John F. Miller
Siemens Digital Industries Software
John Miller is senior vice president of mainstream engineering software for Siemens Digital Industries Software. In this role, he is responsible for leading the company’s go-to-market efforts for mainstream engineering products, including Solid Edge and Femap (advanced engineering simulation application), on a global basis. Miller works in partnership with sales, products and marketing to target and develop strategic and geographic growth opportunities in this market. He has more than 23 years’ experience in PLM software. Miller joined the company from Electronic Data Systems where he completed the Engineering Systems Engineer Program and chose to work with Unigraphics for his first full-time assignment. Miller has since held several positions within Siemens Digital Industries Software, most recently serving as vice president of strategy. In that role, he was responsible for establishing strategic context for the business unit globally, business planning, market intelligence, the company’s partner ecosystem, pricing and packaging along with providing coordination of business activities across Siemens Digital Industries Software’s business segments and with digital factory division leadership. Miller holds a bachelor’s degree in manufacturing engineering systems from Kettering University (formerly GMI) and a master’s degree in engineering management from the University of Michigan. He joined the SME Education Foundation in 2015 and serves on its Workforce Development and Strategic Planning committees. SME Member Since 2015
Frank W. Ervin III
Piston Group LLC
Frank Ervin has more than 35 years of experience in government relations, public policy, legislative and regulatory legislation, and rulemaking. Additionally, he has worked to build global business structures in the U.S. and abroad, including Mexico, Japan, South America, Europe and Asia involving a variety of customers. Ervin has led the government relations and business development units of the major automobile manufacturers and Tier 1, 2 and 3 automotive suppliers worldwide. In 2018, he was named to the newly created position of group vice president – government affairs at Piston Group LLC where he is responsible for the organization's government relations and economic development activities. Prior to joining the Piston Group, Ervin served as vice president of specialized minority business enterprise services and executive director of the Detroit Minority Business Development Agency Center at the Michigan Minority Supplier Development Council, overseeing all aspects of the development minority businesses including MBE certification. Previously, he had been the senior director – government affairs at Magna International where he worked with all its business units on matters involving and needing legislative and regulatory relations assistance. Ervin was also responsible for building and maintaining positive company relations with members of Congress, state and local legislators, and officials and their staff to help create a positive leadership image and business climate for Magna International Inc. He holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration and a master’s degree in international business. Ervin is also a Vietnam veteran, as part of his service with the U.S. Navy. He has also served on various boards of directors, such as The Organization for International Investment, Oakland County (MI) Workforce Development and Southeastern Michigan United Way. Presently, Ervin served as a director with the Western Golf Evans Scholarship Foundation. SME Member Since 2021
Andrew M. "Andy" Jones
Seizert Capital Partners
Andy Jones joined Seizert Capital Partners as an investment analyst in September 2009 and became a portfolio manager in June 2012. From August 2008 until joining Seizert Capital Partners, Jones had been employed with Wells Fargo Advisors as a financial advisor in East Lansing, Michigan. He also served as a financial analyst for GMAC Financial Services from April 2007 through August 2008 in Detroit. Prior to joining GMAC, Jones was employed by Douglas C. Lane and Associates Inc., a registered investment advisory firm, located in New York City for a period of three years. Jones received a bachelor's degree with an emphasis in economics from Bucknell University in 2004. SME Member Since 2021
Erica Powell Bell
Erica Powell Bell has spent the past decade of her legal career serving as inhouse counsel in the automotive industry. She currently is the Executive Vice President, General Counsel, Chief Compliance Officer, and Corporate Secretary of Mobex Global. In addition to her professional responsibilities, Erica contributes to the community by serving on various boards including the American Red Cross of Southeastern Michigan where she serves as the chair of the philanthropy committee, Society of Manufacturing Engineers Education Foundation, and the Association of Black Law Alumni (Detroit Mercy Law). She also currently serves on the advisory board for the Metro-Detroit Regional Vehicle Cybersecurity Institute, which is led by the University of Detroit Mercy’s College of Engineering and Science. Erica is a proud member of the Detroit Mercy community having obtained her undergrad and juris doctor from UDM. While in law school, she was the president of Detroit Mercy’s Business Law Association.
