Chief Operating Officer

  • Corporate and Program Development and Management
  • Multi-National Manufacturing Facilities and Operations Development, Implementation, Staffing, Productivity Improvement, and Management & Administration
  • Technology / Product Transfer and Commercialization
  • Safety Process Development and Auditing
  • Quality Assurance / Quality Control Management and Compliance

With over 30 years of manufacturing and direct support responsibilities in a variety of manufacturing industries, Mr. Klein has demonstrated an ability to achieve measurable improvements in facility and process operations using innovative problem solving and participative management techniques.

While completing his BS degree in Electrical Engineering at the University of Tennessee, Vic was hired by the Knoxville Utilities Board. He remained there for 6 years, during which time he completed his MBA in Industrial Management. Supervising a small staff of engineers, co-op students, and technicians, he developed several innovative software programs to improve the electrical distribution system load and fault analysis and designed a low-cost load shedding control system for remote substations.

In 1974, Vic was recruited by the Rohm and Haas Tennessee Company. He worked initially in the plant engineering department where he designed a control system for a clamp application area in the large, automated Plexiglas mold assembly line. Promoted into production management, he continued to design process improvements in both hardware and scheduling to enable efficient production of an increasingly custom-order business. In 1982, Vic was transferred to the corporate headquarters in Philadelphia as the product supervisor for Plexiglas molding powders. In this position, his responsibilities included order processing, technical support, and capital improvements for the company’s plants in Bristol, PA, and Louisville, KY.

In 1984, Vic was promoted to the position of Emulsions Area Manufacturing Manager in the company’s Croydon, PA plant, which was beset by union issues and high turnover. His application of Total Quality Management principles resulted in a significant turnaround and made the facility a model of customer-focus with improvements in quality, safety, on-time performance, waste reduction, and all but eliminated employee grievances. He was promoted to the position of Corporate Director of Safety in 1987 and charged with the mission to implement similar changes in the area of safety management. Managing a staff of safety and engineering professionals, he developed and implemented in 47 plants worldwide a corporate community risk policy, including a method for prioritization, and created and implemented a plant audit process that resulted in employees accepting “ownership” for safety issues. Additionally, he implemented a new worldwide accident reporting system that resulted in the company being the only audited major chemical producer not to receive significant record-keeping fines during the late 1980’s.

When Rohm and Haas reorganized into business units in 1989, Vic was promoted to the position of Worldwide Manufacturing Manager of the Petroleum Chemicals business team. In this role, he managed and had P&L responsibility for manufacturing plants in France, Canada, Texas, and a joint venture operation in Japan. A threat to the existence of the business, resulting from a change in the standard material used for automobile engine seals, was averted when Mr. Klein led a team of researchers and plant production and laboratory personnel to reformulate a major product line from concept to implementation in only 30 days.

Mr. Klein joined Kleerdex Company in 1992 as the Plant Manager and then later as Vice-President of Manufacturing. The Company was still in a start-up phase to produce flame-retardant, high-impact thermoplastic sheet, and was developing a niche for small-quantity custom orders of extruded sheet products. During his tenure, Mr. Klein led the effort to be the first ISO-9000 certified company in the region and to implement Kaizen process improvement teams. He also provided capacity for 280% growth in volume, reduced manufacturing costs by over 23%, and improved on-time performance by 15%, productivity/work-hour by over 68%, and overall equipment efficiency by over 20%, while reducing inventories by 30%, workplace injuries by 50%, employee turnover by 75%, and waste disposal by 75%. He also received a Governor’s Award for Industrial Recycling efforts. When the company’s business in the western U.S. appeared to be growing rapidly, he successfully managed an $8 million capital expansion budget to start a new plant in Reno, NV, in only six months.

In 1999, Vic became the Vice-President of Engineering. In this position, he supported a major international capital growth plan for Kleerdex and worked with its equipment suppliers to develop and run extended trials of an innovative continuous mixing system for rigid PVC compounds. This saved over $750,000 in installation cost compared to existing technology and eliminated intermediate storage requirements. He also developed systems for bulk raw material delivery and developed a grant from the state for the addition of a rail siding and associated equipment to allow global purchasing to support an emerging business. When the economic downturn began to erode seriously Kleerdex’s business, he packaged the assets of a business segment, located a buyer, and closed a sale worth $1.3 million as part of a restructuring of the company.

In early 2003, Mr. Klein formed Bear Gap Consulting, providing services to the management of manufacturing industries. In this capacity he has been involved in developing, negotiating, and implementing a corporate reorganization and the financial restructuring of a troubled metal finishing company that provided for repayment of a $1.5 million debt. He also prepared a business plan, developed through communications with employees, customer, creditors, and interested investors that would enable the company to return to profitable operations within 18 months. In other assignments he has provided process improvement methods and equipment designs for plastic compounding, sheet extrusion, and calendaring companies.

Vic has known and worked closely with Mr. Maimon since 2001.

Vic’s additional professional education and training credits include the Dr. W. E. Deming course, “The Competitive Edge”, George Washington University (1984), Strategic Business Management, Harbridge House (1985), and World-Class Manufacturing, Harbridge House (1990).

 

Summit and Infrastructure Development & Construction Innovation – Perfect Together!

 

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