Lieutenant Governor tours local business for defense-related plan

KINGSFORD — Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley made a trip to the U.P. Tuesday to tour a local business and learn about its defense-related work.

Calley visited Lakeshore Systems Inc. in Kingsford earlier this afternoon as a part of a developing strategic plan entitled Protect and Grow.The company designs and manufactures equipment for marine defense and underground hard rock mining industries.

Calley said the defense industry in Michigan is one of the state’s best kept secrets and is hoping to let that secret out and build the industry. There are over 100,000jobs within the defense field for private companies, like Lakeshore.

“One of the problems that we’re facing around the state is finding people with the right skills to fill the positions so this company can take advantage of all the work that’s out there,” Calley said. “This was some good insight into that, in both defense-related work and a discussion to get a better sense on what types of skills the company needs in their workforce today and in the future.”

Calley said engineering, welding and manufacturing skills were in high demand for these types of jobs.

“Most companies are saying today, if I get someone who is a hard worker, wants to learn and will show up every day, then there’s a spot here for them and that’s an exciting time,” said Calley. “We want to make sure that companies like this aren’t in a position where they have to turn away work or turn away opportunities because they don’t have the size of the workforce that they need.”

Calley added that the opportunity in this field is great and will help develop a talent-based workforce.