Jeanne Biber

2020 STEP Ahead Honoree

Manager of Product Regulatory Affairs
Harley-Davidson Motor Company

Since I was a child, I had an inquisitive mind wanting to know how things work.  My father encouraged my intellect and taught me at a young age to maintain my own vehicle. He is the reason I am passionate about manufacturing and studied engineering.  Love & miss you, Dad!

Since joining Harley-Davidson Motor Company (H-D) in 2005, Jeanne has held positions in product development, quality, value engineering and regulatory compliance—achieving a host of accomplishments along the way. For example, through her role in value engineering, Jeanne provided leadership for over 50 continuous improvement projects that saved an estimated $4.4 million annually. She was also instrumental in improving the Motorcycle Field Quality Management process to reduce quality defects and improve customer satisfaction. This process drove a 25 percent improvement in 2-year warranty repairs, a 22 percent improvement in 1-year warranty repairs over the course of two model years and continues to keep Harley-Davidson providing world-class quality motorcycles.

In her current role of product regulatory affairs manager, Jeanne is responsible for sound and emissions-related regulatory certifications impacting every H-D vehicle worldwide. Beyond her outstanding technical and process skills, Jeanne has actively supported the development of women throughout her organization. For instance, she was the leader in the formation of H-D’s Women’s Business Enterprise Resources Group (BERG) named CREW (Connecting Relationships Empowering Women), where she served as co-lead for three years. In that capacity, she led several women’s leadership conferences, and worked closely with the women’s group Catalyst, a global nonprofit that helps build workplaces that work for women.  Jeanne also was instrumental in developing and launching a career fair for “PEARLS for Teen Girls” to provide support to young women in the Milwaukee area. This event impacted over 100 female teens in the first year and the career fair is still active over 5 years later.

As a mother of six children, Jeanne values the importance of being part of her community.  She is a longtime volunteer for Junior Achievement and speaks at middle and high schools about career opportunities in engineering. In addition to teaching religious education at a local community church, she has coached recreational soccer for middle school girls, volunteered at area school sporting events and co-led a local Cub Scouts troop.

Jeanne sees her success as both an opportunity and an obligation to share her story with young women. She embraces the status of role model with the same energy and charismatic approach as her professional activities. Her work in educational, recreational, community and professional volunteer activities demonstrate her passion and desire to make a difference.