Scott Luton welcomes John Paxton to the Supply Chain Now Radio studio for episode 209.
[00:00:05] It’s time for Supply Chain Now Radio. Broadcasting live from the Supply chain capital of the country, Atlanta, Georgia. Supply Chain Now Radio spotlights the best in all things supply chain the people, the technology’s the best practices and the critical issues of the day. And now here are your hosts.
[00:00:29] Hey, good afternoon Scott Luton. Here with you, Lauvergne Supply Chain Now Radio. Welcome back to the show. On this episode, we’re gonna be speaker speaking with one of the senior leaders at MHR, the nation’s largest material handling. Logistics and Supply chain Association’s MHR is also the organization that powers two of the largest industries trade shows in North America. The Pro Matt and the Mode Ex tradeshows on a quick programing note. Like all of our series on Supply Chain Now Radio, you can find our replays on a wide variety of channels Apple podcasts, SoundCloud at YouTube, Spotify, you name it, wherever else you get your podcast from, as always. We’d love to have you subscribe. Don’t messy thing. So with that said, let’s welcome in our featured guests here today, John Paxton, CFO and CEO designate with MHR. John, how you doing? I’m doing great. Great. Great to be here. Great to have you. We had a great interview. One of your car senior level call leadership colleagues here a second ago and looking forward to diving in with you and really gaining some of your insights and and pick your brain as well. Great. So with that said, you know, John, where we like to start these interviews, these podcasts, is kind of give our listeners a sense of who they’re hearing from. Right. You know, probably most importantly, your professional journey, the time from what took place to get you here today with MHR. So tell us a little more about yourself and your journey.
[00:01:56] Okay, great. Yeah. So. So my journey started with a company, Dematic, Cranes and Components and the North American business. And what Dematic was doing was importing components from our German headquarters and manufacturing overhead cranes and supplying them in the North American market. So started out in a roll of software development, moved into roles of outside sales, product management and and then for the past 15 years was the president of the North American business. And along with that, we had our manufacturing facilities in North America. We also had a large service component. So we had in the crane world, you have field service technicians that go out and service cranes. So that’s a big part of the of the cranes. Once you sell them, you have to be able to support them. You want to keep them running. Yes. So we had a large service contingency of with 45 locations around the U.S. taking care of our products out there.
[00:02:53] Wow. And it’s interesting to hear you from a software background to hansell and then and then senior levels leadership. Very well rounded.
[00:03:04] Yeah. I mean, actually, my my training was as a mechanical engineer, but early days it was in software design and then developing systems to automatically design and develop products. So so so back then it was kind of high tech. Now everybody has an app for something. But. But through the course of that, had many different stretch assignments and ultimately ended up leading the North American business for about 15 years.
[00:03:32] Outstanding. And you joined. Tell us more about when you joined the MHR and more importantly, what opportunity do you see? Why did you join the organization?
[00:03:43] Yeah. So actually, it’s interesting. My career my regular career also was augmented because we were a member company of MHR. So through the course of being a member, I attended MHR events for about 20 years and then moved into the MHR volunteer board level.
[00:04:02] So first off, being president of some of the industry associations, the Crane Association and the monorails and the Hoist Association. But then after that actually moving into the board and finished with the chairman of the board position for MHR. So from there, again, the background of not only the product side and the market side, but also really the day to day operations of MHR. So I kind of came to MHR with both of the member perspective and also the operational side of MHRA already in place. So the opportunity came where George Prest, our CEO, was looking to looking to retire at the end of 2020. And they were looking for his successor and and the opportunity arose. So with my background, I thought it was a perfect fit.
[00:04:50] Wow. Well, congratulations. That’s a huge jachin only. Imagine the burden responsible that comes with. But also on flip side. All the opportunities that you have that as you lead MHR into what’s next. It’s pretty exciting.
[00:05:06] Yes, it’s it’s quite a dynamic time for four MHR. And for the industry as a whole.
[00:05:12] Absolutely. You know, we were talking earlier and heck, we talk about it just from every show. It’s such an exciting time to be in the in the in Supply chain profession in some way, shape or form right now when it has a seat at the table. Unlike ever before, especially with the the global nature of business, that that’s never going back. Right. And the reliance of how we could talk about this in a second. But Supply chain is what makes it happens. What allows us to enjoy those things in those two day time frame soon to be one. Right. Yeah, that’s correct. OK, so let’s before only get your your input. Own leadership in a second. But if you could just for those that may be new to MHR in a very small nutshell, what what does the Magi do?
[00:06:02] So MHR is it’s a member company trade association. So we have about eight hundred members and they represent all different areas of the Supply chain. So primarily they’re manufacturers, consultants and integrators who are providing the solutions and the technologies in warehouse distribution and manufacturing. So we represent those companies and collectively MHRA focuses on on really four core values. And those are the first one is market access. So helping these companies connect with the customers and connect their solutions with customers. We also have a value center of connections. So networking, the opportunity to share, to collaborate on on different developments in the marketplace. We have a knowledge component to help our members make better business decisions. And then we also stake out a leadership or an industry leadership position. And that’s where we’re developing safety standards, product publications and specifications and ANSI standards to really help guide the development of products and guide the industry. So so we’re we’re delivering for our members on those four pillars of value. And those pillars also relate to the users of these type equipment.
[00:07:25] So there’s so much interest and demand and finding information and best practices across those four pillars. As you know, someone that has volunteered in the search industry association space for 15 or 15 years now. Folks are constantly looking to connect with a resource or connect with your network colleagues or. Yes. Fortunately, safety seems to have taken a front seat over the last 10 or so years, which is a welcome development. So it seems like you are bringing a ton of value to the table.
[00:07:56] Yeah, and members, they find value in any or some or all of those components. So our members come in and they’re looking for some are smaller companies that are just getting started. Some are emerging tech, some are large, very large corporations. And each of those has a unique thing that they’re looking for from a value point of view. And our objective is to is to deliver on that. And and similarly with the users, when they come to the MHR members, our members represent the industry leaders, the people who are driving the industry and who are leading in the technologies. So it’s a great place for the users and the buyers as these types of equipment to connect and and find the leaders in the industry.
[00:08:41] So we’re talking here with John Paxson, C.O.O. and CEO designate with MHR. So, John, as as a senior leader here at the organization, a rock n roll organization, I’ve really enjoyed as I was telling George earlier, I volunteered on the executive committee with the George Logistics summit back in 2018 when it was co-located with MHR and learned a ton, went to my first MDX event and they really enjoyed ourselves. So as a senior leader, let’s let’s talk about leadership for a second. And so and of all the different traits and attributes that go into making successful leaders and we all know leaders are built in much different ways. There’s a wide diversity in terms of how folks approach successful leadership. But there’s one attribute that you feel is more important than any of the others. What would that be for?
[00:09:32] For me, it’s it’s the team. It’s building the team and building the collaboration and the teamwork and developing the team that that for me in MHI is worlds. We have about 30 people on our team. And what they’re able to produce and there and to deliver either at our trade shows or annual conference is really based on a complete, collaborative, highly motivated professor. Team. And for my role, it’s to it’s to develop them, to help them support them, provide direction, but without the team leaderships, it’s all the other things to still matter.
[00:10:12] I’m with you. Great answer. I love that. I think that that speaks volumes to them. Especially with an organization that puts on the huge shows such as Pro, Matt and Modoc, you’ve got to have an engine V8 engine behind its things. OK, so, so moving right along. Let’s talk about how industry is evolving. And you know, I know you’ve been here about a year and that might sound like a short period of time, but a rate of change just continues to get faster and faster and a lot of a lot is taking place in the year.
[00:10:45] But how do you see industry evolving over the last couple years and into the next few years?
[00:10:52] Yeah, so so when I look at what you can read about trends and all the different things that are going on, and I I kind of break it down a little bit more simple from the technology trends. I break it down more into the into the customers, the consumers and and what’s going on in the marketplace and the demands. So if you think about it in your own personal life, I want to pick up my phone. I want unlimited selection. Right. I want to press the button and I want it delivered to my house or I want to drive by and pick it up. And, oh, by the way, I don’t want to be charged for that. And while you’re at it, why don’t you track some of my searches online? My previous buying habits and Bayo to predict what I might be wanting. Right. And send me that information, too. And I’d appreciate that, because then I can buy that those things also. So we can all relate to that, because, you know, whether you whether you get an Amazon Prime package at your door every day or once a month, or whether you go to the grocery store and drive up and they put the groceries in the back of your car. But all of these type of expectations, what it’s driving in our industry is, is phenomenal innovation, because the only way to meet those those requirements or I mean, it’s two ways.
