Military transitions can be very difficult. There are so many unknowns, and it takes time. But if mentors are willing to educate those that come after them, to share what they have learned, and to provide advice, then it doesn’t have to be as hard.
In this interview, Mary Kate Soliva welcomes Matt Quick, a fifth-generation service member and Veteran of the both the Marine Corps. And Army.
Matt speaks with Mary Kate about:
• Growing a thick skin as a kid growing up on an apple farm in New York
• What it was like getting an opportunity to work his dream job at the Pentagon
• How Veterans can solidify their networking and project management skills
Welcome to veteran voices, a podcast that dedicated to giving a voice to those that have served in the United States, armed forces on this series, jointly presented by supply chain now, and vets to industry. We sit down with a wide variety of veterans and veteran advocates to gain their insights, perspective, and stories from serving. We talk with many individuals about their challenging transition from active duty to the private sector, and we discuss some of the most vital issues facing veterans today. Join us for this episode of veteran voices.
Mary Kate Soliva (00:48):
Hello everyone. Mary Kate Soliva here with you on veteran voices. Thanks for joining us today. As we’ve got a wonderful conversation teed up with a veteran, pretty badass veteran and advocate, stay tuned for a great discussion. I’m gonna just do a quick programming note before we get started. This program is part of the supply chain. Now program family of programming and today’s show is conducted in partnership with our friends at bets industry. Shout out to Brian Aton and learn more about this powerful nonprofit that is serving so many firstname.lastname@example.org, an initiative that is near and dear to my heart, the Guam human rights initiative. You can find them on LinkedIn and at the university of Guam under the regional center for public policy. So without further ado, I have been waiting a while to get this guy on this podcast. So let’s introduce our guests today. Our guests today works actually, you know, we’re, uh, tag teaming buddies. I don’t know what I do without him, but the project management Institute, he’s also a Marine wants a Marine, always a Marine and an army veteran. So let’s welcome in Matt Quick, the famous veteran,
Matt Quick (02:08):
I tell you, I really want some intro music. You know, I was watching restaurant weekend and Steve Austin, the glass breaks, I was like, that’s what I want my intro music to be one day, one day.
Mary Kate Soliva (02:18):
I know like the Quentin Tarantino, whether you got the fire.
Matt Quick (02:22):
Yeah. So it’s
Mary Kate Soliva (02:23):
Cools going up in there. Oh my goodness. That’s just too funny. I, I really am. Thank you so much for joining us today. I know you’re doing a million different things, volunteering as well as with what we’re doing at PMI. And so just really wanted to pump this up cuz I know, you know what rank got out at. So I know that in your leadership position, you are all about motivating young, young service members. So you have a motivational quote that you could start us off with today.
Matt Quick (02:56):
I actually have two, if you don’t mind. No. And then one is very old from Ben Franklin. And what that is is he says, tell me, and I forgot, teach me. And I remember involve me. And I learn that is to me pretty powerful because if you’re in the weeds, if you’re, if you’re have people involved, that’s how they learn the most. My second one, it’s more current. That’s more for Richard Branson, train people well enough so they can leave, but treat ’em well enough. So they don’t want to.
Mary Kate Soliva (03:29):
I love that. I love that. And where did you end up picking those quotes up? Was was that something that,
Matt Quick (03:35):
So they were years. They were years ago. I think it was a book I read or something like that. But of course Richard Branson was very, is very popular quote, but I use them in a job I used to have as director of people and culture, which was those coachs were powerful back then.
Mary Kate Soliva (03:50):
I was thinking you were gonna end up quoting some famous general and leading off in cadence and start doing pushups.
Matt Quick (03:56):
If you want me to, I can do six pushups.
Mary Kate Soliva (03:59):
We gonna keep on going. Cause I don’t wanna have to do them with you. So we’re gonna, so I really uh, wanna take this opportunity to get to know you. I know you have a huge LinkedIn presence, but I’m sure listeners say we really curious about where it all began for Matt quick. So if you could take us, I don’t wanna say way, way back, but you know how back we’re going here, but
Matt Quick (04:21):
It’s way back.
Mary Kate Soliva (04:22):
Is it way back <laugh> but where’d you grow up? Yeah.
Matt Quick (04:26):
So I’m a, I’m an eighties kid basically. So I grew up in a small town called Rosendale New York in Highland land, New York. That’s upstate New York for the New York city or downstate from your upstate. So it’s right. It’s like an city, great area. Lot of love in the family. Middle class, maybe lower middle class, maybe port times. Uh, I remember growing up and having, we had a, we had a, we had a, uh, a supermarket next to our house. So I would, my parents would gimme some money to go get some like, uh, lettuce or bread. And I, they gave some money. It was, it was colorful money. I’m like, this is it’s like monopoly money. It’s pretty cool. I didn’t realize back then it was food stamps. No, but it was cool though. So now I own the same. I own the food stamps that I used to buy bread and, and, and lettuce with. I own it. Cause I got off from eBay one day.
Mary Kate Soliva (05:19):
<laugh> you got it off eBay <laugh> yep. Cool. There you go. Plug, plug eBay in there. Wow. Well, when, where did you end up growing up? Just in one place or did you move around a lot as a kid?
Matt Quick (05:31):
I was not a military kid. So I grew up in the same county, my whole life. We had three different houses and my house burned down when I was like 12 years old too. So I had to deal with that, but that was a whole different story. Uh, you know, kids can be mean, but house burns down and you have, uh, people take up donations and you go back to school and people ask for their clothes back. That’s hard to deal with. But you know, you get thick skin as a kid though.
Mary Kate Soliva (05:58):
Yeah. Especially at, at 12 years old. And uh, did you end up having like all your family in one place too? Like your extended family too?
Matt Quick (06:06):
We all, so my, my, my mom’s side was apple farmers. They own a lot of apple farms in New York. So that was more, it was awesome. I would go to my grandma’s house. We would just go to the apple farm right across the street, eat a apple, one bite, throw it away, one bite, throw it away. So waste. But where kids though <laugh> then my dad’s side of family was more like, you know, lower class, but you know, well, hard workers just didn’t didn’t make any money. So there was a mix. She was, it was a good to have both sides or live in the middle and uh, loved going. I loved going my grandma’s house every weekend and get to McDonald’s. That was a treat.
Mary Kate Soliva (06:46):
Oh, is this the same grandma that you found money in a card recently?
Matt Quick (06:50):
Yes. And I had the card we over there, so she gave me the card. It was like, I was like, oh six or oh seven. I just found it last week or week a week ago. So funny. She passed away in 2015. Uh, she was 84 years old, but uh, these things happened, but I found that I’m like, oh, you got made the last word is yours, grandma
Mary Kate Soliva (07:13):
<laugh> cause hiding right underneath the card. Right?
Matt Quick (07:16):
Mary Kate Soliva (07:17):
Yeah. I love that. You know, cause I just really have that kind of closeness with my grandmother too. But even the apple orchard that really takes me back to some of my childhood memories. Uh, one of my dearest friends had, she, her family is on an apple orchard as well. And we had one down the road and we used to just play and just stay out there all night. It’s like never mind sleeping indoors. We just wanna sleep out in the orchard. Right. That was under the stars. <laugh> the, any apples? Yeah. Apple butter. I mean, so many things you could do with an apple, but yeah. What are some, some of those anecdotes that you have from, from your childhood? Do you have any sort of lessons learned that you have from that time?
Matt Quick (07:58):
I, I guess resiliency is one of the big things. You know, my house burning down. That was a, a tough thing. Losing all my toys. I was a big Russian fan grow up. So we had these, these Hulk Hogan and, and Rick flair figures and big John stud. And they were just one glob of mess. After the fire. I had these, these sports cards, Michael Jordan, 86 FLIR cards pinned on my wall, like a dummy, but they were all gone now, you know, but resilience as a kid. But one of the things like sports, I was big into sports. I wasn’t very good. I was just big into sports. And I think it was my senior year or my junior year. I was playing basketball at a small, uh, a small school. And we traveled with one game and I had a bad attitude. I really did. I thought I was God’s gift to sports, but I was not that good. So I would try to maybe hurt people during the game for no reason at all. I had a bad attitude. So this is one of the reasons Mary Kay. I joined the Marine Corps. My dad was a Marine. My brother was a Marine. I needed the Marine Corps more than it needed me.
