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Thursday, June 09, 2011 - Pawley Institute launches Summer Lean Series
The Oakland University Pawley Lean Institute will offer new Lean training opportunities this summer with its Summer Lean Series, hosted at the Macomb-OU INCubator in Sterling Heights, Mich.

The program consists of three sessions: Lean 101 on June 29, Value Stream Mapping on July 11 and How to Diversify Using Lean on August 2. Each session will cover a different aspect of the Lean philosophy.

Lean 101, presented by Debra Setman, founder and lead adviser of consulting firm Arbed Solutions, will concentrate on the basics of Lean thinking: the history, definition, purpose, benefits and principles.

Participants will learn the critical success factors of Lean and the fundamental rules of Lean. The focus will be on organizational culture, the Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA) cycle and the house of Lean.

The session Value Stream Mapping (VSM) will define the practice of the tool, with an emphasis on when and how to employ it. This interactive session also includes hands-on application of the tool.

Participants will engage with speakers Lester Sutherland, Lean six sigma coach at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and Howard Weston, managing director for Ken Wantuck Associations (KWA) North.

The last session, How to Diversify Using Lean, aims to give participants a thorough understanding of the reasons why companies diversify, and how to use Lean to further develop and encourage entrepreneurship.

Janie Farner, senior Lean training and consulting manager for Production Modeling Corporation (PMC), and Ravi Lote, global operations manager for PMC, will discuss how to implement Lean as both an assessment tool and a way to diversify smoothly.

The Summer Lean Series program is $50 per session or $125 for all three. OU staff and current students get a 40% discount. Space is limited. All sessions will run from 8:30 a.m.-12 p.m. with a continental breakfast at 8 a.m.

The Summer Lean Series is one of the Pawley Institute’s Lean training programs, designed to teach the principles and philosophy of Lean to the community. For more information about this series and other training opportunities, visit

Speaker Profiles

Debra Setman:
  • founder and lead adviser of Arbed Solutions, a company dedicated to helping and teaching businesses to make positive, Lean changes to their work
  • founder and vice chair of the Michigan Lean Consortium
  • has 18 years of professional Lean experience, leading over 300 kaizen events and nearly 75 Lean assessments, while teaching Lean thinking to more than 50 countries
Lester Sutherland:
  • Lean six sigma coach in the Operations Department at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • has received awards for both production and quality improvement at Ford Motor Company, which illustrate his commitment to and success in implementing Lean in the workplace
Howard Weston:
  • managing director at KWA North, a management consulting industry that spreads the practice of Just-In-Time production to local manufacturing companies
  • has provided over 27 years of Lean training and mentoring
Janie Farner:
  • senior Lean training and consulting manager for PMC, a business designed to help companies increase their productivity
  • has accomplished success with Lean in the health care, manufacturing and administration fields
Ravi Lote:
  • global operations manager for PMC
  • certified six sigma black belt and supply chain professional 
  • has worked to achieve process improvement solutions in the automotive, health care, insurance and construction fields