“As soon as the Chips Act went through in 2022, we knew it was important to keep hiring and keep expanding the building,” said Rick Plympton, CEO of Optimax, the country’s largest precision optics company, which expects more business out of the federal investments in innovation in to start this fall. “We’re hearing from the big players that they’re resetting. And they’re telling us to get ready to run hard and fast.”

It’s not about growing one or two giants like Kodak, it’s about creating a few dozen companies like Optimax, that pay well and treat people with respect, Plympton said. “The companies that do the best job taking care of their workers are the companies that are going to have the most success recruiting and retaining their workforce.”

Learn More