[00:12:10] One, meet them or or just keep up or get ahead of the curve depending on where you are in that cycle. The only way to do that really is to is to innovate. And so so what that’s driving in our marketplace is in the past, warehousing distribution was take a pallet, put it on a shelf, get a fork truck, take it back down, stick it in a truck and send it to a retail shop. Now, it’s we want to take an individual piece. We want to package it. We want to label it. We might want to customize it. And we want to deliver it. And in a one day time period or or hours could be hours. So that completely changes the dynamics of the warehouse, the supply chain, how you get it last mile. All those dynamics have completely changed. Even the retail process has changed. So people say, oh, retail is going away. I think. I think retail, many of those stores are in a good position if they put the automation in those locations. So customer demand is driving it. And then from there, we you know, we can talk more about robotics and automation and artificial intelligence. Those things are are being spawned by the drive for innovation.
[00:13:23] So before we dove into some other trends and maybe the ones that are most fascinating to you, do you feel that the consumer market, the consumers in general, you know, beyond you and I as consumers, because we kind of haven’t we know kind of what’s on the back side of why we enjoy these these one day and to the delivery times.
[00:13:45] Do you feel in general the global consumer universe, as it were?
[00:13:50] Is is better connecting that you that consumer experience in that those quick service levels to and supply chain that makes that happen? Mm hmm.
[00:14:03] Yes. So, you know, there’s there’s a couple components to that. You know, there’s the idea when I just want I know what I want and I want it fast. You know, that’s one type of shopping. Pick up your phone search. Press the button and you got it. So so that and that supply chain, you know, you’re looking at not only where the product is and had the inventory and handling it and packaging it, but then then there’s the other experiential side of buying things. So the experiential side is I want to see it. I want to touch it. And oh, by the way, I still want it delivered to my house very quickly or I wanted immediately. And and it’s it’s an interesting way that this is developing the marketplace and the companies that are leading in this are finding a way to deliver on both pieces of that. Absolutely. So that’s that’s what we’re finding is it’s really interesting in the full range of supply chain how you accomplish that. It’s. Not just making it now and putting it on a shelf. It’s how do you deliver it all the way to the house? To someone’s house. Absolutely.
[00:15:05] And what we’re seeing is consumers are connecting those dots better. You know, we’re seeing different different folks say the word supply chain. Then it was never on the tips of these tongues. In previous years. And that’s neat to see because, you know, that’s going to help us vie for talent in the industry that we serve in. It’s going to help folks better appreciate what takes place in these wide variety of facilities so they can appreciate those those consumer experiences that you speak of. OK, so so let’s let’s stick on the trends industry trends topic here. What else? In the end, you just rattled off a few minutes ago. You know, I.T. and machine learning and a blockchain is some of the usual culprits that folks talk about. And there are fascinating and they’re transforming how business is done globally. But what else? The those or anything else in terms of topics and trends that you are tracking more than others right now? A couple of those.
[00:16:12] Yeah. So so what what we’ve seen and it’s really developed over the past the three, three to four years and it’s moving extremely fast. Is is the the arrival of robotics and automation into the into the warehouse and distribution into the chain. So robots are are not really new. They were they were always been in manufacturing as far back as we can go. You know, doing repetitive tests. So welding our car frames, cutting, cutting certain types of material, handling certain repetitive things that that’s been going on. That’s not really new technology. But when you take the customer demands and actually, you know, the difficulty finding people for warehousing distribution to handle all of these packages in parts, the solution becomes robotics. But the challenge with that is not everything that chips is the same. In fact, most of it is different. So you need speed, you need flexibility to handle different types of items. And and then you also need the mobility. So what we’re seeing now is, you know, robots with with vision systems and and and machine learning so that they can actually see things now. So it’s not just programing a robotic and letting it do something now they can see what they’re doing and vision, make decisions and adjustments.
