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PA Secretary Walker Visits Diamond Manufacturing; Discusses Opportunity for Manufacturing Growth

WILKES-BARRE, Pa., Oct. 4, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Department of Community and Economic Development Secretary C. Alan Walker today joined manufacturing leaders to discuss the findings and recommendations of the Governor's Manufacturing Advisory Council during a visit to Diamond Manufacturing in Luzerne County.

"Governor Corbett's mission is straightforward – to make sure that every Pennsylvanian who wants a job, has the opportunity to have a job," Walker said. "With more than a half-million workers in Pennsylvania's manufacturing sector, continued growth in manufacturing will lead to new job growth and economic prosperity."

Recognizing manufacturing's value to Pennsylvania's economy, Corbett late last year commissioned a private advisory council to identify and prioritize top issues that can help influence, sustain and advance that sector in the state.

The 24-member Governor's Manufacturing Advisory Council (GMAC), led by the Team PA Foundation, sent a report to Corbett and the General Assembly outlining a list of 15 key recommendations it believes will help Pennsylvania remain competitive in today's global economy.

The full report is available at www.teampa.com/manufacturingcouncil.

The report focuses on the building blocks of a strong manufacturing sector; new sets of tools to drive innovation and product development; better access to domestic and international markets; strategic public/private collaboration; improved access to capital; and a highly skilled and educated workforce. The council also found that many companies are having a problem finding workers with the skills needed to fill the advanced manufacturing positions that are available.

"Pennsylvania has recently seen the largest increase in manufacturing jobs in the state since 1991, but we can do better," Walker said. "The Corbett administration is committed to developing a workforce in the state that is educated and trained for the jobs of today."

Walker discussed the findings during a visit to Diamond Manufacturing, a Pennsylvania-headquartered manufacturer specializing in the engineering of perforated metal, plastic, and other materials. Diamond Manufacturing is one of 24 council members ranging from a cross-section of manufacturing interests including heavy machinery, minerals, pharmaceuticals, plastics, steel and textiles. The council also includes three members of manufacturing trade associations and one from the Industrial Resource Center.

"We greatly appreciate Diamond Manufacturing's commitment to the council and look forward to working with the members of the council and the General Assembly to grow manufacturing jobs in Pennsylvania," Walker said.

GMAC, co-chaired by Walker and Carlos Cardoso, Chairman, President and CEO of Kennametal Inc., gathered information about challenges facing the industry from a variety of experts and manufacturers. The council conducted meetings over six months starting in January 2012.

Media Contact:
Steven Kratz, DCED, 717-783-1132

Editor's Note: The GMAC members are:
C. Alan Walker, (co-chair), Secretary, Department of Community and Economic Development, Harrisburg
Carlos Cardoso, (co-chair), Chairman, President and CEO, Kennametal Inc., Latrobe
Samuel "Pat" Black, President & CEO, Erie Management Group, Erie
David Barensfeld, President & CEO, Ellwood Group Inc., Ellwood City
Greg Booth, CEO, Zippo Manufacturing Company, Bradford
Heather Chandler, President, Sealstrip Corporation, Gilbertsville
Frank Epifano, CFO, Sanofi Pasteur, Swiftwater
Janis Herschkowitz, President, PRL Industries, Cornwall
Jeff Kelly, CEO, Hamill Manufacturing Company, Trafford
Todd Kennedy, President & CEO, McClarin Plastics, Hanover
Leroy "Tighe" King, Chairman & CEO, Perform Group LLC, York
Daniel Langdon, President, East Penn Manufacturing Co., Inc., Lyon Station
Michael McLanahan, Chairman & CEO, McLanahan Corporation, Hollidaysburg
Louay Mishu, Plant Manager – Family Care, Proctor & Gamble, Mehoopany
Scott Meuser, Chairman & CEO, Pride Mobility Products Corp., Exeter
Michael Pearson, President, Union Packaging, Yeadon
Jim Rutkowski Jr., Vice President, Industrial Sales & Manufacturing Inc., Erie
David Simpson, President, Diamond Manufacturing, Wyoming
Mike Williams, Senior Vice President, United States Steel, Pittsburgh
Helen Yost, President, The Rowland Company, Philadelphia
Ralph Pontillo, President, Manufacturer and Business Association, Erie
David Taylor, Executive Director, Pennsylvania Manufacturer's Association, Harrisburg
Darlene Robbins, President, N.E. PA Manufacturer's and Employers Association, Pottsville
Jack E. Pfunder, President and CEO, Manufacturer's Resource Center, Bethlehem

SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Community & Economic Development