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Workshops: $800/$1600 USD
$600/$1200 for conference attendees
Lean Transformation Summit Speakers
Chairman Lean Global Network; Senior Advisor, Lean Enterprise Institute
John Shook learned about lean management while working for Toyota for 11 years in Japan and the U.S., helping it transfer production, engineering, and management systems from Japan to NUMMI and other operations around the world. While at Toyota's headquarters, he became the company's first American kacho (manager) in Japan. In the U.S., Shook joined Toyota’s North American engineering, research and development center in Ann Arbor, Michigan as general manager of administration and planning. His last position with Toyota was as senior American manager with the Toyota Supplier Support Center in Lexington, Kentucky, assisting North American companies adopt the Toyota Production System. Shook co-authored Learning to See, the book that introduced the world to value-stream mapping. He also co-authored Kaizen Express, a bi-lingual manual of the essential concepts and tools of the Toyota Production System. With Managing to Learn, Shook revealed the deeper workings of the A3 management process that is at the heart of Toyota’s management and leadership.
Shook is an industrial anthropologist with a master’s degree from the University of Hawaii, a bachelor’s degree from the University of Tennessee, and is a graduate of the Japan-America Institute of Management Science. At the University of Michigan, he was director of the Japan Technological Management Program and faculty member of the Department of Industrial and Operations Engineering.
Shook is the author of numerous articles, including "How to Change a Culture: Lessons from NUMMI"; Sloan Management Review, January 2010, which won Sloan’s Richard Beckhard Memorial Prize for outstanding article in the field of organizational development.
Plenary and Breakout Speakers
President & CEO, Legal Seafoods
Chief Operating Officer, SunPower
Marty joined SunPower as Chief Operating Officer in 2008 bringing more than 25 years of experience leading the deployment and ramp-up of cost effective, scalable operations processes and systems. He is responsible for leading the company’s research and development, supply chain and global manufacturing operations. SunPower is a purpose-driven company and an innovation pioneer, producing the world’s highest efficiency, most reliable, eco-friendly solar products. Neese leads distributed operations across four continents, supplying over 30 countries with solar energy product solutions. Under his leadership, SunPower received an industry-first Cradle to Cradle Silver Certification for solar panels produced in its Mexico and France facilities and was recognized by the Guardian for innovation as a sustainable business. SunPower is a charter member of the Circular Economy 100. Neese is a graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point and received his MBA from the University of Florida.
President, Phase 2 Medical Manufacturing Inc.
Adam Prime is president of Phase 2 Medical Manufacturing, a contract manufacturer of single-use medical devices, based in Rochester, NH.
Prime began working at Phase 2 in 1998, after hanging up his carpenter’s belt. He became president one year later, taking the fledgling seven-employee company from a nonscalable business model to its current position as a top supplier to the largest medical device company in the world.
Through the ongoing adoption of lean manufacturing and management techniques, Prime and the Phase 2 team transformed the now 150-employee company. Under his leadership, Phase 2 developed scalable operational systems, added a state-of-the-art cleanroom in Tijuana, Mexico, and implemented design and injection molding capabilities. Prime holds a bachelor’s degree in geology from St. Lawrence University.
senior vice president and chief information officer (CIO) of Application & Data Services, Nationwide
Guru Vasudeva is senior vice president and chief information officer (CIO) of Application & Data Services at Nationwide, a financial services and insurance company. In this role, Vasudeva manages a shared services organization that provides project management, application development, data and analytics, and IT help desk services for the enterprise. He is also responsible for the lean and agile transformation of application development and maintenance functions across Nationwide.
Prior to this role, he held several senior leadership positions at Nationwide including enterprise chief technology officer (CTO), business unit CIO, and chief architect. In these roles, Vasudeva led several functions including IT strategy, enterprise architecture, cyber security, disaster recovery, large program management, and application development and maintenance.
