The Manufacturing Institute awarded Shannan Billings, Global Sourcing Director of Raw Materials; Amber Holland, Director, IS Administration Systems; and Danielle Lancianese, Technical Manager with the Women in Manufacturing STEP (Science, Technology, Engineering and Production) Ahead Award. The STEP Ahead Awards honor women who have demonstrated excellence and leadership in their careers and represent all levels of the manufacturing industry.
Honoree: Amber Holland, Director, IS Administration Systems
Amber is a highly-respected leader and has proven her versatility throughout her career. She has been successful in bringing her leadership and Lean Six Sigma skills not only into the world of administration, but also into the world of technology. Her non-traditional skill set coupled with her leadership style allowed her to transform several IS processes that are critical to Shaw’s success.
She serves on the Corporate Steering Team of the Shaw Women's Innovation Network, focusing on inspiring and empowering women within the organization. She also is a part of the Corporate Mentoring Committee, whose current initiative is a partnership with the Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy (CGLA), a STEAM school, to begin a mentoring program for young girls from low income families.
Amber is a role model for all Shaw associates. Her commitment to developing women overall at Shaw, and specifically the associates in her department, is displayed in many forms including formal mentoring partnerships, coaching sessions, advocacy and sponsorships. Her guidance and leadership have enabled her mentees to excel within their positions and helped them be ready to move up within the organization.
Amber also gives back to the community where she lives and was raised. She is a member of the United Way and has served on several non-profit boards, including Treasurer & Vice-Chairman of the Board for the Whitfield Dalton Day Care Center and Treasurer for the Brookwood Elementary PTA. In addition to her volunteer work on the boards and with United Way agencies, Amber has been an instructor with Junior Achievement for both elementary and middle school programs.
Honoree: Shannan Billings, Global Sourcing Director
Shannan manages a raw material portfolio of more than $1 billion for Shaw Industries. Leveraging her experience as a chemical engineer and certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt, she brings valuable perspective to the company's global sourcing efforts. She is able to quickly understand project needs and effectively pursue the best path, while communicating the strategic value to business leaders, technical counterparts and suppliers. Her leadership in leveraging strategic partnerships that ensure the best value is highly recognized throughout the company.
Shannan's background includes positions in various companies in which she was the only female on the management team. She readily shares her experience and insights both informally and formally with young female engineers throughout the company. She is an active participant in the Shaw Women's Innovation (WiN) Network where she facilitated group discussions on topics such as confidence, finding their voice, “having it all,” and business acumen. Shannan was involved in Society of Women Engineers prior to becoming more active in APICS, as a CPIM and CSCP, and ISM, as a CPM and CPSM.
She shares her talents through a variety of philanthropic programs and activities. Shannan supports United Way through participation in fund raising events, and participates in the Women's Leadership Council - a group that energizes the community to impact education, basic needs and heath. She helps with United Way Day of Service projects from landscaping to painting. She regularly donates her time and money to the Tennessee Humane Animal League's Pet Placement Center, KittenLady.org and Department of Chemical Engineering at Virginia Tech.
Finally, she is a personal trainer and certified to instruct pilates, barre and Rossiter. She spends much of her free time working with clients to improve their well-being and posture, and has experience in training clients post-surgery for hip and knee replacements.
Emerging Leader: Danielle Lancianese, Technical Manager
Danielle shows great leadership capability despite being very new to the company. In her short time with Shaw, she joined WiN (Women's Innovation Network) and was chosen to participate in a leadership development pilot course through the network designed to give professional women from all areas the opportunity to develop their leadership skills and implement what they learned. She demonstrates her leadership skills through all her projects and drives results by utilizing her resources. She’s effective at gaining the buy-in needed to accomplish business results, and is a valued team player.
Danielle has expressed great interest in mentoring and developing others. She makes herself available to any teammate that needs help, she has gained their trust and respect. They know they can go to her about a situation and be candid and transparent. She recently attended the Women Mentoring Women program that Chattanooga Women's Leadership Institute holds each year, to continue to grow her mentoring skills. Her passion and empathy for others make her an effective resource.
When Danielle is not at work, she often travels to her hometown (Crossville) where she volunteers in the children’s program at her church. A newcomer to the Chattanooga area, she has been working towards getting more involved in the community. She recently signed up for the Big Brothers Big Sisters program where she will be a big sister to a little girl in the Fort Oglethorpe area. She also is a part of the Society of Women Engineers in Chattanooga.