Our Board 2018-10-04T13:35:29+00:00

SVAM Center of Excellence Board of Directors

Jeff Dunnack,
Chairman
Plant Manager, Somic America, Inc.

Jeff is currently Plant Manager at Somic America, Inc. located in Wytheville, VA. Within his...

current role, Jeff is responsible for all aspects of the company’s day to day business operations that include but are not limited to Manufacturing, Quality, Maintenance, Production Control and Human Resources.

Somic America is one of the largest suppliers of suspension and steering components in North America providing components to Toyota, Honda, Subaru, Mitsubishi and General Motors.

Previous to his current role, Jeff started up the Production Control and Quality Assurance Departments in the Wytheville facility. He then moved on to become the Assistant QA Manager then the Manufacturing Manager. Within these roles, Jeff was able to learn most every aspect of the plant and how they should function together as a team.

Jeff has now been working within the automotive world for 25 years. These opportunities gave Jeff a unique perspective on the Somic America world that prepared him for his current role.

Jeff graduated in 1987 from Rocky Gap High School then spent four total years serving his country in the U.S. Army. During this time, he traveled the world to include Egypt and Israel. Jeff has studied at Wytheville Community College and has attained Six Sigma Green Belt Certification Status. Jeff currently resides in Bastian, Virginia with his wife Anita and two children Tiffany and Anthony.

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Rick Peak,
Vice Chairman
Logistics/Materials Manager, Tempur Production
Rick Peak began his career immediately after high school with Masco Corporation in Duffield, Virginia in 1979. A native of Scott County, ...

he has continued to spend most of his working life employed in his indigenous area. He started out as an hourly worker and quickly advanced to a supervisor’s position. He was later promoted to Superintendent and then to Production Manager. At a young age, Rick proved that he was a dedicated, loyal, and efficient manager. After working at Masco for over 20 years, the upper management team selected Rick to travel with them to Lafollette, Tennessee to oversee the revamping of the production from Masco to Thermador, owned later by BSH Home Appliance Industries. Rick was instrumental as a Production Manager in training Masco’s employees to build high-end household appliances. From operating a brake press to attending training classes himself, he contributed greatly to the smooth transition of Masco to Thermador. Because he wanted to continue residing in Scott County, Rick dedicated himself to a four-hour drive each day, while working eight to 12 hours making sure that each shift and each employee was trained and that the plant was operating smoothly and efficiently. In 2001, Rick was offered the opportunity to assist with the start-up of Tempur Production. He seized his chance to cease the commute and resume working in Scott County. He resigned from Thermador and became one of the first employees of Tempur Production in Duffield. He began working for Tempur in an office at the Pioneer Center while the plant was being built. As the Production Manager, Rick did much more than assist with the developmental stages of the plant. He hired employees, and he ensured that equipment and materials were ready for when Tempur opened its doors to its state of the art facility under 12 acres of formulated foam mattresses. He took the time to get to know each employee personally, and he stayed on the plant floor more often than working from behind a desk. He made sure that the plant was operating smoothly and efficiently each day. Deciding to take the Logistics/Materials Manager position in 2011, Rick oversees the daily forecasts, projections, materials, and shipping. He has continued to excel in this position. He is now involved with numerous conference calls and meetings, but he still circulates on the shop floor to ensure that the plant operates efficiently. Demonstrating his love for and dedication to Tempur Production, he also takes great pride in personally giving tours of the plant. Rick has served as an active member of the SVAM Center of Excellence Board of Directors and is presently serving as Vice Chairman for the SVAM Center of Excellence Board of Directors.

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David Manley,
Secretary
Executive Director, Joint IDA of Wythe County Staff support for Wythe Manufacturing Council;

David Manley has served as the Executive Director of the...

