Staff Profiles



Lean Continuous Improvement & TWI Team

Hank Czarnecki serves as Acting Director of Auburn Technical Assistance Center (ATAC). He also serves as Auburn’s project manager for Lean manufacturing activities. Hank has more than 20 years experience facilitating continuous process improvement (kaizen) events and is a NIST Qualified Lean Manufacturing Trainer.

  • Lean Manufacturing Engineer
  • Senior Toyota Kata Coach
  • Certified Training Within Industry Instructor
  • Association for Manufacturing Excellence President, S.E. Region 2009-2010
  • B.S. in Industrial Engineering, University of Pittsburgh
  • Master Industrial Engineering, Auburn University

CONTACT:; 1.334.844.3838; 1.334.524.2103 (cell)

Hank Czarnecki

David Hicks is a Licensed Professional Engineer with more than 30 years of experience in manufacturing, quality & statistics, training, test engineering, plant management, and research & development. As an Auburn University Outreach Faculty member, David assists organizational leaders in strategic planning, improvement implementation, team member coaching & development, and creating intentional cultures. His clients include automotive manufacturing, hospitals, nursing homes, light and heavy manufacturing, marketing, transactional businesses, and service organizations, in the USA, Japan, and China.

  • SME/AME Bronze Certified Lean Manufacturing
  • Certified Training Within Industry Instructor
  • Senior Member of the American Society for Quality
  • B.S. in Mechanical Engineering, Tennessee State University
  • M.S. in Engineering, University of Alabama Huntsville

CONTACT:; 1.256.565.4020

David Hicks

Rick Battye serves as a Lean Leader for Auburn Technical Assistance Center. Rick has more than 25 years’ experience in Lean coaching, leadership, strategy deployment, project management, and teaching Lean. Rick's background is in the automotive, power plant, and healthcare industries. Rick currently trains and coaches healthcare and manufacturing organizations on their lean journey by helping them develop a clear vision as well as cultivate problem solvers from leadership to team members. In addition to working in the U.S., Rick also has experience in international management in China, Japan and Mexico.

  • SME/AME Bronze Certified Lean Manufacturing
  • Everything DiSC Certified Trainer – DiSC Assessment
  • Participating member of AME, SME and ASQ
  • Trained Six Sigma Green Belt
  • B.S. degree in Industrial Engineering, University of Wisconsin-Platteville

CONTACT:; 1.334.844.3883; 1.334.444.0983 (cell)

Rick Battye

Tai Boos, M.B.A., is a Management Scientist within the Auburn Technical Assistance Center. Her responsibilities include client development, marketing, coaching and training. As an Auburn University Outreach Faculty member, she also plays a role in teaching portions of undergraduate courses in the Harbert College of Business.

Tai is the program director for our annual Bank Directors’ College at Auburn University. She has a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Marketing and Communication from UAB in Birmingham, AL, and Master’s of Business Administration from the University of West Georgia. Tai’s career has spanned over 17 years and has focused primarily in the Wire & Cable Manufacturing industry as well as Telecommunications. Her background covers all disciplines within Human Resources, Sales, Marketing, Training and Executive Coaching.

CONTACT:; 1.334.844.3890

Tai Boos

Six Sigma & Quality Team

Mark Clark, Ph.D., is an award-winning member of the AU College of Business Faculty for his teaching in the MBA program. Mark holds a dual appointment with ATAC and the Department of Management. He is a Master Black Belt and is a Six Sigma Green and Black Belt instructor.
Mark has a Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering and specializes in the area of production and operations management. He spent eight years in the pulp and paper industry, and served as a process engineer for approximately three years before joining the management team at one of the International Paper production facilities. Dr. Clark has co-authored numerous articles accepted in Annals of Operations Research and Forest Science.

CONTACT:; 1.334.844.3889

Mark Clark

Amit Mitra, PhD., is a professor in the College of Business. He holds bachelors and masters degrees in Mechanical Engineering, a post-graduate diploma in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research, and a Ph.D. in Management Science from Clemson University. Dr. Mitra has been involved in quality assurance and continuous quality improvement activities through teaching, research, executive and continuing education, and consulting. He is the author of the book, Fundamentals of Quality Control and Improvement, Second Edition, Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, New Jersey, 1998, a nationally and internationally used textbook. The book, to be used in this course, has been adopted at institutions such as MIT, Harvard, Stanford, University of California at Berkeley and the University of Southern California, among many others. He has conducted numerous short courses for professionals in such areas as Total Quality Management, Quality Assurance, and Statistical Process Control. Dr. Mitra has assisted with the implementation of statistical process control in numerous companies.

CONTACT:; 1.344.844.4833

Amit Mitra

Chuck McPherson, PhD., serves as quality management and human performance support specialist. He has over 33 years of experience in developing and implementing quality management systems in the manufacturing and service sectors. His primary job focus is program evaluation and the design, development, and implementation of management systems, training programs, and human performance support systems for the realization of products and services in education, business, and industry. He specializes in design, development, and implementation of quality management systems for ISO 9001, IATF-16949 for Automotive, SAE AS9100 and 9110 for aerospace, FAA-Parts Manufacturer Approval (Title 14 CFR, Section 21.303), and FAA approved domestic repair stations (14 CFR, Part 145, Subpart B). As a program evaluator, Chuck’s practice conforms primarily to the Program Evaluation Standards authored by the Joint Committee on Standards for Educational Evaluation. His instructional design work for training interventions and training programs is guided by ISO 29990. He is a member of the Omicron Zeta Chapter of Kappa Delta Pi (KDP) International Honor Society in Education and the Golden Key International Honour Society.

CONTACT:; 1.251.422.5794

Chuck Mcpherson

John Hayes serves as Quality Specialist and provides instruction and training material development in a variety of product quality and production areas, including Mechanical Print Reading and Certified Quality Technician (CQT). He holds a Bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering from Auburn University. His areas of interest are improving quality, products, processes and operations. John has more than 40 years of experience with manufacturing companies in project and process engineering, and as Plant Manager and Quality Director. John is a member of the ASME.

CONTACT:; 1.334.844.3858

John Hayes

Jim Percy principal of Percy Associates, Inc., is an experienced leader with over 29 years of accomplishments in manufacturing, service, and research roles.Through Percy Associates, Inc., he offers business research and developmental services that lead to greater client success, increased customer satisfaction, improved profits, and more effective and spirited employees

  • Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering from the University of Illinois
  • Masters of Science in Chemical Engineering from the University of Washington
  • Member of ASQ, and The American Institute of Chemical Engineers
  • Certified Manager of Quality/Organizational Excellence
  • Lead examiner and trainer for the Baldrige-based Alabama Excellence Award

CONTACT:; 251-533-0007 (cell)

Jim Percy