In his 30 years at Pratt & Whitney, Joe Sylvestro has established himself as a manufacturing leader, working his way from senior engineer to his current role as vice president of Manufacturing Operations.
Last week, Sylvestro's proven talents were welcomed onto the national stage.
U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker has announced Sylvestro's appointment to the Department of Commerce Manufacturing Council. This is the 30-person team of private sector leaders which serves as the principal private sector advisory body to the secretary of commerce on policies to strengthen U.S. manufacturing.
Sylvestro is ideally suited to such a high-level national council, as his 30 years at Pratt & Whitney have offered him a first-hand look at the impact the global economy has had on U.S. manufacturing, and the opportunities that now exist to re-establish the United States as the worldwide leader in 21st century manufacturing.
"This upcoming aerospace ramp-up at Pratt & Whitney offers tremendous opportunities in the global manufacturing network, and shows us all that the United States has a significant chance now to accelerate the progress in the manufacturing sector," Sylvestro said. "The U.S. is the leader in the aerospace sector, and we need to continue investing to hold onto that leadership because aerospace is an important element in the world's economy.
"That is the basis for my priorities with the Manufacturing Council – enhancing the cost competiveness of those manufacturing in the U.S. today, investing in manufacturing technology innovation to attract more companies to the U.S., and developing skills for the manufacturing worker of the future," he added.
These are heady days for the U.S. manufacturing sector, and this is an atmosphere in which Sylvestro thrives. Pratt & Whitney's investments in the ramp-up include more than $1 billion in infrastructure, technology and tooling. What's more, for the first time in more than a decade, both manufacturing output and employment are growing in the United States – nearly 800,000 new jobs have been created in the manufacturing sector in the past five years, the first sustained job growth in the industry in 20 years.
"The priority being placed on the re-establishment of U.S. manufacturing superiority is welcome news and I am happy to have a chance to support that effort," Sylvestro added. "It is indeed an honor to join so many other manufacturing leaders from around the country, all of whom share this common goal."