Adam Claytor is the CEO and president of Coltrane Logistics, a company he founded in 2019, which offers logistics and warehouse services for the automotive, food/beverage, industrial, agriculture, consumer products and defense industries whose mission is to provide high-paying jobs and internships to area minority communities. Claytor began his career as a business analyst with Nelson Global Products, a designer, manufacturer and distributer of a diverse portfolio of thermal management, acoustic, air and fluid mechanics, and structural solutions. In 2015, he joined TAG Holdings LLC, a holding company whose mission is to create a pipeline of minority entrepreneurs by acquiring and growing manufacturing companies and developing ownership opportunities. As a senior lead analyst and advisor to the chairman and CEO and COO and president, his responsibilities included leading new joint venture business development, strategic partnerships and acquisitions, strategic planning, marketing management, and OEM and supply-chain customer relationship management. Claytor continues to serve as an advisor to the chairman and CEO. In 2019, he was named to the Motor City “Twenty to Watch” sponsored by the Michigan Congressional Black Caucus Delegation to honor industry and community leaders. Before building his business career, Claytor competed as a caddie on the PGA Tour and was a program coordinator for The First Tee of Columbus, a nonprofit he personally benefited from as a youth that provides educational programs to build character, teach life-enhancing values and promote healthy choices through the game of golf. Claytor holds a bachelor’s degree in economics management from Ohio Wesleyan University. He was a four-year varsity golf letter recipient and championship golf competitor. Claytor also serves as a board member for The First Tee of Greater Detroit and The Greater Cleveland Junior Golf Scholarship fund. He was elected to the SME Education Foundation Board of Directors in 2020.
Valerie I. Freeman
Washington Park High School
Valerie Freeman, a manufacturing and robotics pathway teacher at Washington Park High School in Racine, Wisconsin, came to this career in a somewhat unconventional path. Once a native of Pontiac, Michigan, Freeman decided to attend Tennessee State University where she received a bachelor’s degree in electrical and computer engineering. After completing school and working in her field of study, Freeman and her family relocated to Racine, Wisconsin. Once acclimated to Racine, Freeman started an after-school tutoring program in the inner city of Racine at her local church to help students with their STEM classes. The program grew to also help adults earn their GED; it was this program where Freeman found her love of teaching. While Freeman helped many students achieve their goals, she was constantly told by their parents that her talents could serve more young people as a full-time teacher. Hesitant at first, Freeman completed and submitted the application and was hired by Racine Unified School District in 2014. She recently won RUSD’s Encore Award for teaching excellence. SME Member Since 2021
For the past 28 years, Kimberly Green has worked extensively on national, federal and state policy impacting career technical education. Working closely with Congress, the administration and a broad range of stakeholders, she represents the interests of and seeks support for CTE. In addition to this policy work, Green helped establish, implement and grow The National Career Clusters Initiative, the CTE: Learning that Works for America Campaign and Without Limits: A Shared Vision for the Future of CTE — all of which are designed to build visibility and support for CTE, while also raising the bar for CTE by ensuring equity and consistency in the delivery of high-quality programs to learners across the U.S. She also helped to secure the largest philanthropic investment in career readiness/CTE; the New Skills for Youth Initiative and its successor, the New Skills ready network, funded by JPMorgan Chase & Co. invests in systemic, state-level transformation to increase access to high-quality and equitable. Green represents the state CTE directors on a variety of boards and committees including the board of directors for the Manufacturing Skills Standards Council and the national advisory board of the National Career Academy Coalition. She is an accomplished speaker, having presented in all 50 states and is considered a nationally recognized expert in CTE. With the support of Pell Grants and the federal work study program, Green is a graduate of Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations. SME Member Since 2021
Joseph A. “Joe” Kann
Cobble Creek Solutions
Joe Kann is president of Cobble Creek Solutions, a consulting and advisory practice that helps businesses and their investors develop new growth opportunities at the intersection of industrial markets and emerging technologies. Kann joined Rockwell Automation in 1986 as part of its Advanced Technology Laboratory. He worked in a progression of research, commercial and business leadership roles, gaining a variety of global market experiences across a broad range of manufacturing segments. As vice president of Global Business Development, Kann grew the role from a single advisory position to a team of over 40 professionals responsible for driving the company’s strategy development processes, managing strategic partnering programs and supporting acquisitions. He facilitated cross-functional teams in the development of key growth initiatives including machine safety, industrial networking and the “internet of things”; regional initiatives in Europe, Asia and Latin America; and expansions in industries such as oil, gas and mining. Kann and his team oversaw more than 140 partnerships including strategic alliances with Cisco, AT&T, Microsoft and industrial market leaders Fanuc, Endress + Hauser and Panduit, supporting the pursuit and execution of over a dozen acquisitions around the world. He retired from Rockwell in 2017 and subsequently formed Cobble Creek Solutions. His outside activities include serving on the Advisory Board for the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Previous activities include acting as senior advisor for the University of Wisconsin-Madison Industry Working Group for the internet of things, and while at Rockwell, managing the University Partner Program. Kann holds a bachelor’s degree in general engineering from the University of Illinois and a master’s degree in manufacturing systems engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He was elected to the SME Education Foundation Board of Directors in 2018 and currently chairs its Strategic Planning Committee. SME Member Since 1984
