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The West Virginia Manufacturers Association honored three legislators as Champions of Industry during its annual All-State Legislative Meeting Sept. 18. From left, Delegate Roger Hanshaw, R-Clay, Senator Patricia Rucker, R-Jefferson, WVMA President Rebecca McPhail and Delegate Mark Zatezalo, R-Hancock.CHARLESTON, W.Va. – The West Virginia Manufacturers Association (WVMA) hosted its third annual all-state legislative meeting Monday and highlighted the work of three legislators as Champions of Industry.

Senator Patricia Rucker, R-Jefferson, and Delegates Roger Hanshaw, R-Clay, and Mark Zatezalo, R-Hancock, were named WVMA Champions of Industry for promoting policies that are conducive to manufacturing.

“The WVMA is pleased to recognize the commitment of our Champions of Industry to the development of policy that fosters an environment of manufacturing growth,” said WVMA President Rebecca McPhail. “Each legislator stood out in their desire to learn about and understand key industry issues, and champion these causes.”

The award, first given to former Delegate Woody Ireland in 2015, honors legislators who go above and beyond in demonstrating support for policy that allows WV to be more competitive for manufacturing investment, McPhail said.

More than 100 legislators, manufacturing company representatives and industry supporters attended the annual meeting, which was held at the University of Charleston. Attendees heard directly from WVMA members what major issues were ahead for the 2018 legislative session. They also heard from Senate President Mitch Carmichael, R-Jackson, who promoted the upcoming Oct. 7 Roads to Prosperity amendment referendum, and House Speaker Tim Armstead, R-Kanawha, who said building West Virginia’s manufacturing sector remains a priority for the legislative leadership.

“This annual event has become an important opportunity for manufacturers to interact directly with policymakers about the issues that affect their ability to operate and grow their businesses in West Virginia,” McPhail said. “The WVMA policy priorities are aimed at making West Virginia more competitive for manufacturing investment and job growth, so starting these conversations now will allow all of us to be better prepared for the next legislative session.”

The WVMA also announced its new policy arm, Assemble WV, which released the first-ever manufacturing legislative honor roll from the 2017 legislative session. More information is available at www.assemblewv.com.