Having grown up in Florence, Italy, Anna Bottinelli developed an appreciation for art and its cultural significance early in life. Then, what started out as a research assistantship with Robert M. Edsel on his bestselling book Saving Italy flourished into an illustrious career dedicated to recovering and returning lost and/or stolen cultural objects from WWII. In this episode, Anna joins Enrique and Kristi to share her professional journey, the story of the Monuments Men, the Monuments Men and Women Foundation’s current goals and methodologies, what it was like hanging out on set with George Clooney, and other stories from over a decade of restitution.
Welcome to Logistics with Purpose presented by Vector Global Logistics. In partnership with Supply Chain. Now we spotlight and celebrate organizations who are dedicated to creating a positive impact. Join us for this behind the scenes glimpse of the origin stories change, making progress and future plans of organizations who are actively making a difference. Our goal isn’t just to entertain you, but to inspire you to go out and change the world. And now here’s today’s episode of Logistics with Purpose.
Enrique Alvarez (00:34):
Good Day. My name’s Enrique Avarez, and I’m here with Christy Porter for another very interesting episode of Logistics With Purpose. Christy, how are you doing today?
Kristi Porter (00:43):
I’m great, and I am really excited for today’s guest. I know we say that every time, but
Enrique Alvarez (00:48):
No, but yeah, you’re right.
Kristi Porter (00:49):
Yeah. When you get to have such amazing conversations, that’s such a fun part of our job. Um,
Enrique Alvarez (00:53):
Well, it’s a very, it’s definitely one of the highlights of my week cuz it’s so, so many interesting and professional and just inspiring people that I just make my, my week go easier and faster. So, uh, no, and we have a very special guest today. Some I would venture even unique and, uh mm-hmm. <affirmative>, not very common. Something that we haven’t really spoken about in the past episodes.
Kristi Porter (01:15):
That’s right. Yeah. Completely new. Um, when I first learned about the work, I’m excited for everyone to hear because when I first learned about their work, which was through a series I saw on, um, Hulu, uh, which I think may have come from the History channel or something, I was just so utterly impressed. And it was one of those ways that you’re like, Oh, here’s how people are solving a big problem. It was just such a creative endeavor. So I am immediately connected with Anna several years ago and have been following her on LinkedIn, um, dutifully since then. So I’m excited to chat with her in real life, sort of, um, for the first time now. But this is Anna Belli. Um, I hope I unfortunately don’t have a beautiful Italian accent to say that with. So there’s my Georgia accent, um, President of the Monuments Men and Women Foundation. So Anna, welcome. It’s lovely to see you.
Anna Bottinelli (02:04):
Hi, Christy. Thank you. Thank you Enrique. And I’m so happy to be here with you today. And yes, you’re right. I mean, this LinkedIn connection has, uh, turned out via a great opportunity to, um, work together. So I’m really, really glad to delve into this, uh, talk
Kristi Porter (02:20):
Yes. Fast. And you do such fascinating work and you have such a interesting background. And, um, yeah, I’m just, I’m thrilled for people to learn more about it and to bring sort of, um, some of history to the, to the present as well. So, first of all, before we get into the Monuments Men and Women Foundation, let’s hear a little bit about you. Clearly this is not a southern accent like I have, or accent like Enrique has. So tell us a little bit about you, where you grew up in your childhood.
Anna Bottinelli (02:48):
Yeah, there is, in Italy, Texas, sometimes <laugh>. Yeah, Sometimes when they ask me where you’re from, and I say from Italy, say, Oh, Italy, Texas. Well, the real one. So I am Italian, uh, from Florence, born and raised. My parents are actually from, um, northern Italy. But my mom, uh, loved art. So they relocated to Florence before I was born. And, uh, I was born and raised in, in Florence, uh, not too far from all of the beautiful art and architecture. So, um, I, although my parents at the time during my childhood didn’t have jobs in the arts, they always, uh, made a point of taking my brother and I to museums and making sure that it didn’t get lost on us. How lucky we were that, uh, we lived in a place for hundreds of thousands, millions of tourists traveled to every single year. And there we were waiting for a bus stop, uh, in the shadow of, um, of the Cathedral of Florence, you know, So, um, that’s where I was born and raised. I spent my years through high school there. Then I went to Rome for grad, for undergraduate school, and then to London for graduate. And, um, I always studied art cuz I think since the early ages it was just a part of me. It took a while to realize, but, um, that’s what I, I loved, uh, researching and studying and looking at.
Enrique Alvarez (04:05):
It sounds like you had it in your DNA all along. Yeah, I just probably took a little bit. There were maybe asleep and then it just all of a sudden woke. And you, But no, it sounds like you got the love for art from your parents, your mom, it sounded like. Could you tell us a little bit more about kind of those early years in Florence, Uh, something that you might remember from your parents or, or the city or, For
Anna Bottinelli (04:28):
Sure. Yes, for sure. The arts, uh, and I say plural, uh, has always been a part of my life. I’ve done a ballet, I was a ballerina for more than 20 years, and I do consider dance more of a ballet, more than an art, than a sport. So, um, and I’ve, uh, played the piano for many years. So I think it just, my personality is very art oriented and this, um, the beauty and the army that comes from it. Um, the, and there is so much to learn from art as well. It, it shows what greatness is. Sometimes our ego gets a little bit, uh, too big and we think, Oh, we’re doing really good. And then you go to duii and you look at some masterpiece and you’re like, Oh, well that’s what greatness looks like’s a nice self check at times when you, you, you think a little bit too highly of yourself, not to, uh, put yourself down, but just to know what, um, can be done with, uh, someone’s talent. And, uh, I think it, um, encouraged me to really use up my talent to, uh, do whatever, uh, the plan was, you know?
Kristi Porter (05:32):
Yeah. It sounds like an you, um, must have, you must make your parents really proud because that’s really even just unusual to the fact that they would move to Florence just for
Enrique Alvarez (05:42):
The right, just for the
Kristi Porter (05:43):
Art, art scene is really unique. And then how it has just seeped into every aspect of your life as well. So, um, so growing up, or even maybe even now as an adult, who are the people that have been the most influential to you? Sounds like your parents, but, um, you may have some others that you wanna add to that list as well.
Anna Bottinelli (06:01):
Well, truly it is my parents, uh, not just for the, their, um, exposure to the art that of course I’m grateful for, but that kind of happened in a fairly natural way. They’re both inclined for that. And being in Florence make it makes it relatively easy cuz you have it right there. And unless you’re blind to what’s around, right, it’s quite easy to develop an interest and a and, and a liking for those, um, subjects. But I think what, um, they really taught me and that I admire them for, and that help or helped me and my, um, a and still do, it’s their, uh, work ethic for sure. And, um, the, when, when they moved to Florence, they had already started their careers. They were not so young, but they did start from scratch. I have relocated several times and I think having my parents as an example that, um, they, they, they made it, they made it work and they restarted their lives without being intimidated.
