Hello and welcome back to!  I am Ken Baxter and it is Monday, December 2nd, 2013 here in Las Vegas.  I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving holiday; we had a wonderful holiday weekend spent with family and friends, which I am so grateful for, but everyone knows that after a long weekend away from the office, your first morning back at work is spent putting out fires and struggling to catch up on all the things you meant to accomplish on the days you were away!  (Not that I am complaining…I am glad to be busy and hard at work when so many others are not able to find jobs in this country.)  With that said, I hope today’s post will distract you from the daily grind, dear reader, and provide you with some food for thought on this lovely Monday morning!

Following my Thanksgiving post, where I talked about buying American and the importance of patriotic spending, I’d like to bring your attention to one of the Ken Baxter family’s proudest achievements – Made in America!

Made in America non-profit foundation was created in 2012 as an affiliate public charity of K&L Baxter Family Foundation.  Our mission is to address the overwhelming issues facing the current economic crisis in our country.  As a solution, and in an attempt to provide a viable alternative to issues facing America’s economic security, my lovely wife, Linda, and I work in collaborative partnership with the public and private sector to develop programs especially suited to recovering the magnitude of jobs and gross domestic product lost in the United States over the last two decades.  We are dedicated to supporting and strengthening the return and retention of American jobs in the manufacturing sector in an effort to reignite the economic recovery of this country.  We are tirelessly working to achieve our goals through several important programs and initiatives.

Program #1 – Teach the Teachers Manufacturing.  This important initiative was launched to expand the career and technical academy programs of study, including special outreach programs, designed to “educate the educators” in elementary and middle schools toward the redefined rewards of manufacturing and promote the skill base and teaching tools necessary to empower high school facilitators and staff with the overall knowledge, curriculum, and technical equipment necessary to teach and train the manufacturing workforce of tomorrow.

Program #2 – Students in Manufacturing.  The goal of this program is to expand career and technical academy programs of study and technical aptitude, including hands-on training with laboratory and technical manufacturing equipment. “Students in Manufacturing” is intended to reach high school students and prepare them for diverse manufacturing sector positions ranging from soft and hard skill sets for apprenticeship as well as career-oriented opportunity. Made in America will advocate, implement and promote National Career Readiness Certificate (NCRC) testing in order to pair talent and employer in particular skill sets. Today, the NCRC has issued over 1 Million certificates to qualifying candidates and more than forty states participate in regional or statewide certificate programs.

The five high schools in Las Vegas: Canyon Springs, Cimarron, Legacy, Mojave, and Palo Verde, each face unique challenges in fulfilling the academic and technical requirements under the district guidelines for college/career preparedness. Made in America is committed to partnering with these schools and acting as liaison to local manufacturers who have identified a shortfall in recruitment skill sets for new hires. Teachers will themselves be educating on how to provide students with a curriculum and guide for future manufacturing post-secondary education or post graduate careers opportunities. As such, Made in America will also provide funding for the necessary hands-on training, technology, and equipment required for students participating in the program.

The aggregate result of the Education and Training Programs will significantly contribute to a more accomplished and qualified workforce. These compelling programs will add motivation and incentive to high school and post-secondary teachers and students alike. Generations of high school and post-secondary education students will significantly contribute to the rebirth of our economy, when armed with the skill sets necessary to reignite manufacturing in America.

Program #3 – Veterans in Manufacturing.  Made in America will advocate, implement and promote National Career Readiness Certificate (NCRC), Manufacturing Skills Standards Council (MSSC), and National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS) testing in order to pair veteran talent in particular skill sets. Certification programs will be coordinated in conjunction with skills gap training, and Made in America will work in collaboration with the Veterans Affairs Administration to provide public awareness and education on the programs offered, and also will work to promote the union between the manufacturing sector and VA facilities.

Program #4 – Non-Partisan Tax Reform and Public Policy Advocacy.  We at Made in America believe the solution to our country’s economic woes, including the decline in the number of available jobs to our citizens and lack of American made products, lies in public awareness, strong organizational ties, and collaborative partnerships between state and federal government entities and the manufacturing industry.  Ultimately a solution based strategy, which would include reducing the tax burdens through tax abatement and deferral programs for qualifying companies, tax reform could also eliminate the current incentives in the current tax code structure to move manufacturing investments overseas, a critical component in the retention of US jobs. Did you know that our current corporate tax restrictions are more than 15% greater than those of our overseas manufacturing competitors?  That is a pretty hefty burden on American manufacturers. Reformation of the current tax structure would essentially even the playing field with our trading partners.

I hope that this has given you a little bit of insight into the goals that Made in America strives to accomplish.  As a side note, let me please stress again the importance of buying American made goods!!  Please buy American whenever possible – you will play an important role in contributing to American job creation, retention, and increasing the number of manufacturing companies in the USA!  If you are interested in learning more about bringing manufacturing back to the USA, creating American jobs, and taking part in our mission to re-invigorate our economy through domestic spending on American made goods, please check out our non-profit organization’s website: