Advisory Board


Leading global experts in Operational Excellence, Transformation, Performance Excellence, Continuous Improvement, BPM, Lean Six Sigma and Quality

The OPEX Week: Business Transformation World Summit advisory board consisted of key thinkers and thought leaders in the Operational Excellence space. These seasoned industry experts guided the topics on the OPEX Week agenda in addition to frequently contributing content and media. These industry leaders were selected due to the calibre of their work within their respective areas of expertise.

The PEX Week Advisory board members included:

Leslie Behnke
Vice President, Process Improvement and Service Quality, Operations and Technology
TD Canada Trust, TD Bank Group

Atul Bhatt ph.D
VP. Principle Systems Architect Enterprise Solutions Architecture
Wells Fargo

Vince Pierce
Strategy and Business Excellence Ryan

Rick Hepp
Executive Director, Operational Excellence
Bristol-Myers Squib

Roop Singh
Partner and Principle Consultant
Intuit Factory

Dennis Narlock
Continuous Improvement Leader
Catalent Pharma Solutions

Sheila Monteny
Assistant Vice President
State Farm *

Erika Westbay
Program Director of BPM
The Nature Conservancy

Ker Ling Yew
Vice President, Center of Operational Excellence

Sanjay Gupta
Director, Operational Excellence

About our Advisors

Leslie Behnke

As Vice President of Process Improvement and Service Quality for TD Bank Group, Leslie is responsible for driving continuous process improvement through the deployment of Lean Six Sigma practices across a portfolio of business units.

Prior to joining TD in August 2008 Leslie attended the Université de Bordeaux, France and graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with Bachelor of Arts degrees in Information Science and French. She received her Lean Six Sigma accreditations at Motorola University, Schaumburg, Illinois.

Leslie has been a featured speaker and contributor to numerous Global Business Excellence forums including the American Society for Quality, The Conference Board, World Conference Business Forums, Federated Press – Women in Leadership and Process Excellence Network. Leslie is the recipient of an ASQ Quality Executive of the Year Award, The Connecticut Quality Executive of the Year, The Leading Enterprise Award in Quality from the People’s Republic of China, the Motorola CEO Quality award and CEO Volunteer of the Year award.

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Atul Bhatt

As a Senior Architect in the Enterprise Architecture group at Wells Fargo, Atul Bhatt is responsible for all aspects of developing and promoting the use of architecture strategies, solutions, standards, and practices across the enterprise.

Dr. Bhatt has over 35 years of systems architecture, technology planning & integration, and business strategy experience in computers and communications across various industries. He has held senior-level engineering, consulting, and management positions at Sperry Univac (now Unisys), at Becton Dickinson (a global medical technology company), and at several independent consulting companies. He has been directly responsible for enterprise architecture, e-Business development, IT strategic planning, development and enterprise-wide dispersion of emerging technologies, and architecture definition of new generation computers.

Dr. Bhatt holds a B.Tech. (Honors) degree in electronics and electrical communications engineering from IIT Kharagpur (India), and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in electrical engineering, computer science, and operations research from the University of Minnesota. He has published numerous research papers, and presented at conferences in the U.S., Canada, Japan, Europe, and Puerto Rico.

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Vince Pierce

Vince was Senior Vice President, Global Business Transformation with Office Depot for three years prior to joining Ryan (a global tax services company) as Senior Vice President, Strategy and Business Excellence in early 2014.

Vince is now approaching 25 years of delivering sustained shareholder value through Strategy Deployment, Operational Excellence, Global Shared Services, and Acquisition Integration. He has extensive experience of leading process-centric enterprise transformation while establishing a culture of continuous improvement as a key sustaining element.

Valued for his change leadership expertise, Vince has led complex initiatives, designing and managing global service operations, and turning around under-performing businesses across several industries.

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Rick Hepp

Experiences: 12 Years – Product & Process Technology Leadership experience in Chemical and Plastics Industry (Aldrich Chemicals, General Electric Plastics); 8 Years Global Sourcing/Supply Chain Management (GE Plastics); 19 Years as Six Sigma Quality Leader in Plastics, Insurance, Health Care Industry (GE Plastics, -GE Financial Assurance, and United Health Group) with the last 10 years in BioTech (Drug & Device … Nektar Therapeutics, Amylin Pharmaceuticals, and Bristol-Myers Squibb).

Education: Ph.D.-Organic Chemistry; B.A. in Chemistry/Zoology/Computer Science; Lean/Six Sigma Quality…Certified MBB, Trainer & Facilitator; Change Management Leader… Certified in GE CAP® & Facilitation; Quality Training and Certification … Lean, DMAIC, DMADOV, and Change Management; Certified “Train the Trainer”.

Current Role: Head of Operational Excellence Bristol Myers Squibb Global Manufacturing & Supply (GMS) (01/2013 to present) Leading a Global OpEx Network team across Operations, Quality, Supply Chain and Enabling functions to deliver operating efficiencies, capacity, regulatory/compliance performance, and overall cost savings of over $125M in the first 2 years with >$150M targeted for

2015; positioned a culture change and shift in how GMS operates on a Journey to Benchmark capabilities and value by making OpEx “the way we work” through the methodologies, tools & techniques of Lean Six Sigma and Change Management; built a portfolio approach to Continuous Improvement and aligned the OpEx network teams to focus on company goals of Speed to Patient, External Focus on Growth, a People Strategy of empowerment, engagement, and enrichment.

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Roop Singh

Roop is a business transformation leader with 14 years of experience driving change at the intersection of business and technology. He speaks at conferences and conducts workshops about aligning strategy and operations through process excellence, driving change and innovation.

He also served as an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Computer Information Systems(CIS) at J Mack Robinson College of Business, GSU. He holds Object Management Group’s Certification in Business Process Management (Business Advanced). He was elected on the Board of Directors of the Georgia Indo-American Chamber of Commerce (GIACC) in 2008-2010 and also served as the co-chair of its Trade committee. He was also invited to be on the TiE Atlanta’s Executive Team for 2010-2011, was instrumental in establishing and leading a TMT (Telecom, Media and Technologies) Special Interest Group. He was appointed on the Process Excellence Network’s (PEX) Advisory Board in 2016.

Roop has published in various conferences and journals on combining approaches in Data Management, AI, and Ontology Management & Semantics.

Roop holds a M.S. degree in Computer Information Systems from the J Mack Robinson College of Business and a B.E. degree in Computer Science & Computer Engineering from Mysore University, India. He is also a certified hypnotist and was inducted in the National Guild of Hypnotists, in April 2016.

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Dennis Narlock

Dennis Narlock is the Continuous Improvement Leader for Catalent Pharma Solutions in Middleton, Wisconsin. He is an ASQ certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt and a Theory of Constraints Jonah with more than six years of experience in continuous process improvement. He has held positions as a Black Belt and Deployment director within the U.S. Navy where he served for 24 years prior to transitioning to the private sector. He earned a Master of Science degree in Global Leadership from the University of San Diego. His work with the Process Excellence group at IQPC has been recognized with project awards in the Best New Start-up and Innovation categories; in addition he has been a conference presenter and judge. Dennis can be reached at

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Sheila Monteny

Sheila Montney has held a variety of positions with State Farm Insurance Companies since 1985 in seven locations across the United States. Sheila led the start-up of the lean journey for State Farm’s Life/Health/Mutual Funds product lines which began in 2006.

She currently leads Life/Health/Mutual Funds Centralized Operations, and is based at State Farm’s corporate headquarters in Bloomington, Illinois.

Centralized Operations provides the “how to” for State Farm’s Life, Health & Mutual Funds’ product lines. Centralized Operations departments include Strategic Planning, Communications, Operations Risk Management, Procedures, Operations Excellence, Program & Project Management, Data Analytics & Quality, and Development & Knowledge Management. Centralized Operations associates are located at State Farm’s Bloomington, Illinois corporate headquarters, with field staff in Ohio, Texas, Colorado, and Illinois.

In 2012, State Farm Life was recognized by the Shingo Prize, receiving the Bronze Medallion. State Farm Life was the first financial services organization to be recognized by the Shingo Institute for their operations excellence culture and results.

