What is the main focus of the American Foundry Society?
AFS focuses on three critical elements: Advocate-Educate-Innovate.
“Advocate” has two parts. First, AFS works full-time advocating for public policies that support a stronger business climate for metalcasting and manufacturing. Our Government Affairs Committee, annual Government Affairs Fly-In, and Washington, D.C. office are central to this function. Second, we advocate for the use of castings through our magazines, trade shows, summits, conferences, educational materials, and student outreach.
“Educate” refers to both the classroom and Foundry E-Learning training courses we offer, as well as the educational conferences, papers and panels we sponsor throughout the year.
“Innovate” refers to the forward-thinking work AFS does in sponsoring research and leading the metalcasting industry into the future.
What is the economic impact of the metalcasting industry?
Metalcasting is a $44.3 billion industry in the U.S. alone, employing nearly 200,000 persons. Learn more about the industry in the About Metalcasting section of this website.
What types of career opportunities are offered by the metalcasting industry?
Metalcasting offers exceptional career opportunities for those with the right skills. The positions available include business managers, plant managers, metallurgists, engineers, quality experts, maintenance supervisors, production specialists, sales and marketing specialists, and numerous other positions.
Other opportunities include suppliers, casting buyers, specifiers, and designers who work with manufacturers who purchase castings. AFS offers a job board. We partner with the Foundry Educational Foundation (FEF), which can be contacted via this website. Further information about careers can be found in the Careers in Metalcasting section of this website.
What types of companies join AFS?
Well over 800 companies have chosen to align themselves with AFS as Corporate Members. The majority of AFS Corporate Members are small to mid-sized manufacturing companies.
Corporate members include foundries, industry suppliers, and designers and purchasers of castings, as well as small consulting organizations. Many are family-owned, privately-held businesses.
What these companies have in common is a commitment to support the mission of AFS and to gain a strong ROI on their investment. Details can be found on the AFS Corporate Member Advantage webpage.
AFS also offers memberships for individuals, students, and other membership classes.
Can AFS help foundries attract and win new customers?
Yes, AFS plays a major role in helping hundreds of foundries attract new business. First, by becoming a Corporate Member of AFS, your foundry gains high-visibility online directory listings. Second, exhibiting in the Cast in North America (CINA) section of the annual Metalcasting Congress puts you face to face with potentially new and existing parts purchasers. Third, advertising in Casting Source magazine delivers your message directly to thousands of parts purchasers and designers. Fourth, another great way to reach casting purchasers is by posting your promotional or informational video to Foundry Video Central at a cost of $1,200 for 12 months. AFS attracts parts purchaser traffic to Video Central continuously throughout the year. To discuss a comprehensive solution for increasing your casting sales, contact Ben Yates at firstname.lastname@example.org or 847-824-0181 x 205.
Can AFS help casting-industry suppliers increase sales?
Yes, AFS plays a pivotal role in helping many suppliers of equipment, technology and consumables to the $44.3 billion metalcasting industry. First, by sustaining a Corporate Membership, your company gains high-visibility online listings and deep discounts to AFS events. Second, exhibiting each year in the Metalcasting Congress, North America’s premier trade show for the foundry industry supply chain, puts you face to face with your current customers and hundreds of potential new customers. Third, advertising in Modern Casting magazine is the only effective way to keep your name in front of the largest audience throughout the year. Fourth, suppliers should consider sponsoring and/or attending the Foundry Leadership Summit, an annual event every September that attracts the leaders of the industry. Great business relationships are developed and deepened at that event. Finally, another great way to reach foundry leaders and purchasing managers with your message is through Supplier Video Central at a cost of $1,200 for 12 months. AFS attracts foundry purchaser traffic to Video Central throughout the year. To discuss a comprehensive solution for increasing your sales to the foundry industry, contact Ben Yates at email@example.com or 847-824-0181 x 205.
Are dues and contributions tax-deductible?
AFS membership dues are tax-deductible as a business expense, but not as a charitable contribution. However, contributions to the AFS Institute, our education arm, are fully tax-deductible.
