Team

The Gemba Academy team operates out of offices in California and Texas. We work hard to practice what we preach, especially with regards to the "respect for people" principle of lean, and have developed an innovative Culture Code.

Founding Partners

The founding partners of Gemba Academy come with lean consulting, lean and six sigma training, and executive-level lean transformation experience. This is the Gemba Academy difference: we're lean and six sigma experts first, who then learned how to create great training videos.

Ron Pereira

Ron Pereira

Co-Founder and Partner

Ron has more than 20 years of experience in various manufacturing, supply chain, and senior leadership roles. Ron has held the titles of process engineer, engineering manager, master black belt, and director of manufacturing & continuous improvement. In 2002 Ron was the first American to win the Nokia Global Six Sigma and Overall Quality award in Helsinki, Finland. Ron holds a bachelor's degree in automated manufacturing and an MBA in technology management.

Kevin Meyer

Kevin Meyer

Co-Founder and Partner

Kevin has over 35 years of manufacturing leadership experience in the automotive lighting, telecom electronics, and medical device industries. He has been responsible for lean transformations at Sylvania, Abbott Laboratories, Newport Corporation, and most recently as President of Specialty Silicone Fabricators. He guest lectures on business, manufacturing, and leadership topics at his alma mater Rensselaer as well as CalPoly.

Jon Miller

Jon Miller

Co-Founder and Partner

Jon has dedicated his 25+ year career to the field of kaizen, continuous improvement, and lean management. Jon spent the first eighteen years of his life in Japan, then graduated from McGill University with a bachelor’s in linguistics. He worked as an interpreter with the Shingijutsu company for eight years, traveling the world as they taught kaizen and the Toyota Production System.

In 1998 Jon co-founded the consulting and training firm Gemba Research and served as its President and CEO. Jon led dozens of Lean transformation projects in a wide range of organizations, large and small across more than 20 countries. While collaborating on projects with Ron Pereira and Kevin Meyer, the three co-founders saw a common vision of transforming continuous improvement learning and established Gemba Academy in 2009.

In 2011 the Gemba Research consulting operations merged with the Kaizen Institute. Jon served as its global CEO and board member, leading the firm in the application of kaizen into new markets and sectors. In 2015 Jon left the consulting field to support the Gemba Academy startup full-time.

Today Jon applies his experience in continuous improvement to advise clients on their deployment strategies, and in developing learning solutions for Gemba Academy.

Customer Care & Success

Making sure our customers are successful is how we measure success at Gemba Academy. Your dedicated account managers will help guide your journey with using Gemba Academy.

Elaine Cressionnie

Elaine Cressionnie

Account Manager

Elaine is responsible for post-sale support of Gemba Academy customers. She has over 20 years’ experience in customer service in the fields of retail, residential leasing, insurance, and public and school libraries. Elaine holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration (Marketing) from the University of Florida, as well as a Master of Science degree in Library Science from the University of North Texas.

Laurel Marden

Laurel Marden

Account Manager

Laurel is responsible for post-sale support of Gemba Academy customers. She has a vast professional experience in customer facing roles ranging from Human Resources, Payroll, and Business Administration. Laurel holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Management from Western Governors University.

Brita Quella

Brita Quella

Account Manager

Brita is responsible for post-sale support of Gemba Academy customers. She previously held positions in Human Resources for both large and small companies. Brita has a Bachelor’s of Business Administration; major in Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management.

Diane Rodriguez

Diane Rodriguez

Account Manager

Diane is responsible for post-sale support of Gemba Academy customers. She has over 13 years providing customer support. She previously held positions as a Technical Trainer and Strategic Account Manager.

Sales

Our sales reps are here to guide you to the right solution, and ensure that we answer the most important question: "What problems are you trying to solve?".

Tiana Banes

Tiana Banes

Inside Sales Representative

Tiana is responsible for post-sale support of Gemba Academy customers. She has over 17 years of experience in the financial industry and graduated with a Bachelor’s degree from the University of North Texas.

Leslie Moles

Leslie Moles

Business Development Manager

Leslie joined Gemba Academy in 2013 and is part of our Business Development team. She specializes in helping customers around the world identify the Gemba Academy solutions that will progress their journey in continuous improvement. Leslie is currently working towards a Black Belt certification. Prior to joining our team, she held administrative and accounting roles within the SAAS and call center industries.

