Operation Action U.P. to mark 50th anniversary

MARQUETTE – Operation Action U.P. will celebrate its 50th anniversary at the group’s annual meeting set for 8 a.m. Tuesday in the Great Lakes Rooms of the Bottum University Center at Northern Michigan University.

The theme of this year’s meeting is “Energizing Our Future,” with the keynote address to be given by John Hofmeister, founder and chief executive officer of “Why We Hate the Oil Companies: Straight Talk from an Energy Insider.”

The meeting will conclude after lunch.

Hofmeister, former president of Shell Oil Company, is founder and CEO of Citizens for Affordable Energy. He travels the country to educate citizens and government officials about pragmatic, non-partisan energy solutions, environmental protection, energy alternatives and other related topics.

Four Upper Peninsula businesses also will receive Awards of Excellence for 2013 at the meeting.

“Operation Action U.P.’s Board wanted to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the organization in a big way,” said Brett French, co-chairman of OAUP. “We are honored to have Mr. Hofmeister as our keynote speaker and look forward to recognizing the accomplishments of four U.P. companies as we celebrate 50 years of success.”

Operation Action U.P. is the only private-sector economic development organization in Michigan, and includes a variety of industries in the 15-counties of the U.P.

Walker L. Cisler of Detroit Edison Co., returning from a conference on the Pacific Coast in 1962, devised a plan for the Upper Peninsula, founding Operation Action and enlisting the help of Edgar L. Harden, then NMU president.

A memorandum of understanding between Cisler and Harden was created and signed on March 1, 1963, with an office opening in Marquette and William F. Wilson the first executive manager.

For more information on the organization, visit the website at www.operationactionup.org.

Christie Bleck can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 250.