Supply Chain Now
Episode 1269

Working in this industry is a very intense job. We sometimes spend more time with the people we work with than our own families. So this is a huge supply chain family for us all over the world! So having this celebration for this kind of partnership, friendship, and family is important.

-Enrique Alvarez

Episode Summary

Let the National Supply Chain Day celebrations continue! On Monday, April 29th, Supply Chain Now celebrated National Supply Chain Day with a very special live stream. Hosts Scott Luton and Mary Kate Love were joined by Enrique Alvarez from Vector Global Logistics, and discussed the importance of celebrating the people of the supply chain industry, highlighting the various roles and responsibilities that keep the global supply chain running.

Listen in as they also discussed trends in the industry, including the rise of AI, sustainability, and cybersecurity, and highlighted the creation of new jobs and career opportunities in the industry, emphasizing the need for continuous learning and adaptation.

Join us for this episode and help us continue to show gratitude and empathy to our incredible supply chain professionals and stay tuned for more programming for National Supply Chain Day in the future!

Episode Transcript

Intro/Outro (00:03):

Welcome to Supply Chain. Now the voice of global supply chain supply chain now focuses on the best in the business for our worldwide audience, the people, the technologies, the best practices, and today’s critical issues, the challenges and opportunities. Stay tuned to hear from Those Making Global Business happen right here on supply chain. Now.

Scott Luton (00:32):

Hey everybody. Good morning, good afternoon, good evening, wherever you may be. It’s Scott Luton and your friend Mary Kate. Love with you here on Supply Chain. Now welcome to today’s special live stream. As of course we celebrate National Supply Chain Day. Mary Kate. Really big day today, huh?

Mary Kate Love (00:49):

Big day. We’ve been looking forward to this day for a while because we’re kind of bringing back national Supply chain Day. We celebrate together in 2020, which was a crazy year, April, 2020 when we celebrated, but today is really going to be a fun show because we’re taking a step back and we’re really celebrating the people of supply chain, right? So we’re going to see some snapshots of teams across the country. We’re going to have Enrique Alvarez from Vector Global Logistics join us, who’s always great, has great perspective, and then we’ll even talk about some trends in the industry and what’s in the future for supply chain. So this will be a fun show with lots of banter back and forth.

Scott Luton (01:31):

It sure will folks, and watch out because we’re just getting started with taking National Supply Chain day and celebrating this global industry that it is to all new heights. I’m really excited about what Mary Kate love and whole team is doing here. By the way, Enrique Alvarez is almost as cool as the John Wayne and Global supply chain going on. Jake Barr, Jake, great to have you here. Looking forward to your comments as well. Alright, so folks, let’s do this. Two quick reminders. First off, Scott, remember when you go live, right? Don’t depend on the music. That’s not a dependable signal, but kidding aside, let us know what you think. Share your comments throughout this live discussion. And of course, if you enjoy today’s show, we’re really celebrating our industry folks and all the wonderful people, be sure to share it with a friend or your network.

(02:18):

So I want to get to work. I want to start with a little bit about our purpose and vision collectively, Mary Kay, us and the whole team here, including what is our why? This is easy for us. I think National Supply Chain Day, well, it’s a celebration, a real celebration, and a big old spotlight on the industry professionals of supply chain, the people that connect the world and make it happen from Mary Kay. You and I have talked a lot about this from the folks that drive all the intricate and complex logistics that allow you to drink your morning coffee every day to the Highline networks that ensure critical medical supplies reach their destinations. We’re all consumers there, right? To the supply chain professionals that are driving trucks, driving forklifts, picking and packing, planning, you name it, leading, doing, making it all happen, right? These folks are the backbones of our connected world.

(03:07):

So upfront, folks, as we mentioned a second ago, join us every single year, April 29th as we delve into the stories of breakthroughs, the technologies, the topics, the people of global supply chain and folks, you can learn more@supplychainnow.com slash and we’re going to drop that link to the chat so you’re one click away from learning more and stay tuned. That would be updated regularly. Mary Kate, what I get wrong, and more importantly, you founded, as you mentioned, you founded the Stay of celebration a couple of years back. Why don’t you share your vision with the audience?

Mary Kate Love (03:39):

Yeah, so when I think about this day, I can’t not mention National Manufacturing Day because I was personally inspired by National Manufacturing Day, which is in October, I believe it’s October 4th every year. And what National Manufacturing Day set out to do was really highlight manufacturing and the careers in manufacturing, and that’s really similar to what we want to do with National Supply Chain Day. We have this vision that, hey, if we celebrate the people of supply chain, that will allow people early in their career, maybe students to say, Hey, supply chain’s got really cool jobs, really cool projects that people work on. Maybe I should choose that industry. Maybe I should get connected with someone in supply chain. And really kind of bringing that all together and getting people excited about supply chain and talking about supply chain we feel will help the future of supply chain.

Scott Luton (04:31):

Yes, well said. Mary Kate, I’ll tell you I admire your vision and your leadership and your action oriented leadership by the truckload where we’re going next here. We’ve got a wonderful guest coming up, Mary Kate, a dear friend, a distinguished global supply chain leader, and a very special guest. I want to welcome in Enrique Alvarez, co-founder and managing director with Vector Global Logistics. Hey. Hey Enrique, how you doing? Hey guys,

Enrique Alvarez (04:58):

How are you doing? And happy Supply Chain Day. This is amazing.

Mary Kate Love (05:01):

Yes,

Scott Luton (05:02):

It’s Enrique en Mary, Kate, Enrique, I want to start with you on this day of celebration for our industry. Really appreciate your big time support of National Supply Chain Day and a lot of things we’re doing here. Why is it important to you and the Vector team to support this special day, all these wonderful people and the greater supply chain industry? Your thoughts, Enrique?

Enrique Alvarez (05:21):

Well, it’s massively important to us, and I think for everyone that shares this industry, for one, some of all the supply chain now professionals out there working in this industry is a very intense job. So we sometimes spend more time with the people we work with, our own family. So this is a huge family for us from all over the world. And so kind of having the celebration one day of celebrating this kind of partnership, friendship, and sometime even that family connections is important. And then on the other hand, everything we use and has a logistics component to it, right? Everything has a supply chain component, and so it’s critical that we celebrate, have one day dedicated fully to this amazing industry.

Scott Luton (06:00):

Well said Enrique, I’m Mary Kate. I know you appreciate, we all do appreciate Enrique’s leadership, the whole team Nuria Christie, the massive rock and roll team over at Vector Global Logistics, huh?

Mary Kate Love (06:11):

Yeah, we love your team and actually Enrique, for the people toing in, can you tell us a little bit about what you all do over there at Vector Global Logistics?

Enrique Alvarez (06:20):

Of course. And well once again, thank you for having me here. It’s an honor to be with both. Vector is a boutique international logistics company. We do everything that has to do with the shipping and supply chain from Ocean Air Truck. We’re warehousing, we have presence in the us, Mexico, Chile, and Peru. And the best way to contact me is probably by LinkedIn. You’ll look for my name, Enrique Alvarez and Vector Global Logistics on LinkedIn. I think that’s probably the easiest way to finding me.