Sheila holds a Bachelor’s Degree in English from the University of North Texas in Denton, and a Master’s Degree in Government from Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She has earned the Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter designation (The Institutes), Chartered Financial Consultant (The American College), and LIMRA Leadership Institute Fellow. She has served as a speaker and benchmarking research partner for various process excellence organizations including CEB – Operations Leadership Council, The Shingo Institute, SAA & Company’s Process Roundtable, and Hammer & Company’s Phoenix Research Consortium. Sheila was named to the Shingo Institute’s Executive Advisory Board in 2015. She also serves as a PEX Week Advisory Board member for IQPC – PEX.

Sheila is married to Wayne Montney, Associate General Counsel with State Farm Corporate Law. They have one son, Jared, age 13. The Montneys live in Bloomington, Illinois.

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Yew Ker Ling

Yew Ker Ling is currently the VP (COE) of SingTel Group. COE is responsible for innovating, incubating and inculcating business best practices to enable and empower the lines of business to deliver sustainable values, operational excellence and distinctive Customer Experience. These business practices include Lean Six Sigma, Business Process Management, Customer Experience and eBusiness. In 2011, Ker Ling led the team in winning the world-class IQPC Process Excellence Award for the Best Start Up Program “Where EAGLE dares” in the United States; as well as the Asian IQPC Process Excellence Award (Service Sector) for Lean Six Sigma project.

Prior to this appointment in 2009, Ker Ling was the CEO of SingTel Global Offices (SGOs) where she was responsible for the P&Ls and operations of SGOs since 2007. SGOs provide SingTel’s global business customers with a single point of contact in 38 cities in 19 countries and territories across Asia Pacific, Europe, Middle East and the United States.

Ker Ling has more than 25 years of experience in IT and Telecommunications industry. She began her career with NCS Pte Ltd in 1984. Since then, she has held various leadership positions including Project Leader, Principal Consultant, Chief Marketing Officer and Chief Strategy Officer of NCS. She holds a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Business Administration from the National University of Singapore. She received the Reginald Quahe Medal (best MBA graduate) from the university in 1994. She is currently pursuing her PhD in one of the Go8 in Australia. Ker Ling is also a certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt awarded by the Australian Graduate School of Management (AGSM).

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Erika Westbay

Erika Westbay is the Director of the Performance Improvement Group at the world’s leading conservation organization, The Nature Conservancy. She and the team’s focus is on strengthening the organization in ways that ensure it is continuously reaching its full potential – both globally and sustainably – so that the Conservancy can further its ability to achieve its Mission to conserve the lands and waters on which all life depends. The group is a key resource for bringing to life the executive priority of ensuring the Conservancy is a more fun, nimble and effective workplace.
Reporting into the Performance Improvement Group are: The Business Process Management Program, which is dedicated to treating core organizational processes as Mission-critical assets that significantly and continuously contribute to the improvement of conservation outcomes, and, The Business Information & Analytics Program, which is driven by a passion for the data and environment and therefore strives to empower decision-makers by providing objective and impactful analysis to bring about transformational change.

The process excellence services provided by this team range from equipping and empowering staff members to strengthen and continuously improve all that they touch, to the provision of process excellence practitioner expertise on executive priorities, provision of ad-hoc consultation services, business architecture knowledge and advancement, contribution of PEX and CPI skills and mindset via a learning organization service line, as well as managing an organizationally-accessible service for assistance across decentralized programs and business units.

Erika is a long-standing Certified Process Professional, is Six Sigma LDSS and Green Belt certified, and is a certified Project Management Professional with a relentless passion for excellence, for networking with peers within and beyond her industry and organization, and, for helping to advance the ever-changing field of PEX expertise and innovation.

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Sanjay Gupta

Sanjay is an accomplished leader, known for delivering results. Sanjay has experience with four extremely successful Lean Six Sigma (LSS) deployments, along with 15 years of progressive responsibility and certification as a Master Black Belt. Adept at implementing or extending a Operational Excellence program (COE), Lean Manufacturing, Kaizen, relationship building, communication, and team leadership.

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