“I think that in 2020 we are seeing more of what someone called the misfits. Don’t look for the cultural fit, look for the misfit. That’s going to bring more diversity. It’s going to open your eyes to other things. And it’s hard to be the first or the first couple to do that. But I think in 50 years, we’re going to look back and say that 2020 was a big year, that a lot of that started to change”
In this special episode of This Week in Business History, host Scott W. Luton kicks off a new mini-series, where he interviews business leaders on key developments in 2020 that we’ll be talking about 100 years from now. In this episode, Scott speaks with Dyci Sfregola, Managing Director with New Generation Architects. Dyci shares a variety of observations from 2020, especially around the future of work.
Scott Luton (00:02):
Good morning, Scott Luton with you here on this week in business history, today’s shows a special one in a bit of a departure from what we normally do. I’ll be interviewing a special guest who will be giving us three key business developments that took place in 2023 things that we’ll still be talking about a hundred years from now, we’ll be discussing the future of work, cognitive load, how the empathy movement impacts the need for more change in business and society, and why it’s important to quote, bring your whole self to work in quote all that and a lot more stay tuned for an intriguing conversation right here on this week in businesses.
Scott Luton (00:56):
Good morning, Scott Luton here with you on this edition of this week in business history. Welcome to today’s show on this program, which is part of the supply chain. Now family of programming. We take a look back at the upcoming week, and then we share some of the most relevant events and milestones from years past, of course, mostly business focused with a little dab of global supply chain. And occasionally we might just throw in a good story outside of our primary realm. So I invite you to join me on this. Look back in history to identify some of the most significant leaders, companies innovations, and perhaps lessons learned in our collective business journey. Now let’s dive in to this week in business history.
Scott Luton (01:56):
And one welcome in our very special featured guests here today. We’ve got a wonderful supply chain, professional supply chain leader and entrepreneur that is well-versed in business alignment, cross functional collaboration and digital transformation. She brings a diverse background experience in a variety of sectors, big focus on change management, a graduate of the university of Georgia go dogs, where she was formally named both a UGA amazing student. And when a BTS black girls rock, our host also holds a master’s in engineering management from Kennesaw state university, and she’s managing director for new generation architects, which we’re going a little bit more about and a repeat guest here at splotch in now. So join me in welcoming DC. It’s [inaudible] DC.
Dyci Sfregola (02:43):
Yes. I was actually waiting for you to say that last name because you’re practicing. And I said in my head, he’s going to mess it up. He’s recording when it counts. You did not, you got it right.
Scott Luton (02:57):
It took me three hours of practice. This not kidding aside. I am well-known for butchering names. My family’s names, you name it. Uh, and some, sometimes my tongue and teeth just don’t, don’t play nice together.
Dyci Sfregola (03:09):
It three consonants altogether, and you have to roll the R cycle down, you know, and my husband’s Italian, even Warren Italy sometimes, you know, I’ll hear people say, is that an Italian when he has to spell it?
Scott Luton (03:21):
Well, regardless. Uh, so nice to reconnect with you and your husband, Joseph from a moment ago, uh, really have enjoyed y’all’s earlier visits with us, your husband, amongst other things as a talented musician. We’ve enjoyed that on last stream, but today we’re not only going to get know a little bit better, but also we’re going to pick your brain on three of the biggest important business developments from three of the most important business elements from where you sit for the tough year that that was 2020, but first let’s get to know you a little bit better nutshell. So tell us about new generation architects and a little about yourself.
Dyci Sfregola (03:57):
Yes. Um, so as you mentioned, I am a supply chain professional and I fell into supply chain through logistics. So I was actually doing sales for a small three PL well, the three PL was large, but the businesses, um, the customers were focused on small and medium businesses. So got my, um, my first taste of supply chain from the logistics, the operational side. And as I was going back to school for initial engineering and then pursuing my masters, um, the whole supply chain piece was just very, very interesting. Um, I think it fit perfectly with my personality and just the things that I’m naturally good at. Um, I’m a people person, but I also am very good at like prioritizing and multitasking and I get bored easily. So, um, I think there is a, I think there’s a podcast or something called supply chain is boring, which we all know is not true.
Dyci Sfregola (05:02):
Um, so it’s actually been the perfect, um, it’s been the perfect field for me and what I’ve learned in doing, um, just kind of coming into supply chain from the technology perspective of implementations, and then also being in the, I not going to say digital transformation and the technology driven business transformation, um, side of things I have really learned and truly become truly come to believe that business, all business decisions at some point manifest themselves in the supply chain. Um, so everything is connected. There are still, you know, I still talk to the clients. Um, over the years before I started new gen architects, I would sit in, um, you know, meetings and scope beans and, um, just having with different professionals across the business. And I just really started to understand how, um, there’s still a lot of silos, not only within the supply chain, but within the entire organization.
Dyci Sfregola (06:10):
Um, and how that cross-functional collaboration that you’ve mentioned is really the key to achieving business excellence and strategic goals. And that can’t happen without the supply chain without supply chain excellence. I just don’t think you can achieve strategic goals at all in any type of any type of way. So I’m biased, you know, I’m, I’m definitely open to having the debate. Um, but that’s what I believe in. That’s what we, um, that’s what we preach at, you know, Nugent architects. When we talk to companies, it’s, we, we start with the supply chain as it’s the heart of the business and the technology implementation implementations. There are really starting to reveal the opportunities and the challenges that a lot of organizations have. So we start at the supply chain to help organizations really achieve business transformation.
Scott Luton (07:06):
Love it. Uh, uh, and I’m sure you are staying really busy. I think as we were arranging this interview, uh, you, you’ve got several full plates, which is exciting,
Dyci Sfregola (07:15):
Uh, entrepreneurial great
Scott Luton (07:16):
Sounds like you’re hitting the ground running, which we’re not surprised at all. So we’ll have to bring you back on for maybe a mid-year update.