Jennifer Scott

Jennifer Scott

​Business Development Manager

Jennifer is responsible for business development activities with enterprise-level and global customers. She has over twenty years experience developing such relationships. Prior to joining Gemba Academy, she held positions as an Enterprise and Strategic Accounts Manager.

Coaching & Certifications

Our coaching team is here to guide you 1-1 through the toughest issues, as well as to help facilitate your way through our Lean Six Sigma certification programs.

Steven Kane

Steven Kane

Director of Coaching and Certification

Steve is responsible for Gemba Academy's lean coaching and certifications. Prior to Gemba Academy, Steve had a diverse career ranging from being responsible for a large medical device sales territory, plant manager where he leveraged lean methods to drive improvement, and VP Operations at Specialty Silicone Fabricators where he led the lean efforts of the company. He has served on the western region board of The Association for Manufacturing Excellence and has worked with the Michigan Lean Learning Consortium and the California Central Coast Lean Forum.

John Knotts

John Knotts

Senior Coach

As a Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt, John has over 30 years of experience in operational excellence. He served 21 years in the US Air Force -- 11 as an internal coach and consultant. He led strategy and change efforts with Booz | Allen | Hamilton for 18 clients. He was an internal coach and consultant for Fortune 100, United Services Automobile Association. And, he’s been a solopreneur growing, scaling, and improving companies for over 12 years. In addition to multiple certifications in change management, project management, agile, and information technology, John has a Bachelor’s in Management, a Master’s in Quality Systems Management, and a Ph.D. in Industrial and Organizational Psychology.

Content Development

Our production team is always hard at work on the next great course, and making it look its best!

Jessica Bush

Jessica Bush

Senior Content Editor

Jessica is responsible for the editorial aspects of Gemba Academy’s content, focusing on course materials, podcast production, social media, and other copywriting efforts. An avid advocate of entrepreneurship, Jessica has worked with two technology startups as co-founder and head marketing strategist. Jessica received her BS in Business Administration from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, with a minor in Music.

Ana Cruz

Ana Cruz

Content Development Senior Manager

Ana is a two-time Emmy and NAB Marconi Radio Awards winner with over 15 years of experience as a radio personality, TV presenter and producer. She has worked with broadcasting companies such as Televisa, CBS Radio, Azteca America and Telemundo. Ana has also developed digital marketing strategies and campaigns with global companies in support of local and national activities for Toyota, Sam's Club, Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, McCormick and more. For the past 5 years, Ana has led the development of Spanish Content for Gemba Academy including online training courses, blog articles and social media. Ana currently leads Gemba Academy's Sales and Marketing for Latin America.

Greg Nickell

Greg Nickell

Director of Studios

Greg has over 25 years of experience in Operations, Quality, and Engineering. In 1998, he developed a media center within a corporate setting and began to train his employees with the use of in-house produced video. Training expanded company-wide and he began receiving requests for larger and larger projects. In 2006, Greg started his own media production company where later, Gemba Academy became a client. In 2013, Greg became a full-time Gemba Academy staff member. His current responsibilities focus on pre-production, production, and post-production of all Gemba Academy media products.

Carlos Rivero

Carlos Rivero

Creative Director

Carlos Rivero has over 25 years of advertising experience focusing on creative direction and broadcast production. After receiving a B.A. degree in Film from The Ohio State University, Carlos began his career as a producer for Univision. He has gone on to lead campaigns with clients ranging from Daimler-Chrysler, McDonald’s, and Southwest Airlines. He is also the founder of The Creative Exchange, a creative/production/post-production agency with clients from AutoZone, Conn’s, Academy, and USA Network.

Operations

Keeping Gemba Academy running smoothly and efficiently day-to-day.

Anthony Gomez

Anthony Gomez

Director of Information Technology

Tony is a 20 year veteran of the computer and software engineering space. Today, Gemba Academy's IT infrastructure relies on his knowledge and experience to produce meaningful experiences for our customers, and a smooth day-to-day working environment for our staff.

Holley Seifert

Holley Seifert

​Business Manager

Holley is responsible for the back-office business activities of Gemba Academy, including invoicing, accounts payable/receivable, contracts management, and asset management. She has over twenty years of customer service experience. Prior to Gemba Academy, she obtained executive leadership experience as the Customer Care Manager at a medical device manufacturer.