[ The Real McCoy Online Home ]                                                                                                               November 13, 2009

Lean Six Sigma program gains new black belt at Fort McCoy, seeking 3rd black belt

The Installation Management Command (IMCOM)-Northeast region welcomed a Fort McCoy employee as its 13th Lean Six Sigma (LSS) black belt. Throughout IMCOM, there are 39 black belts.
Photo: U.S. Army Garrison Commander Col. David Chesser, left, presents Kathleen Peterson with the Lean Six Sigma Black Belt U.S. Army Certification. (Photo by Val Hyde)
U.S. Army Garrison Commander Col. David Chesser, left,
presents Kathleen Peterson with the Lean Six Sigma Black Belt U.S. Army Certification.
(Photo by Val Hyde)

Kathy Peterson of the Plans, Analysis and Integration Office at Fort McCoy completed the one-month of training (four one-week sessions) at Fort Hood, Texas, to receive the certification. LSS is a process-improvement methodology that focuses on increasing speed and quality or reducing cost of installation operations, she said.

According to the Army LSS guidebook, “black-belt training is a four-week course that familiarizes students with principles, practices and tools of LSS to maximize cost reductions and improve customer satisfaction ... Successful graduates can identify non-value added activities and lead teams tackling complex projects.”

People taking the course must complete a black-belt project as part of the certification.

Peterson facilitated a project on the Fort McCoy Customer Training Support Request process.

A black-belt project differs from a green-belt project in complexity with a longer length of time to complete, requiring a deeper understanding of LSS, and involving several departments or organizations.

After the project was completed, it was reviewed at the region and IMCOM Headquarters levels before being sent to the Enterprise Task Force (Department of the Army) level for final approval.

Peterson’s team was comprised of 12 members from various Fort McCoy directorates and organizations, including major efforts on the part of the Directorate of Plans, Training, Mobilization and Security (DPTMS).

Steven Shanks, Chief of the DPTMS Training Division, served as the project sponsor.

“In addition to regular team members, we had involvement from other Fort McCoy employees,” Peterson said. “It was a total team effort to successfully complete the project.”

Fort McCoy’s Deputy to the Garrison Commander and LSS Deployment Director Al Fournier, has established a goal of three certified black belts, which is based on IMCOM guidance.

Currently there is one certified black belt, one trained black-belt candidate, and an additional black belt is being sought.

Candidates should have at least an associate’s degree, preferably in engineering, business, or a technical/scientific subject, or equivalent work experience.

Desired qualifications also include supervisory experience; solid project-management, team-leadership and group-facilitation skills; sound quantitative-reasoning skills, and the ability to do statistical analysis.

Anyone who is interested or wants more information about LSS in the Fort McCoy community can contact Peterson at 608-388-2003.


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