Ryan Modlin, NAM’s vice president for government relations, attended today’s White House bill signing ceremony and got to talking with Peter M. Perez, the new deputy assistant secretary for manufacturing in the International Trade Administration, Department of Commerce. Peter is former CEO of the family-owned Carter Products Co. in Grand Rapids, Mich., and a former board member of the National Association of Manufacturers.

Along with running the family-owned business, Peter also had a distinguished career in the manufacturing of musical instruments. He served as president of the Elkhart, Ind.-based Conn-Selman Inc. and Waltham, Mass.-based Steinway Musical Instruments Inc. Steinway!

And as a matter of fact, Peter told Ryan, some 20 years or so ago he helped refurbish the piano being played at today’s White House ceremony.

Steinway has more info on the instrument:

The second White House piano was built and presented to President Franklin Roosevelt in 1938 to commemorate the production of Steinways 300,000th piano. The new piano, designed by New York architect Eric Gugler, was more than nine feet long, with a case of Honduran mahogany and gold leaf by artist Dunbar Beck. Last renovated in 1992 during the administration of George H. W. Bush, the piano remains today in the East Room of the White House.

Small world! And judging from the music we heard on television, job well done, too.  Congratulations all the way around, Peter.