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June 3, 2021

Allied Wire and Cable has named Glenn Liacouras as its new chief commercial officer, overseeing sales and marketing. He has extensive sales, marketing and customer engagement experience. He started his career as a sales representative in the specialty chemical industry, and over 12 years rose to a business management position overseeing a manufacturing plant in Houston, Texas. He later worked at VWR International (now Avantor), a global distributor of laboratory supplies, starting as a sales manager. He worked his way up to vice president of portfolio management for the industrial market segment. He then became managing director for Germany’s Miele’s NAN Region, which includes the U.S., Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. He holds a B.S. degree in business from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and an MBA from St. Joseph’s University. Based in Collegeville, Pennsylvania, Allied Wire & Cable is a specialty manufacturer and distributor of electrical wire and cable.

Nick Avise was promoted to director of sales for Leggett & Platt, where he has worked for 16 years. He started out with the company as a sales representative in 2005, and was named marketing/sales development manager in 2014, then became national sales manager in 2017. He holds a B.S. degree in science and chemistry from Missouri Southern State University, and an MBA from Georgia College & State University. Based in Carthage, Missouri, Leggett & Platt is a diversified manufacturer whose products include annealed, bright high-carbon and bright low-carbon wire.

John Markowski is now manager for membership and social media for Wire Association International. It’s a familiar role for Markowski, as he has been a member of the WAI staff since he joined as an intern in April 2018. He served in that function while attending Albertus Magnus College, where he earned a marketing degree. “We knew instantly that John would be a great addition to the team, and we had hoped that he would stay with us upon his graduation,” said WAI Executive Director Steve Fetteroll. “His strong skills in social media have been on display for the past three years, and we recognize the critical importance of continuing to evolve and expand our voice. WAI’s already ‘well qualified’ yet lean staff just got stronger.” In addition to his social media responsibilities, Markowski, an Eagle Scout, will manage the comprehensive membership activities as well as a range of support for the Association’s chapters. Over the past six months, he has been gradually performing more of the responsibilities of the position in anticipation of the planned appointment.

5/19/2021: The Chicago Association of Spring Manufacturers, Inc. (CASMI) is re-scheduling SpringWorld 2022 so that it will not conflict with Yom Kippur, announced Tony Pesaresi, CASMI President. The event, which was scheduled to take place Oct. 5-7, 2022, will now take place Oct. 12-14, 2022 at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, Illinois.

According to Pesaresi, “SpringWorld taking place during Yom Kippur could have a negative impact on the event in terms of exhibiting company participation and attendance. CASMI strives to provide the best possible business atmosphere for buyers and suppliers at SpringWorld. Therefore, we decided to move the show to the second week in October.”

SpringWorld is renowned for bringing spring-related businesspeople together. In 2018, nearly 2,200 attendees and exhibitors from around the world participated. The event is conveniently located at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, Illinois - just five minutes from O’Hare International Airport. Attendance is free and is limited to spring, stamping, fastener, wire form manufacturers, and OEMs.

Companies planning to exhibit will find information on the CASMI web site, www.casmi-springworld.org, or they can contact the organization’s office at 630.359.4273, or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

CASMI was founded in 1944 as a not-for-profit trade association dedicated to the development of good business practices and sharing of technical information through ongoing communications among the job-shop spring manufacturers in the Greater Chicago area. Membership now includes spring companies and industry suppliers from the mid-west and throughout the U.S.

May 17, 2021.–A May 6 webinar by WAI’s New England Chapter featured labor attorney Katherine Witherspoon Fry, who discussed a number of legal issues stemming from Covid-19.

Fry discussed topics from the importance of a company enforcing its Covid-19 rules and allowing sales visits in a plant to use of tax credits for employee sick days and what to do about an employee who that tests positive more than once. She also responded to attendee questions, one of which would likely be of interest to any manufacturer or OEM: can a company require an employee to be vaccinated? Fry explained that while all the available vaccines are classified as for emergency authorization only, “you can mandate those for people who don’t have disabilities or religious objections.”

“I thought the presentation was extremely useful not only for wire and cable business owners, but for WAI members in management positions,” said New England Chapter President John Accorsi, who served as moderator for the webinar. "Katherine discussed a number of real-world examples of situations you want to avoid.”

Editor’s note: After the May 13th announcement by the CDC that fully vaccinated people no longer need to wear a face mask or stay six feet away from others in most settings, whether outdoors or indoors, Fry said in an e-mail that the news is very encouraging. and may incentivize many employees to become vaccinated. “However, if the state in which your employees are working mandates masks, don’t allow vaccinated people to unmask yet in office, at company events, or when meeting with people in public for business purposes. Continue to follow state guidance for health reasons and to demonstrate that your business isn’t negligent.”

Fry will provide more thoughts on Covid-19 and employers in the June issue of WJI.

5/14/2021: The Prysmian Group will display its commitment to Diversity & Inclusion through its first Global eNclusion Week, a five-day digital event that will take place from 17 to 21 May, featuring a series of digital panels and workshops on the importance and advantages of building diverse and inclusive workspaces. The program will focus on four main themes: Gender Diversity; Diversity & Inclusion in all its forms; Inclusive Culture in the workplace; and Generational D&I.