Dyci Sfregola (07:23):
Yes. You know, it’s funny. Um, when I started this company, I said, Oh, I’m going to start my own company because I want to work less. I want to make my own hours. So I am definitely making my own hours. I’m not working less. And you as an entrepreneur know that that was very naive of me, but it’s very rewarding. It’s very rewarding. It’s very fun. Um, I love my clients. I love my team members. Um, I love what I do. So it’s been very fun. Um, it’s a good, exhausted, because it’s also, you know, motherhood during COVID. I’ve got, I’ve got little Alessandro in my arms right now, so I’m sure at some point he’ll wake up, um, and hopefully he will be quiet enough so that we can continue our conversation.
Scott Luton (08:06):
We look forward to seeing Alessandra as well. So you’re definitely a lot, a lot of things you’re balancing and, and, and, you know, in a pandemic year or a non pink demic year, it, it’s never easy, but I’m so excited for you in this entrepreneurial journey and looking forward to, to track and all the big wins and, and all the change you’re driving you and an organization. So, so let’s, let’s switch gears over to the year that was 2020. And you know, this, this interview here is going to be the first of a series where we’re going to be picking the brains of some of our trusted and well-informed members of our network. And, you know, we’ve been sharing with the market for a while now. What’s, what’s important to us what sticks out to us, but really DC, I’d love for you to walk us through maybe three things that took place like business developments, um, news stories, uh, that took place in 2020 that you believe were going to be talking about. And then we’ll still be really significant and say 50, even a hundred years from now. So what, what’s the first one that comes to your mind?
Dyci Sfregola (09:05):
Um, you know, it’s funny when you first asked me that, or, you know, first say, this is what we’re going to talk about. The first thing that came to my mind was an article from the BBC that I read about cognitive load theory. And it was talking about our, um, I think the tagline was fight for focus. So, you know, people are in zoom meetings, they are, you know, at home, kids are doing zoom school also. Uh, so just the cognitive load of everything going on and why you might feel like you’re not able to focus and you’re not productive. So that’s the first thing that came to my mind. The second thing was, um, you know, black lives matter movement, a anti-racism within businesses. Um, and the also, uh, on the supply chain side specifically, you know, pushing more women leaders in supply chain, um, there were like the, the women in supply chain awards, this, uh, that are when to 2020.
Dyci Sfregola (10:07):
So we’re in January, um, a couple of months ago, but what that kind of got me thinking, um, and this probably just goes back to my innate, you know, people nature again, like as I’m a people person, um, I speak multiple languages. I actually have a friend, um, that is a psychologist. And he came up with his own personality test. I was one of his Guinea pigs, and he told me, you, he said, you travel a lot and you want to learn these languages because you want to be able to communicate and connect with the largest amount of people possible. Um, which probably also lends greatly to, you know, me loving consulting because it’s different clients. It’s a lot of different people that team members are all different, lots of different perspectives. Um, but what I think about in terms of business perspective, kind of an umbrella cognitive load theory, anti-racism, women’s equal pay, you know, women in leadership, all of that for me falls under kind of the future of work.
Dyci Sfregola (11:12):
And I think it’s very relevant that, you know, in 50 years or a hundred years, they’re going to be looking back at 2020 and really analyzing how work changed, you know, how we started to go more toward being work from home or more flexibility. Um, the nine to five, you know, how we look back and we study, um, you know, how work changed. And women went into the workplace when there was the world war and how things changed during the depression. Um, the way we work is studied. And I think that that is very relevant and will be something that, you know, people hundreds of years from now look back and say in 2020, look how much changed and look at what the catalyst was. Um, so I, I missed that
Scott Luton (12:06):
Question really quick. See if I can, um, given kind of the umbrella being that future work and your first thing is cognitive load, second things kind of future work. And there’s a bunch of things you named under the umbrella. Do you believe here as now, we’re working more, as we all know, they’ve shut down a lot of offices. You know, some technology firms have shut down over a hundred offices globally and they, they’re not going back to your point. It’s, it’s a permanent shift in so many ways, not for everybody, but for many, there also seems to be hopefully in 2020 generalization here, it’s a little more empathy, you know, w uh, we, I was talking earlier today on a remote interview, someone was warning me about their dog. That’s going to come in anytime now. And, and a wonderful development that has been embraced more like, you know, like never before, do you believe, you know, going to black lives matter, anti-racism, uh, the work we’ve got to do with equal opportunity equal pay for women, you know, th these really these issues that we’ve got to make some more traction on. Do you believe that some of the empathy that we’ve seen generally is going to help us make progress in those areas? Or do you think it’s more challenging and it’s remote environment to, to drive change in those areas?
Dyci Sfregola (13:20):
Um, I absolutely think, and this might be optimist idealist in me. Um, but I absolutely think, and that’s actually where I was going, um, with bringing your whole self to work. And I think that part of bringing your whole self to work and everyone bringing their whole self to work is the empathy piece. Um, and I, I have gotten so many compliments and messages from client resources, just from people who have, you know, seen me as a guest here on supply chain. Now whenever little Alessandra is around, um, you know, Oh my goodness. Like, it’s so great to see, you know, a black woman, so great to see a mom. It’s so great to see that you are having so much success. And that, that means that I too, so representation, um, as part of being, you know, future of work, I think that all of it is very interconnected, even though we might not see that.