Robby Komljenovic joined Acieta as chairman and CEO in 2017. Originally born and educated in Germany, Komljenovic has 34+ years of experience in the machine tool systems industry, serving in leadership positions for almost two decades. Armed with a strong technical background in mechanical and application engineering, he quickly learned the importance of effective business development and culture-based leadership. After moving to the U.S. in 1993, Komljenovic quickly adapted to the American business culture and learned how to manage domestic and global sales expectations, as well as deliver positive P&L results. He has served in several executive roles in three different German machine tool companies located here in the USA. His proven team leadership track record and expertise continues to lead Acieta's relentless drive to deliver cutting-edge automation systems, making manufacturing businesses more competitive in both local and global markets. Throughout his career, Komljenovic has and continues to serve on volunteer boards and committees such as the German American Chamber of Commerce and the Association for Advanced Manufacturing Technology. SME Member Since 2017
Arthur F. McClellan Jr.
Arthur McClellan is director of supplier diversity and development at Lear Corp., a major Tier I automotive supplier. Over the course of his career, McClellan has held a variety of positions including head of supplier diversity at Valeo; managing partner at Diversity in Promotions; director of business development at Rickman Enterprise Group; purchasing manager at General Motors; supplier diversity manager at General Motors; senior buyer at General Motors; purchasing director at the City of Pontiac; and vice president of land acquisition at the Farbman Group. He served as a city councilman for the city of Pontiac from 2003-09. McClellan was elected president of the Pontiac City Council by his colleagues and served in this position from 2006-09. He is currently a member of the board of directors of Habitat for Humanity of Oakland County, CARE House of Oakland County, Michigan Minority Supplier Development Council, Pontiac Alumni Foundation, SME Education Foundation and Detroit Community Schools. McClellan attended the University of Michigan where he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in general studies. McClellan continued his educational pursuits at the University of Michigan and graduated with a master’s degree in urban planning followed by a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Phoenix. SME Member Since 2021
Mark L. Michalski, LSME
Mark L. Michalski was chief operations systems officer - global operations for MKS Instruments. Responsible for strategies in process development, new product introduction and information technologies, he led implementation of the Visual Factory cross-platform solution to data analytics, SPC and shop-floor management visualization. Prior to MKS, Michalski held positions as director of operations at Bel Fuse, vice president of operations at Acumentrics Corp. and senior technical management positions at Zoll Medical and BBN Advanced Computers. Michalski received his education in manufacturing and operations engineering from Northeastern and Lowell Universities. For SME, he has held a wide variety leadership positions, including chapter officer and chair of Boston Chapter 33; chair of the Manufacturing Enterprise Council, Member Council and Chapter Enhancement Committee; member of the International Director/Member Council Nominating Committees and the International Awards, Innovation and Business Development Committees; and SME Education Foundation scholarship reviewer since 2013. Michalski has been the primary speaker at more than 30 SME Leadership Series events throughout the U.S. and is a 2010 SME Award of Merit recipient. Since 2010, Michalski has served on the SME Board of Directors, was the 2019 SME president, and 2020 immediate past president. In 2022 Michalski will be proud to serve as a member of the SME Education Foundation Board of Directors. SME Member Since 1992
Chris Rake is the vice president of programs for FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), a nonprofit dedicated to advancing STEM education using mentor- based research and robotics programs that build science, engineering and technology skills. Rake is a champion of growth for FIRST programs worldwide. He and the programs’ team are responsible for the strategic planning and development of the overall content and experience of FIRST LEGO League, FIRST Tech Challenge and FIRST Robotics Competition, including hosting two annual World Championships. Prior to joining FIRST, Rake had 19 years of experience leading complex cross-team architectures and initiatives in the areas of data acquisition, embedded control and industrial systems as a chief engineer at NI. His background includes board-level design, programmable logic design, firmware design, manufacturing test software design and project management. Outside of work, Rake volunteers as a mentor with FIRST and as a unit leader with the Boy Scouts of America. He received his bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering, with highest honors, from the Georgia Institute of Technology.