The Global eNclusion Week opens Monday, May 17, with remarks from Fabrizio Rutschmann, Prysmian Group CHRO, followed by speeches by: Valerio Battista, Prysmian Group CEO; Mimi Kung, Prysmian Group Independent Board Member; Eric Rondolat, Signify CEO; Sabrina Ritossa Fernandez, Sycomore Asset Management; Maria Cristina Bifulco, Chief Sustainability Officer & IR Director Prysmian Group; and Massimo Battaini, Prysmian Group COO. The Global eNclusion Week will offer the opportunity to know more about how countries, companies and associations are promoting Diversity & Inclusion around the world.

To register for the event, use this address: https://twitter.com/PrysmianGroup/status/1390264163780505600/photo/1

With the participation of an international and multicultural community, this initiative will feature one week of events open to everyone, where speakers from different industries and with different background will share their knowledge and best practices related to Diversity & Inclusion.
“We strongly believe that leveraging on gender, age and cultural diversity means creating more value and we are constantly building a work environment where all our employees can feel understood, respected and included, just as they are. This event is more than an aspiration: it is a necessity, or better, a business case for a Group that has to work with customers, suppliers and shareholders with different backgrounds and cultures. In order to improve this approach, it is necessary to raise awareness and build a positive dialogue, which can contribute to advancing the Group’s corporate culture," said Fabrizio Rutschmann, Chief HR Officer Prysmian Group.

Prysmian Group's goal is to further enhance its human capital, which can be found in its some 28,000 employees worldwide. The increase in the percentage of women, both among white-collar workers and at the level of top managers, is among the sustainability parameters to which the payment of the company managers’ variable remuneration has been linked.

As evidence of the strategic importance of gender and cultural diversity, Prysmian has also set up a new global Diversity & Inclusion Steering Committee, tasked with overseeing the achievement of the objectives that the Group has set itself. The Diversity & Inclusion Steering Committee has the responsibility to define D&I objectives at each organizational level and support the definition of the actions to achieve and to promote a cultural change to facilitate Diversity & Inclusion within the work environment. The Committee is composed by Prysmian Turkey Human Resources Director Aysun Kalmik, acting as Leader, and Product Development Manager of the Lincoln (Rhode Island) plant Prasha Sarwate, as Deputy Leader.

In order to improve the gender balance in its workforce, the Group has committed to achieving the following Diversity & Inclusion objectives by 2022:

• Ensuring 40% of women hired (female white collars hired with a permanent contract) on total hirings (34% in 2020 compared to 30% in 2016);
• Increasing from 21.9% to 25% the percentage of women managers (from junior to top positions);
• Improving gender balance with regard to executive positions: from 6% in 2016 to 18% in 2022.

In addition, fundamental indicators (e.g., security) have been implemented in all the Groups’ 104 plants.

Prysmian Group believes in the value of individuals, backgrounds, leadership styles and attitudes because each person has the potential to generate value to the Company. Its global footprint enables the Group to promote an inclusive environment, encouraging the development of corporate culture and identity. Side by Side is Prysmian Group’s project that promotes Diversity & Inclusion across the organization.

May 12, 2021 – Due to the effects and uncertainty of the Covid-19 pandemic, Messe Düsseldorf India decided to reschedule the combined staging of the wire India, Tube India, METEC India and India Essen Cutting & Welding trade fairs. Originally scheduled for September 2021, the four events will now take place from November 23-25, 2022 at the Bombay Exhibition Center in Mumbai.

“Our objective remains to support the economic recovery by providing a leading platform for conducting businesses safely and effectively at our trade fairs," Messe Düsseldorf India Managing Director Thomas Schlitt said in a press release. He noted that the recent development in the pandemic situation does not allow a reliable planning for the trade fairs in India for the next few months. "These circumstances make it impossible to hold the Indian Metal Fairs in September 2021. The decision to reschedule the trade fairs to November 2022 was made after careful evaluation of the situation together with our partners and key stakeholders.”

With this decision, Messe Düsseldorf India is taking into account its obligations towards its partners in the metal and metallurgy industry in India and worldwide, the release said. The postponement to a later date will ensure that the events will continue to provide a leading platform to bring global industry stakeholders together again. “We trust that by 2022 the international travel restrictions will be lifted and we will again see a large international participation given the international nature of our events. We are grateful to all our partners for their continued support in these unprecedented times. We stay committed and will take every possible measure in supporting and creating resilient business at India’s leading industry events for the metal and metallurgy sector,“ Schlitt said.

For further information on visiting or exhibiting at wire India, Tube Indi or METEC India 2022, contact Messe Düsseldorf North America, tel. (312) 781-5180, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or visit www.wire-india.com, www.tube-india.com, www.metec-india.com, www.iewc.in and www.mdna.com. You can also follow on twitter at http://twitter.com/mdnachicago