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KNOXVILLE — DENSO Manufacturing Tennessee Inc., Instrument Cluster Division, in Maryville, will receive a 2006 Platinum State Shingo Prize on Oct. 10.

The University of Tennessee’s Center for Industrial Services (CIS) administers the Tennessee State Shingo Prize for Manufacturing Excellence and will host the Shingo Prize conference at the Marriott Hotel in Knoxville. The awards luncheon begins at 11:45 a.m.
DENSO Manufacturing Tennessee is part of a global company that is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of advanced technology, components and systems for major automakers. The Instrument Cluster Division employs more than 650 people who produce not only instrument clusters, but also center displays and air-conditioning control panels. Customers include Toyota, DaimlerChrysler, Honda, Ford and General Motors.

Earlier this year, the division became the first DENSO North American location to achieve an environmental milestone for the company — 95 percent landfill waste reduction targets.

Dubbed “the Nobel Prize for manufacturing” by Business Week magazine, the Shingo Prize is named for Japanese industrial engineer Shigeo Shingo, who helped create revolutionary manufacturing practices at Toyota Motor Co. The Shingo Prize recognizes business excellence and focuses on the development and implementation of Lean manufacturing principles and techniques.

CIS, an agency of UT’s Institute for Public Service, contracted through the national Shingo organization to administer the award for the state. Only universities or non-profit organizations can administer the contest.

State Shingo Prize levels are bronze, silver, gold and platinum. Companies are encouraged to compete annually to work their way up the prize ladder. Platinum winners are invited to compete for the national award.

The day-long conference will bring together manufacturers from across the state and give attendees the chance to discuss innovative, successful manufacturing practices.
“This is an opportunity to learn how other companies are reducing costs and improving their businesses,” said Misty DePriest, CIS Lean manufacturing consultant.

The conference will include keynote speakers from John Deere, Siemens and DENSO.
Conference registration and information are available at http://cis.tennessee.edu.
UT’s CIS provides professional, technical and educational services to help companies improve their operations.



Misty DePriest,(615) 253-6926, Misty.DePriest@tennessee.edu