Mary Kate Soliva (09:08):
Wow. And I didn’t know that you had, you were a generational Marine. So you said, you said your dad was too, but you didn’t grow up in, in like the military lifestyle though. Was he out before you, as you were born,
Matt Quick (09:20):
He spent about a year in the military. It wasn’t for him. Mm-hmm <affirmative> he had a bad family life back, uh, in New York. So he had to deal with deal with things while you’re away from your family. There, they pull your strength so hard. So he had to get out at a hardship, so right. But we still respected his service. My brother joined and I joined mm-hmm
Mary Kate Soliva (09:40):
<affirmative> that’s incredible. Yeah. I didn’t, I didn’t know that. Now I know that your kids did not join, but you said you haven’t lost hope yet. Right?
Matt Quick (09:49):
So I haven’t learned, so I’m a, I’m a fifth generation service member. Uh, and I was, I was proud of that. My grandma actually served in the army women Corps back in world Wari. Oh, I love that. My grandad served in the Ellucian islands in Alaska, during world war II as a, one of those candid people lost his hearing. But, but I was hoping my kids were doing just one of them <laugh> but one, one just graduated college. So I’m, I’m talking about the space force right now. Just do something, man. Come on, make me proud. <laugh>
Mary Kate Soliva (10:25):
Even the one, one and done right? One contract.
Matt Quick (10:28):
Mary Kate Soliva (10:28):
Yeah. So, I mean, let’s, let’s talk about your, your time in the Marine Corps. Cause I know I mentioned earlier in the episode that you also an army veteran, but I know there’s a, a transition story there. Even from going from some people might not even call it green to green, right. Going from Marine Corps to army. But tell us about that. What, what led you to join besides the, the family legacy?
Matt Quick (10:48):
So funny story. So I spent four years in the Marine Corps. I had a great time, but I was on a ship. And then when you’re on a ship, you don’t back then there was no internet. So I had to go over to another ship to get an email. So what happened was I was on a ship. It was like September and the Marine Corps cuts off their, their what’s called boat spaces to reenlist. And I missed out on, on my boat space, my opportunity to reenlist because I was on ship. I didn’t hear about it. I would’ve reenlisted immediately. So I talked to my career planner. He was a big six foot, four EEO D guy, right? Just big guy. We’re all scared of him that plays in the store here shortly. So I, I lost my opportunity. So he comes to us. He goes, Hey, uh, you can’t reenlist unless you go infantry.
Matt Quick (11:37):
Oh three 11. I’m like, oh hell no. I’m I’m admin. These horns do not get the infantry to the life. Not at all. Right. But once a Marine was a Marine. So I took a, um, a helicopter from one chip to the other and emailed the command, the Marine Corps and laid out why I should reenlist. I get back the next day, that six foot, four EOD guys in my face. What are you doing? Are you outta your mind? I’m like, can I reenlist? Yes. As infantry. I’m like, I’m good, man. <laugh> so when I got back off shift, it was like January of next year, I got back off shift and I went to the army recruiter, signed some contracts. And as I was getting outta the, uh, the Marine Corps, I was enlisting in the army. It was, it was a smooth transition.
Mary Kate Soliva (12:27):
Now, see, you had mentioned the space force. I know there wasn’t space force back then, but why the army? I mean, you’re talking about like these hands <laugh> I still consider like army a little rough and ready compared to some of the other branches.
Matt Quick (12:41):
So why don’t you leave the Marine Corps and you do all the Marine Corps training, the Marine Corps bootcamp, right? The field training. The army is the of life. So I wanted the easier life for myself and my family. So I definitely knew it was the easier life and the air force. Wasn’t taking a Marine Marine guy. So I was like, uh, I better go to the army. <laugh>
Mary Kate Soliva (13:00):
I know. I keep jokingly say that. We take everybody over here.
Matt Quick (13:04):
It’s a big force.
Mary Kate Soliva (13:05):
Nine toes. You don’t need all 10. What gonna come
Matt Quick (13:07):
For? Yeah, we’re good.
Mary Kate Soliva (13:09):
<laugh> so, yeah, I just, so we, we got your branches, but where, where did you get to go? Did you get to go anywhere exciting?
Matt Quick (13:16):
So in the Marine Corps, you know, we did training. I spent, I spent 45 days in Italy, in the Marine Corps, in the field, in the field training. I’m like, what? So that was, that was a time that, that Tupac died. I remember getting started magazine and getting that, but listen, we had a Mediterranean float, a med float. Oh, oh wow. And we, we went around and I’ve been to Greece. I’ve been to Spain, rode to Spain. We, we went to a lot of different places, but all my years of service, I never was stationed overseas, never 25 years of service. I spent probably 22 or 23 years on the east coast. I have no idea why
Mary Kate Soliva (13:59):
The army that’s, that was like, people join the service to see the world. And then they end up, you know, like my job in the army, those guys get stuck down at, in North Carolina. You wouldn’t call it getting stuck.
Matt Quick (14:14):
We deployed, I went Tovo yeah. I went to Iraq, you know, I went, I, you know, we, we deployed, but never station overseas though. I was pretty surprised and shocked the whole time.
Mary Kate Soliva (14:23):
Oh my goodness. Well, it’s like, I, I actually really appreciate, I love the travel aspect of it. And I always, it always blew my mind that service members would just stay on base, play video games and never leave base. They’d never leave camp or wherever they’re at to go out and explore, go where the locals go. You know? It’s like, why go there and then go to the McDonald’s.
Matt Quick (14:45):
So, cause it’s good. It’s it’s good for it’s good.
Mary Kate Soliva (14:47):
I don’t believe McDonald’s is different. They have the food that’s to that area, you
Matt Quick (14:52):
Know, that’s right.
Mary Kate Soliva (14:53):
So I was just like, no, no, no, you gotta go where the locals go. So it’s just, I, I love that aspect of the military and the fact that we have folks that we serve with that are from different areas. So we always have a couch to Beaumont and you know, somewhere to stay. But with you just mentioned about your Vasic experience. So I’m really curious as to maybe one or two folks that took you under their wing, like earlier on in your career. And then maybe somebody, you know, shout out for somebody later on in your career.
Matt Quick (15:26):
So early in my career I had, and this is, this is while I was in the army. So I was in the army. This was year two in the army. I was assigned to the Pentagon. I was assigned to the, the chief of staff of the Army’s office generation. SECI I’m like, oh my goodness, I can’t believe this. I’m going. I’m going to my dream job. As a new Yorker, I would visit Washington DC every other year, Jersey shore. The other of the years I would visit every other year. And I would dream of being in a Pentagon one day. I didn’t wanna join military. I wanna work in the Pentagon work
Mary Kate Soliva (15:59):
In the Pentagon. Wow.
Matt Quick (16:00):
So, so when I got an opportunity, I’m like, this is so cool. So he had a staff of like nine people and I was one of those. My first mentor came from that organization. His name was chief Warren or five. Dan Logan look him up. This guy is, is phenomenal when it comes to the army. And this is the reason why we connected. So, so well, because he was an older guy. I admit I’m like, this guy wants to mentor me because he was a Marine. That’s why. So he took me under his way. He said, listen, you’re a Marine, I’m a Marine. I’m an army guy. Now we’re both army. But he wanted to, to make me the next him. So he encouraged me to go to warm school. Cause I always, I was 42 alpha for, I was a 71 Lima back then, which was an executive administrative assistant. Again, these hands you
Mary Kate Soliva (16:51):
Dating yourself. <laugh>
Matt Quick (16:52):
Yeah, I, I am, I don’t care. So I was a 71 Lima and as they were merging those Moss, he told me, he goes, listen, you can go to one school. You can do a lot of different things. What do you want to do? One day I was walking on a Pentagon and I saw this, this badge said, I didn’t know what it was. It was a career counselor, badge. I’m like chief. I think I wanna be a career counselor. He goes, let’s make it happen. So as Deon sec was leaving his office, people were getting assignments to Hawaii assignments and MEPS. I wanna be a career counselor. So they signed a paperwork off. I didn’t do like retention, NCO duty, and people hated me for that. But I got into school and then I made a name for myself by creating the army reenlistment website, uh, creating an armor app. I would make a name for myself all, all because chief form five, Dan Logan inspired me to do something more than just what I was doing right now. I loved it.
