An Introduction…. Interim Executive Director Chris Conrardy

From the Desk of Interim Executive Director Chris Conrardy

My name is Chris Conrardy, and I am humbled and delighted to have been asked by the ALMMII Board of Directors to step in and serve as the interim Executive Director while a search is conducted for a permanent Executive Director to succeed Larry Brown.

By way of background, I have worked in manufacturing technology innovation for over 30 years, including the last 10 as the Chief Technology Officer and Vice President of Strategic Initiatives at EWI, one of the LIFT founders. Technical innovation is absolutely essential to global manufacturing competitiveness, and I am passionate about the LIFT mission to mature and transition new light-weighting technologies while preparing a workforce with the skills necessary to thrive in the factories of the future.

While I have been watching LIFT from afar over the past four years, I have been amazed looking at the accomplishments from January alone. Those accomplishments include:

  • Bringing in Volkswagen Group of America as LIFT’s first automaker member
  • Seeing the first several graduates from LIFT’s “Operation Next” program, supporting separating military men and women
  • Announcing the completion of our project with Ricardo Defense LLC to upfit 10 Michigan National Guard Humvees with their optimized Electronic Stability Control and Antilock Braking Systems, which could reduce fatal rollovers by 74 percent
  • Launching the MakerMinded platform in the Detroit Public Schools Community District and hosting 150 middle and high school students to celebrate the launch

It is obvious to me that the foundation has been laid for a world-class institute, centered in the Motor City and networked across the country. There is no place in the world like LIFT – with the capabilities in house, both in equipment and human resources, combined with the nationally renowned experts in lightweight metals manufacturing and education and workforce development.

I look forward to helping this institute grow and sharing more accomplishments with you in the near future.