Dyci Sfregola (14:20):
So the empathy piece is absolutely gonna stay. Um, I, I think that even the people who were sticklers for, we must be professional. You can not talk about that. This cannot happen. Like, you know, you must do. I even think that they’re, you know, eventually gonna get worn down. Um, and, and I mean, there are absolutely people who, you know, say this is, this is not the way it should be. I was reading, um, you know, a woman was saying that she, um, she got in trouble for having, um, I think maybe she was like, she was, um, how do I say it? I don’t want to say a risk was slapped. Um, but her boss made, yeah, her boss made a mention that while she was on camera, her hair wasn’t necessarily, you know, what he would have expected it to be really. So, so it’s just, it’s one of those things that you’re always going to have those people you’re always going to have those people, but in the grander scheme of a general movement toward more humanity at work, I absolutely think that that is part of the future of work.
Dyci Sfregola (15:31):
And I think that that’s one of the points that people are going to look back and say, you know, in 2020 people are at home with their kids and their barking dogs and their cats walking across the keyboard and the plumber coming and the doorbell ringing. And what happened is that work kept going, kept going, like businesses kept making like the world moved on, nothing happened and people didn’t go back to, you know, being afraid to be who they are at work, which I think is going to be great for, again, women minorities, underrepresented populations within the workplace, because there’s always been that. Um, and I speak from personal experience. You can read, of course, other studies have anecdotal data as a parent. There’s always that unspoken or has been, you know, that unspoken pressure of I can’t be here, but I shouldn’t say it’s because I have to pick up my kids, or I shouldn’t say it’s because my kid is sick because they’re going to think that I’m not dedicated to work.
Dyci Sfregola (16:39):
Um, or as a black woman, I shouldn’t, you know, I probably have different, different tastes and I want to do different things and I have to go along with whatever everyone else or, you know, the greater population the majority at work is doing. And I think that in 2020 we are seeing more, or we saw a more push for, um, I think I even saw someone call it the misfits. Don’t look for the cultural fit, look for the misfit, right? That’s going to bring more diversity. It’s going to open your eyes to other things. And, you know, it’s hard to be the first or the first couple to do that. But I think in, you know, 50 years, we’re going to look back and say that 2020 was a big year, that a lot of that started to change
Scott Luton (17:28):
So much that you shared there. I’d love to dive in and, and, and have a three or four hour conversation. And it’s, it’s intriguing as you described it. Clearly, you’re, you’re studying business history. Uh, you’re a student. I know you, you’re talking about that assessment that your psychologist friend did, and he loved to be around people, but clearly you’re studying people and studying businesses. And I love to hear those. All right. So if cognitive load was the first one, second one kind of future of work, did you have a third?
Dyci Sfregola (17:56):
Yeah, I would say, um, the technology, uh, and I don’t, who did I, Oh, what did, what was it called? It just came to mind right now. Cause otherwise I would have looked it up, but whatever comes after industry 4.0, um, and it wasn’t industry 5.0 or maybe it was with the COVID disruption and manufacturers. You mentioned, um, essential workers, or you mentioned everyone not being able to work from home. Right. Manufacturers and other, other essential workers. So hospitals, healthcare, the technology acceleration there. Um, so a lot of companies have been, you know, putting it off or it was on the radar, but this is now, you know, that COVID disruption made it a turning point for technology adoption because they had to understand how do we keep the factory running? How do we, I mean, supply chain was everywhere, everywhere, and still is. Um, and manufacturing is part of that.
Dyci Sfregola (19:08):
How do we keep up with demand? How do we distribute? How do we, you know, keep there was even, I remember the article about the truck drivers having to get stuff from point a to point B, but all the restaurants were closed and they go, where do we eat? Right. Or, you know, people being afraid to, you know, open in ha you know, feed them. So it became a, uh, point of survival to adopt technology and to understand all of your points of your supply chain, your manufacturing, your distribution, your planning. Um, and it was definitely something that was talked about again. I mean, I’ve been in the technology space for a supply chain. Um, I’ve done production planning, use cases for a couple of years now, but 2020 was really the year that put it on the map and on the radar for everyone, you know, people who had no idea what the word supply chain meant, or, you know, anything like that, like it was manufacturing, supply chain, the toilet paper, you know, um, that it definitely put the whatever is after industry 4.0, giving it accelerated that absolutely.
Scott Luton (20:26):
As you described that, what comes to my mind is, um, you know, systems level thinking it’s been around forever, but as you describe the ecosystem that allows supply chain or retail or even health care to happen, right. Um, the truck driving example is a great one because as we’ve seen time and time, again, especially in the, in the, in the bigger lockdown periods, um, as, as different counties have different rules, different States have different rules. Of course, trucks are going to driving across to all of that. And they had to react differently based on what that local regulatory agency was putting in place. And, uh, there’s so many different takeaways there for greater supply chain, being able to look upstream and downstream and know that, you know, you, what you do here is going to have that ripple effect. And, and that was certainly alive and well in 2020.
Dyci Sfregola (21:15):
Yes. The supply network versus supply chain. I think I saw that a lot in 2020, um, ASC, um, came out with their digital capabilities model, which I love because very quickly you click it and you see, you know, supplier collaboration. And if you embark on that, uh, you know, uh, a project on that journey, then what is, you know, all of the other pieces that are connected there. Um, so that was definitely, uh, supply network was a buzz word, at least, you know, I dunno for everyone in my network,
Scott Luton (21:51):
There is Alejandro, how are you is he’s awake? And,
Dyci Sfregola (21:56):
Um, I think he’s trying to figure it out. He’s trying to figure out if he’s going to wake up for nut. Um, it’s good to have those options, isn’t it? Yeah. I miss those. I wish I wish, you know, I started at seven 30 today and I told my husband, well, I had my first meeting at seven 30 today and yesterday I told my husband, Oh, I’m starting late tomorrow.
