Grayson Award Recognizes Quality Pioneers in Government, Healthcare, and Education

2009 C. Jackson Grayson Distinguished Quality Pioneer Medal Winners:
Terry Holliday, David Kearns, Sister Mary Jean Ryan, Carl Thor, James Zingale

(Washington, DC and Houston, TX - April 22, 2009) - APQC, a nonprofit performance analytics and process improvement research organization (, announced today the second annual C. Jackson Grayson Distinguished Quality Pioneer Medal winners.  Launched last year at ASQ's (American Society for Quality)  World Conference on Quality and Improvement (, the award recognizes individuals who have demonstrated outstanding leadership in the application of quality philosophy, methods and tools in education, healthcare, public service and not-for-profit organizations.

The 2009 C. Jackson Grayson Distinguished Quality Pioneer Medal winners include:

  • Terry K. Holliday, Superintendent, Iredell-Statesville Schools in North Carolina, for his leadership in using quality, innovation and process improvement in K-12 education and inspiring others to apply these approaches on behalf of all children. 
  • David T. Kearns, Former Chairman and CEO of Xerox Corporation, Former Deputy Secretary of U.S. Department of Education, for being one of the first CEOs to transform a major corporation, win the Baldrige Award, and devote himself to adopting those principles in education.
  • Sister Mary Jean Ryan, FSM, President/CEO, SSM Health Care in St. Louis, for her outstanding work and leadership in dramatically driving quality and process improvement and policy in healthcare.
  • Carl G. Thor, President of JarrettThor International in Alexandria, Virginia and former APQC President, for his inspiring others to use quality tools and methods during his leadership of APQC (as both President and a member of the Board of Directors), for his promotion of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award and for his ongoing efforts in government. 
  • James A. Zingale, State Government Industry Advisor with Deloitte and former Executive Director of the Florida Department of Revenue, for his work leading the transition to a more "business-style"  management system in the Florida Department of Revenue.

"We recognize these five pioneers for their efforts and achievements in fields outside of the traditional sectors that embrace the quality movement," said Grayson. "They are exceptional role models who use quality principles to find solutions to serious societal problems, raise the alarm when others don't, and work persistently against high odds and great resistance."

About the C. Jackson Grayson Distinguished Quality Pioneer Medal

The C. Jackson Grayson Medal celebrates the professional philosophy expressed throughout his life by Dr. Grayson, founder and chairman of APQC. He has spent his career applying quality thinking and methods to improve organizations and society.

Winners are nominated by a panel of judges for their extraordinary contributions to furthering the cause of quality in their organization or sector.  They have used management processes, measurement activities and collaboration to increase quality and productivity in their organizations and for society. Information about the award, the winners' achievements and the selection methodology is located at

Grayson, the founder and chairman of APQC, has a long-standing legacy and relationship with ASQ that dates back to the mid-1980s when ASQ and APQC jointly administered the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award.  Grayson is an ASQ Fellow and Distinguished Service Medal recipient.  As a leader at the first White House Conference on Productivity, Grayson actively fostered a national dialogue regarding quality. In 1993 he created the International Benchmarking Clearinghouse to help organizations identify and learn from best practices. In 1996 Grayson led an education improvement initiative to help restructure academic and administrative processes.

PHOTOS AVAILABLE: the Grayson Medal, Dr. Jack Grayson and the 2009 winners.

About APQC

APQC is the leading resource for performance analytics, best practices and process improvement worldwide. Our research studies, benchmarking databases and renowned Knowledge Base provide managers with intelligence that they can use to transform their organizations for better results. A member-based nonprofit founded in 1977, APQC currently serves over 750 of the Fortune Global 1000 companies.

About ASQ

ASQ has been the world's leading authority on quality for 60 years. With more than 90,000 individual and organizational members, the professional association advances learning, quality improvement and knowledge exchange to improve business results, and to create better workplaces and communities worldwide.

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