Advanced Electronic Manufacturing

Tracy Bates – GMI’s First Black Belt – New Director of Quality – Lean Champion

Tracy Bates – GMI’s First Black Belt – New Director of Quality – Lean Champion

Tracy Bates – GMI’s First Black Belt – New Director of Quality – Lean Champion

Tracy joined GMI in October 2013. As Director of Quality, Tracy is responsible for investigating when supplier or customer issues arise as well as serving as the ISO 9001 Management Representative. She is also working to develop the lean culture at GMI, in both North Carolina and Costa Rica. GMI recently introduced additional visual management and other lean manufacturing fundamentals to drive improvement.

 

Born and raised in North Carolina, she is a ‘Carolina girl’ at heart. Tracy went to Georgia Tech to study Chemical Engineering and graduated with her Bachelor’s degree along with two years’ work experience through the Cooperative Education program. Fresh out of college, Tracy started her career with Hoechst Celanese in Charlotte, NC as a development engineer and went to school at night to earn her MBA from UNCC.
 
Through the years, Tracy has held positions of increasing responsibility in manufacturing, quality, and plant management, but it is continual improvement work that is her passion.  She holds a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt certification from NCSU and is currently coaching ten GMI Green Belt candidates through the certification process.  “The ability to think and act in a systematic way, using the DMAIC (Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, and Control) process, can be used on complex projects or in day-to-day routine troubleshooting. GMI will benefit in many ways from more associates having these skills and using these tools,” says Tracy.
 
Family is important to Tracy.  She is married and has two very active teenagers, a son and a daughter.  She jokingly says that their hobbies and activities are her hobbies and activities.  Her son is heading to Georgia Tech to study next year and she is extremely proud of his accomplishments; she is also glad to have her daughter home for a few more short years and plans to make every moment memorable!
 
Tracy summarizes her thoughts on GMI: “It is such a joy to work at GMI. Everyone has welcomed me and I have felt a part of the GMI family since the beginning of my short tenure. I am all about positive change: different is not always better, but better is always different. GMI is well poised for the future with a focus on positive change and improvement in a hands-on team based environment. The achievements of an organization result from of the combined effort of each individual and none of us alone are as smart as all of us are together.”