Vern Campbell, Operational Excellence Expert

Vern Campbell is a professional engineer with extensive experience in both the manufacturing and service sectors.  Vern spent ten years at Manitoba Hydro, first in financial planning and then leading their Strategic Planning and Quality Improvement Initiative. In 2000, he moved to Northern Blower, a 200 employee custom fan manufacturer serving the North American industrial market, initially as a consultant and then as General Manager.  At Northern Blower,  he put his operational excellence principles into practice with dramatic improvement results.  In his consulting practice, Vern has consulted in a variety of sectors including healthcare, manufacturing, human resources/payroll, electric utilities, packaging, and education, and regulatory bodies to address strategy planning and deployment, executive training and coaching, leadership and supervisor development and coaching, strategic project selection and execution, operational improvement through Lean Six Sigma training and coaching, basic data analysis, interpretation and problem solving. Vern is passionate about developing people, improving organizations and preparing students for rewarding careers in industry.

Robert Clark, Robert Clarke Associates

Robert Clarke, Robert Clarke Associates, Boulder, Colorado
-Princeton University – Engineering (1965) (briefly hockey captain)
-Stanford MBA (1972)
-Peace Corps – Malaysia – Science & Math Teacher
-Co-Founder: Southwall Technologies (Heat Mirror), 1976, Palo Alto
-Founder: Alpen (architectural glass & windows) 1981 ThinkAlpen.com
-Present: Energy Consultant (with focus and very high performance architectural glass and windows) - RobertClarkeAssociates.com  

Brett Hiscock, LEAN Facilitator

Brett Hiscock, CIM, P.Mgr, C.Mgris a LEAN Facilitator and the Training Within Industry (TWI) Instructor for CME Manitoba. In a career spanning more than two decades, Brett has worked extensively in manufacturing operations management. He has held Operations and Production Manager positions for local and international organizations, including Palliser Furniture, a company with annual domestic and international sales of $500 million. Since joining CME in 2011, Brett has worked with more than 50 consortia companies to implement LEAN principles. He has helped over 25 companies implement TWI. Brett holds his Yellowbelt, Greenbelt, Blackbelt certifications, and Master Blackbelt certifications in LEAN Manufacturing. He is certified by the U.S.-based TWI Institute to deliver Job Instruction and Job Relations program modules.

Glen Hodgson, International Economist, Opening Keynote

Glen Hodgson has 36 years of experience in global and Canadian macro-economics, international trade analysis and finance, fiscal and tax policy, and other “big picture” topics.

Glen’s career has spanned the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in Washington D.C., the federal Department of Finance, Export Development Canada (EDC), and the Conference Board of Canada, where he was Senior Vice-President and Chief Economist for twelve years. He recently joined International Financial Consulting Ltd. as a Senior Associate, and the C.D. Howe Institute as a Senior Fellow. He has travelled the world and Canada as an economic analyst and public speaker, financial negotiator, and advisor to governments, businesses and international organizations.

Topics of expertise and interest include: global, U.S., and Canadian economic performance; globalization, trade and disruption; international trade analysis and risk management; managing catastrophic risk; the emerging low-carbon economy; fiscal and tax policy; and the business economics of sports.

Glen has co-authored two books and over 375 reports, briefings and articles, with a regular commentary in the Globe and Mail. He has delivered many presentations to audiences of all types and sizes, and done numerous media interviews via print, TV, radio and social media.    

Todd LeRoy, Loewen

Todd LeRoy has had a diverse career at Loewen which has included many roles with increased responsibility since he started at Loewen in 1982. Starting on the Shipping dock, Todd moved into positions that included safety, transportation and leadership. In 1997 Todd moved into a Production Manager role and just over a year later was promoted to Plant Manager at a time when Loewen had an average of 1300 employees. Since then Todd has served as a Business Unit Leader to lead the Awning/Casement team through a Lean transition before taking on the role as Director, Production Support Services in April 2009. Todd’s diversification in knowledge, leadership and expertise has been invaluable during a temporary on-site assignment in 2009 as the Director, Operations for Loewen Lift Slide in Oceanside, California where he provided leadership on Lean principles, process improvement and operations practices. Since that time Todd has added the leadership of the Customer Market Services and Information Technology areas to his portfolio in the role of Director, Business Operations. In July of 2013 he transitioned to Director, Manufacturing and in early 2015 was promoted to VP, Manufacturing.

Aaron Mundt, AmesburyTruth

Aaron Mundt has been with AmesburyTruth for 25 years and is currently a Business Unit Manager for casement and awning hardware as well as extrusions.  He is actively involved in strategic planning, budgeting, product design, product life cycle management, and P&L decisions for the business.  He is also AAMA Fenestration Master certified.

Stephan Nies, SIEGENIA

Stephan Nies has more than 30 years experience in various roles in the metal-industry as:
-Export Sales Manager at BGH Edelstahl in Germany (Special Stainless Steel long products)
-Sales Director at KI in Germany (Seamless drawn precision pipe)
-Director of Sales at Nobelclad in Germany (Explosion welded bi-metal plates)
Stephan is now the Area Sales Manager at SIEGENIA in Germany, a more than 100 year old family business and a world leader in windoor and door hardware with more than 2500 employees. Stephan is responsible for the sales in North America (including Canada) The UK, Ireland, Scandinavia, Australia and New Zealand.