Mary Kate Soliva (17:53):
Well, that’s incredible. I didn’t know that that was like your foundational story for the app development too. Right? Of just creating like all stuff, like career related kind
Matt Quick (18:02):
Of thing. I’m a big old nerd. Mary Kay. I I’ve always people say I wanna take care of people. I say how, because I’ve done it my whole career. How do you do it? You gotta find your niche, but the army didn’t have a retention website. I’m like, this is 2004. Watch the website. Well, we don’t wanna invest money. Well, I’ll built it myself now. My first trial.
Mary Kate Soliva (18:23):
Yeah. I’d like to see what that looked like.
Matt Quick (18:27):
If you go back, if you go to a website called the way back machine, you can go to any website and go back and they’ll tell you what it was like. It was garbage. Oh, I didn’t know that it was my creation though. <laugh>
Mary Kate Soliva (18:40):
I was like for our viewers that can’t see your face. He just like perked up, puffed his chest out. He was very proud of it. Yeah. Heck yeah. So that’s hilarious. Uh, well, I, I really love that aspect because now I’m starting to piece together. All the things about that launched you, cuz you still do that. Now
Matt Quick (18:59):
A hundred percent. I still lead. I still lead the team, our Marine ment team. I’ve got three or four volunteers now do a wonderful job. I’m more hands off. I’m more of the face if you call it that. Right. But I give guidance and mentorship and they, they do all the work.
Mary Kate Soliva (19:14):
Well, that, that sounds like a smart thinking, working smarter and harder. But I right. I really, for again, for, because of the amount of time that you spent in uniform on active duty, both branches, do you have anybody else that, that sticks out sort of like later in your career, uh, that was there there’s somebody or was it more so you giving out all that advice?
Matt Quick (19:36):
No, no, no, listen, we don’t do this by ourselves. Mary Kay. So
Mary Kate Soliva (19:39):
A hundred percent.
Matt Quick (19:41):
So when I was a career counselor, I was, I was told to apply to be an instructor of the schoolhouse, which is a great job. So I applied to be an instructor of the schoolhouse. The schoolhouse says, Hey, Hey, Sergeant quick, you may wanna also consider working at what’s called forces, command retention, operations in Atlanta, Georgia. I’m like, that’s a, that’s a high level job. I’m not very smart. They just thought I was smart because they think I was doing so I applied for both jobs at the urging of my leadership and I got both jobs. I’m like now I gotta pick. So training the future of our field was cool, but the operations job, I can do a lot of operations and train too. So I chose to go to force com retention and I met Sergeant major, Marty Boyd, gray there. So she is phenomenal.
Matt Quick (20:37):
She was the first female to be the two wide D retention star major, the first female to be four Bennings star major for retention. So she was like, she’s actually in the hall of fame right now for recruiting retention. So she was very inspirational in my career. She propelled me to next’s career. She was very to fitness though. We worked out every day and we ate right too one day on my office. And I didn’t think she was there because we got there early. So I’m there snacking on like these donuts, these mini donuts, she come in there, she goes, what are you doing? I’m like, whoa, I didn’t think you’re here. She snatched this outta my mouth and throw it in the trash. She goes, that’s not who you are.
Mary Kate Soliva (21:24):
Oh my goodness. I’d like to
Matt Quick (21:27):
Meet her fast forward, fast forward, um, like eight years. And I was in her position. Uhhuh
Mary Kate Soliva (21:33):
I, and you still worked out every day?
Matt Quick (21:35):
No, not really eight donors mostly, but I created a retention leadership award and named it after her. And it incredible still there today.
Mary Kate Soliva (21:45):
That’s incredible. Did you, you created all the criteria to earn it as well.
Matt Quick (21:49):
Well, me and my, my operations team, Sonny Luga and, and William Shaer. We created this, the metrics, all this by named, after her, it’s called the retention excellence award in leadership. The real award that’s right. I can do acronyms <laugh>
Mary Kate Soliva (22:10):
Okay. Now this is really all piecing together. I feel like to avoid going down rabbit holes of private jokes here, but it was like, this makes total sense. Now you are like the you’re
Matt Quick (22:20):
Mary Kate Soliva (22:21):
Thank you. Thank you. Yeah. So I mean, I absolutely you’re absolutely right. You can’t do this alone and you went through different transitions throughout your military career, which I think is important to highlight as well. And along the way you had folks that they, they built immediate rapport with you based on just, and that’s what I love is cuz of how diverse we are. We all come from different walks of life, different parts of the country around the world. And, and then we bring something different to the team. But when we have that one thing, like, again, Marines, you just gotta be a Marine and they all flock together
Mary Kate Soliva (22:56):
Simplify. So sometimes I feel like I, I can’t even, I don’t even have the right to say that, but I see the, the S slash app and I’m like, oh, can’t I can’t use that. But yeah, I love that aspect. It just, we go through those transitions. We can’t do it alone. We need to seek out either seek out that mentorship or, you know, be that good mentor that, that great leader and turn around, lean back and, and pull up the one’s coming behind you. So I, I love active learning. I feel like I’m an active learner, pride myself on that and continuously learning from probably dozens of mentors that I still have now. Uh, but I really want to talk about your transition cuz you went through multiple transitions throughout your career, but you also went through the big one, retired. Yep. And you’re still not like fully retired. Obviously. You still had to find a way to enter that into the private sector. So walk us through a little bit about what that looked like for you.
Matt Quick (23:54):
So military transition can be easy or can be hard mm-hmm <affirmative> we choose by how we plan for it. Here’s mine. So when I graduated this art major academy in 2014, I, well actually in the academy I started networking and I started paying down debt because I knew the end was near whether it was five years, 10 years, the end was near, I can’t stay forever. So I graduated academy and went to Fort drum, climbing the glory in New York. And I started paying down all my debt. We had a conversation, my wife and I about how we can do this. So we, we did that. So when it comes to transition, I woke up one day. So I, I transitioned what three years at a four drum. I was at, uh, force conversion working at, at the, probably the second highest level in the army.
Matt Quick (24:44):
When it comes to retention the other one’s in a Pentagon. I didn’t want the job I get down here, give him great. Three years. One day I woke up and now my wife’s mom passed away while we were in a Fort drum, her dad was dying. Now while I was at Fort brag and force calm, my nephew was dying. Two hours away from me. I said woke up one day. I’m like, Hey Jen, I think I’m done. What I plan on doing 30 years. I’m I’m at 24 and a half years now. I said, I’m done. I can’t give a hundred percent anymore. I’m I’m burnt out. And I’ve never said it before now I’m burnt out. So I went to my leadership, which is the, now the SMA right now GSON I went to him and said, listen, I’m, I’m done retiring. He gave me a great spiel on finances, all this stuff that I was doing, but he gave me a better op better opportunities. And I, he goes, how, how much time do you need? I’m like, I need two months. I’m done. I’m I’m I’m walking away. So I didn’t take my year. I was done with me
Mary Kate Soliva (25:44):
Two months. For two years,
Matt Quick (25:46):
Five months, I was out the, I was outta the military. I was done. And this is where my second mentor comes in. He was my command start major in the, I commands aren’t major in the old guard. Jeff Stitzel. I feared him there because listen, I wasn’t on his level. But now I reached out to him because he was transitioned. He had a, a good transition. I said, Hey, what do I do? I’ve got two months. He goes, do X, Y, and Z. Don’t think about it. Just do it. I come back next debt. Next week. He goes, here’s three more things. Do these things. Now come back. That’s what it was. It was more of me reacting to what he was telling me because I trusted him. That’s what it was. So I paid down debt. I’ve been networking for years. He, he got me in Mike Quinn’s master of LinkedIn class. I learned LinkedIn in a matter of two months. And then I, I joined Mike Quinn building military. But these things all come from networking and having mentors that we trust. Yes. They’re not just relations. We build off the, off the cuff. They’re built over years. So that for me, transit was easy for one reason only I didn’t have debt. That was big for me.