He is co-author of the book, Patterns for e-Business – A Strategy for Reuse, which has proven effective in bridging the business and IT gap by quickly reaching IT solutions that satisfy business intent. Vasudeva holds a variety of awards, including the IBM Outstanding Innovation Award and the IBM Corporate Award. He earned a Master’s in International Finance from the University of Cincinnati in Ohio, and a Bachelor’s in Computer Science from the University of Mysore in India.
Learning Session Speakers
Founder and president, Thrustmaster of Texas, Inc
Joe Bekker, founder and president, Thrustmaster of Texas, Inc., came to Houston from The Netherlands in 1979 and never looked back.
He left his original employer, Byron Jackson Pump, to start a successful trading company. When he received an order through the company from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for a small 85-horsepower outboard propulsion unit, Bekker, who always enjoyed manufacturing, decided to make it himself. From that first product, used on small lock and dam maintenance barges, Thrustmaster grew to a $150-million company, building powerful thrusters for some of the most sophisticated ships in the world, modern deep-water drill ships. The company serves a wide range of markets, including subsea pipe laying and construction vessels, paddlewheel gambling boats, and offshore wind turbines. Roughly 75% of its business is overseas.
Bekker holds a bachelor’s in mechanical engineering from the University of Amsterdam. He is a member of the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers and the American Society of Naval Engineers.
CEO, Modus Cooperandi
A pioneer in applying Lean and Kanban to knowledge work, Jim is the creator of Personal Kanban and co-author of Personal Kanban: Mapping Work | Navigating Life, winner of the Shingo Research and Publication Award. His other books include Why Plans Fail, Why Limit WIP, and Beyond Agile. He is the CEO of Modus Cooperandi, and co-founder of Modus Institute. For the past two decades Jim has worked at uncovering ways for individuals and groups to communicate, collaborate, and find clarity in unpredictable and amorphous environments.
President, Instituto Lean Management Spain
As director of the Instituto Lean in Barcelona, Spain, Oriol Cuatrecasas has helped many organizations start and sustain their lean transformations.
Besides his work with the institute, Cuatrecasas conducts research into lean management, teaches workshops, and lectures at the Polytechnic University of Catalonia (UPC). He is a member of the UPC faculty for MBA programs and master courses in production, lean practice, and project management. Previously, he worked in the auto industry, where he learned lean principles from Toyota sensei. He holds an industrial engineering degree from UPC.
Since her career began, Jean Cunningham has been breaking new ground. At the former Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) in Maynard, MA, she was the innovative company’s first woman plant controller, using a fully engaged team approach to create excellence in the function. She later moved from DEC finance to operations.
Between 1993 and 2005 Jean served as CFO at two manufacturing companies, where she broke new ground integrating lean manufacturing with finance, IT, HR, marketing, and other business functions.
As CFO and vice president for administration at capital equipment maker Lantech, she played a key role in one of the earliest examples of lean production success and lean enterprise innovation. Lantech’s transformation was featured in Harvard Business Review, business best-seller Lean Thinking, and The Work of Management, published by LEI in 2017. She later became CFO of Marshfield Door Systems.
Jean is one of the original thought leaders behind the Lean Accounting Summit and the Lean HR Summit. She is a board member of the nonprofit Lean Education Advancement Foundation, which provides scholarships for undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral students and faculty to attend lean management conferences or conducted research.
From 2006-2011, she was the voluntary CFO of the Association of Manufacturing Excellence. "In 2006, she founded Illinois-based Jean Cunningham Consulting, and for the past 13 years has provided strategic guidance, lean management coaching, and other continuous improvement practices globally to companies in manufacturing, services, and healthcare."
Writing and Painting
A sought-after speaker and keynoter at conferences, Jean was inducted into the AME Hall of Fame for Manufacturing Excellence in 2018. The next year, she was inducted into the Shingo Academy, which honors business leaders who have distinguished themselves in operational excellence. She teaches Lean Accounting at the Ohio State University Master of Business Operational Excellence program.
