlboro, and other local High schools and with the Hudson Valley Pathways Academy. Rob has been a mentor to the next generation workforce and helped guide many students on their path towards STEM careers.
Public Sector Champion: Meghan Taylor, Director Mid-Hudson Region, Empire State Development Corporation
A Hudson Valley native Meghan has been responsible for guiding and managing ESD’s Mid-Hudson Regional Office and Regional Economic Development Council (REDC) initiative within the seven County Region. The Mid-Hudson Regional Office works hand-in-hand with new and existing businesses to help identify program funding to support business growth and expansion. Meghan has paid particular attention to the Region’s manufacturers ensuring that advanced manufacturing is a priority industry for the REDC and working to bring resources to bear to assist their growth and expansion. Under her leadership, the Mid-Hudson Economic Development Council has secured over $258 million to fund 327 projects. In addition to the success the region has had through the CFA Process, she has also been instrumental in attracting and retaining many companies in the region outside of that process.
Organization Champion: Workforce Development Institute (WDI)
The Workforce Development Institute (WDI) is a statewide non-profit organization that works to grow and keep good jobs in NYS. They use a range of tools — including ground level information, workforce expertise, and funding — to facilitate projects that build skills and strengthen employers’ ability to hire and promote workers. This often fills gaps not covered by other organizations and is accomplished through partnerships and collaborations with businesses, unions, other non-profits, educational institutions, and government. Manufacturing companies are retooling/retrenching and making investments in product innovation, equipment, facilities, and the workforce. WDI believes a healthy manufacturing base is a key driver to grow the of the rest of the economy.
Education Sector Individual Champion: Bryan Van Vliet, Saugerties High School Technology Teacher
Bryan has developed programs for his technology students at Saugerties High School that are not only interesting and educational but prepare them for the future workforce. He has arranged plant tours at local manufacturing facilities so students can see the practical application of their education. He includes a diverse set of projects that vary from gardening to 3D printing to writing computer programs to control a trackless train.
You are invited to celebrate the winners at the Manufacturing Champion Awards Breakfast on Friday, May 17th, from 7:30 – 9:30 am at the Powelton Club in Newburgh. Seats are $35 a person or $325 for a table of ten. Register to attend.
Please consider becoming a sponsor or placing an ad in the event program. For more information click here. Sponsors make this event possible and we would like to thank the following: