University of South Carolina

Sanjay Ahire
Sanjay Ahire in a work session on site at Palmetto Health Richland radiology department

Moore School scholar earns highest Six Sigma level

By Clair Boatwright, Darla Moore School of Business,

Sanjay Ahire, a management science professor in the Darla Moore School of Business, has earned the Master Black Belt in Lean Six Sigma and joins fewer than 50 industry professionals nationwide who have attained that level of certification through the American Society of Quality (ASQ).

Lean Six Sigma refers to a globally recognized process improvement approach that helps any organization meet customer needs effectively and efficiently. Ahire’s excellence in practice and leadership on more than 75 Lean Six Sigma projects is what earned him the rank of Master Black Belt, the highest Lean Six Sigma expertise level one can achieve.

ASQ announced in its July 2012 issue of “Quality Progress” magazine that Ahire is the first academic to have been accorded this honor from the flagship quality management organization. ASQ has been the world’s premier association of quality leaders and professionals for more than 65 years, and has registered members in more than 140 countries.

"Obtaining ASQ’s Master Black Belt certification is a rigorous process designed only for those individuals who have strong leadership ability and possess a strong commitment to the advancement of quality," said James J. Rooney, chairman of the board for ASQ.

Rooney cited Ahire for having an impressive portfolio of consulting projects with leading organizations like General Electric, Johnson & Johnson and Walmart and substantial experience in mentoring and training. He said most noteworthy, however, is that Ahire is the first university professor to earn ASQ’s Master Black Belt certification.

"Dr. Ahire has demonstrated dedication to the future of quality through a rare blend of consulting, mentoring, training and research expertise in Lean and Six Sigma,” Rooney said.

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