WCMP Announces Election of Board Leadership, Re-election of Board Members, and New Board Member

MADISON, WI – At its recent annual meeting, the Wisconsin Center for Manufacturing & Productivity (WCMP) elected board leadership, re-elected Jeffrey Clark and Rick Steinke to the WCMP board of directors, and welcomed UW-Stout Chancellor Katherine Frank to the board.

Erica Grant, Star Blends, was elected to a second term as board chair; Jeffrey Clark, Waukesha Metal Products, was elected vice-chair; Sheku Kamara, Milwaukee School of Engineering, will serve as secretary; and David Brukardt, was elected audit committee chair.

Grant is general manager at Star Blends, a feed manufacturer specializing in custom feeds for dairy producers. Prior to joining Star Blends, Grant spent 18 years in the mining and mineral processing industry, most recently in sand mining as the vice president of Research and Development for Badger Mining Corporation. She has a degree in Chemical Engineering from Michigan Technological University.

Clark is the chief executive officer of Waukesha Metal Products, a leading contract metal forming company which operates world-class manufacturing facilities in Sussex, Grafton, and San Luis Potosí, Mexico. His leadership helped reinvigorate the business and achieve double digit growth in revenues and profitability.  Clark is active in the industry and community, serving on the boards of directors for the Sussek Machine Company, M3 Insurance, and GPS Education Partners. He also serves on the Precision Metalforming Association Education Foundation and the Waukesha County Business Alliance Manufacturing Executive Council and is a member of the Wisconsin Apprenticeship Consortium.

Kamara, dean of applied research at the Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE), holds the RTAM Master Level Certificate on additive manufacturing from SME and is a 2008 recipient of the prestigious Karl O. Werwath Engineering Research Award from MSOE.  He spent 20 years at MSOE’s Rapid Prototyping Center, developing additive manufacturing solutions for students, faculty, and industry.  In his capacity as dean of applied research, Kamara oversees the five centers within the MSOE Applied Technology Center.

Brukardt leads the Office of Corporate Relations and Economic Engagement for the University of Wisconsin System. The office was initially developed in 2012 to connect UW student, staff, and faculty talent, innovation, and entrepreneurial energy with state businesses and communities in the spirit of the Wisconsin Idea. Brukardt serves in a joint appointment with the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation. He earned his master’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Maryland and his undergraduate degree from Marquette University. He is a graduate of the ABA National Banking School in Fairfield, Conn., and is a fourth-generation Wisconsin native.

As vice president of operations at Sentry Equipment Corporation in Oconomowoc, Steinke is responsible for materials management, purchasing, inventory, production planning, manufacturing and product engineering, and all factory operations at Sentry Equipment’s Oconomowoc and Houston facilities. Sentry Equipment is an employee-owned company that provides sampling and analysis products and services for a variety of industries around the world.  Steinke serves as a board advisor for GPS Education Partners and is also a member of the Waukesha County Business Alliance Manufacturing Executive Council.

Additionally, Katherine Frank, Chancellor, University of Wisconsin – Stout replaces Robert Meyer, UW-Stout Chancellor Emeritus on the WCMP board of directors.

Frank became the eighth chancellor of the University of Wisconsin-Stout in March 2020, after a distinguished career as an administrator and faculty member. Before her appointment as chancellor, Chancellor Frank served from 2016 in two roles at Central Washington University in Ellensburg, Wash., as Provost and Vice President of Academic and Student Life and Vice President of Academic Innovation. She also held the rank of Professor of English. Chancellor Frank, the first female leader of UW-Stout, grew up in Colorado and has a bachelor’s degree in English from Bates College, Lewiston, Maine. She has master’s and doctorate degrees in English from the University of Washington, Seattle. Frank’s research interests include Romantic and Victorian English Literature, rhetoric and composition, the scholarship of teaching, and academic leadership.

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The Wisconsin Center for Manufacturing & Productivity (WCMP), a member of the NIST MEP National Network, is a public-private partnership that connects Wisconsin manufacturers with the resources necessary to thrive and compete in a global economy.  Collaborating with the UW-Stout Manufacturing Outreach Center (MOC) and the Wisconsin Manufacturing Extension Partnership (WMEP), the WCMP helps small and medium-sized manufacturers across the state grow and thrive in an increasingly challenging business environment.

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