Michael Kitching, President and CEO, GB Remanufacturing, Inc., is the recipient of the 2020 Michael Cardone Leadership Award. The award, presented by MERA - The Association for Sustainable Manufacturing, recognises individuals who demonstrate exceptional leadership in remanufacturing and sustainability.
The award was presented during the MERA 10th Anniversary Celebration on 25 February 2021, by MERA President and COO John Chalifoux, MERA Founding Chairman Michael Cardone, Jr. and MERA Director Michael Cardone III, who also serves as President of MC3 Capital. At the virtual event, Chalifoux highlighted the legacy of the Cardone family, and all three individuals recognised Kitching for his vision, passion, teamwork and excellence – the key traits associated with the award.
“This award recognises individuals and companies that have elevated the recognition, visibility and acceptance of the remanufacturing industry in the global economy and supply chain,” said Michael Cardone Jr. “It takes a leader with a passion for excellence and a great team, so we also congratulate your team at GB Remanufacturing for what you’ve done together for our industry, especially during the pandemic.”
In the spring of 2020, at the start of the pandemic in the United States, Michael Kitching and his team at GB Remanufacturing wanted to help. After reaching out to Long Beach Memorial Medical Center in California, Kitching was asked if GB Remanufacturing could produce a critical ventilator part that was in short supply. Kitching immediately agreed and challenged his engineering department to develop a solution, and to do it stat. Rather than 3D print single-use parts, the GB Remanufacturing team decided to machine the parts out of a material that could be used multiple times after enduring a high-temperature disinfecting process. This approach would allow the part to be used multiple times, significantly increasing the number of available ventilators. GB Remanufacturing moved fast and donated dozens of parts to the hospital. Their quick action undoubtedly helped patients and addressed a weak link that was identified by the hospital at the start of the COVID-19 crisis.
“Michael, your action really encapsulates the creativity of remanufacturers and our reliance on amazing people,” said Michael Cardone III. “You embody what remanufacturing stands for and we are excited to see you receive this award today.”
“Wow, coming from you, two pioneers in the remanufacturing industry, it couldn’t mean more,” said Michael Kitching. “I feel very blessed. The team was given a great opportunity to help, and we did.”
In 2017, the MERA Board of Directors announced the formation of the Michael Cardone Leadership Award in honor of three generations in the Cardone family. In 1970, Michael Cardone Jr. co-founded CARDONE Industries with his late father Michael Cardone Sr. The company grew to become the largest family-owned remanufacturer of automotive parts in the world. Previous recipients of the Michael Cardone Leadership Award are:
Byron Schneidman, Partner, RSM US LLP (2019)
Woody Knopf, Former Chairman, Knopf Automotive (2018)
Eric Smith, Owner, Impression Products (2017)