AME Atlanta 2013: Lean Summit

Print Article
Share |
Text Size:
08/26/2013 (All day) - 08/29/2013 (All day)
Atlanta, Georgia

AME Office: 224-232-5980




The Southeast Region of the Association for Manufacturing Excellence (AME) will be hosting a    Lean Summit in Atlanta, Georgia from August 26-29, 2013

This Lean Summit not only mirrors the excellence of AME’s Annual International Conference but does so in a more intimate environment focusing on providing excellence in workshops, tours and keynote speakers.  The theme of the conference is “It’s all about leadership”.

Highlights of the summit include:

  • 9 Tours
  • 6 Workshops
  • 4 Keynote Speakers







One of the many advantages of being an AME member is to meet other members and network. If you haven’t yet experienced the value of networking, consider the following: 

  • At AME events, you meet other thought leaders - men and women who have faced and overcome the same problems as you now face.  You can pick their brains and learn what steps they took.  You can even ask them for hints on how you might resolve your immediate problem.
  • Perhaps you don’t have a problem.  You can exchange business cards with members whose story or experience you find compelling and, later contact them as a way of refreshing your recollection of the things you found compelling.
  • When you do have a problem, you can use the network of members you met at an event to offer you advice well after you leave the event.  All you have to do is to write or call and ask.  You’ll be amazed how forthcoming the AME community is.  Moreover, you’ll discover those in the network of your contacts are available to offer assistance, becoming a virtual spider’s web of thought and influence.
  • At AME events, you’ll be surrounded by like-minded people who have traveled the same path as you and who are just great people to know. 

Of course, attendance at this AME event makes you an automatic member.  Over the years of your membership, you’ll find yourself looking for faces in the crowd at each event and making it a point to call ahead to set aside time to have a meal or cup of coffee together.  In short, AME members start to enter your network, not only as business colleagues, but as friends.

Benefits for Attending AME Atlanta 2013
The benefits of an event are many, but probably the most rewarding ones are personal.  There are countless new insight "aha" and "that's funny" discoveries that set innovative thinking into motion.  And the new Lean thinking and insight you gain at the conference will likely result in saving your organization time and money.

There is nothing like the sharing that a fellow practitioner can provide.  Be it from a keynote speaker, a workshop or a tour, our event attendees always tell us they benefit most from learning about Lean from peers who are passionate about how they achieved success - warts and all.  They will tell you about the good, the bad and the ugly, and how they managed everything along the way. 

The Association for Manufacturing Excellence is a not-for-profit volunteer-based organization. The benefit this provides an attendee is the assurance that there is no hidden agenda.  Our sole purpose is to provide our attendees with a solid, jam-packed, practical and reliable source of Lean learning ... Period!!!

Building a social network of like-minded people is an important part of the Lean journey.  AME has been helping people to do this for decades.  AME events are noted for providing opportunities to build a personal network of Lean practitioners who love to share their common passion for excellence. Those who are new to the event will appreciate the immediate rewards of networking at the event, and over time come to appreciate the long-term rewards gained by being part of the largest and richest Lean learning networking family.

This Lean Summit provides the most powerful way to gain an unbelievable amount of knowledge in this short a time. You learn proven, practical solutions at AME events.  You can take plant tours and see the great strides made by companies who have applied Lean.  You can go to workshop that shows how innovative yet practical thinking can transform complex processing challenges.



Day One (8/26)

5:00PM – Reception – Event kick‐off

Day Two (8/27)

7:15AM – All day plant tours

Lunch (boxed or provided by host plant)

5:00PM – Keynote: Art Byrne "Lean Turnaround"

6:15PM – Dinner


Day Three (8/28)

7:15AM – Keynote: Joe Barto “AME Vet Friendly”

8:00AM – Workshops

9:30AM – Break

11:30AM – Lunch

12:00PM - Keynote: Larry Crull "Lean at FedEx Express, Air Operations"

12:45PM – Workshops (continued)

2:30PM – Break

5:15PM – Keynote: Luke Faulstick "Lean Deployment & AME"

6:00PM – Dinner & Raffle

At dinner time on Wednesday, August 28th, we will raffle off some items amongst the participants who are present.

Items to be raffled are:

  • Books authored by Robert Camp – either Robert personally or his publishers will provide.
  • $500 worth of books by Larry Fast’s publisher, Productivity Press.

Plus Special Exciting Announcement…
A fully paid registration for the 2013 AME International Conference in Toronto on Oct. 21-25, 2013 (a normal value of $2,699.00!) will be raffled off to one lucky attendee at AME’s Atlanta 2013 Lean Summit.

Day Four (8/29)

7:15AM – 1/2 Day Plant Tours

Lunch (boxed or provided by host plant)

Buses return to hotel no later than 12:30pm

Group Departs

Keynote Speakers

Four great speakers will address the AME Atlanta 2013 Lean Summit.

Art Byrne of Wiremold, General Electric and Danaher will speak directly to the topic “Lean Turnaround”. Art is presently an Operating Partner with J.W. Childs Associates.

Joe Barto, a retired Army Lt. Colonel with his own consulting business, Training Modernization Group, TMG, Inc. who will speak on the topic of “AME Vet Friendly”. 

