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Manufacturing Professionals Gather in Cleveland to Access Knowledge, Connections, Innovations Driving the Industry's Future

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Society of Manufacturing Engineers Annual Conference Enables Industry Professionals to Discover, Connect, Collaborate

DEARBORN, Mich., May 17, 2012 — As the United States manufacturing sector continues to gain momentum, manufacturing professionals can continue their own development at the 2012 Society of Manufacturing Engineers Annual Conference. Held June 3-5, 2012, in the manufacturing stronghold of Cleveland, the conference offers the networking, learning opportunities and technological innovations that are integral to the industry’s future.

“At the SME Annual Conference, manufacturing professionals have the chance to be part of something bigger – bigger than themselves, bigger than their companies – a resurgence of manufacturing as a driver of this nation’s economy,” said Mark C. Tomlinson, executive director and CEO of the Society. “From keynote addresses by national innovation leaders based right here in Cleveland to tours of top-line manufacturing facilities and a showcase of the latest manufacturing innovations, this conference is an incredibly valuable development opportunity.”

The 2012 SME Annual Conference will give participants access to not one, but two high-profile keynote speakers.

The first is Ramon "Ray" Lugo III, director at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) John H. Glenn Research Center in Cleveland. His address will highlight some of the ways NASA technology is being transferred to various manufacturing applications. Lugo is responsible for planning, organizing and directing the activities required in accomplishing the missions assigned to the Center, including advancing exploration of the solar system and beyond while maintaining global leadership in aeronautics.

The second keynote speaker is Tom Kiser, CEO of PSI Energy Solutions in Cleveland. Kiser has 30 years of experience implementing holistic, innovative energy efficiency strategies that have proven time and time again that a systems approach is about more than energy savings – they can drive reductions in the costs of manufacturing production. His keynote speech will outline what he believes is a necessary and transformative shift in the way the industry thinks about producing, distributing and using energy that will set America on the path to sustainable self-sufficiency. In 2012, Kiser teamed up with an Ohio-based metals manufacturing company, Worthington Industries, Inc., as part of his push to take PSI global.

Conference attendees will have the opportunity to tour the NASA Glenn Research Center as part of the event program. SME will also offer tours of the machine division of Cleveland-based Lincoln Electric, the world leader in the design, development and manufacture of arc welding products, robotic arc welding systems, fume control systems, plasma and oxyfuel cutting equipment that has a leading global position in the brazing and soldering alloys market.

Central to the event’s programming are sessions showcasing SME’s 2012 “Innovations That Could Change the Way You Manufacture.” This year’s featured technologies include products and processes that already are generating significant cost reductions and advancing operations for manufacturers across the country. They include automated blade profiling, hyper-carbide cutting tools, model predictive controls, advanced control solutions, technology designed to accelerate LED lighting adoption, regenerative medicine and quantum locking.

The Society of Manufacturing Engineers is including a one-year membership with all paid conference registrations. Also included is admission to the Society of Manufacturing Engineers International Awards Gala, an evening of dining, music and dancing honoring the outstanding achievements of SME members.

New this year is the SME Annual Conference Student Competition. This is a collegiate-level manufacturing competition in which student chapter members choose, select and build their own manufacturing project to be evaluated by a select group of manufacturing professionals and educators.

“The networking, technology and resources at the SME Annual Conference make it a must for manufacturing professionals looking to advance their careers,” said 2011 conference attendee and SME member Jeffrey J. Arnold. “I left last year’s event inspired to help my company improve our operations, and with the knowledge and connections to make it happen. If I were to attend just one professional development event a year, this would be it. SME means it when they say the conference is an invaluable opportunity to 'meet, know and grow.’”

In addition to NASA Glenn Research Center, PSI Energy Solutions and Lincoln Electric, numerous Cleveland area manufacturing companies will take part in the event. Among them is Cleveland-based Tooling U, an SME company and the leading developer of online training for manufacturing companies and educational institutions, which will highlight solutions to the nation’s manufacturing skills gap crisis.

SME host chapters for the 2012 conference are Cleveland Chapter 3 and Northeast Ohio Chapter 220.

Event details, registration and housing information for the 2012 SME Annual Conference are available at www.sme.org/conference or by calling 800.733.4763.

For more information, connect on Facebook or the SME member-driven network on LinkedIn. Follow SME on Twitter and join the conversation using the hashtag #SMEannual.

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About SME:
The Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) (www.sme.org) is the premier source for manufacturing knowledge, education and networking. Through its many programs, events, magazine, publications and online training division, Tooling U, SME connects manufacturing practitioners to each other, to the latest technologies and to the most up-to-date manufacturing processes. SME has members around the world and is supported by a network of chapters and technical communities. A 501(c)3 organization, SME is a leader in manufacturing workforce development issues, working with industry, academic and government partners to support the current and future skilled workforce.

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If you have any questions or comments, please contact SME Public Relations at 313.425.3000, email communications@sme.org or fax: 313.425.3403.