Special Note: Mike Rowe will perform on the Bell Stage on Saturday at 3:00 PM. In addition, you might also catch Mike Rowe on the stage in the mikeroweWORKS Foundation Pavillion throughout the weekend.
Skilled trade jobs rock! In a powerful panel presentation conducted by Mike Rowe, star of TV's Dirty Jobs series and founder and CEO of the mikeroweWorks Foundation, you'll discover how skilled trades are making a difference in myriad sectors of the real world -- from agriculture science and farming to the Maker/DIY movement and even in marine exploration by developing life-saving suits of armor that protect divers against sharks!
Don't miss this unforgettable presentation whose panel members will include these skilled trade notables:
--Mark Hatch, Chief Executive Officer of TechShop, a global leader in the Maker/DIY movement. Under Mark's leadership, TechShop's revenue has grown twentyfold in five years and multiple new locations have opened across the US. In 2013, his book, The Maker Movement Manifesto, was released by McGraw-Hill Education, and San Francisco Business Times recognized Mark as one of “Bay Area’s Most Admired CEOs.” Mark has spoken at industry and leading events like Techonomy, TEDx, and The Clinton Global Initiative.
--Sue McCloskey, along with her husband, Mike, are owners of Fair Oaks Dairy Farms in Indiana, one of the largest dairy farms in the United States that uses both commercial and organic farming practices. They milk over 15,000 cows on a farm that creates its own energy through manure digesters. Through innovative use of skilled trade technology, Sue and her husband are also breaking down walls between farmers and consumers to increase education and dialogue about the food production industry, including powering their agritourism buses by a mix of cow and pig manure, and building high-tech facilities at their locations that afford visitors an interactive view of farming practices in action.
--Brian Huff, CEO, Midwest Technical Institute (MTI). A former pipe welder, Brian co-founded MTI trade school in 1995 (the school was then known as the Midwest School of Welding). Today the school, headquartered in Springfield, ILL -- and having 7 campuses in 4 states -- is known as a leader in training skill trade professionals in such sectors as mechanical trades, allied health, and transportation.
--Jeremiah Sullivan, a noted inventor and marine biologist, is founder of SharkArmor Tech and creator and technical innovator of the Neptunic Brand and products. In the late 1970's, he developed a flexible suit of armor for divers to wear while working around sharks. Today, under his new brand called SharkArmor Tech, he continues using the latest in skilled labor talent to manufacture new ways to advance his shark suits. These inventions have become the world standard among those who must work under hazardous circumstances with sharks in the open sea.
--Matt Freund is a second-generation dairy farmer in Connecticut. He has always looked for opportunities to add innovation to his farm, including through skilled trade technology. These innovations have included: building a methane digester to create biofuel on their farm, installing 500-plus solar panels to generate enough solar energy needed to run the dairy farm, and inventing and marketing a product called CowPots, using a a by-product of dairy farming- cow manure. Through these initiatives, Matt has received regional and national awards in conservation.