IACMI-The Composites Institute CEO Craig Blue spoke with national commerce and manufacturing leaders this week during an innovation and partnership event attended by U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of Economic Development, Matt Erskine.

Led by The University of Tennessee’s East Tennessee Area IMCP Initiative, DRIVE!, the one day event included business, education, government and research participants.  Craig Blue led executive leaders on a tour of The Department of Energy’s Manufacturing Demonstration Facility at ORNL and provided on overview of the new $250M Composites Institute based in Knoxville, multi-partner technology projects enabling manufacturing innovation and upcoming Manufacturing Day events that will inspire future manufacturers.  His keynote speech cited numerous examples of success in the IACMI, ORNL and University of Tennessee regional ecosystem of manufacturing innovation.

Matt Erskine was impressed by the MDF and Local Motors tours  and noted the strength in industry partnership enabling new opportunities with science and research. Erskine’s visit to Knoxville is part of a 24 city tour of  designated manufacturing communities.

Read more about the official visit in the KnoxNews Business cover story.