WASHINGTON, -  Today, The Manufacturing Institute will honor 130 women at the Women in Manufacturing STEP Ahead Awards at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, D.C.

The awards dinner gala will be keynoted by GoldieBlox Founder and CEO Debbie Sterling. Attendees will also hear inspiring stories from Sheila Tierney, vice president, Global Procurement, Ingersoll Rand, STEP chairwoman; Heidi Alderman, senior vice president, Petrochemicals, BASF Corporation, STEP vice chairwoman; Jennifer McNelly, executive director, The Manufacturing Institute; Jay Timmons, president and CEO, National Association of Manufacturers; Emerging Leader Nichole Williams, lean six sigma black belt, Cooper Tire & Rubber Company; and Honoree Valerie Young, vice president, International Supply Chain, 3M Company.

Before the awards, the honorees and emerging leaders visited Capitol Hill to meet with Congressman Tom Reed (R-NY), Congressman Tim Ryan (D-OH), Congresswoman Suzan DelBene (D-WA), Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI), Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), and Congressman Tom Emmer (R-MN). The 130 women also participated in personal and leadership development sessions throughout the day and will continue through Friday, April 22. 

The Women in Manufacturing STEP (Science, Technology, Engineering and Production) Ahead Awards honor women who have demonstrated excellence and leadership in their careers and represent all levels of the manufacturing industry, from the factory-floor to the C suite. The STEP Ahead Awards program will highlight each Honoree’s story, including their leadership and accomplishments in manufacturing. The chosen women are asked to make a pledge to help advance women in manufacturing and promote the importance of a diverse workforce. Through this pledge, women commit to advocating for the manufacturing industry, mentoring young women, engaging employees resource groups to generate ideas and share best practices, promoting personal development, and leading as an ambassador for manufacturing education.

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