Garry Elkington joined the University of Kentucky Lean Systems Program in 2018 after retiring from Toyota Motor Manufacturing Indiana (TMMI). Garry’s 38 years of manufacturing experience include assignments in Australia, North America, and Japan.
Garry began his career with Toyota Motor Corporation Australia (TMCA) as a team member in the Power Train operation, which included aluminum casting, machining, and engine assembly. He experienced production supervision, management, maintenance lead, and vehicle model change project engineering, eventually becoming the Plant General Manager.
In 2007, Garry transferred to Toyota North America, holding a position at the Toyota Motor Manufacturing Indiana facility (TMMI) to lead the company’s Supplier Development team, supporting the Midwest Automotive Supplier network. The focus was the improvement of quality and process systems and root cause problem solving. In addition to supplier performance support Garry shared both knowledge and expertise as Toyota’s North American TPS liaison with Kentucky’s automotive supplier network, including the Bluegrass Automotive Manufacturing Association (BAMA).
Joining TMMI’s TPS group in 2012, Garry shifted emphasis to the plant level-by-level training and development requirements for the principles and practical application of TPS. The program included new inductees, front line supervision and management.
During the next six years, Garry had the opportunity to learn from and be mentored by TPS Masters, with assignments in North America and two years with the Global TPS division at Toyota Motor Corporation. This particular work focused on both Toyota plant and Japanese supplier operational improvements in the Toyota City area of Japan. Upon return to North America and TMMI this knowledge and experience was transferred and utilized to develop a new core of mentors and trainers.
He became a member of the Lean Systems Program at the UK College of Engineering in 2017 to further the mission of sharing TPS knowledge with academic students and the North American workforce.