By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
Monday, the Business Council of Alabama (BCA) and the Alabama Technology Network (ATN) announced the 14 finalists for the Manufacturer of the Year Awards. The BCA announced this year’s finalist in a written statement released on Monday.
The winners will be announced at a luncheon on Wednesday at the RSA Activity Center in Montgomery. Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange will be the keynote speaker at Wednesday’s event. The President and CEO of the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), Jay Timmons will also participate in the event from Washington, D.C. via teleconference. The BCA is the exclusive representative for both NAM and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in Alabama. President Timmons will present the third annual Governor Bob Riley Building a Better Alabama Award.
This is the 13th year of the awards program recognizing the Alabama manufacturers which exhibit “excellence in leadership, performance, profitability, and work force relations.” There are three categories of awards for small, medium, and large size categories based on the number of employees of the company.
BCA president and CEO William J. Canary said, “These existing manufacturing companies epitomize what it takes to grow the private sector, create jobs, and move Alabama’s economy forward. We applaud all the finalists for their commitment to a better quality of life for their employees and for their commitment to the local community they serve.”
The finalists in the Small Manufacturer category (1-99 employees) are Cascades Sonoco in Birmingham, Earthborn Studios in Leeds, and the Electrifil Corporation in Elkmont. The finalists in the Medium Manufacturer category (100-399 employees) are 3M Company in Guin, Daikin America Inc. in Decatur, Gambro Rental Products in Opelika, Heritage Wire Harness, LLC in Ft. Payne, the Lear Corporation in Montgomery, and Prystup Packaging Products in Livingston. The Large Manufacturer Finalists (400+ employees) are Austal USA in Mobile, Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company in Gadsden, Rheem Water Heating in Montgomery, Sikorsky Aircraft in Troy, and Toyota Motor Manufacturing Alabama, Inc. in Huntsville.
The Alabama Technology Network (ATN) links Alabama’s Community Colleges, The University of Alabama System, Auburn University and the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama (EDPA) together to assist the state’s existing manufacturing industry. This link allows Alabama manufacturers to “make things better in their business.” ATN is Alabama’s Affiliate of the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Manufacturing Extension Partnership. ATN provides training services through a variety of training options and methods and provides teams of experts who provide their expertise to meet the needs of Alabama’s manufacturers.
The winning manufacturers are selected by an independent panel of judges. The winners of the award are selected based on superior performance in customer focus, employee commitment, operational excellence, continuous improvement, profitable growth, and by their investment in training and retraining.
The purpose of this is event is to both provide an opportunity to recognize the excellent performance of high achieving Alabama manufacturers and to increase the public’s awareness of the significance of manufacturing in the Alabama economy.
The 2012 Alabama Manufacturer of the Year Award ceremony and luncheon will be Wednesday, June 20, 2012 at 11:30 a.m. at the RSA Alabama Activity Center. The RSA Alabama Activity Center is at 201 Dexter Avenue in Montgomery.
The BCA is a non-partisan statewide business association. Almost one million Alabama workers are employed by the member companies of the BCA.