Recent ASQ Meetings in Washington, DC
The following is a synopsis of meetings held on behalf of ASQ in Washington, DC, Feb. 2-3, 2004. Representing ASQ: Amy Kimball, Sellery Associates, Inc., and Dick Sandretti, Sandretti Associates, Inc.
A series of meetings was held on behalf of ASQ over the two days. In addition, two conference calls were placed. Because of unforeseen circumstances, meetings on Tuesday afternoon had to be postponed and are being rescheduled for the next visit in early March (ricin and an ice storm curtailed activities). Primary activity for the next visit will revolve around development of support for funding of the new not-for-profit category of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award.
Two conference calls were held in the early afternoon of Feb. 2. The first was with ASQ headquarters and dealt with the Baldrige mark up and TSA activities. The second call was with ASQ member Michael Williamson. Mr. Williamson is employed in state government in North Carolina and has long been active in ASQ’s Government Division. Mr. Williamson is planning a visit to Washington on Feb. 9, at which time Amy Kimball will escort him on visits to the Hill in support of the Baldrige bill. Mr. Williamson supplied examples of successes in North Carolina government related to use of the Baldrige criteria. The examples are included in suggested remarks by Rep. Brad Miller (D-NC), sponsor of the legislation.
Subsequently, the legislation was marked up on Feb. 4 and could reach the House floor as early as Feb. 11. Following is the language read into the mark up session related to the bill:
H.R. 3389, To amend the Stevenson-Wydler Technology Innovation Act of 1980 to permit Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Awards to be made to nonprofit organizations.
Sponsored by Rep. Brad Miller (D-NC) and Rep. Melissa Hart (R-PA), H.R. 3389 would add the category of "Nonprofit" to the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. The Baldrige National Quality Award was established in 1987 by Congress, and is named for Malcolm Baldrige, who served as Secretary of Commerce from 1981-1987. The award that bears his name promotes quality awareness by recognizing U.S. organizations for their achievements in quality and performance. Over 300 volunteer quality experts judge the applicants through a rigorous process that includes site visits and interviews.
The five existing categories to which nonprofit has been added are: manufacturing, service, small business, education, and health care. The category of nonprofit includes federal, state, and local government; private not-for-profit organizations, and quasi-public organizations created by legislative authority such as municipal utilities and credit unions.
Rep. Miller stated, "The Baldrige Awards have been remarkably effective in focusing on criteria for excellence and the best practices in achieving excellence. Government agencies, religious organizations, trade and professional associations and other nonprofit organizations will benefit greatly from competing for Baldrige Awards."
"In the spirit of recognizing and inspiring organizations to higher quality standards, we should include nonprofits in the prestigious Baldrige Award. I am honored that two of the manufacturing recipients - Medrad, Inc., a leading provider of medical imaging, and Westinghouse Electric Corporation Commercial Nuclear Fuel Division, the first manufacturing recipient of the award - are headquartered in Pennsylvania's Fourth District," added Rep. Hart.
"The extension of the Baldrige award to nonprofits will enhance quality management in these types of organizations by injecting the spirit of friendly competition into the community. I am certain that we will see some impressive award recipients in the nonprofit category in the years to come, and they will do their part in spreading the word on the value and importance of quality management to their peers," said Chairman Sherwood Boehlert (R-NY).
Kenneth E. Case, President of the American Society for Quality, stated, "This is a great day for the not-for-profit sector in America. Now that the Baldrige expansion provisions have been reported out of the House Science Committee, I feel confident that the bill will soon pass in the U.S. House and Senate. Then this sector will at last be able to enjoy the many benefits offered by the Baldrige Award program. Many organizations have worked to make this happen. We're grateful to Chairman Boehlert and Chairman Ehlers for moving the bill through the committee and to Reps. Miller and Hart for introducing the legislation."
Rep. Joseph Knollenberg (R-MI)—member of the House Appropriations Committee. Kelly Hoskin, legislative associate. Meeting was to inform Ms. Hoskin of the pending mark up and subsequent introduction of the Baldrige expansion legislation and to seek Rep. Knollenberg’s support. Specifically, we were interested in having the Congressman put the funding in his budget. Some $1.5 million is expected to be required to fund the new category. Ms. Hoskin was very supportive and indicated she would work with the Congressman on behalf of the expansion.
Thomas A. Lindsley, National Center for Educational Accountability—Mr. Lindsley was formerly with the National Association of Manufacturers and is acquainted with ASQ and Koalaty Kid. The meeting was to explore any possible linkages between the two organizations. Mr. Lindsley indicated that his organization has a working relationship with the Counsel of Chief State School Officers, a group with which ASQ is attempting to work. Mr. Lindsley said his major effort is “Just For the Kids” which is accumulating achievement data to use for school improvement. In particular, the group, in association with the University of Texas—Austin, is looking at improvement with the disadvantaged students. He indicated that population is doing well and his organization is interested in determining what these particular school s are doing to bring about the improvement. He said Standard & Poors will be positing school achievement data, not best practices, to use in benchmarking. The Department of Education is creating a central web site, schoolresults.org that will have all data and best practices. At present, five states are live—Delaware, Pennsylvania, Washington, Florida, Virginia, and Minnesota. The plan is to have all 50 states on the site by summer.
Rep. F. Allen Boyd, Jr. (D-FL)—member of the House Appropriations Committee. Jason Quaranto, legislative director. Meeting was to inform Mr. Quaranto of the upcoming mark up and the reason for the expansion of the Baldrige. Additionally, we sought the support of the Congressman in passing the legislation and in appropriating the necessary funds to move the category forward. Mr. Quaranto was very supportive of the effort and assured us of the Congressman’s support.
Rep. Brad Miller (D-NC)—sponsor of the Baldrige expansion legislation. Bryan Mitchell, legislative aide, and Mark Harkins, chief of staff. Meeting was held to review remarks that Rep. Miller would be making at the mark up. ASQ provided talking points and success stories from Congressman Miller’s home state. Conversation with Mr. Mitchell also dealt with appropriations for the new category.
Because of the closing of the Senate side of the Capitol due to the ricin incursion, and an ice storm which caused early closings, the remainder of the meetings were postponed until the next visit which is scheduled for March 8-9.
Return to top