Advanced Quality Engineering, Inc. (AQE) has been assisting organizations of all sizes and types in improving quality and business processes for more than 20 years. We can help you achieve your quality goals—simply and thoroughly.

AQE is an independently owned and operated training and consulting firm. It includes associates who support clients with a full spectrum of training and consulting services related to quality management.

about our associates
  associates primary area of expertise
 Dale K. Mize  Six Sigma Program Chair, statistics, quality management, SPC, FMEA
 Sara Braziller  Lean Sigma, performance measurement
 Wayne Corrigan  Six Sigma, quality control systems, FMEA, DOE
 Don Darrah  ISO 9000, AS 9100, quality management systems
 Tom Humphreys  Lean mfg., TS 16949, quality control systems, APQP, PPAP, FMEA
 Thomas L. Krinke  Six Sigma, performance measurement, FMEA, process improvement 
 James Loeffler  ISO 13485 medical device mfg., FDA QSR, FMEA
   Lynn Moline  Leadership, strategic planning, problem solving, team building
 John Moorhouse  ISO 9000, TS 16949, Quality control systems, FMEA
 Anish Shah

Metrology, Measurement Systems Analysis (GR&R)

 Mary Slack  Project Management
 Dan Sommers  Six Sigma, statistics, SPC,  DFSS, DOE

"Teamwork is the ability to work together toward a common vision… It is the fuel that
 allows common people to attain uncommon results." —Andrew Carnegie

associate bios

AQE is an active consulting partner with the following group:

Tennessen Associates, Inc., a leader in Operational Excellence,
Tennessen Associates, Inc. works with small, privately owned companies as well as large public companies to improve operational performance and increase bottom-line profitability. Services include assessment, design, and change management for manufacturing and office processes, facilities and layouts, material control, and organizational design. We are a key part of their consulting team, specializing in organizational culture and leadership.

Other associations include:
• American Society for Quality (ASQ) Minnesota Section,
• ASQ, the world's leading membership organization devoted to quality,

Dale Mize, president of Advanced Quality Engineering Inc.
Dale K. Mize, president of Advanced Quality Engineering, Inc. has more than 28 years of experience consulting and training and 21 years of technical and managerial experience comprised of 4 years in customer service, 7 years in product engineering, and 10 years in manufacturing as a quality engineer, quality manager, and corporate director of quality assurance. The majority of his career was spent with the General Electric Lighting Business Group, where he designed products, developed manufacturing processes and designed quality systems for high technology lighting products. During the five years he spent with Wagner Spray Tech Corp., he designed and implemented a comprehensive quality system based upon Total Quality Management principles.

He began implementing SPC in glass forming operations at General Electric in 1976 and has since implemented SPC into a multitude of processes, both manufacturing and service. Since 1988, he has consulted and taught for more than one hundred and fifty organizations and has trained more than 10,000 persons in various quality management topics. For 18 years, he was adjunct faculty at The Center for Business Excellence, University of St. Thomas, where he was also the Chair, Six Sigma Programs. He now holds a similar role at Normandale Community College and provides seminars regularly through the MNSCU, the South Dakota Technical Institutes and the Iowa Technical Colleges. Since 2008 he has been delivering Six Sigma training in Croatia and Slovakia. He is a senior member of the American Society for Quality, a Certified Quality Engineer and Certified Quality Auditor. He has presented papers and workshops on SPC at the Minnesota Quality Conference, at the Second International Applied Statistics in Industry Conference in Wichita, Kansas and the 1995, 1996, 1999, 2000 and 2001 TQM/ISO Symposia sponsored by South Dakota State University. He is co-author of the SPC training workbook, An Ounce of Prevention. He holds an AAS in Electronic Engineering Technology and a BS in Quality Management from the University of Minnesota.

