Chamber Says Its Bobblehead Project Draws Attention

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – International attention the Youngstown Warren Regional Chamber has received for its 3-D printed presidential candidate bobblehead project is just the beginning, the chamber says.

The chamber is using the life-sized bobbleheads of Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton to promote the area as a hub of advanced manufacturing research and business in the center of the so-called TechBelt, which stretches from Cleveland to Pittsburgh. The chamber will feature the bobbleheads at the Republican National Convention event in Cleveland and the presidential debate in Dayton in September.

Since announcing the project last month, the chamber has touted the effort to news organizations in Denmark and Japan and teamed with the National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum in Milwaukee to further promote this  display that showcases additive manufacturing technology in the Mahoning Valley.

In late June, representatives from the chamber and bobblehead designer Freshmade 3D, a Youngstown Business incubator portfolio company, met with a crew from the Danish Broadcasting Corp. for a documentary that will air on Sept. 11. They then met with Yoko Noge Dean, named one of the 100 most influential Japanese people in the world by Newsweek Japan, and Toyoki Nakanishi of the Nikkei Asian Review, which has a circulation of three million in Asia.

“The international attention we received following our initial announcement is just the beginning,” said Guy Coviello, vice president of government affairs. “At the convention in Cleveland and the debate in Dayton, we will have access to more than 10,000 media outlets around the world.”

Designed and produced by Freshmade 3D, with assistance from Youngstown State University and Humtown Products in Columbiana, the bobbleheads were created by applying multiple 3D-printing techniques using sand, metal and plastic.

“While bobbleheads are fun and entertaining, ours also carry a serious message: the Valley is the heart of the TechBelt, and these bobbleheads symbolize the revolutionary technology that will reindustrialize the country,” Coviello said.

The National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum in Milwaukee, founded by Brad Novak and Phil Sklar, contacted the chamber after hearing about the presidential bobbleheads and offered to help promote the venture. A website and initial membership campaign for the museum launched in 2014. A preview exhibit took place earlier this year while a  permanent location for the museum is sought.

“We were excited to see this innovative endeavor to create life-sized 3D-printed bobbleheads of the presidential candidates and look forward to working with the Regional Chamber to help promote them,” Sklar said.

Pictured: Youngstown Warren Regional Chamber vice president for government affairs Guy Coviello and Freshmade 3D cofounders Rich Wetzel and Christopher Tomko show off miniature versions of the bobblehead that will be the centerpiece of the chamber’s display at the Republican National Convention.

Copyright 2021 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.