Supply Chain Now
Episode 348

Episode Summary

“We’re no longer just selling products in the marketplace as a company, but all this data is required to be part of the product to make the sale.”

– Michael Wurzman, President and Founder of RSJ Technical Consulting

 

Early in his career, Michael Wurzman experienced the first Earth Day and the 1970’s energy crisis.

In 2000, faulty construction caused a gas pipe in his home to fail, leading to a catastrophic explosion. Fortunately, no one was hurt, and while Michael and his family lost almost everything they owned, he found his calling: working to remove toxic products and materials from our supply chains.

It can be no wonder, then, that he is now the President and Founder of RSJ Technical Consulting, a firm that specializes in product substance compliance and multi-tier supply chain sustainability.

In this interview, Michael shares the struggles involved in the fight to improve the sustainability of the global supply chain with Co-hosts Greg White and Scott Luton:

  • Data quality is a challenge that needs to be addressed collectively by entire industries, not contained within the walls of specific companies. This requires high levels of collaboration and visibility.
  • Companies should be more driven by how much additional value they can provide than by how much they can cut their costs or product prices.
  • True sustainability requires insight into an entire product lifecycle, from manufacture, through use, and in how materials are disposed of.

Episode Transcript

Amanda Luton (00:05):

It’s time for supply chain. Now broadcasting live from the supply chain capital of the country, Atlanta, Georgia, heard around the world supply chain now spotlights the best in all things, supply chain, the people, the technologies, the best practices, and the critical issues of the day. And now here are your hosts.

Scott Luton (00:28):

Good morning, Scott Luton here with you on supply chain. Now welcome back to the show on today’s episode, we’re speaking with a leading expert in environmental compliance for manufactured products as we continue our interviews with the automotive industry action group. More on that in just a moment. A quick programming note before we get started here. If you enjoy today’s conversation, be sure to find us and subscribe wherever you get your podcasts from. Okay, so let’s walk them in my fearless esteem cohost on today’s show, Greg white cereal supply chain, tech entrepreneur and trusted advisor. Greg, good afternoon. Good morning. Good afternoon, morning, day, night time. It’s really hard to tell, isn’t it? It is. It is. Love what Jim and the folks at AIG are doing and glad to talk to Michael today. Absolutely. Let’s do that. So when we welcome in our featured guests for today’s episode, Michael wardsman, founder and president at our S J technical consulting. Michael, how you doing?

Michael Wurzman (01:32):

Doing great today. Staying healthy.

Scott Luton (01:35):

That’s good. That’s uh, moved up on the priority list here these days and great, great for you to be with us and looking forward to learning more about your story. Um, so for starters, Michael, you know, we, we typically like to get a sense of of the character we’re interviewing here. So tell us more about yourself and give us a couple of tidbits from your professional journey.

Michael Wurzman (01:56):

Okay. Well I’ve been involved in environmental type concerns since high school when I was, the co director would have been an organizer. I guess I would put it of our high school protests. The first year that earth day went national, got gas masks on protesting the air quality during the time of the formation of the EPA. And that has stayed with me all my life. And um, I’ve been going through as an engineer, um, it’s sort of a unique approach. I was this rare engineer that believed you needed to understand the political process and got a degree. I wanted to call political engineering, which of course in the time of Watergate was a not quite approved in that name, but we saw where things were going during the energy crisis just in 73 and little did I know what I studied then would actually become time many years later. But in pursuing the route, uh, I had left the corporate world when my daughter who has Tourette’s, needed more attention and I left so I could structure my business, work around her and family and form my company back early 91 called it RSJ technical where RSJ are the initials of my three kids. And so,

Greg White (03:34):

and I’ll do all of the three names, Michael R,

Michael Wurzman (03:39):

it’s Rachel, Stephanie and Joshua. And those are we trying to decide how we should use them for name? It was decided chronological order was definitely best. Yeah.

Greg White (03:51):

Like everything else with your children, that’s the only way that can even be seen as remotely fair. Right?

Michael Wurzman (03:57):

Absolutely. Each one is totally unique and uh, they were all willing to agree on that even though they were quite young. So Michael,

Greg White (04:07):

this might be before Scott was even born, but you referred to a time when, if I recall I was a kid at the time. Um, there were gas lines, right. Is that um, is that when you were talking about 73 ish or whatever? I don’t remember the exact year, but I recall my father getting a Christmas present

Michael Wurzman (04:37):

was,

Greg White (04:37):

and I spent my vacation at the gas station.

