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Governor Snyder Honors Connor Sports as "Michigan Agriculture Exporter of the Year"

Agency: Agriculture and Rural Development

August 15, 2013

Media Contact: 
Heather Throne, MDARD or 517-373-1085

Rob Grom, Conner Sports, International Operations Manager or 847-345-4194
Lauren Gillian, Marketing Manager or 312-860-3211
AMASA, Mich. - The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) is pleased to announce Connor Sports of Amasa, MI, as the “Michigan Agriculture Exporter of the Year.”  Connor Sports has been a long-term exporter that has demonstrated a consistent commitment to serving customers in 40 plus countries on six continents.

“I’m pleased that we’re recognizing Connor Sports for its success in the international marketplace.  Customers around the globe now make up more than a quarter of Connor Sports’ business and that growth has created more jobs here in Michigan.  The agricultural products grown and processed in Michigan are the best in the world and gaining a growing share of the global markets.  Connor Sports is a prime example of that and I congratulate the company and its employees for their success.  Food and agriculture exports support nearly 20,000 jobs in Michigan and I’m fully committed to supporting the agri-businesses and food processors that are helping to reinvent Michigan and creating jobs,” the governor said.

“Connor Sports is an excellent choice for the award. They are a long term player in the export market and have experienced year over year growth in their exports,” said MDARD Director Jamie Clover Adams.  “It was clear that Connor Sports has taken a very tactical and successful approach to reaching out across the globe to find potential export markets.”

Connor Sports manufactures Northern Hard Maple sourced from Michigan into strip flooring for sports flooring applications. Additionally, Connor Sports designs and manufactures proprietary subfloor technology that meet the highest level of sports performance characteristics tested and certified by the United States Sports Laboratory. In the past five years, Connor Sports has grown their exports from 10 percent of the firm’s overall business to 26 percent of overall business. This increase in business has allowed Connor Sports to hire additional employees for design, manufacturing, and customer service. 

“Connor Sports is honored to be awarded Ag Exporter of the Year by the State of Michigan.  We’re very proud of our 100+ year old roots in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula and are excited to be recognized as a major contributor to the state’s export initiative,” said Jon Isaacs, General Manager, Connor Sports.  “We look forward to continuing our success in years to come and being a spotlight for the State of Michigan.”

Michigan is second in the nation for agricultural diversity and exports one-third of its agricultural commodities every year. Michigan food and agriculture exports totaled nearly $2.8 billion in 2011 according to USDA figures, and resulted in almost 20,000 jobs.

The award review committee consisted of representatives from the Van Andel Global Trade Center, Comerica Bank, Michigan Farm Bureau and Michigan State University’s International Business Center. 

For information on MDARD’s International Marketing Program, contact Jamie Zmitko-Somers at (517) 241-3628 or visit


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