Southeast Leaders Venture West to Promote Aerospace and Agribusiness


A March visit to Southern California by a delegation from the Southeast Region has yielded opportunities for the region in aerospace manufacturing. “We had four productive days of meetings with companies and consultants,” says Joe Melvin, director of business development for N.C. Southeast, which jointly organized the outreach mission with the Fayetteville Regional Alliance. Mr. Melvin was joined by Russ Rogerson, executive vice-president of the Fayetteville Regional Alliance, Mark Council, regional customized training director at the North Carolina Community College System, and Conley Hilliard, an economic developer with ElectriCities of North Carolina.

Thus far, the mission has resulted in a visit to Southeastern North Carolina by one of the aerospace companies visited, Mr. Melvin says. He and his colleagues also called on California-based agribusiness companies that are good fits with the Southeast Region.  While there, the group attended the annual conference of the AeroDef Manufacturing Conference and Exposition at the Long Beach Convention Center. The event, organized annually by the Michigan-based Society of Manufacturing Engineers, is a global gathering of leading aerospace and defense-related manufacturers.