State’s internationally renowned textile companies to be part of networking fair at URI Feb. 11

Hosted by Rhode Island Textile Innovation Network, URI College of Business and Business Engagement Center

Media Contact: Dave Lavallee, 401-874-5862 |

WHAT: The first Rhode Island Textile Innovation Network Academic/Industry networking event, more than 20 industry, higher education and business groups, including: The Cooley Group, a Pawtucket company known around the world for its stadium wraps and roofs; Kenyon Industries, of Richmond, which supplies more than 60 U.S. military specification products to the U.S. Department of Defense; Navatek, of South Kingstown and Hawaii, inventor, developer, builder of advanced ship hull designs, ride control systems and unique materials for the U.S. Navy and other military agencies; ACW (American Cord & Webbing) of Woonsocket, which makes webbing and fasteners for first responders and the military; and Darlington Fabrics of Westerly, which makes fabrics used in space suits and on professional sports uniforms, including those for the NFL.

The program will expose students and URI faculty to industry leaders and those leaders to the pioneering research going on at URI. The textile network fosters collaboration among textile industry leaders, designers, academia and government with a mission to make Rhode Island a leader in advanced textile manufacturing and to recruit and train the industry’s future workforce.

Created in late 2016 by U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse and the URI Business Engagement Center, the Rhode Island Textile Innovation Network operates with planning grant funding from Real Jobs RI and the Rhode Island Commerce Corp. through fiscal agent, Polaris MEP, also an arm of the University. The networking fair is presented by the URI College of Business, the URI Business Engagement Center and the Rhode Island Textile Innovation Network.

WHO: U.S. Sen. Jack Reed, Sen. Whitehouse and U.S. Reps. Jim Langevin and David Cicilline, URI President David M. Dooley; Rhode Island Commerce Secretary Stefan Prior; University faculty; Michael Woody, chief executive officer of Trans-Tex, Cranston, R.I., URI students; Shea High School (Pawtucket) students; and URI alumni working in the industry.

WHEN: Monday, Feb. 11, 2019, 8:30 a.m. to noon. Speaking program with congressional delegation begins at 9:30 a.m.; panel discussion 10:15 a.m.

WHERE: University of Rhode Island Memorial Union Ballroom, 50 Lower College Road, Kingston Campus

TO MAKE COVERAGE ARRANGEMENTS: Contact Dave Lavallee, URI Marketing and Communications, 401-874-5862,