Conference Receives President’s “E” Award for Export Service

October 22, 2020 - U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross today notified the Conference of Great Lakes St. Lawrence Governors & Premiers of its selection to receive the President’s “E” Award for Export Service. The President’s “E” Award is the highest recognition any U.S. entity can receive for making a significant contribution to the expansion of U.S. exports.

Secretary Ross said in his congratulatory letter, “The Great Lakes St. Lawrence Governors & Premiers has demonstrated a sustained commitment to export expansion. The “E” Awards Committee was very impressed with your organization’s implementation of this unique, non-competitive, cross-border partnership to pool resources in furtherance of export growth for the region. The organization’s trade missions over the previous four years that brought 146 companies to 13 foreign markets were also particularly notable. The Great Lakes St. Lawrence Governors & Premiers’ achievements have undoubtedly contributed to national export expansion efforts that support the U.S. economy and create American jobs.”

“We are honored to receive this award on behalf of our organization’s trade partnership.  We are fortunate to work with an exceptional group of organizations and professionals from our member States, Provinces and foreign offices.  Powering exports is key to our mission and we thank Secretary Ross and the U.S. Department of Commerce for this recognition,” said David Naftzger, Executive Director for the Great Lakes St. Lawrence Governors & Premiers.

The Great Lakes St. Lawrence Governors & Premiers (GSGP) unites the chief executives from Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Ontario, Pennsylvania, Québec and Wisconsin. Through GSGP, the Governors and Premiers work as equal partners to grow the region’s $6 trillion economy and protect the world’s largest system of surface fresh water.

GSGP coordinates a nationally recognized, award-winning partnership among its member States and Provinces to assist small and medium-sized companies from the region in exporting their goods and services. GSGP’s responsive and comprehensive approach is focused on expanding product and service sales, driving regional economic growth and creating jobs. GSGP manages a network of 15 shared international trade offices around the world covering 98+ countries and annually organizes a program of multi-State/Provincial trade missions. 

About the “E” Awards. In 1961, President Kennedy signed an executive order reviving the World War II “E” symbol of excellence to honor and provide recognition to America's exporters. Criteria for the award is based on four years of successive export growth and case studies which demonstrate valuable support to exporters resulting in increased exports for the company’s clients.  For more information about the “E” Awards and the benefits of exporting, visit

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