Home : Lean Consulting : Associates & Bios
Associates and Bios
Pascal Dennis is a professional engineer, author and mentor to executives. Pascal is the President of Lean Pathways, and co-founder of Digital Pathways, a firm focused on harnessing technology to enable Digital Transformation.
Since 2000 Pascal and his team have supported leading international firms in a broad range of industries including automotive, aerospace, consumer goods, energy, health care and financial services.
Pascal has authored seven books and is a four-time winner of the Shingo Prize for Excellence. He is a dedicated musician and songwriter. He has practiced Aikido for many years. Pascal lives in Toronto with his wife, Pamela.
Alistair Norval is a professional engineer who developed his skills at Eastman Kodak Company, where he helped design and implement the Kodak Operating System, based on the principles of the Toyota Production System. In this capacity, he received in-depth personal training with leading international senseis. Following that, Alistair helped guide Celestica International, a provider of Electronic Manufacturing Services, with their lean journey at multiple site value streams in Asia. More recently, Alistair has been guiding clients on their lean transformation while achieving significant business results. His clients include the Medical, Consumer, and Professional Services business sectors.
Alistair has been a manager of manufacturing, product and process engineering, and has helped launch several plants. His experience covers both continuous chemical processes as well as discrete manufacturing. He has applied lean methods in new product development and the supply chain. His passion is to apply lean thinking across the enterprise so as to achieve consistently superior results.
Leslie Barker has spent the past ten years learning & applying lean and Six-sigma in major international firms. Her experience spans electronics, manufacturing and the process industries. She has worked not only in operations but also in finance, marketing, design, human resources and supply chain.
Leslie is a practitioner of Toyota Production System principles, which she learned studying with lean masters in North America and Japan. She has found this is the only way to sustain breakthrough results in quality, leadtime and profit – is to engage the creativity of all team members.
Rene Mulder has led business transformations at major manufacturing and Healthcare organizations both in roles of Management and as an external coach and mentor. Rene developed his skills in more than three decades at Toyota Motor Manufacturing where he served as Senior Manager of Engineering, Production and Maintenance. Rene's many achievements include coveted Toyota certification in a) Practical Problem Solving 'OJD', and b) Jikotei-Kanketsu or 'advanced process improvement'. While supporting Toyota Canada's Lexus RX 350 launch, he received an award for best process control system in North America.
The core of Rene's strength is the ability to lead and coordinate problem solving in complex organizations with multiple stakeholders. This has led to numerous breakthroughs including a) eliminating crane accidents in North American Toyota plants, and b) world class infection control and hand hygiene compliance in a major hospital system. Rene is passionate about applying the methods and principles of the Toyota Production System to achieve breakthroughs in safety and quality, while engaging and developing the skills of team members.
Diploma, Canadian Institute of Management
Ron Taylor has spent the past 18 years learning and applying a “hands on” “learn-by-do” approach from frontline to CEO transformations to highly customized versions of the Toyota Production System. Transformations conducted with companies from 500 to 10,000 employees with facilities in U.S., Canada and Europe in healthcare, higher education, automotive and component manufacturers, contact centers, distribution, consumer paper and film manufacturing/distribution, cash logistics, truck and body manufacturer, commercial, marine and industrial manufacturing industries with the purpose of harnessing benefits from freeing up hidden capacity, changing cost structure and enhancing customer value. Ron is especially strong at flow and system kaizen and at the cultural side of Lean transformation.
The first fourteen years of Ron's career entailed steady progress through hourly, trades, maintenance supervisor, engineering manager, production manager, launch leader and facility manager. In twelve of those fourteen years he implemented Lean manufacturing transformation at Johnson Controls plant that received both recognition as a high performing Toyota Supplier and the Shingo Award.
Every day a little up...
Deb Liefer learned the Lean Business System in a range of leadership positions at Magna Donnelly, an automotive industry Lean leader. Over the past fifteen years she has supported Lean implementation in diversified industries in United States, Mexico, Canada, Spain, Ireland and England. She has been a Six Sigma, Paint & Molding, and Plant manager.
Deb's specialty is developing senior Lean leaders, as well as, practical 'learn by do' training and implementation. To support the former, Deb has served as interim Operations Director and Site Manager for a major automotive client while mentoring a permanent replacement.
Deb has led more than 100 successful major kaizens which have generated sustained business results. She continues to see new challenges by applying Lean thinking in new industries around the world.
Every day a little up...
Lani Watson is a veteran sensei who developed his Lean skills on the Toyota shop floor in North American and Japan. Lani began his career as a front line supervisor in Toyota's leading international facility -- Toyota Motor Manufacturing Canada (TMMC). He grew into senior leadership roles including Group Manager of Kaizen Support at both TMMC and Toyota Kentucky.
Lani has led Lean transformations at major international companies including Terex, General Motors, Opel, and ABC Plastics -- both as a senior executive and as consultant. He has been a Manager of assembly operations, logistics, quality assurance, Production Control and kaizen promotion. Lani is especially strong at flow and system kaizen and at the cultural side of Lean transformation.
Responsive, Proactive, Results
Harold is a results-oriented financial executive with a ‘roll up your sleeves’ attitude and broad experience in a range of industries including the private and ‘not-for-profit’ sectors. A creative thinker and innovator, Harold has led business process improvements in areas as diverse as HR, IT and Finance.
