Who cares about lead anyway? Improving awareness and understanding of lead and lead batteries
Strengthening Our Message by Working Together
Donna Snyder (East Penn Manufacturing Co., USA)
Changing outdated perceptions about a technology that has been in existence for over 100 years presents a unique challenge. The challenge, however, is not insurmountable for Lead Battery Technology. Exciting advancements in this very sustainable product continues to show amazing results in its performance and adaptability meeting the needs of new applications including Hybrid Vehicles, Renewable Energy, Back-up Power, Motive Power, Energy Storage and Telecommunications.
In North America there are negative perceptions around lead, and sometimes rightfully so, as it relates to legacy issues including lead in paint, water pipes and gasoline. As a result, legislators and regulators sometimes vote and write lead battery regulations making incorrect assumptions about the technology. As an industry, we would like to better support them so that they can make their decisions based on sound facts and science. For individual companies like East Penn, changing those perceptions on its own is very difficult. New technologies like Lithium Ion have established a foothold without having to meet the same standards that Lead Batteries are required to meet. These standards are important in protecting the user, the marketplace, our environment and overall industry.
By working with industry associations like the International Lead Association (ILA) and the Battery Council International (BCI) on messaging materials and the Consortium for Battery Innovation (CBI) on the science and research, East Penn has been able to enhance its own efforts with the support of materials created by these organizations. Government officials are beginning to realize the important part that lead batteries play in the security of the United States and in a vibrant economy. East Penn, itself, substantially contributes to the economy with growing manufacturing, warehousing and distribution centers across the US and Canada.
With the industry opening the dialog with legislators and regulators, East Penn was also able to leverage this coverage to help create its own impact. Volunteering time and resources for these industry campaigns have delivered real benefits for East Penn. Targeted material extracted from the industry campaign has led to a successful implementation of its own messaging increasing its social media and website presence and showing the positive influence and recognition from employees, customers, and the community. This combined effort has made a difference in creating a greater awareness of the importance and value of lead batteries.
Donna currently serves as the Vice President of Marketing and Advertising at East Penn Manufacturing. Ms. Snyder oversees all marketing and advertising functions for the company’s four divisions including cataloguing for the entire automotive market. East Penn Manufacturing is the largest privately held battery manufacturer in the world with over 10,000 employees. She has been with the company since October of 1983.
Prior to assuming her current role at East Penn, Ms. Snyder held several positions including Advertising Manager and Director of Marketing and Advertising.
Donna holds a BFA in Communication Design (Kutztown University) and an MBA in Business Management from Eastern University.
She formerly served on the Board of Directors – Friend Inc. Community Services, a not-for-profit, multi-service agency that provides a client-choice food pantry, information and referrals, budget counselling, financial crisis intervention, and facilitates partnerships with other local service providers.
Her Industry Participation includes the following:
- Member of AASA MEC Committee (Automotive Aftermarket Supplier’s Association Marketing Executive Committee)
- BCI (Battery Council International): Chairman of Marketing Committee; Member of ALBCI (Advancing Lead Battery Communication Initiative); Member Product Information Committee; Former Chairman of the Databook Committee
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