My Career History

Notre Dame Graduation, May 2012. L-to-R. My godfather Jimmy, my brother Pug, my mom Nancy, me, my dad Dave, and my Pap.

A day at the refinery, November 2014. One of my process technicians and I working during a turnaround.

Arconic Logo. A new beginning for me with Arconic starting in September, 2016.

After I graduated from Notre Dame in 2012, I started my career with ExxonMobil as a distillation process engineer. Some examples of my work scope included using AspenTech software to model distillation towers and their internal pieces, troubleshooting issues by analyzing process data or developing plant tests, designing tower or drum internals, and supporting plant shutdown and start-up operations. After a year, I moved into a lubricants process engineer role at ExxonMobil’s 585,000 barrel per day Baytown, Texas, refinery, where I provided around-the-clock technical guidance and business support for the daily operation, improvement, troubleshooting, and maintenance of four lubricant processing units and a fleet of tanks. 

After the lubricants role, I was placed in a short four-month assignment leading a team installing and operating facilities to be compliant with new EPA regulations. My responsibilities included developing and presenting a training package on a new refinery flare recovery system to all 550 wage-process employees and 60 operations support engineers, implementing new tools to monitor the flare system, and providing bi-weekly updates to management. During this role, I started the Texas A&M MBA program, and was balancing my career and school full-time.

 

My final role with ExxonMobil’s Baytown Refinery was jet fuel and diesel coordinator. I devised and communicated a daily run-plan strategy for four jet fuel producing and five diesel producing units while managing two million barrels of inventory. Each day, I had to ensure we produced the quantity and quality of jet fuel and diesel required to satisfy our customers’ needs while minimizing product giveaway and handling process constraints. 

In September 2016, I started a new job as a consultant in the Management Consulting and Strategy (MCS) group with Arconic, Inc. Arconic turns basic metals such as aluminum, titanium or nickel alloys into many products that are used in aerospace, automotive, commercial transportation, construction, industrial gas turbine, electronics, and defense. MCS provides services such as business strategy analysis, business case development, post-merger integration, benchmarking, and organization design. My first project was operations-based at our facility in Davenport, Iowa. Our team’s goal was to reduce scrap metal generated during the production process of skinsheet, which is used to make the fuselage section of an airplane. Another large project I worked on regarded improving the site's forecasting capabilities and tools for a significant automotive customer to enhance operations stability. I chose to join MCS because I wanted an opportunity to combine both my chemical engineering and MBA degrees to deliver overall value to the customers, company, employees, and shareholders.

In July 2017, a new opportunity with Kawneer, an Arconic company that serves the building and construction industry, presented itself. I started as the Production Control Scheduling Manager and Shipping Department head at our facility in Cranberry Township, 20 miles north of Pittsburgh. Kawneer supplies aluminum extrusions used to make curtain wall, and our plant is unique in that we are the only one in Kawneer that also supplies commercial windows. My job is to oversee our demand-capacity planning process, ensuring we have the capacity to produce what the market requires, while balancing our lead times and the plant's On-Time In-Full (OTIF) customer delivery. I work very closely with our commercial team to understand what the market's needs are and our operations team to execute plans needed to meet those customer needs. 

 

My Notre Dame chemical engineering degree, the skills I have from developing an “engineer’s mindset,” and my manufacturing experience and MBA degree combination have made me a unique asset to my company.

Northwestern University's Montgomery Ward Building.

 

This is one of thousands of buildings Kawneer products have been used in.

 

Photo from kawneer.com.

© 2020 by Shelly Elliott.

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