Joint Industrial Development Authority of Wythe County, Virginia since 2014. He is responsible for the economic and industrial development efforts of Wythe County and the towns of Wytheville and Rural Retreat. Under his direction, agency operations are focused on strategic planning and marketing for business retention and attraction. David is also responsible for contributing to downtown revitalization efforts, small business development, and tourism strategy. He is routinely in contact with elected officials regarding the economic development status of the area. Prior to his appointment as Executive Director of the Joint IDA of Wythe County, David was a Co-Founder of the West Wind Farm Vineyard and Winery in Max Meadows, Virginia. He was the General Manager of the vineyard and winery from 2002 to 2014 building the farm winery from inception and construction through planning and daily operation. The establishment is structured as a wholesale, retail, viticulture and event business and has become an industry leader with a strong reputation. West Wind Farm Vineyard and Winery was named “Favorite Tasting Room” and placed in the top three in Virginia in addition to numerous wine competition accolades. David graduated from the University of Virginia- Charlottesville in 1997 with a Bachelor of Arts in Government, and he went on to attend the University of South Carolina in Columbia from 1997 to 1999 studying law as a Juris Doctor Candidate. During this time, he clerked with a boutique litigation firm that focused on gaming law, major tort litigation, statewide grand jury defense, and civil rights litigation. Following his time at the University of South Carolina, he worked as a Contract Analyst for the South Carolina Department of Education from 1999 to 2000 designing and executing a project analyzing interstate textbook pricing. From his work on this project, he developed a litigation plan for the State Superintendent of Schools and agency legal counsel. David then moved to Greensboro, North Carolina and worked as a Station Supervisor for Shuttle America from 2000 to 2001. At Shuttle America, he was responsible for the safe, timely, and legal flight operations of a small commercial carrier at Piedmont Triad International Airport leading a staff of five. He also served as a Federal Aviation Administration liaison, Ground Security Coordinator, and trainer. In 2002, David embarked upon the West Wind Farm venture. In addition to his work as Executive Director of the Joint Industrial Development Authority of Wythe County, David is a Co-Founder and Co-Chairman of Wythe-Bland Young Professionals and Co-Founder and Vice-Chairman of the Virginia Wineries Co-op. He also serves on several economic development councils and associations, and he was previously an executive committee member of the Wytheville-Wythe-Bland Chamber of Commerce as well as a former Chairman of the Wythe County Public Schools Foundation for Excellence. David sits on the Board of Directors for the Southwest Virginia Advanced Manufacturing Center of Excellence.

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Michael Sanders,
Treasurer
CFO, General Engineering

Education: East Tennessee State University – Bachelors of Business Administration (2003) East Tennessee State...

University – Masters of Accounting (2004) Work Experience:Dent K Burk Associates PC (January 2005 – November 2011) – focused primarily on income taxation and retirement plan auditsGeneral Engineering Co. of Virginia (November 2011-present) – Chief Financial OfficerOther: Certified Public Accountant (passed exam in 2005, Licensed in VA and TN)

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Dr. Gene Couch,
President-Virginia Highlands Community College

A native of Southwest Virginia, Dr. Gene C. Couch, Jr. officially became...

the 6th president of Virginia Highlands Community College on July 1, 2014.

Dr. Couch is a graduate of a Virginia Community College. In 1982, he graduated from Southwest Virginia Community College and later earned a bachelor’s degree in Allied Health from North Carolina’s Mars Hill College. Additionally, he holds a master’s and an education specialist degree in Educational Administration – Two Year College from Western Carolina University. He also holds a doctorate degree in Educational Leadership from East Tennessee State University.

He has an extensive career in education, serving more than 29 years in various administrative capacities at Southwestern Community College in Sylva, North Carolina and at Alamance Community College in Burlington, North Carolina, until his return to southwest Virginia.

Dr. Couch and his wife, Judy, have two sons – both of whom are currently enrolled in college. Additional educational information continued on next page.

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Greg Farmer,
Operations Manager, Komatsu

Greg Farmer is the Duffield, Virginia Site Manager for Joy Global, which was acquired by Komatsu...