Luke Faulstick, Co-Owner, President and CEO of PPI, the parent company Power Partners based in Athens, GA.  Luke has led various companies on the journey to excellence, most recently as COO of DJO Global whose operations won numerous awards including the Shingo Prize, Industry Week’s Best Plants and the AME Excellence Award.  Luke also is a former Chairman of AME from 2009-11.  Luke will speak on “Lean Deployment & AME”.

Larry Crull, is the Lean Operations manager in Air Operations for Memphis based FedEx Express and will speak on “Lean at FedEx Express, Air Operations”.  Larry will discuss how FedEx Express is creating a Lean culture in our unique service environment and how, in seven short years, those efforts have had a significant impact on the FedEx global operations. He will also discuss some of the challenges faced, lessons learned and accomplishments achieved along this journey.

Art Byrne
Art Byrne is an Operating Partner with J.W. Childs Associates, a private equity firm specializing in leveraged buyouts and recapitalizations of middle-market growth companies, where he leads the implementation of lean management at Childs' portfolio companies.

While serving as CEO or an equivalent position, Byrne implemented lean principles in more than 30 companies (including subsidiaries) and 14 countries during the past 30 years, giving him a matchless knowledge of how to turn around companies using a lean strategy. Byrne began his lean journey as general manager at the General Electric Company. Later, as group executive, he helped introduce lean to the Danaher Corporation. As CEO of The Wiremold Company he quadrupled the company size and increased its enterprise value by 2,500% in less than 10 years.

Byrne holds a bachelor's in economics from Boston College and a master's from Babson College. He also serves as a board member of the Shingo Prize. In November of 2012, IndustryWeek Magazine inducted Byrne into the Manufacturing Hall of Fame.

Luke Faulstick
Luke Faulstick is the co-owner, President and Chief Executive Officer of PPI, the parent company of Power Partners. After serving on the company's Board of Advisors since 2003, he came to Power Partners in early 2012 from DJO Global, where he had been Chief Operating Officer. Faulstick has had senior operating management roles at Tyco Healthcare, Graphic Controls, Mitsubishi Consumer Electronics and Eastman Kodak. Under his leadership, DJO Globals operations teams and manufacturing plants won numerous awards, including the Shingo Prize for operational excellence, Industry Week's Best Plants, and the Association of Manufacturing Excellence Operational Excellence Award.

He served as Chairman of the Association of Manufacturing Excellence from 2009 to 2011 and Director from 2006 to 2012. He serves as a Member of the Rady Children’s Hospital Foundation Board of Trustees. He is a recognized leader in implementing and managing lean, team-based operations. He is a Certified Board of Director through the UCLA Anderson School of Business. Mr. Faulstick earned an M.S. in Engineering from Rochester Institute of Technology and a B.S. in Engineering from Michigan State University.


Joe Barto
Joe Barto has created and led TMG, Inc. to consistent, near perfect business performance since it’s founding as Training Modernization Group in July 2002. A values-driven Program Management Services company, TMG’s high level of performance has been recognized by the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD) in 2002, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011 for Excellence in Practice with partners across America.

A retired U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel, Mr. Barto graduated and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant of Armor at the United States Military Academy in 1978 where he was an Army basketball player for Coach Mike Krzyzewski. During Operation Desert Shield and Storm he was the Chief of Operations for the 25,000 soldier 24th Infantry Division (Mechanized) and the Executive Office for Task Force 2-4 CAV which led the division into the Euphrates River Valley attacking the Iraqi Republican Guards. He was a Special Assistant to the Commanding General, U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command and the primary author of the June 1996 Joint Training Manual.

Joe holds a Master Degree in Public Administration (Organizational Theory and Leadership) from James Madison University, was a Charter member of the United States Advanced Distributed Learning Initiative, serves on the Southeast Region Board of Directors for AME and a Director of the New Horizons Regional Education Center Foundation. Joe is on the Steering Committee for the Hampton Roads Quality Management Council and the Chair, Workforce Development Committee of the Virginia Offshore Wind Coalition.

Larry Crull
Larry Crull is the Lean Operations manager in Air Operations for Memphis based FedEx Express. Mr. Crull and his team are responsible for leading the implementation of Lean practices and developing a culture of continuous improvement to support the safe, reliable and efficient operations of aircraft within FedEx’s fleet.

Mr. Crull has over 25 years’ experience in the aviation industry and since 2006 Larry and his team have been leading the implementation of continuous improvement in the aircraft maintenance, engineering, materiel and supply chain organizations within FedEx Express. His responsibilities include developing Lean facilitators, maintaining the Lean training academy, mentoring employees, delivering certification programs and providing Lean leadership for senior management and frontline workers in a division of more than 9800 employees worldwide to develop a sustainable Lean culture.


We will cover the span from basics, specific tools all the way to the most important aspect of lean – culture and people.  Experienced practitioners and educators will share their experiences and lead you through some exciting concepts.  Choose from among six sessions -- Leading the Lean Revolution/Hoshin Kanri Planning, Toyota Kata, Complex Multi-tiered Supply Chain FlowPeople-Powered LeanLean and Safe!, and Accounting in a Lean Environment.

Toyota Kata: “Improving and Coaching your way to Success”
This workshop adapts the “Buzz Electronics” manufacturing simulation, used extensively by NIST MEP practitioners, to effectively demonstrate the Improvement and Coaching Katas. This workshop has been adopted by several large companies as the standard way to roll out Toyota Kata within their organization.

