Commerce Official Connects with Manufacturers in Nashville

DEARBORN, Mich., May 25, 2010 — Nicole Lamb-Hale is on a mission to increase the competitiveness of American industry, and she wants to connect directly with the individuals who are core to our nation’s manufacturing success. So she’s heading to Nashville to meet with some of them...

U.S. Assistant Secretary for Manufacturing & Services to Address Manufacturing Professionals at SME Annual Conference

DEARBORN, Mich., May 25, 2010 — Nicole Lamb-Hale is on a mission to increase the competitiveness of American industry, and she wants to connect directly with the individuals who are core to our nation's manufacturing success. So she's heading to Nashville to meet with some of them at the Society of Manufacturing Engineers Annual Conference: Bridging the Gaps at the Sheraton Music City Hotel in Nashville, June 6-8, 2010.

With roots in the manufacturing community, Lamb-Hale now serves as the Assistant Secretary for Manufacturing & Services for the International Trade Administration in the U.S. Department of Commerce. She plans to spend her time in Nashville talking with manufacturers about their successes and their concerns.

"I use the Three Cs – convene, collaborate, and connect – as guiding principles to ensure our organization is focused on the needs of U.S. manufacturers," said Lamb-Hale. "We will convene experts to develop solutions for U.S. industry, collaborate with Congress and agencies across government to increase U.S. industry's global competitiveness, and connect industry to resources within state and federal government to forge a path to sustainable, highly skilled jobs for the 21st century economy."

The SME event draws manufacturing professionals from around the world who are interested in sharing new manufacturing ideas, discussing the latest developments and finding real solutions to their challenges. It presents insights into the technologies and processes that span the scope of manufacturing – from breakthroughs in smart and green materials to enablers for renewable energy. The leadership track offers sessions on fostering an innovative culture and how to make the most of innovation within the manufacturing sector. There will also be opportunities to discuss strategies and challenges facing manufacturers such as diversifying, finding new customers and adapting to green demands.

"Our theme this year is ?Bridging the Gaps,'" said Mark C. Tomlinson, SME's executive director and general manager. "Ms. Lamb-Hale's attendance will serve as a bridge between manufacturers and government resources."

In addition to sitting down with the Society's Board of Directors, meeting Honor Award recipients and interacting with attendees, the Assistant Secretary will be a featured speaker at SME's International Awards Gala, Monday, June 7 at 7:30 p.m. at the Sheraton.

Other conference highlights include breakout sessions based on SME's Innovations that Could Change the Way You Manufacture, a leadership track and tours of Gibson Guitar's Custom, Art and Historic Division and the Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Additionally, Dr. Rodney Brooks, a robotics entrepreneur, founder, chairman and chief technology officer of Heartland Robotics Inc., will give a keynote where he will share his goal for creating a powerful evolution in the world's labor markets and his vision for developing low-cost robots designed to empower American manufacturing workers. Brooks is also a founder, board member and former CTO of iRobot Corp., known for the consumer-oriented robot the Roomba®.

SME's 2010 Annual Conference is hosted by SME Nashville Chapter 43 whose members have been crucial in the development of the program.

NOTE TO MEDIA: Media are invited to cover SME's Annual Conference, interview Assistant Secretary Nicole Lamb-Hale, SME officers and other manufacturers upon request.

About SME:

Founded in 1932, the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) is the premier source for manufacturing knowledge, education and networking. Through its many programs, events and activities, SME connects manufacturing practitioners to each other, to the latest technology and the most up-to-date processes spanning all manufacturing industries and disciplines, plus the key areas of aerospace and defense, medical device, motor vehicles, including motorsports, oil and gas and alternative energy. A 501(c)3 organization, SME has members around the world and is supported by a network of technical communities and chapters worldwide.