How do I become a member of AFS?
Becoming a member of AFS is simple. Simply join online or call us at (800) 537-4237 and ask to speak to Ben Yates, vice president of business development. We understand that every business and individual has unique objectives. We’ll work with you to help ensure you receive the maximum ROI on your membership investment.
How can an AFS membership help grow my business?
Visit our Corporate Membership Advantage page for a quick summary of the ROI you'll enjoy as a Corporate Member.
Does AFS have members outside of the United States?
Yes. Most members are in North America. However, AFS does have corporate and individual members outside of North America, as well.
How can I learn about AFS events being held across North America?
Visit the Events section of the AFS website for a complete listing of AFS events and member-involvement opportunities.
How do I get involved in a regional chapter?
To get involved at the regional level, contact your local chapter leader, or attend the next meeting. AFS has more than 40 industry chapters, as well as many student chapters. Information on chapters can be found on the AFS website. We encourage your involvement in chapters!
How do I get involved in AFS committees?
One of the best ways to advance your career, advance your company’s business objectives, and give back to the industry is through participating in a committee. AFS has more than three dozen technical and management committees and working groups, listed on this web page. Most of the committees are open to all interested members. Contact AFS and ask to be added to the committees of your choice. Several committees have limits on the number of members. Those interested in being considered for future vacancies should contact the staff liaisons for consideration (Government Affairs – Doug Kurkul or Stephanie Salmon; Human Resources – Cathy Potts).
What other ways can I connect with AFS?
In addition to serving on AFS committees and being involved in regional chapters, AFS is active on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram. Moreover, AFS offers the Casting Connection resource, which allows AFS members to interact with fellow members, post technical and management questions, and receive answers from peers. Casting Connection is a valuable and exclusive members-only benefit.
Can I participate in AFS technical and management committees without becoming a member?
Participation in AFS committees is limited to members in good standing. Admission to AFS events is often available to non-members; however, members receive substantial breaks on pricing. To join, please call us at (800) 537-4237.
How does the AFS metalcasting library work?
AFS maintains one of the world’s premier metalcasting libraries, with a broad variety of print and digital resources. This includes virtually every AFS Metalcasting Conference presentation, journal article, or magazine feature dating back to the 1890s! It is an extraordinarily valuable members-only resource. Members enjoy unlimited access to articles, which formerly cost at least $20 per article. If you are a member, click here to access the library.
Does AFS offer a Speaker’s Bureau?
Yes! The AFS Speakers Bureau includes AFS staff members as well as AFS members who are industry experts. For a list of speakers and topics, click here.
Does AFS have a working relationship with the Foundry Educational Foundation (FEF) and university metalcasting programs?
AFS works closely with FEF, which is co-located at AFS headquarters. AFS also has working relationships with many professors and academic programs.
A list of AFS student chapters can be found here. The staff liaisons to student chapters are Katelyn Stanek, Director of Marketing & Communications, and Katie Matticks, IT Project Manager at (800) 537-4237.
Is AFS a lobbying organization?
Yes, AFS is an aggressive advocate for the metalcasting industry. At any given time, we are lobbying on more than 20 different issues that affect the business climate for metalcasters.
These efforts are vitally important. No matter how efficiently one operates a foundry or supplier business, if public policies and the business climate are not conducive to metalcasting and manufacturing success, it will be more difficult for the business to thrive, grow, and create jobs.
When you support our advocacy efforts through a Corporate Membership, participating in the annual Government Affairs Fly-In, and responding to AFS Action Alerts when issued.
I am planning my estate. Can I remember AFS education programs in my will?
Yes. The AFS Institute is a 501(c)(3) non-profit group that accepts donations and charitable contributions. Your donation will help provide for training programs for metalcasters for many years to come.
Who should I contact with other questions?
Membership and advertising inquiries can be directed to Business Development at 847-803-5278. Other inquiries can be directed to Customer Service Department at 800-537-4237; or Marketing & Communications at 847-803-2909.