This 8 hour, hands-on workshop, will involve:

  1. Presentation of the Toyota Kata Methodology utilizing Mike Rother’s “Toyota Kata Handbook” materials.
  2. Participation in the Buzz Electronics Improvement Kata simulation that brings Rother’s material “to life” as team members PDCA their way through the Kata process en route toward a Challenge and Target Conditions.
  3. Experiencing a Coaching Kata session that makes clear how the Learner, 1st Coach and 2nd Coach interact so effectively.
  4. Explanation and examples linking Vision, achievable Challenges and short term Target Conditions, in addition to the planning necessary with an Advance Group Overview

Toyota Kata addresses the question “How can we lead our companies so they will survive and thrive in the long term?” Since the future lies beyond what we can see, the solutions that we employ today may not continue to be effective. So it is not the solutions themselves – whether Lean techniques, today’s profitable product, or any other – that provide sustained competitive advantage, but rather the ability to understand conditions and create fitting, smart solutions. Toyota Kata is the routine to develop this capability in the organization, and is both a key factor in Toyota’s long-running success and a core responsibility of its leadership. Two specific behavior routines, or Kata: the Improvement Kata – a repeating routine of establishing challenging target conditions, working step-by-step through obstacles, and always learning form the problems we encounter; and the Coaching Kata – a pattern of teaching the improvement kata to employees at every level to ensure that it motivates their ways of thinking and acting. This workshop is for all who are searching for a better way to lead, manage and develop people, which produce continuous improvement, adaptation, survival, and superior results. Briefly put – Toyota Kata channels and utilizes the capabilities of all its members better than we do with our traditional management methods.

Speaker Biographies
Bill Kraus
is a Project Manager with Arkansas Manufacturing Solutions (a NIST MEP center) and is the immediate past president of the AME  SE Region. His primary focus includes training, facilitating and coaching in the areas of Lean Manufacturing, Training Within Industry and Toyota Kata. Prior to joining AMS, he spent 28 years with Monsanto, Engelhard and two privately held companies at Superintendent, Plant Manager and VP Operations levels in construction, maintenance and manufacturing.

Brandon Brown serves as Arkansas Manufacturing Solutions Business Development Specialist based at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. Brandon received a Master’s degree in Engineering from the University of Arkansas and brings 15 years manufacturing and engineering experience to the AMS staff. Prior to joining AMS, Brandon worked in Operations with Central States Manufacturing and has served as a visiting professor at the University of Arkansas teaching Operations Management courses. He has spent the past two years working with companies implementing Lean and Toyota Kata.

Hank Czarnecki serves as Lean Group Leader for Auburn University's Technical Assistance Program. Hank has more than 15 years of experience teaching Lean, facilitating kaizen improvement events and coaching companies on their Lean journey. He is currently AME’s Southeast Region VP of Programs.


Leading the Lean Revolution/Hoshin Kanri: Creating the Path for Success
Leading the Lean Revolution

Many companies start down the road towards operational excellence with the best of intentions. Unfortunately, about 4 out of 5 companies who start this journey find themselves in the side ditch, spinning their wheels, in less than 5 years’ time. Surveys over the last 30 years paint the same picture over and over again. Company leaders stand before their employees and exhort them to excel. Most then delegate “the program” and return to doing their jobs the same way they’ve been doing them for years. They don’t fully understand the journey they’ve launched nor are they truly committed to the long-term nature of it. In short, they don’t “walk the talk”.

Like most things in any organization, it’s all about leadership!—transformational leadership! Do you have a leadership crisis in your company? Do you or other leaders in your company lack understanding of your role as a leader of this revolution to achieve and sustain excellence? Whether you’re a CEO or a first line supervisor, this workshop will help you understand your role as well as how to see the warning signs of failure while there is still time to make corrections. In the afternoon you’ll get specific input on how you can create the right, disciplined plan, Hoshin Kanri, to help insure your organization’s success!

Hoshin Kanri: Creating the Path for Success

Over the last two decades, almost 85% of companies engaging in a Lean Transformation ended it.

Let’s agree: done properly, Lean should continue forever. So what happened? Didn’t they get the promised results? For sure, they did. Then what? The most common answers to that question are provided by the preceding workshop: “Leading the Lean Revolution.” In short, leaders fail to lead.

The preceding workshop will address what to do and not to do in creating a sustainable Lean transformation. One of the steps “to do” is to conduct a Hoshin Kanri (Policy Deployment), early in the transformation. What is that?

The Hoshin Kanri workshop will take leaders step-by-step through a discussion of how a Hoshin Kanri (Hoshin for short) is conducted, what the outcomes are and what you’ll do with those outcomes.

Hoshin is a top-down leadership approach leaving the real leaders of the organization in full command of their transformation. It will give them the tools to know what is happening at any given time in the transformation, as well as, allow them to make midcourse corrections to keep their transformation on task, long into the future.

Speaker Biographies
Robert B. Camp holds a Bachelor of Science degree in engineering from the United States Military Academy, West Point, New York, and a Master of Business Administration from Franklin Pierce University, Rindge, New Hampshire.

Robert spent almost 20 years of his career working for Mobil and Lockheed Martin. Throughout his career, he has performed roles that have drawn heavily on his increasing body of Lean knowledge and experience.


He has spent more than 10 years consulting to government and industry leaders on the topic of Lean. His consulting work has taken him throughout North America, Europe, and Asia.

Today, he is Vice President of Operations for a company making apparel for the healthcare industry. He is also serves as President of AME’s Southeast Region.

