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Leonel Leal of Whirlpool Corporation Presents Dynamic Keynote at 2020 Virtual ASSEMBLY Show

Murakami Manufacturing USA Honored with Assembly Plant of the Year Award


ROSEMONT, IL, October 29, 2020 – During the keynote presentation at the Virtual ASSEMBLY Show, Leonel Leal, Director of Global Advanced Manufacturing Engineering at Whirlpool Corp., provided the attendees with insight on the importance of focusing on agility, resiliency and capability to foresee what a factory will look like in the future. Prior to the keynote, Austin Weber, of ASSEMBLY Magazine presented Murakami Manufacturing USA with the magazine’s Plant of the Year Award. For on-demand access to both presentations, all education sessions, and the exhibitors visit

“We appreciate the outstanding keynote presentation Leonel delivered and the great insight and information he shared with our audience. We missed the opportunity of being together this year but were happy to bring together the assembly community virtually to build connections and gain new insights,” said Bill DeYoe, Publisher of ASSEMBLY Magazine, producers of The ASSEMBLY Show. “We thank all of our speakers, attendees, sponsors, exhibitors, and partners who supported this first time virtual event. Content in the educational sessions was well received  and exhibitors were able to connect with customers and showcase new products through the virtual environment. The entire virtual event, including sessions, will remain available on-demand through June 2021.”

Michael Rodenberg, Chairman and CEO of Murakami Manufacturing USA accepted the Plant of the Year Award as the company celebrates their 20th anniversary assembling over 10,000 rear view mirrors a day.  “I thank ASSEMBLY magazine for this recognition and want to thank our staff for they are the ones who day in and day out allow us to be the best. Our parent company is Japanese, and we follow the practice of KAIZEN, which helps us lead global activities and drive manufacturing continuous improvements.”

During the keynote presentation, Leonel Leal said, “Manufacturing fame is the result of years of transformational effort combined with the experience of many years. At Whirlpool we accomplish this by focusing on our purpose, building awareness, and driving passion. Manufacturing Innovation is truly about the people. We have worked collaboratively to focus on our vision through a multi-phased road mapping journey. We are able to see what our factory is going to look like in the future based on agility, resiliency and capability for us to be able to deliver the best products to our customers.”

Following the keynote presentation, Austin Weber, Senior Editor, ASSEMBLY Magazine, moderated the Lean Manufacturing and Manual Assembly workshop. Jeffrey Miller of Productivity Engineering Services talked about Lean Layout Do’s and Don’ts; Art Smalley of Art of Lean Inc. discussed The ABCs of A3 Reports; Timothy Pottorff from QP3 ErgoSystems LLC discussed Best Practices for Ergonomics on the Assembly Line; and Ben Marsh from Scout Systems discussed IIoT With Manual Assembly. Following the presentation, Austin led a Q&A session and provided attendees tips and tricks for creating efficient line layouts; improving their operation; error-proofing their process; and preventing work-related injuries. Sponsors of the workshop were Atlas Copco, Scheugenpflug and SCHUNK.

All content from The ASSEMBLY Show will be available until June 2021 at including 21 sponsor-produced sessions, two workshops, the keynote presentation and three webinars.  The Learning Theater presentations cover various topics on the latest technological advances in assembly from companies including Aegis Software, Atlas Copco, Balluff Inc., Bosch Rexroth, DEPRAG Inc., Dorner Manufacturing Corp., EPSON Robots,  INFICON Inc., Kistler Instrument Corp., LACO Technologies, Nordson Corporation, ROSTI, Scout Systems, Specialty Coating Systems, Sturtevant Richmont, Tutelar Technologies, Ubisense, Universal Robots, VKS, and Zeltwanger Leak Testing & Automation. 

Through the virtual platform, assembly manufacturing professionals had access to interactive exhibits from leading assembly companies, including Gold Sponsor Promess and Silver Sponsors ASG, Schmidt Technology, Schunk, Sick Sensor Intelligence, Universal Robots and VKS.  The 2021 ASSEMBLY Show will be held October 26-28 at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, IL. Over 150 companies have already reserved their exhibit space to showcase the newest products and services on an expansive trade show floor. For more information on becoming an exhibitor or sponsor visit

The ASSEMBLY Show is sponsored by ASSEMBLY (, a monthly trade magazine read by 56,000 engineers and managers responsible for manufacturing and designing cars, computers, catheters, coffee makers, etc. ASSEMBLY covers the processes, technologies, and strategies for joining discrete parts into finished products. The event is produced by BNP Media (, one of the country's leading business-to-business media companies serving professionals across 50+ industries.


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For Further Information, Contact:
Amy Riemer, Media Relations Representative
978-475-4441 (office) or 978-502-4895 (cell)  

For press registration click here and use code: PRESS20.