For Immediate Release
Date: February 5, 2014
Allison Tapert, Promotions & Marketing Coordinator
The Pacific Northwest Aerospace Alliance Announces Aerospace Industry Excellence Awards
LYNNWOOD, WA – February 10, 2014 – Pacific Northwest Aerospace Alliance, presented five aerospace industry awards including Aerospace Company of the Year, Aerospace Executive of the Year, the Inspire Award, and two Chairman’s Awards during its 13th Annual Aerospace Conference in Lynnwood. The awards were presented after a keynote address by Gov. Jay Inslee.
Inspire Award: Silicon Forest Electronics, Vancouver, WA
PNAA’s Inspire Award honors through recognition, business leaders in our aerospace community who have shown exceptional creativity in working with schools to share the activities of manufacturing in an overall effort to cultivate interest and skills leading to aerospace careers.
PNAA Treasurer Tom Sanger presented the Inspire Award to Silicon Forest Electronics for reaching out to local schools and assisting in developing, organizing, and participating in STEM Fest 2013, a three day festival designed to give high school students business experience using Science, Technology, Engineering and Math skills. Silicon Forest Electronics CEO Frank Nichols accepted the award on behalf of the Vancouver, Washington based electronics manufacturing company.
Silicon Forest Electronics employees worked with 21 high school students that participated in “hands-on” activities intended to simulate Design Engineering while being "coached" by members of their technical team. Mentors helped students understand and complete the “real world” tasks set before them. After 3 days of interaction between students and Silicon Forest Electronics mentors – the light bulb of inspiration was switched on, and 21 more young people are now likely to seek careers in the aerospace industry.
Partnering with local schools is a key component in building the workforce of tomorrow. Silicon Forest Electronics has illustrated exemplary outreach, engaging activities and dedication to the task setting an excellent example for other aerospace companies to follow. In a word, they’re “inspirational.”
Aerospace Executive of the Year: Jon Buccola, CEO Greenpoint Technologies
This award is presented annually to the aerospace executive that has made a significant contribution to the advancement of the Pacific Northwest Aerospace Industry.
PNAA Secretary John Graham presented the Executive of the Year Award to Jon Buccola for his management and leadership of Kirkland based aircraft interiors company Greenpoint Technologies.
According to Graham, “Jon Buccola has made significant contributions to the aerospace community. He has balanced the profit motive with the business motive and has made Greenpoint Technologies a fun place where people want to work.”
As Greenpoint Technologies’ co-founder, Buccola has built the corporate culture into a dynamic and rewarding provider of high quality, custom VIP aircraft interiors. He has assembled a team of the industries’ finest leaders, engineers, mechanics and craftsmen. His entrepreneurial vision has grown the culture into a thriving multi-company organization by adding extensive engineering, certification, manufacturing and heavy maintenance capabilities.
Greenpoint Technologies started in 1988 with two employees and now employees over 430 companywide.It is a premier Boeing Business Jet Completion Center, creating custom aircraft products and VIP completions exclusively for Boeing aircraft. It has a 99% on-time completion rate.
Aerospace Company of the Year: Electroimpact, Mukilteo, WA
This award is presented annually to the aerospace company located in the Pacific Northwest which exhibits exceptional organizational characteristics while continually maintaining a strong competitive posture, thus raising the industry standard for the Pacific Northwest
PNAA Chairman JC Hall presented the Aerospace Company of the Year Award to Mukilteo based Electroimpact for its unique style of operation, cutting edge tooling and for bringing bold ideas to fruition.
According to Hall, “Electroimpact has worked to improve the aerospace industry under the visionary leadership of company founder Peter Zieve, who believes in removing all barriers from his engineers. Zieve’s unique leadership style allows his engineers to drive the design, manufacturing, installation and service of the technology they create -- keeping them at the forefront of aerospace innovation which furthers the industry as a whole.”
Electroimpact’s unique approach has led to a steady stream of customers looking for tooling solutions, and has made it a “haven” for engineers looking to escape the bureaucracy of more traditional aerospace firms. From its humble beginnings on the second floor office behind University Village, Zieve has watched his company grow to become the largest integrator of aircraft assembly lines in the world. Its customer base includes Airbus, Boeing, Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Fuji Heavy Industries, Spirit Aerospace, Vought, Northrop-Grumman, Israeli Aircraft Industries, and Xi’an Aircraft of China among others.
“We knew we were doing something exciting,” said Zieve. “But the world didn’t see the excitement. Now that we’ve grown, now you too can see the excitement that we’ve always had.”
The company now boasts over 450 employees in Mukilteo, and has a global standing with engineering offices in both the U.K. and China.
Electroimpact’s leadership and employees are actively invested in inspiring youth into aerospace engineering and manufacturing careers – especially when it comes to composite materials and robotics. The company has mentored AIAA’s Young Professionals, donates to the University of Washington’s Mechanical Engineering Formula SAE shop that supports student projects, and worked with the award winning “Wookies” Robotics Team from Lake Stevens, WA.
PNAA Chairman’s Awards: Linda Lanham and Larrry Sowa
The Chairman’s Award is chosen by PNAA’s Chairman JC Hall to recognize individuals and companies that raise the industry standard of the Aerospace Industry in the Pacific Northwest. PNAA has chosen to honor two recipients this year:
Linda Lanham, Aerospace Futures Alliance
PNAA Board Member John Monroe presented one of two Chairman’s Awards to Linda Lanham, Executive Director of Aerospace Futures Alliance for her excellence, dedication and service to the aerospace industry. After 33 years in the industry, Lanham retired from Boeing, but according to Monroe, “could not become a couch potato.” She quickly found herself at the helm of Aerospace Futures Alliance serving as Executive Director.
During her tenure she has been a tireless advocate for the aerospace industry creating a positive business climate for the aerospace industry through legislation, workforce training and improved transportation. She is well known throughout the region, but especially in the halls of Olympia where she has helped secure millions of dollars in funding for facilities in Renton, Everett, and Spokane. Her efforts have helped assure aerospace jobs both now and in the future throughout the state of Washington.
Lanham personifies a lifetime of distinguished work and service to benefit the Washington Aerospace Cluster.
According to Orion Aerospace CEO, John Theisen, “Linda is recognized and respected by everyone who knows her as an advocate for intelligent, practical policy to ensure that Washington remains the leading aerospace supplier in the country and the world.”
Larry Sowa, Human Strategies Consulting
PNAA Chairman JC Hall presented the final Chairman’s Award to Larry Sowa, Principal of Human Strategies Consulting, for his management of the PNAA Scholarship Program. In four short years, Sowa has created a scholarship program that has provided nearly $90,000 worth of scholarships to 60 students at 10 colleges and universities. His efforts and contributions from the industry help to ensure that the next generation of aerospace workers will receive the education that the Pacific Northwest Aerospace industry needs.
According to Sowa, “It takes a village to make this happen.” This year, 17 sponsors gave $33,450 to provide scholarships for 22 students at nine colleges and universities. “It’s not just about the money. Here is a chance to give them a little boost,” Sowa said. “This boost allows them to continue their studies and to join the aerospace industry.”
Sowa is a Seattle based executive search consultant with over 27 years of experience. During his career, he has matched hundreds of talented individuals with organizations in a broad range of industries and the public sector on both sides of the U.S.-Canadian border.
The Pacific Northwest Aerospace Alliance (PNAA) has been promoting the growth and success of the aerospace industry in the Northwest for over 13 years. Its primary purpose is to help grow and maintain a viable aerospace industry in the region. This is accomplished through frequent educational and networking events and informing members and participants of important industry changes and business opportunities.
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