Stephen Ballenger will start as Hitachi’s new vice president of operations on Nov. 20.
Ballenger will lead Hitachi’s manufacturing in Michigan City. He specializes in bringing Lean Six Sigma and improvement efficiency strategies to global and multi-site manufacturing environments. Ballenger has worked as a Lean consultant for Hitachi since July 2023.
“We are modernizing our operations using Lean methodology with great success and as a consultant, Steve has been an integral part of that transformation,” said John Randall, Hitachi’s president and CEO, in a press release. “(Steve) brings a wealth of experience in not only Lean manufacturing, but in operations management, strategy development and continuous improvement.”
Ballenger previously worked as a senior consultant for Michigan City-based Lean Focus. He has 40 years of management experience, including senior operations leadership roles at Bosch USA, STIHL, GKN Automotive and Camco Manufacturing. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering and a master’s degree in industrial management from Clemson University in South Carolina.
Hitachi is an industrial compressed air manufacturer with headquarters in Michigan City. They have been in business for more than 57 years. Hitachi’s portable air compressors provide the air power for construction and assist in oil and gas mining and production. Hitachi’s products are used in manufacturing operations around the world. The company has factories in Michigan City and Suzhou, China, and is part of Hitachi Industrial Equipment Systems Co.