Despite a busy schedule, Jean has found the time to write three business management books. She is co-author of the acclaimed, Real Numbers: Management Accounting in a Lean Organization, an essential text for learning lean accounting. She is co-author of Easier, Simpler, Faster on applying lean principles to IT processes. Both books were awarded a Shingo Prize for Research in 2004 and 2008, respectively. In 2018, she published The Value Add Accountant, a follow-up to Real Numbers on how finance and accounting can innovate and add value in strategic improvement efforts.
When she isn’t helping companies start or advance continuous improvement systems, Jean enjoys swimming and painting. She holds a bachelor’s in accounting from Indiana University and a master’s from Northeastern University’s Executive Program.
Process Training Supervisor, Kinross – Round Mountain
Deanna Hall learned about lean concepts while working for a gold mine in rural Nevada for the last nine years. From heavy equipment operation, hiking large man-made gold mountains to install irrigation lines, to metallurgical laboratory testing, smelting & pouring gold bars in refinery operations, supervision, training and development of the workforce. Nevada Mining Association named Ms. Hall the “Trainer of the Year” in 2013.
In her current role as Process Training Supervisor, Deanna accepted a rotational position in the Leadership Development Program at RMGC where she is learning & promoting the Continuous Improvement culture and methodology across the mine site.
Deanna is active in many volunteer activities that promote health and fundraising for local charities. She currently holds the position of Secretary for the nonprofit organization HOPE (Helping Out People Everyday) in rural Nevada & directs and facilitates an Art club. She is also an active member of the Women’s Mining Coalition and visits Washington DC yearly to promote the education of mining to members of the legislation.
Executive Director, Center for Quality People & Organizations (CQPO)
Michael Hoseus, a co-author of the Shingo Award-winning book Toyota Culture, developed his TPS skills at Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky where he worked at the General Manager level in both Production and Human Resources being mentored by his Japanese sensei. His Toyota process experience includes production, engineering, maintenance, safety, personnel, employee relations, benefits/payroll and training and development. He learned first-hand how Toyota’s success hinges on integrating their production and human systems to create the Toyota Way. Mike is the Executive Director of the Center for Quality People and Organizations and President of Lean Culture Enterprises. He supports organizations in their lean journey, focusing on leadership and cultural aspects of the lean transformation. He is an adjunct professor with the University of Kentucky’s Center for Manufacturing.
Senior Vice President, Human Resources, Tri-Arrows Aluminum, Inc.
Cheryl M. Jekiel oversees the Lean Leadership Resource Center, which provides access to a range of materials for lean enterprises, including special components for lean cultures, general lean leadership development and Human Resources leaders.
With over 25 years of manufacturing experience, most recently Ms Jekiel has held Vice President of Human Resources positions for Tri-Arrows Aluminum Inc., FONA International, Inc. and Flying Food Group, LLC. Ms. Jekiel served for five years as the Chief Operating Officer after a number of other leadership roles at a Specialty Bakery in the Chicagoland area. Ms. Jekiel has developed an expertise in Lean manufacturing with a particular focus on Lean cultures. Ms. Jekiel has made countless significant improvements in reducing operating costs and leveraging a Lean culture to obtain stronger and sustainable results.
Ms. Jekiel brings a tremendous passion for continuous improvement in her commitment to building Lean HR as a recognized field of work and is the author of “Lean Human Resources: Redesigning HR Processes for a Lean Culture”.
Lean Leader, Herman Miller Inc.
Ted Larned has been on the Herman Miller Performance System team for 16 years, supporting development of continuous improvement environments. Currently working in product development, he has coached people at all levels in Herman Miller and supplier plants, healthcare clinics, and functional areas such as quality and product engineering. He has 24 years of experience in furniture manufacturing.
Senior Lean Coach, Lean Enterprise Institute
LEI Faculty, Markovitz Consulting
Earlier in his career, Daniel Markovitz held management positions in product marketing at MarkBuilt Construction, Sierra Designs, Adidas, CNET and Asics Tiger. He also has experience as an entrepreneur, having founded his own skateboarding footwear company. He left the business when he realized that he’d need tattoos and body pierces in really painful locations to fit into the industry. Dan helps individuals and teams improve performance by applying lean concepts to knowledge work through his company TimeBack Management. His new book, A Factory of One, was published by Productivity Press in December 2011. Dan has also published articles in the Harvard Business Review blog, Quality Progress, Industry Week magazine, Reliable Plant magazine, and Management Services Journal, among other magazines. He is a faculty member at the Lean Enterprise Institute and teaches frequently at the Stanford University Continuing Studies Program. He also leads a class on A3 thinking at the Ohio State University’s Fisher School of Business. Dan holds a BA from Wesleyan University and an MBA from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business.
