Fisher College of Business logo

Gary Butler

BiographyCourses

Gary Butler is an Executive in Residence in the Management Sciences department. He came to Fisher in 2008 after spending more than 30 years at Eastman Kodak Co., where he managed operations in Europe, Asia and North America. While working as an executive at Kodak, Butler from 2003-06 taught operations and supply chain management at the Rochester Institute of Technology’s E. Philip Saunders College of Business and served as a visiting professor at the U.S. Business School in Prague, Czech Republic.

Butler has extensive experience in quality assurance, lean methodology and manufacturing management, which gives him an ability to mentor others in business system changes that are reshaping manufacturing and service organizations today. He has worked with R&D, manufacturing and marketing sales units to optimize these programs from concept to post production. At Eastman Kodak, he led graphics through its lean journey, achieving significant cost and inventory reductions while maintaining the outstanding quality and delivery performance to the customer.

At Fisher, Butler also serves as the co-director of the Master of Business Operational Excellence degree program, where he finds, vets and coaches all of the leaders assigned as coaches to students. In addition to working with more than two-dozen lean coaches through the MBOE program, Butler himself has coached students from ThedaCare, Lehigh Valley Health Network, Akron Children’s Hospital, Clopay Plastic Products, Boeing Co., Owens Corning, GE Aviation, Tegrant Corp., and more.

In recent years, Butler has privately consulted with and served on advisory boards of private and publicly held companies and organizations.

Education

  • MBA, University of Rochester, Simon Business School
  • BS in Chemical Engineering, University of Pittsburgh

Areas of Expertise

  • Quality assurance
  • Lean methodology
  • Manufacturing management

MBOE: Foundation and Stability, Part I

Students further develop their ability to see waste through an introduction to value stream mapping and statistics. Activities include the “Pencil Pushers” case and cause-and-effect problem solving.

MBOE: Creating and Managing Flow

In this module, students understand how to apply standard work to the flow of materials, information and people along with the ability to identify what is stopping flow. This section of the MBOE curriculum tackles problem solving at the operational level.

MBOE: Leading and Managing Change

In this module, students are introduced to the lean management system, wherein they understand their role as a leader within the system. Also discussed are barriers and opportunities faced when implementing tiered visual management. Students should be able to lead a strategic team to develop a Hoshin Plan and help senior management communicate the strategy and amend based on feedback.

MBOE: Sustaining the Gains

Students become fully capable of continuing the lean journey in their organizations as practitioners who understand what change they can lead and where they will need ongoing help and support.