Sara Braziller has over 20 years of demonstrated experience in successfully leading and managing projects, establishing high performing organizations and problem solving in over 75 product and service companies. Sara is currently an independent consultant, specifically working with companies to improve utilization of people and assets (i.e., business processes and systems).   Previous positions include:
  • Vice President and CIO for Jenny Craig International in San Diego, California. Major accomplishments included national implementation of the first company intranet and ADP’s time and attendance system, establishing a data warehouse for marketing and customer relationship management,  relocation of the Company’s headquarters including main data center, and implementation of JD Edwards in Australia.
  • Director of Consulting for the local office of Virchow Krause, a regional accounting and consulting firm, where she led the start-up and development of a management consulting practice for this 150-person office
  • Director of Business Transformation and Information Systems for MVE, a $200M international manufacturing company, where she built and maintained an effective information systems infrastructure and established an organization-wide framework for business change
  • She has also held three other consulting leadership positions in both Big 5 consulting organizations as well as a national information technology firm.
Sara holds a BA in Production Operations Management with a minor in Information Systems from North Texas State University, where she graduated magna cum laude.
Sara is currently the Director of Volunteer Resources for WAMSO – the Minnesota Orchestra Volunteer Association in support of music education programs.  She has also held board positions at such organizations as the Minnesota Hearing and Service Dog Program, the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, and APICS.  Through APICS, she is certified in Resource Management (CIRM) and is also a Certified Practitioner in Inventory Management (CPIM).

In January 2004, Sara was honored by ComputerWorld as one of the 100 premier IT leaders in the world.

Wayne Corrigan has spent 28 years in industry as a manufacturing engineer, quality engineer, quality assurance manager, and trainer for three Fortune 500 companies: General Electric, Litton Microwave and Alliant Techsystems/Honeywell. He has been responsible for quality in the production, design and development of high technology products and for product reliability testing.  He has authored extensive quality documentation for manufacturing processes in accordance with Mil-Q-9858a and ISO 9000. He has extensive experience applying statistical quality control techniques in manufacturing and is highly proficient with Design of Experiments techniques including Taguchi methods. Another important area of his expertise is Quality Function Deployment (QFD) with which he has taught classes and completed numerous projects for clients. He has been providing instruction in these topics at the Management Center, University of St. Thomas for 9 years. He holds a BS in Electrical Engineering from Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and is a Certified Quality Auditor by the American Society for Quality.

Don Darrah is an associate of Advanced Quality Engineering and a successful independent Consultant/Trainer/Registration Auditor, an ASQ Certified Quality Auditor and an RAB Certified Auditor, and qualified for his RAB Lead Assessor auditing requirements. He has consulted with several companies in Minnesota, Iowa, Indiana and Wisconsin areas and assisted them to successful registrations to the ISO 9000 and ISO/TS 16949 quality standards. He is also experienced in instructing an RAB accredited 36-hour Lead Assessor, Internal Auditor, ISO 9000 Implementation, ISO 9000 Overview, and Documentation courses, and works with 3 different course providers. He has developed his own Basic Process Mapping course, and holds a BS Degree from Pillsbury College in Owatonna , MN.

Don worked for a major Tier I supplier to the automotive industry for almost 10 years and became familiar with the ISO/TS 16949 standard. He was Team Leader for the process auditing function. One of his charges was to facilitate a cross-functional team for the setup and implementation of a company-wide (2 facilities) ISO/TS 16949 compliant on-line documentation system. He facilitated several teams in the implementation of several of the ISO/TS 16949 elements, including Nonconforming Material, Corrective/Preventive Action, Inspection/Testing, and the creation of several control plans. Other fields of hands-on experience include Calibration, Material Review Board Team Leader, and development of a welder certification program. Prior to entering the quality field, Don was a machinist, with both traditional and the setup, programming, and operation of CNC horizontal and vertical machining centers, and turning centers.