A respected consultant on the subject and leader, Camp has already penned two books. His first, "Go and See: A Journey About Getting To Lean," is a text that explains the tools and philosophies of Lean, and examines the relationships between them.

His second book, released in January, is a novel. Entitled "Sustainable Lean: The story of A Cultural Transformation," this book follows the life of a plant manager who hires a consultant to help him and his staff create a sustainable Lean transformation. In the process, they learn a lot more than they had planned, and become the best plant in their corporation.

Camp's third book is already underway and almost complete. Also a novel, it will look at a plant that is dragged, kicking and screaming, into a Lean transformation, only to be amazed by the success that follows.

Larry E. Fast is a 41 year veteran of manufacturing—more than half of that as the senior manufacturing leader for two different companies. His strategy and proven process to achieve and sustain manufacturing excellence is well documented having had numerous plants win awards for excellence. His book, The 12 Principles of Manufacturing Excellence: A Leader’s Guide to Achieving and Sustaining Excellence, was published in October, 2011 (Productivity Press). He is currently a judge for the Industry Week Best Plants competition and Vice President of Membership for the AME’s Southeast Region. He is Founder & President of Pathways to Manufacturing Excellence, LLC based in Gainesville, GA.

Just-in-time (JIT) Complex Multi-tiered Supply Chain Flow: Streamlining Materials Flow from Upper Tier Suppliers First-in, First-out, to Customer Points-of-use (POU)
The workshop’s objective is to describe, discuss, then experience how Toyota's lean manufacturing and "just-in-time" logistics principles and techniques are applied to orchestrate complex, low volume, high variety product multi-tiered supply chain flow. Progressive enterprise stages discussed are; production planning, order processing, supply chain planning, management, and flow, internal materials management, and multi-tier supply chain flow. These functions will be discussed within the context of achieving “continuous flow”, “indexing”, or “pulsing” of required components/parts/kits as they sequentially flow from upper tier suppliers to the Customer’s points-of-use (POU) at the customer defined demand tempo (i.e., takt).

Our approach will be to:

  • Discuss traditional manufacturing push replenishment supply chain, production control, and internal materials management.
  • Introduce and align lean manufacturing & just-in-time logistics principles and methods with key elements of the supply chain and production management and control.
  • Present and discuss how leveled demand operations and logistics management approaches can be used to orchestrate the launch of components/parts/kits at upper tier suppliers, then flow them first-in, first-out (FIFO) through the supply channel to the customer’s POUs.
  • Reinforce this learning by experiencing actual complex, low volume, high variety, multi-tier supply chain component flow through four tiers of a simulated supply channel.

From a complex supply chain perspective, we will discuss:

  • Customer value, the importance of shortening lead time, pulling customer orders throughout the entire enterprise, operational pacing, work and activity balancing (heijunka), importance of open communications, right-sizing and balancing throughput rates (TPR) at all supply chain stages, launching orders at upper tier suppliers, milk run pick-up tours, synchronizing feeder supply channels, and buffering to mitigate unavoidable delays.
  • Demonstrate how Toyota’s just-in-time principles can be successfully applied to complex, low volume, high variety product production and logistics systems to demonstrate their value in exactly satisfying customers' needs, shortening total system lead time, assuring quality, and reducing costs.

Specific Learning Objectives - Participants will take the following learning points with them to their organizations:

  • Should Optimize their entire Enterprise (i.e., Complete system) (e.g., Order processing, SC and roduction flow)
  • Should seek a holistic lean system design operating backward from their customer
  • Should “Right Size” Focused Factories (i.e., dedicated cells) internally and throughout their supply chains
  • Should seek to “index” customer required, time based, need sized “work Units” (e.g., Ship Sets. Kits, subassemblies, etc.) through all possible progressive SC tiers
  • Should maintain Customer sequence First-in, First-out (FIFO) flow & timing through progressive stages
  • Supply buffers should be inserted only where “time” delays are unavoidable (e.g., ship transport, batch processing, etc.)
  • Should openly communication end customer sequence and problems and their resolutions at all stages (i.e., Andon Problem ID & Correction Protocols)
  • Should “Freeze” end customer sequence to equal lead time from earliest order component launch point (i.e., pacemaker process)
  • Should integrate pull Internal flow with pull supply chain flow (Always operating at end customer’s need Tempo)

Speaker Biography
Jim Price gained his credentials in global logistics operations while serving twenty-one years as a logistics officer and defense industrial operations commander within the US Army. He gained his credentials in just-in-time manufacturing and logistics processes while serving as General Manager over Ryder Integrated Logistics’ Toyota North America team. There, his team was responsible for directing and executing the in-bound assembly parts logistics systems for the Toyota plants in Georgetown, Kentucky.


Jim has also served as Plant Manager for two highway tractor & trailer remanufacturing plants, a steel crankshaft forging company, and as Director of Operations over a hydraulic and pneumatic drive control machining and assembly manufacturer and a large scale material handling equipment manufacturer.

Additionally, Jim served for six years on the faculty of the University of Kentucky where he led creation of an effective on-campus Lean Boot Camp Program and an industry focused lean transformation support program that has helped hundreds of companies kick-start their lean transformation journeys. Jim is currently serving as the Executive Director of the Kentucky based Just-in-time Enterprise Institute. Jim is the President-elect of AME’s People Powered Lean: Building a Dream Team to Accelerate Your Lean Journey Heartbeat Leaders First.

