YOUNGSTOWN - The Youngstown / Warren Regional Chamber on Thursday received the 2013 Excellence in Economic Development Innovation Award from the Ohio Economic Development Association, recognizing its work that led to a large donation of engineering software to Youngstown State University.
Siemens Corp. earlier this year donated $440 million in Siemens Product Lifestyle Management engineering software to YSU's College of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.
The award was announced Thursday at the OEDA's 2013 Excellence Awards Summit in Columbus. Sarah Boyarko, the Regional Chamber's Vice President for Economic Development, North America, and Mike Hripko, YSU's director, Research and Technology-based Economic Development, attended the awards presentation.
Eric Planey, the Chamber's former vice president for International Business Attraction, worked closely with Siemens CEO Eric Spiegel, a Youngstown native, to determine that Siemens' in-kind grant of PLM software to YSU could be a significant enhancement tool for the university and the Mahoning Valley region.
Boyarko said the OEDA award was a great honor for the Chamber, YSU and the Mahoning Valley. "It is also a tribute to Eric Spiegel and his leadership and vision in bringing the advanced software to YSU, which will pave the way for re-modernizing student engineering skillsets and make the university and the Valley an attraction for the study of advanced manufacturing technology," she said.
When it announced the in-kind grant in June, Siemens said the PLM software will be a core component in the continuing efforts of the new National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute in downtown Youngstown to prepare a modern workforce in the Cleveland-Pittsburgh TechBelt and throughout the United States. The software is used by more than 70,000 companies globally, including 800 in Ohio.
The Chamber also was recognized for the 2013 Excellence in Economic Development Marketing Large Project for its work on the Collabor18 marketing piece created by the Northeast Ohio Regional Economic Development Partners. Besides the Chamber, the partners include the Greater Cleveland Partnership, Team Lorain County, Greater Akron Chamber and Stark Development Board.
The Ohio Economic Development Association's annual excellence awards program recognizes the achievements of individuals and organizations in Ohio in the areas of economic and workforce development.