J. D. Selka, Esq., DL, BSc(Hons)

James Selka has more than 25 years of manufacturing experience and in June 2014 he became the new Chief Executive Officer of the Manufacturing Technologies Association, the trade association for companies working in the engineering-based manufacturing sector.

Having graduated from Buckingham University with a BSc (Hons) degree in Business Studies, James started his career in the International Sales department of Reliance Precision Ltd. Reliance, based at Lepton in Huddersfield, is a specialist engineering company with over 50 years’ experience in providing custom-built, high-reliability precision instrumentation to customers from a diverse range of global markets.

James joined the company in 1988 and with over 22 years with the business he held a number of senior director positions and was eventually appointed Managing Director in 1997. Under his leadership, the company grew into a dynamic profitable company with an expanding export market that won ‘preferred supplier’ status with key blue chip customers.

During his time at Reliance, James is credited with bringing clear direction and strong commercial focus both on the shop floor and in the boardroom. Helping young people to develop was also high on his agenda and having undertaken a technical apprenticeship himself prior to his degree, James was keen to introduce an in-house, fully-certified apprenticeship scheme.

In 2010, James was keen for a new challenge and, whilst looking to purchase a business, he held a number of advisory and director positions. Prior to his appointment by the Manufacturing Technologies Association, he held the position of Production Director with Aesseal, major specialists in the design and manufacture of mechanical seals and support systems.

Alongside his professional appointments, James has also been a long-standing committee member with SaBRE, (Supporting Britain’s Reservists and Employers), which aims to build support for members of the Reserve Forces from employers. He also enjoys strong links with the Reserve Forces and Cadets Association (RFCA). James was appointed an Honorary Colonel for the Yorkshire North and West Army Cadet Force in 2011.

Year Appointed: 2012