Foster visits TMA member DuPage Precision

Congressman Bill Foster (C) visited TMA member DuPage Precision Products’ CEO and owner Dennis Flynn (L) and manager Mike Flynn (R)

More TMA members host federal and state lawmakers

AURORA—US Congressman Bill Foster (D-11) listened attentively as Michael Flynn, manager of DuPage Precision Products, Inc. in Aurora, IL, sketched out what his company does to make the world a better place and how public policy directly affects its ability to stay healthy and grow in Illinois. 

Foster, now the only Ph.D. physicist in Congress, has experience as a business owner. At age 19, Rep. Foster and his brother Fred started a theatrical lighting company in their family’s basement. Starting with $500 from their parents, they built Electronic Theatre Controls, which now manufactures over half of the theater lighting equipment in the US. 

With that business experience, the congressman actively engaged with Flynn on topics of importance to the TMA member. 

“From reading his biography, we knew that he was much more knowledgeable about both the science of manufacturing and actually operating a business than the average politician,” Flynn told TMANews. 

“He was genuinely interested in manufacturing, our processes, tools, staffing, unemployment fraud, entry-level compensation, and safety.”

Even though Foster’s visit schedule was tight, and he did not have time for a town hall with DuPage Precision’s employees, he encouraged the employees by taking time to visit their facility. 

“Our employees, of course, knew he was coming and saw him on the tour. It was positive and meaningful for them,” Flynn said.  

The tour with Foster was the second time DuPage Precision has hosted a politician, he said. 

“I would happily host every politician that has our company in their districts,” Flynn said. 

Flynn graciously joined the ranks of TMA members who have hosted local, state, and federal lawmakers for the past couple of years. 

Partially in response to the urging of state legislative leadership, more and more Technology & Manufacturing Association members are welcoming those that make federal and state laws affecting their businesses. 

“We’ve heard directly from lawmakers how their visits affect their thoughts on the manufacturing industry. So many of them are not aware of the types of manufacturing going on in their districts. When they see the products and the impact of those items on everyday lives, they are proud and think of the faces they’ve encountered during their visits,” said Fran Eaton of TMA’s Advocacy Team. 

“It’s an important activity that any TMA member can offer their local elected officials. Of course, the TMA Advocacy Team is happy to make the arrangements for these visits,” she said. 

Flynn said it isn’t necessary to agree with politicians’ views on business for them to visit district facilities. 

“Rep. Foster and I certainly disagree about most policy issues, solutions, root causes, and ways forward,” Flynn said. 

But there is a bright side to that, he said. 

“Perhaps this real world, soft-sell touchpoint at DuPage Precision Products brought some value to him,” Flynn said. 

To arrange a Legislative Connect visit, contact TMA at