Cheryl Partridge, Opportunities for Employment

Cheryl Partridge has been a specialist in working with diverse populations for over 15 years. In her work with Opportunities for Employment (OFE), Cheryl is proud to have played key roles in two award-winning projects, including the Minister’s Workforce Development Award, for revolutionizing recruitment, training, and onboarding of new employees in the manufacturing sector. In her time with OFE, Cheryl has developed strong and lasting relationships with dozens of employers to meet their ever-changing (or growing) staffing needs, successfully matching over 200 job seekers with long-term, meaningful employment in this industry. Her innovative and collaborative approach has resulted in job retention rates that are significantly higher than the industry standard, long lasting partnerships with leading manufacturing companies, and happy, productive employees.

Warren Peters, LEAN Consultant

Over the course of a 20-year career in the manufacturing sector, Warren Peters has steadily assumed more senior roles, including operational responsibility for multiple plants across Canada. His experience from the shop floor to the boardroom provide him with a valuable perspective from which to provide guidance, coaching, facilitation and training services. Warren is LEAN Blackbelt Certified and Kata trained through the University of Michigan. Along with a degree from the University of Manitoba, he maintains a number of other certifications, including 4 Disciplines of Execution (Franklin Covey), Safety Management, Leadership for Excellence, Safety Auditor Training and WHIMS (COR).

Stephen Selkowitz, Building Scientist

Stephen Selkowitz is a Senior Advisor for Building Science, and the Group Leader of the Windows and Envelope Materials Group in the Building Technology and Urban Systems Division. As an internationally recognized expert on window technologies, façade systems, and daylighting, he collaborates with R&D teams worldwide. He is a frequently invited speaker to industrial and professional groups on many aspects of building technologies and commercial building energy efficiency, and is the author/co-author of over 170 publications, 3 books and holds 2 patents. He is the Principal Investigator for the new LBNL program to design and build FLEXLAB®, the Facility for Low Energy Experiments in Buildings. He is a past member of the Board of Directors of the National Fenestration Rating Council and is currently on the advisory board of a number of efficiency initiatives such as the Green Lights Daylighting Program in New York City, and the Zero Emissions Building program in Norway. Before joining LBNL he was a principal in a consulting engineering firm and taught courses in Environmental Controls and Alternative Energy Systems. Selkowitz holds a BA in Physics from Harvard College and an MFA in Environmental Design from California Institute of the Arts.

Billy Ray Taylor, Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co., Luncheon Keynote

Billy Ray Taylor is Director of Commercial and Off Highway Manufacturing for The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company. Taylor has more than 25 years of operations management experience, in his role as Director, he is responsible for driving operational excellence, delivering best in class product service and product quality enabling high-value business growth.

He has a track record of improving production efficiency and building employee engagement at all levels of an organization. Billy has been called upon by Business Excellence Magazine, Association of Manufacturing Excellence, Nike, The United States Army, and the International Manufacturing Technology Show to deliver his powerful leadership message and show practical examples on how to drive and sustain effective results through embracing your culture and enabling employee ownership. He earned an MBA from Baker University, in Baldwin, Kansas, and a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from Prairie View A&M University, in Prairie View, Texas.

Taylor is active in the community and currently serves on the Saint Vincent-Saint Mary High School Executive Board in Akron, Ohio, as well as chairman of the board of the Goodyear Good Governance Fund and executive sponsor for the Goodyear Black Network an Employee Resource Group.  He is a member of the Shingo Institutes executive advisory board at the Jon M. Huntsman School of Business at Utah State University. Billy  is a trusted member of Plant Engineering Publications Editorial Advisory Board.

Notable Achievements and Recognition:
  • State of Oklahoma Governor’s Office and the Oklahoma Southeast Legislative Delegation – citation of commendation for leadership and community service.
  • 2010 Shingo Prize for Operational Excellence – “Silver Medallion” – for leading the Goodyear plant in Lawton, Oklahoma, to excellence in lean manufacturing; the second highest honor behind the Shingo Prize and the world’s only lean manufacturing award program.
  • Freedom Fortress Coin – rarely bestowed upon civilians and presented in recognition of strong leadership during economic downturn by Lieutenant General David Valcourt, deputy commanding three-star general and chief of staff of the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command.

Al Dueck, Duxton Windows & Doors, Conference Chair

Al Dueck, Owner and Founder of DUXTON Windows & Doors, has dedicated more than 25 years of his professional life to the window manufacturing industry. Graduating from the University of Manitoba with an MBA, Al has always been particularly passionate about product design and building envelopes. A large portion of his industry background involved leading edge glazing – technological advances offering greater energy efficiency, comfort, and durable warm edge configurations. Al is the founding president of Fenestration Manitoba and is also active within Fenestration Canada.

Nancy Zubriski, Fenestration Manitoba, Conference Organizer

Zubriski & Associates provides Association Management services for not-for-profit member-based associations. This service includes membership management, event management, financial management and board management. Nancy Zubriski has been working with Fenestration Manitoba as Association Manager/Executive Director since 2015.