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Armand Feigenbaum

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Armand Feigenbaum Obituary
Dr. Armand V. Feigenbaum

1920-2014 Dr. Armand V. Feigenbaum, 94, died Thursday, November 13, 2014, at Berkshire Place, Pittsfield. He was born in New York City on April 6, 1920, son of S. Frederick and Hilda Vallin Feigenbaum. Dr. Armand V. Feigenbaum, was the developer of the "Total Quality Control" concept, and President and CEO of General Systems Company, which he founded in 1968 with his brother Dr. Donald S. Feigenbaum, a former GE engineer and manager. In 2008, Dr. Feigenbaum was presented with the National Medal of Technology and Innovation by President Bush at a ceremony at the East Wing of the White House. The National Medal is the highest honor for technological achievement bestowed on America's leading innovators. From 1937-1968, Dr. Feigenbaum grew from an entry-level pre-college job to be the hands-on manager of quality as the Company-wide Manager of Manufacturing Operations and Quality Control at the General Electric Company (1958-68) in New York City. He developed the "Total Quality Control" concept while concurrently employed at GE in 1946. In 1951, while a doctoral student at MIT, Dr. Feigenbaum wrote the first edition of his book Total Quality Control. He established the principles of Total Quality Management ("TQM"), the approach to quality and profitability that profoundly influenced management strategy and productivity in the competition for world markets in the United States, Europe, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East. He wrote, "Total quality control is an effective system for integrating the quality development, quality maintenance, and quality improvement efforts of the various groups in an organization so as to enable production and service at the most economical levels which allow full customer satisfaction." Armand V. Feigenbaum is also known for his concept of the "hidden plant." That is - in every factory a certain proportion of its capacity is wasted through not getting it right the first time. Dr. Feigenbaum quoted a figure of up to 40% of the capacity of the plant being wasted. The several editions of Total Quality Control have been published in more than twenty languages including French, German, Japanese, Chinese, Spanish and Russian, and were widely used throughout the world as a foundation for management practice. Dr. Feigenbaum's establishment of General Systems with his brother Donald, made it possible for him to further refine TQM and widely bring to many companies and organizations the benefits of the total quality and management practices he had developed. This brought demonstrable economic, environmental and social business benefits to these companies and their customers, and correspondingly to America's economy. He co-authored The Power of Management Capital with his brother, setting a new direction for innovation in management in the twenty first century not only in industry but also in health care, education, public administration and technology. The book has been translated into Japanese, Chinese, Brazilian Portuguese, Arabic, in several other languages and an edition in India. Dr. Feigenbaum was president of the American Society for Quality (ASQ) and the International Academy for Quality (IAQ). He is well known, highly visible, revered worldwide, and his name in synonymous with "Total Quality." He is considered one of the World's "Gurus of Quality." Dr. Feigenbaum and his brother established the Feigenbaum Foundation in 1988 to which they have left the bulk of their assets. Within the past year, the Feigenbaum Foundation pledged $5,000,000 to MCLA and $5,000,000 to the Colonial Theatre, and awarded grants to over thirty organizations. In 2008, Armand and Donald established the Feigenbaum Hall of Innovation at the Berkshire Museum, which celebrates the leadership of Berkshire-based global innovators and the principles through which they brought leadership. Annually, Armand and Donald Feigenbaum would award the $5,000 Feigenbaum Scholarship for Science and Technology to a local high school senior. They sponsored and recently endowed the annual Hilda Vallin Feigenbaum Lecture at the Temple Anshe Amunim in honor of their mother. Dr. Feigenbaum graduated from Union College which honored Armand and Donald for their generosity by naming the school's administration building after them. He obtained a Master's Degree and PHD at MIT's Sloan School of Management. He received honorary doctorate degrees from Union College, University of Massachusetts and MCLA. The Armand V. Feigenbaum Lifetime Achievement Medal was established by the Asia Pacific Quality Organization (APQO) and the Walter L. Hurd Foundation. The first award was presented on Nov. 1, 2011, to Yuanzhang Liu, Ph.D., a research professor of the Academy of Math and System Sciences, Shanghai, China. Liu received this medal in recognition of his promotion of total quality management (TQM) in China for more than 50 years during which time he accomplished many firsts. In 1988, he was appointed by the Secretary of Commerce in Washington, D.C. to the first Board of Overseers of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award Program and in Paris, he was awarded the Medaille G. Borel by France, the first American to be so honored, in recognition of his international leadership of quality as well as his contributions to France. He was elected to the National Academy of Engineering of the United States. He received the National Institute for Engineering Management & Systems' Distinguished Service Award for lifetime contributions to the field of management and the Edwards Medal of the American Society for Quality for "outstanding leadership in the field of quality control. He was the founding Chairman of the Board of the International Academy for Quality, the worldwide quality body and served two terms as President of the American Society for Quality and one term as Chairman of its Board of Directors. Past-Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Council for International Progress in Management, the United States affiliate of C.I.O.S., the international general management body. Member of the Advisory Group of the U.S. Army, and twice served as general chairman of a system-wide evaluation of the quality assurance activities of the U.S. Army. National Security Industrial Association Award of Merit for "true leadership in the defense of the nation. Honorary Member of the American Society for Quality, that body's highest honor. Founders Medal by Union College for his "distinguished career in management and engineering." First recipient of the Lancaster Award of the American Society for Quality, for his "leadership of the international development of quality." 1993, Fellow of the World Academy of Productivity Science, and awarded the Distinguished Leadership Award by the Quality & Productivity Management Association 1996, he was the first recipient of the Ishikawa/Harrington Medal by the Asia-Pacific Quality Organization for "outstanding leadership in management excellence in the Asia-Pacific region." 1997, the Quebec Society for Quality established the Feigenbaum Medal, which recognizes leadership as a source of quality progress in Quebec society. 1998, designated Honorary Member of FUNDECE (Fundacion Empresaria Para La Calidad y La Excelencia). 1998, the American Society for Quality established the Feigenbaum Medal to be granted annually for excellence in performance. 2006, awarded the Six Sigma Grand Master Medal by the Walter L. Hurd Foundation. 1992, Governor of Massachusetts established the Armand V. Feigenbaum Massachusetts Quality Award to annually recognize the business organizations displaying the strongest competitive leadership. 2001, presented with a Proclamation by the Governor or Massachusetts on the Anniversary of his book Total Quality Control. 1994, Singapore's Ngee Ann Polytechnic inaugurated the annual Dr. A.V. Feigenbaum Gold Medal Award for the outstanding Quality Assurance Engineering graduate. 2005, The Feigenbaum Leadership Excellence Award was established in Dubai, United Arab Emirates and is annually awarded there. [1] RCS, Regulatory Compliance Services description published online. FUNERAL NOTICE: Services will be Sunday, November 16, 2014 at 1:30 p.m. at Temple Anshe Amunim, 26 Broad St,, Pittsfield, MA., with Rabbi Joshua L. Breindel, Spiritual Leader officiating. There will be no calling hours. FLYNN & DAGNOLI-BENCIVENGA FUNERAL HOME, 5 Elm St., Pittsfield, MA 01201 is in charge of arrangements. Please visit www.flynndagnolifuneralhomes.com


Published in The Berkshire Eagle on Nov. 15, 2014
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