A Night To Remember
An Evening of Vision, Views and Vitality Changing Maryland Manufacturing
May 27, 2016- On Thursday evening, fourteen STEM student groups from all over Maryland came to Martin’s West to showcase their Robotics, Drones, 3D Printers, and more to leading Maryland manufacturers.The students could have been in awe of caliber of top manufacturers including GM, Textron, P&G, Northrop Grumman, McCormick and Company among others, but it was the manufacturers who were wowed by the prestigious students. Some of the students have won world awards for their robotics projects.The Gala had some touching moments. John Raut from GM, who is battling stage-4 bone cancer, was recognized for his distinguished service to Maryland Manufacturing and RMI’s Chairman Drew Greenblatt from Marlin Steel Wire was honored for his outstanding leadership to Maryland manufacturing as his RMI Chairmanship came to a close.
The audience was uplifted with visionary remarks from newly elected Chairman of RMI, Aris Melissaratos. He reminded the group what it was like when manufacturing was king when he first started working at Westinghouse over 40 years ago. He then challenged them to not rest on their laurels and to continue to innovate to stay one step ahead of global competitors.
Maryland Commerce Secretary Mike Gill’s provided the Gala’s opening remarks. He came out strong making the case for why manufacturing is vital for Maryland’s future growth and his engaging presentation helped to lay the foundation for highly energized evening complete with student presentations, touching awards, tears and cheers.
Other speakers included Calvin Butler Jr., President and CEO of BGE, who showcased some of the utility’s energy savings programs and the efforts they are making with a coalition of like-minded companies to invest in the distressed areas West Baltimore. He also discussed the importance of the RMI partnership in helping Maryland manufacturing reduce energy to free up costs for increased productivity growth.
Demian Costa, Managing Partner of Sagamore Ventures, an affiliate of Plank Industries, highlighted their “City Garage” initiative at Port Covington and opportunities they are creating for manufacturing entrepreneurs who are just starting out.
The project “Lighthouse” will be focus on manufacturing process improvement. Costa discussed the goal of innovating the process to increase speed-to-market by introducing local for local manufacturing that will produce better product globally.
Finally, Anirban Basu, President of the Sage Policy Group, acknowledged that manufacturing only represents 4% of Maryland’s economy, but it has a tremendous wealth affect that the service industries don’t provide. He saluted RMI’s efforts to educate policy makers why manufacturing is important to our growth and that we can’t just be focusing on biotech and cyber security.
“Another out-of-the park event!,” said Neill Christopher, Vice President of Manufacturing of Acadia Windows and Doors. “The speakers were awesome, and the whole program was fast-paced and engaging. The students were particularly well spoken. If you keep this up, you’ll make manufacturing the career of choice again!,” he said.