Engaging the Workforce of Tomorrow


The statistics would be hilarious if they weren’t so staggering. The situation, laughable if it wasn’t so sobering. As you are reading this, our nation faces a Trillion (yep…that’s a ‘T’) dollars in student loan debt while at this very same moment, we’re confronted with an entrenched (both persistent and pervasive) skills gap. People out there need work, and yet the US currently has well over 3 Million unfilled job openings. Even household brand name companies have had open skilled-labor shortages for decades. That’s decades…

…We will propose a kick-off of sorts this Friday at FCMA’s 2014 Annual Summit. FCMA seeks to actively fill the skills gap many North Florida manufacturer’s face in placing our present and future workforce members into currently existing STEM-reliant careers at all levels. No one is going to do this for us. First Coast manufacturers have to lead the way. It’s our job to promote and challenge the public’s perception of our employment offerings, to help our community realize the solutions we provide.

We at FCMA are looking to partner with North Florida educators to help students, administration and faculties realize the many advantaged employment opportunities awaiting them in local STEM-related fields. These employment offerings span academic strata from entry-level positions and skilled-labor openings right up through graduate engineering and science level careers. There are jobs for everyone.

In this spirit of cooperation, we’d like to invite you and all representatives of regional industry to join invited students, faculty and administrators from North Florida educational institutions for a panel discussion I’ll be moderating at our Summit this Friday, October 3rd at the Ritz-Carlton in Amelia Island.

Allow us to provide the concrete proof to ALL present the definitive possibilities to partner in our common goal to elevate North Florida’s workforce stature and employment potential. Our aim is a lasting relationship for the betterment of our entire First Coast community. We’d welcome your inclusion in this exciting, synergistic vision of a mutually benefiting society. Hope to see you there!

Click here to read entire article.

FCMA will also being discussing this topic at our October workshop.


Welcome to…

Engineering Technical Resources
Contact: Jeff Farah, COO
Phone: (904) 537-2818
6440 Southpoint Pkwy, Ste 300, Jacksonville, FL 32257

Sponsor: Abe Alangadan, Vistakon

NSC Technologies
Contact: Trey McCormick, Regional Account Manager
Phone: (904) 316-8405
660 Mt. Vernon Ave, Portsmouth, VA 23707

…a worldwide company providing augmentation services to diversified industries, including shipbuilding and repair, the U.S. Department of Energy and power, commercial construction and industrial construction industries.

Sponsor: FCMA

The Weitz Company
Contact: Raymond Chin, Project Manager
Phone: (904) 386-2690
6622 Southpoint Dr. S, Jacksonville, FL 32216

…a team of design engineering, project management, and construction professionals solely dedicated to delivering the best solutions for industrial customers.

Sponsor: Ben Davis, Now Hiring Heroes

2014 FCMA Summit & Excellence in Manufacturing Awards

The 2014 FCMA Summit and Excellence in Manufacturing Awards that will be held on October 2-3, 2014 at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Amelia Island. Click here for more information.


Manufacturing Day 2014

Soler Palau (pictured right) is preparing for the National Manufacturing Day on October 3. Manufacturing Day and its mission to familiarize non-manufacturing audiences with contemporary manufacturing, particularly students, by giving manufacturers an occasion to open their doors to the public. Click here for more information.

New Member Orientation

FCMA’s New Member Orientation is held at least once every month and it is not limited to just the New Members. FCMA offers this orientation to your employees who you want to be active in FCMA.

When: Thursday, October 9
Time: 8:30 AM – 9:30 AM
Location: FCMA office (1615 Huffingham Road, Suite 2)
Please contact Maria to sign up.


Summit Follow-Up: Engaging Tomorrow’s Workforce Workshop

Save the Date - This month’s Workforce Development Workshop will be a follow up on the FCMA Summit Panel Discussion - Engaging Tomorrow’s Workforce on Wednesday, October 22 from 7:30-9:30AM in the FCMA training room (1615 Huffingham Road, Suite 2). Stay tuned for more information. Contact Sherri to sign up.


Community Relations Committee

NOTE: The October Community Relations Committee meeting has been moved to Tuesday, October 14 at 11:00AM at the FCMA office.

October 28 at Gerdau


Our October General Meeting will be held on TUESDAY, October 28 from 4:00-6:00 PM at Gerdau, located at 16770 Rebar Road in Baldwin. Gerdau is one of the largest producers of reinforcing steel in the United States. The Company is also a major supplier of merchant bars, wire rod, nails, welded wire mesh, railroad spikes, structural shapes, and pilings.

Thank you to our refreshment sponsor Briggs Equipment!


