Congressman Joe Kennedy

Representing the 4th District of Massachusetts


Congressman Joe Kennedy working for Massachusetts constituents


Apr 1, 2016
Press Release
Congressman led federal push for Massachusetts bid

Newton, MA –Congressman Joe Kennedy III today applauded news that Massachusetts has been selected by the Department of Defense to host a $317 million Manufacturing Innovation Institute.  Led by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the institute will be a public-private consortium spanning 28 states and dedicated to emerging technologies in fibers and textiles.
Last year, Kennedy spearheaded Congressional efforts to support the Massachusetts-led bid.  He is also the author of the Revitalize American Manufacturing and Innovation Act, a piece of legislation that formally created the United States’ National Network for Manufacturing Innovation (NNMI). The Massachusetts project will be the country’s eighth Manufacturing Innovation Institute and the first one headquartered in New England. 
“Revolutionary fabrics and fibers are modernizing everything from battlefield communication to medical care,” said Congressman Kennedy. “That the Commonwealth would be chosen to lead the way here is no surprise.  From Lowell to Fall River, our ability to merge cutting-edge technology with age-old ingenuity has sparked a new day for the textile industry.  With its unparalleled commitment to innovation, MIT is the perfect epicenter for scaling these efforts. I applaud President Reif, Professor Fink, and all of the partners involved for this tremendous success.”
The new institute will be named Advanced Functional Fibers of America (AFFOA) and includes 31 universities, 16 industry members, 72 manufacturing entities, and 26 startup incubators, spread across 28 states.
Background on RAMI:
Congressman Kennedy introduced RAMI with Congressman Tom Reed (R-NY) in 2013. Securing over 100 co-sponsors, evenly split between both sides of the aisle, the bill passed the House of Representatives in September of 2014 with overwhelming support.  A companion bill was introduced in the U.S. Senate by Senators Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Roy Blunt (R-MO). The bill was signed into law by President Obama in December of 2014.
RAMI builds off an existing Obama Administration pilot program to create a network of regional institutes across the country, each focused on a unique technology, material, or process relevant to advanced manufacturing. Comprised of local industry, academia and other stakeholders, the institutes will work to (1) expand research and development, (2) close the gap between R&D and commercialization of products, (3) support small and mid-sized manufacturers, and (4) train a top-tier advanced manufacturing workforce. 
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For Immediate Release:
April 1, 2016
Emily Kaufman (617) 332-3333
Dan Black (202) 225-5931

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