SOUTHFIELD, Mich., July 21, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- The Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG) announced the appointment of Mr. Courtney W. Harvath, senior director, supply chain, Ryder System, Inc., and Mr. Jeffrey S. Wagner, corporate quality director, powertrain, and global quality director, Sealing & Gaskets Business Unit, Federal-Mogul Corporation, to its board of directors. More than 20 executives from the automotive and transportation OEM and supplier community currently serve on the AIAG board, representing a cross-section of its member companies.
AIAG's board of directors is responsible for maintaining the organization's commitment to a seamless, efficient, and responsible supply chain by providing strategic direction and overseeing the organization's collaborative effort to build and enhance the industry's competitiveness.
"AIAG is in a very unique position to drive sustainable improvements within the automotive industry," says Harvath. "AIAG provides a robust platform for supply chain stakeholders of all sizes to effectively collaborate and ultimately drive change within the industry."
Harvath notes that AIAG's ability to facilitate action-oriented work groups that develop new supply chain standards and best practices is paramount to evolving higher quality, stronger corporate responsibility, and more efficient supply chains. "The AIAG leadership team and its network of industry volunteers are reshaping the automotive supply chain."
"AIAG is in a one-of-a-kind position in the transportation industry because it provides the only real and effective connection among all stakeholders in the supply chain," agrees Wagner. "AIAG is a clearinghouse of information and best practices and has the experience on how to share those across the industry."
Both executives bring unique interests, experiences, and strengths to the AIAG board.
Harvath's experience, which spans 14 years, includes strategic network optimization, operational implementation, transformational leadership, and LEAN process integration. He is passionate about developing efficient, cost-effective, and transparent inbound material flows and is the first logistics provider to have a seat on the AIAG board of directors.
"I'm very excited to bring a logistics and transportation perspective to the board of directors," he says. "Logistics providers play an integral role in corporate responsibility, supply chain risk management, and overall quality, through the networks we design and manage, materials and vehicles that we transport, and stakeholders we engage. My goal is to engage logistics thought leadership across North America and evaluate how logistics providers can play a larger role in shaping our industry. AIAG has the ability to provide that platform."
Wagner's experience includes seven years headquartered in China where he led the growth of several product line technologies for Federal-Mogul, expanding his company's presence there from a virtual start-up to double-digit year-on-year growth. Through a diverse 30-year career with Federal Mogul, he has held positions from engineering and sales to operations management, product strategy, and now quality — a breadth of expertise that mirrors AIAG's all-encompassing engagement with the supply chain, he says.
Wagner is particularly passionate about the role that processes play in optimizing reliability. "The transportation industry is extremely complex, so it is most important to identify the correct processes and make relationships to them," he says. "The common denominator is that everything is connected to a process. The simpler the process, the more effective it is and the more quickly you can get down to what's really important."
Through their service on the AIAG board, Harvath and Wagner look forward to impacting key industry initiatives like the structural changes in the upcoming new ISO/TS global quality standard and working to improve U.S.-Mexico border security and visibility. "AIAG has the ability to provide the platform to address just about any issue that challenges our industry," says Harvath, "and it's an honor to be nominated to serve."
"AIAG provides an overview at the grassroots level of what the industry requires and then complements that need with excellent training and events," adds Wagner. "AIAG also plays a key role in escalating any concerns within the supply chain to the attention of OEMs and the governing bodies. AIAG can bridge a lot of gaps so that new standards are effectively implemented, administered, and executed, and has a great vantage point from which to do this. I look forward to serving on the board of an organization that really makes tangible improvements to our industry."
About AIAG The Automotive Industry Action Group is a unique not-for-profit organization where OEMs, suppliers, service providers, government entities, and individuals in academia have worked collaboratively for more than 30 years to drive down costs and complexity from the supply chain. AIAG membership includes preeminent manufacturers and many of their parts suppliers and service providers. For more information, visit www.aiag.org.