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Volk Optical Receives Presidential Award for Export Success

Second win recognizing continuing export growth for the company’s ophthalmic devices

Mentor, Ohio (May 27, 2015) –Volk Optical was awarded the President’s “E” Star Award for Exports by U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker at a ceremony in Washington, DC, Monday, May 18. 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. The “E” Star Award that Volk received recognizes previous “E” Award recipients for continued superior performance in increasing or promoting exports.

Volk Optical receives the Presidential “E” Star Award for export excellence. (From Left to Right) Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker, Volk Optical President Peter Mastores, Volk Optical Vice President of Operations Bernie Rykaczewski, and Assistant Secretary of Commerce Arun M. Kumar. Volk Optical receives the Presidential “E” Star Award for export excellence. (From Left to Right) Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker, Volk Optical President Peter Mastores, Volk Optical Vice President of Operations Bernie Rykaczewski, and Assistant Secretary of Commerce Arun M. Kumar.

Volk manufactures ophthalmic lenses and portable diagnostic imaging products that are used to diagnose and treat conditions of the eye. Eye doctors globally use Volk’s products to improve vision and help prevent blindness.

“We are honored to receive the “E” Star Award in recognition of our continued global export strategy.” said Pete Mastores, Volk’s president. “Since first winning the Presidential “E” Award for Exports in 2011, we have maintained our international focus, growing our business and creating jobs here in the U.S. This year, being one of just four manufacturers awarded the “E” Star designation is a testament to the hard work of our entire team-both here in the U.S. and around the world.

“The President's ‘E’ Award winners are outstanding American businesses and organizations that have played a crucial role in strengthening and growing our economy through increased U.S. exports,” said Secretary Pritzker. “By selling Made-in-America goods and services internationally, winners are creating jobs in Ohio and their local communities. Congratulations to Volk Optical. Exports are critical to our nation's competitiveness in the global marketplace and solidify our country's economic leadership across the globe.”

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. Today, Secretary Pritzker honored 45 U.S. companies with the President’s “E” Award for their outstanding work to reduce barriers to foreign markets and to open the door to more trade around the world.

U.S. exports of goods and services hit an all-time record of $2.34 trillion in 2014, accounting for 13.4 percent of U.S. GDP, compared to 7.5 percent 30 years ago. Nationally, jobs supported by exports reached an all-time high last year with more than 11.7 million jobs, up 1.8 million since 2009.

American companies are nominated for “E” Awards through the U.S. and Foreign Commercial Service office network, located within the Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration. Record years of successive export growth and an applicant’s demonstration of an innovative international marketing plan that led to the increase in exports is a significant factor in selecting the overall winners.

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For more information about the “E” Awards and the benefits of exporting, visit www.export.gov.