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Made in America Matters

I spent most of my career in manufacturing organizations. There is something really satisfying about seeing a bunch of raw materials go in one end of a building and come out the other as huge rolls of paper, pallets of shingles or a tractor.

There is also a sense of camaraderie in those facilities that I never experienced in other industries. Some days I left hot, sweaty and dirty, from climbing catwalks and walking around huge machines running at high temperatures to do safety assessments or speak to with an employee. But at the end of the day, there was always a sense of satisfaction.

Don Bauchner has the same passion for the manufacturing sector. He sold his own successful company, Vactron, which made vacuum excavation equipment. Then he decided to dedicate his energy to unify the manufacturing sector and promote goods that are made in America.

His work to date is culminating in the first Made in America trade show at the Indianapolis Convention Center October 3-6th. The event already has several hundred exhibitors who manufacture everything from brushes to bicycles. Hoping to encourage business to business relationships and well as business to consumer, the focus is on highlighting the innovation and breadth of goods manufactured in the United States.

For the first time in decades, the country has seen a net increase in American manufacturing jobs. According to Rose Tennant, a spokeswoman for the conference, keeping the focus on American manufacturers and buying American made goods will help keep the momentum.

Country singer, show participant, and American manufacturer, John Rich demonstrates how one American manufacturer can support others. By keeping the supply chain at home:

One often thinks that manufacturing is the province of men. Not so fast. Another show attendee, Barbara Creighton is the founder and CEO of Sarati International. After a career of working for others, she was in her 50’s when she became interested in bioidentical hormones. She wanted a natural product to treat the symptoms of menopause.

Her research pushed her to establish her own company to make the products so she would have control over the product standards. She established the company in 1995 and today it serves a niche market in private label skincare. Her company makes hundreds of formulations and employs three chemists for custom formulations.

One of her joys is helping other entrepreneurs. She was inspired by the founder of Mary Kay cosmetics who also founded a company in her 50’s out of her garage. She is proud of her ability to provide jobs in her community and will be on the Women in Manufacturing panel at the conference.

There is a service economy, but the country needs to make products to continue to thrive. Made in America is supporting this premise by bringing businesses and consumers together to highlight American made products. There is still time and space for additional exhibitors who make great products here at home.

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