COE leader departing role; search to begin for successor

A leadership transition is under way at The Ohio State University Center for Operational Excellence, with longtime Executive Director Peg Pennington departing her role later this month.

peg pennington
Peg Pennington

Pennington, who joined COE in 2003 and has served as executive director for nearly a decade, will be leaving the role effective July 27. On July 30, she’ll be joining Powell, Ohio-based online lean/Six Sigma training provider LLC as its president.

“Over my time at Fisher, it has been an honor and a privilege to teach our great students and to partner with our member companies and the broader operational excellence community,” Pennington said. “Our center has grown exponentially since I first joined in 2003, and it’s the passion for continuous learning and process excellence that all our member companies bring that has made it the vibrant community it is today. I know COE is destined for great things going forward.”

Though Pennington will be stepping away from a formal role at Fisher College of Business, she’ll remain on the faculty of the college’s Master of Business Operational Excellence program.

At the center, the search for Pennington’s successor will begin yet this summer, with plans to have the position filled this fall. Dr. Peter Ward, the longtime academic director of the center, will be moving from his current role as senior associate dean at Fisher in August to assume greater responsibility with COE during and after this transition.

The remainder of COE’s core team – Krista Barezinsky (, member relations manager; Matt Burns (, associate director of marketing and communications; and Jackie McClure, administrative associate ( – is on hand to ensure continuity of service and a continued roster of high-quality event programming.

We’ll be providing updates on the succession process via e-mail to our member community and here via our Think Op-Ex blog.

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