The Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliance has named Jenny Cothran as its Program Manager. The position will develop, implement and promote new programs that are beneficial to the Oklahoma manufacturing community.
“Along with a deep knowledge of the manufacturing industry, Jenny brings an enthusiasm and energy that will help move our organization forward,” says Joe Genet, vice president of the Manufacturing Alliance. “Jenny is uniquely qualified to develop the programs and services essential to growing Oklahoma’s economy while keeping our manufacturers on the leading edge of advanced technologies.”
Cothran earned her degree in mechanical engineering from Oklahoma State University. Most recently, she served as an applications engineer for Zeeco, a Broken Arrow-based manufacturer of high-tech combustion equipment and advanced environmental systems.
“Maintaining competitiveness amid global challenges is a big issue for many firms, especially small and medium-sized manufacturers,” Cothran says. “Companies need to invest in technology, deploy data analytics, and embrace emerging tools like 3-D printing and robotics. Those that do this will be able to compete while others get left behind.”
In developing new assistance programs, Cothran will work with a wide-range of local, state and national resources. The Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliance is distinctive in its ability to utilize the programs developed through the national Manufacturing Extension Partnership. “By embracing new business models now, manufacturers can improve productivity in their own plants, compete against rivals, and maintain an edge with customers who are seeking their own gains from innovation,” Cothran says.
The Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliance is a not-for-profit economic development organization. Each year, the alliance works with hundreds of companies on thousands of projects. The economic impact is extraordinary, totaling tens of millions of dollars in new sales and significant high-wage job creation.
The Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliance along with the Oklahoma Center for the Advancement of Science and Technology, i2E, and OSU’s New Product Development Center forms the Oklahoma Innovation Model. It is an integrated solution for innovation. OCAST funds qualified research, i2E then delivers concept validation and secures growth-stage capital. The Manufacturing Alliance helps ramp innovation from the concept or startup-stage to full-scale manufacturing implementation. Together, the partnership provides the best return on investment, especially in traditionally underserved rural areas of the state.