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The HON Company Receives Georgia 's Highest Award for Performance Excellence

Tuesday, August 3, 2004  Contact: Office of Communications 404-651-7774


ATLANTA , GA - Governor Sonny Perdue today congratulated The HON Company, Cedartown, for being named the 2004 Georgia Oglethorpe Award recipient.  Named for Georgia's founder, James Edward Oglethorpe, the award follows an intense assessment based on the prestigious Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award Criteria.  It is Georgia's highest recognition for organizational performance excellence.  The HON Company, Cedartown, is a part of HNI Corporation, headquartered in Muscatine, Iowa.

"The HON Company's Cedartown facility is a top notch role model for industry in our state," said Governor Sonny Perdue.  "I applaud them for implementing continuous strategic and tactical improvement into their operations."

The HON Company will receive the award during the Georgia Oglethorpe Annual Conference & Awards Banquet to be held September 13-14, 2004 at the Century Center Marriott in Atlanta.  The HON Company, Cedartown, becomes the third industry applicant to receive this award.  In 2003, Governor Perdue presented The Boeing Company, Macon, the prestigious award.  Boeing, Macon, is part of The Boeing Airlift & Tanker Division, which received the national Baldrige Award in 1998.  In 2000, Prestolite Wire, Tifton, a manufacturer of ignition wire systems for the automobile industry, received the award.

"We are proud to be the 2004 Georgia Oglethorpe Award recipient.  This is a tremendous accomplishment for our facility and is further validation of our members' hard work and dedication to continuous improvement and exceeding customer expectations," said Todd Murphy, Vice President and General Manager at The HON Company, Cedartown.  "Our members recognize that success depends on innovation in everything we do and the relentless pursuit of excellence.  Having received the 2003 Shingo Prize for Excellence in Manufacturing, we felt applying for the Georgia Oglethorpe Award was another excellent development and learning opportunity for us."  

"Georgia Oglethorpe is an earned award," said Victoria Taylor, Georgia Oglethorpe's Executive Director.  Applying for the award requires a rigorous self- and third-party assessment of your business against the Georgia Oglethorpe (Baldrige) Criteria.  All applicants receive a written feedback report detailing their respective strengths and improvement opportunities.  Organizations use the Criteria to help them create and sustain higher performance levels.  Research has validated that participating in this process moves profits to the bottom line and helps to create jobs for Georgians." 

In the past six years, Georgia Oglethorpe has provided over $3 million in virtually free consulting to 39 self-nominated Georgia organizations.  Award recipients to date represent business, industry, government, education, and nonprofit sectors.  A healthcare recipient has yet to be named. 

Georgia Oglethorpe is a nonprofit, public-private partnership located at the Georgia Department of Labor.  It provides education, assessment, feedback, and recognition based on the Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence as a service to Georgia organizations.  People interested in learning more about Georgia Oglethorpe should attend the Conference & Awards Banquet this September.  For more information, please contact the Georgia Oglethorpe office at 404.232.3808 (voice mail),, or visit their web site at .