Mary Kate Soliva (27:05):
Well, and, and you must have mentioned, uh, Jen, which you know, how many years has it been? I know you celebrated
Matt Quick (27:13):
Mary Kate Soliva (27:13):
Now, 25 years. I know. That’s why I want you to say it out loud because I, it is possible. I think people think like being in the military, that we all end up in divorce or whatnot, but that you just a testimony. We
Matt Quick (27:24):
Fell in love of the trial. I, I dunno how she does it. Yeah.
Mary Kate Soliva (27:28):
And she, and goodness. And she’s still like so young and good and y’all are out there doing five Ks and golf cart competitions,
Matt Quick (27:37):
Half marathons now. Crazy half
Mary Kate Soliva (27:39):
Marathons. Yeah. Y’all are crushing it. That’s why like, say hashtag power couple <laugh> the quick, the quick team. But think I really appreciate you sharing that aspect of your transition because not only is it difficult for those who for, at any point, whether you’ve done one contract you’re in three or four years or whatnot, or whether you did a whole entire career 20, 30 years. But I actually found that in my opinion, I think it’s the ones that have been in longer that are having the harder time that need to start earlier the two year mark. If, if not, like you said, you were trying to prepare that at least to pay off that debt, knowing that it was coming, it was inedible that you were gonna step out a uniform at some point, but folks aren’t thinking like that. I talk to so many service members and, and how many veterans you and I talk to every week who are like, I’m getting out and it’s next month <laugh>
Matt Quick (28:28):
With, I haven’t
Mary Kate Soliva (28:29):
Haven’t started anything with no plan. No, no. They don’t even know what they want to do, what industry they wanna work for. I’m like name your dream company. Some of them can’t even do that. So we just understand that it takes time and part, a big part of that is not only in paying off your debt and getting your, your family situated financially, but developing the rapport because even for asking for letters of recommendation or, you know, just being able to honestly say that I had been supporting this organization volunteering, or I knew so and so for two years was something, what meant something they were ready to reach out and put their name out there for me to get a job. And I know we can give, uh, Corey Burton a shout out for, for taking up for finding us off the, the corner
Matt Quick (29:18):
<laugh> she is phenomenal. And she won. She’s a recruiter that doesn’t take no for an answer.
Mary Kate Soliva (29:22):
Yeah. One recruiter that she just really understands where to, to place people, almost like Harry Potter’s magical sorting hat. That’s true. Harry Potter fans out there don’t I was like, probably not saying it right. But you know, she just really knows where to, how to properly place people and what will work for them. And, and that’s folks that you want in your circle, in your network to build rapport with and to get to know you. So I know again, you’re doing so many different things. When, when you got burnt out, was there that sense of what’s my purpose gonna be? What, what am I gonna do now? How did you handle that?
Matt Quick (29:59):
So when I was going through a military transition, I saw how difficult it could be for many people. This is why I chose to stay in this, in this space to educate, to, to share my experiences and to talk to more people, get their experiences, learn from them and share ’em as well. I didn’t get my first paying job until I was outta the military for 10 months. I didn’t need to work cause I was good financially, right. That I never had the pressure to work. So we built a, a small company that’s pretty big now higher military to, to hopefully educate those that come after us because now we are the mentors and I’m not sure how long my shelf life is for this career transition space. But that’s why I moved from just from just military transition to career transition. Because now I I’ve got a lot of experience. I’ve been laid off twice in the past two years now, C you know, underperforming, um, jobs when it comes to, uh, getting revenue. There’s, I’ve learned a lot. So I can use that experience to better educate and push people in the right directions that they want to go to. So career coach is what I am, so I can talk about resumes. I can talk about X, Y, and Z. And, and this is now my passion or my Y or more specifically my who, Mary Kay.
Mary Kate Soliva (31:23):
Oh, your who? That’s an interesting ad there. So
Matt Quick (31:28):
Who is those that those people in, in military transition and career transition now,
Mary Kate Soliva (31:34):
And I love that because I know, I know it’s not for, I know it’s not for everyone. And some folks will say that, you know, why enter the transition space to help service members after the fact, if you are still going through your transition. But I really am of the belief. I feel like a quarter, my mentors were folks that were still transitioning, but it was nice to know that, that they were going through it with me and that my struggles or my bad days, that I could call them up. And they could talk to me about how they got through their bad day and connect me with folks in their network. Because I, as those, even those who start last minute, they still end up starting with one person, one person in their network. And that person introduces ’em to someone else. And I can’t tell you how many introductory emails I have written. I even wrote one earlier today, uh, just connecting two other veterans who I felt like needed to get to know each other based on what they’re working on. So that’s what it’s all about. And I love that we’re both in, in this space and I love that you continue giving back. And I really wanna take this time to, to talk about some of the nonprofit work that you’re doing. I need to do some in the transition space, but I know you even started, uh, an organization. I’d love to hear more about that.
Matt Quick (32:49):
So before that, the reason, one, the reason why I give back to military transitions, we don’t charge money. I don’t get paid for this, you know, right. The mil, the military pays me well, not to work for the rest of my life. I feel that I can give back a little bit of my time to those people, the organization that’s given me my family so much. That’s why give back. So Mary Kay, you and I met at one of my now nonprofits that I worked with, which was suiting warriors. That one was, we gave suits away to people in, in military transition and not just mil, not just, not just men, but females as well. Cause everyone needs a good suit to feel powerful. You know, feel good, look good. You do do good. So that’s, that’s since, uh, disbanded because we could, could upkeep it.
Matt Quick (33:42):
But we, I did find well with my sister-in-law. We founded Dylan quick foundation, and this was my nephew was dying of cancer. Well, he spent five years battling. So when, when he was in his last day or so my a sister-in-law had a conversation with my brother would, would he mind if we created a foundation in his honor to Memor to, to give back to, to make sure his name isn’t forgotten. So we created that and that’s been three and a half years now that we run that do, uh, softball tournaments. We’re trying to do a kickball tournament. An award from school from his school is handed out every year in his name. We give scholarships away. And this is a small, this is a small, but powerful nonprofit is based out of Newburn, North Carolina on the east coast. And it’s, it’s doing great work. It’s a hard one talk about because it’s my brother’s son that passed away, but my sister-in-law needed this to get through what she was going through the time. So I’m glad we started this thing. And we, we, we maintain it today.
Mary Kate Soliva (34:50):
I love that. And, and thank you so much for sharing that and definitely wanna keep Dylan’s name alive and going. And I think what a wonderful way to keep his memory and legacy alive and what I really captured from that too, not only we get your sister through that time and your family, but the community support that you got as well. Like you, you said
Matt Quick (35:11):
Mary Kate Soliva (35:12):
Got involved and you have softball tournament. So I just love the idea that the community really gathered around to support your family.
Matt Quick (35:19):
Newburn high school now gives out annual award called the spirit of the spirit of the bear, which the Newburn bears what they are. Um, and it’s now the Dylan quick spirit of the bear award. So every year, and it, this isn’t the top academic person. This is the, this is the person with the best character. There’s many, there’s so many matches to go into this, but you don’t have to be smart or, or be the best in sports. You can get in the war two. And we love that.
Mary Kate Soliva (35:46):
Oh, I really, I really, really love that a lot. And so that’s just something again with when you have the community, I think was just like the common theme throughout what you’re saying is just really having support and surrounding yourself with the right people that are gonna have your back during the good times and the bad times.
Matt Quick (36:04):
Oh, and one thing about the foundation, Mary Kay. I, I forgot about this. Yeah,
Mary Kate Soliva (36:08):
Can’t forget that.
Matt Quick (36:10):
So ever. So he passed away in Greenville, North Carolina, the children’s hospital. So every year now, for the past 12, since 2019, we have donations set up around Newburn for toys. So there’s like 18 toy drops that it’s, it’s, it doesn’t rival the Marine Corps toys for tots at all. This is a very small one, but we have, we deliver a U-Haul full of toys to the children’s hospital the week before Christmas, because he was given so much to the hospital. It’s our way of giving back. So I, I wear like a, um, a Christmas sport coat. I have one for my brother now. So we do that. So we’re kind of like, Santa’s elves delivering toys there before Christmas. So that is a big hit. Gosh. And that’s one of the things that we love giving back with
Mary Kate Soliva (37:01):
How wonderful is that? And I really love that. It’s the family too. So you got the community, but you also have, have your family, uh, doing, getting involved as well. And I’m trying to picture you, you throw on the beard, have you tried growing at your beard? You know, you can, now
Matt Quick (37:17):
I tried for a month. I hated it. My wife hated it. It looks dumb. So I’m not gonna do it again. <laugh>
Mary Kate Soliva (37:23):
Like, you still rocking the, the military clean cut here. But I feel like, again, it’s like once the Marine always a Marine that’s right. So as far as advice goes that you have for folks that maybe sort of stuck in a rut, and they’re trying to figure out how to find their purpose, get going, get motivated, get involved.