Anna Bottinelli (07:00):
That changing place and friends, um, would be a challenge that certainly is a part of me as I make my biggest move to Texas 10 years ago. And that all of the other moves, uh, prior to that. And then I think there honesty, cuz I think it is really easy to start compromising your own values, especially when you enter, um, um, work when you start working and you have people that asking for favors or you have to lean one way or the other. And my parents have always been very true to what they, to what their, the values are and have transmitted that to, uh, my brother and I. And that I think is what is, uh, really, um, shining in a way in the, the work that I do today. And the work of the foundation is being really true to what the values are.
Anna Bottinelli (07:47):
And that is, um, the, the biggest, uh, gift perhaps unless, and I learned then along with my parents, there is my husband who I really, really do look up to a lot. He has, um, accomplished so much in his life and he’s an idealistic, I’m a realistic, I think years of ballet train you to really know your limits and never really think too highly of yourself because there are challenges that you can’t overcome if your body is in shape a certain way. You just can’t bend nature, you know, literally, uh, speaking in, in ballet, you don’t have to blame quite a lot. So if your body is, doesn’t allow for, for, for, for something to happen, you just know that your body, um, you have limits. And I think that made me very realistic. But my husband is idealistic and he has made the impossible possible. So that is very inspirational as well. Cuz sometimes I do find obstacles and I tend to, uh, recognize, okay, these are obstacles I should step back. But thanks to his influence, I I’ve been learning to push forward a little bit and not necessarily take no as an answer. Um, that’s it. Wow. No,
Enrique Alvarez (08:54):
That’s, that’s very interesting. It sounds like you had great parents and it sounds of course that you have a, a great husband. So, uh, what was, by the way, what was the name of your parents?
Anna Bottinelli (09:04):
Brunk is my mom, and Andrea is my dad
Enrique Alvarez (09:08):
And Andrea. And before, before I move into the next, uh, question and continue our conversation down your career path and how you finally came to leading this amazing foundation. Um, any favorite part of, uh, Florence? Any, any special coffee plays or ice cream plays or anything people that might be Yes. Might be listening to us right now. What, what do you remember the most about?
Anna Bottinelli (09:31):
I haven’t actually, what? Something that you get when you move to the United States and you’re from Florence, Everybody becomes your friend. Cuz they all want, of course, best restaurant and cafe whenever they travel to Italy. And now I’m, I’m prepared then I have my own list. Smart. Send away when people ask and I don’t have to spend too much time to,
Enrique Alvarez (09:49):
We will, we will have to see that list just to make sure that you have it.
Anna Bottinelli (09:53):
We include that in our show notes. Yeah.
Enrique Alvarez (09:54):
<laugh>, we should definitely include in the show notes. Perfect.
Anna Bottinelli (09:57):
Yeah, anybody that signs that, that follows the foundation then can get a few Florentine, uh, professional path. <laugh>.
Enrique Alvarez (10:05):
Well, let’s talk a little bit about your professional journey. Uh, and you started mentioning a little bit about that, but if you go back, if you can tell us a bit more about your career path and how you kind of, uh, what pushed you into the monuments men and Women foundation? I mean, cuz it’s very interesting from someone in Florence to end up in Texas and then just leading such an interesting foundation. So, uh, tell us a bit more how, how did you get where you are now? Yeah,
Anna Bottinelli (10:30):
I think there was quite a bit of luck involved, which I think it always plays, uh, a role and certainly a lot of hard work. But, um, when I went to Rome, I studied art history at an American university. It was already pretty clear to me that, um, I love Italy, but I didn’t see myself working and living there. But at the same time, I really like art and art history and I couldn’t make sense of going overseas to study what I could look, uh, on any given day and go out and see in a museum and learn from it on learn about it on slides or, uh, textbooks. So, um, I found this American University, John Ke University in Rome that seemed to be the perfect compromise to get the American education and kind of launchpad into the United States, but at the same time remaining in Italy, uh, and, um, getting the benefit of having, being surrounded by art.
Anna Bottinelli (11:23):
So during my final months right before graduation, I received an email from my, um, Byzantine art professor that said that there was an author that was looking for an Amer for a researcher bilingual, uh, Italian and English, um, art historian, or with an interest in art and history that could do research for his next book. Now this author was Robert Etzel and, um, he had already published the Monuments Men, which talks about what happened to cultural heritage during World War II in Europe, but had left Italy out because it’s such, Italy was an ally of Germany for, uh, the beginning of the war. So it has a completely different, um, history. And he wanted to dedicate a whole book to that. Wow. Um, so that seemed the perfect summer job between undergraduate and graduate. And I applied for the job and then, uh, Robert was doing research in Rome.
Anna Bottinelli (12:14):
And, uh, we met. And what really, uh, strike me was that I had, I was born in Florence. I lived in Florence, uh, 18 years of my life, uh, Florence and Rome. I stu I had a degree in our history and I had never heard anybody telling me that the art of my country, the art of my hometown, Florence, was at risk of being destroyed during World War War. And I thought, that can’t be. I mean, how can, uh, people not know of this subject Especi, maybe Americans are justified people outside of Italy, but how can someone who is Italian and that already likes this, uh, subject doesn’t know? And that’s because at the time, truly the story was quite unknown. And that is what really got me so interested. I think in, in the field of, um, art history, it’s really challenging to find something new to tell.
Anna Bottinelli (13:02):
I always, I mean, there are so many <inaudible> then on like a nuance of this artist maybe was thinking about this when he painted the finger on the Rock. You know, I mean, they, they really, scholars look for such nuances and it’s incredibly interesting. Um, but it’s, here was a huge chapter of World War II that needed to be told and to know that I could possibly play a role in it was really, really exciting. So it started as a summer job and um, uh, Robert tasked me with some pretty hard challenges. I think he wanted to see if I was up to the task. My first assignment was to, um, so the Milan was bombed in, uh, on August 15th, 1943. And several monuments were damaged. And when looking at military reports, some reports mentioned that, um, it was, uh, the bombing to place at night.
Anna Bottinelli (13:51):
Some reports say that the dark was pitch, that the sky was pitch black. And some reports say that there was a full moon and the amount of light was important to Robert, who’s boxer historically accurate. Cause he wanted to make the point. Was it so dark that with the technology at the time there was more margin for error because bombs couldn’t see, or was there a full moon with a lot of light in the sky where they could have had a better chance of distinguishing a residential place from a monument? Right. And so that was my, my job, like figure out <laugh> was dark, was it not? And I spent a month in Milan and I read every piece of article that was ever written on any newspaper at the time. And Wow. Eventually I found this little note that said that there was a full, uh, lunar eclipse that night. So I contacted nasa, which has records of all of the luer and solar. That’s impressive. And it matched the, so
Enrique Alvarez (14:44):
It’s such a detective word
Anna Bottinelli (14:45):
Almost. Yeah. And that, that, that was really, I mean, it proved to Robert that I was up to the task and it proved to me that I love this investigative, um, research work. Um,
Enrique Alvarez (14:55):
So a full moon, I guess.
