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Upon Successful Live 3D Printing Event, AMUG Announces Awards and Board Changes

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The Additive Manufacturing Users Group (AMUG) launched its first live event since the COVID-19 pandemic shut down such activities to great enthusiasm from its tightly knit community. Now, the group has announced a series of awards and some changes to its Board of Directors.

Among the honors given was the prestigious Distinguished INnovator Operator (DINO) Award, which is provided to AMUG members who have demonstrated a long history of additive manufacturing (AM) expertise, contributions to the industry, and support to the users group. This year, the newly inducted DINOs included:

 “There were many candidates that had the tenure required for this coveted award. However, that is just one criterion. To be a DINO, one must also give back to the industry and support AMUG. These four individuals rose above all others because of their actions and achievements,” said Carl Dekker, AMUG president.

(left to right) Shane Collins, Robin Van Bragt, Giles Gaskell and Ana Neves. Image courtesy of AMUG.

Over the course of its 33-year history, AMUG has only selected 174 DINOs, demonstrating the character of those award-holders. The organization gives out no more than 10 DINO awards per year. It will begin accepting nominations for 2022 DINO candidates October 1, 2021.

AMUG also chose two individuals to receive its President’s Award, Terry Hoppe and Vince Anewenter. Hoppe was formerly Stratasys‘ director of North American applications team and was given the award posthumously after he succumbed to pancreatic cancer at the end of 2020. Therefore, Stratasys co-founder Scott Crump accepted the award on Hoppe’s behalf.

Scott Crump (right) accepts the President’s Award on behalf of Terry Hoppe; presented by Carl Dekker. Image courtesy of AMUG.

Terry Hoppe, formerly Stratasys’ director of North American applications team, received the award posthumously. Sadly, Hoppe succumbed to pancreatic cancer in December 2020. Scott Crump, co-founder of Stratasys, accepted the award on Terry’s behalf. Crump and AMUG representatives had numerous positive remarks to make about the 3D printing veteran, including the role he played in taking AMUG from a supplier-focused group to one that included AM more broadly.

Gary Rabinovitz, AMUG chairperson, was vice president and president during the transition years. He stated, “The future of AMUG was far from certain at that time, and sponsor support was minimal. Yet, we needed support from additive manufacturing companies representing a range of technologies to make the reinvented AMUG Conference work. And that is when Terry Hoppe’s contributions were pivotal.

“The AMUG Conference is unique in that it is a forum for information exchange, but potential sponsors were evaluating it for its lead generation potential,” Rabinovitz continued. “We invited Terry as a guest of our event so that he could experience what we were trying to do. From that exposure, he became a believer and advocate. Terry took that conviction back to Stratasys and championed the AMUG way. He was effective; Stratasys became a foundational sponsor and has remained a strong supporter over the past nine years.”

As for Anewenter, of the Milwaukee School of Engineering, he has been AMUG treasurer for nine years. According to AMUG, he aided in growing the event attendance by ten times, all while remaining healthy from a financial standpoint. Rabinovitz said, “Starting with very little, Vince has guided and managed AMUG operations through transitions, growth, and challenges. And he has done that collaboratively…as part of the team… where he listens to others and works hard to satisfy divergent goals.”

Vince Anewenter (right) receives the President’s Award from Carl Dekker. Image courtesy of AMUG.

The President’s Award if even more selective than the DINOs, with only 10 recipients having been chosen over the course of the past 33 years.

Additionally, AMUG chose winners for its annual Technical Competition: Bill Braune of Dinsmore, Inc. and Vito Gervasi of Cadens LLC. Braune’s entry for the Advanced Finishing category was detailed scene inspired by the Darksiders video game series. He used Carbon’s Digital Light Synthesis to 3D print the items in his scene before finishing them and applying 3D printing polymer powders to their surface to generate rough textures for the scene. Braune finally applied some 30 colors to his models with dry brushing, airbrushing and washes.

Bill Braune’s winning entry titled “Death: A Horseman’s Journey.” Image courtesy of AMUG.

Gervasi was awarded first place in the Advanced Concepts category for a one-tenth scale replica of a 3D printed turbine system. While parts of the full-size micro-hydro system was 3D printed on the Big Area Additive Manufacturing system at Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s Manufacturing Demonstration Facility, the replica was produced with fused deposition modeling. The “BAAM Dam”, as it was called, demonstrated Gervasi’s belief that 3D printing can reduce the carbon footprint of the United States.

Bonnie Meyer, chairperson of AMUG’s Technical Competition committee, Meyer said of Gervasi’s work, “What grabbed the attention of the judges was the creative use of additive manufacturing to address the need for more renewable energy. Scale was also a factor. The replica Vito displayed spanned an entire tabletop. When the judges imagined a unit 10 times larger, ‘BAAM Dam’ took on a whole new dimension.”

Vito Gervasi’s winning entry titled “BAAM Dam. Leveraging Large Format AM for Community Hydroelectric Applications.” Image courtesy of AMUG.

Finally, AMUG has also announced its new Board of Directors for 2021 to 2022, which will begin their roles on July 1, 2021. Eight of the 10 members were elected by AMUG members at the 2021 conference. This group then selected two individuals to act as the Treasurer and Director at Large positions. Met-L-Flo’s Carl Dekker, previously a two-term Vice President, was appointed for a second term as President. ASTM International’s Paul Bates maintained the Past President position, while Andrew Allshorn, of AT 3D-SQUARED, was re-elected Vice President for a second term.

Top row (from left) Carl Dekker, Paul Bates, Andrew Allshorn, Vince Anewenter and Leslie Frost. Bottom row (from left) Bill Macy, Jordan Weston, Tim Bell, Tom Sorovetz and Gary Rabinovitz. Image courtesy of AMUG.

GE Additive’s Leslie Frost was re-elected Secretary, her third term in this position. The aforementioned Vince Anewenter was elected to continue his role as Treasurer. Thomas Sorovetz of Stellantis (recently formed by the merger of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and PSA Group) maintains the newly renamed Director of Events and Hospitality position for the 28th year.

Four new director positions were also created, which will be filled by Bill Macy of Titan Robotics as Director of Membership, Jordan Weston of MSOE as Director of Education & Conference, Tim Bell of Siemens Digital Industries USA as Director of Business Development, and Gary Rabinovitz of Reebok International as Director at Large. All but Rabinovitz were elected to join the board for the first time. Rabinovitz previously served as Chairman for five terms, as well as President, Past President, Vice President and Board Advisor for five terms.

Macy will hold the position of Director of Membership. Weston, who has served as Chair of the Track Leader Committee for three years and has been a tracker leader for six years, will assume the Director of Education & Conference position. Bell will hold the position of Director of Business Development. Rabinovitz was appointed to the Director at Large position.

“We established a new management structure to better support AMUG’s growth. While much thought and deliberation went into the planning, I expect to find that the structure and individual roles will require some adaptation,” said Carl Dekker, AMUG President. “I am quite pleased with the incoming board’s mix of long-term service and first-time participation as we implement the new structure. We will have fresh ideas balanced by historical perspectives. I am looking forward to leading this team and instituting refinements as needed.“

The board will establish the program for the AMUG 2022 conference, which will be held in Chicago, Illinois from April 3 to April 7.

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