Engineering Manager, Herman Miller
John Miller has spent the last five years helping to implement lean into the product development process at Herman Miller, where he has worked for 15 years. During his 25-year-career in product development, he has worked primarily in dimensional engineering and engineering management.
Continuous Improvement Manager, Thrustmaster of Texas
Frank Montemayor, continuous improvement manager at Thrustmaster of Texas, Inc.,
has over 15-years of experience in diverse manufacturing markets. Whether working with high-volume consumer products or high-mix, low-volume maritime heavy equipment, Montemayor has leveraged his knowledge of process engineering and lean management to lead numerous successful business improvements from the shop floor to product development.
Trained in lean, and six sigma, he holds a bachelor’s in engineering from the University of Houston.
Continuous Improvement Facilitator, Kinross - Round Mountain
Vicente Ramirez has 23 years of open pit mining experience in the copper and gold mining industry. During his career, Vicente attained a wide variety of mining experience from heavy equipment operation to equipment dispatching and mining crew supervision including team leadership, facilitation, training and development. Kinross named Mr. Ramirez the 2014 Silver Award Winner for “Outstanding Corporate Citizenship”.
In his current role as a CI Facilitator Vicente works with various departments across the mine helping to break down silos and improve communication and teamwork across their mine.
Vicente is active in many volunteer activities. He is dynamically involved with coaching and volunteering youth sports events such as High school football, JR High track, soccer, karate. As well as helping to promote health and fundraising for local charities such as the Local Food Bank, Adopt a Family for the Holidays and the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Nevada Mining Association named Mr. Ramirez “Safety Champion” for the state of Nevada in 2013.
Co-Owner, Teaching Lean Inc.
Ernie has 25 years of Manufacturing and Human Resources management experience which allows him to see the cultural dynamics from both functional areas of a company. He gained this experience at Toyota Motor Manufacturing where he grew from Team Leader, to Group Leader, to Assistant Manager on the manufacturing side. After which he moved to HR, assuming, at different times, responsibility for skill development programs, safety and medical management.
As Acting Medical Director for Toyota Engineering and Manufacturing North America, Ernie was responsible for nine on-site medical clinics across Toyota North America (convenience care, full-primary care, and occupational care). He was also responsible for disability management (as described above) North American wide. Ernie worked at IBM for 8 years before joining Toyota. Currently, Ernie shares his extensive experience with members of the lean community as a co-owner of Teaching Lean and a Faculty member of the Lean Enterprise Institute. He is coauthor with Tracey Richardson of The Toyota Engagement Equation.
Co-Owner, Teaching Lean Incorporated
Tracey has over 29 year’s combined experience in different roles within Toyota and learned lean practices as a group leader at Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky from 1988-1998. She was one of the first team members hired, with the fortunate opportunity to learn directly from Japanese trainers. As a group leader and quality circle advisor, she learned first-hand about lean tools and culture development.
For the last 19 years, as president of Teaching Lean, Inc. Tracey has worked with Toyota North American plants, and other companies on their lean journeys, helping them develop the capabilities of employees, including team members and company leaders. Using problem-solving and aligning daily activities with company business plans, she helps them create lean cultures that are the foundations for long-term sustainability.
Tracey is an active coach and contributor to LEI’s The Lean Post. She teaches several problem-solving and A3 workshops as an LEI faculty member. She is coauthor of the new book The Toyota Engagement Equation.