Anna Bottinelli (14:57):
So there was, there was a full
Enrique Alvarez (14:58):
Was in Eclipse.
Anna Bottinelli (14:59):
Yes. And it just, some reports focused more on that when the, the, the moon was, uh, covered and dark and others moon, that was, um, yes, maybe I got lucky that I, I I was able to get this out <laugh>, but it, they, they get me a job that’s been lasting for 10 years. So, <laugh>
Enrique Alvarez (15:18):
Well, I’m sure you made quite a big impression, that’s for sure.
Anna Bottinelli (15:21):
Yeah. Yeah. That’s
Kristi Porter (15:22):
Amazing. Well, you’ve kind of hinted at it already, so let’s really jump into it. So tell everybody about the mission of the Monuments Men and Women Foundation, and also you mentioned Robert and everything, but tell also just the origin of the organization.
Anna Bottinelli (15:35):
Yes. Um, well, uh, when, I’ll, I’ll answer your second question first cause I think it helps setting up the foundation. Sure. So when Robert, um, Robert got interested in the subject, he realized that there were pretty much no books written on the subject. There is an exceptional book, The Rape of Europe are written by a scholar. It’s a scholarly text, It’s quite dense. It’s the, the book for anybody really wanting to learn the details and the nuances. But it does focus on the whole spectrum of what happened during World War two, two cultural heritage. And it focuses, I would say, more on the bad guys on the Nazis. And to Robert, when he started, um, asking himself what happened to a cultural heritage in Europe during World War ii and who were the people that saved it. He was more interested in the good guys.
Anna Bottinelli (16:21):
Yeah. And so he felt he needed to write books to let their stories known to do so. He started looking for the real peoples that were still living. This is in the early two thousands. So the monuments, men and women that were still out there, the men were easier to find because they don’t change last. And when they married the women, not so to find cause they do change. And of course they were unmarried when they served, and then they changed names. So that took a little bit, uh, more research, but he was able to track down 21 of them, the only person, um, ever to meet as many. And he recorded their stories. He became really good friends with them, uh, not just them, also their families. He was invited to their, um, memorial ceremonies when they passed. So we developed, he developed this wonderful friendship where it wasn’t just learning about their, what they did during World War II from the official reports, but it was learning from their own personal accounts.
Anna Bottinelli (17:10):
And as he was gathering all of their photos, all of their documents, all of their stories, he realized that he needed a foundation that would be the repository for all of these stories. And that would, um, preserve the legacy, honor them, and, uh, make sure that this legacy was, um, would have positive repercussions in the future. So the foundation was set up with these objectives. Now, we accomplished this first suggestive, I don’t think organizations, uh, many organizations can say that this like mission accomplished the way, um, or for what, um, for what they were created. So we shifted, um, after our first decade, our mission, um, shifted more towards recovering the works of art that are still missing since the end of the war. The monuments men and women served during the war. Initially, their service was to, um, well, they, they volunteered, I should say.
Anna Bottinelli (18:04):
These were men and women that already had established careers. They, many of them had families, many of them had children. They were out of the age, uh, group that would’ve been drafted. But they were all, um, architects, um, art historians, artists, librarians. They had studied in Europe, many of them in Italy. They just couldn’t stand, uh, looking at the distractions the World War II was causing without going to Europe and help somehow. So they volunteered initially to, um, try and, um, minimize as much as possible damages to, um, to monuments. It’s only once they were already in Europe that they realized that there was a premed theft that the Nazi were carry out. That’s not how their mission started. But once they realized that thousands, if not millions of works of art have been stolen, then their mission expands to actually finding this arc and returning it. And they did find millions of objects at the end of the war and return it. But there’s still a lot that’s missing. And that’s what now the foundation in this 2.0 phase, that’s where the, the mission is, uh, focused on.
Enrique Alvarez (19:07):
And, and I quick, um, kind of follow up question on what you said there, to make it even clearer for everyone that’s listening to us. So who, who started this, uh, organization or movement at the beginning? I know, and the other is, the other question I had for you is, is were there primarily Italian people or there were just men and women all over Europe? I mean, who started the actual movement that then became the organization that then became the foundation that then reshifted towards what you’re just talking about? But it’s interesting whoever came up with the idea first.
Anna Bottinelli (19:37):
So there was a guy, uh, a conservator George style. He had served already in World War I. So that tells you the age, right? Not a, a a not a young boy. And he knew that with, um, he had looked very carefully at what happened in Spain during the, um, the, the Spanish War in the late 1930s. And he saw that the weapon of destruction, the, the, the weapons of war had developed into a really, uh, heavy bombs that caused a lot of damage in World War I. Those bombs didn’t exist. Um, the Spanish war was kind of a trial feel to see how destructive this new weapons were. And so he was already, before the, um, Hitler had even invaded Poland, he was already very alert and looking what was happening in Europe, knowing that had there been a second war war, the damage would’ve, the damage to the the heritage in Europe would’ve been far worse than anything anybody had, um, witnessed in World War I.
Anna Bottinelli (20:37):
So right. Um, in, uh, 1940, that’s when he, uh, goes to, uh, the, the president pretty much, I mean, there are several states, but the president of the United States advocating for, uh, a commission to be created. And the technical will be the monuments men, um, the, the monuments Fine Arts and Archives Commission that is part, uh, of the US Army that would have people like himself and other experts to, um, work together with the actual troops advising them, um, drafting maps that would highlight the monuments or, um, sites of historical importance so that when invading in the country, um, or to liberate rate the, the countries in Europe, they would know which targets to avoid in so many words. And so this is how it started. Now you think it started, the first monuments man ever was Mason Hammond professors of classics. And, uh, he landed in Sicily in August 43.
Anna Bottinelli (21:38):
So a month after the, the Allies, um, landed. But, so the, the f effort was an allied lead, and therefore it was the British and American led. So these, the total, uh, number of monuments, men and women never went, uh, more than 348 in total. There were never all of them at the same time in Europe, and especially during combat. They were just a handful in Italy. And, um, and, uh, less than 20 on the, on continental Europe, the, the, it’s only after the war that once they have to return all of this, uh, millions of works of art, that they need experts in different languages and different, uh, fields. Uh, and that’s when you start having monuments, men from other countries. So there are French monuments, men and women, uh, Hungarian, Polish, um, Belgium, Dutch. So 14 countries were represented in Old Japan as well. And, um, no, Italians technically. Wow. There were several Italian experts that helped, but they were never officially recognized as part of the unit. Uh, and Italy as, like I said, change sides. So it was, um, it put himself in a tricky position. Right. And of course, the, I had to draw the line on how much to trust Italian personnel to, um, not sure of where they stood.