[00:17:39] And then the other developments are in the the grippers and the handlers on the end of the robots. So before you put a welding gun on there and it moves to a position and makes a weld and moves back. Now, depending on what comes out of the automated systems, you need to be able to handle that and grip it. So we’re seeing those those technologies really advancing and you see those on display at the trade shows where it’s amazing from one year to the next. What companies are developing. So and then the other part of that is, OK, you know, robots were big and, you know, you’d have a need a cage around them and you would have to mount them on the floor and put a big pit in place and. Right. And right now, robots are mobile. You put them on an HIV or an EMR, automatic robotic or mobile robots. And now you can travel around a facility. They have guidance systems. They have laser lasers, systems that are safety for seeing, you know, so that they can see also. And now what you have is a complete ackerly, complete supply chain within four walls of automated systems and robotics.
[00:18:49] And it is the rate of change. And the speed of that change is absolutely remarkable. And this is what you’re describing for folks that may not have been in some of these facilities. It is current state. This is not, you know, future state technology is here now and then and more, you know, next week, maybe, maybe some more advanced. You mentioned the trade shows and of course, mutex coming up in March 2020 in Atlanta. These are exceptional opportunities to get out and see these technologies. You know, one of my co-host, Greg White talks about how basically folks come out in the Mode X and some of them setup many manufacturing plans right there on the trade show that the scale and scope of it is really interesting. And I think one of the big reasons and see if you would agree, John, to come out to the Mode X is important pro perhaps of the world is to gather the you know, do your market until I gather and right. Connect, see what these organizations do and see what were the solutions are today and and what’s coming.
[00:19:54] Yes. Yeah. So. So with the trade show what we described. Trade show and say, what is it? It’s it’s our material handling and supply chain industry on display at one place. You can basically see the whole industry and and what companies do is they they are setting up, you know, automated warehouse and distribution systems. They’re setting up with robotics, they’re setting up a GVS is all these products are there and they’re running. So, you know, it’s one thing to see it on a brochure or see it on a Web site. Here you can see it. Touch it. You can talk to the people who are who are doing the programing, who have implemented it. So it’s it’s our industry on display. A lot of equipment is brought in for those type of demonstrations. And then the other part of it is, is we combine about 150 educational sessions along with that. So our member companies are producing and putting on educational sessions about the latest technologies, what’s going on. So you can come see the products, see the industry on display. But also it’s a learning experience and you can learn about what’s happening and where things are headed. So it’s it’s really I call it a two for one. It’s not an educational conference. It’s not just a trade show. It’s really both.
[00:21:15] Absolutely. So then you’ve got great keynotes. Ambassador Nikki Haley Tansley, George George Prest is going be talking about the state of the industry report. And I think I interviewed MHR, interviewed over eleven hundred business leaders and basically asked him what’s what’s keeping you up at night? That’ll be an interesting keynote. And then for fun, you got Payton and Archie Manning to do Archie certainly in the Hall of Fame. Peyton, you’ll be there soon. You’ll be there. That’s right. And there and I understand are taking the stage together. So that should be a really interesting fun keynote. And. You know, keynotes, of course, get people out as well who folks wanna hear from, right?
[00:21:56] Yeah. And with the keynotes, we really try and offer component to the show that’s even beyond the technical side.
[00:22:05] And so, you know, technical side learning about the products and the solutions. But Nikki Haley in her case was a governor of South Carolina learning, you know, heavily into the supply chain, heavily into the things that were going on in the ports and communication. So she can provide perspectives on that. So, you know, we’re trying to provide other types of business leadership perspectives. And Peyton and Archie Manning’s case, you know, to to have with Archie Manning, have two sons. You know, there’s two Super Bowl winning sons, which is, you know, and he’s already a Hall of Famer. Probably both of the other ones will probably get there. But, you know, how did that work and how does that how does that feel? And so that will be more inspirational and leadership type discussion. So we combine that. We also have a student days along with our Moto X show where we’ll have between 200 and 300 students coming, where we introduced them through tours to the industry at large. So so we’re introducing new students to the supply chain looking to engage talents. And we have educational components at the at the high level and the in the overall sessions and then the specific Technical sessions. I love it.
[00:23:21] And, you know, going back to the Mannings, mutex has a history of. You’ve got to bake in the fun factor, right. I mean, the complexities and and the professions and the hardworking days and the stress that goes across the business world and certainly in an supply chain has our fair share of that. So everyone needs a breath of fresh air. You know, in the past, Mike Rowe with Dirty Jobs, I believe, has been one of the keynotes. Jim Gaffigan, I think a couple years ago was one of the the breath, a breath of fresh air as this neat to see Madox continue that trend, because that’s really important. Mm hmm.
