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SME Speaks: 2012: The Year of Excellence

 LaRoux Gillespie

By LaRoux K. Gillespie, Dr. Eng., FSME, CMfgE, PE
Society of Manufacturing Engineers


This has been an exceptional year for SME. Using proven commercial modules in a cloud-computing environment, we changed 25 years of computing practice and coding, which took monumental effort on behalf of our staff. We found that years of special coding for financial systems required exceptional effort to convert documented results into the new system. The new system provides even higher levels of security, and will reduce computing costs in spite of ever-increasing requirements.

Our efforts to update and modernize our Tool & Manufacturing Engineers Handbook (TMEH) data are under way and involve many volunteers in the peer-reviewed process. In addition, our endeavors to instantaneously provide you with exactly what you want from our massive inventory of technical knowledge is progressing, although it will be next year before we make that broadly available. While “instantaneously” may slightly exaggerate delivering tailored books and videos to you, “delivered in a few hours” does not stretch what we can and will do. Any subject, any combination of existing resources, any way you want it! We are not quite finished, but our path to the finish line is clear.

In September, SME released a new white paper entitled, “Workforce Imperative: A Manufacturing Education Strategy” during a press conference in Chicago, and instantly received national coverage on Fox Business as well as in newspapers, magazines and other video coverage. The fact that national news interviewed SME for information about manufacturing is a clear sign of the impact the Society has and is continuing to foster.

The SME Strategic Plan 2017 was completed this year after extensive study and review. It expands SME’s role in manufacturing, while maintaining all the venues and ideals of our past. You will find SME mentioned much more frequently in the press as a result of the thrusts focused on this year. ME Media, which is an expanded version of Manufacturing Engineering magazine publishing, was launched this year with an impressive array of digital offerings that go far beyond the magazine itself. This is a major enhancement to SME offerings.

Our Journal of Manufacturing Processes published its largest-ever issue this year, and its growth in readership and publications is a testament to the expanding interest in process improvements and variety.

The Society is working with the US Department of Defense to define approaches for our returning veterans to obtain the training needed to rebuild the manufacturing economy. While the details are not yet defined, SME is proud to be part of helping veterans get the training they need, which will provide them with a lifetime of good jobs in manufacturing.
Furthermore, we are partnering with the National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute (NAMII, Youngstown, OH). This consortium is a partnership between dozens of companies, universities and nonprofit organizations in Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia to increase the successful transition of additive manufacturing technology to manufacturing enterprises within the United States. SME is a world leader in this area.

SME’s focus on outstanding high school programs featuring manufacturing is generating national recognition. These programs are truly exceptional, not only for teaching manufacturing, but for their emphasis on student achievement and involvement. Students are excited, involved and excellent examples of success and drive.

Perhaps the most notable impact we have had this year is how local industry and SME chapters have banded together to work with the SME Education Foundation’s (SME-EF’s) PRIME schools to provide mentors, helpers, recognition and competition support to further the outstanding efforts of these schools and their students. Hawthorne High School’s (Hawthorne, CA) efforts with Northrop Grumman (Redondo Beach, CA ) and Wheeling High School’s (Wheeling, IL) work with several local companies and SME’s Chicago Chapter 5 are truly inspiring stories of how our members, SME and the Foundation’s efforts change the world.

It has been a year of excellence and one that sets the stage for a great future. 2012 was a good year!

Congratulations to the 2012 Class of SME Fellows

Six manufacturing leaders have been elected to the 2012 SME College of Fellows. Recipients are recognized by their peers and the manufacturing community as key contributors to the social, technical and educational progress of manufacturing.

Dean L. Bartles
Dean L. Bartles
, PhD, FSME, is vice president of advanced programs and strategic growth for the Ordnance and Tactical Systems Division of General Dynamics Corp. He has served in both domestic and international capacities, with emphasis on manufacturing facility startups, plant management and research and development. Bartles has more than 34 years of management experience, which has included positions with Fairchild Republic Co., General Defense Corp., Olin Ordnance and Primex Technologies. He currently serves as an SME international director. He graduated from Shepherd College with a BS in business administration, holds a master’s degree in international business from Tampa College, an MBA from Shippensburg University and a doctorate in business administration from Nova Southeastern University. Member Since 2002



  Ruxu Du

Ruxu Du
, PhD, FSME, received his master’s from the South China University of Technology in 1983 and his PhD from the University of Michigan in 1989. He has taught in the University of Windsor and the University of Miami. Currently, Du is a professor in the Department of Mechanical and Automation Engineering at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. He is also the director of the Chinese Academy of Science Guangzhou Institute of Advanced Technology and the director of the Institute of Precision Engineering of CUHK. His research area includes design and manufacturing (metalforming and machining) as well as robotics. Du has published more than 300 papers in various academic journals and international conferences. He is also a fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. Member Since 2002



