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Jeffrey T Schlarbaum

President and CEO, IEC Electronics Corp

Years in current role: 7

What do you enjoy most about your role?

Over the course of time I’ve been fortunate to have had the chance to be surrounded by so many talented people, so what I enjoy most is being highly involved in the process of identifying, nurturing & inspiring the talent around me to achieve exceptional results. I’ve not only experienced tremendous satisfaction knowing I’ve had some small hand in positively shaping someone’s career, but I’ve equally benefited myself from my own personal learnings throughout these unique experiences.

What has been the biggest challenge you’ve dealt with over the past year?

The global electronic supply shortage has been one of the greatest, if not the greatest obstacle I’ve experienced over the course of my career. Historically, certain raw material sources or commodities have cropped up from time to time, but unlike in the past, the more recent source of supply issues have been so broad in nature that they’ve effected virtually every industry equally, in a magnitude not ever seen before in our lifetime.

What has been your organization’s biggest success over the past year?

I would say our organization’s greatest success this past year was gaining the attention of a global electronics manufacturer which ultimately led to the acquisition of our company. The IEC Electronics franchise, with its four US based locations, is now a part of $1B+ global organization. Over the course of time, IEC became recognized for delivering consistently superior industry financial results, resulting in uncommon organic growth and expansion which was ultimately recognized by our new parent company, Creation Technologies. The acquisition resulted in an immediate 50% premium for our stockholders of record while providing new and expanded global job opportunities for the talented team members of IEC.

What do you see as the biggest changes in the technology industry over the next year?

Productivity and process improvement technologies in the form of artificial intelligence and machine learning to replace tasks previously performed by humans which can be highly inconsistent in terms of error rates and fatigue factors. The end result will lead to increased factory outputs at higher volumes, greater quality levels, while maintaining and in some cases, improving upon global price competitiveness.

What community organizations do you support as a volunteer and why?

I’ve been a longtime supporter and volunteer for Rochester area youth sports. I always embraced the opportunity to make a difference in young people’s lives though youth sports as either a mentor, coach or board member. I’ve long believed many life lessons could be acquired through involvement in youth sports so by contributing positive, constructive and impactful associations with area programs has given me much satisfaction to know I’ve contributed in small way to the development and future success of our next generation.

This profile is part of Rochester Business Journal's Power 50 Technology list for 2022. Information used in this profile was sourced from the honoree. View the full list at rbj.net.

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