MBA REMEMBERS FORMER CHAIRMEN FOR DEDICATION The Manufacturer & Business Association (MBA) is honored to recognize the life and legacy of three visionary business leaders who passed away during the past year, including former MBA Board members and chairmen Gerald B. Eighmy, Louis P. Musante and Frank Gerlach. “Jerry, Lou and Frank all played an integral role in the Association, supporting its vision and helping lead us to where we are today,” said MBA President and CEO John Krahe. “We were fortunate to have worked with them as colleagues, as well as mentors and friends. Their passing is a great loss for the business community and all who knew them, and our hearts go out to their family and friends.” Eighmy, 77, who passed away on May 15, 2018, was born on December 17, 1940 in Cleveland, eventually moving to Conneaut, Ohio, where he became a lifelong resident. After graduating from Conneaut High School, he worked on one of the boats for U.S. Steel to gather up the money needed to go to college. He attended Heidelberg College in Tiffin, Ohio, earning a degree in chemistry. Soon after graduating, he started working for his father, Harry, at the family machining company, the Eighmy Corporation, in Conneaut. Over the years, he helped the company grow. In 1984, Eighmy started American Turned Products in Erie, leading it to become a thriving manufacturing company, with two facilities in Erie County (Erie and Fairview) that today serve the automotive, appliance, military and hydraulics industries. Eighmy was actively involved with the National Screw Machine Products Association, now called the Precision Machined Products Association (PMPA), a national trade association, representing more than 500 companies in the United States and Canada. He served on many committees, the board of directors and served as the association president. Jerry received the merit award, the association’s highest honor, for his service to the association and industry. Eighmy also was a board member and past chairman of the Manufacturer & Business Association. He served on the board of Brown Memorial Hospital for 25 years and chaired the board when the hospital became part of the University Hospitals of Cleveland health system. He also served on the UHHS board in Cleveland. He also was instrumental in the creation of the SPARC project in Conneaut, the sports complex for the Conneaut School System. Eighmy is survived by his wife Mary, sons Scott and Harry of Erie, and several grandchildren. Musante, 75, who owned several businesses in Girard and Erie, Pennsylvania, passed away in Richmond, Virginia, on December 30, 2017. Born on October 29, 1942 in Warren, Pennsylvania, Musante served his country in the U.S. Army and received his bachelor of science degree from Gannon College. He began his career at Continental Rubber, and then worked as a mold designer at Andmore Tool and Die until he left that position to start his own company, Westminster Manufacturing Corp. Musante held leadership roles for many NWPA Boards, including the Americans for the Competitive Enterprise System, the Erie Arts Association, the Manufacturer & Business Association, in which he served as Board member and chairman, Pennsylvania Free Enterprise Week and the Society of Plastic Engineers, who awarded him the honor of Man of the Year. Musante also received the Northwestern Pennsylvania Small Business Person of the Year award in 1992.
OCTOBER 2018 • mbabizmag.com