“The South Carolina Manufacturers Alliance is the voice for manufacturing in South Carolina and women, who play a significant role in our industry, are a critical part of that voice. In launching this event, it was important to include not only industry participation, but also educators and students to provide the opportunity for them to hear more about careers for women in manufacturing,” said Sara Hazzard, President & CEO of SCMA.
The event featured a keynote speech by 2019 SCMA Woman of the Year Award recipient – Lou Kennedy, CEO & Owner of Nephron Pharmaceuticals. Sara Hazzard commented, “Lou Kennedy is the inaugural recipient of SCMA’s South Carolina Woman of the Year Award. Lou exemplifies what it means to be a leader in manufacturing. Her commitment to her company, employees, her local community and the state of South Carolina is an example to us all.”
“I am blown away to receive the first ever SCMA Woman of the Year Award,” said Lou Kennedy, CEO & Owner of Nephron Pharmaceuticals. “I believe strongly in the success of South Carolina, the importance of manufacturing, and growing the presence of women in our industry. I am humbled and honored!”
Attendees of the Forum were invited to tour Nephron Pharmaceuticals’ West Columbia facility and participated in a panel discussion on “Opportunities and Challenges: Perspectives on Careers for Women in Manufacturing.” The impressive list of panelists included:
- April Allen, Director, State Government Affairs, Continental
- Kristen Blanchard, Vice President, External Corporate Affairs, Nutramax Laboratories
- Giff Daughtridge, Vice President, General Manager for Nucor Steel Berkeley
- Kim Kent, President, CEO of Kentwool
- Page Myers, Plant Manager, Sage Automotive Interiors.
In addition to honoring the role female industry leaders have in the Palmetto State, SCMA’s women’s forum allowed attendees to learn more about career opportunities and leadership tracks for women in manufacturing. Industry attendees were also joined by educators and students. The inaugural event drew considerable support from businesses and female leaders across South Carolina, with the event selling out in less than two days after being announced.
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