Harold’s integrity, people skills, and management know-how, make him a ‘go-to’ person who gets things done. He is an inspirational problem solver committed to engaging team members in tailored solutions for the specific needs of the particular business organization.
Harold’s overall goal is to create value and drive breakthrough improvement in advanced organizations by engaging the talent, creativity, and tenacity of all team members.
With over twenty years of experience as a healthcare executive, Lisa has a broad understanding of hospital-based, home-based and ambulatory care operations. Stemming from her passion for high quality reliable care and patient safety, Lisa led a lean system implementation in an independent community hospital. She then joined MultiCare Health System at the beginning of their lean implementation as the operational leader for the system's 437 bed tertiary hospital. By creating a vision of what was possible and providing the tools and support leaders needed, results were realized steadily and gradually and accelerated quickly as competencies developed. Lisa understands first-hand what it takes as a COO to learn "working at the right level" to inspire and coach teams to realize their full potential through a conscious mindset shift and develop a culture focused on improvement. She also developed a strong track record of bringing teams and physicians together across the organization to leverage the full potential of the hospital system.
Lisa has held certification by the American Society for Quality as a Manager of Quality/Organizational Excellence since 2008. She holds a BSN degree and a MN in Community Healthcare Systems, both from the University of Washington.
Tom Lockwood is a seasoned Lean sensei with two decades’ experience implementing Lean management in large multinationals. Tom has been a manager of maintenance, operations, and a Lean Program Manager. His competencies are broad and deep and include TPM, cellular work flow design, practical problem solving, logistics, design & management, and management systems implementation. His strengths include Strategic Planning, Process Maximization, Analytics, HR Systems and Layout for Flow Processing.
Tom holds a Bachelors in Ministry Leadership (Non-Profit Business Administration), Electrical and Welding Technologies Certificates from Lansing Community College, and an Industrial Hydraulics Certificate from Washtenaw Community College. Tom has designed and implemented several robotic welding systems as well as fixture design. Tom also has several years of machining experience with metals and plastics as well as metal processing in almost all automotive and medical industries. Tom dedicates his capabilities to problem solving by leading critical to quality A3 initiatives as well as leading key layered process audits that have delivered significant reductions in scrap in every business enterprise he leads. Tom also has broad Health & Safety experience and has led many plant teams to reduce injury potential thru prevention design and awareness.
Tom has a great ability for Leadership Acumen from which he cascades into his community through leading small groups in his local church and supporting local charities. He loves to woodwork and has produced many fine pieces of furniture and household accent pieces.
Tom was nominated for “Newcomer of the Year” in 2009 as a part of the National Institute of Technologies - NIST National Conference on Innovation. Tom has developed and implemented several very progressive maintenance and TPM strategies that are nationally recognized as a best practice model and was guest speaker for “Beyond TPM” at the Orlando National Conference.
UK, EUROPE, RUSSIA, AFRICA and the MIDDLE EAST
Stuart Foster is an experienced practitioner, teacher and consultant in Lean helping clients in the private manufacturing, non-manufacturing and government sectors. Stuart has been a manager of operations, technical, planning/logistics, quality and IS functions
As a manufacturing plant manager he led a major lean operational and supply chain transformation in a large European Imaging business which subsequently won UK's Best Factory Award.
Stuart developed his lean manufacturing and Lean Enterprise skills with the Eastman Kodak Company working with Shingijustsu Sensei. As Kodak's Lean Technical Director for the Europe, Africa & Middle East Region he helped many non manufacturing enterprises start their lean journey achieving significant business results.
Stuart's clients span all business and government sectors in Europe.
Theory without action is lifeless.
Sammy Obara learned and implemented the Toyota Production System (TPS) at Toyota facilities in Japan, Brazil, USA and Venezuela. In over 20 years of TPS experience, he has helped around 200 companies. These include TPS projects in diverse environments ranging from schools, to manufacturing, to bio-tech to food industries and in a variety of countries, including China, Mexico, Canada, Indonesia, Brazil, Japan, Austria, the U.K.,
and the U.S.
Sammy is a faculty member with the Lean Institute Brazil and an instructor of Global Strategy Management for the California Community College system. He is a guest lecturer on lean for post-graduate classes at Stanford University and has been a speaker at conferences sponsored by the American Production and Inventory Control Society, the Association for Productivity and Quality (APQ), and the American Society for Quality
Sammy is fluent in Portuguese, Spanish, and English and has a basic knowledge of Japanese. He currently aids companies implementing lean through Honsha Associates. He is currently co-authoring with Pascal Dennis a curriculum on Problem Solving for LEI and is authoring a curriculum in Standardized Work for the Lean Institute Brazil.
SE ASIA and AUSTRALIA
Michael Tay brings with him 20 years of management, marketing and manufacturing experience in the electronics industry. As General Manager of a large manufacturing facility, Michael led the Lean transformation using the principles of the Toyota Production System. His passion for operational excellence using Lean Principles and thinking has helped drive continuous improvement at companies to meet today's customer's ever challenging needs. This is accomplished in a "Learn by Do" environment where teamwork drives the improvement.
Currently, Michael consults for various companies in a variety of businesses across Asia and teaches Lean Manufacturing at a Singapore university.
He has been trained as a Lean and Six Sigma Champion and certified as a Lean Practitioner by a Lean Sensei. He has a Degree in Business Administration from Charles Sturt, a Diploma in Sales and Marketing from the Marketing Institute of Singapore and a Diploma in Mechanical Engineering from the Singapore Polytechnic.