Operational excellence is the hallmark for six Shingo Prize recipients, six Shingo Silver Medallion recipients and three Shingo Bronze Medallion recipients of the 2008 Shingo Prize for Operational Excellence Business Program. For 20 years, the Shingo Prize has educated, assessed and recognized operational excellence in outstanding companies. This year's companies have challenged traditional paradigms to face competitive challenges in today's global economy.

The Shingo Prize' singular focus is on the application of Dr. Shingo's levels of transformation: Lean principles, systems, and techniques/tools. True innovation is not achieved by superficial imitation or the isolated or random use of lean tools & techniques and systems ("know how"), but instead requires the "know why" – i.e., an understanding of underlying Principles. The Shingo Prize serves as a road map for organizations around the world to transition more confidently to a better future state based on trusted lean principles.

“We congratulate this year's recipients in expanding their lean focus to all their business processes and through all the Shingo levels of transformation,” the Shingo Prize committee announced in a press release. ‘They are creating cultures of continuous improvement and empowering their organizations to see improvement opportunities more clearly. This year's recipients have demonstrated various best-practices in world-class processes and have achieved outstanding results delivering high quality, competitive cost and high customer satisfaction.”

Dubbed the "Nobel Prize of Manufacturing" by Business Week, the Shingo Prize is recognized as the premier award for operational excellence in North America.

"The 2008 recipients have proven themselves as leaders in lean manufacturing and all their supporting business processes," said Bob Miller, Shingo Prize executive director.

The 2008 Conference and Award Ceremony will highlight how lean principles, systems, and techniques/tools deliver global competitiveness and will guide a company's aspirations to be competitive in global markets.

This year's Shingo Prize recipients are:

Baxter, Cartago – Costa Rica

Carestream Health Inc. – Guadalajara, Mexico

KEMET Electronics Corporation, Matamoros Plant – Tamaulipas, Mexico

KEMET Electronics Corporation, Victoria Plant – Tamaulipas, Mexico

Metalworks/Great Openings – Ludington, Mich.

ZF Lemforder Corporation, Tuscaloosa Plant – Alabama

This year's Shingo Silver Medallion recipients are:

GEMA (Global Engine Mfg Alliance LLC), North Plant – Dundee, Mich.

Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control, Camden Operations -- East Camden, Ark.

Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems, Integrated Air Defense Center – Andover, Mass.

This year's Shingo Bronze Medallion recipients are:

Carestream Health Inc., Converting Operations – Windsor, Colo.

Delphi Steering, Prototype Operations Plant 14 – Saginaw, Mich.

Raytheon Missile Systems CamdenCamden, Ark.

(Company profiles can be viewed at http://www.shingoprize.org/Recipients_Business.cfm)

Website: http://www.shingoprize.org//