About the Manufacturing Extension Partnership
Roger Kilmer is the Director of the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), a program of the Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). MEP is a nationwide network of resources transforming manufacturers to compete globally, supporting greater supply chain integration and providing access to technology. MEP is a $300 million public-private partnership program leveraging federal support by teaming with industry as well as state and local organizations. With nearly 350 manufacturing extension offices located in all 50 states and Puerto Rico, MEP provides companies with services and access to resources that enhance growth, improve productivity, and expand capacity. MEP works with companies that are willing to invest in their future, to make improvements in the short term, and to position themselves to be stronger long-term competitors, both domestically and internationally.
Mr. Kilmer has been with the MEP program since 1993 and with NIST since 1974. Previously, Mr. Kilmer was the MEP Deputy Director, serving as the chief operating officer and chief financial officer responsible for internal operations, programmatic coordination, and policy review of all activities. From 1990 to 1993, Mr. Kilmer was the Deputy Division Chief of Robot Systems in the NIST Manufacturing Engineering Laboratory. In this position, he was responsible for establishing and managing research programs involving real-time sensor-based control of intelligent machines. Mr. Kilmer was also Group Leader of Robot Systems Integration, managing research and development programs with manufacturing and military applications including robotic deburring, automated lay up of thermoplastic composites, robotic safety systems, robotic handling of munitions, and unmanned land vehicle operations.
Mr. Kilmer received the Department of Commerce Silver Medal Award for leadership as the NIST MEP liaison to the interagency Technology Reinvestment Project (TRP) initiative and the Bronze Medal for superior leadership of NIST’s unmanned ground vehicle robotics program.
Mr. Kilmer holds a Master of Science and a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Pennsylvania State University.
Aimee has been with the MEP program since 1999 when she began as a Center Account Manager. As an Account Manager Aimee was responsible for managing center performance, developing and maintaining state and local partnerships, and promoting best business practices throughout the system. Prior to coming to MEP, Aimee acquired manufacturing technology experience through her work in ground weapon systems development for the Department of the Army Tank-Automotive Command in Warren, Michigan and through her work in gear research and manufacturing for the IIT Research Institute in Chicago, Illinois. Beginning in 1994, Aimee also worked in the MEP system as a field agent—first, in a position at The Chicago Manufacturing Center and second, at the Manufacturers Resource Center in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania where she assisted dozens of small and medium-sized manufacturers. Aimee received an EMBA in 2004 from George Washington University and a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Lawrence Technological University, Southfield, Michigan in 1987.
Alex Folk Program Development Office Director
Alex Folk leads the NIST MEP team responsible for developing new service delivery capabilities to assist small manufacturers better utilize innovation and technology for their competitive advantage. Additionally, Alex is responsible for two sustainability-focused, multi-government agency partnerships: E3 Economy, Energy, and the Environment and the Green Suppliers Network program. Alex joined the NIST MEP program in late 2000 as a Center Account Manager responsible for managing cooperative agreements between NIST MEP and the MEP center affiliates located throughout the United States. Roles in this position included managing performance, developing state and local partnerships and promoting best business practices throughout the system. Beginning in 2007, Alex served as the NIST MEP Center Operations Manager responsible for the oversight of the Federal partnerships and investments. Before coming to NIST MEP, Alex worked in the electric utility sector first a as a construction engineer with the Potomac Electric Power Company where he was responsible for outage project-management activities working at three of the companies power plants and then as Program Manager for the United States Enrichment Corporation (USEC), Inc., where he managed several corporate programs with the company as well as provided oversight of all plant project development, coordination and budgeting activities. Alex received his Masters Degree in Business Administration and his Bachelor of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Maryland.
Ron Gan Administrative and Financial Management Officer
Ron joined MEP in April 2007 to oversee all aspects of MEP finances. He also is responsible for the development of the Next Generation strategic panel review criteria as well as for the MEP Center Panel Review process. Ron graduated from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy in New London, Connecticut in 1979 with a Bachelor of Science in Economics and Management and earned his Master of Business Administration from the University of California in Berkeley in 1988. He retired from the Coast Guard in 1999 at the rank of Commander. During his active duty military career, Ron served afloat in numerous Coast Guard Cutters and ashore in assignments at Coast Guard Headquarters in Washington, D.C. and in district offices in Alameda and Long Beach, California. Since returning to the federal government as a civilian employee, in addition to NIST, Ron has worked for the Department of Homeland Security, the Transportation Security Administration, and the Department of Treasury.
William Kinser joined MEP in August 2011, as Center Operations Director with responsibility for leading MEP’s team of Federal Program Officers (FPOs) in providing financial and programmatic oversight for the nearly $90 million in Federal funds awarded annually to support the network of NIST MEP Centers. William brings to MEP nearly 15 years of Federal service including progressively responsible, cross-functional leadership experiences in grants administration. With NIST’s Grants & Agreements Management Division (GAMD), William served first as an Audit Resolution Specialist and most recently as an Associate Grants Officer. During his seven-year tenure with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), William provided direct oversight of grants and cooperative agreements sponsored by numerous EPA program offices and performed lead roles in developing and implementing national grants policies, procedures, and best practices as a Senior Grants Policy Specialist. In addition to his broad grants administration experience, William previously served as the Director of Business Operations, Office of Emergency Communications, U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and as a Financial Institution Examiner with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC). William is a Magna Cum Laude graduate of Concord University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration.
Mike Simpson System Operations Director
Mike Simpson joined the Manufacturing Extension Partnership in 1994 and has led several divisions, including Information Systems and Center Operations. In Mike’s current role as Director of System Operations, he manages several key MEP strategic partnerships with state and federal agencies, MEP Centers, and other stakeholders. He deploys MEP strategic initiatives and new services that result in the improved competitiveness of US manufacturers. In 2009, Mike received the George Uriano Award as a member of the team that developed a national program focused on accelerating the growth of US manufacturers in alliance with industry and NIST MEP’s extension centers. In 2010, Mike also received a Silver Medal for Superior Service, from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for his role on the team that created the E3 (Economy Energy, and Environment) Program which assists US Manufacturers reduce energy costs, boost productivity, and promote green business practices. Prior to joining the Department of Commerce, Mike was a consultant in the nuclear power industry, working with energy companies to reconstitute existing nuclear power plants as well as preparing documentation to relicense existing operation nuclear power plants. From 1984-1989, Mike served as an officer on board the USS John Adams, a nuclear submarine home based in Charleston, South Carolina. Mike received an MBA focused on the Management of Innovation, Science and Technology in 2004 from The George Washington University and a BS in Chemical Engineering from Pennsylvania State University in 1984.