On July 2, the Made in the USA Foundation announced 20 winners from 60 nominees to its USA Hall of Fame. The Foundation held a dinner in Santa Monica, CA where it gave out the awards. The Made in the USA Foundation is a non-profit organization established in 1989 through matching grants from the United Auto Works and Ford Motor Company.
Established two years ago, these Hall of Fame Awards are based on the input of judges who evaluate companies based on: Quality, Competitiveness, and Impact.
Quality comparisons included use of Consumer Reports, the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (awarded by the National Institute of Standards and Technology), and other evaluating entities. Competitiveness included the company’s comparisons with imports and its ability to export. Impact includes whether the company developed new breakthroughs in technology, a new product category, or has exceptional designs.
Of the 20 companies recognized for 2012, more than half provide products and/or services that can be used by facility managers. These are listed here, and more about each is further below:
- Solar World (Solar Panels)
- Herman Miller (Office Furniture)
- Master Lock (Padlocks)
- Armstrong (Hand Tools)
- Boyd Lighting (Lighting)
- Chevy Volt (Electric Auto)
- Zero Motorcycles (Electric Motorcycle)
- Viking (Gas Ranges/Cooktops)
- McIntosh Amplifiers (Stereo Equipment)
- Worksman Bicycles (Bicycles)
- Dodge Dart (Economy Cars)
- Google (Software)
Solar World: SolarWorld Industries America Inc. is the largest U.S. maker of silicon solar cells and panels. The company has led the U.S. manufacturers’ complaints against Chinese subsides and employs 1,000 workers in Hillsboro, OR. SolarWorld has been manufacturing solar panels in California since 1975.
Herman Miller: Founded in Zeeland, MI in 1905, Herman Miller is a manufacturer of office furniture and equipment, as well as furniture for the home. It is notable as one of the first companies to produce modern 20th century furniture. Among classic Herman Miller products are the Aeron chair, Noguchi table, and the classic Eames Lounge Chair and ottoman. Herman Miller furniture is also credited with the invention of the office cubicle.
Boyd Lighting: William Boyd opened Boyd Lighting in San Francisco in 1920. For over 90 years, Boyd has been bringing the architectural and interior design community lighting fixtures that complement exclusive interiors. Boyd Lighting won the Edison Award in 1996.
Master Lock: Founded in 1921, Master Lock is the largest manufacturer of padlocks in the world selling 50 million locks a year. In 2012, Master Lock President John Heppner participated in the “Insourcing American Jobs Forum” at the White House. President Obama visited Master Lock this year and praised the company for moving production back to the United States.
Viking: Based in Greenwood, MS, Viking originated the professional segment of kitchen appliances with its introduction of the first restaurant-grade gas range for home use in 1987. Viking currently manufactures ranges and cooktops in many sizes and colors.
Armstrong Tools: The Armstrong Brothers Tool Company was founded in 1890 by four brothers, the sons of a Scottish immigrant blacksmith. The company’s product line includes nearly 5,000 items of mechanic’s tools, pipe and tubing tools, machine shop accessories, and cutting tools. In 1994, after 104 years of private ownership by the Armstrong family, the company was acquired by the Danaher Corporation.
McIntosh Amplifiers: The company was founded in 1949 by Frank McIntosh. The first McIntosh amplifier included the patented Unity Coupled Circuit, still used in current products. McIntosh amplifiers were used at the Woodstock Music Festival in 1969.
Chevy Volt: As rated by the U.S. EPA, the Chevy Volt is the most fuel efficient compact car with a gasoline engine sold in the United States. The Volt operates as a pure battery electric vehicle until its battery capacity drops, then its gasoline engine powers an electric generator to extend the vehicle’s range. The Volt won the 2011 Green Car of the Year award, the 2011 North American Car of the Year, and 2012 Car of the Year Award in Europe.
Zero Motorcycles: This American manufacturer of electric motorcycles, was founded in 2006 near Santa Cruz, CA by Neal Saiki, a former NASA engineer. Each Zero motorcycle is optimized from the ground up to leverage the revolutionary electric powertrain and uses a specially designed rigid, aircraft-grade aluminum frame to minimize weight. Zero launched a line of 2012 bikes specifically designed for police patrols and security agencies.
Worksman Bicycles: In 1898 when Morris Worksman established Worksman Cycles, his belief was that a well-designed three-wheeled cycle could replace the horse and wagon by providing a less expensive and more reliable way to move people and products. America’s oldest bicycle manufacturer, Worksman manufactures industrial and recreational bicycles in Brooklyn, NY.
Google: Founded by Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Google was first incorporated in 1998, and its initial public offering followed in 2004. The company’s mission statement from the outset was “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.” The company’s unofficial slogan is “Don’t be evil.” Google just released its first “Made in the USA” hardware: the Nexus Q, a video and audio streaming device.