The Chicago Chapter was named the Chapter of the Year at the 2011 Annual Convention of the American Mold Builders Association (AMBA) in Las Vegas. The Chicago Chapter was the original Chapter of the AMBA, and currently has 38 member companies. The Chicago Chapter received a check from Progressive Components for $5,000 to use in its efforts to promote mold making and the mold manufacturing industry in its area.
The Chicago Chapter received this award for its tireless efforts to promote the trade and encourage young people to enter the industry. “We understand the workforce is getting older and we need young people to enter the trade if we are to keep this industry strong for the next generations,” said Wayne Sikorcin, owner of Craftsman Tool & Mold Inc. and president of the Chicago Chapter.
Educating its members and getting them involved with government affairs is a big focus of the Chicago Chapter. “One of the Chapter’s goals is to get its members involved with their legislators, both state and federal, and have them invite their legislators to visit their plants to see first-hand what mold manufacturing is all about and understand how vital it is to the U.S. manufacturing,” said Karen Norville, the Chicago Chapter coordinator. “Several of our Chapter members have done that, and one even got more work from it because the legislator knew someone who knew a company that needed a mold, so it’s been successful.”
The Chicago Chapter had a large number of members attend the Fall Conference in Washington, D.C. As a result of these efforts, a few legislators have attended the Chicago Chapter meetings, such as Illinois State Representative Michael G. Connelly (R) and Congressional Representative Donald A. Manzullo (R-IL). “Both of these men are pro-manufacturing, and we want them to know that what they’re doing for us means a lot to us and we’re behind them,” said Sikorcin.
The Chicago Chapter just awarded its first “Mold Your Career” award. “We wanted to give a scholarship to someone working in the industry for at least one year at a Chicago member company and help those who have chosen mold making as a career,” said Sikorcin. DGI Supply, a tool seller, donated one-third of the $1,000 gift certificate to purchase tools at DGI. Michael Gach of Dynasty Mold Builders was the recipient. “The industry needs younger workers and we’re hoping this might motivate people to enter the trade,” he added.
Sikorcin said that the Chapter will choose to distribute the $5,000 award at its next Chapter meeting to be held at the Amerimold trade show. “We will have five learning institutions named and the members will decide where to donate the money,” said Sikorcin. “I want to thank Progressive Components, who is constantly backing us in our efforts here in Chicago.” For information on joining the AMBA, visit www.amba.org