Scott Luton (22:19):
Hey, um, let’s wrap so much there. I appreciate you sharing, you know, three, um, three things that really stood out to you. Trends, areas, concerns, developments. I tend to agree with you on all three of those things, that cognitive load in and of itself, just here recently, we had a zoom call with, um, a partner of ours and we just decided to leave the video off, you know, just have a good old fashioned conference call. And it was almost like a, a breath of fresh air, but nonetheless, how can folks connect with you? We’ll make sure DCR listeners can connect with you and all the cool things you’re doing at a new generation architects.
Dyci Sfregola (22:54):
Yes. Um, you can find me on LinkedIn, DC and DC mans. I, I keep my maiden name up there also because it’s easier than Sprigle up. So if you search DC mans, um, you’ll find me and, uh, new gen architects, um, is the business page. So, um, it doesn’t go directly to me, but the message will get filtered or not. Filtered will get passed on to me. It’s also email@example.com, just my first name. And I, um, will reply. I always reply. Well, that’s not true. I try to reply. I took that back and very quickly, I don’t always reply, but I do make it a point to try to reply. Um, and you know, cognitive load and focus, fight for focus. Um, I just recently, you know, said to myself, you can’t reply to everyone as soon as they send you a message. It is okay to wait until you have the mental capacity and a clear mind to send a coherent message back to this person.
Scott Luton (24:03):
I like that. I think pausing and, and, and, you know, finding, finding some time to re to reply and respond, not just to people, but all things, you know, at the right time when you’ve had a chance to, to think about it. And, and to your point, give a measured response. Uh, so I love that. And I also love it before we even went live here today. Uh, one of your goals this weekend was to find, find some time to disconnect, right? Yes. And we’ll look forward to reconnecting with you again real soon. Thanks so much for your time.
Dyci Sfregola (24:34):
Yes, absolutely. It’s always great talking to you, Scott.
Scott Luton (24:37):
Sure. Our audience, hopefully you’ve enjoyed this conversation here with DC. It’s fray Gullah, and make sure you check out we’re going to have her LinkedIn profile on the show notes. We’ll have a link to her or her organization, her new venture on the show notes as well. And as she mentioned, reach out to her, especially on LinkedIn. Uh she’ll in due time, she’ll get back to you, but Hey, hopefully you also enjoyed what she talked about in terms of some of the key takeaways in 2020, that we’re gonna be talking about 50 years, a hundred years, maybe a thousand years from now, who knows, but regardless, uh, tell us what your observations are. You can reach firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know what you’re thinking on behalf of our entire entire team here. Scott Luton signing off challenging you. Like we always challenge all of our team members here every single day. Do good. Give forward, be the change that’s needed on that note. We’ll see you next time here on this week in business history. Thanks. Bye-bye.
Dyci Sfregola is a Supply Chain professional well-versed in organizational and departmental alignment and cross-functional collaboration. She is knowledgeable in digital transformation including business process and technology maturity/readiness assessments and organizational change management & user adoption. She has direct industry experience in sales and marketing, logistics and transportation and holds a certification as a Certified Supply Chain Professional from APICS/ASCM. Dyci is also a certified Anaplan Model Builder and trainer. Her technical experience spans several tools including Anaplan, Kinaxis and Salesforce. Her diverse background and focus on change management and process helps clients realize ROI of their technology transformation efforts.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Adrian Purtill serves as Business Development Manager at Vector Global Logistics, where he consults with importers and exporters in various industries to match their specific shipping requirements with the most effective supply chain solutions. Vector Global Logistics is an asset-free, multi-modal logistics company that provides exceptional sea freight, air freight, truck, rail, general logistic services and consulting for our clients. Our highly trained and professional team is committed to providing creative and effective solutions, always exceeding our customer’s expectations and fostering long-term relationships. With more than 20+ years of experience in both strategy consulting and logistics, Vector Global Logistics is your best choice to proactively minimize costs while having an exceptional service level.
Joshua is a student from Institute of Technology and Higher Education of Monterrey Campus Guadalajara in Communication and Digital Media. His experience ranges from Plug and Play México, DearDoc, and Nissan México creating unique social media marketing campaigns and graphics design. Joshua helps to amplify the voice of supply chain here at Supply Chain Now by assisting in graphic design, content creation, asset logistics, and more. In his free time he likes to read and write short stories as well as watch movies and television series.
Data Analytics and Metrics Intern
Patch is a fourth-year Management Information Systems and Marketing major at the University of Georgia. He is working with Supply Chain Now in data analysis, finding insights and best practices to increase company efficiency. Patch previously worked as an intern at AnswerRocket, a data analytics company where he gained invaluable knowledge about analytics, webpage SEO and B2B marketing best practices. In his free time, he enjoys playing tennis, going to concerts, and watching movies.
Vicki has a long history of rising to challenges and keeping things up and running. First, she supported her family’s multi-million dollar business as controller for 12 years, beginning at the age of 17. Then, she worked as an office manager and controller for a wholesale food broker. But her biggest feat? Serving as the chief executive officer of her household, while her entrepreneur husband travelled the world extensively. She fed, nurtured, chaperoned, and chauffeured three daughters all while running a newsletter publishing business and remaining active in her community as a Stephen’s Minister, Sunday school teacher, school volunteer, licensed realtor and POA Board president (a title she holds to this day). A force to be reckoned with in the office, you might think twice before you meet Vicki on the tennis court! When she’s not keeping the books balanced at Supply Chain Now or playing tennis matches, you can find Vicki spending time with her husband Greg, her 4 fur babies, gardening, cleaning (yes, she loves to clean!) and learning new things.
Founder, CEO, & Host
As the founder and CEO of Supply Chain Now, you might say Scott is the voice of supply chain – but he’s too much of a team player to ever claim such a title. One thing’s for sure: he’s a tried and true supply chain expert. With over 15 years of experience in the end-to-end supply chain, Scott’s insights have appeared in major publications including The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and CNN. He has also been named a top industry influencer by Thinkers360, ISCEA and more.