People Powered Lean: Building a Dream Team to Accelerate Your Lean Journey Heartbeat Leaders First
The Lean journey to consistent near-perfect performance has two pillars; Continuous Process Improvement and Respect for People. An overwhelming amount of organizational effort is spent measuring, managing, and controlling the business process often described in cost, schedule, quality, safety. These are all lagging performance indicators. The true leading indicator of future business performance is engaged teams, who understand the rules of the game, and have organizational structures focused on those leaders who are the Heartbeat of the business. Organizations with highly engaged teams have earnings per share growth rates that are 2.6 times higher than less engaged organizations in the same industry. Recognized as a driver of productivity, competitive advantage, customer loyalty, and shareholder return, employee engagement and developing a Dream Team culture is no longer a plus, it is a requirement to compete in today’s economy. This workshop will focus on an organizational theory overview, and a proven methodology to define a Dream Team culture with what right and wrong look like. It will cover methodologies for analyzing return on investment for human capital management programs and assessing internal cost drivers associated with implementation. These methodologies will be shown though case studies and discussions on how to synchronize and integrate people improvement programs into and in direct support of every LEAN initiative.

Speaker Biography
Joe Barto
has created and led TMG, Inc. to consistent, near perfect business performance since its founding as Training Modernization Group in July 2002. A values-driven Program Management Services company, TMG’s high level of performance has been recognized by the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD) in 2002, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011 for Excellence in Practice with partners across America.

A retired U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel, Mr. Barto graduated and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant of Armor at the United States Military Academy in 1978 where he was an Army basketball player for Coach Mike Krzyzewski. During Operation Desert Shield and Storm he was the Chief of Operations for the 25,000 soldier 24th Infantry Division (Mechanized) and the Executive Office for Task Force 2-4 CAV which led the division into the Euphrates River Valley attacking the Iraqi Republican Guards. He was a Special Assistant to the Commanding General, U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command and the primary author of the June 1996 Joint Training Manual.

Joe holds a Master Degree in Public Administration (Organizational Theory and Leadership) from James Madison University, was a Charter member of the United States Advanced Distributed Learning Initiative, serves on the Southeast Region Board of Directors for AME and a Director of the New Horizons Regional Education Center Foundation. Joe is on the Steering Committee for the Hampton Roads Quality Management Council and the Chair, Workforce Development Committee of the Virginia Offshore Wind Coalition.Southeast Region.

Accounting in a Lean Environment Workshop
This seminar will help you understand on how you can make appropriate changes in your accounting systems to support an overall transformation to a lean enterprise. This course is appropriate for accounting managers, operations managers, lean/continuous improvement managers, plant managers, and will help both improve their production systems and supporting accounting systems.


  • Explain why new methods of accounting control & measurement are required as the company moves toward implementing lean principles.
  • Examine how to justify the lean investment.
  • Present lean methods for performance measurements.
  • Present lean costing methods that provide more accurate & simpler information than standard costs.
  • Discuss implementation issues related to the accounting function.

Speaker biography
Dr. Dewayne Searcy is the Director, Associate Professor and the CG Mills Fellow in the School of Accountancy at Auburn University. He received his PhD from the University of Tennessee. He taught at the University of Miami prior to his arrival at Auburn. He has published in several outlets including the Journal of Accounting Literature, International Journal of Accounting Information Systems, Journal of Information Systems, Issues in Accounting Education, The CPA Journal and Strategic Finance. His article, “Developing a Lean Accounting Score” received the 2010 Lybrand Broze Medal from the Institute of Management Accountants for outstanding article.

In additional to examining the accounting issues surrounding a lean implementation, Dr. Searcy also has experience in facilitating lean office implementations. Prior to entering academia, he worked in public accounting and private industry.

He is a Certified Management Accountant (CMA), Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Certified Internal Auditor (CIA), and Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE). He is an active member of the American Accounting Association and the Institute of Management Accountants.

Lean and Safe: Safety-Integrated Process Improvement
The practices of safety engineering and lean production have for many years been implemented separately in most industrial plants. The complexities of regulatory compliance have in large part dictated that separate specialists be dedicated to each area. Over time, in fact, these two essential functions have diverged to the point of being adversaries in many plants due mainly to their seemingly opposed agendas.

Yet, in recent years, some safety and process improvement specialists have recognized the opportunities intrinsic to breaking down the silo walls between lean and safety – decreasing costs, downtime and errors related to safety and health hazards. The goal of Georgia Tech’s “Lean and Safe” concept is to produce positive safety and health outcomes in lean-thinking organizations by integrating safety and health problem solving into the continuous improvement process.

This one day course provides an opportunity for participants to explore an integrated approach for improving both production processes and safety outcomes collaboratively. Participants with either process improvement or safety and health backgrounds will benefit from this integrated, simulation-based learning experience. Those attending will see how addressing process and safety concurrently promotes greater benefits to the organization.