Kristi Porter (23:02):
Um, I, you also, you mentioned the history of the organization, but you’ve also had multiple roles there. So tell us, you said you’ve been there for a little over a decade. So tell us about kind of your progression and the taking on of different responsibilities and roles and, uh, clearly you’re an excellent detective and researcher, so I know that’s played a big part of your work as well.
Anna Bottinelli (23:22):
Well, the, when I started, uh, working for Robert on the book, I was working for Robert, the author, let’s say, not Robert, the founder of the foundation. The transition into the foundation happened again, great coincidence. I was pretty much done with the research for, uh, Robert’s book, Saving Italy when a World War II veteran from Chicago called the Foundation with eight books that he had picked up while serving in Italy throughout the countryside, from a bomb from a church that had been bombed. And he saw them lying in the countryside. He thought as soon as it rains this, um, 15th century, um, books will be destroyed. So he put them in his backpack and brought them home. And he had tried to return them for a while. His nephew had contacted the, the Italian embassy in the nineties, the, the consulate in Chicago. But at the time, nobody really, in the nineties and early 2000, nobody knew about this.
Anna Bottinelli (24:13):
So when this older person called and said, I have books to return, I was like, You’re crazy that that’s okay, keep them. Um, but then he, his nephew saw the monuments men, um, the, the announcement of the Monuments Men movie. I don’t think the movie had come out yet, but it had been announced. And so he got intrigued and read one of Robert Eel’s books. And so he realized that there was a foundation that was helping people returning so that he contacted the foundation. And because of the books coming from Italy, being in Italian, the, the foundation needed me and Robert Etzel, the author, didn’t need me anymore as much. So it was kind of a smooth transition. You got involved with the foundation to return these eight books. And it was, um, I mean, yes, it was my first, the first restitution I was involved, but it was also so special cuz it was giving something back to Italy.
Anna Bottinelli (24:59):
That, um, being in Italian of course, it just means a little bit more if I can help my country getting some of, um, what’s, uh, still missing. And we work, um, these were eight books that the University of Naples, which is one of the oldest universities in Europe, um, their library has manuscripts and very rare books. This eight, some of them, one of them was, uh, the first, uh, one of the first, the first edition of Newton Study of the Eye. Wow. Um, they were, um, they were extraordinary and imperfect conditions. And it’s true, had this, um, soldier not picked them up, they would’ve probably, um, got destroyed losses under the, the rainfalls of the fall started. They would’ve, um, just, um, disintegrated. So in a way he was, um, a custodian for 70 years and he was celebrated by the embassy for coming forward. And Italy was very grateful. We worked with their military police in Italy that handles this sort of, uh, restitution. And it was just a great, great celebration. But that’s how my transition into the work of the foundation happened. And once I was there, I, I stayed.
Enrique Alvarez (26:07):
You never left.
Anna Bottinelli (26:08):
So I continued doing research and I was, um, just a researcher for quite, uh, a long time. Then, uh, I became more involved with, um, the hiring of researchers I have. Um, how,
Enrique Alvarez (26:20):
How big is the organization, if you don’t mind me interacting
Anna Bottinelli (26:23):
Quite small. It is quite small. Uh, we accomplished so much that people tend to think we’re this, um, first
Enrique Alvarez (26:29):
Of all. Right. It sounds like you guys have tons of things to do. Yeah.
Anna Bottinelli (26:32):
Yes. No, we have, you know, when you have dedicated people, you don’t need many, you just need quality. Yeah. Uh, we’re a team of five. Um, which of who, um, Robert Etzel. I’m counting him among the five and he’s volunteering his time, so he’s not really part of the team as much as he, but he is the soul of the foundation. And then we have some, um, experts in, in Europe. But our research is so, um, diverse that rather than having a huge staff, we just have great context. And so if we need something, we will call, uh, someone up. And everybody, I think something we’ve been very successful at doing throughout the years is, um, building an excellent reputation. And, um, everybody’s always just very happy to help us when we need some, um, specific research that, uh, you know, might not make sense to necessarily have someone that speaks Hungarian. But it’s great to have a contact that if we come up with some research in that language can step in and help. Wow,
Kristi Porter (27:29):
That’s so cool. Um, well you mentioned a second ago about the Monuments Men, which is a great movie <laugh> as well. Hollywood thought it would be a great book to turn into a movie, and they did 2014. So for anybody who hasn’t seen it, go find it, go rent it, it’s George Clooney, Matt Damon, two of my favorites, uh, Bill Murray, John Goodman, and so many, so many others. It would take us a long time just to list all those stars in it. But I also understand that you had a connection to the movie as well. So what was that?
Anna Bottinelli (27:56):
Well, that was right when I transitioned into the foundation. Perfect time. Yes. I, I was, I wasn’t at the time as involved in the, all of the correspondence with George K’s team. Cause I was just, uh, I was, That would’ve been fun though, <laugh>. So, um, in the, but what Sony did, um, Sony is, um, the producer of, Together with, with Smokehouse, which is George K’s company, they produced the movie and they really embraced the whole mission. It wasn’t just making a movie. First of all, they did it as quickly as they could. Cause they really wanted as many monuments men to still be alive to watch it. Uh, that was a choice. They didn’t have to do it. They could have taken four years. Uh, they did it fast cuz they knew this men are, and, and women are in their late nineties and every day matters.
Anna Bottinelli (28:42):
And, um, they embraced the mission, which is to raise visibility. It doesn’t do what good does it does to make a movie. But then they wanted to really reach students, an educator. So they created a website that it no longer exists, but at the time, for a year from the launch of the movie and for it was an educational website in support of the movie. And the foundation created all of this extra content where professors and teachers could go and look at it was at this, um, multimedia map where you could follow in the footsteps of the monuments men and trace the works of our and see where they had been headed then. All of that, all of that content. But that’s what, uh, we worked on and provided. And then to, uh, George Flo’s credit, cuz I, I’m, he didn’t have to do it.
Anna Bottinelli (29:25):
He recognized he was so grateful to all of the work that we had done in the years that he invited all of us researchers to Berlin to be on set for three days. Wow. We were on set and, um, saw him. I mean, which being on set of a movie is fun. The first five minutes, minutes and dreadful the last, the other 10 hours. Cause it’s the same thing over and over and over again. But you still get to be on set with this, uh, stellar cast. And like I said, he didn’t have to do it, but it really showed how grateful and fully understanding of the, of the, um, of the work that we had put throughout the years. So he, so we were, um, so we were all there to see him film a couple of the scenes and that was great. And he even spent some time with us showing some of the films he had already shot and getting our feedback.
