In a ceremony in Washington, D.C., President Clinton and Commerce Secretary William M. Daley today presented the 1999 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award to four companies in recognition of their achievements in quality and business performance.
The companies are: STMicroelectronics, Inc. - Region Americas, Carrollton, Texas; BI, Minneapolis, Minn.; The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, L.L.C., Atlanta, Ga.; and Sunny Fresh Foods, Monticello, Minn.
"The Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award plays a major role in revitalizing our Nation's economy, competitiveness and quality of life. Through their tireless quest for excellence, the 1999 Baldrige Award recipients are models for any organization that wants to improve performance and competitiveness," the President said in announcing the winners on Nov. 23, 1999.
"The Baldrige Award program provides a focus on organization-wide excellence that is a foundation for success. With their customers, partners and employees, the four 1999 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award winners have built on that foundation to become role models for excellence in the 21st century," said Commerce Secretary Daley.
Named after a former Secretary of Commerce, the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award was established by Congress in 1987 to enhance the competitiveness of U.S. businesses by promoting quality awareness, recognizing quality and business achievements of U.S. companies, and publicizing these companies' successful performance strategies. The award is not given for specific products or services.
Thirty-seven companies have received Baldrige Awards. They are given in manufacturing, service, small business, education and health care.
To apply for the Baldrige Award, organizations submit details on achievements and improvements they have made in seven key areas: leadership, strategic planning, customer and market focus, information and analysis, human resource focus, process management and results. Applications are reviewed by an independent board of examiners. Each applicant receives a "feedback" report citing strengths and opportunities for improvement.
The Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence are used worldwide by thousands of organizations to assess and improve their overall performance. Since 1988, almost 2 million copies of the criteria have been distributed, and wide-scale reproduction by companies and electronic access add to that number significantly.
Further information on the Baldrige National Quality Program is available on the World Wide Web at www.quality.nist.gov.
The Baldrige program is managed by the National Institute of Standards and Technology, an agency of the Commerce Department's Technology Administration, in conjunction with the private sector. NIST strengthens the U.S. economy and improves the quality of life by working with industry to develop and apply technology, measurements and standards through four partnerships: the Baldrige National Quality Program, the Measurement and Standards Laboratories, the Advanced Technology Program and the Manufacturing Extension Partnership.