Finishers Descend on Washington

The Washington Forum, held by the National Association for Surface Finishing, and held at the Ritz Carlton, Pentagon City, was a resounding success.



The week of April 9, while President Obama was releasing his official budget, EPA nominee Gina McCarthy was put through rigorous Senate hearings and the cherry blossoms were in full bloom, the finishing industry flocked to our nation’s capital.


With pressing fiscal and regulatory issues such as health care and chromium at the forefront, the group of more than 75 finishers once again argued policy, learned from a lineup of high-profile speakers and honed relationships with their congress people.


The event, sponsored by the National Association for Surface Finishing and held at the Ritz Carlton, Pentagon City, was a resounding success, with attendees coming away brimming with “give it to me straight” knowledge on everything from tax policies coming down the line, to how environmental policy and health care reform will affect small business.


Keynote highlights included Andy Friedman from the Washington Update and his talk on where Washington is headed in terms of budget and taxes, and author and CBS News election analyst Norman Ornstein discussing the causes and effects of political polarization.


Attendees also came away with a full understanding of chromium, PFOS mist suppressants and the importance of supporting the current NASF lawsuit. Read more about the issue here.


For more information, visit  


NASF President Rick Delawder welcomes forum attendees. 



The Ritz Carlton, Pentagon City, was the perfect venue for the annual forum - close to the capitol, and convenient for the myriad Washington speakers invited to the event. 



NASF's Executive Director Christian Richter of The Policy Group organized the event, along with Jeff Hannapel of The Policy Group and Cheryl Larkin, NASF. 



Products Finishing's Scott Walker with Bill Krenz, Atotech.




The Washington Update's Andy Friedman delivers a straightforward talk about everything we hear about in the news, but might not fully comprehend - tax policy, what's really going on with the fiscal cliff, the deficit outlook, imminent legislative items in Washington and the President's new healthcare reform laws. 



Veronique Steukers, director of global government affairs for the Nickel Institute, chats with Dr. Keith Legg of Rowan Technology. Steukers spoke about the NASF's collaboration with the Nickel Institute and the importance of keeping nickel off of European (REACH) regulatory lists. The importance of intercontinental collaboration was reiterated again and again - European regulatory policy has vast impact on rulings in the U.S.



Norman Ornstein, resident scholar, AEI, and election analyst, CBS News, keynotes Wednesday's group lunch with his talk "It's Even Worse Than it Looks: Political Polarization in Washington." 



Ornstein's entertaining discussion highlights how far the two political parties have grown apart and elucidates the complexity of issues behind the drift. 



Rebecca Bennett of Precision Plating Co. and Cheryl Clark of the NASF head to the NASF Forum Reception, held in a congressional building on the Capitol. 



Scott Walker, Products Finishing; Christian Richter, NASF; Kate Hand, Products Finishing; and Phil Brockman, Techmetals Inc., attend the NASF Forum Reception.



As much learning and discourse happens outside the conference rooms as in, as attendees chat about company resources, how they're dealing with policy concerns and  technology strategies going forward.



Attendees enjoy the reception before heading to the next day's Capitol Hill visits. 



The beautiful ambiance certainly didn't hurt the success of the event. Washington's famed cherry trees were at their peak during the Forum. 


To learn more about the Washington Forum, visit