Kristin Day

2020 STEP Ahead Honoree

Plant Leader
Whirlpool Corporation

My passion for manufacturing lies with providing innovative products for our consumers that help make life easier at home and an engaging place to work for our people. I have a strong appreciation for a strict focus on the processes that support delivering world-class results in safety, quality, delivery and cost.

In her brief time leading Whirlpool’s Ottawa plant, Kristin has revitalized it. When Ottawa faced a 50 percent gap in savings in early 2019, Kristin closed the gap through robust project management and process adherence resulting in a 15% year over year improvement in cost takeout.  Her drive to succeed has also impacted safety, as proven by a campaign she instituted that resulted in  increased identification of safety concerns and a significant reduction in safety incidents. The plant achieved 890,000 hours with a lost time accident. And when Ottawa recently completed its first official World Class Manufacturing audit, the plant received stellar scores. In addition to leading exceptional turnarounds in these areas, Kristin leads the way in innovation as well. While in a previous role in Whirlpool’s Marion plant, she piloted the use of collaborative robots, and that practice is now in place across all of Whirlpool’s U.S. facilities.

Kristin has been instrumental in recruiting and retaining top female talent at Ottawa. She is a founding member of the Whirlpool Women’s Network, which engages and empowers women at all levels of the corporation. Also an advocate for mothers in the workforce, Kristin is known as a “champion of the working mother.”

Kristin has a passion for promoting STEM education among girls. As part of National Manufacturing Day 2017, she led a campaign which brought high visibility to opportunities for women at Whirlpool. She’s an enthusiastic supporter of One Energy – Whirlpool Ottawa Wind Farm STEM scholarships, and a panelist at the annual Get WiSE (Women in Science & Engineering) for Girls conference, which inspires young women to embrace their creativity and problem-solving skills while introducing them to the worlds of science and engineering.

Kristin’s plant employees have often joined her in charitable work with local food drives, Toys for Tots, and the Boys & Girls Club. She offers work schedule flexibility to aid in these efforts. While that’s not the norm in the manufacturing world, Kristin believes it benefits everyone involved.