WASHINGTON-President Bush has nominated William “Woody” Sutton, a retired U.S. Navy Rear Admiral, as Assistant Secretary for Manufacturing and Services. Sutton would replace Albert Frick, who served as “manufacturing czar,” as the position is called, from 2004 through 2006.

In addition to being a former naval officer, Sutton served as president of the Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute (Arlington, VA) and is a former vice chairman of the National Association of Manufacturers’ Council of Manufacturing Associations.

“Woody has been a longtime advocate and friend to manufacturers, recognizing industry’s importance to the economy and millions of American jobs,” says NAM President, John Engler. “If confirmed, his experience within the industry will allow him to expand this position, helping manufacturers create jobs and compete globally.

“The importance of this position cannot be overestimated,” Engler says. “Standing alone, U.S. manufacturing would be the eighth largest economy in the world. America remains the world’s top manufacturing country and despite suggestions to the contrary, more products than ever are now ‘Made in America.’ Woody is an exceptional nominee to become the President’s point person for the industry to continue this trend.”