Thank you to Pine Castle for hosting out September General Meeting. Pine Castle’s mission is to enrich the lives of people challenged with developmental and acquired disabilities by providing the opportunity to learn, work, and live in our community. They are the largest regional supplier of survey stakes, a manufacturer of industrial mops for many government agencies, and an assembly contractor.

If any FCMA members are interested in touring Pine Castle during their operation hours, you are welcome to attend one of their Pine Castle Experience tours. Please RSVP to Cliff Evans. Tour dates are: October 14 noon, 16 9:00AM; November 11 noon, 20 9:00AM; December 9 noon, 18 9:00AM.

Thank you to our refreshment sponsor TECO Peoples Gas!

Click here to view more photos from the meeting.

Russ Henderlite with Peterson Academies received FCMA’s Teacher Recognition for his efforts in engaging students in the Automation and Production Technology Program at Peterson.

Recent Development On Hiring Criteria and Work Rules Workshop

Bill Andrews with GrayRobinson presented on recent developments from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, National Labor Relations Board and other government agencies affecting the hiring process, and the expansion of employee rights in the work place to a packed house. If you have any questions about this topic, please contact Sherri.

Councilman Richard Clark was our guest last month. As Chairman of the Finance Committee, he shared his concerns about the budget and issues that still need to be addressed (i.e., pension). Special thanks to American Enterprise Bank for hosting this meeting. Next month’s meeting will be a “road trip” visiting the County Commission meetings of Putnam and Clay and receiving October’s Manufacturing Month proclamations. If you are interested in joining us at any of these presentations, please contact Debbie.

EHS Committee

Thank you to Kristina Nelson and Bill Finger of Finger Nelson & Maguire for last month’s presentation. The topic was on Environmental Restrictive Covenants—an overview of a popular closure method for contaminated sites. Click here for the presentation. The October meeting will feature an Industrial Pretreatment Update off-site at JEA.

Professional Progress

Professional Progress celebrated graduation with a dinner at the River Club last month. This is the 18th year of this leadership program and the class will soon gear up for 2015 planning. If you are interested in reserving space for one of your employees, we encourage you to sign up early since class size is limited to 25. For additional information on the program, click here. Click here for the nomination form for the Class of 2015.

Florida Trade Grant

Did you know… Through the Florida TRADE Grant prospective manufacturing employees are receiving industry certifications at FSCJ. Click here for further information. If you have questions, contact Mike Collins at FSCJ. We are also interested in any intern opportunities at your facility—please contact Sherri in the FCMA to office.


ACTS… has become a MEC Qualified Partner by completing the required training proven to produce expert facilitators that can deliver winning MEC sessions every time.

Advanced Disposal… hired Susan Wilburn as South region sales manager, overseeing a team of sales managers across four states.

Auld & White Constructors… promoted Terry Durand-Stuebben to vice president.

BBVA Compass Bank… hired Mark Carden as senior vice president in the North Florida commercial middle market group.

Courtyard by Mariott… has established a corporate rate for FCMA Members. This rate is now available in the hotel reservation system for any FCMA members, guests, or associates in need of hotel accommodations. Click here for more information.

Constangy, Brooks & Smith… had six attorneys from the Jacksonville office listed in The Best Lawyers in America 2015 and received three Top Listed designations in labor and employment law.

CSX Transportation… launches emergency response app. Click here for more information.

Danis Construction… has been awarded a 3-year Continuing Contract with fellow FCMA member CSX Transportation. This contract is for projects that CSX has throughout its vast territories.

Ellis & Associates… welcomes
Lee S. Bienkowski, PhD, P.G., CEM to the team as Senior Geologist in the Environmental Engineering Department.

Fleet Readiness Center Southeast… artisans and engineers are leading the way in additive manufacturing, a new technology that uses 3D modeling to create prototyping of aircraft components, fixtures and tools. Click here for more information.

Foley & Lardner… had eleven attorneys from the Jacksonville office listed in The Best Lawyers in America 2015.

FordHarrison… had two attorneys from the Jacksonville office listed in The Best Lawyers in America 2015.

Holland & Knight… hired Jason Havens as senior counsel in the firm’s private wealth services group.

The LBA Group… promoted Mary Harrell to tax director, Emily Cornaire to senior manager, Tina Dryden to senior tax accountant, Anne Dalton to senior accountant, and Michael Scully to staff accountant II.

Paul Davis Restoration… hired Robert Hamby as operations manager.

University of North Florida… Departments of Chemistry and Physics were awarded a grant from the National Science Foundation’s Major Research Instrumentation program.

Wells Fargo… would like to share information on Section expense 179 allowance

Do you have something exciting going on at your company? Let Amanda know.