Jim Woolen, head of Ferris State University’s Accountancy, Finance and Information Systems department, has been appointed to the Board of Examiners for the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award for the fourth consecutive year.
The award, created in 1987, is the nation’s highest recognition for organizational performance excellence through innovation and improvement. The board consists of about 500 leading experts selected from industry, professional and trade organizations, education and health care organizations, and government. Woolen will be responsible for reviewing and evaluating applications submitted for the award.
Woolen was appointed by Patrick Gallagher, deputy director of the U.S. Commerce Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology. He has served as an examiner since 2009, and in 2011 participated in an eight-day team site visit to review an applicant.
“I am both honored and humbled to be a member of the Board of Examiners for the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award,” Woolen said. “I am humbled by how long it takes to learn and internalize the criteria for performance excellence in order to become a more productive reviewer. I am also in awe of the level of achievement for a large portion of the examiners (CEOs, MDs, VPs, presidents, etc.).
As a former IT professional who employed quality-control processes during his career, the Baldrige criteria fit naturally, Woolen said.
“As the accreditation co-champion for Ferris’ College of Business, participating as a Baldrige Examiner helped me be more successful with implementing professional accreditation standards in the COB that are Baldrige-based,” he said. “While being an examiner for the Baldrige Award means that you will dedicate 75 to 100 hours of work just to evaluate an applicant each year, it is a highly-rewarding effort that hopefully provides value-added feedback to an applicant for future improvement efforts.”
Also this year, Woolen was appointed as an examiner for the Michigan Quality Council, the state version of Baldrige.
The Baldrige Award may be given annually in six categories: manufacturing, service, small business, education, health care and nonprofit. Awards have been presented to 90 organizations, including the following 2011 recipients: Concordia Publishing in St. Louis, Mo. (nonprofit); Henry Ford Health System in Detroit (health care); Schneck Medical Center in Seymour, Ind. (health care); and Southcentral Foundation in Anchorage, Alaska (health care).
As a member of the Certification Council for the Institute for Certification of Computer Professionals, Woolen helps design and update national certification exams for computer professionals.
Woolen’s research interests include computer ethics, employee motivation, teaching methodologies for computer courses, and management and societal impacts of technology. During his 34 years of experience in the information technology field, Woolen has served in industry leadership positions and applications development positions. He has taught traditional classroom courses in programming languages, introduction to information technology for non-Computer Information Systems majors and computer concepts. He also has taught online courses in project management.
Woolen earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Georgia State University, a master’s degree Business Administration from Savannah State University (Ga.) and a doctorate in Business Administration from Nova Southeastern University (Fla.).