As an integral part of The Manufacturing Institute’s STEP Women’s Initiative, the STEP Ahead Awards have made a profound difference in reducing the gender gap in manufacturing. To date, we have honored more than 1,000 women who are having a positive impact on their companies and communities. In the first five years alone, STEP Ahead Award winners reached more than 300,000 individuals, from peers in the industry to school-age children.

The STEP Ahead Awards recognize women in science, technology, engineering and production careers who exemplify leadership within their companies. This national honor identifies top talent in the manufacturing industry and further encourages award winners to mentor and support the next generation of female talent to pursue modern manufacturing careers. The STEP Ahead Awards give women across the country a platform to showcase the incredible opportunities the industry has to offer, whether they are running the company, designing the next big product or testing innovations on the shop floor.

The review of the nominations for 2022 STEP Ahead Awards Honorees and Emerging Leaders is underway. The public announcement of the 2022 recipients will be on March 1, 2022.

STEP Ahead Honorees

The following women were honored with STEP Ahead Awards. Take a look at the amazing stories of these impressive women.


STEP Ahead Sponsorship Opportunities

The Manufacturing Institute offers gala sponsorship opportunities to companies and organizations that place a priority on female talent and the need for attracting, advancing, and retaining more women to the industry.


Women attending the event are still buzzing, and I’ve gotten lots of emails and LinkedIn requests from young women who were both encouraged and inspired.” – Marcia Kull, Vice President, Volvo Penta of the Americas

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