From 2009-2011, Scott was president of APICS Atlanta, and he continues to lead initiatives that support both the local business community and global industry. A United States Air Force Veteran, Scott has also regularly led efforts to give back to his fellow veteran community since his departure from active duty in 2002.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Allison Krache Giddens has been with Win-Tech, a veteran-owned small business and aerospace precision machine shop, for 15 years, recently buying the company from her mentor and Win-Tech’s Founder, Dennis Winslow. She and her business partner, John Hudson now serve as Co-Presidents, leading the 33-year old company through the pandemic.
She holds undergraduate degrees in psychology and criminal justice from the University of Georgia, a Masters in Conflict Management from Kennesaw State University, a Masters in Manufacturing from Georgia Institute of Technology, and a Certificate of Finance from the University of Georgia. She also holds certificates in Google Analytics, event planning, and Cybersecurity Risk Management from Harvard online. Allison founded the Georgia Chapter of Women in Manufacturing and currently serves as Treasurer. She serves on the Chattahoochee Technical College Foundation Board as its Secretary, the liveSAFE Resources Board of Directors as Resource Development Co-Chair, and on the Leadership Cobb Alumni Association Board as Membership Chair and is also a member of Cobb Executive Women. She is on the Board for the Cobb Chamber of Commerce’s Northwest Area Councils. Allison runs The Dave Krache Foundation, a non-profit that helps pay sports fees for local kids in need.
Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain Now and TECHquila Sunrise
When rapid-growth technology companies, venture capital and private equity firms are looking for advisory, they call Greg – a founder, board director, advisor and catalyst of disruptive B2B technology and supply chain. An insightful visionary, Greg guides founders, investors and leadership teams in creating breakthroughs to gain market exposure and momentum – increasing overall company esteem and valuation.
Greg is a founder himself, creating Blue Ridge Solutions, a Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader in cloud-native supply chain applications, and bringing to market Curo, a field service management solution. He has also held leadership roles with Servigistics (PTC) and E3 Corporation (JDA/Blue Yonder). As a principal and host at Supply Chain Now, Greg helps guide the company’s strategic direction, hosts industry leader discussions, community livestreams, and all in addition to executive producing and hosting his original YouTube channel and podcast, TEChquila Sunrise.
Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain is Boring
Talk about world-class: Chris is one of the few professionals in the world to hold CPIM-F, CLTD-F and CSCP-F designations from ASCM/APICS. He’s also the APICS coach – and our resident Supply Chain Doctor. When he’s not hosting programs with Supply Chain Now, he’s sharing supply chain knowledge on the APICS Coach Youtube channel or serving as a professional education instructor for the Georgia Tech Supply Chain & Logistic Institute’s Supply Chain Management (SCM) program and University of Tennessee-Chattanooga Center for Professional Education courses.
Chris earned a BS in Industrial Engineering from Bradley University, an MBA with emphasis in Industrial Psychology from the University of West Florida, and is a Doctoral in Supply Chain Management candidate.
Host of TEKTOK
If there’s one Supply Chain ‘Pro to Know,’ it’s Karin. She’s earned the title for three years and counting – culminating in her designation as the “2020 Supply Chain Pro to Know of the Year.” Karin is also an award-winning digital supply chain, business strategy and technology marketing executive. A sought-after speaker at industry conferences, you will find her quoted in a variety of supply chain publications – and active in forums like ASCM/APICS and CSCMP.
With more than 25 years of supply chain experience, Karin spearheaded strategy and marketing for Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader and IDC MarketScape Leader, Logility. Karin has the heart of a teacher and has helped nearly 1,000 customers transform their businesses and tell their success stories. Today, she is a sought-after advisor helping high-growth B2B technology companies with everything from defining their unique value propositions to introducing new products and capturing customer success. No matter their goals, she makes sure her clients have actionable marketing strategies that help grow global revenue, market share and profitability.
Host of Digital Transformers
Kevin L. Jackson is a globally recognized Thought Leader, Industry Influencer and Founder/Author of the award winning “Cloud Musings” blog. He has also been recognized as a “Top 5G Influencer” (Onalytica 2019, Radar 2020), a “Top 50 Global Digital Transformation Thought Leader” (Thinkers 360 2019) and provides strategic consulting and integrated social media services to AT&T, Intel, Broadcom, Ericsson and other leading companies. Mr. Jackson’s commercial experience includes Vice President J.P. Morgan Chase, Worldwide Sales Executive for IBM and SAIC (Engility) Director Cloud Solutions. He has served on teams that have supported digital transformation projects for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the US Intelligence Community. Kevin’s formal education includes a MS Computer Engineering from Naval Postgraduate School; MA National Security & Strategic Studies from Naval War College; and a BS Aerospace Engineering from the United States Naval Academy. Internationally recognizable firms that have sponsored articles authored by him include Cisco, Microsoft, Citrix and IBM. Books include “Click to Transform” (Leaders Press, 2020), “Architecting Cloud Computing Solutions” (Packt, 2018), and “Practical Cloud Security: A Cross Industry View” (Taylor & Francis, 2016). He also delivers online training through Tulane University, O’Reilly Media, LinkedIn Learning, and Pluralsight. Mr. Jackson retired from the U.S. Navy in 1994, earning specialties in Space Systems Engineering, Carrier Onboard Delivery Logistics and carrier-based Airborne Early Warning and Control. While active, he also served with the National Reconnaissance Office, Operational Support Office, providing tactical support to Navy and Marine Corps forces worldwide.
Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español
Enrique serves as Managing Director at Vector Global Logistics and believes we all have a personal responsibility to change the world. He is hard working, relationship minded and pro-active. Enrique trusts that the key to logistics is having a good and responsible team that truly partners with the clients and does whatever is necessary to see them succeed. He is a proud sponsor of Vector’s unique results-based work environment and before venturing into logistics he worked for the Boston Consulting Group (BCG). During his time at BCG, he worked in different industries such as Telecommunications, Energy, Industrial Goods, Building Materials, and Private Banking. His main focus was always on the operations, sales, and supply chain processes, with case focus on, logistics, growth strategy, and cost reduction. Prior to joining BCG, Enrique worked for Grupo Vitro, a Mexican glass manufacturer, for five years holding different positions from sales and logistics manager to supply chain project leader in charge of five warehouses in Colombia.
He has an MBA from The Wharton School of Business and a BS, in Mechanical Engineer from the Technologico de Monterrey in Mexico. Enrique’s passions are soccer and the ocean, and he also enjoys traveling, getting to know new people, and spending time with his wife and two kids, Emma and Enrique.
Host of Dial P for Procurement
Kelly is the Owner and Managing Director of Buyers Meeting Point and MyPurchasingCenter. She has been in procurement since 2003, starting as a practitioner and then as the Associate Director of Consulting at Emptoris. She has covered procurement news, events, publications, solutions, trends, and relevant economics at Buyers Meeting Point since 2009. Kelly is also the General Manager at Art of Procurement and Business Survey Chair for the ISM-New York Report on Business. Kelly has her MBA from Babson College as well as an MS in Library and Information Science from Simmons College and she has co-authored three books: ‘Supply Market Intelligence for Procurement Professionals’, ‘Procurement at a Crossroads’, and ‘Finance Unleashed’.
Host, Veteran Voices
Mary Kate Soliva is transitioning from active duty in the US Army. She is currently in the Doctor of Criminal Justice program at Saint Leo University. She is passionate about combating human trafficking and has spent the last decade conducting training for military personnel and the local community.
Jeff Miller is the host of Supply Chain Now’s Supply Chain is the Business. Jeff is a digital business transformation and supply chain advisor with deep expertise in Industry 4.0, ERP, PLM, SCM, IoT, AR and related technologies. Through more than 25 years of industry and consulting experience, he has worked with many of the world’s leading product and service companies to achieve their strategic business and supply chain goals, creating durable business value for organizations at the forefront of technology and business practices. Jeff is the managing director for North America at Transition Technologies PSC, a global solution integrator, and the founder and managing principal of BTV Advisors, a firm that helps companies secure business transformation value from digital supply chain technologies and their breakthrough capabilities.
Chief Marketing Officer
Amanda is a marketing veteran and entrepreneur with over 15 years of experience across a variety of industries and organizations including Von Maur, Anthropologie, AmericasMart Atlanta, and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. In 2016, Amanda founded and grew the Magnolia Marketing Group into a successful digital media firm, and now she develops modern marketing strategies, social campaigns, innovative operational processes, and implements creative content initiatives for Supply Chain Now. But that’s just the beginning of her supply chain impact. Amanda also served as the VP of Information Systems and Webmaster on the Board of Directors for APICS Savannah for several years, and is the face behind the scenes welcoming you to every Supply Chain Now livestream! She was also recently selected as one of the Top 100 Women in Supply Chain by Supply Chain Digest and IBM. When she’s not leading the Supply Chain Now marketing team, you can find Amanda with her and her husband Scott’s three kids, in the kitchen cooking, or reading.
Business Development Manager
Clay is passionate about two things: supply chain and the marketing that goes into it. Recently graduated with a degree in marketing at the University of Georgia, Clay got his start as a journalism major and inaugural member of the Owl’s football team at Kennesaw State University – but quickly saw tremendous opportunity in the Terry College of Business. He’s already putting his education to great use at Supply Chain Now, assisting with everything from sales and brand strategy to media production. Clay has contributed to initiatives such as our leap into video production, the guest blog series, and boosting social media presence, and after nearly two years in Supply Chain Now’s Marketing Department, Clay now heads up partnership and sales initiatives with the help of the rest of the Supply Chain Now sales team.
Trisha is new to the supply chain industry – but not to podcasting. She’s an experienced podcast manager and virtual assistant who also happens to have 20 years of experience as an elementary school teacher. It’s safe to say, she’s passionate about helping people, and she lives out that passion every day with the Supply Chain Now team, contributing to scheduling and podcast production.
Host of Dial P for Procurement
Billy Taylor is a Proven Business Excellence Practitioner and Leadership Guru with over 25 years leading operations for a Fortune 500 company, Goodyear. He is also the CEO of LinkedXL (Excellence), a Business Operating Systems Architecting Firm dedicated to implementing sustainable operating systems that drive sustainable results. Taylor’s achievements in the industry have made him a Next Generational Lean pacesetter with significant contributions.
An American business executive, Taylor has made a name for himself as an innovative and energetic industry professional with an indispensable passion for his craft of operational excellence. His journey started many years ago and has worked with renowned corporations such as The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. (GT) leading multi-site operations. With over 3 decades of service leading North America operations, he is experienced in a deeply rooted process driven approach in customer service, process integrity for sustainability.
A disciple of continuous improvement, Taylor’s love for people inspires commitment to helping others achieve their full potential. He is a dynamic speaker and hosts "The Winning Link," a popular podcast centered on business and leadership excellence with the #1 rated Supply Chain Now Network. As a leadership guru, Taylor has earned several invitations to universities, international conferences, global publications, and the U.S. Army to demonstrate how to achieve and sustain effective results through cultural acceptance and employee ownership. Leveraging the wisdom of his business acumen, strong influence as a speaker and podcaster Taylor is set to release "The Winning Link" book under McGraw Hill publishing in 2022. The book is a how-to manual to help readers understand the management of business interactions while teaching them how to Deine, Align, and Execute Winning in Business.