F. Brian Holmes
F. Brian Holmes
, FSME, CMfgE, is vice president and general manager at Columbia Plastics Ltd. where he is responsible for the overall company performance. During his career, Holmes has overseen the design and construction of a new plant to consolidate two plant operations, and he worked on the development of injection-molded wood waste for silvaculture containers, which spun off into a separate company. The president of SME in 2007, Holmes was the founding chair of the fomer Greater Vancouver Chapter 318. In the CanAm section of (the former) Region 7, he held the positions of secretary, chair-elect and chair. From 1987 to 1991, Holmes served as chapter liaison representative and member of the International Membership Council Coordinating Committee. He has been a member of the SME Board Work Group on Governance, the Audit, Budget and Finance committees. Holmes received the 1991 SME Award of Merit, the SME Endurance Award and the Joseph A. Siegel Service Award in 1999. Holmes holds an associate degree in engineering technology from the British Columbia Institute of Technology. Member Since 1982


Fritz KlockeFritz Klocke
, Prof. Dr.-Ing., FSME, studied manufacturing engineering at the TU Berlin, was a research fellow there at the Institute for Machine Tools and Manufacturing Technology until 1981 and then as head engineer until 1984, receiving his engineering doctorate in 1982. Klocke worked in industry from 1984 until 1994 at Ernst Winter & Sohn in Hamburg. In 1995, he joined RWTH Aachen as professor of manufacturing engineering technology, and since then, has been chair of manufacturing technology, co-director of the WZL Laboratory for Machine Tools & Production Engineering at the RWTH Aachen and head of the Fraunhofer Institute for Production Technology IPT in Aachen. Klocke was awarded the Otto-Kienzle Memorial Coin in 1985 by the Manufacturing Engineering University Group. Member Since 2011



 Steven Y. Liang
Steven Y. Liang
, PhD, FSME, is the Morris M. Bryan Jr. professor in mechanical engineering for advanced manufacturing systems at the Georgia Institute of Technology. He received his PhD in mechanical engineering in 1987 from the University of California at Berkeley. Liang was the institute’s founding director of Precision Machining Research Consortium, director of Manufacturing Education Program and associate director of Manufacturing Research Center. From 2008–11, he served as chief technical officer, vice president, then president of Walsin Lihwa Corp., a publicly traded manufacturing entity with more than $6 billion in revenue. His technical interests lie in precision engineering, extreme manufacturing and technology innovation. Liang served as president of the North American Manufacturing Research Institution of SME (NAMRI/SME) and chair of the Manufacturing Engineering Division of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. He is the recipient of many prestigious awards including the 1991 Robert B. Douglas SME Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineer Award, the 1995 SAE Ralph R. Teetor Education Award and the 2005 ASME Blackall Machine Tool and Gage Award. Member Since 1988



 Yung C. Shin

Yung C. Shin, PhD, FSME, is currently a professor of mechanical engineering and holds the Donald A. and Nancy G. Roach Professorship of Advanced Manufacturing. Shin received his PhD in mechanical engineering from the University of Wisconsin in Madison in 1984. He worked as a senior project engineer at the General Motors Technical Center in Warren, MI, from 1984 to 1988 and as an assistant professor at the Pennsylvania State University from 1988 to 1990. In 1990, he joined the School of Mechanical Engineering at Purdue University. Since then, he has developed new manufacturing courses and laboratories, which are now equipped with the state-of-the-art facilities worth well over $4M. His research areas include laser processing of materials, intelligent and adaptive control of manufacturing processes, machining of advanced materials, process monitoring and automation. Member Since 1994

2013 DDM Competition to Focus on Additive
Manufacturing Machines


For the 2013 Design for Direct Digital Manufacturing Competition, student designers are asked to go beyond "just parts" to utilize additive manufacturing for the creation of a machine. The result will be a functional mechanism or assembly with moving parts. The geometry of the design must be defined within a three-dimensional (3-D), computer-aided design (CAD) system capable of producing robust STL files. The deliverable shall include a complete bill of material/parts list where file transfer enables reproduction of the device. This year’s challenge seeks to showcase additive manufacturing in the age of Web sharing and point-of-use manufacture. As the designer, you are only limited by your imagination. Use this opportunity to reveal your additive manufactured machine in a device everyone can appreciate. Submit all forms and files prior to the Monday, April 29, 2013, deadline. Entries will be judged by Monday, May 6, 2013, and winners will be notified shortly thereafter. An announcement of the winners and runners-up will be made at SME's RAPID Conference & Exposition, June 10-13, 2013, in Pittsburgh. This competition is sponsored by the Direct Digital Manufacturing Tech Group, which is part of SME's Rapid Technologies & Additive Manufacturing Community. Visit for rules and information.



This article was first published in the December 2012 edition of Manufacturing Engineering magazine.  Click here for PDF

Published Date : 12/1/2012

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