Topics covered will include:

  • Applying safety metrics to Value Stream Mapping (VSM) for process improvements
  • Identifying and assessing safety waste in processes
  • Application of the ‘Lean and Safe’ toolkit
  • Implementing safety-integrated process improvements

Speaker Biographies
Damon Nix
serves as a Safety Specialist with the Georgia Tech Safety and Health Consultation Program, providing safety and health consultation services to small businesses throughout Georgia. He is also an instructor with Georgia Tech’s OSHA Training Institute. Mr. Nix’s current focus areas are in Safety Management Systems and Safety-Integrated Process Improvement, which includes the application of CPI concepts such as Value Stream Mapping and Waste Identification to assist in the mitigation of hazards from processes. His education includes a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology (2001) and a Master of Divinity from Mercer University (2010). Mr. Nix resides in Flowery Branch, GA with his wife, Tracy, and two young sons, Lane and Owen.

Tom Sammon, based in Carrollton, GA, is a project manager for Georgia Tech’s Enterprise Innovation Institute. He focuses on implementing Lean manufacturing practices and helping companies develop capital equipment applications. He has 15 years of experience in the industrial automation and machine building fields. He worked as a project manager implementing equipment systems into Lean environments throughout North America. Previously Sammon’s work focused on discrete manufacturing, ranging from metalworking and welding with the Panasonic Robotics Group, to high-speed packaging for companies like Procter & Gamble and Colgate-Palmolive. He is an active member of the faculty group Robotics & Intelligent Machines at Georgia Tech (RIM@GT) and is on the Board of Advisors at West Georgia Technical College’s Industrial Electronics degree program. Sammon holds an M.S. in management of technology from Georgia Tech and a B.S. in industrial engineering from Southern Polytechnic State University.

Paul Todd is a project engineer with Georgia Tech’s Enterprise Innovation Institute. He teaches and assists companies within various industries, the application of Lean principles, process improvement tools, and change management through workshops, kaizen events, and shop-floor coaching. Prior to joining Georgia Tech, Todd spent 13 years in the textile and apparel industry, holding a variety of manufacturing, industrial engineering, and materials management positions at various business units of Russell Corporation in the US and Europe. Todd holds a B.S. degree in Industrial Management from the Georgia Institute of Technology with a certificate in Economics. He is a certified Training Within Industry instructor and a member of the Board of Examiners for the Shingo Prize for Operational Excellence.



We have nine tours scheduled.

Tuesday, August 27th tours
Tours will be AM/PM with the same bus going to both sites:

Track A
Power Partners, Inc. & Acuity Brands

Track B
Sunny Delight Beverages Company & Printpak, Inc.

Track C
KIA Motors Manufacturing Georgia & Milliken

Thursday, August 29th, half day tours:
Philips Respironics
Sunny Delight

Acuity Brands, Inc. is a North American market leader and one of the world's leading providers of lighting solutions for both indoor and outdoor applications. With fiscal year 2012 net sales of over $1.9 billion, Acuity Brands employs approximately 6,000 associates and is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, with operations throughout North America, and in Europe and Asia.

During this tour you will learn how "Lean Thinking" is evident throughout the company, even in the approach to the customer. Leadership practices sustain both the culture and operational progress with lean thinking. A culture of continuous improvement is contagious and sustainable if deployed correctly and Acuity Brands Lighting will provide examples of how you can eliminate waste throughout your value stream using Standard Work and Playbooks. The Acuity Business System implements and sustains lean in manufacturing, distribution Center and the office. In fact, there is as much focus on lean office as in manufacturing.

Effective implementation of lean manufacturing requires engagement, understanding, ownership, and creative thinking by everyone in that operation. A few of the lean tools that have helped Acuity with Man’s engagement, understanding, ownership and creative thinking are Standard Work, Gemba Walks, Value Stream Mapping, 5S, Visual Management, and Kanban.

The top lean principle at Acuity Brands Lighting is: "See value in the eyes or our customers". Acuity is striving to get local to the customer and develop opportunities to meet their vision. Standard work and visual management in sales and other office areas has allowed them to focus on sustainable change and develop lighting solutions for their customers.

Officially Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia (KMMG), Kia's plant in West Point, Georgia, is capable of producing 300,000 cars annually for the North American and global markets. At an initial cost of $1 billion the facility comprises 2.2 million-square-feet on more than 2,200 acres of land near Interstate 85. The facility currently manufactures the second generation Sorento and the 2011-present Kia Optima.

In addition to four main areas (stamping, welding, paint and assembly), the facility also includes a transmission shop, module shop and a two-mile test track. The assembly area features more than a half mile of height-adjustable conveyors and wood flooring.

Production of the second generation Kia Sorento began on Nov. 16, 2009. A grand opening ceremony was held at the plant on Feb. 26, 2010, and attended by guests from across the world, including Mr. M.K. Chung, chairman of the Hyundai Motor Group, and Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue.

KMMG has now hired more than 3,000 team members at its West Point location. When factoring in positions created at suppliers throughout the region, more than 10,000 jobs have been created in association with KMMG.

In April of 2011, KMMG began a $100 million expansion project that would increase the plant’s capacity from 300,000 to more than 360,000 vehicles per year, starting in 2012.

On Sept. 2, 2011, KMMG officially began mass production of its second Kia product, the 2012 Optima and now has three full shifts operating at the plant 24 hours a day/five days per week.

Though Milliken & Company is a 145-year-old firm, during the last 20 years it has become an established premier American company that has maintained highly viable operations despite many great odds. The company’s success over such an incredible span of time can be related back to three of the company’s core strategies, which include diversifying its product mix, maintaining a strict adherence to its operational excellence system, and approaching all obstacles not as problems but as opportunities to elevate the company’s innovative spirit. Milliken serves a variety of industries to include automotive fabrics, interior furnishings, apparel fabrics, industrial products and specialty chemicals.

