Industry Concludes West Coast Bright Design Challenge

The Metal Finishers of Southern California have officially concluded the 2014 West Coast Bright Design Challenge. Since September, students from the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena have been working diligently to complete their creative projects.

Now in its fifth, consecutive year, the 2014 program challenged students to design marketable products that incorporate surface finishing. Students received hands-on experience related to finishing theory, technology, and physical processes through classroom instruction and tours at facilities focused on plating, anodizing and other finishing technologies.

Presentations to peers, teachers, industry representatives and judges took place prior to final judging on December 9. Grand prize recipient, Ofir Atia, and fellow challenge winners, Judy Chu and David Hansungkim received scholarships to further their creative surface technology research and design efforts.


Posted in Education, Events, NASF Chapters | Tagged

2015 NASF Events: Keynotes Not to be Missed

Emerging Slate of 2015 Keynotes Announced… More to Come

NASF is hosting an exceptional roster of keynotes for the association’s major events in 2015. Please join us, connect with industry colleagues and stay informed on industry issues.

Management Conference, February 15-10, 2015
At February’s NASF Management Conference, renowned business consultant, Daniel Feiman, will head two executive “workshops” with attendees on improving management, making better business decisions and sustaining future growth in organizations of all sizes. Mr. Feiman is the Founder of Build it Backwards, a global consulting and training services firm with broad expertise in strategic planning, financial modeling and process improvement. For three decades, he has helped companies of all types of organizations fulfill their potential, especially small and medium sized businesses.

Washington Forum, April 14-16, 2015
We’ll welcome top commentator Amy Walter to the annual Washington Forum. An experienced political analyst, Ms. Walter has gained unparalleled access to campaign insiders and decision-makers as one of the best political journalists covering Washington. She is the national editor of The Cook Political Report and the former political director of ABC News. Ms. Walter will discuss the electoral process, congressional culture and the Washington political scene to take attendees on an insiders’ tour of Washington.

NASF SUR/FIN, June 8-10, 2015
NASF’s largest event of the year, the SUR/FIN Manufacturing and Technology Tradeshow & Conference, will host John Deere’s Alan McGee. As Supply Base Manager for Fasteners, he’ll provide insight and perspective on surface finishing at Deere, and highlight progress as well as current and future challenges for global customers of surface technology.

Posted in Events

Legal Update: NASF, EPA Face Off in Court in Precedent-Setting Case on Air Toxics Rule

Federal Appeals Court also hears views from California, Congress and Environmental Groups

On December 3, 2014, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit heard oral argument on NASF’s legal challenge of EPA’s Chromium Electroplating NEHAP regulation to control chromium emissions. Lawyers representing NASF, the Sierra Club, the State of California and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) made their final arguments in this case before the three-judge panel of Judge Thomas Griffith, Judge Cornelia Pillard, and Judge Stephen Williams. In addition, the judges asked each attorney clarifying questions on a variety of topics.

NASF Highlights Low Risk, Flawed EPA Data & Bungled Mist Suppressants Analysis
As the industry petitioner in this case, NASF presented its argument first. The industry noted EPA had concluded that any “residual risk” to public health left over from the agency’s 1995 chromium electroplating standard was acceptable and, as a consequence, no additional controls are necessary to provide an ample margin of safety to protect human health and the environment.

Despite this finding, EPA had issued new emissions standards – including new surface tension levels – based on “new developments” in processes, practices and control technologies. NASF pointed out that EPA failed to identify any specific developments, but only inferred them from industry’s performance data, which showed many companies controlling emissions to levels below the 1995 standard. NASF argued that improved compliance with the 1995 standard should not be considered a development or improvement to trigger revised standards.

Two issues raised by NASF before the judges were: (1) the lack of any data on the effectiveness of non-PFOS fume suppressants to reduce chromium emissions; and (2) EPA’s flawed data and model for estimating chromium emissions in order to assess the level of “residual” or leftover risk from the earlier standards. In a detailed line of questioning, the judges asked EPA why it did not revise its estimates on chromium emissions based on the evidence that NASF submitted in the rulemaking, as well as how EPA could set tighter emission limits based on the use of fume suppressants without any data for the use of non-PFOS fume suppressants.

EPA Claims Mist Suppressant Alternatives Reduce Chromium Emissions Equal to PFOS Performance
EPA countered that it had revised its analysis by incorporating some of the data provided by NASF, but that this revision did not affect the agency’s analysis on residual risk to public health. Furthermore, EPA argued that because non-PFOS fume suppressants can reduce surface tension levels just as well as PFOS fume suppressants, then non-PFOS fume suppressants would reduce chromium emissions equally as effectively compared to PFOS fume suppressants.

Sierra Club, Earth Justice Ask Court to Overturn Established Precedent
The environmental petitioners, Sierra Club, argued that the Clean Air Act required EPA to conduct another MACT air rulemaking process based on the emissions achieved by the top performers in the industry, despite well-established legal precedent from the D.C. Circuit Court that had already rejected this argument. Sierra Club persisted and requested the court to reverse these decisions and reconsider this issue in this case. EPA objected to the position taken by Sierra Club, and the court appeared to be unmoved by Sierra Club’s argument.

