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February 7, 2012


Peggy Cartwright
Director of Marketing and Public Relations

Kathy Dutton
Director, Economic Development

For Immediate Release


Chaffey College and the San Bernardino County Workforce Investment Board are hosting the inaugural 2012 Inland Empire Manufacturers Summit to bring local manufacturing leaders and educators together. This sold out event is designed to foster collaboration and opportunities for local manufacturers to discuss accomplishments and challenges. The 2012 Manufacturing Summit will be held on Friday, February 10, 2012 from 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at the DoubleTree Hotel in Ontario, CA.

The 2012 Manufacturing Summit is the first of its kind in the Inland Empire. It is a meeting of innovators, leaders, technologists, politicians, and educators associated with manufacturing in the Inland Empire. "Together we can build a better future," said Pearl Virgen, Chair of the Manufacturing Council of the Inland Empire (MCIE) and Human Resources Manager at Cott Beverages.

"Hosting a manufacturing summit such as this is really important, especially in today's economy," said Sandy Harmsen, Workforce Development Director and Executive Director of the Workforce Investment Board, of the County of San Bernardino. "Each and every manufacturer has faced challenges. This conference is designed to provide manufacturers and businesses that support manufacturing with the resources and networking opportunities to help overcome these challenges and provide ways to help them be more innovative," said Kathy Dutton, Director of Economic Development at Chaffey College.

The underlying theme of the Summit is,
Finding solutions to current and future challenges. The main activities planned include:
  • Executive Breakfast
  • Industry Panel Discussion
  • E=mc2 Awards for Innovation Presentation
  • Networking
  • Exhibits and Resource Fair
  • Keynote Address
Executive Breakfast

Chaffey College Superintendent/President, Dr. Henry Shannon is hosting an Executive Breakfast before the Summit. Local executives and dignitaries were invited to join Dr. Shannon to bring education and business leaders together to discuss workforce needs. "It is important that we listen to our local business leaders," said Dr. Shannon. "Our goal is to match education and training with the needs of the industry," he added. "We all have the same focus, to provide a well-trained workforce and Chaffey College plays a key role in providing quality training and education." At the executive breakfast, C.E. "Gus" Whalen, Jr., Chairman of the Warren Featherbone Foundation will share his story of reinventing his manufacturing company and the keys to being innovative.

Industry Leaders

The inaugural event is expected to attract more than 250 people. Two dynamic manufacturing experts will present keynote addresses: Jack Stewart, President of the California Manufacturers and Technology Association and Peter T. Zierhut, Director of Haas Europe and Special Program Haas Automation, Inc. In addition, distinguished speakers will share valuable insights in a panel discussion. The panel includes seven executives, representing Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc, Kelly Space and Technology, Inc., California Steel Industries, California Manufacturing Technology Consulting, Chaffey College, Arnold Engineering, and the Warren Featherbone Foundation.

E=mc2 Awards for Innovation

In addition, the 2012 Annual "E=mc2 Awards for Innovation" will be presented during the Summit. Three local manufacturers will be honored. The "E=mc2 Awards for Innovation" award categories include:
  • Efficiency - The most innovative in reducing energy use or cost of energy.
  • Effectiveness - The most innovative in marketing.
  • Employment - The most innovative in dealing with workforce issues.
For more information on the 2012 Manufacturing Summit, visit or call 909/652-7664.

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