With 39 manufacturing facilities located in the U.S., U.K., Belgium, France and China, and with other sales and service operations throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia, Milliken's nearly 7,000 associates work to create entirely new customer experiences, build for the future and create products that do good for the world.

Milliken serves a variety of industries to include automotive fabrics, interior furnishings, apparel fabrics, industrial products and specialty chemicals.

During the tour you will witness how the Live Oak Milliken Plant in LaGrange Georgia uses a systems of continuous improvement that is exemplary of the Milliken world class performance.

It’s this level of excellence over the lifetime of the company that inspired the creation of Milliken Performance Solutions™. When it became clear that Milliken had developed expertise in performance, quality and safety solutions that was second to none, the company made the decision to form a strategic consulting group that could share these best practices with other companies to help enhance safety, quality and productivity.

Respironics, Inc. is a leading developer, manufacturer and marketer of medical devices used for the treatment of patients suffering from respiratory disorders. The Company's products are designed to reduce costs while improving the effectiveness of patient care and are used primarily in the home and in hospitals along with alternative care facilities and in emergency medical settings.

Philips Respironics in Kennesaw designs and manufactures medical devices for the Home Respiratory Care market. The 130,000 sq. ft. facility is comprised of 296 full-time associates and a temporary work force of 115 to support growth. This FDA-registered facility houses Manufacturing, Distribution, New Product Development, Research and Development, Quality Assurance, Global Sourcing, and a Service Center. Manufacturing includes high-volume/mixed model as well as low-volume/mixed model production lines, ranging from electromechanical assembly to machining and metal fabrication.

Manufacturing processes are set up using one-piece flow and standard work. Automated test systems are designed and developed to support flexible manufacturing processes and product mix. Continuous Improvement tools that are used include Kaizen Blitzes, Quick and Easy Kaizens, 5S Events, Value Stream Mapping, Visual Management, Internal and External Kanban Replenishment, and Sustainability initiatives.

Driving continuous improvements in manufacturing has allowed the Kennesaw facility to sustain growth in excess of 280% over the last five years.

Power Partners Inc. manufactures overhead distribution transformers and adsorption chillers. The facility is located in beautiful Athens, GA, and was built by Westinghouse in 1958, sold to ABB in 1990, and is currently privately held.  In May 2013, Power Partners celebrates 55 years in operation. It is a union facility and successfully maintains a partnership type of relationship with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) and Athens Westinghouse Employees Association (AWEA.)

The PPI Way tour will show how this high volume job shop has implemented lean principles. The PPI Way Line of Site management will be demonstrated showing linkage from the strategic plan through the organization’s framework and functional KRA management to five minute start up meetings and pace boards. Cellular manufacturing is being created out of traditional assembly lines to reduce lead time and material flow designed to reduce inventories 75% and lead time by 50%. The tour will include many continuous improvement tools like value stream mapping, kaizen blitzes, poka yoke, kata, gemba walks and gemba cam, and most importantly the development of a team work culture that embraces change, owns the processes, and creates total customer satisfaction.

Join Power Partners in celebrating success along the lean journey.

Sunny Delight Beverages Co. is a leading producer of juice-based drinks in North America, headquartered in Cincinnati Ohio. It currently produces and markets 7 brands: SunnyD, Elations glucosamine and chondroitin dietary supplement, Fruit2O flavored waters, Bossa Nova superfruit beverages, Veryfine juices, Fruit Simple fruit smoothies and Crystal Light bottled beverages.

SunnyD was launched in Florida by Doric Foods in 1963. SunnyD was purchased from Proctor and Gamble and ultimately became Sunny Delight Beverages Co. in August, 2004.

During this tour you will witness how Lean Best Practices such as Daily Management, 5S, Standard Work and Value Stream Mapping are used in High Performance Work Environment. In addition to the millions in capital investment, SunnyD has invested in implementing lean and sustaining continuous improvement through employee engagement, kaizen and lean education.

TOTO is the world’s largest plumbing products manufacturer. They offer a complete line of commercial and decorative plumbing fixtures and fittings, faucets, accessories, shower and flush valves, as well as lavatories, toilets, Air Baths and urinals. More than 1,500 TOTO engineers and their colleagues are committed to achieving the seamless integration of performance, conservation, technology, and innovation.

See the site that renowned lean consultant and author Norman Bodek (founder of Productivity Press) said had some of the best visual management systems he has witnessed.

Their state-of-the-art plant in Morrow, Georgia is a testament to conservation and quality control. For example, they recycle the water they use as well as thoroughly treating it before returning it to the county. From their molding process to the final changes, their products are constructed and fine-tuned with computer precision and relentless attention to detail. Their pursuit of excellence pushes them beyond industry standards and drives them to maintain our reputation as one of the most decorated plumbing manufacturers in the world.

Founded in 1956 and headquartered in Atlanta, Printpack is a privately held manufacturer of flexible and specialty rigid packaging.  Employing 4,220 associates worldwide, the company operates 28 manufacturing facilities in the United States, Mexico, the United Kingdom, Poland and China.

Printpack’s success can be attributed to one overall ingredient – the People.  Although its competition can use the same equipment and materials, the difference lies in Printpack’s associates. There is no question that this is a major factor in what has made Printpack grow and flourish for more than 50 years. 

