LIFT Adds Two New Board Members

DETROIT – The American Lightweight Materials Manufacturing Innovation Institute, which operates Detroit-based LIFT – Lightweight Innovations For Tomorrow, a Manufacturing USA institute, has named two new members to its Board of Directors.

Karen M. Belans, chief financial officer, Detroit Regional Chamber, and Martin Kinsella, director of business development, Comau, officially begin serving as Directors on the now nine-member board.

The nonprofit public-private partnership develops and deploys advanced lightweight manufacturing technologies, and education and workforce development programs to prepare the advanced manufacturing workforce of the future.

“We are thrilled to welcome Karen and Martin to the ALMMII Board,” said Becky Stewart, ALMMII board chair. “Karen and Martin bring key experience and skills that will be a significant benefit to the board as we evolve in support of LIFT and its business objectives. They have been advocates for the mission of LIFT, as well as the City of Detroit and State of Michigan, and we are looking forward to their insights as we move the institute into the future.”

Belans joined the Detroit Chamber in 1995 and was named its Chief Financial Officer in 1996. In her role, Belans oversees all aspects of financial management, budgeting, auditing and tax planning strategies for the four entities under the Chamber. Over her tenure, she has reversed negative fund balances and maxed out debt lines, completed the implementation of two new general ledger systems, as well as budgeting and membership management databases.

Kinsella, who serves as the chair of the LIFT Education and Workforce Development Executive Committee, joined Comau – a LIFT Gold Member – in 1990. In his role as director of business development, Kinsella is responsible to create and maintain a robust pipeline of new business opportunities for Comau.

More information about LIFT and the Board of Directors can be found at