GenMet’s Mary Isbister Appointed to NIST MEP National Advisory Board

Mary Isbister, President of GenMet, a custom metal fabricating company located in Mequon, Wisconsin has been named to the National Institute of Standards and Technology Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NIST MEP) Advisory Board ( The NIST MEP Advisory Board is a national board that is legislatively mandated and established pursuant to the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA).

The NIST MEP is a public-private partnership with Centers in all 50 states and Puerto Rico dedicated to serving small and medium-sized manufacturers. Last year, MEP Centers interacted with 25,445 manufacturers, leading to $9.3 billion in new and retained sales, $1.4 billion in cost savings, $3.5 billion in new client investments, and the creation and retention of more than 86,602 jobs.

Isbister joins a team of experts from across the country, including leaders from manufacturing, education, and government. These experts provide a broad perspective to provide advice and guidance to the Manufacturing Extension Partnership. The NIST MEP Advisory Board is expected to assist in identifying proactive actions that will enable small manufacturers to successfully address and implement changes in technology and the business environment in the future.

In Wisconsin, the Wisconsin Center for Manufacturing & Productivity (WCMP), along with the Wisconsin Manufacturing Extension Partnership (WMEP) and the UW-Stout Manufacturing Outreach Center (MOC), provide MEP services. The WCMP connects with manufacturing initiatives throughout the state to provide the resources and expertise necessary for small and medium-sized manufacturers to thrive and stay competitive. Together, the Wisconsin MEP System created more than $4 billion in impact and help to create or maintain more than 16,000 jobs since 1999.

Isbister is passionate about manufacturing’s future and believes the U.S. – and especially Wisconsin – is in great position to flourish. “Manufacturing drives economic health and diversity and the MEP does a terrific job for small and medium-sized manufacturers across the country. I’m honored to be a new member of the MEP National Advisory Board.”

Isbister brings a great background to this board position. She and her husband Eric own GenMet, working on the front lines of manufacturing for almost two decades. In addition, Isbister served on the Secretary of Commerce’s U.S. Manufacturing Council and leads the Milwaukee 7 Next Generation Manufacturing Council. Her background also includes membership on numerous boards, including serving as Chair of the WMEP’s Board.

“Congratulations to my friend Mary Isbister on her new role on the NIST MEP Advisory Board,” added Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch. “Mary is acutely aware of the workforce challenges facing our nation from her time as chair of the Wisconsin Council on Workforce Investment. And she’s personally demonstrated that innovative, outside-the-box solutions can work in her own hiring practices at GenMet. It’s that kind of forward thinking and problem solving that will serve her well as she helps lead manufacturing companies across our country toward even greater prosperity.”

“We are thrilled that Mary Isbister will serve on the MEP National Advisory Board and bring a Wisconsin perspective to their discussions” said Buckley Brinkman, the executive director/CEO of the WCMP. “Mary’s experience and leadership will be a terrific addition to the Board and she will have a major impact on the MEP System.”


The WCMP is a private-public partnership supporting the Wisconsin manufacturing ecosystem and the people making it a vibrant part of the state’s economy. The WCMP is a key strategic partner of the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation and a member of the NIST Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership network, connecting manufacturers with the resources necessary to thrive in the world economy.

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