Attendees at AME Atlanta 2013 Lean Summit have the unique opportunity to be guests of Printpack, Inc. where they will participate in a guided plant tour of the company’s Villa Rica, Georgia facility, one of the most technologically advanced flexible packaging converting operations in North America.

At the Printpack facility, tour participants will see examples of just in time manufacturing, flexibility, and customization to meet customer requirements.  This site is driven by a world class sales and operation process so well connected to the customer that it anticipates the customer’s demand forecast creating a virtual pull system.  The Villa Rica plant has achieved a superior rating from the AIB, is ISO 9001 certified, and was the first of Printpack’s manufacturing facilities to be designated as an OSHA VPP Star Site. 


The Clorox Company is a leading manufacturer and marketer of consumer and professional products with approximately 8,400 employees and fiscal year 2012 revenues of $5.5 billion. Clorox markets some of the most trusted and recognized brand names, including its namesake bleach and cleaning products, Clorox Healthcare™, HealthLink®, Aplicare® and Dispatch® products, Green Works® naturally derived home care products, Pine-Sol® cleaners, Poett® home care products, Fresh Step® cat litter, Glad® bags, wraps and containers, Kingsford® charcoal, Hidden Valley® and KC Masterpiece® dressings and sauces, Brita® water-filtration products, and Burt's Bees® and gud® natural personal care products. Nearly 90 percent of the company's brands hold the No. 1 or No. 2 market share positions in their categories. The company's products are manufactured in more than two dozen countries and marketed in more than 100 countries.

During the tour of the Forest Park Manufacturing Site, you will witness how leadership -- focusing on people engagement and lean -- are yielding results. Themes for this tour will focus on the following:

  • Focusing on the People
  • Educate, Engage and Empowerment
  • Culture Change
  • Servant Leadership
  • Implementation of Team Based Systems
  • Positive Reinforcement – Rewards and Recognition
  • Lean Tools from Clorox World Class Manufacturing System


We’re pleased to have such strong support for AME and manufacturing in the greater Atlanta area by great companies who are willing to share their learning by hosting Gemba walks and providing instructors and other volunteers.These sponsors from around the Southeast Region of AME are also instrumental to our ability to host a world class event such as this. 

AME would like to thank the following for their sponsorship:

Platinum Level


Gold Level


Silver Level

If you are interested in sponsoring the AME Atlanta 2013 Lean Summit, please contact:
Glenn Marshal at PH: 757.585.1196 or email Glenn at

Sponsorhip Levels
$5,000 cash donation; will receive 3 complimentary registrations to the event, recognition on signage and printed materials and a small table for materials and discussion with attendees.

$2,500 cash donation; will receive 2 complimentary registrations, recognition on signage and printed materials and a small table.

$1,000 cash donation; 1 complimentary registration, on signage and printed materials and a small table.

Registration and Logistics


Atlanta Airport Marriott (Download hotel information and reservation link)

Registration Fees
AME Member: $845.00
Non-Member: $ 995.00

* 5 or more attendees from the same company receive $100 discount off each registration

Two Special Deals for the October 21-25, 2013 AME Toronto Conference
1. Purchase 4 registrations for the Atlanta Lean Summit and you will receive 1 Toronto Conference registration for only $500.00
2. Purchase 1 Toronto Conference registration (at the current rate) and recieve 1 Atlanta Lean Summit registration for $150.00

In order to redeem these specials, please contact the AME office at: 224.232.5980 or email at: 

Special Note:
At dinner time on Wednesday, August 28th, we will raffle off some items amongst the participants who are present.
Items to be raffled are:

  • Books authored by Robert Camp – either Robert personally or his publishers will provide.
  • $500 worth of books by Larry Fast’s publisher, Productivity Press.

Plus Special Exciting Announcement…
A fully paid registration for the 2013 AME International Conference in Toronto on Oct. 21-25, 2013 (a normal value of $2,699.00!) will be raffled off to one lucky attendee at AME’s Atlanta 2013 Lean Summit.

You can become an AME member during the registration process for $150 per year and obtain the discounted AME member rate for this event. Your membership will also entitle you to a registration discount for all future AME conferences, seminars, workshops and webinars for one year. Additionally, you will receive a subscription to the award winning Target magazine and much more.

Payment or purchase order must be received by the AME office five days prior to the event start date. If no payment or PO number is received, you will be asked to pay with a credit card or check at the event before entry.

Cancellation Policy: Enrollment fee less a $100 non-refundable registration charge will be refunded up to one week before the event. Substitutions may be made up to three days prior to the start of the workshop.

Notes: This event may be cancelled by AME for any reason. AME is not responsible for incidental costs incurred by registrants. By registering for this meeting, I hereby acknowledge and agree that AME or its agents may take photographs of me during events and may use those photographs for AME’s purposes, including but not limited to news and promotional purposes, without further compensation to me.


Target is the official publication of the Association for Manufacturing Excellence (AME). Its purpose is to share manufacturing and organizational best practices in all types of manufacturing operations from job shops to high-volume repetitive factories. Subscribe to Target Online, AME’s free monthly digital magazine.

Click here to subscribe

Introducing The New Corporate Membership Program - Click here to learn more

As a corporate member all of a company’s employees may attend AME events, including conferences and regional events, at AME member prices. Five key contacts will become full AME members and receive a wealth of benefits to improve their company’s competitiveness and advance their careers. Click on the banner above to learn more.