Matt Quick (37:44):
So yeah, I, I talk to people every day and everyone, everyone seems to want to shoot for the Amazons, the Walmart, the Microsoft, the apples, the Teslas. Now sometimes you have to, I’m not saying lower yourself. I’m saying shoot for a small or medium size company. Because these companies for, for me, my first job outta the military was 10 months after retired. I, my mentor and I built this job for me, you know, small and medium companies can create jobs for you if they see the value. So they saw my value. They hire me to a director of people and culture to oversee their recruiting, to oversee their training development. To, to look at that, I was let go at six months because of COVID. I get that. But right, the, the whole world changed, but shoe for a small company, that’s looking to grow or a medium company looking to grow.
Matt Quick (38:41):
The, the chamber of commerce has this information, talk to your mentors. And some people, I had a conversation today that someone that I went to the academy with says, Hey, how can I be a, a motivational speaker? So I, I Googled real quickly, got an indeed article, sent him his way. And now is on the track to be a motivational speaker. Yes, that’s an actual paying job, but you, you gotta put the work into it. But again, paying down your paying off your debt, frees you up from doing, you know, from having to work. You can do whatever you want, but you gotta build your brand. Who is Matt quick? Who is Mary Kay saliva? Who are these people? You’ve gotta figure out what you wanna do, who you wanna do it for and just go after it.
Mary Kate Soliva (39:27):
That’s gosh, almost I lost for words. Cause I was like having a quick reflection, keep my own on my own transition, but coming full circle with that, you, you hit all the points about, oh, I think that we went through during our own transition and sometimes still going through, but that financial freedom is so huge, cuz it is just freedom to be able to have that ability for not sometimes not even just the service member, but your, your spouse for your family, your spouse is to be able to take a step back and actually pursue. Maybe they had a gap in work experience. Now they’re trying to get back in it. Like you said, COVID changed everything, the world change. And so being able to think about what really matters in life and what kind of difference, what kind of impact we wanna make. And a lot of that I find we can start just in our local communities.
Mary Kate Soliva (40:19):
I talked, like you mentioned about what the, the Amazons and the Teslas, like even, just folks that veterans who are wanting to start their own business, they’re, they’re wanting to aim so high, so fast and they grow so big and they lose control. But it’s like, if you can start just even volunteering, just start with your local community, your problem doesn’t have to be trying to, to solve the world problem. But even just like you mentioned, just in your town, getting, getting the local pizza place involved and, and run a softball tournament, you know, it just, those kind of changes can really make a difference.
Matt Quick (40:55):
That’s absolutely right. I didn’t even mention if every day I forgot to talk about upskilling and reskilling through, through training. Yeah.
Mary Kate Soliva (41:06):
I was like, what are you doing now? That’s what she talking about? What are you doing now, Matt?
Matt Quick (41:10):
So what I now is, is I work with project management Institute. And one of the reason why I joined them is because they have a great brand. They have so much opportunities for growth. They have it’s it’s coaching training. It’s it’s great. But I see a lot of our military transitioners that want to be or think they are project managers. So I’m like, well, how can we figure this out? So I, I found this program called kickoff. So I, I tell everybody about it. If you go to pmi.org/kickoff, you can figure out it it’s a free course. You don’t gonna pay anything, but it’s a free course that walks you through the basics of project management. And the cool thing is about it is I can earn two digital badges, Mary Kate for my LinkedIn profile. That’s, that’s three stuff right there. So I mean, it’s, for me, I learn a little differently. I learn in small bite size content. And that’s what this thing does. Small stuff, because I’m not a fast learner, small things, no long lectures. I absorb the lessons and there’s two methodologies, agile and waterfall. The military is more waterfall because like, oh, just one thing, the agile is like, oh, change makers this. So if you’re listening, please go to pmi.org/kickoff, simple stuff, take the course, figure out if you’re a project manager or not.
Mary Kate Soliva (42:40):
Yeah. Free and 45 minutes. You can’t really
Matt Quick (42:44):
Do that over. Listen about an hour, Mary Kate, an
Mary Kate Soliva (42:49):
Hour’s no time limit
Matt Quick (42:50):
Mary Kate Soliva (42:52):
So we start pushing out an hour. But I mean, yeah, one of the big things I know we mentioned Corey, one of the things that really drew me to PMI was just the amount of support that we have, um, within the organization, just the, the advocacy bucket that some of our colleagues say, just being able to give back and being you and I being able to do what we’re doing now, giving back to the military veteran community. I it’s like we speak to numerous spouses all the time to, to their families about how to utilize this. I spoke to, to one that, you know, she, she’s a social worker and she’s trying to pivot, wants to pursue project management. I’ve spoken to people who are entrepreneurs or who have started their own nonprofit organizations, but they’re very interested in just a plethora of different things with upskilling. So again, to go back to that act of learner thing, I don’t, it’s never too late to start. And just being, especially from the military veteran community of the numerous resources that you have available to get things for free or get support and, and funding and time, you know, a lot of it is just taking your time, taking the time to find out what you wanna do and staying committed, sticking with it till you finish, uh, cause
Matt Quick (44:06):
Can really teach you how to do that too. And what what’s good about it is not. And I talked to about careers also, PMI is, is, is hiring a lot too. And people are like, well, I’m not a project energy yet we hire way more non-project managers than, than project managers. Absolutely. So don’t think that, oh, I can’t do that. Hey, just talk to your mentors, figure out what’s out there because we don’t know what we don’t know. Just have the conversations, talk to your mentors, you’ll figure out what is you wanna do and what you can do.
Mary Kate Soliva (44:38):
And there’s nothing to say that you can’t do it while you’re still in uniform before you enter your transition window.
Matt Quick (44:45):
Mary Kate Soliva (44:45):
Matt Quick (44:46):
Mary Kate Soliva (44:47):
Way before nothing to say that you can up skill and learn and, and just try out new things. I, I’m a huge proponent of volunteering your time. Because if you volunteer, you not only learn skills outside of your military job, but you also get an opportunity to network and to learn other skills to grow, get that experience. And so, I mean, and, and of course it’s just for the greater good, I mean, it’s, it’s like a different type of feeling to, to be able to see the impact that you’re making on other people. Uh, and, and just by giving back. So that’s why I love about veteran voices. Matt is how do people get a hold of you if they don’t already know your name already as your LinkedIn celebrity? So listen,
Matt Quick (45:31):
Not very many people know who Matt quick is yet. And that’s fine. I’m fine with that. But listen, I’m primarily on LinkedIn. If you just search LinkedIn, Matt quick. Now, if you Google my name, you may find my link, but you won’t see this face. This Face’s only available for those people on LinkedIn with an account. That’s my setting. Sorry, everybody
Mary Kate Soliva (45:52):
Matt Quick (45:53):
Yeah. <laugh> but get on LinkedIn, just search Matt quick. You’ll see me. Uh, I got a banner for coaching and I, my tagline is I coach people through career transition. You’ll find me easy, reach out, connect or follow doesn’t matter to me, but learn how to use LinkedIn. Learn how to network, build network out. Your network becomes very, very valuable to you.
Mary Kate Soliva (46:17):
Thank you. Fantastic advice. Did I leave anything out? Anything else you wanted to add? Got your plugs in there. I
Matt Quick (46:26):
Feel like it seems
Mary Kate Soliva (46:27):
Out. You’re gonna say I need, I have another story to tell, but for real, all our listeners today reach out connect with Matt quick. Matt will he, he has a plethora of experience and way more stories than we had time to share today. Uh, but reach out to him on behalf of the entire team here at veteran voices, we invite you to find us and subscribe wherever you get your podcast from a big thanks to Brian Ingston and our partners at best industry. And this is Mary Kay saliva wishing you all a fantastic, wonderful day. Wherever you are, get home safe, stay motivated, do good, give forward and be the change that’s needed. And on that note, we’ll see you next time. Thanks everybody.
