Director, Purdue University Technical Assistance Program, and
Associate Vice Provost for Engagement
B.S. Engineering Science, 1972, Purdue University
M.S. Management, 1973, Purdue University
Ph.D. Industrial Engineering, 1999, Purdue University
After graduation from Purdue University in 1973, McKinnis spent thirteen years in industry. At Landis & Gyr (now a division of Siemens) in Lafayette, Indiana, he was responsible for the development and implementation of manufacturing and material control systems and later became production superintendent. At the Lafayette Caterpillar large engine plant he worked in purchasing and inventory management, implementing just-in-time materials systems. At Thermotron Industries, an environmental test chamber defense contractor in Holland, Michigan, he served on the senior management team as materials manager.
McKinnis joined the Purdue University Technical Assistance Program as associate director in 1986 and became director in July 2000. He has worked with industry, government, and the university to develop innovative methods of assisting Indiana industry with a broad range of technical needs. He has worked with Indiana manufacturing companies to establish 5,500 technical assistance projects and 800 summer internships. Long-term collaborative relationships have been established between the university and many Indiana companies. He also serves as chairperson of the annual High Tech Job Fair for Indiana Companies, an event that has connected employers with Purdue students since 1999.
During his career, McKinnis has been involved in a number of professional activities. He is certified at the fellow level in the American Production and Inventory Control Society (APICS). As a member of the National Association for Management and Technical Assistance Centers (NAMTAC), he served on various committees and has addressed three conferences on technology transfer. The Technical Assistance Program received a “project of the year award” from NAMTAC in 1989. He was a founding member of the American Industrial Extension Alliance (AIEA), and currently serves as president. He served on the planning committee for TechForce 2000 and 2001, two highly successful high tech workforce development conferences sponsored by the Indiana Information Technology Association. He is a member of the Indiana Economic Development Association, the advisory board of the Greater Lafayette Progress Industry Support Center, the advisory board of the Purdue Continuing Engineering Education program, and is past chairman of the board of Perry Chemical and Manufacturing Company, Lafayette, Indiana.
PUBLICATIONS AND TEACHING
McKinnis, D. R., K. T. McNamara, T. Kuczek, and G. Salvendy. (2001) “The Instructional Benefits from Faculty Participation in Industrial Outreach.” Journal of Engineering Education. Vol. 90, No. 3: 429-435.
Law, G. T., D. R. McKinnis, S. M. Ward, D. P. DeWitt, K. V. Smith, and B. M. Hillberry. "Two Models of Technology Transfer at Purdue University," Engineering Education, May/June 1989.
Instructor, "Production Planning and Control.” Indiana Vocational Technical School at Lafayette, Indiana, 1977 and 1978.