Anna Bottinelli (30:12):
Again, he doesn’t, you think of George Clooney, right? He’s one of the most famous Hollywood start. And he could be very arrogant or very full of himself. Instead he was as normal or have you talked to his third assistant? Yeah. <laugh>. Right, Exactly. No, he, he, it was just really for us that, you know, you rarely get the credit when something like this happen. And you always do a lot of work behind the scenes, but it’s not necessarily recognized. It was just very validating for us to be there. And then he invited us all on the premier tours. So from New York to, uh, again, Berlin, Milan, London, and Paris. That was, um, not all of us joined in all of the, all of the places, but I was in Italy, joined the Milan and Paris and we all kind of took turns. But again, that was, uh, quite exceptional. And, uh, celebrating in Paris, the end of the premier tour with all of the cast, um, dancing. And it was certainly, uh, quite a unique experience. It, a Hollywood experience. Yeah,
Enrique Alvarez (31:07):
I know it sounds like a very, very, uh, amazing, um, experience, Unique experience for sure. And something that is, as you said, very validating and speaks very highly of the people and, uh, the people that were involved in the project. Not only, um, the actual organization, but the movie itself. So I congratulations to them. We’ll, we’ll add the, the link to the movie on our, on our show as well. It’s, it is a really good movie. It too now, well
Anna Bottinelli (31:32):
That’s, the book is too, So my
Enrique Alvarez (31:34):
Book is true. I’m gonna have to go back and read the book. Yes. We should put a link to the book as well. And you’re right about that. Um, so you’ve worked on multiple things since that one. I mean, that one probably was, uh, a little bit more of the, uh, I guess eclectic in many different ways and probably one of the one that you remember the most for all the traveling and all these different things that happened. But what other projects or, or have you worked on past, uh, or, or recent, I mean, what other kind of projects are you working on right now?
Anna Bottinelli (32:05):
Well, um, returning work so far is, um, our main mission. And we have returned more than 30 objects since in, in the last decade. That takes, um, a lot of work. And sometimes I do get, um, impatient and I want to announce a return, but then I say, Oh, we’re not there yet. So, um, sometimes we have this, uh, months and months where we don’t necessarily come out with news. And that’s because we are really hard at work researching. And, um, if we, we had more people and to have more people with need more funds, then we would probably go faster. But it is such a, an exceptional learning curve anytime we research one of these leads that we receive. Cause they all are unique in their own way. So there is an equity cutter, a cookie cutter system that you can apply and it’s kind of on a, on, um, automatic, You know, you check this or you check this, then this is the result.
Anna Bottinelli (33:04):
Everything needs to really be taken on its own and analyze the war time context, uh, in which it sets itself. It could be a different type of object. We’ve returned books, but we’ve done tapestries, we’ve done sculptures, we’ve done coins, we’ve done, uh, paintings. You know, each medium requires a different approach. But I’ve been involved in several of these, uh, restitution. The last one was in, um, in all in Germany this summer. I, I, I was in Europe, so we, um, I traveled to to Germany to return this to nine 10 coins that had been taken from the museum and a sculpture that wasn’t part of the museum collection, but it has ties to the city of Oman. It was a really, um, lovely ceremony that we did there. And before then, a few months, um, before we returned to drawings to the National Museum in Waro.
Anna Bottinelli (33:57):
Uh, and that was, um, that was a very big deal. This, um, drawings done by a Polish artist. They were part of a series of, um, 18 other of of 20 other drawings. 18 of them had been found at the end of the war two had been missing since last November. And we were able to return the last two that complete a series. So it’s already, uh, exceptional when we, you can return something to a museum, but when you can even just return something that is part of a series of, um, this little sketches of several towns in Poland, uh, it was really meaningful. And the, the officials that the in Poland were, um, truly exciting. Poland has more than 60,000 works of our missing under list of, uh, of works of missing. So it’s a, it’s a long list, but you know, it takes, um, one, you need to start somewhere. So every little object that is return, uh, matters.
Enrique Alvarez (34:48):
And every country has, uh, their own list. I mean, they basically have a list of things that they have. It would be
Anna Bottinelli (34:53):
Easier if they
Enrique Alvarez (34:54):
Did like a lost and found kind of that you’re like the lost and found of, uh, world. Uh,
Anna Bottinelli (35:01):
Unfortunately, the reason it would be what would be really helpful is if there was a centralized database where all of this country and the reason, So yes, I think each country more or less knows what is missing. But this database don’t speak among the, don’t communicate among themselves. And that’s what makes the research harder. Um, because if you don’t know exactly what country, if you’re working on a, on a object, but you don’t know what country will seeking from, then you really have to check all of these databases. And usually the more important the works of VR are, the more likely they are to have made it to the database. Something that’s less important than it might not even be, um, recorded anywhere. Um, but, uh,
Kristi Porter (35:41):
Especially I guess if it’s, uh, a public or, you know, like a public museum versus a private collector, a family heirloom, that kinda thing.
Anna Bottinelli (35:48):
Yeah, exactly. Exactly. Absolutely.
Kristi Porter (35:50):
Do you have, uh, I’m curious, those are a couple of good examples. Do you have a favorite example of a project that you’ve worked on?
Anna Bottinelli (35:56):
A Well, I said this, uh, returning this eight books to Italy was certainly a favorite, um, because of helping, uh, Italy. Yeah, just, uh, but I think maybe my favorite, We returned, we returned three paintings to a small museum. Well, it’s not even a small museum. I mean, it’s a, the, the town museum of, um, of desal. It’s a town in East Germany. And they had, um, more than 600 works of art taken. Many of them probably by the Soviet army. And they, the curator there started working when she was quite young and was, um, was soon to retire when we call her up, telling her that we had these three paintings that, um, had been taken during the war by a veteran, by, by, by a soldier that contacted us because he really wanted to return them. And she had spent her whole life, um, hoping that three pa that some paintings will go back.
Anna Bottinelli (36:55):
Her job was to care for the wartime losses and look for them. That was her job. And she spent 50 years working in this museum and nothing ever showed up. And she was three months from retiring and here we are calling her. And she started crying on the phone. She said, I’ll have to call you back cuz I can’t speak right now. And then she called us back like an hour later and said, Okay, um, um, let, let, let’s, um, let’s go over this again. Wow. It was just so meaningful to her. And then when we traveled to Germany and we hung them back on the walls of the museum, her smile, it was this rewarding sense of gratitude that she had spent her whole life hoping. And, and this is why when, um, so when people come contact us, we really stress the fact that nobody’s going to get upset with them on the country. There is an unanimous sense of gratitude for, um, almost being custodians of these objects that who knows what could have happened to them and for coming forward and returning them. It’s, um, they’re very moving experiences. But yes, I think this one was special because you really saw the, the impact that it has on the, the people that are on the receiving end.
