Joe P Tours at Downtown Hays with Dustin Roths, Craig Lofton, Sara BloomThe Kansas Manufacturing Council has added a new face and some stimulating events in its mission to create a stronger and more prosperous manufacturing sector. 

Joe Pennington, president of Stevenson Company in Topeka, recently joined the Board of Advisors. “The Kansas Manufacturing Council is providing support, knowledge, and resources for the manufacturing industry. The voices of innovation and jobs creation should be heard and disseminated. I’m excited to listen, learn, and advocate where I can,” said Pennington.

Pennington is looking forward to visiting Kansas manufacturers during a “Making Kansas” bus tour. “Even after thirty years in the industry, I still feel like a kid at a Wonka factory when I visit these facilities,” he said. “People would be amazed and surprised at the commitment to technology, innovation, and environment going on here.” The bus tour will kick off in September, stopping in shops statewide to spotlight the impact enterprises are making to communities and the economy.

The Coolest Thing Made in Kansas tournament will begin in August. The KMC launched the competition to raise awareness about the many sensational products made in our state. This year will be an even bigger opportunity to engage employees and create brand fanatics. Any product that is made in Kansas qualifies for the competition, so watch for announcements and get ready to nominate your favorite.

Industry experts and peers will assemble in Mulvane for the Manufacturing Summit. Pennington said the seminar reflects current trends and latest news, so attendees can expect to hear from energized presenters and connect with fellow manufacturers. Those interested can register for the October event at the Kansas Chamber website.

Kansas Manufacturing Council is the leading advocacy organization for Kansas manufacturers and companies serving manufacturers of all sizes. There are 2,538 manufacturers in Kansas, employing 165,000 people with an average annual compensation of $71,744.

Manufacturing produces more than $27 billion in output annually, 16.3% of the total output in the state. Manufacturing helps drive the state’s economy with more than $9.49 billion in annual manufactured good exports. For more information about the Kansas Manufacturing Council, visit