M-WERC’s Director of Technology Innovation calls for creation of tech center

M-WERC’s chief technology officer Bruce Beihoff made a call for broader support of an M-WERC effort to create a technology center focused around power conversion sector for the navel shipbuilding industry. 

Speaking at an event held at the We Energies corporate office, which included the chief technology officers from three of Milwaukee’s largest employers (AO Smith, Eaton and Northwestern Mutual) Beihoff issued the call.

“This is not going to just be M-WERC and our members that drive this vision forward,” said Beihoff. “It’s going to take the type of partnerships and collaboration we’ve been building for the last decade in the energy, power and control industry.”

Navy Tech Centers around the country are made up of approximatly 74 companies employing more than 25,000 people, generating 570 patents. 

Experience has shown that one of the most successful ways to scale up manufacturing in a region is with the tech center model which is why M-WERC leaders and member companies like Eaton, LEM and DRS think the potential exists here to create a tech center as a tool to drive regional economic development. 

 “Our future success as a region is depended upon the Energy, Power and Control (EPC) industry to come together,” said Beihoff.  

“The economic reality of working from a center of excellence model is a proven concept. Making M-WERC a true tech center would revolutionize the sector and the state.”

Beihoff made the call to action not only to M-WERC’s nearly 100 members and supporters but to the energy, power and control industry as a whole, elected leaders including state and federal representatives from the Governor’s office and Wisconsin’s federal delegation, who were in attendance.

In the coming months M-WERC leaders plan to continue to develop the idea , conduct workshops and continue to get buy-in from the industry sector.  

“If this is going to work we’re going to need collaboration to work with industry, work with government leaders to secure some money and get projects rolling and funded.

M-WERC executive director Dan Ebert echoed Beihoff’s comments and made an equally bold prediction. “We’re thinking about Wisconsin the same way we think about other centers around the country. 
“If we get the kind of by-in possible, the tech center we’re talking about can truly transform the economic model for job creation in Wisconsin.”

As science and technology driven innovation anchors our activities at M-WERC remains focused on three most impactful areas- talent development, technology innovation and market insights. 

We’re excited about the future of the sector and specifically discussions around how we create this regional center of excellence.


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