Kentucky Guardsman chosen for Lean Six Sigma training

By Stacy Floden, Kentucky National Guard Public Affairs

Chief Warrant Officer Jess Willard preparing for his two week Lean Six Sigma training after being selected by the National Guard Bureau Office of Business Transformation. (courtesy photo)

(FRANKFORT, Ky.) – Chief Warrant Officer Jess Willard was the only warrant officer in Kentucky offered the opportunity for the LSS training based on his superior performance at Warrant Officer Basic Course. He was selected by the National Guard Bureau Office of Business Transformation.

Willard was one of seven Kentucky warrant officers who qualified last year and was offered the opportunity following an outstanding individual accomplishment as the class distinguished honor graduate. A considerable achievement considering there were Soldiers from all three components in the class; Active Duty, Army National Guard, and United States Army Reserve.

“Quite simply, Willard standouts because not only is he a high achiever, but he had the courage and initiative to except the leader development opportunity that was offered to him,” said Command Chief Warrant Officer Dean Stoops. “Not only does he fill a critical skill and need within the Guard, but is now a leader, trainer and mentor to the sustainment community.”

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The LSS training consists of ten days of resident training. Willard completed the training earlier this month. LSS serves to support process improvement with a documented, standardized and easily repeated method. Department of Army civilians, senior enlisted, warrant officers and traditional O grades from the Army National Guard and Air National Guard from various states are in attendance.

“It was an honor to be offered the training. I hope to make good use of it,” said Willard. “I have received tools and techniques that will be useful to enhance business processes, solve complicated problems through statistical analysis and better the organization.”

Willard has been in the Guard for nearly 18 years. He is no stranger to recognition. He was named Kentucky National Guard NCO of the Year in 2011.

“Like all of our newly appointed warrant officers, Willard is the future of the Guard and the United States Army,” stated Stoops. “Therefore, it is in our best interest to invest

heavily in their future and provide the best leadership development opportunities we have to offer.”

The process in becoming LSS trained and Army certified requires time and hard work. The goal of training is to eliminate waste and reduce variation in the processes surrounding them. LSS can be effective in providing tools and a basic mainframe for problem solving.

 

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