Scott Luton (06:48):

Well said. Or as the international man of mystery, you’re at events around the globe keynote and shaking hands, making it happen. I bet you’ll see Enrique in your neck of the world soon. I can only imagine Mary Kate Enrique’s frequent flyer miles. I bet he is. Got like a billion of ’em, huh?

Mary Kate Love (07:03):

Yeah, you got to add ’em up. We got to have a show where we follow Enrique. I think

Scott Luton (07:08):

There’s got to be an AI play for that, Enrique. Alright, so this is what we’re going to do next. Mary, Kate and Enrique, our team worked hard to get out and get submissions from across industry. We got some submitted and then we went out and hunting for some other things and we got some of those favorite snapshots from across global supply chain here. And I’m going to share my screen and we’re going to walk through these a little bit here. I love celebrating with teams out in plants and factories and warehouses everywhere, right? This is Linda Rendel, the CEO of the Clorox company, celebrating a big milestone with one of their factory teams. Big thanks to Rick McDonald and Beverly over there. Here’s another one from the Clorox team. This is a Clorox plant getting together down in Mexico, celebrating a big win, and then a little closer to home, we got Win Tech Inc. A manufacturing company based in metro Atlanta. Our dear friend and co-host, Alison Giddens. And the team was celebrating 25 years. Mary Kate Enrique, 25 years of manufacturing.

Mary Kate Love (08:04):

Yeah, that’s at least what a million problems solved every single day.

Scott Luton (08:08):

No kidding. Let’s see here. Oh, Enrique

Enrique Alvarez (08:13):

Recognize some of those faces. Yes,

Scott Luton (08:15):

I hope you do. Great forwarders and some other professionals from Vector Global Logistics making it happen. Now, here’s an interesting story. This is Cleve Francis. I think I said that right? Cleve UPS driver over 55 years of driving excellence under his belt. Wow, how about that? That is remarkable.

Mary Kate Love (08:34):

Impressive.

Scott Luton (08:35):

Yes. Round of applause, Mary Kate. I mean 55 years of driving the highways and byways, whether it’s in Atlanta or elsewhere. I mean, these are the people that make it happen every day, huh?

Mary Kate Love (08:46):

Exactly. They’re the people that connects our world, as we said.

Scott Luton (08:49):

Absolutely.

Enrique Alvarez (08:50):

Someone was saying that this is for unsung heroes and that’s just a picture one of them. Many, many people like that, but we owe them so much and I think it’s just amazing that we can celebrate with them in this supply chain day.

Scott Luton (09:03):

Well said. Now here is LA from Southeastern Freight. Now Enrique, this looks familiar because on the day at King Plow where our studio is, whenever we’re doing in-person content in Atlanta, they were filming that day. Hollywood supply chain was everywhere. You had a thousand different trucks. We had a loading dock that Ellie had to squeeze into. And Enrique, I’m going to tell you, I sat there and watched and all he could do it with his eyes shut. It was perfect, all in one perfect take. Enrique. That is awesome in my book. All right, how about this? We got a mix of volunteers and warehouse professionals from our friends at Books for Africa now, Mary Kate and Enrique, y’all may be familiar. Books for Africa is a powerful nonprofit, shipped more than 60 million books to all 55 countries on the African continent since 1988. Folks, you can learn more@booksforafrica.org.

(09:53):

Of course, our warehousing pros are incredibly important. Here’s some more. Getting ready to make it happen at Books for Africa. And then one last thing, and folks, we could spend three hours, 30 hours doing this and still be scratching the tip of a global holistic supply chain, but we’ve been amplifying the voice of reverse logistics and returns management for years. Be our friends, Tony Sheroda and the Reverse Logistics Association. These professionals here, I believe are with DB Schenker and I think they’re processing returned smart devices, remanufacturing, and getting them back out into the Ree economy. Now that space is only going to get more important in the years ahead. Incredible professionals across the reverse space. It doesn’t get enough attention. So Mary Kate, I don’t know about y’all, but I’m a very visual learner and just seeing all those snapshots, I wish we had time for a million others. It just brings to mind just all the incredible work that the people across global supply chain do every single day.

Mary Kate Love (10:52):

Yeah, and I think to Enrique’s point, when he opened up and talked about how this is teams and partnerships, those pictures really painted that whole picture, right? Of all these teams that work together every single day. So I’d love to see those and see teams having fun and celebrating too.

Scott Luton (11:09):

Agreed. Agreed. Hey, really quick aside, Enrique, a little curve ball. Before we get into some of the trends shaping our industry, what’s one of the coolest ways that you and the Vector team have celebrated some of y’all’s big accomplishments? I know y’all been throwing axes during a few adult beverages. What’s one of your favorite things to do, Enrique, with the team?

Enrique Alvarez (11:26):

We like experiences. We like to try new things. We once won to curling here in Atlanta and for both us, I didn’t know what curling was. It’s the little brooms and you’re having little rocks and you vice, and it’s a lot of fun. The point is, it’s just part of the celebration and it’s part of what we are celebrating here today with everyone around the world. And we just hope that next year people continue to send us as many pictures as they did to you, Scott, this time. And it’s a big family. That’s the way I perceive supply chain and the way that I see logistics and given all the hours and hours that the drivers and warehouse people and everyone dedicates to this industry for making our lives better. It’s just a very little thing we can do in return to just make sure they’re welcomed and celebrated.

Scott Luton (12:11):

Well said. We’re going to touch on next year and between now and next year, April 29th, 2025. It’s hard to even say that coming up what you can do because we’re going to take this to new heights and celebrating all the professionals. Okay, Mary Kate, we’re rocking and rolling right along. Let’s dive in to trends, huh?

Mary Kate Love (12:28):

Yeah, trends. So this will be fun. Please reply in the comments, trends you’re seeing too, because obviously we can’t cover every single trend. But we’ll kick off with Enrique to cover your top one to two trends that you’re seeing in supply chain. Well,

Enrique Alvarez (12:42):

Thinking about this before the show, I actually came up with a lot. This is a fast growing industry, fast growing in every single aspects of supply chain, but AI is one of the ones that we’ll continue to see, not only making predictions, managing inventories, production schedules, but just in general. AI will be applied to every single step of the supply chain. Some others, and one of that I particularly like is sustainability. I start to see how companies are moving quickly into sustainability and how important that will be. And that’s something very exciting to me personally. And as we continue to manage extreme weather patterns and ESG regulations and trends, that should be another good one. But there’s really plenty cybersecurity, last miles of service deck, electric vehicles, you name it. It’s an exciting industry to be a part of. It’s just going to continue to grow quicker and quicker every year.

