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April 11, 2019 Jeremy Boren

PPG Leadership, Algorithms in Space, NAMES 2019

PPG Executive Unravels Challenge of Leadership During Transformation

Leading in a time of digital transformation requires executives to keep pace with evolving consumer demands while steering company strategy and building the right team.

But it also means staying on top of your competition and not being satisfied with your company’s current product line, said Rebecca Liebert, senior vice president of Automotive Coatings for PPG.

Rebecca Liebert of PPG gives the first keynote address at IndustryWeek’s M&T Conference.

Liebert gave the first keynote address at the 2019 IndustryWeek Manufacturing & Technology Conference in Pittsburgh last week, emphasizing the role of leadership during PPG’s digital transformation journey.

GrayMatter CEO Jim Gillespie, a graduate of Carnegie Mellon University who co-founded GrayMatter in 1991, introduced Liebert and highlighted the value of GrayMatter’s long-term partnership with PPG that has spanned Pittsburgh’s nearly 30-year transformation from a city rooted in “old industrial” traditions to one driven by tech startup culture.

“We started a tech company in the 90s here before it was fashionable to do tech, helping manufacturing companies do digital transformations,” Gillespie said.

“We’re lucky enough to have some really great clients like Procter & Gamble, Kimberly Clark, GE. But our first client and favorite client was PPG,” he said. “We’ve done a lot of cool stuff for them, most recently helping them with cybersecurity at their sites around the world.”

Liebert outlined four areas where leaders must focus during a company’s transformation:

Organization and Manufacturing Operating System

• Markets and Customer

• Processes and Technology

• Productivity and Competitiveness

Read IndustryWeek’s full report on Liebert’s keynote here.

A Data Scientist Created an Algorithm to Let the World See an Image of a Black Hole

Think about it.

It took a half-ton of hard drives packed with deep space imaging data gathered by a networked telescope the size of the Earth to put researchers in a position to create the first image of a black hole.

But it was an algorithm that brought it all together. So if your high schooler asks you how Algebra will ever come in handy in real life, add this one to the list.

TechCrunch lays out the story of how MIT grad student Katie Bouman and a team funded by the National Science Foundation did the work.

GrayMatter at 2019 North American Manufacturing Excellence Summit

If you’re attending NAMES 2019 in Chicago April 16-17 at the Westin Chicago North Shore, make sure to check in with Pat Craneand Mark Morse of GrayMatter at Booth 23 near the registration desk.

This year NAMES is featuring a ton of GrayMatter partners including Procter & Gamble, Kimberly-Clark, GE, Tyson Foods and Eastman Chemical.

For more about our work with P&G, check out an interview with GrayMatter CEO Jim Gillespie:

GrayMatter Intelligent Assets Lead Paul Casto recently highlighted Eastman Chemical’s digital transformation during an IndustryWeek webinar. Register here to view the presentation.

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Jeremy Boren

Jeremy is GrayMatter's Brand Manager and the author of TechHub and the emPOWERUP Podcast. He writes about digital solutions, trends and culture in the world of operational technology. Jeremy's background is in daily journalism. He has a passion for storytelling and enjoys highlighting the technologies and professionals taking on complex challenges in manufacturing, energy, cybersecurity and infrastructure.