Regional Meetings



Minneapolis Regional Meeting
April 11, 2017; 11:00am – 1:30pm
Hennepin Technical College Brooklyn Park Campus
Detroit Regional Meeting
May 17, 2017; 7:30 am – 10:00 am
Somerset Inn (
2601 W. Big Beaver Road
Troy, MI 48084
The first of the NFPA 2017 Regional Meetings will be held Tuesday, April 11, in Minneapolis. We will again partner with Hennepin Technical College,which has one of the premier A.A.S. fluid power programs in the country. The Minneapolis Regional meeting will take place at the Brooklyn Park Campus and run from 11:00 am to 1:30 pm. Instructor Jeannine Uehling and her students will provide an inside look at how they are creating the next generation of fluid power professionals. In addition, Ernie Parker, Fluid Power Instructor Emeritus, will provide an update on the upcoming NFPA Fluid Power Vehicle Challenge and may even provide a hydraulic powered vehicle of his own as an example of the technical possibilities of fluid power technology. Our lunch will be prepared by the top students of Hennepin’s Culinary Arts Department.

Register for Minneapolis

See Who’s Attending

The NFPA 2017 Detroit Regional Meeting will again be held at The Somerset Inn, on Big Beaver Road in Troy, MI, on Wednesday, May 17. This location has proven to be very convenient for many of our members and guests, so we are delighted to be back in Troy. Another throwback is that the meeting is over breakfast, with registration open at 7:30 am and the program ending at 10:00 am. This schedule makes it easier for our members & guests from outside the Detroit area to mix in some customer or supplier visits along with their Regional Meeting attendance. And to continue on the “back to the future” trend, we have invited Martin LaVelle from the Detroit branch of the Chicago Federal Reserve Bank to give us an update on the manufacturing economy for Michigan and beyond. Martin’s enthusiasm and energy always makes for an interesting presentation.

Register for Detroit

NFPA Regional Meetings offer a chance to meet with other area fluid power professionals over lunch. NFPA members and non-members alike are welcome to attend and the meetings are free! For questions, please contact Leslie Miller at 414-778-3369 or


Meetings Recap | 2016

Recap – Chicago Regional Meeting | Harper College

Mechatronics Lab - Harper College - Chicago Regional Meeting 2016The NFPA 2016 calendar of Regional Meetings ended on a high note with the Chicago Regional Meeting on December 7 at Harper College.  NFPA hosted over 40 fluid power professionals with excellent networking and many new connections marking the day. Other highlights included:

  • Special guest Donna Pollander, Executive Director of the International Fluid Power Society, was on-hand to promote the Society’s exciting, updated curriculum. NFPA and IFPS have long been partners and work together to heighten the awareness of fluid power certification.
  • The meeting’s keynote speaker was Brad Terry of the Keystone Group.  Brad’s presentation focused on the critical connection between sales and operations in manufacturing environments.
  • Another great highlight at the close of the meeting was visiting Art Peter’s Mechatronics lab to see the students’ final project of the fall semester—a very impressive packaging conveyance system.


Recap – Cleveland Regional Meeting | City Club

cleveland-regionalAfter a long hiatus, NFPA came back to Cleveland for a very successful Regional Meeting.  Long a hub of the fluid power industry, the Cleveland fluid power community came out in force to support this networking and educational event. Over 50 people convened at the historic City Club in downtown Cleveland. The program featured two excellent presenters: Alicia Booker, Vice President, Operations, Workforce, Community and Economic Development at Cuyahoga Community College, and Kim Tillstone, Principal, B & B Management Labs, LLC. Ms. Booker’s presentation provided tangible information on both recruiting and retaining talented employees, while Ms. Tillstone offered insight and tools to help manage data in your sales and operational functions.




Recap – Milwaukee Regional Meeting | Milwaukee School of Engineering

The second annual Milwaukee Regional, held on September 27, 2016, brought together over 40 NFPA members and guests to network, hear presentations, and experience the new Grohmann Towers on the Milwaukee School of Engineering campus. This year’s Milwaukee Regional featured two NFPA members presenting on solutions to well-known challenges with fluid power systems—contamination and leaks.  Bruce Riley of Ultra Clean Technologies and Thomas Braun of FasTest both showed ways to alleviate these issues in order to bring more reliability and cost effectiveness to fluid power systems.  You may view their presentations using the links below.  The meeting concluded with special tours of the MSOE Fluid Power Lab.  NFPA would like to send out a special thank you to MSOE for their help in making this meeting a success.

Presentation by Bruce Riley of Ultra Clean Technologies

Presentation by Thomas Braun of FasTest


Recap – Minneapolis Regional Meeting | Donaldson Company Global Headquarters

20160428_124941_site On April 28th, 40+ NFPA members and guests descended upon the Donaldson Company Global Headquarters in Bloomington, MN.  The event began with a delicious luncheon hosted by Donaldson and a lively round of introductions and business updates from all attendees. Our featured speaker for the day, Bob Defries, Director of Customized Training & Workforce Development at Alexandria Technical and Community College, was on hand to give us a bird’s-eye view of an exciting program — the Fluid Power and Applied Mechatronics Training and Education Center (FAMTEC). FAMTEC is a national consortium that will be led by technical education and curriculum experts at Alexandria Technical and Community College (ATCC), in Alexandria, Minnesota, with regional hubs throughout the United States. This program will leverage these industry partners to create interest and awareness of highly skilled careers in mechatronics and fluid power. The FAMTEC is expected to be a key enabler to creating the next generation of highly skilled workforce candidates for the manufacturing industry. The meeting concluded with a Donaldson facility tour — including a peek into two of their laboratories.  A special thank you to our honorary host, Scott Grossbauer, Donaldson’s Director of Global Hydraulics, the Donaldson tour guides and all of the employees of Donaldson for their gracious hospitality.


Recap – Detroit Regional Meeting | Macomb Community College

IMG_2151On March 30, Macomb Community College in Warren, MI, was the place to be for Fluid Power.   Starting off the day, 170 sixth grade students arrived to compete in the Master Pneumatic sponsored 2016 Fluid Power Challenge.  As these 42 teams worked to complete their fluid power mechanism, NFPA members were on-hand to applaud their enthusiasm.  Later that morning, the NFPA 2016 Regional Meeting convened with an additional 40+ NFPA members and guests enjoying networking time, lunch, and featured speaker Tom Zobitz, of Value Selling Associates.  Tom brought his fluid power industry experience to his presentation on Competitive Differentiation in Selling.  NFPA will continue it’s 2016 Regional Meeting Schedule on April 28 in Minneapolis where the meeting will be hosted at the Donaldson Company Global Headquarters in Bloomington, MN.