Three big-name executives with plastics connections are in IndustryWeek magazine's inaugural class of the IW Manufacturing Hall of Fame. Gordon Lankton of Nypro Inc., Jack Welch of General Electric Co., and Charles Holliday Jr. of DuPont Co. were among 10 men honored. According to a news release, the hall of fame's purpose is to recognize individual leaders in the manufacturing community "whose vision, leadership, and legacy not only provided value to their individual organizations but also beneficially impacted the larger business community and our society."
During the span of their careers, these 10 leaders have helped to shape a historic and challenging era of change in the manufacturing enterprise. Companies have become increasingly global, sourcing their products across continents, seeking new markets in developing nations and welcoming talent from around the world. They have invested in new technologies that have made manufacturing operations faster, more flexible, leaner and more productive. At the heart of many of these changes has been unprecedented access to, and use of, communications and information technology, allowing component orders placed in Atlanta to be processed in Bangalore, manufactured in Shenzhen and shipped to Seattle with increasing precision, speed and clarity.Lankton, Welch and Holliday are in good company -- others in the class include George David of United Technologies Corp.; Joseph Engelberger, the "father of robotics,"; William George of Medtronic; Andrew Grove of Intel; Lee Iacocca of Chrysler; Steve Jobs of Apple; and lean manufacturing guru James Womack. Congratulations to all, especially the three with strong ties to the plastics industry.