Mike Smeltzer
Mike Smeltzer (Bill Kalina)

The Manufacturers' Association is looking for a new executive director.

Mike Smeltzer, who formerly led the York-based trade organization, resigned Tuesday.

Smeltzer, a 58-year-old Springettsbury Township resident, said he and the 17-member board of directors couldn't agree on a strategic future for the association.

"Rather than fight it, I decided it was better to leave," he said.

As executive director, Smeltzer often talked about the skills gap in York County and beyond. He said he focused on education and training initiatives aimed at helping manufacturers find good workers, and local workers find good jobs.

"Workforce development never generates revenue, but it needs to be done," he said.

Smeltzer will continue to work as a partner in a local venture capital firm and serve on the board of directors for several area organizations and companies.

"Who knows what may materialize, but I know I won't have trouble filling up my day," he said.

'Solid organization': Smeltzer said he's leaving the Manufacturers' Association in a good position.

"It's a solid organization with a quality future," he said.

John Lebo, vice president of the association's board of directors, said local manufacturers are looking for their next leader.

"We certainly respect Mike's decision to resign and wish him well. We appreciate his support and carrying the flag for so long," he said.


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The association, which has about 400 members and represents more than 200 local manufacturers, will soon announce an interim director and begin a search for a new executive, said Lebo, who also serves as president of Doucette Industries in Manchester Township.

"We will be forming an executive search committee to hire the permanent position. One the thing the interim director will be charged with is figuring out a marketing plan and determining what the next director's responsibilities will be," he said.

The committee will create an assessment of the role and look for someone to fill those requirements, Lebo said.

"This is our time to stop, look, listen, take the pulse of the association and move forward," he said.

- Reach Candy Woodall at cwoodall@yorkdispatch.com.