A servant leader, Taylor, was named by The National Diversity Council as one of the Top 100 Diversity Officers in the country in 2021. He features among Oklahoma's Most Admired CEOs and maintains key leadership roles with the Executive Advisory Board for The Shingo Institute "The Nobel Prize of Operations" and The Association of Manufacturing Excellence (AME); two world-leading organizations for operational excellence, business development, and cultural learning. He is also an Independent Director for the M-D Building Products Board, a proud American manufacturer of quality products since 1920.
Social Media Manager
My name is Chantel King and I am the Social Media Specialist at Supply Chain Now. My job is to make sure our audience is engaged and educated on the abundant amount of information the supply chain industry has to offer.
Social Media and Communications has been my niche ever since I graduated from college at The Academy of Art University in San Francisco. No, I am not a West Coast girl. I was born and raised in New Jersey, but my travel experience goes way beyond the garden state. My true passion is in creating editorial and graphic content that influences others to be great in whatever industry they are in. I’ve done this by working with lifestyle, financial, and editorial companies by providing resources to enhance their businesses.
Another passion of mine is trying new things. Whether it’s food, an activity, or a sport. I would like to say that I am an adventurous Taurus that never shies away from a new quest or challenge.
Lori is currently completing a degree in marketing with an emphasis in digital marketing at the University of Georgia. When she’s not supporting the marketing efforts at Supply Chain Now, you can find her at music festivals – or working toward her dream goal of a fashion career. Lori is involved in many extracurricular activities and appreciates all the learning experiences UGA has brought her.
Sales and Marketing Coordinator
Katherine is a marketing professional and MBA candidate who strives to unite her love of people with a passion for positive experiences. Having a diverse background, which includes nonprofit work with digital marketing and start-ups, she serves as a leader who helps people live their most creative lives by cultivating community, order, collaboration, and respect. With equal parts creativity and analytics, she brings a unique skill set which fosters refining, problem solving, and connecting organizations with their true vision. In her free time, you can usually find her looking for her cup of coffee, playing with her puppy Charlie, and dreaming of her next road trip.
Ben Harris is the Director of Supply Chain Ecosystem Expansion for the Metro Atlanta Chamber. Ben comes to the Metro Atlanta Chamber after serving as Senior Manager, Market Development for Manhattan Associates. There, Ben was responsible for developing Manhattan’s sales pipeline and overall Americas supply chain marketing strategy. Ben oversaw market positioning, messaging and campaign execution to build awareness and drive new pipeline growth. Prior to joining Manhattan, Ben spent four years with the Georgia Department of Economic Development’s Center of Innovation for Logistics where he played a key role in establishing the Center as a go-to industry resource for information, support, partnership building, and investment development. Additionally, he became a key SME for all logistics and supply chain-focused projects. Ben began his career at Page International, Inc. where he drove continuous improvement in complex global supply chain operations for a wide variety of businesses and Fortune 500 companies. An APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP), Ben holds an Executive Master’s degree in Business Administration (EMBA) and bachelor’s degree in International Business (BBA) from the Terry College at the University of Georgia.
Host, The Freight Insider
Prior to joining TeamOne Logistics, Page Siplon served as the Executive Director of the Georgia Center of Innovation for Logistics, the State’s leading consulting resource for fueling logistics industry growth and global competitiveness. For over a decade, he directly assisted hundreds of companies to overcome challenges and capitalize on opportunities related to the movement of freight. During this time, Siplon was also appointed to concurrently serve the State of Georgia as Director of the larger Centers of Innovation Program, in which he provided executive leadership and vision for all six strategic industry-focused Centers. As a frequently requested keynote speaker, Siplon is called upon to address a range of audiences on unique aspects of technology, workforce, and logistics. This often includes topics of global and domestic logistics trends, supply chain visibility, collaboration, and strategic planning. He has also been quoted as an industry expert in publications such as Forbes, Journal of Commerce, Fortune, NPR, Wall Street Journal, Reuters, American Express, DC Velocity, Area Development Magazine, Site Selection Magazine, Inbound Logistics, Modern Material Handling, and is frequently a live special guest on SiriusXM’s Road Dog Radio Show. Siplon is an active industry participant, recognized by DC Velocity Magazine as a “2012 Logistics Rainmaker” which annually identifies the top-ten logistics professionals in the Nation; and named a “Pro to Know” by Supply & Demand Executive Magazine in 2014. Siplon was also selected by Georgia Trend Magazine as one of the “Top 100 Most Influential Georgians” for 2013, 2014, and 2015. He also serves various industry leadership roles at both the State and Federal level. Governor Nathan Deal nominated Siplon to represent Georgia on a National Supply Chain Competitiveness Advisory Committee, where he was appointed to a two-year term by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce and was then appointed to serve as its vice-chairman. At the State level, he was selected by then-Governor Sonny Perdue to serve as lead consultant on the Commission for New Georgia’s Freight and Logistics Task Force. In this effort, Siplon led a Private Sector Advisory Committee with invited executives from a range of private sector stakeholders including UPS, Coca-Cola, The Home Depot, Delta Airlines, Georgia Pacific, CSX, and Norfolk Southern. Siplon honorably served a combined 12 years in the United States Marine Corps and the United States Air Force. During this time, he led the integration of encryption techniques and deployed cryptographic devices for tactically secure voice and data platforms in critical ground-to-air communication systems. This service included support for all branches of the Department of Defense, multiple federal security agencies, and aiding NASA with multiple Space Shuttle launches. Originally from New York, Siplon received both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in electrical and computer engineering with a focus on digital signal processing from the Georgia Institute of Technology. He earned an associate’s degree in advanced electronic systems from the Air Force College and completed multiple military leadership academies in both the Marines and Air Force. Siplon currently lives in Cumming, Georgia (north of Atlanta), with his wife Jan, and two children Thomas (19) and Lily (15).