Matt Quick retired from the U.S. Army in January 2019 after 25 years of active service and settled between Raleigh & Fayetteville, North Carolina. He’s dedicated his professional life assisting people in taking control of their careers. Matt is a Certified Digital Networking & Career Coach, works with Project Management Institute (PMI) as a Military & Veteran focused outreach, and subsequently volunteers his time as Executive Director for Dylan Quick Foundation and Vice President for Veteran & Retirement Programs for the Association of the United States Army (AUSA) – Braxton Bragg Chapter. Connect with Matt on LinkedIn.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Adrian Purtill serves as Business Development Manager at Vector Global Logistics, where he consults with importers and exporters in various industries to match their specific shipping requirements with the most effective supply chain solutions. Vector Global Logistics is an asset-free, multi-modal logistics company that provides exceptional sea freight, air freight, truck, rail, general logistic services and consulting for our clients. Our highly trained and professional team is committed to providing creative and effective solutions, always exceeding our customer’s expectations and fostering long-term relationships. With more than 20+ years of experience in both strategy consulting and logistics, Vector Global Logistics is your best choice to proactively minimize costs while having an exceptional service level.
Joshua is a student from Institute of Technology and Higher Education of Monterrey Campus Guadalajara in Communication and Digital Media. His experience ranges from Plug and Play México, DearDoc, and Nissan México creating unique social media marketing campaigns and graphics design. Joshua helps to amplify the voice of supply chain here at Supply Chain Now by assisting in graphic design, content creation, asset logistics, and more. In his free time he likes to read and write short stories as well as watch movies and television series.
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.
Founder, CEO, & Host
As the founder and CEO of Supply Chain Now, you might say Scott is the voice of supply chain – but he’s too much of a team player to ever claim such a title. One thing’s for sure: he’s a tried and true supply chain expert. With over 15 years of experience in the end-to-end supply chain, Scott’s insights have appeared in major publications including The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and CNN. He has also been named a top industry influencer by Thinkers360, ISCEA and more.
From 2009-2011, Scott was president of APICS Atlanta, and he continues to lead initiatives that support both the local business community and global industry. A United States Air Force Veteran, Scott has also regularly led efforts to give back to his fellow veteran community since his departure from active duty in 2002.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Allison Krache Giddens has been with Win-Tech, a veteran-owned small business and aerospace precision machine shop, for 15 years, recently buying the company from her mentor and Win-Tech’s Founder, Dennis Winslow. She and her business partner, John Hudson now serve as Co-Presidents, leading the 33-year old company through the pandemic.
She holds undergraduate degrees in psychology and criminal justice from the University of Georgia, a Masters in Conflict Management from Kennesaw State University, a Masters in Manufacturing from Georgia Institute of Technology, and a Certificate of Finance from the University of Georgia. She also holds certificates in Google Analytics, event planning, and Cybersecurity Risk Management from Harvard online. Allison founded the Georgia Chapter of Women in Manufacturing and currently serves as Treasurer. She serves on the Chattahoochee Technical College Foundation Board as its Secretary, the liveSAFE Resources Board of Directors as Resource Development Co-Chair, and on the Leadership Cobb Alumni Association Board as Membership Chair and is also a member of Cobb Executive Women. She is on the Board for the Cobb Chamber of Commerce’s Northwest Area Councils. Allison runs The Dave Krache Foundation, a non-profit that helps pay sports fees for local kids in need.
Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain Now and TECHquila Sunrise
When rapid-growth technology companies, venture capital and private equity firms are looking for advisory, they call Greg – a founder, board director, advisor and catalyst of disruptive B2B technology and supply chain. An insightful visionary, Greg guides founders, investors and leadership teams in creating breakthroughs to gain market exposure and momentum – increasing overall company esteem and valuation.
Greg is a founder himself, creating Blue Ridge Solutions, a Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader in cloud-native supply chain applications, and bringing to market Curo, a field service management solution. He has also held leadership roles with Servigistics (PTC) and E3 Corporation (JDA/Blue Yonder). As a principal and host at Supply Chain Now, Greg helps guide the company’s strategic direction, hosts industry leader discussions, community livestreams, and all in addition to executive producing and hosting his original YouTube channel and podcast, TEChquila Sunrise.
Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain is Boring
Talk about world-class: Chris is one of the few professionals in the world to hold CPIM-F, CLTD-F and CSCP-F designations from ASCM/APICS. He’s also the APICS coach – and our resident Supply Chain Doctor. When he’s not hosting programs with Supply Chain Now, he’s sharing supply chain knowledge on the APICS Coach Youtube channel or serving as a professional education instructor for the Georgia Tech Supply Chain & Logistic Institute’s Supply Chain Management (SCM) program and University of Tennessee-Chattanooga Center for Professional Education courses.
Chris earned a BS in Industrial Engineering from Bradley University, an MBA with emphasis in Industrial Psychology from the University of West Florida, and is a Doctoral in Supply Chain Management candidate.
Host of TEKTOK
If there’s one Supply Chain ‘Pro to Know,’ it’s Karin. She’s earned the title for three years and counting – culminating in her designation as the “2020 Supply Chain Pro to Know of the Year.” Karin is also an award-winning digital supply chain, business strategy and technology marketing executive. A sought-after speaker at industry conferences, you will find her quoted in a variety of supply chain publications – and active in forums like ASCM/APICS and CSCMP.
With more than 25 years of supply chain experience, Karin spearheaded strategy and marketing for Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader and IDC MarketScape Leader, Logility. Karin has the heart of a teacher and has helped nearly 1,000 customers transform their businesses and tell their success stories. Today, she is a sought-after advisor helping high-growth B2B technology companies with everything from defining their unique value propositions to introducing new products and capturing customer success. No matter their goals, she makes sure her clients have actionable marketing strategies that help grow global revenue, market share and profitability.
Host of Digital Transformers
Kevin L. Jackson is a globally recognized Thought Leader, Industry Influencer and Founder/Author of the award winning “Cloud Musings” blog. He has also been recognized as a “Top 5G Influencer” (Onalytica 2019, Radar 2020), a “Top 50 Global Digital Transformation Thought Leader” (Thinkers 360 2019) and provides strategic consulting and integrated social media services to AT&T, Intel, Broadcom, Ericsson and other leading companies. Mr. Jackson’s commercial experience includes Vice President J.P. Morgan Chase, Worldwide Sales Executive for IBM and SAIC (Engility) Director Cloud Solutions. He has served on teams that have supported digital transformation projects for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the US Intelligence Community. Kevin’s formal education includes a MS Computer Engineering from Naval Postgraduate School; MA National Security & Strategic Studies from Naval War College; and a BS Aerospace Engineering from the United States Naval Academy. Internationally recognizable firms that have sponsored articles authored by him include Cisco, Microsoft, Citrix and IBM. Books include “Click to Transform” (Leaders Press, 2020), “Architecting Cloud Computing Solutions” (Packt, 2018), and “Practical Cloud Security: A Cross Industry View” (Taylor & Francis, 2016). He also delivers online training through Tulane University, O’Reilly Media, LinkedIn Learning, and Pluralsight. Mr. Jackson retired from the U.S. Navy in 1994, earning specialties in Space Systems Engineering, Carrier Onboard Delivery Logistics and carrier-based Airborne Early Warning and Control. While active, he also served with the National Reconnaissance Office, Operational Support Office, providing tactical support to Navy and Marine Corps forces worldwide.
Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español
Enrique serves as Managing Director at Vector Global Logistics and believes we all have a personal responsibility to change the world. He is hard working, relationship minded and pro-active. Enrique trusts that the key to logistics is having a good and responsible team that truly partners with the clients and does whatever is necessary to see them succeed. He is a proud sponsor of Vector’s unique results-based work environment and before venturing into logistics he worked for the Boston Consulting Group (BCG). During his time at BCG, he worked in different industries such as Telecommunications, Energy, Industrial Goods, Building Materials, and Private Banking. His main focus was always on the operations, sales, and supply chain processes, with case focus on, logistics, growth strategy, and cost reduction. Prior to joining BCG, Enrique worked for Grupo Vitro, a Mexican glass manufacturer, for five years holding different positions from sales and logistics manager to supply chain project leader in charge of five warehouses in Colombia.