Mary Kate Love (13:36):

Yeah, totally agree. Like you said, it’s changing every year, every day, every month. You have to keep on top of all these new trends and new technologies. Scott, how about your thoughts?

Scott Luton (13:47):

I’m going to steal this one thought here from Will Quinn Nearshoring. Yes. As Enrique, you and I and Mary Kay have talked about what’s going on in Mexico right now. Just as one example of nearshoring. It is a rock and roll economy and market down there from all the nearshoring and shoring opportunities. I’m going to talk about cybersecurity. It’s one of the two I want to mention because as Enrique mentioned, this technology revolution that we’re in AI and plenty otherwise, machine learning is still making greater impact. Don’t sleep on blockchain. Blockchains back. In fact, according to some research, it is the second biggest technology that executives are looking to invest in through 2024. But cybersecurity attacks unfortunately, are going to continue to multiply and become more complex, more diverse and more impactful. IBM says that the average cost, get this Enrique and Mary Kate Enrique, I know you got your little black book there.

(14:37):

So write this number in it when I share this. Okay, IBM says, the average cost of a data breach has grown to almost $4.5 million in 2023, man. Now, data theorem reports that 91% of organizations were hit with a software supply chain attack over the last 12 months. I’m surprised that number is not a hundred percent by now, and I bet it’ll be a hundred percent in the next 12 months. So obvious questions, Mary Kate, Enrique, that come to my mind. What is our cybersecurity plan, right? And does it take into account your entire ecosystem, your cloud providers, all of your suppliers, as we all know, it’s cliche now, but that weakest link, that’s the one, right? That’s the one. Really quickly. Number two, one of the reasons beyond all the people that make up global supply chain, of course, that we’re focusing on here today.

(15:23):

The second biggest reason I think is so exciting right now to be in supply chains is ongoing technology revolution, but it’s a must. It’s required. Global supply chain leaders and teams must embrace new innovative technology to keep up and advance, right? We hear a lot about operational velocity and just how much faster we’ve got to move to keep up with the demands from our customers, from our suppliers, from the whole ecosystem. All of that’s common sense in many circles in global supply chain. But I love this. I love how Jen McKean puts it, Mary Kate and Enrique, y’all know our friend, senior supply chain leader at Walmart, they have this mantra, they use people led and tech powered people, led tech powered. The human factor is what leads digital transformation. But for that to happen, Enrique and Mary Kate, business leaders must first figure out what business challenge we’re trying to solve and then select the right tool, be it technology or something else. And then if it is technology, successful human adoption starts with understanding the why. What are we trying to do as a team? And of course, without adoption of any new process, certainly any new technology, what do we really have in Mary Kay and Mary Kate, right? So cybersecurity a big bucket of technology stuff.

Mary Kate Love (16:38):

I totally agree with that. We’re both nodding our heads along especially about adoption, right? I think that’s critical. And you have to be realistic when you’re building new technology and how it’ll be adopted in the marketplace. So when I was thinking about trends, I’m going a little bit of a different direction to say, one of the trends that I’ve seen and that researched is that in venture capital investments, it’s actually increasing when it comes to supply chain technology. So where we’ve seen a lot of other industries maybe pull back on investments just given the market, that’s not the case with supply chain, right? The funding’s actually increasing, which would allow me to think at least that it’s outperforming other investments in other industries, which is just really interesting. And it feels probably to us about time that supply chain gets these investments, gets this attention because we really understand the power of supply chain.

Scott Luton (17:31):

Yes, yes. The power of supply chain much more powerful than the power of grace goal back in the eighties. For anyone that may have been watched the cartoons of the eighties, Enrique, He-Man, please tell me you were a big yes. I’m not a

Enrique Alvarez (17:46):

Huge fan, but I watched it for sure.

Scott Luton (17:50):

We watched a lot of Heman, Mary Kate, and Enrique in the Lutton household. Alright, so before we keep on driving here, because we’re going to get into some of the, we just talked about some of the technology and everyone knows the automation that’s taking place across the globe, and there’s a lot of concern about it replacing folks. I would argue that it’s creating a lot more opportunities and a lot more jobs than it’s eliminating. So stay tuned and yeah, maybe I’m a bit optimistic there, but it’s in my bones, it’s in my DNA, Mary, Kate and Enrique. Let’s take a couple comments. Hey, this is Fred Tolbert, the one and only Fred Tolbert. Fred. He had a nickname. He appeared with us forever ago.

Mary Kate Love (18:27):

Fred is great.

Scott Luton (18:28):

Yes, Fred is wonderful people. And now he’s turning on light bulbs there at UGA teaching classes. Now Fred says, if you’ve eaten a meal, worn some clothes, or driven a car today, thank an inventory planner for making the products available to you. Thank the warehousing and transportation pros for moving the products to your local store or delivery truck. Mary Kate, you are a rock star for your vision in starting national supply chain today. Mary Kate, your response there

Mary Kate Love (18:53):

That was almost poetic. I think that was a really great way to sum it up and to bring it down to what you experience every day is connected to supply chain.

Scott Luton (19:02):

Yes, absolutely, Fred, great to have you. Now, his nickname, do you remember the doc holiday of Global supply Chain? That was Fred Tolbert, it’s nickname that Greg and I gave him a couple of years ago, and Fred, it’s been too long. We got to break bread soon. Alfredo says, congratulations to all the members of this community and a hug to all of us who battle day by day in the supply chain process. Alfredo, well said there. Well said. Let’s see here. Jake says, while nearshoring is a physical infrastructure trend, let’s not forget the technology integration task to create a streamlined supply chain planning process, integrating those new partners, those code manufacturers, co-packers, et cetera. Well said there, Jake, Enrique, any comment there on he’s calling out. Of course, the integration has got to take place as we’re building an ecosystem that can truly move mountains.

Enrique Alvarez (19:52):

Yeah, there’s no doubt that the world’s getting smaller and smaller despite what we see in the media sometimes. And yeah, it’s going to be critical. And as you pointed out, Scott, I think that this is a big opportunity to create more jobs despite what we also here. The world’s going to continue shrinking.

Scott Luton (20:09):

Alright, speaking of CA from Delaware, great to see you via LinkedIn. See Ham, always enjoy your perspective as well. Let’s see here. Now, speaking of some of these jobs and positions and professions that are all being created with the global supply chain, tidal wave of innovation and change and a lot of exciting new things there, a variety of really cool new jobs and career opportunities that Enrique, you just mentioned. They’re getting made, created, born, left and right, and as we talked about, there’s lots of folks talking about jobs being eliminated, but man, I’m of the ilk, Mary Kate, Enrique, that if you raise your hand and volunteer and you are willing to learn something new every day and you’re willing to take on new responsibility and learn new forward-looking technology, right? And willing to deal with change, man doors of opportunity. Is it doors or windows? Both doors or windows of opportunity?

Enrique Alvarez (21:01):

Both at this point. Yeah,

Scott Luton (21:03):

They’re going to be a flung open left. Right? So I want to start with this. Mary Kate, when we talk about all these new jobs, what is one cool newer job that’s on your radar? Mary Kate?