Schunk Carbon Technology
Kyle Riegel has spent the first nine years of his career within the wind industry where he is involved in design of products, research and development, and sales and field support. He is currently a field sales engineer with Schunk Carbon Technology focusing on providing advanced carbon solutions for power generations systems. Within his local community, Riegel serves on the Loras College engineering board, advisory council at the University of Northern Iowa’s Manufacturing Engineering Technology program and the Cedar Falls STEM Advisory Council. From 2018-20, he was a representative on the SME Member Council, is an active member of SME Waterloo Chapter 186 and was the recipient of the 2008 SME Education Foundation Family Scholarship recipient. SME Member Since 2008
Human Asset Management
Marion Wells is the founder of Human Asset Management, which focuses on talent development, organizational strategies, program management, and sales and marketing improvement for small-to-midsize manufactures. HAM offers clients an incredible breadth and depth of experience using continuous improvement process tools to drive change in program management and sales and marketing. HAM’s strategies result in manufacturing clients building and strengthening their talent pipeline, their organization and their customer relationships. Wells is a passionate speaker and presents at various manufacturing industry conferences on how to improve workforce culture. Previously, as director of business development, she supported and executed the growth strategy for Harbour Results. During this time, Wells demonstrated the ability to prospect, cultivate and develop new business with laser focus on deliverables. She has diverse experience in manufacturing, purchasing, strategic sales and engineering. Wells is experienced in developing and executing sales strategies that increase revenue, market positioning and brand equity. She has been recognized as a highly productive dependable and efficient customer relationship facilitator. Wells began her career in engineering with Arcelor Mittal Steel (formerly, Inland Steel Industries). At Inland Steel, where she spent 17 years, Wells held over 10 different positions including production, quality, technical services, customer service, research and product development, account sales and new business development and marketing. She earned a bachelor's degree from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, with a focus on metallurgical engineering. Wells also has postgraduate experience from Northwestern University. She served on the board of directors of the Automotive Women Alliance Foundation and currently serves on its Executive Advisory Council. Wells joined West Michigan Tool and Die’s board of directors in March of 2019, serves as chair of WMTD’s Corporate Governance Committee and is a member of its Management Committee. She was appointed to “MoldMaking Technology” magazine’s Editorial Advisory Board. Wells is a regular industry speaker at a manufacturing conference on the issue of workforce development, diversity and inclusion and talent retention. SME Member Since 2021
JoAnne P. Williams, JD
JoAnne joined Fairfield in 2022 as Senior Vice President for Finance and Administration and holds executive responsibility for planning, development, and management of the University’s financial, physical, and technological resources, and auxiliary services. A native of Costa Rica, Ms. Williams’ personal and professional experiences have provided her opportunities to live and work in countries around the world - most notably in Central America and Europe — as well as here in the United States. Ms. Williams holds a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering and has worked in multiple applied engineering, software development, and finance and administrative roles for Citgo, General Motors, Unigraphics Solutions, and other firms prior to bringing her talents to higher education. After obtaining her law degree at University of Detroit Mercy School of Law, Ms. Williams followed her lifelong interest in higher education to roles in academia at Clemson, Cornell, Rutgers, and Columbia universities and others.