SOUTHFIELD, Mich. — September 21, 2023 — Society Of Manufacturing Engineers (SME), the nonprofit committed to accelerating new manufacturing technology adoption and building North America’s talent and capabilities, announced the recent appointment of two of its leaders to national boards of directors in the manufacturing industry.
Appointed were Toni Neary, director of community engagement and workforce innovation for SME, who was named to the board for the National Coalition of Advanced Technology Centers, and Greg Surtman, workforce development manager for Tooling U-SME, who was named to the board for The Uniquely Abled Project.
“Toni and Greg were no doubt chosen for their passion for developing people and expertise in workforce development,” said SME’s Chief Workforce Development Officer, Jeannine Kunz. “Their insight, experience and counsel to these two organizations will help them to thrive, which ultimately will benefit our national manufacturing workforce.”
Neary and Surtman join other SME leaders who are committed to volunteering on the boards of partner organizations, which SME collaborates with to support workforce development.
Neary serves as SME’s director of community engagement and workforce innovation, leading efforts to grow diversity, equity, inclusion and access in the manufacturing industry as well as highlighting and strengthening successful such programs throughout the United States.
She works directly with communities to build, fill, and sustain viable manufacturing ecosystems. Throughout her career, she has been a passionate advocate for career and technical education — engaging, developing and helping to grow advanced manufacturing programs through various roles. Neary’s self-professed goal is to combine workforce partners, strategies and best practices to unite and uplift individuals, communities and organizations. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in marketing from the University of Toledo.
“It is an honor to rejoin the NCATC Board representing SME, to work side by side with the most innovative advanced technology centers in the country,” Neary said. “The leadership, growth and initiatives that NCATC works toward is significant, and I am excited to roll my sleeves up and do good work with these community and technical college leaders from around the country.”
NCATC is an Affiliated Council of the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC), catalyzing a network of higher education and industry-led strategic partner resources that advocates, advises, and promotes the use of advanced technology applications to enhance economic and workforce development programs and services.
With over 160 members from community and technical colleges, universities, career and technical education (CTE) high schools, adult education organizations and the corporate community, NCATC provides great networking opportunities at their Fall Conference every year.
Surtman is the workforce development manager at Tooling U-SME, where he is responsible for leading the team that supports Tooling U-SME’s 900+ partner network. This includes academic institutions (high schools, colleges and universities), manufacturing extension partnerships, workforce and economic development agencies, manufacturing associations and community-based organizations. His focus is addressing the skills gap by creating better alignment between the educational ecosystem and employer demand.
Surtman has more than 26 years of workforce development experience during his career including Tooling U-SME, manufacturing companies and academic institutions. He holds a bachelor’s in business administration from the University of Toledo, is a Lean Six Sigma Green Belt, and is a Certified DiSC Facilitator.
“I am honored to be part of a group that’s focused on providing hope and life-changing opportunities for the uniquely abled and their families,” Surtman said.
The Uniquely Abled Project (UAP) is a groundbreaking, first-of-its-kind collaboration with the business community. Its focus is the creation of vocational opportunities for the uniquely abled by matching their unique abilities to jobs in demand. It is different from other jobs programs because it has a business conversation with companies and provides an extraordinary solution to a need that businesses have. UAP is not asking them to “help the handicapped.”
The organization enables those with a diagnosis to have the possibility of a meaningful career providing income, dignity, and purpose while filling a major need for employers.
Kunz said, these SME leaders – and the organizations they provide volunteer leadership support for – do the hard, innovative work of addressing national challenges in workforce development which exemplifies the importance of these collaborations.
Posted: September 21, 2023
Source: Society Of Manufacturing Engineers (SME)