ASQ World Conference

The drive for improvement and results is accelerating-in business, in communities, even in people's everyday lives. Delivering the knowledge, information, membership experience and expertise of quality improvement to business, industry and individuals worldwide is the focus of the American Society for Quality (ASQ, Milwaukee, Wis.) the world's leading authority on quality, which marks its 60th anniversary this month.

As one of the world's largest professional organizations, ASQ members-quality management professionals and practitioners represent all business and economic sectors around the world. From the Society's historic base in U.S. manufacturing, it has long since expanded its expertise to help quality tools and technologies be applied in education and student achievement, all the services industries, healthcare, nonprofits and government.

Quality professionals from all of these industries will travel the globe to learn, share ideas and network at the 2006 World Conference on Quality and Improvement, (http://wcqi.asq.org) which takes place on May 1-3, at the Midwest Airlines Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. This year's Conference celebrates achievements of the past 60 years while embracing the future of quality. In addition to industry-specific sessions, highlights will include:

* Findings from ASQ's new Futures Study - looking ahead at the key forces that will shape the future of quality during the next decade.

* Inspiring keynote speakers: Sister Mary Jean Ryan, President/CEO of SSM Health Care, one of the largest Catholic health care systems in the United States and recognized by Modern Healthcare as one of 25 top women in healthcare; General Benjamin S. Griffin, Commander, U.S. Army Material Command and Professor Bernard Amadei, Founding President of Engineers Without Borders-USA and Professor of Civil Engineering at the University of Colorado-Boulder; James McCaslin, President/CEO, Harley-Davidson, Inc.

* International Team Excellence Live Competition - The only process of its kind in the U.S., since 1985 over 700 teams from the United States and throughout the world have gathered at the Conference to compete for top honors in quality improvement.

* Executive Roundtable - For the first time, ASQ will host an invitation-only event for business leaders to share stories and discuss issues from outsourcing and the energy crisis to work force development and leadership. Roundtable speakers include Kevin Jones, Vice President of Quality, Lockheed Martin and James McCaslin, President/CEO, Harley-Davidson, Inc.

In addition to the World Conference, ASQ will celebrate its 60th anniversary with a number of grassroots initiatives for its members including recognition programs for current members of five years or more; discounted rates on select training tools, special feature articles in ASQ publications and an anniversary 'micro' web site that will feature a historical timeline of quality, anniversary blog and other special content via www.asq.org/60.

"As we celebrate a special time in our remarkable history, we look forward to welcoming others into our journey toward the future," said Jerry Mairani, ASQ president. "By making quality a global priority, organizational imperative and personal ethic, ASQ becomes the community of choice for everyone who seeks quality concepts, technology and tools to improve themselves and their world."

With more than 90,000 individual and organizational members, the Society truly is building a world-wide quality community having worked with such reputable and well-known companies as Alcoa, Harley-Davidson, Boeing and Sun Microsystems to advance learning and quality improvement.

"The expertise and knowledge exchange that ASQ has provided during our relationship has made a major impact on our journey to excellence, "said Kevin Jones, Vice President of Quality for Lockheed Martin. "Not only has it resulted in improved business performance but it has led to an all-around better workplace." Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control business unit is an organizational member of ASQ. This membership provides its 10,000 employees with full access to ASQ global community and resources, including quality tools and technologies customized to meet the company's specific needs.

As a champion of the quality movement, ASQ offers technologies, concepts, tools, and training to quality professionals, quality practitioners, and everyday consumers, encouraging all to Make Good GreatTM. ASQ members have informed and advised the U.S Congress, government agencies and state legislatures on quality-related topics. The Society has been the sole administrator of the prestigious Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award since 1991. Headquartered in Milwaukee, Wis for the past 50 years, the 60-year-old organization is a founding partner of the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI), a prominent quarterly economic indicator, and also produces the Quarterly Quality Report, which measures customer perceptions of the quality and reliability of products and services.

Source: American Society for Quality

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