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Sigma-Aldrich, STLCC Receive 2013 Governor’s Innovative Industry Training Award

September 16, 2013

Sigma Award  
Mo. Gov. Jay Nixon, right, presents the 2013 Governor's Innovative Industry Training Award to Kelly Foster, center, Sigma-Aldrich's director of operations. Also pictured is Rod Nunn, STLCC's vice chancellor for ecomonic development and workforce solutions.

Sigma-Aldrich Corporation, along with its long standing training partner, the Workforce Solutions Group of St. Louis Community College, received the 2013 Governor’s Innovative Industry Training Award at the September 2013 Governor’s Conference on Economic Development in Kansas City.

The award recognizes a Missouri company that demonstrates outstanding success in workforce training.

St. Louis-based Sigma-Aldrich is a leading life science and high-technology company focused on enhancing human health and safety, manufactures and distributes more than 200,000 chemicals, biochemicals and other essential products to more than 1.4 million customers globally in research and applied labs, as well as in industrial and commercial markets. The Fortune 1000 company operates in 38 countries and has more than 9,000 employees, 2,000 of which are based within the St. Louis metropolitan area.

Over the last eight years, STLCC’s Workforce Solutions Group has ongoing training and customized solutions for Sigma-Aldrich’s St. Louis-based facilities. These services have included training and consulting in areas such as lean leadership, lean 5S, six sigma and value stream mapping.

“Sigma-Aldrich fosters an environment of continuous improvement. We are constantly looking for new tools that will drive improvements in service, quality and safety,” said Deborah Slagle, vice president of marketing and research and development for SAFC Life Science Products. “The Workforce Solutions Group has provided, and continues to provide, outstanding support for the implementation of lean 5S across our St. Louis facilities.  The impact of these college services at our facilities have been significant, such as an operations facility having the ability to reclaim more than 5,638 square feet of manufacturing space, valued at approximately $845,700, as well as saving more than 520,000 non-value-added steps per year, the equivalent of 270 miles per year, or the fact that more than $250,000 of unused or seldom used equipment was identified and redistributed for use by other departments.”

“Our practice leaders in the Workforce Solutions Group are committed to advancing businesses through training and consultative services that drive improved business performance,” said Roderick Nunn, STLCC’s vice chancellor for economic development and workforce solutions. “In this case, George Friesen, the region’s foremost thought-leader on lean transformation services, worked closely with company leaders over time to develop resources that instill Kaizen thinking across the organization. We are most appreciative of the partnership with Sigma-Aldrich and the results of our lean transformation practice.”

Sigma-Aldrich, in partnership with STLCC, also has hosted visitors from other local companies to educate and demonstrate firsthand the benefits of lean principles and work processes in today’s manufacturing environment. 

"Sigma-Aldrich is honored to receive this award," said Kelly Foster, director of operations for Sigma-Aldrich. "Our multiyear relationship with St. Louis Community College has been instrumental in driving a transformational culture of operational excellence at our St. Louis sites. Employees are trained in and believe in the concepts of lean manufacturing and 5S, and our customers recognize the resulting improvements in our facilities and processes.  We appreciate the support from the college and look forward to many more years of this partnership." 

To learn more about the Workforce Solutions Group’s training and consulting services, contact George Friesen, business practice leader for lean transformations, at griesen@stlcc.edu or at 314-539-5376.