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Robinson-Berry promoted, leaving Boeing S.C.

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Joan Robinson-Berry, vice president and general manager of Boeing S.C., speaks to employees during an event for the first 787-10 entering final assembly in December 2016. Robinson-Berry will be moving to the Boeing Global Services division. (Photo/Andy Owens)

Joan Robinson-Berry, the head of Boeing South Carolina, will be leaving her position after two years for another role within the Boeing Co., according to a company spokesman.

Robinson-Berry was promoted in April to vice president of engineering, maintenance and modifications for Boeing Global Services, spokesman Victor Scott said in an email.

The Global Services division provides numerous services — including supply chain, analytics, and equipment modifications and maintenance — to Boeing’s defense, space and commercial customers. The Dallas-based operation has more than 20,000 employees in 70 countries, according to the company website.

Boeing has not announced who will be the new site leader for the nearly 7,000-employee Lowcountry aerospace campus.

“Mrs. Robinson-Berry has done an excellent job of leading Boeing South Carolina (BSC) through several major events during her time here at BSC,” a company statement said. “Robinson-Berry has begun her transition from BSC as we complete the succession planning process.”

Robinson-Berry, who has been with Boeing for more than 30 years, assumed the helm of the North Charleston aerospace campus in June 2016, replacing Vice President Beverly Wyse.

Wyse, who took over when Jack Jones retired, served in the role for a little more than a year before transitioning to the presidency of Boeing’s Seattle-based Shared Services Group.

Over the past two years, Robinson-Berry oversaw the opening of the on-site Dreamliner paint shop, a visit from President Donald Trump, and the rollout, first flight and first customer delivery of the new 787-10 Dreamliner.

She led the plant during a 2016 production rate increase — from 10 planes produced each month between the North Charleston and Everett, Wash., sites to 12 — and prepared the site for its upcoming rate increase to 14 planes per month next year.

She also dealt with two union elections in as many years. Last year, more than 2,800 production workers voted overwhelmingly not to unionize. Last month, nearly 200 flight line workers voted in another election, with the majority in favor of representation by the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers.

In addition to Dreamliner operations, Robinson-Berry was responsible for the entire Boeing S.C. footprint, including the research and development lab to create technologies for Boeing programs; the propulsion center that produces parts for the 737 Max and 777X; the interiors facility that produces Dreamliner seats and luggage bins; and the new engineering, IT and design center.

When she first accepted the position at Boeing S.C., she said: “I really want to focus on what our mission is today: to build the best 787s that we can. ... I just need to ensure we continue to have the strong discipline and all of the innovation and quality put in place to ensure that we are going to be competitive.”

Reach Liz Segrist at 843-849-3119.

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