Mining Corporation in early 2017, and he has also served as the Senior Operational Excellence Core Team Leader for Joy Mining’s Corporate Lean Manufacturing Team since 2008. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering with a Minor in Business Administration from Arkansas State University and has extensive training and experience with lean manufacturing management including Six Sigma and Kaizen. Greg served in the United States Army Infantry from 1984 to 1988 prior to attending Arkansas State University and graduating in 1993.

Greg began his career in the manufacturing industry with General Electric in 1994 as an Area Supervisor. He progressed through various supervisory and leadership roles at G.E. eventually becoming a Production Coordinator before taking a position with Danaher Tool Group in Northwest Arkansas in September 1999. Greg worked for Danaher at the Springdale, Arkansas plant through January 2006 advancing from Production Planner to Pack Manager and then Danaher Business Systems Quality Manager to Sub Plant Manager. At this point, he relocated to the Dallas, Texas area working for Danaher Tool Group, Kingsley Tools in Dallas as Plant Manager. Shortly thereafter he became the Senior Project/Productivity Manager and then Danaher Business Systems Manager at the Dallas location. While with Danaher, Greg was recognized three times with the Danaher Business Systems Hall of Fame award, he was a multiple recipient of Danaher stock grants, and he was recognized by the Danaher Talent Plan.

In October 2008, Greg came on board at Joy Mining as the Senior Operational Excellence Core Team Leader where he has served as a Kaizen mentor, trained Operational Excellence Academies, developed training tools and curricula, and facilitated two Model Plant Transformations. He currently resides in Kingsport, Tennessee while serving as the Site Manager for Joy Global/Komatsu in nearby Duffield, Virginia. Greg sits on the Board of Directors for the Southwest Virginia Advanced Manufacturing Center of Excellence.

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Marty Holliday,
Executive Director, New River/Mount Rogers WDB

Marty Holliday is the Executive Director for the New River/Mount Rogers Workforce Investment Area...

Consortium Board and the New River/Mount Rogers Workforce Development Board (NRMRWDB). She has been with the Boards since 2001. The NewRiver/Mount Rogers Workforce Development Area covers 13 jurisdictions in SWVA and the NRMRWDB is the Regional Convener for the workforce system in that area. As Executive Director, Marty has overall strategic and operational responsibility for New River/Mount Rogers Workforce Development Area's WIOA staff, board projects/programs and expansion and execution of its mission. She monitors and reports on labor market trends, serves as the business and community liaison, and develops special projects and partnerships based on regional need. Marty was instrumental in the development of (and manages) two large regional grants: The Regional Rapid Response project that brought in 1.2 million of State funds that covers 28 jurisdictions in SWVA and the Pathways to the American Dream project that brought is a 6 million America’s Promise grant award covering 33 jurisdictions in SWVA and Southern VA. Marty received her Bachelor of Science in Business/Human Resource Management from Florida Southern College. Her previous work experience consists of regional operations management, corporate training, HR, sales and marketing, and adult education. Marty lives in Floyd, VA with her husband Carter and has two adult children.

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Dr. Keith Perrigan,
Superintendent-Bristol City Schools

Dr. Perrigan has been the Division Superintendent of Bristol, Virginia City Schools since 2017. During this time,...

he has already made a significant impact on the Bristol City Schools system by developing an annual budget, developing a Retirement Incentive Agreement to assist with balancing the budget, and establishing in-house custodial services for the first time in two decades. Dr. Perrigan’s career path and academic preparation prior to his appointment as Bristol City Schools Division Superintendent laid the foundation for the role in which he now serves.

