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FLEXO Magazine : Golden Anniversary Commemorative Journal
VIEW FROM THE CHAIR "Flexo will never again be thought of as second or third best. I credit FTA and the membership for this achievement. Then and now, FTA is the place to go for technical knowledge. I have always been impressed with the willingness of Flexo people to share their knowledge for the good of all." -Georqe Sickinqer, past chair, FFTA Board of Trustees tions. Our entire membership base would benefit from efforts of this type, and the time is upon us for action. We should also continue to nurture and expand upon our ex- isting relationships with associations like PIA/GATF and TLMI. It will help toward expanding our reach in the promotion and development of opportunities for our membership. There is also a definite need to continue to build upon the momentum gained through SPI in achieving renewed membership involve- ment, particularly from the printer/converter and consumer product company segments, in the ongoing development of the association's strategies and programs. NIEMAN: Our industry faces a number of continued chal- lenges (such as from alternative print methods, increased cost pressure, speed to market, consistency of quality) and some new ones (like sustainability initiatives). In addition, all companies must continue to look at what associations are viewed as having value and warrant the investment (both financially and intellec- tually). It is critical in my mind that if the FTA is going to con- tinue to warrant investment in time and money by membership that it strives to develop more cost-effective training initiatives to provide education to all members, large and small, and to all areas, from prepress to the pressroom. FTA must also continue a leadership position in creating standards with initiatives such as FIRST and G7. Finally, FTA must take a leadership position to seek out new value added services to assist members in their overall efforts to keep flexo vibrant, growing, and to meet the ever changing challenges we all face. SCHLIESMANN: FTA needs to continue to refine the value it brings to its customers, the flexo printing industry. In today's changing world of budget cutbacks and industry consolidations, training becomes even more important and relevant. The opportu- nity is there for FTA to certainly help fill this role. My hope is that the TEST initiative will help FTA continue to be a valuable asset to the flexo industry. ANTHONY: FTA has numerous ways for its members to re- spond as to how they are doing and more important what they should be doing next. The true success of the organization is in the hands of the members by their response and support of FTA. MULLEN: Like any other major trade group I know, FTA/FFTA is continually working to re-invent itself and to remain the viable organization that it has been for five decades now. Management has worked very hard and I just want, more than anything, to see the members of the flexographic printing community con- tinue to show their support. Attend the workshops and Forums! Purchase the materials! Become active in an internal FTA group! Extend your congratulations to a hell of an organization for a wonderful 50 years! HOCKING: The flexo industry has matured. It's easy for a technical association to thrive when an industry is new and growing. Maturity does mean the needs of the members are/ will be different and FTA's goal is to meet these needs. This is a broad answer to a complicated question and I trust the current Board of Directors and FTA staff are up to the challenge. LIEB: FTA must provide leadership and guidance as we face the challenges presented by rapid technological developments and globalization. SICKINGER: As far as the future is concerned, FTA must continue to be the technical go-to place. Today, the hot topic is sustainability. Sustainability is both the right and the patriotic thing to do, and I don't see this as a topic that will fade away. FTA should playa leadership role in the movement and pose the right questions, such as: How can printing plates, inks and coating be made of more renewable sources? Does the use of solvent ink have a place in the sustainability movement? Are packaging designers in the loop? How can the FTA help mem- bers go from "Lean to Green?" VREELAND: FTA/FFTA needs to continue to press the membership to move forward and compete with other print- ing processes, while remaining price competitive. Education is a must, and we need to continue the educational process with our members as well as educational institutions. If we can bring flexo trained personnel to our workforce, we will be much farther ahead than if we have to train people on the "fly." COLLINS: The key focus I would like to see, and one of the primary objectives of the Strategic Planning Initiative and its Leadership Councils is to build better bridges between FTA and its members. The key to FTA's success is member involvement and developing an organizational environment which focuses on continuous change to meet current members' and member com- panies' needs for information, technology, and business practices. The SPI/LC process is the best way to accomplish that goal. It provides a forum for members to help identify the best path forward for the FTA and defines where the FTA's resources are best utilized to provide the biggest benefit to its members. . FTA 50th Anniversary Journal 99
Flexo Sustainable Spring 2008