Tom Humphreys has over 25 years of experience in the quality field. He has worked in the development of advanced laser machining systems, aerospace, medical, semi-conductor, and automotive quality systems and has designed and managed quality systems compliant to MIL-SPEC, ISO, and QS standards. Tom teaches classes in Lean Manufacturing, Lean Administration and Lean Thinking, Six Sigma, SPC, FMEA, APQP, MSA, PPAP, 8-D problem solving and quality practices in various industries. Tom also consults organizations in Environmental Management Systems compliant to ISO 14001. He has developed business processes for high tech manufacturing companies, telecommunication industries, printing industries, architectural firms, mortgage companies, woodworking companies and distribution service organizations. He was the Quality Assurance Manager at QMR Plastics, River Falls WI, an ISO/TS 16949 registered injection-molding company specializing in high performance materials and assemblies that is a major power-train supplier to the auto industry. He is an instructor at the University of St. Thomas; Center for Business Excellence, Hennepin Technical College, Century College and a staff member at Normandale Community College in the Twin Cities. Tom is a Senior Member of the American Society for Quality (ASQ) and holds these certificates: Certified Mechanical Inspector (CMI) Certified Quality Auditor (CQA) and ASQ Certified Quality Manager.

Thomas L. Krinke has over 30 years of experience in corporate management positions including Customer Order Processing, Inventory Management, Purchasing and Distribution. For the past five years he has been adjunct faculty at The Center for Business Excellence, University of St. Thomas. He also has extensive experience in leading process improvement and continuous improvement projects in many service-oriented companies.  He has been the Master Black Belt at Metro Sales Inc for the past five years.  He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Electrical Engineering and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration, both from the University of Minnesota.  He received his Six Sigma Black Belt Certification from the University of St. Thomas.

James R. Loeffler is a 43 year veteran of manufacturing businesses. His professional career includes 12 years in military electronics manufacturing and environmental testing with IBM Federal Systems Division and Control Data Aerospace. He spent five years as Outdoor Appliance Division Quality Manager for the Toro Company working with new consumer electrical products in high volume manufacturing.

Jim worked 5 years with Pharmacia Deltec as Director of Manufacturing Engineering, as Supplier Engineering Manager, and as corporate training manager on Total Quality Management. Jim spent 9 years with Surgical Technologies, Inc. as Director of Quality Assurance and Regulatory Affairs. Accomplishments in this position include the simultaneous certification of four corporate facilities in the USA and Europe in ISO 9001/EN 46001. In his 17 years with Medtronic, Inc. Jim has been a Manufacturing Engineering Manager, Design Project Manager and Sr. Principle Regulatory Compliance Specialist. Unique accomplishments at Medtronic include designing the corporate JIT/World Class Manufacturing system for  Medtronic facilities in the USA, Canada, The Netherlands and Puerto Rico. Jim was awarded the World Class Manufacturing Outstanding Individual Contributor Award and the Medtronic Star of Excellence for Distinguished Quality Performance (three times). Jim is an expert in the Japanese RPAL regulations, ISO 13485:2003 and associated quality systems.  He holds a BS in Electrical Engineering from Iowa State University.

Lynn Moline is a facilitator, consultant, trainer, and motivational speaker. Her career spans more than 20 years in executive leadership and line management positions, as well as in staff professional roles in a variety of functions. Lynn entered private professional practice in 1995 to help executives improve their organizations’ strategic positions through effective leadership, planning, problem solving, and decision making.

Her career began with a role as the “front line” public relations and communications officer for Northern States Power Company, which at that time was engaged in building controversial electric supply facilities. She was promoted through the company, serving in managerial and professional positions in areas including corporate strategy and planning, marketing, business startups and entrepreneurial ventures, and governmental relations, serving finally as director of corporate quality. Lynn left NSP in 1992 to become president and executive director of the nationally acclaimed Minnesota Council for Quality, where she led the creation and administration of Minnesota’s version of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award.

Lynn earned an MBA from the University of St. Thomas and a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Wisconsin. She is a certified instructor for Wilson Learning Corporation and she holds a professional certification from the International Association of Facilitators. She is also an experienced Minnesota Quality Award examiner.

John Moorhouse
brings nearly 20 years of experience in quality assurance systems for manufacturing and processing industries. He has worked as a Director of Quality, Quality Manager, and consultant, leading ISO/TS 16949 registrations in single and multiple-site facilities, including hands-on use and instruction of quality tools and methodologies.  His background covers Defense, Automotive, Electronics, Agriculture, and Consumer Products industries.  He holds BS degrees in Chemical and Metallurgical Engineering from the University of Minnesota.  He is an RAB approved QMS auditor, and holds ASQ CQ Manager, CQE, and CQA certificates, as well as a Professional Engineer license.