Enrique Alvarez (38:03):
Absolutely. I mean that their life’s work, right. Being kind of validated or, uh, realized at that moment when they finally return some of these art pieces, which are literally invaluable. And and they have so, so much filled with emotions as well, right? So it’s not only the actual value, but the emotions and the, the history that they carry. Um, we’re in logistics, right? So we’re a supply chain company and, and we love logistics in this industry. Could you tell us a little more about the actual process or of retrieving some of these and then also maybe some of the challenges that you have faced, uh, in the past. Right. How, let’s say, and I’m guessing every different art piece has a different way of retreat being retrieved, but in general, I mean the paintings that you just talked about, how, how they actually get to the final destination.
Anna Bottinelli (38:51):
Yeah. Well, we have a total free number that people can call and we don’t charge anything for this. We kind of really following the footsteps of the monuments, men and women that return works of art. It didn’t matter who, it didn’t matter how. And uh, so this is something that we don’t charge for. We get contacted daily by people that have either they just, um, bought something and they’re unsure or they have, uh, something that was passed down by their relatives and they know that they served during the war and they wanna make sure that there is no issue with them. We have to high grade constantly because of being a small team. If we get something that is really, really perspective, then we might put something else that we’re working on, on hold to shift our, um, our attention there. So we’re constantly kind of shifting around, but, um, we tackle everything from different points of view, which I think is a strength of our team.
Anna Bottinelli (39:41):
We’re not just our history focus, our legal, uh, we have a military historian, we have a, a conservator expert, we have a Providence research expert and, and our historian. So we approach it from different, uh, points of view to create almost a bulletproof, um, view of what the context of the, how the, the, the object came, um, became lost or came about, became in the possession of this person. And then we work with the families. Like I said, we, we, the, the family needs to come forward and give up the object voluntarily. We not a law enforcement agency, we cannot knock on peoples door and go in and say, We need to take this off your wall. We really need people to, um, to come to us and give it. And so far we’ve had no problem. Uh, we, even the people, it happened in a couple of instances.
Anna Bottinelli (40:35):
Um, somebody was, um, maybe was excel for the three paintings to Germany, wasn’t too sure about returning them because he had lost several bodies during the war. I was like, I’m not giving something back to Germany. Um, but, uh, when so many of my friends, uh, died, right? But, uh, when that happens, then we, we will talk to the person. We, um, will share more about the monuments, men and women, more about what happened during World War ii. Cuz maybe they don’t know, they don’t know the German museums maybe are the museums that suffered the most during the war. And, um, it wasn’t their fault. And so it might, we don’t push people, we don’t force them. We just, uh, work with them. And when they, when the moment is right, then they will turn, they will come to us and turn it over. So this has always happened and only a couple of instances of, uh, forgeries we had to involve the FBI with which we have great, uh, relationships.
Anna Bottinelli (41:26):
Uh, but if we can avoid it, we, we, we do all we can to avoid it. And then once we realize, once we have, we complete all of the research and we know where something should be returned. So that’s when we involve, um, usually the, um, a representation in Washington because it’s very, our work is successful as long as there is visibility of the things that we return, it would be great to just go and hand them over. But if nobody knows of them, then nobody knows that this is what we do. Nobody knows that they will be praised and thanked for coming forward. And we need people to know so that more things come out. So we always, um, have some sort of ceremony either in Washington or at one of the cons of the consulates of the country that this, um, object is going back to.
Anna Bottinelli (42:11):
And then we have a similar ceremony in the country, uh, that’s receiving it. And this way it pleases kind of both constituencies rights. The people in the states, especially if they’re old, then they cannot necessarily travel. They get this sense of closure where they can participate and hand over the object. And then the people in Europe also get their, uh, celebration for welcoming something home. That’s super. The challenges, you ask about challenges, The challenges are that all of this is expensive <laugh>. And, um, it’s not, you know, there is a lot of, we, if we could get a dollar for all of the emails we receive praising us for what we do, we would have no issue
Enrique Alvarez (42:51):
Anna Bottinelli (42:51):
Enrique Alvarez (42:51):
You can’t pay things with the emails, can you? Right. Yeah, yeah.
Anna Bottinelli (42:54):
<laugh>. And, um, you know, that’s the challenge, um, is that, uh, there’s clearly a need for what we do and uh, an appreciation is just not so easy to translate into support. And, uh,
Enrique Alvarez (43:05):
The governments don’t necessarily pitch in. I mean, I would’ve hoped that, hey, you’re returning something to Germany, for example, or Italy or Spain. I mean, I would ask us a country, wouldn’t you like to pay for that to be returned?
Anna Bottinelli (43:18):
<laugh>? Yeah. Well that would be
Enrique Alvarez (43:20):
Nice. It’s yours. Like,
Anna Bottinelli (43:22):
No, because we don’t charge, we don’t create a clause and a contract that says we’re gonna
Enrique Alvarez (43:27):
Give this so entirely voluntarily. But if they could pitch in, if they want,
Anna Bottinelli (43:32):
Enrique Alvarez (43:32):
Could do they or we’ll
Kristi Porter (43:34):
Put that out. They could
Anna Bottinelli (43:35):
<laugh>, they could, sorry. They could, in a couple of instances we had families that did receive something back that, um, help with the donation. So,
Enrique Alvarez (43:45):
Or if you’re a government now you’re listening to us. Please go ahead. Hey.
Kristi Porter (43:50):
Enrique Alvarez (43:51):
Go ahead, Christie.
Kristi Porter (43:53):
Well, I’m, I’m also curious because it’s been 70 over 70 years since World War ii and of course war as we are well aware of every day’s headlines, war conflict are still ongoing around the world. Um, and so, you know, and always people are looking to, as you mentioned, that it was started because somebody recognized this form of cultural oppression and, um, wanting to remove cultural heritage and the identity of a country and things like that. So as you studied the, the history that comes with this, and in your research, I’m curious what lessons you’ve learned from your work that you want others to know just about cultural heritage or preservation or how this, you know, we may not recognize it, as you said, people, the other pro issue with your work is there little things scattered all over houses all over the world and things like that as well. So when it comes to cultural oppression, how do we recognize it? How do we stop it? And just what would you like people to know on that topic?
Anna Bottinelli (44:49):
Oh, that’s a, that that
Kristi Porter (44:53):
Anna Bottinelli (44:54):
Kristi Porter (44:54):
What’s your plan for world go? Yeah. Um,
Anna Bottinelli (44:59):
I think, I think here’s the big lesson of what happened during World War ii. The, the genocide was so successful in all the wrong ways, right? Because Hitler didn’t just, um, kill the Jews. He still, he stole from them. He took their their property away so that they would witness that everything that they owned, everything that they believed in, everything that they like was being taken away. And I think this is really the recipe for ma um, genocide. And we saw it in the more recent years we saw it with, uh, isis. They didn’t go straight and kill people. They destroyed their art, they destroyed their monuments. There is this sense of humiliation that is part of the killing that takes place, right? So in a way, what we’re learning from World War II is that when we see a people destroying and other people’s art and culture and monuments, something worse is going to happen.