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Kristi Porter is VP of Sales and Marketing at Vector Global Logistics, a company that is changing the world through supply chain. In her role, she oversees all marketing efforts and supports the sales team in doing what they do best. In addition to this role, she is the Chief Do-Gooder at Signify, which assists nonprofits and social impact companies through copywriting and marketing strategy consulting. She has almost 20 years of professional experience, and loves every opportunity to help people do more good.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Kevin Brown is the Director of Business Development for Vector Global Logistics. He has a dedicated interest in Major Account Management, Enterprise Sales, and Corporate Leadership. He offers 25 years of exceptional experience and superior performance in the sales of Logistics, Supply Chain, and Transportation Management. Kevin is a dynamic, high-impact, sales executive and corporate leader who has consistently exceeded corporate goals. He effectively coordinates multiple resources to solution sell large complex opportunities while focusing on corporate level contacts across the enterprise. His specialties include targeting and securing key accounts by analyzing customer’s current business processes and developing solutions to meet their corporate goals. Connect with Kevin on LinkedIn.
Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol
Sofia Rivas Herrera is a Mexican Industrial Engineer from Tecnologico de Monterrey class 2019. Upon graduation, she earned a scholarship to study MIT’s Graduate Certificate in Logistics and Supply Chain Management and graduated as one of the Top 3 performers of her class in 2020. She also has a multicultural background due to her international academic experiences at Singapore Management University and Kühne Logistics University in Hamburg. Sofia self-identifies as a Supply Chain enthusiast & ambassador sharing her passion for the field in her daily life.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Jose Manuel Irarrazaval es parte del equipo de Vector Global Logistics Chile. José Manuel es un gerente experimentado con experiencia en finanzas corporativas, fusiones y adquisiciones, financiamiento y reestructuración, inversión directa y financiera, tanto en Chile como en el exterior. José Manuel tiene su MBA de la Universidad de Pennsylvania- The Wharton School. Conéctese con Jose Manuel en LinkedIn.
Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol
Demo Perez started his career in 1997 in the industry by chance when a relative asked him for help for two just weeks putting together an operation for FedEx Express at the Colon Free Zone, an area where he was never been but accepted the challenge. Worked in all roles possible from a truck driver to currier to a sales representative, helped the brand introduction, market share growth and recognition in the Colon Free Zone, at the end of 1999 had the chance to meet and have a chat with Fred Smith ( FedEx CEO), joined another company in 2018 who took over the FedEx operations as Operations and sales manager, in 2004 accepted the challenge from his company to leave the FedEx operations and business to take over the operation and business of DHL Express, his major competitor and rival so couldn’t say no, by changing completely its operation model in the Free Zone. In 2005 started his first entrepreneurial journey by quitting his job and joining two friends to start a Freight Forwarding company. After 8 months was recruited back by his company LSP with the General Manager role with the challenge of growing the company and make it fully capable warehousing 3PL. By 2009 joined CSCMP and WERC and started his journey of learning and growing his international network and high-level learning. In 2012 for the first time joined a local association ( the Panama Maritime Chamber) and worked in the country’s first Logistics Strategy plan, joined and lead other associations ending as president of the Panama Logistics Council in 2017. By finishing his professional mission at LSP with a company that was 8 times the size it was when accepted the role as GM with so many jobs generated and several young professionals coached, having great financial results, took the decision to move forward and start his own business from scratch by the end of 2019. with a friend and colleague co-founded IPL Group a company that started as a boutique 3PL and now is gearing up for the post-Covid era by moving to the big leagues.
Host, Supply Chain Now
The founder of Logistics Executive Group, Kim Winter delivers 40 years of executive leadership experience spanning Executive Search & Recruitment, Leadership Development, Executive Coaching, Corporate Advisory, Motivational Speaking, Trade Facilitation and across the Supply Chain, Logistics, 3PL, E-commerce, Life Science, Cold Chain, FMCG, Retail, Maritime, Defence, Aviation, Resources, and Industrial sectors. Operating from the company’s global offices, he is a regular contributor of thought leadership to industry and media, is a professional Master of Ceremonies, and is frequently invited to chair international events.
He is a Board member of over a dozen companies throughout APAC, India, and the Middle East, a New Zealand citizen, he holds formal resident status in Australia and the UAE, and is the Australia & New Zealand representative for the UAE Government-owned Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA), the Middle East’s largest Economic Free Zone.
A triathlete and ex-professional rugby player, Kim is a qualified (IECL Sydney) executive coach and the Founder / Chairman of the successful not for profit humanitarian organization, Oasis Africa (www. oasisafrica.org.au), which has provided freedom from poverty through education to over 8000 mainly orphaned children in East Africa’s slums. Kim holds an MBA and BA from Massey & Victoria Universities (NZ).
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Nick Roemer has had a very diverse and extensive career within design and sales over the last 15 years stretching from China, Dubai, Germany, Holland, UK, and the USA. In the last 5 years, Nick has developed a hawk's eye for sustainable tech and the human-centric marketing and sales procedures that come with it. With his far-reaching and strong network within the logistics industry, Nick has been able to open new avenues and routes to market within major industries in the USA and the UAE. Nick lives by the ethos, “Give more than you take." His professional mission is to make the logistics industry leaner, cleaner and greener.
Sales Support Intern
Alex is pursuing a Marketing degree and a Certificate in Legal Studies at the University of Georgia. As a dual citizen of both the US and UK; Alex has studied abroad at University College London and is passionate about travel and international business. Through her coursework at the Terry College of Business, Alex has gained valuable skills in digital marketing, analytics, and professional selling. She joined Supply Chain Now as a Sales Support Intern where she assists the team by prospecting and qualifying new business partners.