Anish H. Shah, an associate of AQE, continues to provide training on understanding of fundamental measurement principles, measurement systems analysis, and measurement practices with attention to evaluating and reducing measurement uncertainty. He regularly consults on customer projects pertaining to measurement system evaluations including measurement software and GD&T. He offers his expertise to individuals in formulating training roadmaps in the areas of metrology, quality and GD&T.

As the Director of Metrology at PQI since Nov. 2007, Anish provided leadership and direction in the field of metrology, chiefly concerning measurement equipment used in inspection, calibration, process development, and production applications. He had the overall responsibility for the refinement and compliance of the company’s metrology services.

Prior to working for PQI, Anish has 10 yrs of experience working for the disc drive industry, automotive sector, as well as earth moving industry throughout several operations and plants supporting quality and dimensional metrology enhancement projects. He was employed as a Senior Corporate Measurement Engineer at Hutchinson Technology Inc., a leading supplier of suspension assemblies for the disc drive industry. At HTI, Anish was responsible for integration of 2D and 3D dimensional measurement systems for product, process, and tooling throughout several operations and plants. Prior to taking this position in 1999, Anish worked as a Project Engineer for Automated Analysis Corporation and consulted at the Caterpillar Technical Center in Peoria, IL and General Motors Technical Center in Warren, MI. While at CAT, he worked for the Precision Manufacturing Group and supported quality and dimensional metrology enhancement projects. At GM, he worked for the Vehicle Synthesis Analysis and Simulation group supporting projects on providing measurement solutions to improve ‘manufacturability of product’ for several vehicle models.

He is a graduate of the Measurement Science program at the University of North Carolina/Charlotte and holds a Master’s in Technology Management from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul. Anish has been a member of SME since 1994 when he first joined as a student member and has served as chapter chair for the Minneapolis section in 2002 and 2003. Anish is a Certified Quality Engineer and a current member of ASQ. He has been teaching the ASQ exam prep courses for over 5 yrs.

Mary Slack is a management consultant in human resource and organizational development. She specializes in the areas of project management, management development, quality improvement and interpersonal skills. Mary has over 15 years of corporate experience in training, administration, course development and project management. Mary is an adjunct faculty member at the University of St. Thomas, University of Minnesota and the College of St. Catherine.

Mary has designed, developed and delivered training programs in the following areas:  Project Management, Situational Leadership, Teaming, Group Dynamics, Performance Management, Problem Solving, Effective Meetings, Interpersonal Communication, Conflict Resolution, Change Management, Understanding Personal Preferences (MBTI), Interviewing and Personal Development. Mary has also consulted with subject matter experts to create development to meet function-specific needs.

Mary’s certifications and qualifications include:
  • Project Management Professions – Project Management Institute
  • Myers-Briggs Type Indicator
  • Development Dimensions International, Inc. (DDI
  • Performance Management  (Aubrey Daniels)
  • LIFO Orientation Training (Stuart Atkins)
  • Leadership Architect (Lominger Limited, Inc.)
Mary holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Education from Iowa State University and a Master of Arts degree in Human Resource Development from Ottawa University.

Dan Sommers
has 21 years of service at the General Electric Lighting Business Group. He has been a Design for Six Sigma Master Black Belt in Lighting Technology, a Six Sigma Black Belt in a high-volume lamp manufacturing plant, a product-line Quality Manager, a product-line Quality Project Leader, a Quality Manager and Quality Engineer in a high-volume lamp manufacturing plant, a Reliability Engineer, and an Applied Statistician in the Lighting Research Laboratory.

He has taught dozens of waves of Black Belts and Master Black Belts in the tools of Design for Six Sigma, Design of Experiments, Response Surface Methodology, Process Optimization, Basic Statistics, and Reliability Analysis. As a Black Belt, he taught five waves of Black Belts and Green Belts in the M-A-I-C tools of Six Sigma, as well as applying those tools to his own Black Belt projects. Dan holds an MS in Industrial and Systems Engineering from the University of Iowa, and an MS in Statistics and a BS in Actuarial Science from Ball State University