LCI Recognizes Iris Tommelein with Prestigious Pioneer Award

LCI Recognizes Iris Tommelein with Prestigious Pioneer Award

(Arlington, Virginia) — Lean Construction Institute (LCI) today announced that its board of directors has voted unanimously to award its highest annual recognition, the Pioneer Award, to Iris Tommelein. The award recognizes an individual or organization that has moved the design and construction industry forward in embracing and implementing Lean tools and techniques on capital projects.

A founding board member of LCI, Tommelein has given significant time and energy to implementing lean construction and design principles in key projects for contractors, designers and owner organizations. “Iris has played a pioneering and foundational role in supply chain and materials management, mistake-proofing and Choosing by Advantages, a groundbreaking decision-making system used by the Lean community,” said Will Lichtig, chairman of the board.

In her role as Professor of Engineering and Project Management at University of California-Berkeley, Tommelein has demonstrated her commitment to educating and encouraging others to utilize Lean on projects. Much of her influence is through students who are now Lean champions in their respective academic and industry careers, including:

  • Lauri Merikallio, who spearheaded the development of LCI Finland;
  • Jan Elfving, now head of Skanska’s Nordic Procurement Unit;
  • Cynthia Tsao, who has performed significant work in Lean education and methods for work structuring;
  • Paz Arroyo, who brought Choosing by Advantages into the construction management limelight; and
  • Colin Milberg, who has performed groundbreaking work in dimensional tolerances for concrete structures and is now a Lean consultant.

In addition to assisting more than 40 PhD students through dissertations on Lean Construction, Tommelein was the 2014 recipient of the University’s premiere academic honor for construction management faculty, the Peurifoy Award.

“Iris has long been one of our community’s strongest advocates, and gives an incredible amount of time to educating the industry on Lean practices,” said Dan Heinemeier, executive director. Tommelein is a frequent presenter at LCI workshops and events and plays a leading role in the International Group for Lean Construction (IGLC). In addition to maintaining a website dedicated to the Lean practice of mistake-proofing, she has developed a number of publications for the Lean community, including a comprehensive glossary of Lean Constructions terms and Last PlannerĀ® workbooks for LCI.

LCI will present Tommelein with the Pioneer Award at its 17th Annual Congress, to be held October 12-16, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts. The event, LCI’s largest of the year, brings together the Lean construction and design community for learning and networking.