January 2014

Meet the Senior Department Lean Leaders

Senior Department Lean Leaders provide leadership, training, and mentoring to almost 100 Lean project teams in progress. They also serve on the departmental steering teams and assist with monitoring the projects and measuring their success and sustainability. The 2014 Senior Department Lean Leaders are: Emily Berry, Melanie Brunner, Kriss Cassano, Jeremy Davis, Cindy Lewis, Dana Miller, Jeff Pidcock, Chris Pirigyi, and Anne Wheeler. Melanie, Jeremy and Cindy were Senior Department Lean Leaders in 2013 and have been reappointed. Please take a minute to read about the
new Leaders.

  • Emily Berry has worked in University Advancement since 2004. As Senior Director of Annual Giving, she oversees Miami's Annual Fund program, which raises more than $4 million each year. Emily graduated from Miami in 2001 and completed her Master's Degree here in 2011. She was instrumental in introducing the Lean initiative to University Advancement and has been involved in several Lean projects.
  • Kriss Cassano has been with the Bursar’soffice since 1999 and is currently the Bursar. She completed her Lean Leader certification in May 2013 and is actively involved in assisting with Lean for the Office of Enrollment Management. Kriss has led numerous projects since Lean was introduced to the Bursar’s Office in 2011.
  • Dana Miller has been with IT Services since September 2012. As a Business Analyst, he works with university departments to build new services and improve existing services. He has worked on multiple Lean teams with Physical Facilities, IT Services, Registrar and the Senior Department Lean Leader Group. Dana comes from the University of Washington where he was involved in process improvement efforts using Lean, Kaizen and Balanced Scorecard methods. He is also actively involved with a Seattle based study group which focuses on applying the continuous improvement theories of W. Edwards Deming in the workplace. 
  • Jeff Pidcock began his career in Internal Audit after graduating from Miami in 2011. As an auditor, Jeff's responsibilities include evaluating the adequacy and effectiveness of internal controls and recommending improvements for processes, procedures, and controls. Jeff has led several projects since being introduced to the Lean initiative in the autumn of 2011. As a Senior Department Lean Leader, he will provide leadership to the Budget Office, Environmental Safety and Risk Management, Internal Audit and Consulting Services, and the Police Department.
  • Chris Pirigyi has been a member of Housing, Dining, Recreation and Business Services since May 2007. He spent five years as a General Manager and one year as Executive Manager at the Shriver Center. Chris is currently the Manager of Auxiliary Financials which includes overseeing financial statements of Miami’s Auxiliary businesses such as the Shriver Center, Marcum Hotel and Conference Center, and Dining Services. Chris has extensive Lean team experience, having led several teams since Lean was introduced at Miami.
  • Anne Wheeler has been employed as the Payroll Services Manager since December 2009. She completed her Miami Lean Leader Certification in July, and has participated and led many Lean teams, including several Lean Kaizen events. Anne also brings extensive Lean experience from her prior employment in the manufacturing sector. Please join us in congratulating our new Lean leaders and remember to call on them for their help with your Lean ideas. MU