NASHVILLE, TN — Long-time Section 1211 member, quality educator and ASQ Fellow Jim Smith has been selected as ASQ’s 2015 recipient of the E.L. Grant Medal.
The Grant Medal is presented by ASQ to the individual who has been deemed by the award committee to have demonstrated outstanding leadership in the development and presentation of a meritorious educational program in quality control. The medal will be presented May 3, 2015 at ASQ’s World Conference on Quality and Improvement at the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center in Nashville, Tenn., before the annual business meeting.
Jim’s selection citation reads as follows:
“For significant results in an educational program for ASQ Certification training spanning 30 years involving over 8,000 students in 100-plus companies with a first time certification exam pass rate of 83 percent and an overall exam pass rate of 96 percent.”
Past recipients of the Grant Medal include such quality luminaries as Joseph Juran, Kaoru Ishikawa, Harold F. Dodge, Yoshio Kondo, Frank M. Gryna, Dorian Shainin, Noriaki Kano, Max Astrachan and Mason E. Wescott.
Jim Smith retired after a long career with Caterpillar, with most of his time spent in the Quality Department. At Caterpillar, Jim developed a quality training program second-to-none. His ASQ quality certification courses created a quality–minded culture not only in management but in the rank and file workers as well. Thousands of individuals from Cat, Cat suppliers and other area businesses took part in his training programs. His students’ success rates were outstanding. After he “retired” (for Jim there is no such word) he formed S-Squared Enterprises USA (with Walt Saal) as a quality and management consulting firm. An off-shoot of this business is the Jim Smith Quality Group through which the ASQ certification and other quality training continues. Jim also is a contributor to Quality Magazine (“Jim’ Gems” and “The Face of Quality”) and he contributes articles to Interbusiness Issues.
The award's namesake, Eugene L. Grant (1897-1996), was a founder of the fields of engineering economics, industrial engineering and statistical quality control (SQC). He was also one of the founding fathers of the American Society for Quality Control (ASQC, now ASQ) in 1946.