Mary Kate Love (21:13):

So this one’s interesting because I was thinking about high level at first, but then to go for an actual example, I saw weirdly at Chicago Department of Streets and Sanitation, there was a really cool new job posted that spoke. It’s basically at the intersection of city planning, supply chain and sustainability. So think optimal route planning how to service citizens better and more efficiently and how to do that all sustainably. And it’s calling for this kind of supply chain experience background, which made me think about how cool that city planning is also now supply chain too. So that one really stuck out to me as something I hadn’t thought about before.

Scott Luton (21:54):

Yes. And folks, if you’re out there and not in global supply chain and you need to plan anything, is there any greater expertise to tap into then the supply chain world, right? Enrique first respond to that role. Mary Kate was talking about that kind of intersection of city planning and supply chain. And then what’s one cool job that you’ve got on your radar that we’re seeing more and more of here lately?

Enrique Alvarez (22:15):

Yeah. Well, first city planning’s going to be key, especially as again, technology continues to expand and sustainability is some of the things that Mary Kay mentioned too. And I think sustainability is something that it’s going to be incredibly important in the future. Before answering my question with my, I guess, cool job to the future I read, and depending on the different companies that are doing this research, is there’s 20 to 30% employment growth projected for the next six years. So that’s a huge number considering all the people that already work in supply chain. And so it is an optimistic outlook out there, as you said, Scott, it’s just a matter of making sure that you keep your mind open to all those new possibilities. With that said, and I have a bunch, there’s really a lot of different ones, but the one that I would personally apply to bionic operators, have you guys watched all these robots? Did you put all this bionic implants? And you can lift all this massive

Scott Luton (23:09):

Traits, really like an exoskeleton? Yes.

Enrique Alvarez (23:11):

Just like, oh, I love it.

Scott Luton (23:13):

Yes. I wish I had one in high school.

Enrique Alvarez (23:15):

That could be a cool one.

Scott Luton (23:16):

Yeah. Yes. You put on these exoskeletons lift cars, make things happen. You’re like a super pro at that point. All

Enrique Alvarez (23:23):

The drones also kind of exciting and cool as well. Disruptor directors. There’s going to be so many, many different things out there. Yes. That it’ll be fun to be a supply chain professional.

Scott Luton (23:34):

Well, and Enrique, I was kind of kidding a little bit with the superhero component of the exoskeleton opportunities, but kidding aside, safety and eliminating repetitive injuries and just changing the day in and day out of that component of our workforce and making it easier for them to be successful, safer, to be successful, and to be more productive. So I love that. Great. Call out, Enrique. Alright, I guess it’s my time to share. Huh?

Mary Kate Love (24:00):

You’re up.

Scott Luton (24:01):

I am up. So I’m going to revert back to, I saw something the other day. LinkedIn published some research, I think it was back in January that showed what it considered to be, and gosh, how many other groups could have the position of LinkedIn. I mean that really put their finger on the pulse of this. So what they identified some of the fastest growing roles, at least in the us, a few of those were chief growth officer, which is probably, it sounds like an older role that they just kind of retweaked the title sustainability analyst, vice president and Chiefs, presidents of diversity and inclusion. So that’s great to see AI engineer, which I think you mentioned that Enrique and shouldn’t surprise anybody, but one I’ve seen more and more that I think we will continue to see more and more chief data officer, a c-suite role that isn’t just focused on the successful capture and utilization of enterprise data. That’s only part of it, but also focused on establishing the risk management approach. Overall governance, that’s not a bad word, despite how some parties attempt at making it a bad word due to their failure perhaps to govern effectively. But I’ll leave that for another conversation. Risk management, governance, capture utilization, all of that. I think we’re going to see a lot more formal senior leadership data roles in the future for global supply chain. Do y’all agree, disagree, Mary Kate, what you think?

Mary Kate Love (25:17):

Yeah, we always talk about especially that data piece that just being crucial to making any updates, improvements in supply chain. So I’m not surprised to hear that,

Scott Luton (25:28):

Enrique. I feel

Enrique Alvarez (25:29):

Like we’re just scratching the surface here. You also can dive into the packaging world and then you have all this amazing new materials that they’re testing and trying and carbon CO2 experts maybe, right? Someone that makes sure that you not only count how many CO2 you’re utilizing, but doing something about it as well. So

Scott Luton (25:47):

Well said. I think we are just scratching a service. It’s too much global supply chain. Even on today being national supply chain day. It is just too much to cover it all in an hour. It’s too much to cover it all in a day in a week. I mean, we’d have to eliminate sleep. We might make some progress in a year. I mean, it’s where we are. It’s really exciting. Let’s see what other folks are saying. Will moving your ERP and other solutions to the clouds a great first step to adding security redundancy and scalability? This also moves your data to a data lake to take advantage of AI and machine learning. Good stuff there Will, Jake says one of the trends emerging is the upskilling of the workforce due to tech requirements, a reshaping of the old school apprentice programs. Yeah, Jake, it’s a great call out.

(26:33):

I was just reading, I think PetSmart was a company that was bringing folks in, putting ’em into a rotational program and it was leading to a boost in their supply chain talent. So that’s a great approach there. Let’s see here. Alejandra says, happy national supply chain Day at Plan it together, advanced planning and scheduling to help businesses achieve greater agility and efficiency. Hey, it’s great to see you there and great to have you here, Alejandra. Okay, so I’ll try to make some more of these comments in here in just a minute, but I want to pulse y’all’s ability to predict the future. Mary Kate, Enrique, are y’all game for that? I’m in. We’re live. So I guess,

Mary Kate Love (27:09):

Yeah, we have no choice. Yeah,

Scott Luton (27:12):

So, so Enrique, I want to start with you. Let’s put our shades on, talk about the bright future of what lies ahead. Take a minute and paint us a picture of where and what the future looks like for global supply chain. Where are we headed in Rade?

Enrique Alvarez (27:26):

Well, one of our people that are listening to us today mentioned Nearshoring, and that’s very important. But if we talked about earlier about the technology and some of the cool trends in our industry, and then we talk about some of the new job positions that are going to be created. So you put those two things together and it really can go in many different ways. And I think it will go in many different ways. At the same time, it’ll go technology and AI on one end, robotics, machine learning, cybersecurity. So I feel like it’s just pushing the technological boundaries across the different careers and services that supply chain professionals provide right now.

Scott Luton (28:04):

Yes. Well said. Enrique and Mary Kate, you’re going to get a little different question here. Feel free to comment on that bold path ahead for the industry. And Mary Kate, I’d welcome any comments you have there, but in particular, what lies ahead for national supply chain day? And of course, how can folks plug in and make sure they know how to participate in the months ahead? Your thoughts, Mary Kate?

