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Women MAKE America is the nation’s marquee program to close the gender gap in manufacturing. WMAworks to foster a 21st-century manufacturing workforce by empowering and inspiring women in the manufacturing industry through recognition, research and leadership, as well as by motivating alumnae to pay it forward by mentoring the next generation. The goal is to shrink the gender gap and increase innovation by building networks and developing skills for women in the industry and to identify and elevate the role models who can inspire the next generation.

Deploying strategies based on in-depth industry research, the Women MAKE America Initiative has empowered, inspired and connected more than 5,000 women and reached more than 20 million people—and we’re just getting started.

Our biggest talent opportunity comes from closing the gender gap in manufacturing, so now is the time to supercharge our proven strategies and reaffirm that Women Make America.

Recognizing and Empowering Women

The 2022 STEP Ahead Honorees have been announced; view their individual profiles below.


STEP Women’s Initiative Chair

The 2022 STEP Chair is Denise Rutherford.

 2022 CHAIR BIO 

Regional Events

STEP Forward events are community-based regional events and engagements.

Online Community

The community provides participants a place to connect, engage and share information and best practices in real time.

Increasing the Workforce to 35% by 2030

The MI’s STEP Women’ Initiative launched the 35×30 campaign to increase women’s percentage of the manufacturing workforce to 35% by 2030. This industry-wide, action-oriented campaign features a best-in-class female to female mentoring program and an alumnae-funded scholarship. It aims to add half a million women to the manufacturing industry by 2030.

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Get in touch to find out more about STEP Ahead Awards and upcoming events