Chief Information Officer, University of Michigan Hospitals and Health Centers
Sue Schade is chief information officer for the University of Michigan Hospitals and Health Centers (UMHHC), which along with the U-M Medical School constitute the University of Michigan Health System (UMHS). Schade provides direction and oversight to information technology initiatives at UMHHC, which includes120 clinics and three hospitals with 990 beds.
Under her leadership, UMHS made HealthCare’s Most Wired list in 2015. Last year she also made 50 Top Healthcare IT Experts (Health Data Management; 11 Hospital IT Executives You Should Follow on Twitter, (Health Data Management); and 50 Leaders in Health IT (Becker’s Health IT & CIO Review).
Schade has nearly 30 years’ experience in healthcare information technology management. Prior to joining UMHS, she served for over 12 years as the CIO for Brigham and Women’s Hospital, a founding member of the Partners HealthCare System in Boston, MA. Her previous experience includes 12 years in positions of increasing management responsibility at a large integrated delivery system in the Chicago area. She holds a master’s degree in business from Illinois Benedictine College in Lisle, IL.
General Manager, Thrustmaster of Texas, Inc
Author and Consultant, Art of Lean
Art Smalley is a renowned expert specializing in leadership, problem solving, and operational improvement.
In the latter part of the 1980s Art was one of the first Americans to work for Toyota Motor Corporation in Japan, first studying at different universities in Japan and then learning the principles of TPS in the historic Kamigo engine plant where Taiichi Ohno was the founding plant manager. Art also played an instrumental role in the development and transfer of TPS methods and precision equipment to Toyota’s overseas plants.
After a decade in Japan, Art returned to the United States and served as Director of Lean Manufacturing for Donnelly Corporation for five years. Art helped lead one of the most impressive lean transformations in North America. Donnelly won multiple awards while substantially improving net income, as well as operational metrics in safety, quality, productivity, delivery, and morale. Art’s work and this turnaround was featured in Forbes and many other publications.
In 1998, Art joined the international management consulting firm of McKinsey & Company and was one of the firm’s leading experts in lean manufacturing. He counseled numerous Fortune 500 clients on operational matters involving lean implementation and oversaw numerous successful quality, cost, and delivery improvement projects.
In 2003, Art launched his own company Art of Lean, Inc. and now divides his time serving a diverse base of clients such as Parker Hannifin, Delphi, Timken, Schlumberger, Gillette, Nexteer, Sandia National Laboratories, private equity groups, and many other organizations. A vast array of articles, guides, and documents pertaining to leadership and lean are available on his website: www.artoflean.com
Art serves as author and periodic advisor to the Lean Enterprise Institute and its global affiliates, delivering lectures to leading manufacturing executives around the world. In 2005, Art authored the Shingo Publication Award-winning workbook Creating Level Pull on implementing basic pull production. In 2008, he co-authored with his friend and colleague Professor Durward K. Sobek, the Shingo winning book Understanding A3 Thinking. In 2010, Art published Toyota's Kaizen Methods: Six Steps to Improvement with Isao Kato. In 2018, Art wrote his latest book Four Types of Problems, published by the Lean Enterprise Institute.
Shop and CI manager, 365 Café
Continuous Improvement Manager, Kinross – Round Mountain
Frank Wagener is the Continuous Improvement Manager at Kinross Round Mountain Gold mine in central Nevada. He has 10+ years of experience in improvement efforts at mining operations globally. Frank previously oversaw the Global Continuous Improvement program between Rio Tinto (RT) and Caterpillar (CAT) Global Mining involving 18 RT mines and 10 CAT dealerships.
In Frank’s current role, he oversees the Leadership Development Program that teaches lean thinking and continuous improvement methodology at the mine site. He oversees the CI team that provides support, training, and guidance for multiple business optimization projects within cross-functional teams. He champions the CI culture and helped introduce employee communication boards to capture improvement ideas from all levels of the workforce. Frank demonstrates the importance of developing top performers & teaching others to be open to a new way of thinking & surpassing previous milestones.
Frank has 25+ years experience in various aspects of mining including management, engineering, operations, and metallurgy. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from the University of Idaho and an MBA from New Mexico Highlands University.