Anna Bottinelli (45:55):
It’s a warning sign in a way. And that should really, uh, start the alarm for the governments to act, to minimize damage, cuz it’s not just the sake of destroying art for its own sake. So that to me is a very big less that can be learned and that can really be applied, um, forever, because unfortunately had guys that will be bad guys forever. And we see it in Ukraine. Some photos that you see of how monuments are being protected or works of are being taken into storage. They could be superposed to, uh, pictures of World War ii. They’re the same mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So this is happening now as it happened, um, almost, uh, well more than 70 years ago. Yeah. So this would be my first big lesson. Sure. Now, as it comes to the small, uh, objects, the, I think anybody that has something that was brought home that was brought to the United States, especially from Europe during the war years, should ask themselves, where did this come from?
Anna Bottinelli (46:51):
Mm-hmm. <affirmative> in the end, all of the, the works of our that were taken had been created prior to the war. Right? So at some point, where were they during the war? Did this, uh, was this, um, had this been stolen, had this been, um, in a house that was bombed and then scattered? You know, that I think it’s our duty if we know that the could be a connection with the war to ask ourselves, is this work of art truly? Can I own it? Or is there maybe someone else that’s out there looking for it? And this is what the foundation does. We’re just available to kind of answer this question. We, um, it, it’s not a, a quick answer, but we, uh, we address every single lead that comes through our door. We address it. We are proud of never letting one email unanswered. So we really try as much as we can to help everybody. Incredible.
Enrique Alvarez (47:37):
Thank you Anna. Yeah, Thank you very much for sharing all this. Uh, it’s been a really engaging conversation and uh, thank you so much for leading this amazing foundation as well. So if you had to, uh, give a call of action to future generations, right. People that are listening to us, uh, younger generations in particular with everything you have learned, not only from studying it cuz you have extensively studying, uh, have been extensively studying all this, but just from what you’ve seen. And, um, what would that be? I mean, what what do you want like future generations to learn, to create, uh, just a better future for, for the world and for the history and the arts and monuments?
Anna Bottinelli (48:15):
I think my generation, uh, especially as an Italian, uh, grew up thinking that the government would take care of everything. Um, in Europe especially, or, uh, we don’t have the philanthropy, uh, the sense of philanthropy that the United States has where, um, donors do help supporting the arts. All of the, the museums here are privately are private, uh, and, and support by donors in, uh, Europe. Most of them are government owned. So there is this tendency, especially in Europe, thinking that the government will take care of that monument. The government will restore this work of art. The monument will, the, the government will protect it. Well, the government doesn’t have enough money to do all of this. So it truly is our responsibility to care for this, um, for this, um, monuments and art and to play whatever role we can in their preservation. I’m sure that when not through Dame was burning down a couple of years ago, I’m sure everybody around the world, uh, held their breath course and was concerned of what’s gonna happen.
Anna Bottinelli (49:17):
It doesn’t matter if the person was going to museums or not on their free time, they still care that Notre Dame wouldn’t collapse to the ground. And that’s because inherent inherently, I think we all care, even if art is not a priority of life, this cultural heritage of western civilization, eastern civilization, it it’s part of us. And if as if something is part of you, then you need to play, uh, a role in making sure it’s, it, it’s safe and it remains for our children to see and our grandchildren. So it’s, it’s too easy to just sit back and think that someone else will do their job. We each have to do our job. And whether that’s to be directly involved, whether it is to just give, um, financial support if one is able to, or to just spread the word and raise awareness, uh, we can each find our own way of, uh, playing a role.
Kristi Porter (50:03):
Enrique Alvarez (50:05):
That’s well said. Yeah, absolutely.
Kristi Porter (50:07):
And you mentioned you’re in phase two of, or or 2.0 of the, um, organization. Can you tell us anything else that’s coming up next? Or is there a phase three already in the works?
Anna Bottinelli (50:18):
Well, <laugh> no, we’re, we’re, we’re pretty busy with our phase two. Okay. So the phase two is really focusing on returning on, on finding works of art that are still missing and returning them to the right full owners. We, um, we created, um, we launched in March a very fun and engaging, um, game. It’s, uh, I have it here. It’s a deck of playing cards. Cool World Wari most wanted art. So this are cards that feature 52 of the most, um, important if you wanna say works of art that are still missing since the end of the war. And these are works of art that did then, um, that we have every reason to believe have survived. In other words, they were not destroyed during the war that were not, uh, there are no reports that, uh, would make us believe that they burned down or something like that.
Anna Bottinelli (51:08):
And in fact, many of them, you see that when the, the picture on the card is in color, it’s because they resurface on the market in more recent years, right? Yeah. When you have the, when they’re in black and white, then it’s more likely that they, they did then mm-hmm. <affirmative>, they, we lost track of them during the Warriors and um, they’re somewhere, but we don’t know where. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. But the ones in color, it is because in the sixties and seventies and even eighties, uh, they were in the market. They were sold at auctions and on auction by auction houses that, um, are all of the names that we know of. But because of their, um, privacy clause, they cannot disclose who the buyers were. And so these are, we have, these don’t belong to the, this don’t belong to the current owners, but, um, we cannot, like I said, force them to hand them over.
Anna Bottinelli (51:53):
But we can raise visibility about all of this works of art that are missing in a way of devaluing. Right? I mean, if everybody knows that these are still an, and, uh, people own work of art a little bit because they like the painting a lot because it’s sort of good investment and so <laugh> it becomes a pretty bad investment if you have, um, quite a bit of money tied up in something that is not yours. Yeah. And so this was a very, um, an exceptional idea that one of our board members had. And we worked for two years to make it happen. We collaborated with, uh, heirs of this, uh, of the Jewish families or the families that this paintings were taken from. We work with, um, experts in the field, legal representatives, and, uh, the FBI has praised it. The US Army has praised it.
Anna Bottinelli (52:37):
And, uh, so this is, uh, the most recent exciting project that we launched and that really allows anybody to get involved. And with, uh, playing cards is a fun, um, it’s just a fun approach to this subject. Less intimidating that maybe reading a book on the subject, reading a book. And, and then the other big thing that will, uh, will, um, be completed next year, the National World War II Museum, um, in New Orleans has an exceptional campus. They’re finishing their third building. Um, and the ground floor of this building will have a permanent exhibition about the monuments, men and women. One of the spaces will recreate a salt mine. Um, the paintings at the end of the war, well, the works of art at the end of the war were found in so mines and in castles, Well, mines and castles, copper mines, soul mines. And, um, it must have been quite a shock for this monuments man to go, uh, hundreds of feet underground and find, um, some of the Europe’s masterpiece, um, in the dark of this caves. And so the museum embraced our suggestion of creating a soul mine like Rome, to kind of give the visitors and they receive more than 700,000 visitors a year. So that’s gonna be a huge crowd that will be exposed to the mission of the monuments men and women. We’re quite excited.