This case raised critical issues on how to interpret the Clean Air Act that could impact a broad range of industries beyond chromium electroplating. Accordingly, a large coalition of industry trade associations – including the American Chemistry Council, the American Petroleum Institute and the Rubber Manufacturers Association – supported NASF as interveners in this case. Similarly, the State of California and Congressman Henry Waxman (D-CA) supported the Sierra Club as interveners.

Outlook for 2015
The three-judge panel will now assess all of the information in the rulemaking record, the briefs filed by legal counsel for the parties, and the issues raised at oral argument to determine if EPA’s rule should be upheld or vacated and sent back to EPA to reissue the rule pursuant to the court’s guidance. A final decision could be issued as early as February 2015. For more information regarding developments in this case, contact Jeff Hannapel at, or Christian Richter at

Posted in Government Relations, Law & Regulation

Daniel Feiman Slated as 2015 NASF Management Conference Keynote

The 2015 NASF Management Conference program will focus specifically on how to strengthen your company. We’ll offer, among other sessions, a keynote and workshop discussion led by Daniel Feiman, the founder of Build it Backwards, a global consulting and training services firm with broad expertise in strategic planning, financial modeling, and process improvement. For three decades, Daniel has helped companies of all sizes – especially small and medium sized businesses – fulfill their potential.

About Daniel Feiman

Daniel Feiman, MBA, CMC® consults in three areas: Strategy: Planning & Implementation; Finance: Modeling & Analysis; Process: Continuous Process Improvement & Certified Supplier Programs.

Mr. Feiman is an internationally recognized trainer in these areas, working with firms such as ADNOC (United Arab Emirates); American Management Association (AMA); American Private Equity; Apple; ARAMCO (Saudic Arabia); California Institute of International Business & Economics; Hilton Hotels; Institute for Supply Management (ISM); Mattel; PEMEX (Mexico); PDO (Oman); Promigas (Colombia); Reliance (India); TRW; UEM (Malaysia) and the University of Manchester (UK), among others.

Over the past 37 years, he has consulted and trained firms in many industries on budgeting and cost control as well as teaching the subject at the university level. He has worked with the automotive, aerospace, consumer products, distribution, education, legal, hospitality, healthcare, manufacturing, medical, oil and gas, production and telecom industries, among others.

Mr. Feiman has published whitepapers, articles, SlideShare presentations, YouTube videos and books on these subjects. His 3d book in the Build It Backwards series, THE Book on Business from A to Z: The 260 Answers You Need to Know, was published in November 2011 and nominated for a Thought Leader of the Year award by the AM&AA and selected as a finalist for a Global eBook of the Year award.

He has been an adjunct faculty at the University of California, Los Angeles Extension Department since 1990 and was formerly the visiting professor at the University of Huddersfield’s Business School in the UK.

Mr. Feiman has over 18 years’ experience in all facets of both the traditional and nontraditional banking industry. He has been interviewed on various television and radio show. He is also a reviewer for the New York Journal of Books.

He has been awarded the CMC® designation by the Institute of Management Consultants, which is awarded to less than 1% of management consultants.

Posted in Events | Tagged

Supplier Meeting Registration Now Open

NASF is hosting a special meeting for its Supplier Members at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Rosemont, Illinois, on Wednesday, January 14th, 2015, from 10:00 AM to approximately 3:30 PM.

This meeting will focus on two topics:

  1. The recently concluded Wage & Benefit Survey of NASF Supplier members with complete analysis and findings presented by Bill Saas;
  2. An update and discussion on the 2015 regulatory agenda with specific attention to major issues affecting NASF suppliers.

The Right Time and Location
The January 14th meeting date enables you to have the results of this survey in-hand for any salary and manpower reviews you may be conducting on behalf of your company. The Chicago (Rosemont) area offers a convenient, central location with affordable airfares. The Hyatt offers free shuttle service between the hotel and O’Hare International Airport. It also provides attendees with the opportunity to fly or drive to Chicago in the morning and return home the same day.

Registration for this meeting is $75 for those NASF members who submitted data for the report. For NASF members who did not submit data, registration for the presentation is $750. This includes a copy of the full survey report. Please contact Cheryl Clark, via email at, or 302-436-5616 to register for this event. This meeting is only open to NASF supplier members. Non-NASF members who wish to purchase a copy of the report will be able to do so at a cost of $5,000.

Many attending this Supplier Conference may choose to arrive in Chicago on January 13th, the evening before the meeting. A special room block has been reserved in NASF’s name at the Hyatt at a special rate of $129.00 per night. We are expecting a sizeable crowd and these rooms will only be held until December 23, so it’s important that you make your reservations as quickly as possible. To book your room call 888-406-2291 or click here. Please inform the hotel you are part of the NASF group when making your hotel arrangements.

Update: We have received a new reservation link from the Hyatt. Please click here to book your room.

Posted in Events