Terrie Doom and Dustin House stand with Under Secretary of the Army, Honorable Ryan McCarthy and Dr. Charles T. Brandon III. Director of the Army Continuous Improvement Process Program at the 10th annual LEAP Award ceremony.

The RG-31 is a mine resistant ambush protected vehicle that provides small-arms and mine blast protection.

Letterkenny earns Lean Six Sigma Award at Pentagon

By: Nora Zubia, Letterkenny Public Affairs Officer


Letterkenny Army Depot (LEAD) was recognized for its outstanding organizational and project team efforts during the 10th annual 2017 Army Lean Six Sigma Excellence Award Program (LEAP) on July 25th, in the Pentagon’s Hall of Heroes by Under Secretary of the Army, the Honorable Ryan McCarthy and Dr. Charles T. Brandon III, Director of the Army Continuous Improvement Process Program.


LEAD’s Directorate of Industrial Operations, Process Support Division Black Belt Team was selected for this prestigious awbased on its efforts in reducing process lead time and direct labor hours in the Route Clearance Vehicle RG-31 program final paint process. The team identified and addressed root causes for delays in the RG-31 final paint process by increasing the amount of aluminum foil and decreasing the amount of masking tape used for paint preparation which decreased the time to demask after the last painting process step.


LEAD was selected out of 44 highly competitive projects and deployment nominations. Award winners were recognized for demonstrating and deploying continuous process improvement initiatives and achieving exceptional results providing readiness at best value.


Team members include Jason Nold (project sponsor), Dustin House (Black Belt candidate), Terrie Doom (Master Black Belt candidate mentor) and Bernard Mathess (subject matter expert). House earned his Black Belt certification after completing this project and Doom is working on her certification for Master Black Belt.


“The project supported the LEAD performance to promise which supports the Soldier,” Doom said. “It was an honor to be a part of the process.”


The RG-31 drying time for the non-skid adhesive and paint priming was increased which decreased paint blistering defects and reduced rework. The paint and quality schedule was aligned to reduce delays in the final quality acceptance process. The improvements in the RG-31 final paint process reduced the direct labor hours per unit by 34 percent resulting in a cost avoidance of $4.49M over five years and supports the program schedule.


The RG-31 is a mine-resistant ambush protected vehicle that’s latest variant includes improvements including an engine upgrade from 275 to 300 horse power, a transmission upgrade from 2,500 to a 3,000 series, independent suspension, 360-degree spotlights for night visibility, and an armored gunner's hatch.


Lean process improvement has been a lifestyle on the depot for over a decade. LEAD has earned 10 Shingo Medallions for manufacturing excellence since 2005 and has created a culture that embraces the entire workforce by staying engaged and identifying waste in order to improve LEAD business practices.