2018 Manufacturer & Employee of the Year Awards

The Kentucky Association of Manufacturers (KAM) announced the winners of its 18th annual Manufacturer & Employee of the Year Awards at their Awards Luncheon this afternoon at The Olmsted in Louisville.

Huff Technologies, from Morganfield, KY, won the Small Business Category award; Wacker Chemical Corporation, from Calvert City, KY, won the Mid-Size Business Category award; Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky, in Georgetown, KY won the Large Business Category award. Each manufacturer was selected based on the following criteria:

  • Innovative and entrepreneurial leadership with regard to products, production method,
    or services;
  • Recognized leadership in making a key contribution to the quality of life in the Commonwealth and the community; and
  • Active involvement in organizations that advance industry and manufacturing.

Kevin Diamond, Plant Engineer with Wacker Chemical Corporation, Calvert City, KY, was selected as the 2018 Employee of the Year award winner. Nominees were judged on four criteria:

  • Innovation;
  • Teamwork;
  • Community Service; and
  • Leadership.

The independent 2018 Awards Selection Committee consisted of:

  • Richard Cleary (Committee Chair), Member – Frost Brown Todd LLC, Louisville
  • Dr. Larry Ferguson, President, Ashland Community and Technical College, Ashland
  • Steve Kerrick, Partner – Mountjoy Chilton Medley, LLP, Louisville
  • Ray Leathers, Commissioner, KY Department of Workforce Investment, Frankfort
  • Gary Stewart, Retired CPA, Louisville
  • Tim Whitaker, Environmental Compliance Manager – Ashland, Inc., Calvert City

Ray Leathers, Commissioner, KY Department of Workforce Investment provided the keynote remarks and saluted the winners while challenging all in the audience to engage in Kentucky’s workforce imperative. Leathers concluded his remarks stating, “Kentucky has the resources to build a globally competitive workforce – although, we must adopt a ‘work-first’ mentality and culture that drives workforce participation through engaged employers.”

Lee Lingo, KAM Executive Director echoed Leathers’ remarks regarding workforce development and told the group “telling the manufacturing story and engaging in your community is the cheapest and most effective way you can support your community and Kentucky’s prosperity.”  Lingo and KAM Board Chair Jacqueline (Jackie) Hogan, General Manager, Toyotetsu, North America, Somerset emphasized the continued work of redefining the image of manufacturing, building brand awareness and working together for our future and the future of our children and grandchildren.

“It is an exciting and challenging time to lead Kentucky’s voice of manufacturing, KAM, and I know working together, our future is bright.” stated Lee Lingo. “As always, we received many worthy nominations this year, making our selection committee’s job a difficult one, but we know the winners appreciate their time and effort. We thank the committee for their diligent work and congratulate all of our nominees, and our 2018 winners.”

Congratulations to all of our 2018 Award Winners!

Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky
Huff Technologies
Keynote Presentation (click to view)
Wacker Chemical
Kevin Diamond

Presenting Sponsor (Manufacturer of the Year Award)

Presenting Sponsor (Employee of the Year Award)

Platinum Sponsor

Gold Sponsors

Additional Sponsors



Friday, October 26, 2018
11:30 am – 1:30 pm


The Olmsted
3701 Frankfort Ave, Louisville, KY 40207


Opportunities are available.
Click here to view!