Four of the nine honorees named to IndustryWeek’s Manufacturing Hall of Fame have ties to companies that have been recognized by EHS Today as America’s Safest Companies. Coincidence? Not if you believe many experts, who note the direct correlation of safe production to enhanced productivity rates.

Manufacturing Hall of Fame inductees are selected by IndustryWeek editors from reader-nominated candidates. Nominations are based on one or more of the following criteria:

  • Significantly improving manufacturing industry efficiency and productivity through process and/or technology innovations.
  • Establishing widely accepted manufacturing best practices in operational areas such as (but not limited to) management, product development, safety, purchasing, quality and supply chain and logistics.
  • Creating manufacturing companies – and even entire industries – from the ground up, through product ideas and/or innovative approaches to business leadership and management.
  • Setting new standards for manufacturers in areas such as sustainability and corporate responsibility.
  • Revitalizing manufacturing organizations and operations through continuous-improvement efforts and/or innovative business practices.
  • Influencing and supporting as well as advocating for the cause of U.S. manufacturing through their research, writings, activism, policies or thought leadership.

“Through our Manufacturing Hall of Fame, IndustryWeek extends recognition to 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,” said IndustryWeek Editor-in-Chief Patricia Panchak.

The 2012 IndustryWeek Manufacturing Hall of Fame class of 2012 is:

Norm Augustine – Augustine engineered the 1995 merger between Martin Marietta and Lockheed, creating the world’s biggest defense contractor – Lockheed Martin. In recent years, his efforts have focused on raising awareness of the critical role that science, technology, engineering and mathematics and STEM education play in getting the United States back on track in a hypercompetitive global economy. Lockheed Martin was named to the first list of America’s Safest Companies in 2002.

Art Byrne – Byrne’s roll-up-your-sleeves, get-to-the-gemba approach to implementing lean manufacturing best practices has become a benchmark for executive involvement in continuous-improvement initiatives. His dramatic transformation of Wiremold is detailed in Jim Womack’s seminal book “Lean Thinking.”

Lewis Campbell – As the CEO of Textron (America’s Safest Companies 2008) in the 2000s, Campbell spearheaded one of the most impressive corporate transformations in modern manufacturing history. In 2002, Campbell launched Textron Six Sigma, which has become a fabric of the company’s operations. 

Scott Crump – The fused-deposition modeling (FDM) process that Crump invented in 1989 has grown into an industry-defining company worth just shy of $200 million that has put additive manufacturing, or 3D printing, on the map. 

Robert Curl – The Rice University emeritus professor shared the 1996 Nobel Prize for Chemistry by virtue of his role in the discovery of the “buckyball,” which paved the way for a new branch of chemistry – nanotechnology – which is a new frontier for EHS practitioners.

Dick Dauch – During Dauch’s illustrious career in the automotive industry, he launched Volkswagen’s U.S. manufacturing operation in 1976; played a key role in Chrysler’s revival in the early 1980s; and led an investment group that purchased five former GM plants in 1994, forming American Axle & Manufacturing. DaimlerChrysler was named one of America’s Safest Companies in 2003.

Doc Hall – For more than 30 years, Hall has been both a student and strong advocate of Japanese production methods and lean manufacturing techniques. An IndustryWeek Best Plants judge since 1990, Hall is a founding member of the Association for Manufacturing Excellence.

Jim McNerney – As the CEO of Boeing since July 2005, McNerney has brought much-needed stability to the aerospace giant’s executive suite, leading Boeing to record revenue and helping the company reclaim its crown as the world’s top commercial-airplane manufacturer.

Paul O’Neill – O’Neill galvanized Alcoa’s work force by setting high standards for occupational safety, transforming the company’s financial results in the process. During his 13-year reign at Alcoa, as he reduced workplace injury rates, Alcoa’s revenues increased from $1.5 billion to $23 billion while net income increased from $200 million to $1.5 billion. It was O’Neill’s dedication to safety, while maintaining high production values and increased productivity, that was one of the catalysts for the launch of America’s Safest Companies. Alcoa was named to the inaugural list of America’s Safest Companies in 2002.

Photo gallery of IndustryWeek’s Manufacturing Hall of Fame Class of 2012.