Mary Kate Love (28:24):

Yeah. National supply chain day, like we said in the beginning, is really a celebration of the people and supply chain. And really with this focus and this eye towards how can we shape the future of supply chain, and we can only do that through the participation of everybody. And so in the future next year, we might see, hey, people posting supply chain day events on this day and maybe tuning in live or maybe doing a tour with students or connecting with us on different programs that we’ve got set up too. So you can expect to see, I would say more events, more ways for you to participate. But my, I guess call to action would be we really want ideas from you on how to celebrate this day and you can connect with us. This easiest way is supply chain now.com/nscd, national supply chain day. And you can follow us on all of our social there, reach out on social, but we’re shaping national supply chain day. And so we’re open to any and all ideas from this community.

Scott Luton (29:24):

Well said Mary Kate and Catherine and Amanda, first off, thanks for what you do behind the scenes, the power of production, incredible team. But if you could put on the crawler, I think that’s what it’s called at the bottom, if y’all would drop that URL, that Mary Kate just mentioned, and make sure folks know exactly the central repository, the central landing page so folks can plug in and like Mary Kate said, give us your ideas. Enrique, you ever hear the phrase, we are flying the plane while building it? You ever hear that Enrique flying

Enrique Alvarez (29:54):

The plane while building

Scott Luton (29:55):

It? Yes. Well, you know what, Mary Kate and Enrique, that’s a little bit here, right? We know the overarching objective and part of the vision that Mary Kate laid out is we want to lift up an entire industry, especially recognizing, celebrating the people. And I love some of those ideas you mentioned having gatherings or meetups across the globe. How can we bring people into our facilities, really create more awareness. Hands-on awareness for folks, students, you name it. Who knows? We might be out in schools, right? Really helping light bulbs go off. No telling, but we’d welcome your ideas and what y’all want to see out there. Alright, a couple quick comments here before we move on here. Let’s see here. So Tyrone says, it is windows of opportunity, not doors. Kate and Mary Kate. So I’m not trying to alienate any of our construction folks out there.

(30:40):

Let’s see here. Gino says integration is going to happen. No turning back. Now in my old age, Gino says, I witnessed new tech come and go, but this is advanced technology and change is still change. Good stuff there. Tyrone says, I’m hoping for increased reverse logistics to minimize landfill impacts. Asset recapture is too often lost due to no reverse logistics. That’s an excellent comment. Tyrone, Mary Kate and Rick Kate. One of the trends I should have mentioned, especially being a big proponent for the reverse logistics space in our friends, there is the Ree economy. I’m not sure what the latest number is. I think the last time that I shared anything kind of dove into this Ree economy. I think Remanufactured, recycled Rewar, all that stuff, it was like $60 billion was the size of the Ree economy. Have y’all heard anything? Y’all have been tracking this at all. Do you lean into the Ree economy? Do y’all buy remanufactured stuff? Mary Kate,

Mary Kate Love (31:34):

I buy and used clothes. So there’s a lot of clothes that you can rent for a period of time and reuse them and it makes so much more sense than buying a dress for something you wear to a wedding one time. I’m

Scott Luton (31:46):

With you,

Mary Kate Love (31:47):

Small example. But I think a lot of people are doing that now,

Scott Luton (31:50):

A small example. But if millions of people do that and take advantage of opportunity, man, that is powerful. Enrique, this Ree economy. Well, I

Enrique Alvarez (31:58):

Think that’s more than a trend and I see it in my children. I mean, maybe we’re not like the right generation to materialize this fully, but it’s very clear to me and I think for everyone else out there that new generations are really going to just buy products from companies that are embracing this recon and sustainability and good people and good companies. So there’s no doubt about

Scott Luton (32:21):

It. Yes, no doubt about it. Going off on different tangent here, she says she worries a lot about how people rate or interpret supply chain. It’s a serious and difficult field requiring lots of math and stats. Now see him, I don’t disagree somehow I don’t know how they let me into global supply chain given my awful math and stats, statistics, skill sets. But kidding aside, Mary Kate put you on the spot. If you had one thing, one way to dispel any kind of misconception about global supply chain, if you were talking to a class of fifth graders, right? What’s one thing that you might share? Mary Kate?

Mary Kate Love (32:57):

I think the supply chain industry is for anyone who likes to solve problems. I think that’s a really, there’s so many different ways you can go with that, but it’s for anyone who likes to solve problems.

Scott Luton (33:08):

Yes, well said. I think at its very core, I might add planning and solve problems at its very core, but well said. Enrique, what would you add?

Enrique Alvarez (33:16):

Well, I love the international component to it. If you like to meet people from all over the world sharing same culture and values and supply chain, I think that’s an amazing industry. That’s the one thing that I really cherish the most.

Scott Luton (33:30):

Agreed, agreed. And again, the human factors is not going anywhere. It’ll be reimagined in many ways, but again, human led tech powered. So I probably owed Jen McKeen and our friends at Walmart some rights or some licenses for their mantra there, but I really enjoy that. Take Malinga happy national supply chain day. He’s glad to be part of the program. From Luaka what? Zambia, Southern Africa. Great to have you here. Malinga. Enrique, I’m going to put you on the spot perhaps with Pat Lansky’s question. I’m going to read it to you and this might be something you want to take offline with Pat. We’ll do this, but hey folks, we want to be here and bring all of your input as much as we can fit into this hour. Pat is asking about any thoughts about recent trends and consolidating warehousing in one key location with a large warehouse versus multiple smaller warehousing in different locations. This seems to be an ongoing transition in strategies. Enrique, do you want to grab Pat a beer and talk after the session or is there something that comes to mind really quick to address this question? Well,

Enrique Alvarez (34:31):

Both because Pat is the person you want to grab a beer with. He’s an interesting person, but I think it really depends on the geography. Some countries you see a bit more of what Pat is describing and some others you see a bit more of the approach of stored and some of the other warehouse big warehouse companies are doing. So it’s just a matter of being more efficient, being closer to your clients, reducing all those last mile distribution costs and being efficient. And that can look very, very differently depending on what industry you’re in. And then also what geographical location you

Scott Luton (35:02):

Are. Yes, really quick, Mary, I’ll get you to comment here, but Pat Lansky, wonderful leader, wonderful person, and if you’re ever in Minneapolis, make sure you get him to take you to the Monte Carlo Steakhouse. It is a legend up in that neck of the woods and enjoyed our conversation and a stake there. Mary Kate, anything to add? Warehousing? One thing that Enrique touched on, getting closer to customers, of course I’ve really found an interesting study with these urban fulfillment centers and just not only the automation and the technology, but the predictive analytics that allows effective positioning and placement of product. But your thoughts, Mary Kate, anything on Pat’s question?

Mary Kate Love (35:39):

No, I think it’s one of those things where you need a lot of data to make the decisions around what’s the best strategy for you, right? Because I don’t think, like Enrique said, there’s a lot of factors that depend on what might be the best for you.

