By: Staff Reports | Gwinnett Citizen
Jason Moss and Governor Nathan Deal at the signing of the proclamation naming June to be Buy From Georgia month at the Georgia State Capitol.

Governor Deal proclaims June as Buy From Georgia Month

Georgia Manufacturing Expo gains the support of Governor Deal in its efforts to educate consumers on buying Georgia-made products.

Governor Nathan Deal is supporting the mission of Georgia Manufacturing Expo (GME) with the signing of the proclamation that declares June 2014 as "Buy From Georgia Month." With this proclamation, Georgia becomes the first state to encourage supporting local manufacturers.

The proclamation comes as the manufacturing industry prepares for this year's Georgia Manufacturing Expo, which will take place at the Gwinnett Center June 13-14. The mission of the host organization, GME, is to spotlight "the best of Georgia manufacturing people, plants, and products." With that goal in mind the Expo will add the Georgia Manufacturing Awards to this year's agenda. The awards program is the only program in Georgia that celebrates the people of the manufacturing industry.

"Nothing happens in Georgia's manufacturing industry without the tremendous collective effort of its workers," stated Scott Luton, a member of GME's advisory board. "As a key new initiative within the Georgia Manufacturing Expo, we thought it would be the right thing to do to try to recognize these incredible employees and leaders, as well as some of their impressive contributions and accomplishments."

GME will award four Front Line Leadership awards and one Plant Manager of the Year award. Nominations are currently being accepted through May 2, 2014. Double and self-nominations are welcomed. Criteria and information on how to submit a nomination can be found on GeorgiaManufacturingExpo.com. GME has assembled a panel of distinguished judges involved in the manufacturing industry to select the five winners. Luton adds that one of the goals of the new awards program is to "create more awareness for the wide array of career opportunities within the manufacturing industry in Georgia." In addition to the awards program, GME hosts year-round programming to educate consumers on locally made items. In late January they hosted a tour of ZF Wind Power plant, and have an upcoming tour of the Anhueser Busch brewery in February. GME promotes the Georgia Partner Pledge, getting Georgia residents to promise to buy locally made items first whenever possible. It is also responsible for BuyFromGeorgia.com, a free and growing directory of companies that make products throughout the state.

"We are so excited to have the support of Governor Deal on this," Jason Moss responded to the proclamation. "We have been working hard at educating people on the importance of manufacturing and we will continue to spotlight the great people, products, and plants of the manufacturing industry in Georgia."

Several US cities have similar proclamations in support of patronizing local businesses. In 2008, Local First Arizona received a proclamation from former Governor Napolitano for Independents Week. However, so far no state has focused their support on the manufacturing industry. Georgia is home to well over 5,000 companies that manufacture products in state, or provide Georgia-based services or support.

The Georgia Manufacturing Expo will be the main event in educating consumers on the Georgia manufacturing industry. GME wants consumers to understand the power and benefits of buying Georgia-made products. Buying local creates a proven boost in the economy, the job market, and in the community. The Expo is a two days event that is free to the public with registration. The Georgia Manufacturing Awards is scheduled during Friday's events.