After obtaining a Bachelor of Arts in History and multiple teaching licensures from the University of Virginia- Wise in 1994, Perrigan began his career in education at Abingdon High School in Abingdon, Virginia. There, he was a teacher in the Emotionally Disturbed Program until 2001. While in this teaching position, he completed graduate school at Radford University acquiring a Master of Science in Educational Leadership and Licensure in Administration and Supervision PreK-12 in 2001. This led to his positions as Assistant Principal at John Battle High School in Bristol, Virginia from 2001 to 2003 and at Abingdon High School from 2003 to 2004. From 2004 to 2005, Perrigan served as Interim Principal at Abingdon High School transitioning to Principal at Patrick Henry High School in Glade Spring, Virginia in 2005 through 2014. During his time as Principal at Patrick Henry High School, he attained a Doctor of Education (Ed. D.) in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, Licensed Division Superintendent from Virginia Tech. Also during this time, Patrick Henry High School was recognized multiple times by U.S. News and World Report and Newsweek as one of the top high schools in the United States in addition to many other awards and recognitions.

Dr. Perrigan became the Division Superintendent of Norton City Schools in Norton, Virginia in 2014 where he implemented a number of initiatives to increase available funds, improve school security, and introduce modern technology into the curriculum, thereby winning awards and earning Virginia Department of Education Division Accreditation. While Division Superintendent of Norton City Schools, Dr. Perrigan provided adjunct teaching services for Virginia Tech’s Principal Preparation Master’s Degree Program. He left his position with Norton City Schools in 2017 to assume the role of his current position as Division Superintendent of Bristol City Schools.

Dr. Perrigan has served and continues to serve on various boards, councils, and committees in the region including his position as Chairman for the Southwest Virginia Advanced Manufacturing Center of Excellence (SVAM-CoE) Academic Advisory Council. He is also a member of several civic groups, and he speaks at various local, state, and national events. Dr. Perrigan was listed by The Roanoke Times for Unelected All-Star Recognition in 2017. He also received the Virginia Highlands Community College 2017 Notable Alumni Award and the Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center 2017 Distinguished Alumni Award.

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Keith Thompson,
Retired (Former Dir. of Mfg Technology Ctr)
Affiliate member of SVAM

Retired Executive Director of the Manufacturing Technology Center. As Director, led a staff...

of technical professionals providing Engineering and Management services to manufacturing clients in Southwestern Virginia. Previously, employed as Senior Engineer with Raytheon Company and UNISYS Corp. Work experience in engineering management, product design, manufacturing operations and quality management systems. Graduate of Virginia Highlands Community College (A.A.S.), Virginia Tech (B.S.) and the University of Tennessee (M.S.). Has earned a Lean/Six Sigma Black Belt certification. Former community college adjunct instructor. Currently President and Owner of GKT Properties LLC, Abingdon, VA

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Lisa Greenway,
Environmental Health and Safety Manager, General Dynamics

Lisa Greenway has been an Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) Manager in a manufacturing environment for over 30 years....

She has been the leader for EHS at General Dynamics in Marion, Virginia for over 10 years, and she has been instrumental in helping the Marion location for General Dynamics achieve its safety and environmental goals. During her time at GD, she has moved the facility from one that recorded 55-75 safety incidents per year to one that had only seven minor incidents in 2017. Also, in 2017, the Marion location underwent a large ISO 14001 and OHSAS 18001 Environmental Health and Safety audit with zero findings. Considering the one million square foot size and complexity of the plant with over 500 employees, this was quite a noteworthy accomplishment. Lisa has personally developed and led many programs at GD, including an on-site nursing service that ensures the fastest possible medical attention and best care for their workforce. She also developed, leads, and ensures the training of the on-site Medical Emergency Response Team, and she directs the safety committee and an internal audit program. Lisa holds a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science. She provided guidance and advice to the Southwest Virginia Advanced Manufacturing Center of Excellence in its establishment, and she shares her wealth of knowledge and experience with the public as a member of a Commonwealth of Virginia Manufacturing Environmental Health and Safety Committee. She has also been significantly involved in STEM programs and other programs that encourage girls and women to pursue careers in manufacturing. Lisa was a finalist for the 2018 Southwest Virginia Alliance for Manufacturing Outstanding Woman in Manufacturing Award. Her commitment to excellence, lifelong learning, and continuous improvement have made her an expert in her field. She is an asset to the Board of Directors for the SVAM Center of Excellence.

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