He has an MBA from The Wharton School of Business and a BS, in Mechanical Engineer from the Technologico de Monterrey in Mexico. Enrique’s passions are soccer and the ocean, and he also enjoys traveling, getting to know new people, and spending time with his wife and two kids, Emma and Enrique.
Host of Dial P for Procurement
Kelly is the Owner and Managing Director of Buyers Meeting Point and MyPurchasingCenter. She has been in procurement since 2003, starting as a practitioner and then as the Associate Director of Consulting at Emptoris. She has covered procurement news, events, publications, solutions, trends, and relevant economics at Buyers Meeting Point since 2009. Kelly is also the General Manager at Art of Procurement and Business Survey Chair for the ISM-New York Report on Business. Kelly has her MBA from Babson College as well as an MS in Library and Information Science from Simmons College and she has co-authored three books: ‘Supply Market Intelligence for Procurement Professionals’, ‘Procurement at a Crossroads’, and ‘Finance Unleashed’.
Host, Veteran Voices
Mary Kate Soliva is 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.
Jeff Miller is the host of Supply Chain Now’s Supply Chain is the Business. Jeff is a digital business transformation and supply chain advisor with deep expertise in Industry 4.0, ERP, PLM, SCM, IoT, AR and related technologies. Through more than 25 years of industry and consulting experience, he has worked with many of the world’s leading product and service companies to achieve their strategic business and supply chain goals, creating durable business value for organizations at the forefront of technology and business practices. Jeff is the managing director for North America at Transition Technologies PSC, a global solution integrator, and the founder and managing principal of BTV Advisors, a firm that helps companies secure business transformation value from digital supply chain technologies and their breakthrough capabilities.
Chief Marketing Officer
Amanda is a marketing veteran and entrepreneur with over 15 years of experience across a variety of industries and organizations including Von Maur, Anthropologie, AmericasMart Atlanta, and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. In 2016, Amanda founded and grew the Magnolia Marketing Group into a successful digital media firm, and now she develops modern marketing strategies, social campaigns, innovative operational processes, and implements creative content initiatives for Supply Chain Now. But that’s just the beginning of her supply chain impact. Amanda also served as the VP of Information Systems and Webmaster on the Board of Directors for APICS Savannah for several years, and is the face behind the scenes welcoming you to every Supply Chain Now livestream! She was also recently selected as one of the Top 100 Women in Supply Chain by Supply Chain Digest and IBM. When she’s not leading the Supply Chain Now marketing team, you can find Amanda with her and her husband Scott’s three kids, in the kitchen cooking, or reading.
Business Development Manager
Clay is passionate about two things: supply chain and the marketing that goes into it. Recently graduated with a degree in marketing at the University of Georgia, Clay got his start as a journalism major and inaugural member of the Owl’s football team at Kennesaw State University – but quickly saw tremendous opportunity in the Terry College of Business. He’s already putting his education to great use at Supply Chain Now, assisting with everything from sales and brand strategy to media production. Clay has contributed to initiatives such as our leap into video production, the guest blog series, and boosting social media presence, and after nearly two years in Supply Chain Now’s Marketing Department, Clay now heads up partnership and sales initiatives with the help of the rest of the Supply Chain Now sales team.
Trisha is new to the supply chain industry – but not to podcasting. She’s an experienced podcast manager and virtual assistant who also happens to have 20 years of experience as an elementary school teacher. It’s safe to say, she’s passionate about helping people, and she lives out that passion every day with the Supply Chain Now team, contributing to scheduling and podcast production.
Host of Dial P for Procurement
Billy Taylor is a Proven Business Excellence Practitioner and Leadership Guru with over 25 years leading operations for a Fortune 500 company, Goodyear. He is also the CEO of LinkedXL (Excellence), a Business Operating Systems Architecting Firm dedicated to implementing sustainable operating systems that drive sustainable results. Taylor’s achievements in the industry have made him a Next Generational Lean pacesetter with significant contributions.
An American business executive, Taylor has made a name for himself as an innovative and energetic industry professional with an indispensable passion for his craft of operational excellence. His journey started many years ago and has worked with renowned corporations such as The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. (GT) leading multi-site operations. With over 3 decades of service leading North America operations, he is experienced in a deeply rooted process driven approach in customer service, process integrity for sustainability.
A disciple of continuous improvement, Taylor’s love for people inspires commitment to helping others achieve their full potential. He is a dynamic speaker and hosts "The Winning Link," a popular podcast centered on business and leadership excellence with the #1 rated Supply Chain Now Network. As a leadership guru, Taylor has earned several invitations to universities, international conferences, global publications, and the U.S. Army to demonstrate how to achieve and sustain effective results through cultural acceptance and employee ownership. Leveraging the wisdom of his business acumen, strong influence as a speaker and podcaster Taylor is set to release "The Winning Link" book under McGraw Hill publishing in 2022. The book is a how-to manual to help readers understand the management of business interactions while teaching them how to Deine, Align, and Execute Winning in Business.
A servant leader, Taylor, was named by The National Diversity Council as one of the Top 100 Diversity Officers in the country in 2021. He features among Oklahoma's Most Admired CEOs and maintains key leadership roles with the Executive Advisory Board for The Shingo Institute "The Nobel Prize of Operations" and The Association of Manufacturing Excellence (AME); two world-leading organizations for operational excellence, business development, and cultural learning. He is also an Independent Director for the M-D Building Products Board, a proud American manufacturer of quality products since 1920.
Social Media Manager
My name is Chantel King and I am the Social Media Specialist at Supply Chain Now. My job is to make sure our audience is engaged and educated on the abundant amount of information the supply chain industry has to offer.
Social Media and Communications has been my niche ever since I graduated from college at The Academy of Art University in San Francisco. No, I am not a West Coast girl. I was born and raised in New Jersey, but my travel experience goes way beyond the garden state. My true passion is in creating editorial and graphic content that influences others to be great in whatever industry they are in. I’ve done this by working with lifestyle, financial, and editorial companies by providing resources to enhance their businesses.
Another passion of mine is trying new things. Whether it’s food, an activity, or a sport. I would like to say that I am an adventurous Taurus that never shies away from a new quest or challenge.
Lori is currently completing a degree in marketing with an emphasis in digital marketing at the University of Georgia. When she’s not supporting the marketing efforts at Supply Chain Now, you can find her at music festivals – or working toward her dream goal of a fashion career. Lori is involved in many extracurricular activities and appreciates all the learning experiences UGA has brought her.
Sales and Marketing Coordinator
Katherine is a marketing professional and MBA candidate who strives to unite her love of people with a passion for positive experiences. Having a diverse background, which includes nonprofit work with digital marketing and start-ups, she serves as a leader who helps people live their most creative lives by cultivating community, order, collaboration, and respect. With equal parts creativity and analytics, she brings a unique skill set which fosters refining, problem solving, and connecting organizations with their true vision. In her free time, you can usually find her looking for her cup of coffee, playing with her puppy Charlie, and dreaming of her next road trip.
Ben Harris is the Director of Supply Chain Ecosystem Expansion for the Metro Atlanta Chamber. Ben comes to the Metro Atlanta Chamber after serving as Senior Manager, Market Development for Manhattan Associates. There, Ben was responsible for developing Manhattan’s sales pipeline and overall Americas supply chain marketing strategy. Ben oversaw market positioning, messaging and campaign execution to build awareness and drive new pipeline growth. Prior to joining Manhattan, Ben spent four years with the Georgia Department of Economic Development’s Center of Innovation for Logistics where he played a key role in establishing the Center as a go-to industry resource for information, support, partnership building, and investment development. Additionally, he became a key SME for all logistics and supply chain-focused projects. Ben began his career at Page International, Inc. where he drove continuous improvement in complex global supply chain operations for a wide variety of businesses and Fortune 500 companies. An APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP), Ben holds an Executive Master’s degree in Business Administration (EMBA) and bachelor’s degree in International Business (BBA) from the Terry College at the University of Georgia.
