‘An Ode to the Makers of Things’

By December 11, 2005General

Every year at the Council of Manufacturing Associations winter Leadership Conference they give their Leadership Award to one person who has been a true leader for manufacturing over the past year, or in most cases, over a lifetime. And so it has gone in the past to great manufacturing leaders with a passion for manufacturing who have made a difference, like Ken Hutton and Dick Doyle. This year, the award fittingly went to Malcolm O’Hagan, the recently-retired President of the National Electrical Manufacturers Association. Malcolm has been at the forefront of manufacturing for most of his career and headed two associations with distinction. At his retirement from NEMA, he was given their prestigious Falk Award and gave a stirring speech tracing his journey as an immigrant — from his first glimpse of the Statue of Liberty, through his great career in manufacturing, to present day. All who heard it were moved. (We hope to be able to post it here at some point).

This past week, upon receiving the Council Leadership Award, Malcolm rose to speak once again, and once again, he stirred the crowd — this time with his “Ode to the Makers of Things.” For anyone who cares about manufacturing, when you read this, you’ll feel the same sense of pride that we all do, we who are part of something special, making things here in America, being part of this great manufacturing community that is so central to the US economy.

Click here to read Malcolm’s remarks. The “Ode” begins at the bottom of page 1, but the preamble is pretty good, too, and will give you some sense of the fellowship that is the association community. There was great admiration and affection for Malcolm in the room that night, well-deserved and earned from a lifetime of excellence in this business.

We hope you’ll take a moment to read it and be rightly proud. And, congratulations to Malcolm O’Hagan, leader, citizen, patriot and friend.

Join the discussion 2 Comments

  • Pat Cleary says:

    It was Malcolm O’Hagan, long-time President (recently retired) of NEMA. He is an immigrant from Ireland, just a great guy, beloved by the manufacturing assn community for his intellect and leadership — and also for being a wonderful and warm friend to all.

  • Bruce Clarke says:

    What a well written Ode. I wish I knew the writer.