Scott Luton (35:51):

Yes. Let’s see here. Jake says, Hey Pat, we’ve seen that this depends upon the vertical in question and importantly, the reaction time to either the consumer or patient, et cetera being served. Good stuff there. Let’s see here. And Jake’s also making a prediction. I would suggest you’ll see citizen developers morph into place replacing traditional planner roles, leveraging with a new role that leverages AI to jumpstart both interventions at the execution level, but also plan out probabilities and scenarios of things expected. That’s why he’s the John Wayne of global supply chain. Mary Kate and Enrique. Let’s see here. Adrian’s making a prediction, more mergers and acquisitions at the same time, more spinoffs. Mary Kate, you got your finger on the pulse of the m and a and the VC world. Would you agree with Adrian’s production there?

Mary Kate Love (36:39):

Yeah, I think as people are realizing they can be connected more and more and share inventory, share different things like that, I think merger and acquisitions will continue to be on the rise.

Scott Luton (36:51):

Yes, and Enrique, you’re not foreign to that space. Yeah, I

Enrique Alvarez (36:55):

Agree. A lot of consolidation still available. A lot of really smaller patient, nice companies out there. So yeah, that makes sense.

Scott Luton (37:02):

Alright, lots more comments here. I’m going to try to get a couple more before we start to wrap. I hate that even say that. Mary Kate Love and Enrique Alvarez own national supply chain day. Let’s see, Malinga says the future of supply chains is dynamic and strategic adaption is essential. Well said. Now that’s almost poetic malinga, just direct to the point. Succinct. See hims like, hey, that’s where the math and stats comes in optimization, that problem solving that you were talking about earlier. Alright, Tyrone’s picking up on the steakhouse reference. Let’s not forget. Supply chain management is no longer the optional appetizer. It’s the must have entree, table stakes as he said there. Oh, Tyrone, I love that. One more thing here, Jose says, while in the topic of problem solving, I’m back to Mary Kate there. Any companies working with technologies to streamline the manufacturing and exporting process between the us, Mexico and Canada.

(37:52):

I think Jose is looking for a connection or resource there. That’s what we’re here for. Mary Kate Enrique. Right, exactly. If y’all can help out, Jose, y’all do that please. Alright, so Mary, Kate and Enrique are, Tom has gone past way too fast. I cannot wait to see where we take this. I cannot wait. I really appreciate your vision, Mary Kate, and your passion for this global industry that powers everything and we all benefit because while the three of us are practitioners, the three of us are consumers just like everyone else. Yeah. We all benefit from the same industry we serve in. That’s a bit circular. So I want to ask y’all one thing before we leave, and that’s one of your favorite key takeaways from this conversation, whether it’s something we all said here, comments mentioned. If you want to throw in one more prediction, I’m going to give both of y’all a chance to weigh in one more time before I close this out here today on National Supply Chain Day April 29th every year. Big thanks of course to Enrique and the Vector global logistics team for helping to make it happen. Our inaugural sponsor, big time supporter. So Mary Kate, actually, no, no, we’re going Enrique first. Mary Kate, you’re, no offense Enrique, but Mary Kate, she’s close house. A founder. She’s cleanup hitter. She’s a cleanup hitter. There we go. Enrique, if you had to leave one thing with folks out there, whether it’s a key takeaway, a challenge, a prediction, you name it, what would that one thing be? Enrique. So

Enrique Alvarez (39:15):

For me, it will be a big, big thank you to everyone working in this industry. Again, we couldn’t really do what we do in the world, no matter what you do actually without supply chain. So big. Thank you. Happy, happy supply chain day. Yeah, keep it up. Well said. We need every single professional in this industry to keep doing what he’s doing. So thank you.

Scott Luton (39:36):

That’s right. And I think you almost created a new national day almost, which we’re going to get on the calendar soon. National supply chain, now day, that will sound, that might pop up, down. That’s farther

Enrique Alvarez (39:45):

Down the rest.

Mary Kate Love (39:46):

Yeah.

Scott Luton (39:46):

But Enrique, I love that simple way of rapping, showing gratitude. It’s so powerful. No one does it enough. Mary, Kate, what about you? What do you want to challenge folks with or make sure they keep front and center? One final thought you want to leave with folks out here.

Mary Kate Love (40:02):

I think to build on what Enrique said, I would say thinking about the future of supply chain. And we know that we need top tier talent to choose supply chain as the industry they want to spend their career in. So maybe we can all mentor one to two people or look for those opportunities to bring new younger people early in their career, students into the fold for supply chain. I think that’s extremely important. And Fred is doing that and I know other people are doing that too. Yes. And continue to invest in supply chain. I have to put that in there. We are seeing a lot of investments happen in supply chain and VCs like Venture 53 that are focused on transportation and logistics. Those are popping up everywhere and I think that’s an extremely important call to action is keep investing in supply chain.

Scott Luton (40:49):

That’s right. Especially the people of supply chain, right? Enrique and Mary Kate. We’ve got to invest in our people, continue to find ways of not only creating more fulfilling roles and careers, but helping them find the new skill sets they’re looking to gain. Right? Very, very powerful. Alright, and by the way, venture 53, shout out, I think we’ll be with the team there in Atlanta a couple months here. So look for key takeaways and great discussions to be had there. Alright, I’m going to add just a couple here. Mary Kate and Enrique. Enrique. So folks, if you don’t know Enrique Alvarez or if you do know him, he’s got a black top secret book where he captures all the market intel. I’m telling you, you could sell it on Amazon and make billions of dollars that way. But Enrique, how many pages did you fill up here today?

Enrique Alvarez (41:32):

I had a couple really good notes, great comments from the audience.

Scott Luton (41:36):

Wonderful. A lot we couldn’t get to here today. Yeah. Alright folks, couple things I want to wrap on as we wrap up. Just the live stream, right? Just the live stream national supply chain day, really, while we had to pick a date, Mary Kate and Enrique National Supply Chain Day can be truly celebrated year round and wherever across the globe. Really, it is a global industry. It’ll always be a global industry and it’s really important mindset. Keep it going, make it sustainable, make it sustaining and durable. But what can you do today or this week or this year even? Well, I would say Mary Kate and Enrique, picking up on what kind of themes both of y’all have shared. Hey, show some gratitude. Show some gratitude to all the supply chain professionals that you come across. All of us get packages all the time. By the way, minimize those returns. Do your homework. Let’s not add to the tidal wave of returns headed to oftentimes, unfortunately, the landfills everywhere. Do your homework, but show gratitude. Hey, Enrique and Mary Kate, do things ever go wrong as a consumer with your orders or your deliveries or just stuff you won’t look for? Of course they do, right? Enrique showed hesitation. Do you have always perfect orders all the time, Enrique? No,

Enrique Alvarez (42:42):

Not at all. There’s some issues from time to time for sure,

Scott Luton (42:46):

Of course, right? People aren’t perfect as we’ve established today. People power global supply chain. So when things inevitably go wrong, Mary Kate, how about folks showing some empathy? How about that, right? Alright, so show some gratitude, show some empathy. And lastly, buckle up folks. We got a lot more to come in the months ahead as we build out new, exciting programming for National Supply Chain Day. Once again, thanks to everybody for being here. But thanks to Mary Kate. Love your leadership, your passion, your vision. I’m honored to collaborate with you every day. Mary Kate, thank you both. This was super fun, completely agree, and big thanks Enrique Alvarez whole team over Vector global Logistics, not just for their sponsorship and support, but for truly making the world a little better place every single day. And what I mean by that, y’all should see the great and the endless nonprofit and good works they do beyond the great business.