Host, The Freight Insider
Prior to joining TeamOne Logistics, Page Siplon served as the Executive Director of the Georgia Center of Innovation for Logistics, the State’s leading consulting resource for fueling logistics industry growth and global competitiveness. For over a decade, he directly assisted hundreds of companies to overcome challenges and capitalize on opportunities related to the movement of freight. During this time, Siplon was also appointed to concurrently serve the State of Georgia as Director of the larger Centers of Innovation Program, in which he provided executive leadership and vision for all six strategic industry-focused Centers. As a frequently requested keynote speaker, Siplon is called upon to address a range of audiences on unique aspects of technology, workforce, and logistics. This often includes topics of global and domestic logistics trends, supply chain visibility, collaboration, and strategic planning. He has also been quoted as an industry expert in publications such as Forbes, Journal of Commerce, Fortune, NPR, Wall Street Journal, Reuters, American Express, DC Velocity, Area Development Magazine, Site Selection Magazine, Inbound Logistics, Modern Material Handling, and is frequently a live special guest on SiriusXM’s Road Dog Radio Show. Siplon is an active industry participant, recognized by DC Velocity Magazine as a “2012 Logistics Rainmaker” which annually identifies the top-ten logistics professionals in the Nation; and named a “Pro to Know” by Supply & Demand Executive Magazine in 2014. Siplon was also selected by Georgia Trend Magazine as one of the “Top 100 Most Influential Georgians” for 2013, 2014, and 2015. He also serves various industry leadership roles at both the State and Federal level. Governor Nathan Deal nominated Siplon to represent Georgia on a National Supply Chain Competitiveness Advisory Committee, where he was appointed to a two-year term by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce and was then appointed to serve as its vice-chairman. At the State level, he was selected by then-Governor Sonny Perdue to serve as lead consultant on the Commission for New Georgia’s Freight and Logistics Task Force. In this effort, Siplon led a Private Sector Advisory Committee with invited executives from a range of private sector stakeholders including UPS, Coca-Cola, The Home Depot, Delta Airlines, Georgia Pacific, CSX, and Norfolk Southern. Siplon honorably served a combined 12 years in the United States Marine Corps and the United States Air Force. During this time, he led the integration of encryption techniques and deployed cryptographic devices for tactically secure voice and data platforms in critical ground-to-air communication systems. This service included support for all branches of the Department of Defense, multiple federal security agencies, and aiding NASA with multiple Space Shuttle launches. Originally from New York, Siplon received both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in electrical and computer engineering with a focus on digital signal processing from the Georgia Institute of Technology. He earned an associate’s degree in advanced electronic systems from the Air Force College and completed multiple military leadership academies in both the Marines and Air Force. Siplon currently lives in Cumming, Georgia (north of Atlanta), with his wife Jan, and two children Thomas (19) and Lily (15).
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Kristi Porter is VP of Sales and Marketing at Vector Global Logistics, a company that is changing the world through supply chain. In her role, she oversees all marketing efforts and supports the sales team in doing what they do best. In addition to this role, she is the Chief Do-Gooder at Signify, which assists nonprofits and social impact companies through copywriting and marketing strategy consulting. She has almost 20 years of professional experience, and loves every opportunity to help people do more good.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Kevin Brown is the Director of Business Development for Vector Global Logistics. He has a dedicated interest in Major Account Management, Enterprise Sales, and Corporate Leadership. He offers 25 years of exceptional experience and superior performance in the sales of Logistics, Supply Chain, and Transportation Management. Kevin is a dynamic, high-impact, sales executive and corporate leader who has consistently exceeded corporate goals. He effectively coordinates multiple resources to solution sell large complex opportunities while focusing on corporate level contacts across the enterprise. His specialties include targeting and securing key accounts by analyzing customer’s current business processes and developing solutions to meet their corporate goals. Connect with Kevin on LinkedIn.
Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol
Sofia Rivas Herrera is a Mexican Industrial Engineer from Tecnologico de Monterrey class 2019. Upon graduation, she earned a scholarship to study MIT’s Graduate Certificate in Logistics and Supply Chain Management and graduated as one of the Top 3 performers of her class in 2020. She also has a multicultural background due to her international academic experiences at Singapore Management University and Kühne Logistics University in Hamburg. Sofia self-identifies as a Supply Chain enthusiast & ambassador sharing her passion for the field in her daily life.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Jose Manuel Irarrazaval es parte del equipo de Vector Global Logistics Chile. José Manuel es un gerente experimentado con experiencia en finanzas corporativas, fusiones y adquisiciones, financiamiento y reestructuración, inversión directa y financiera, tanto en Chile como en el exterior. José Manuel tiene su MBA de la Universidad de Pennsylvania- The Wharton School. Conéctese con Jose Manuel en LinkedIn.
Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol
Demo Perez started his career in 1997 in the industry by chance when a relative asked him for help for two just weeks putting together an operation for FedEx Express at the Colon Free Zone, an area where he was never been but accepted the challenge. Worked in all roles possible from a truck driver to currier to a sales representative, helped the brand introduction, market share growth and recognition in the Colon Free Zone, at the end of 1999 had the chance to meet and have a chat with Fred Smith ( FedEx CEO), joined another company in 2018 who took over the FedEx operations as Operations and sales manager, in 2004 accepted the challenge from his company to leave the FedEx operations and business to take over the operation and business of DHL Express, his major competitor and rival so couldn’t say no, by changing completely its operation model in the Free Zone. In 2005 started his first entrepreneurial journey by quitting his job and joining two friends to start a Freight Forwarding company. After 8 months was recruited back by his company LSP with the General Manager role with the challenge of growing the company and make it fully capable warehousing 3PL. By 2009 joined CSCMP and WERC and started his journey of learning and growing his international network and high-level learning. In 2012 for the first time joined a local association ( the Panama Maritime Chamber) and worked in the country’s first Logistics Strategy plan, joined and lead other associations ending as president of the Panama Logistics Council in 2017. By finishing his professional mission at LSP with a company that was 8 times the size it was when accepted the role as GM with so many jobs generated and several young professionals coached, having great financial results, took the decision to move forward and start his own business from scratch by the end of 2019. with a friend and colleague co-founded IPL Group a company that started as a boutique 3PL and now is gearing up for the post-Covid era by moving to the big leagues.
Host, Supply Chain Now
The founder of Logistics Executive Group, Kim Winter delivers 40 years of executive leadership experience spanning Executive Search & Recruitment, Leadership Development, Executive Coaching, Corporate Advisory, Motivational Speaking, Trade Facilitation and across the Supply Chain, Logistics, 3PL, E-commerce, Life Science, Cold Chain, FMCG, Retail, Maritime, Defence, Aviation, Resources, and Industrial sectors. Operating from the company’s global offices, he is a regular contributor of thought leadership to industry and media, is a professional Master of Ceremonies, and is frequently invited to chair international events.
He is a Board member of over a dozen companies throughout APAC, India, and the Middle East, a New Zealand citizen, he holds formal resident status in Australia and the UAE, and is the Australia & New Zealand representative for the UAE Government-owned Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA), the Middle East’s largest Economic Free Zone.
A triathlete and ex-professional rugby player, Kim is a qualified (IECL Sydney) executive coach and the Founder / Chairman of the successful not for profit humanitarian organization, Oasis Africa (www. oasisafrica.org.au), which has provided freedom from poverty through education to over 8000 mainly orphaned children in East Africa’s slums. Kim holds an MBA and BA from Massey & Victoria Universities (NZ).
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Nick Roemer has had a very diverse and extensive career within design and sales over the last 15 years stretching from China, Dubai, Germany, Holland, UK, and the USA. In the last 5 years, Nick has developed a hawk's eye for sustainable tech and the human-centric marketing and sales procedures that come with it. With his far-reaching and strong network within the logistics industry, Nick has been able to open new avenues and routes to market within major industries in the USA and the UAE. Nick lives by the ethos, “Give more than you take." His professional mission is to make the logistics industry leaner, cleaner and greener.
Sales Support Intern
Alex is pursuing a Marketing degree and a Certificate in Legal Studies at the University of Georgia. As a dual citizen of both the US and UK; Alex has studied abroad at University College London and is passionate about travel and international business. Through her coursework at the Terry College of Business, Alex has gained valuable skills in digital marketing, analytics, and professional selling. She joined Supply Chain Now as a Sales Support Intern where she assists the team by prospecting and qualifying new business partners.