Sharing Innovation: Debra Clements Joins National Association of Manufacturer's Board of Directors

Posted on Jun 15, 2017 9:15:00 AM, by Mollie Williams

More than 250,000 manufacturing firms, employing a workforce of 12.3 million workers, contributed $2.18 trillion to the U.S. economy in 2016. It is a staggering figure showcasing the manufacturing capabilities in our country.

Thanks to organizations like the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), the largest industrial trade association in the U.S., leaders from across the manufacturing industry have been on the forefront of every important policy debate for the industry.

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As a global manufacturing company, we are excited to share that Debra Clements, Milliken & Company Chief Administrative Officer, Senior General Counsel, and Corporate Secretary, was named to NAM’s Board of Directors. Debra plans to champion Milliken’s commitment to values-based business and responsible manufacturing as she serves the influential national organization. 

NAM works to advance a manufacturing policy agenda that promotes growth and prosperity for all Americans. Since 1895, leaders representing companies of all sizes in every industrial sector serve as the driving force behind NAM’s advocacy efforts. NAM works tirelessly on behalf of more than 14,000 members from some of the world’s most iconic brands, as well as small- and medium-sized manufacturers, who power the U.S. economy.

“Milliken has meaningful insight to share, which I hope can benefit every level of our manufacturing colleague,” shares Debra. “I look forward to using this position to extend Milliken’s initiatives that advance how the manufacturing industry can help improve the world, and respect our environmental responsibilities while doing so.”

Debra’s appointment also illustrates the industry push to grow women’s roles in manufacturing settings. Women comprised about 47 percent of the U.S. workforce, yet account for only 29 percent of the manufacturing workforce. With a skills gap shortfall in hiring, reaching women is an opportunity to bolster the manufacturing community even further.

In a study conducted by the Manufacturing Institute on women in manufacturing, gender diversity benefits include improved innovation abilities, higher return on equity, and increased profitability. Women are still underrepresented in the industry; however, thanks to efforts by NAM and others, 58 percent of those surveyed have noted positive change in their industry's attitude towards female professionals in the last five years. 

Since our founding more than 150 years ago, we work every day to add true value to people’s lives, improve health and safety, and help make the world more sustainable. Our associates drive our innovative spirit, and we are proud of what each associate contributes our industry and our community.

Topics: Doing Good

Mollie Williams

Written by Mollie Williams