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Six Sigma 2012: Political Ambitions?

Soon after announcing that he was forming an exploratory committee for a potential bid for the presidency in 2012, former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty was heard touting the virtues of Six Sigma process improvement for government reform. In March, according to the Politico.com blog, the Republican Pawlenty had a conference call with many of his supporters, saying he “couldn’t be more excited about” a chance to apply Six Sigma principles to improve the way the federal government operates.

Meanwhile, Chris Collins, the County Executive of Erie County, N.Y., USA, and prominent advocate of the application of Lean Six Sigma in government, has announced that he will run for a second term in this year’s November election. Collins, whose name is often mentioned on a short list of future gubernatorial candidates for New York state, has also appointed Black Belt and former Motorola Inc. executive James Melton as the new director of Lean Six Sigma programs and initiatives for Erie County.

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In his announcement speech, Collins cited his record of reform of Erie County’s finances and the efficiencies discovered through the use of Lean Six Sigma. Since taking office, Collins has reduced the number of county employees, improved the delivery of county services, maintained a steady tax rate and held spending to a growth rate of almost zero.

In Dallas, David Kunkle, the city’s former police chief, has announced his intentions to run for mayor, saying he will favor the application of continuous improvement programs to address the city’s most pressing needs. Kunkle, who also served as assistant city manager for Dallas, says one of his priorities, if elected, will be to “focus on improvements” in government by using “established methods” such as re-engineering, core process mapping, Lean Six Sigma and Kaizen.

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Eric Doden, a Republican candidate for mayor of Fort Wayne, Ind., USA, said that, if elected, he would continue the city’s process improvement programs initiated in 2000 by former Mayor Graham Richard, including customer service training for city employees and the public posting of financial goals for each city department. By renewing a commitment to Six Sigma, Doden said he wants to promote a “culture of productivity” in city government.

Latest updates:

Gingrich Signs Pledge to Adopt Lean Six Sigma in Government if Elected
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GOP Candidate Pawlenty: Six Sigma Can Cut Government Costs by 20 Percent
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Erie County Executive Collins to Cut 300 Redundant Jobs by 2012
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