Tempe AZ

With annual sales of approximately $1B, United Dairymen of Arizona is proud to be among the few remaining privately held, member owned, full-service dairy operations in the country. Our dairy processing plant runs 24/7 producing a variety of dairy products including cream, butter, lactose, milk powders, MPC and SMP. Our umbrella of operations includes service and supply to our members: installation, emergency repair, preventive maintenance and transportation services along with chemical, equipment and pharmaceutical supplies.

Our earnest, family-based culture has always been part of our success and our long-standing presence in the community. The company values integrity, honesty, hard work and mutual respect for employees, customers, and dairy farmers.

Due to exciting growth, the Director of Plant Operations (DOO) is a new role for the organization. They will be responsible for providing overall leadership, strategy, planning and vision to operational staff to ensure the company has proper controls, administrative and reporting procedures, and communication systems in place to effectively handle member’s milk, grow the organization and ensure financial strength and operating efficiency. The DOO will drive performance optimization through leadership and mentorship of the operations team. Supported by the principles and concepts of focused improvement, the DOO will design and develop an elevated operating model scaled for growth. The DOO contributes to the overall successful operation of the company and regularly reports on the organization’s progress to organizational leaders including the SVP of Operations.


This position reports to the SVP of Operations and is based near Phoenix, Arizona.


• Manage existing leaders who oversee manufacturing facilities, including Plant Managers, Maintenance, Plant Production and Warehouse.

• Oversee the Procurement and Safety functions to ensure efficiency, cost control, development, and overall standards and compliance.

• Develop and present on CAPEX necessary for plant operations and calculate estimated ROIs.

• Participate in strategic and operational governance processes of the business organization as a member of the management staff.

• Establish manufacturing policies in areas of focused improvement, lean manufacturing techniques, material usage, shipping and receiving, capacity planning and performance measures, results and rewards.

• Work closely with Operational Excellence Manager to develop clear performance metrics for each area of operations and clear communication across each area of responsibility.

• Develop business case justifications and business specific development in partnership with SVP of Operations.

Food Safety

• Drive an organizational culture of Food Safety & Quality.

• Reinforce action to prevent the occurrence of nonconformities relating to Food Safety and the Quality of the product, processes, quality system or safety system.

• Partner with Food Safety & Quality leadership relating to Food Safety and the Quality of the ingredients, processes, quality system or safety system.

• Control further processing or delivery of nonconforming product in terms of Food Safety and Quality issues until the deficiency or unsatisfactory condition has been corrected.

Operational Accounting and Finance

• Oversees Operations and Inventory accountability and controls; ensures appropriate fiscal controls are in place to meet statutory compliance and integrity production, data and systems.

• Oversees plant and functional department budgeting process; establishes timelines; provides support to management team; holds management team accountable for process.


• Manages assigned in-house support staff and supporting consultants and vendors.

• Manages the development, implementation and tracking of annual operational and assigned functional departmental budgeting process.


• Bachelor’s Degree in Engineering, Food Science or Dairy Science or Technology preferred, with proven knowledge of dairy technology, process flow and fluid mass balance.

• Previous experienced in dairy industry; Fluid Milk or Value-Added Processing strongly preferred.

• 10+ years’ progressively responsible experience in a manufacturing environment required, with at least 3 years in management; demonstrated managerial ability, negotiation and organizational skills; demonstrated ability to lead a team and achieve results; experience in budgeting, project management, supervision of accounting, operations and human resources.

• 5+ years’ experience indirectly overseeing a plant maintenance setting involving electronics, instrumentation, refrigeration, electrical and general mechanical.

• Experience working under manufacturing operating models based on KPIs, Quality Tools and Gap Closure Action Plans.

• Ability to implement fundamental TQM and Lead Manufacturing principals.

• Ability to meet production schedules with shifting priorities; demonstrated success working in a fast-paced environment.

• Understanding of basic CIP operations, functionality and chemistry.

• Strong interpersonal, verbal, and written communication skills; Ability to write business reports, business correspondence and procedure documents.


The compensation package for this position is commensurate with experience and includes an attractive base salary with annual bonus incentive and a competitive benefits package.

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