(43:39):

Y’all check it out. As I’ve said this before, Enrique and Mary Kate, when I first met Enrique, the second sentence out of his mouth, Mary Kate, was, I’m going to change the world. We’re going to change the world. We are going to change the world. Love that. And I hear that a lot, but in the years since, I mean, I swear Enrique jumps out of bed every day to figure out how to make the world a better place. And Enrique high praise. But it comes from a very genuine place and I’m honored to collaborate with you every day as well.

Enrique Alvarez (44:03):

Thank you so much. And we all are in an industry where changing the world is a very realistic thing and most people do it every day. So thank you so much. It’s great to be here with you and Mary Kate. And again, congratulations to everyone out there working hard to get things done.

Scott Luton (44:19):

That’s right. Every day. Folks, thanks for being here today. More importantly, thank you for all you just thought Enrique was saying, you stole my line, Enrique, thanks for all that you do to make things happen across the globe. Solving those problems. Mary Kate touched on planning proactively, reactively, putting out fires, moving mountains, changing how business is done, man, that’s the human factor, powering all of that. So really appreciate that. And finally, with all of that said on Bath, the entire team here at Supply Chain now, thanks for being here. First off for National Supply Chain Day, but more importantly, hey, do good, give forward, be the change that’s needed, and we’ll see you next time. Right back here on Supply Chain. Now. Happy National Supply Chain. They are.

Intro/Outro (44:58):

Thanks for being a part of our supply chain now, community. Check out all of our programming@supplychainnow.com and make sure you subscribe to Supply Chain now, anywhere you listen to podcasts. And follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram. See you next time on Supply Chain. Now.

 

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Scott W. Luton

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VP, Marketing & Host

Enrique Alvarez

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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Jose Miguel Irarrazaval

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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.

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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.

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Katherine Hintz, MBA is a marketing professional 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.

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Kim Reuter

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From humble beginnings working the import docks, representing Fortune 500 giants, Ford, Michelin Tire, and Black & Decker; to Amazon technology patent holder and Nordstrom Change Leader, Kimberly Reuter has designed, implemented, and optimized best-in-class, highly scalable global logistics and retail operations all over the world. Kimberly’s ability to set strategic vision supported by bomb-proof processes, built on decades of hands-on experience, has elevated her to legendary status. Sought after by her peers and executives for her intellectual capital and keen insights, Kimberly is a thought leader in the retail logistics industry.

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Kristi Porter

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.

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Sofia Rivas Herrera

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.

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Demo Perez

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.

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Kim Winter

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).

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Adrian Purtill

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.

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Kevin Brown

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.

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Donna Krache

Director of Communications and Executive Producer

Donna Krache is a former CNN executive producer who has won several awards in journalism and communication, including three Peabodys.  She has 30 years’ experience in broadcast and digital journalism. She led the first production team at CNN to convert its show to a digital platform. She has authored many articles for CNN and other media outlets. She taught digital journalism at Georgia State University and Arizona State University. Krache holds a bachelor’s degree in government from the College of William and Mary and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from the University of New Orleans. She is a serious sports fan who loves the Braves. She is president of the Dave Krache Foundation. Named in honor of her late husband, this non-profit pays fees for kids who want to play sports but whose parents are facing economic challenges.

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Nick Roemer

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.

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Allison Giddens

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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.

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Billy Taylor

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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.

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Tandreia Bellamy

Host

Tandreia Bellamy retired as the Vice President of Industrial Engineering for UPS Supply Chain Solutions which included the Global Logistics, Global Freight Forwarding and UPS Freight business units. She was responsible for operations strategy and planning, asset management, forecasting, and technology tool development to optimize sustainable efficiency while driving world class service.

Tandreia held similar positions at the business unit level for Global Logistics and Global Freight forwarding. As the leader of the Global Logistics engineering function, she directed all industrial engineering activies related to distribution, service parts logistics (post-sales support), and mail innovations (low cost, light weight shipping partnership with the USPS). Between these roles Tandreia helped to establish the Advanced Technology Group which was formed to research and develop cutting edge solutions focused on reducing reliance on manual labor.

Tandreia began her career in 1986 as a part-time hourly manual package handling employee. She spent the great majority of her career in the small package business unit which is responsible for the pick-up, sort, transport and delivery of packages domestically. She held various positions in Industrial Engineering, Marketing, Inside and On-road operations in Central Florida before transferring to Atlanta for a position in Corporate Product Development and Corporate Industrial Engineering. Tandreia later held IE leadership roles in Nebraska, Minnesota and Chicago. In her final role in small package she was an IE VP responsible for all aspects of IE, technology support and quality for the 25 states on the western half of the country.
Tandreia is currently a Director for the University of Central Florida (UCF) Foundation Board and also serves on their Dean’s Advisory Board for the College of Engineering and Computer Science. Previously Tandreia served on the Executive Advisory Board for Virginia Tech’s IE Department and the Association for Supply Chain Management. She served on the Board of Trustees for ChildServ (a Chicago child and family services non-profit) and also served on the Texas A&M and Tuskegee Engineering Advisory Boards. In 2006 she was named Business Advisor of the Year by INROADS, in 2009 she was recognized as a Technology All-Star at the Women of Color in STEM conference and in 2019 she honored as a UCF Distinguished Aluma by the Department of Industrial Engineering and Management Systems.

Tandreia holds a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering from Stanford University and a master’s degree in Industrial Engineering and Management Systems from UCF. Her greatest accomplishment, however, is being the proud mother of two college students, Ruby (24) and Anthony (22).

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Marty Parker

Host

Marty Parker serves as both the CEO & Founder of Adæpt Advising and an award-winning Senior Lecturer (Teaching Professor) in Supply Chain and Operations Management at the University of Georgia. He has 30 years of experience as a COO, CMO, CSO (Chief Strategy Officer), VP of Operations, VP of Marketing and Process Engineer. He founded and leads UGA’s Supply Chain Advisory Board, serves as the Academic Director of UGA’s Leaders Academy, and serves on multiple company advisory boards including the Trucking Profitability Strategies Conference, Zion Solutions Group and Carlton Creative Company.

