Top Arizona manufacturing executives shared successes and manufacturers were honored for innovation, sustainability and their contribution to the Arizona economy at the 2019 Arizona Manufacturer of the Year Awards Luncheon held October 3 at the Arizona Biltmore Resort. The awards luncheon was hosted by the Arizona Manufacturers Council and Arizona Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP).


Mark Russell, president of Nikola Motors, a hydrogen-electric semi-truck and powersports manufacturer and energy company, gave a compelling keynote about the company’s big vision for the future of transportation. Nikola has developed a hydrogen fuel cell system that leaves no carbon footprint – the only emission is water. The company’s ambitious plans include building fuel stations to support long-haul transportation contracts, which include the truck, fuel, service, and maintenance.


Stephen Renna, senior vice president and chief banking officer of the Export-Import Bank (EXIM) of the United States, spoke to the audience about the bank's role in facilitating the export of goods and services. EXIM provides trade financing solutions such as export credit insurance and commercial loans to foreign buyers.


The luncheon concluded with an awards ceremony honoring five manufacturers for innovation, sustainability, and excellence in their respective categories. Advocates and legislators were also honored.


Watch the company videos here to learn more about who they are and what they do.


Large Manufacturer of the Year - Benchmark Electronics

Benchmark Electronics is a trusted partner in medical, defense, industrial and high-end telecom sectors, providing its customers with engineering, product development, technology, test, manufacturing and product life-cycle management.

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Medium Manufacturer of the Year - Cassavant Machining

Cassavant is a family-owned manufacturing company that provides machined component parts of all different types to the aerospace and commercial industries.

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Small Manufacturer of the Year - Interface

Interface leads the world in force measurement solutions to the aerospace, automotive, energy, factory automation and medical industries.

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Excellence in Innovation – InsulTech

InsulTech provides custom thermal and acoustic insulation products supported by range of engineering, analysis, prototyping and field services.

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Excellence in Sustainability – SenesTech

SenesTech has developed an innovative method for managing animal populations through fertility control. They focus on developing effective solutions that are grounded in science, proven through research and value people, communities and our environment.

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Advocate of the Year

Dave Garafano leads the Arizona Manufacturing Extension Partnership whose mission is to make every Arizona manufacturer the most successful business it can be.

Dave Garafano, Executive Director, Arizona MEP


Legislator of the Year

Joanne Osborn, Arizona House of Representatives, LD13

Jeff Weninger, Arizona House of Representatives, LD17