Kristi Porter (53:55):
You can invite your friend George to show up as well. <laugh>
Anna Bottinelli (53:58):
Enrique Alvarez (54:01):
Or, or anyone else on that movie, I guess. Such a
Kristi Porter (54:03):
Enrique Alvarez (54:04):
Yeah, we were not gonna just, Right, If George is not available, Matt, maybe. But, uh, anyways, uh, no, this is fantastic. Thank you very much for sharing. It’s a great idea. And it has been a very, very interesting conversation and said before, I’m pretty sure that people that are listening to this are not only excited and inspired, but they’re also might have a lot of questions, right. I mean, maybe they, they want to contact you. Where, where, where can they contact you? What’s that? Uh, and we’ll put all the information, uh, when we post this interview, but, well, what’s a good way to get in touch with you or support the monuments Men and Women Foundation?
Anna Bottinelli (54:39):
Well, we have a website, Monuments Men and women foundation.org. And, um, there are several ways of contacting us. We have, we, we, we try to make it as easy as possible. We have different forms that people can fill out, whether they’re reporting a work of ours so that it goes straight to the researchers that handle, um, that sort of inquiry. And then we have other forms that is just to contact us. They can, uh, sign up to our newsletter. We come out with three to four paper issues every, uh, year and other communications we don’t, uh, spam mailboxes. So I highly suggest to sign up cause they’re not going to be usually a few people unsubscribe. Cause we, we don’t, um, we don’t send too many emails. Only when we have really, uh, something great to, to announce. And, um, we have a membership program that allows people to become members of the foundation.
Anna Bottinelli (55:32):
We don’t have a museum. Right. And, um, but the monuments, men and women of World War II had, um, connections with museums, right? All over the country and actually all over the world. So we created a monuments men and women museum network with the idea of gathering under the same umbrella. All of these museums from all over the world as shared ties to the monuments, men and women by becoming members of our foundation. You get free entrance to these museums all over the world to the ones that have joined so far. And I’m sure many more will join. But it’s, uh, more than 30 museums, I think now including, um, the Oakland Museum in New Zealand and a couple of museums in England and in, uh, in Germany. So it’s, um, it’s a, it’s, um, it’s being an nice idea that, um, that addresses what could seem a shortcoming of not having a facility to welcome people. But this way we are letting them, we’re allowing them to, to go into and explore all of these museums. So there is memberships, there is signups, there is newsletter, and otherwise there is a very straightforward donation that we we’ll say.
Enrique Alvarez (56:41):
No. Absolutely. And, uh, thank you once again. Uh, I guess before we’ll let you go, uh, Anna, if you don’t mind, uh, saying your last name one more time before I butcher it on the <laugh>. What is, how do you pronounce
Anna Bottinelli (56:56):
Anna Bot? Bot.
Enrique Alvarez (56:58):
Bot just sounds so much better when you say it, but Anna Bot and, um, thank you so much. It’s been a pleasure talking to you today. Of course. Come with our full support. I’m sure a lot of our listeners are going to be very excited and interested in this conversation. And Christie, you wanna close the show for us this time?
Kristi Porter (57:15):
Yeah, I’m, I’m just so excited for this conversation.
Enrique Alvarez (57:17):
I know, this is great. It’s
Kristi Porter (57:18):
Been a long time coming. I love World War II history and, um, so yeah, I think it’s really amazing and hopefully the cause will continue. There’s still obviously a lot of work to do and I think one of the really unique and interesting things that you guys do is get the general public involved and even just your, um, advice on cultural heritage and looking around at your family heirlooms. Do you have something that, you know came from Europe during World War II that you can just ask the question? I think that’s a really simple step that a lot of people can take really no matter where they are in the world. Um, and yeah, looking to see where did that come from? Does it belong to us or does it need to go back to somebody else? And I think that’s a really great first step, but I love the fact that you’ve, um, really depended on the public to get the word out and to get involved in the mission instead of just locking yourselves up in a research room and, and taking all that on yourselves. It’s really incredible. So thank you for the amazing work you, you do. This was wonderful. Um, can’t wait to continue the conversation into the future. Can’t wait to hear how our listeners love this conversation as well. But thank you so much for your time and thanks for everyone for tuning in. We’ll see you next time.
Anna Bottinelli (58:28):
Thank you. Thank you
Anna Bottinelli, Born and raised in Florence, Italy, Anna Bottinelli earned her B.A. in History of Art from John Cabot University (JCU) in Rome, graduating Magna Cum Laude. There, she was also the recipient of numerous accolades including the 2010 JCU Excellence in Art History Award and JCU Leadership Award. In 2011, she received her M.A. in Art History at The Courtauld Institute of Art in London, with specialization in the Franciscan and Dominican Art of 13th century Italy. At the same time, Ms. Bottinelli began work as the lead Italian research assistant to #1 New York Times Bestselling Author Robert Edsel on his project to write about the Monuments Men and their preservation work in Italy during World War II. Her work contributed greatly to the success of Mr. Edsel’s acclaimed bestseller, “Saving Italy: The Race to Save a Nation’s Treasure from the Nazi.” In 2014, Ms. Bottinelli accepted a full time research position with the Monuments Men Foundation for the Preservation of Art, in Dallas, Texas. By 2017, she had advanced to senior leadership positions and in December 2019, she was appointed as the Foundation’s new President, succeeding its founder, Mr. Edsel . During her tenure at the Foundation, Ms. Bottinelli has overseen numerous restitutions of cultural objects to individuals and museums in Europe. She has also served as a consultant for “Hunting Nazi Treasure,” an eight-part investigative documentary that continues to air on Discovery’s American Heroes Channel, History Channel- Canada, and Canale Focus in Italy, with additional future broadcasts planned internationally. Today Ms. Bottinelli is considered an expert on the subject of art looting and recovery during World War II. She regularly is a point of contact for provenance attorneys seeking expert opinions on art restitution cases involving Italy. Ms. Bottinelli has close ties with the art restitution unit of the Italian Carabinieri, who have been steadfast supporters of the Monuments Men Foundation and its mission. Ms. Bottinelli is currently based in Dallas with her husband and two little boys, but she divides her time between the U.S. and Italy. Connect with Anna on 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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, 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.
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.
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
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.
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, 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, 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 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 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.
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!
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.
Principal & CMO, 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.
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.