Jessica Borza, Mahoning Valley Manufacturers Coalition

Borza Accepts Leadership Role at Ohio Manufacturers’ Association

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Jessica Borza, who has served as the Mahoning Valley Manufacturers Coalition’s executive director since its inception in 2011, has been named managing director of Workforce Services for The Ohio Manufacturers’ Association.

Borza begins her new job Monday.

“The work of the Manufacturers Coalition has been some of the most satisfying of my career,” Borza said.  “It’s been a real joy to collaborate with our partners and leaders in manufacturing over the years.”

Under Borza’s leadership, MVMC has grown from 18 founding members to more than 70 manufacturers, dozens more associate members and education partners in Trumbull, Mahoning and Columbiana counties. The organization has also been awarded more than $26 million in workforce development grant funding.

Borza said the MVMC has created an industry sector partnership model that has been replicated across the state, and is among the main duties that she’ll spearhead at OMC.

“For the past six or seven years, they have taken the MVMC model and replicated it – now there are 16 or so of them,” Borza said. She would continue to coordinate with those – including MVMC – and align them with state industry partners and other support efforts.

Alex Hertzer

“Jessica has poured her heart and soul into the MVMC over the past 12 years, and we are thankful for her service and the direction she set for us,” said Ryan Engelhardt, vice president of Brilex Industries and MVMC board president. “OMA is very fortunate to gain such an accomplished leader, and we all wish her well in this new endeavor.”

Alex Hertzer, who joined the MVMC in 2021 and served most recently as assistant director, was promoted to interim executive director.

“The strategic execution and direction Jessica has led over the past 10-plus years has created a stronger, more collaborative workforce ecosystem throughout the region, and I am excited to build upon this foundation as we continue to work with current and future partners to support the needs of our members,” Hertzer said.

“I look forward to Alex taking on the executive director role and feel that MVMC is in a position to continue to excel,” Engelhardt said. “I know Alex, the MVMC Board of Directors, our manufacturing and associate members and myself all look forward to building upon the foundation Jessica has worked so diligently to set up for us.”

Borza will lead the OMA Workforce Services management team. OMA leads many workforce initiatives, including supporting a statewide network of endorsed industry sector partnerships, MVMC among them.

Borza has consulted on several regional and statewide workforce development projects for OMA, including the securing of a $23.5 million Good Jobs Challenge grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration in 2022. She’s also the northeastern Ohio project lead for the state’s EV Workforce Strategy implementation and is leading the launch and implementation of Ohio’s Manufacturing Competency Model, which establishes a common language and framework for industry partners to articulate their skill needs, and education and workforce partners to align programs and resources for them.

“I may be stepping down, but I’m certainly not stepping away completely from MVMC,” Borza added. “I have tremendous confidence in Alex’s ability to continue MVMC’s growth and momentum, and because of the collaboration and synergies we’ve maintained with OMA through the years, we’ll certainly have many opportunities to work together. We’re at a place in the life cycle now that it makes sense to bring Alex on and bring in a fresh perspective.”

Pictured at top: Jessica Borza is seen at the MVMC’s quarterly meeting at the Mahoning County Career & Technical Center in 2022.

Copyright 2024 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.