Excellence in MRO Awards

Recognizing a Few – Elevating a Community

2017 is the inaugural year of the Excellence in MRO Awards.  SDI, Penn State’s Center for Supply Chain Research, University of Tennessee Knoxville, and Peerless Media are co-sponsoring this awards program to recognize leaders that have transformed MRO from a cost of doing business to a strategic lever of competitiveness. Our goal is to engage, share and learn from each other to elevate a community of professionals committed to driving change in their organizations.

Excellence is a process, not a destination. Excellence is about adapting to different challenges and different environments. Excellence changes the conversation from cost centers to enabling processes. Excellence is pragmatic and steeped in real-life experiences. Excellence moves beyond trial and error to open and transparent sharing. MRO Excellence is equal parts people, process, technology and culture.

We are excited to launch the Excellence in MRO Awards, and we invite you to submit an application. If you’ve arrived at Excellence, then let others learn from you. If you’re progressing towards Excellence, then participate to accelerate your learning. If you haven’t started on the journey towards Excellence, then be inspired to move forward by others in the community.


Deadline for entries: April 2, 2018


MRO Awards Judges

Masters of Each of Their Categories

Steve Tracey

Executive Director for Supply Chain Research at Penn State

Also an instructor in Supply Chain Management, Steve is responsible for the leadership, vision and strategy of one of the premier research centers in the creation and dissemination of new knowledge in supply chain management and serves as an ambassador and spokesperson for supply chain activities at Penn State. He currently serves on the West Chester Protective Advisory Board of Directors, and is also an active member of MAPI, APICS, and CSCMP. Steve is a retired U.S. Army officer, serving from 1986-2002, both in active duty and reserve positions. He earned his B.S. in finance from Penn State University, and an M.B.A. from Duke University.

Paul Zelusky

Director, Supply Chain Academy and Six Sigma, The Hershey Company

Paul has more than 25 years of confectionery manufacturing experience with The Hershey Company. Recently assigned to his current role, he is responsible for establishing Learning and Development infrastructure with focus on leadership and technical skills development across Hershey’s expansive Global Supply Chain network. Prior to his current role, Paul served as Director-Quality and Regulatory Compliance, U.S. Region. In that role, he was responsible for Quality and Food Safety across multiple Hershey Manufacturing facilities and Contract Manufacturing partners as well as all Supplier and Distribution Quality initiatives. He also led Hershey’s Lean Six Sigma implementation initiative globally. Paul has spent the majority of his career in leadership roles in multiple Hershey Manufacturing facilities, having led Quality, Engineering, Maintenance, and Operations organizations in The Hershey Company. Paul holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Microbiology from the Pennsylvania State University.

Dr. Klaus M. Blache

Director of the Reliability & Maintainability Center, University of Tennessee

Dr. Blache has 30+ years of experience in various areas of manufacturing and continuous improvement (processes, products and people). Included are areas such as lean manufacturing, reliability & maintenance, competitive analysis, continuous improvement tools & techniques, new facility planning and implementation, industrial engineering, ergonomics, and change management. He has written and lectured globally in numerous technical and management areas. Klaus is also currently Research Professor (College of Engineering). Prior to that, his most recent corporate assignments were Manufacturing Engineering Director (new Cadillac plant, processes, culture), Engineering Launch Manager (new assembly plant), Global Manager of Manufacturing Reliability & Maintenance, and Manager - Corporate Industrial Engineering for General Motors. His experiences include implementing large changes and sustainable continuous improvement all around the world, developing a Corporate R&M process and global implementation, plant assessments/benchmarking and numerous related assignments. Klaus is also a past Chairman of SMRP (Society of Maintenance & Reliability Professionals).


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Excellence in MRO Awards

Recognizing excellence, sharing industry insights, and building a community and culture of success are the goals of this inaugural Excellence in MRO Awards

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Common Questions

About The Awards

Why apply?

Participation in the Excellence in MRO Awards process provides real-world opportunities to improve MRO processes across your enterprise. Every participant receives a report comparing your response to our benchmark group, with relevant client insights and industry best practices. Winners will present their case study at the Q4 2017 Innovation Symposium.

What criteria will be used?

The application will assess MRO as an integrated end-to-end process within your organization.Our independent judging panel covers a wide and diverse range of backgrounds and experiences. They will assess and provide feedback to qualitative, quantitative, and short essay questions along the entire end-to-end MRO continuum. All individual responses and content will be held in the highest confidence. We will use your responses to deliver a blind benchmark study for all participants.

How do I get started?

Engage your organization, challenge conventional thinking and disrupt the status quo. Work with others that have a role in managing MRO processes within your organization to understand their perspective on questions involving their area of expertise. And take this as an opportunity to extend your influence beyond your function and your organization.Complement your application with documentation to help our judges evaluate your people, process, technology and cultural practices to elevate your MRO process to the level of Excellence.All applications must be complete and submitted by July 28, 2017.


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