On December 14, 2017, AIChE and ASME co-sponsored a panel presentation on Strengthening Manufacturing’s Heartland—Through Innovation, Standards, Readiness and Supply at the Capitol in Washington D.C., before a gathering of Congressional members and staff; governmental agencies, business executives and academics. AIChE Executive Director June Wispelwey began the briefing by issuing welcoming remarks to the attendees.

Senior staffers and policy analysts from the offices of Senators Coon (DE), Gillibrand (NY), Reed (NY), and Lipinski (IL), as well as other representatives from the heartland states of Michigan, Missouri and Wisconsin attended to learn more about Manufacturing USA in general, and RAPID Manufacturing Institute, in particular.

Karen Fletcher, CEO of RAPID, spoke about how RAPID engages members in the region through key projects and other activities. She stated, “Our goal was to provide context for Process Intensification and the industries in the heartland that can benefit most from improvements in upgrading equipment and methodologies, notably Oil and Gas, Chemicals, Biomaterials and the Pulp and Paper industries.”  

Fletcher was part of a panel which also included Bill Bardin from Dow Chemical Company, Mark Gaalswyk, Founder and Chairman, Easy Energy Systems, Thomas Hedberg, Project Manager, National Institutes of Standards and Technology and T. Bond Calloway, Associate Laboratory Director, Savannah River National Laboratory and AIChE President. 

“Our audience was heavily invested in advancing manufacturing in the USA. They understood the barriers and challenges, and we were determined to show the pathway to solutions and how truly transformative Process Intensification can be” added Fletcher.