[00:24:00] Yeah. And on the Wednesday of the show, we have Peyton Manning and an Archie Manning. And then we also in the evening we have industry night. So and we give out one of the key parts of that is we give out innovation awards. So the companies from who are part of Moto X will if they have new products, they can apply to be judged for innovation awards. And we have a panel of users. So it’s not judged by anyone with MHR. It’s not judged by their peers. It’s judged by users of the products will go around and actually pick the innovation award winner. And it’s really become quite a big event, if you can imagine, with all the innovation going on and then to be someone who’s picked as the top innovation award. It’s really quite an event. So we present that on on Wednesday night at the show. Yeah. And then we also have a comedian that in the evening to really kind of kick. Back and enjoy ourselves. Love it.
[00:25:00] And you also know that competition factor as folks are vying to finish first. So sounds like a fun night. Look forward to that in 2020. Well, appreciate your time. And to our audience. So mutex 20/20 is right around the corner, believe it or not. I mean, it’s already November. Time flies right ahead. Ah, Tom, waste no time. Right. And flaunted a calendar. So we are going to Supply Chain Now Radio as we broadcasting live throughout all four days of Murdoch’s 20/20. And that runs March 9th through the 12th again in Atlanta, Georgia. And John, one of the neat things that we’re excited about is we have partner actually we partner with image on a couple different levels, not just to help drive content and sit down with with leaders to get their insights and their thoughts and their perspective during the event. But mutex is also gonna be hosting our 2020 Atlanta Supply chain Awards, which we’re really excited about. Christian Fisher Prezant, CEO with Georgia Pacific, is going to serve as our keynote for this second year event and we’re expecting 300 people, which is a big number for us. But mutex is expecting 35000 of our best friends and neighbors have come out at one of the largest supply chain trade shows in all of North America. And is it is free to attend, if I’m mistaken, which which is unheard of.
[00:26:26] Yeah, it’s free to attend. So so the idea is that to allow people who are interested in this equipment to come to the show free of charge, come out, see what’s happening on the floor, interact with our members. And it is it is free of charge.
[00:26:42] Outstanding. Well, so to learn more about Madox 20:20, you can go to motets show dot com in ADX Show dot com again. As John mentioned, it’s free to attend. What an incredible learning opportunity and networking opportunity. Best practice sharing opportunity. You will not regret that you came out. It’s gonna be a trend. Should not be missed. Now with the Atlanta Supply chain words a little bit different, there’s a small registration fee. Are nomination’s registrations and sponsorships are all open. You can learn more at Atlanta Supply chain Awards dot com. Big thanks to John Paxton, C.O.O. and CEO designate with MHR. I’m looking forward to not only seeing through that this year and through Moto X of what MHR does, but you know your vision as you and the team executes on it in the year and the months and years ahead.
[00:27:34] Great. Yeah, it’s gonna be a great show. And and the technology. It amazes me every time I go to the show, every year there’s a brand new products, brand new companies. It’s gonna be really exciting.
[00:27:45] Absolutely. Looking forward to learn more again at Moto X showed. So to our listeners, check out other upcoming events, replays over interviews, other resources at Supply Chain Now Radio dot com. You can also find us on Apple podcast, Spotify, SoundCloud, YouTube, wherever else you find your podcast from. Of course, we’d love to have you subscribe so you don’t miss anything on behalf of the entire team here. This is Scott Luton wishing you a wonderful week ahead and we will see you next time on Supply Chain Now Radio. Thanks, everybody.
John Paxton is the Chief Operations Officer and CEO Designate of Material Handling Industry Association (MHI). Mr. Paxton has over 30 years of leadership experience in the material handling industry and was President of Demag Cranes and Components, North American crane manufacturing and service operations.
Mr. Paxton has been recognized for his volunteer leadership in the material handling industry. This leadership includes serving as Chairman of the Board of MHI, as well as the president of the Crane Manufacturers Association of America (CMAA), the Hoist Manufacturers Institute (HMI) and the Monorail Manufacturers association (MMA).
Mr. Paxton is a graduate of the Ohio State University with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering, and of Kent State University with an MBA focused on international business. In addition, he completed the University of Michigan executive leadership program.
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.
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!
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.