- IMA Annual Luncheon: We’re two weeks away from the IMA’s Annual Luncheon in Chicago and I’m excited that we are very close to selling out again – the reservation link will be closed soon. If you want to attend our premier event of the year on Friday, December 6 at the JW Marriott Hotel, you better act fast! Our keynote speaker, Dr. Suresh Sunderrajan oversees the Energy and Global Directorate at Argonne National Laboratory where he develops solutions related to energy, manufacturing, and global security. We’re proudly recognizing Philippi-Hagenbuch from Peoria as our 2019 Barry L. MacLean Manufacturer of the Year. Morning breakout sessions will include discussions on trade & tariffs, employment policies, education and workforce development, and the IMA’s Association Health Care Plan. Don’t miss this great event featuring 450+ business and political leaders.
- Lake County Manufacturing: It’s great to see manufacturing on a roll in Lake County! According to our colleagues at Lake County Partners, an IMA member, since 2015 Lake County has landed 23 business attraction and expansion wins, resulting in 2,400 new jobs and 1,500 retained jobs. Manufacturing expansion has pumped more than $550 million into the economy. According to the IMA’s Manufacturing Matters economic study, every direct manufacturing job supports an additional 1.6 jobs. It’s great to see companies like Fischer Paper Products, Harger Lightning & Grounding, Synergy Flavors, and State Optical Company expanding their footprint in Illinois.
- IMA Environmental Conference: The IMA hosted an initial Environmental Conference this week in Oak Forest that was outstanding. Dozens of manufacturing leaders from Illinois and across the Midwest attended this inaugural event that featured remarks from United States EPA Administrator Cathy Stepp along with Illinois EPA Director John Kim and his top staff. IMA partners Miller Canfield, HeplerBroom LLC, and Roux Associates rounded out the panels that focused on environmental laws and regulations, compliance, enforcement, and PFAs in manufacturing. Watch for coming details about next year’s conference.
- Bill Hickey: Longtime IMA Board member and former Chairman Bill Hickey, Jr. was named the 2019 Steel Executive of the Year by The Association of Steel Distributors this week. Bill is a longtime advocate for the American steel industry who has lent his time and talent to the Illinois Manufacturers’ Association and many other organizations over his storied 40-year career. He is a true gentleman but has never been afraid to speak truth to power and stand up for what is right. I often use one of Bill’s favorite quotes when speaking that “manufacturing creates wealth in this country” and am thrilled to see him receive this honor. Congratulations Bill!
- Happy Thanksgiving: I’ll be taking a break next week and celebrating Thanksgiving with family and friends in Springfield. While the origins of Thanksgiving date back to the Pilgrims at Plymouth Rock in 1621, the holiday became official in 1863 at the height of the Civil War when President Abraham Lincoln issued a proclamation calling on Americans to ask God to “commend to his tender care all those who became widows, orphans, mourners, or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife.” At the IMA, we are thankful for our soldiers – past and present – along with first responders who help ensure our safety. We are thankful for the farmers who help feed the world, educators who teach our children, and health care professionals who care for the sick. We are thankful for all of our member companies – the creators and innovators – who make the world a better place every single day. I hope that you have a safe and blessed Thanksgiving.
Thanks for reading and have a great weekend!
President & CEO