Marty enjoys helping people and companies be successful. Through UGA, Marty is passionate about his students, helping them network and find internships and jobs. He does this through several hundred one-on-one zoom meetings each year with his students and former students. Through Adæpt Advising, Marty has organized an excellent team of affiliates that he works with to help companies grow and succeed. He does this by helping c-suite executives improve their skills, develop better leaders, engage their workforce, improve processes, and develop strategic plans with detailed action steps and financial targets. Marty believes that excellence in supply chain management comes from the understanding the intersection of leadership, culture, and technology, working across all parts of the organization to meet customer needs, maximize profit and minimize costs.

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Laura Lopez

Marketing Coordinator

Laura Lopez serves as our Supply Chain Now Marketing Coordinator. She graduated from Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Occidente in Mexico with a degree in marketing. Laura loves everything digital because she sees the potential it holds for companies in the marketing industry. Her passion for creativity and thinking outside the box led her to pursue a career in marketing. With experience in fields like accounting, digital marketing, and restaurants, she clearly enjoys taking on challenges. Laura lives the best of both worlds - you'll either catch her hanging out with her friends soaking up the sun in Mexico or flying out to visit her family in California!

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Jake Barr

Host

An acknowledged industry leader, Jake Barr now serves as CEO for BlueWorld Supply Chain Consulting, providing support to a cross section of Fortune 500 companies such as Cargill, Caterpillar, Colgate, Dow/Dupont, Firmenich, 3M, Merck, Bayer/Monsanto, Newell Brands, Kimberly Clark, Nestle, PepsiCo, Pfizer, Sanofi, Estee Lauder and Coty among others. He's also devoted time to engagements in public health sector work with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. At P&G, he managed the breakthrough delivery of an E2E (End to End) Planning Transformation effort, creating control towers which now manage the daily business globally. He is recognized as the architect for P&G’s demand driven supply chain strategy – referenced as a “Consumer Driven Supply Chain” transformation. Jake began his career with P&G in Finance in Risk Analysis and then moved into Operations. He has experience in building supply network capability globally through leadership assignments in Asia, Latin America, North America and the Middle East. He currently serves as a Research Associate for MIT; a member of Supply Chain Industry Advisory Council; Member of Gartner’s Supply Chain Think Tank; Consumer Goods “League of Leaders“; and a recipient of the 2015 - 2021 Supply Chain “Pro’s to Know” Award. He has been recognized as a University of Kentucky Fellow.

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Marcia Williams

Host

Marcia Williams, Managing Partner of USM Supply Chain, has 18 years of experience in Supply Chain, with expertise in optimizing Supply Chain-Finance Planning (S&OP/ IBP) at Large Fast-Growing CPGs for greater profitability and improved cash flows. Marcia has helped mid-sized and large companies including Lindt Chocolates, Hershey, and Coty. She holds an MBA from Michigan State University and a degree in Accounting from Universidad de la Republica, Uruguay (South America). Marcia is also a Forbes Council Contributor based out of New York, and author of the book series Supply Chains with Maria in storytelling style. A recent speaker’s engagement is Marcia TEDx Talk: TEDxMSU - How Supply Chain Impacts You: A Transformational Journey.

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Constantine Limberakis

Host

Constantine Limberakis is a thought leader in the area of procurement and supply management. He has over 20 years of international experience, playing strategic roles in a wide spectrum of organizations related to analyst advisory, consulting, product marketing, product development, and market research.Throughout his career, he's been passionate about engaging global business leaders and the broader analyst and technology community with strategic content, speaking engagements, podcasts, research, webinars, and industry articles.Constantine holds a BA in History from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and an MBA in Finance & Marketing / Masters in Public & International Affairs from the University of Pittsburgh.

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Scott W. Luton

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.

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Greg White

Principal & Host

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.

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Chris Barnes

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.

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Tyler Ward

Director of Sales

Tyler Ward serves as Supply Chain Now's Director of Sales. Born and raised in Mid-Atlantic, Tyler is a proud graduate of Shippensburg University where he earned his degree in Communications. After college, he made his way to the beautiful state of Oregon, where he now lives with his wife and daughter.

With over a decade of experience in sales, Tyler has a proven track record of exceeding targets and leading high-performing teams. He credits his success to his ability to communicate effectively with customers and team members alike, as well as his strategic thinking and problem-solving skills.

When he's not closing deals, you can find Tyler on the links or cheering on his favorite football and basketball teams. He also enjoys spending time with his family, playing pick-up basketball, and traveling back to Ocean City, Maryland, his favorite place!

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Kevin L. Jackson

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 CiscoMicrosoft, 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 UniversityO’Reilly MediaLinkedIn Learning, and Pluralsight.  Mr. Jackson retired from the U.S. Navy in 1994, earning specialties in Space Systems EngineeringCarrier 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.

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Enrique Alvarez

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.

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Kelly Barner

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’.

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Mary Kate Soliva

Host, Veteran Voices

Mary Kate Soliva is a veteran of the US Army and cofounder of the Guam Human Rights Initiative. 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.

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Amanda Luton

Vice President, Production

Amanda is a production and marketing veteran and entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience across a variety of industries and organizations including Von Maur, Anthropologie, AmericasMart Atlanta, and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Amanda currently manages, produces, and develops modern digital content for Supply Chain Now and their clients. Amanda has previously served as the VP of Information Systems and Webmaster on the Board of Directors for APICS Savannah, and founded and managed her own successful digital marketing firm, Magnolia Marketing Group. When she’s not leading the Supply Chain Now production team, you can find Amanda in the kitchen, reading, listening to podcasts, or enjoying time with family.

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Clay Phillips

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.

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Trisha Cordes

Administrative Assistant

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.

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Chantel King

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.

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Lori Sofian

Marketing Coordinator

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.

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Katherine Hintz

Creative Manager & Executive Producer

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.

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Mary Kate Love

Chief of Staff & Host

Mary Kate Love is currently the VP of marketing at Supply Chain Now focused on brand strategy and audience + revenue growth. Mary Kate’s career is a testament to her versatility and innovative spirit: she has experience in start-ups, venture capital, and building innovation initiatives from the ground up: she previously helped lead the build-out of the Supply Chain Innovation Center at Georgia-Pacific and before that, MxD (Manufacturing times Digital): the Department of Defense’s digital manufacturing innovation center. Mary Kate has a passion for taking complicated ideas and turning them into reality: she was one of the first team members at MxD and the first team member at the Supply Chain Innovation Center at Georgia-Pacific.

Mary Kate dedicates her extra time to education and mentorship: she was one of the founding Board Members for Women Influence Chicago and led an initiative for a city-wide job shadow day for young women across Chicago tech companies and was previously on the Board of Directors at St. Laurence High School in Chicago, Young Irish Fellowship Board and the UN Committee for Women. Mary Kate is the founder of National Supply Chain Day and enjoys co-hosting podcasts at Supply Chain Now. Mary Kate is from the south side of Chicago, a mom of two baby boys, and an avid 16-inch softball player. She holds a BS in Political Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

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Joshua Miranda

Marketing Specialist

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.