Michael Wurzman (04:40):

Right. That was the, uh, in 73 was the, the oil embargo when we had the crisis gas prices more than tripled when up to a whopping 75 cents a gallon and slightly higher in areas. And I was in Purdue at the time and on the debate team and we, we’re debating the energy crisis and I looked and we had to study all this legislation and everything going on in the official goals of the country war to be an oil non oil dependency within 30 years. And then I watched all the legislation that came through. They guaranteed that we are going to be dependent on oil for a lot further in the future. And that’s when it’s bird me to understand and realize this connection between legislation, which you know, in this area I’m dealing with now is compliance and the role governments have. People have how it all happens. So you can look at what’s there and get a better feel for what goes forward, what to expect. Yeah, that was, that was the time.

Greg White (05:50):

So I wonder if you ever, sorry, I don’t mean to derail us too much Scott, but I wonder if you might’ve ever debated Southwest

Scott Luton (05:58):

Missouri state university.

Michael Wurzman (06:00):

Do you ever recall that? I don’t think we just recall that

Scott Luton (06:07):

my father was the debate coach at Southwest Missouri state, so I bet I feel a bit like your children, which is you can’t win an argument even if you’re right.

Michael Wurzman (06:19):

My father, well, my debate, well, I don’t have that situation because my son went on in debate. Oh, okay. That’s been a debate coach and there’s no way I’m going to, no way I’m going to win an argument there. He is so far ahead of whatever I was able to do.

Scott Luton (06:40):

Outstanding. So, so before Michael, before we talk more about RSJ technical consulting, uh, and, and if anyone I can certainly appreciate and, um, blessed be the ties that bind and we always find how small the world is with each of these podcasts interviews. Uh, I love the common threads on the debate world that we have between your two collective families. Um, but let’s talk about when you think about these pivotal moments in your journey that really helped frame up you’re a global view on things. Clearly the first earth day and the energy crisis, uh, were, were some early big influential events, uh, in your, uh, in your journey. W when you think about what you did prior to launching, um, you’re from what, what, uh, is there a role that sticks out that really, um, helps shape how you view the world?

Michael Wurzman (07:35):

Oh, absolutely. Back in 2000 actually, April 26th to be exact. We had a guest pipe break in our house due to faulty construction 15 years earlier and the house blew up.

Scott Luton (07:50):

Yeah,

Michael Wurzman (07:50):

burnt down, actually made the national news under the title blown to bits and from that whole disaster, luckily no one got hurt. It was just lost virtually everything we owned, but while the firemen were camping out the fire, I asked one of them why when there’s no visible smoke, are you wearing all that protective gear? And I said, yeah, you see all of your neighbors sitting around smelling that kind of Swedish sweet Mel with the smoke. That’s all carcinogenic toxic materials are breathing. If we were exposed to that on a daily basis, we would have cancer and no time at all. And that’s why we have to cover and protect our entire bodies and be using the breathing apparatus even though you don’t see any flame or smoke coming because it’s still coming out of this mass. And as I know, just off hand said, man, I really appreciate everything you did trying to save stuff.

Michael Wurzman (08:53):

I mean obviously not much could be done. I said, we’re still waiting to thank you. And he turned to me and said, yeah, uh, if you could help get rid of all these toxic substances from building products, that would be the best way to thank us. Wow. And it was just sort of a side comment that he costs out, but it was in the back of my mind. And then, um, that got me aware of just how much toxic substances were in products, which of course being creative. I started doing a little bit of research following and I realized a problem and three years later my brother in law was having trouble doing this reporting to the automotive industry for one of his clients, its biggest client and dangerous it, Mike, you’re an engineer, my guys are having trouble with this. You think you could do some work in the evenings on the side and help me out. How do you say no to family? Right. And so I jumped in, I took a training and started doing it and developed an act and back. This customer loved the work. And then the next thing I know his customer asked him, can you, would you mind if we contacted the guy who was helping you? Cause we got problems, we need help. And the next thing I knew instead of a sideline at night, uh, I decided to make this my day job.

Scott Luton (10:19):

Wow. So Michael, I’ll tell you to come back from that a huge disaster, uh, and, and become a successful entrepreneur. We’re going to have to dedicate a second episode just to talk about those leadership skills in that perspective because that would, yeah, that was spelled doom in the end for many folks that such a devastating setback. So we’re going to bring you back on for that, but let’s pivot the calls clearly that moment. And, and, and, uh, the couple of years that followed form the Genesis that led to RSJ technical consulting. So Greg, I know we’ve got some questions around his farm. Well, yeah, so I want to start with one thing and that is, I wonder if you ever circled back with that firefighter, um, to let them know the inspiration that they provided.

Michael Wurzman (11:14):

Well as total irony would have it about four years ago, he moved into the house right behind ours when I was still living in Texas and I did let them know the impact. He didn’t even remember the offhand comment. I just remembered him.

Scott Luton (11:33):

What is the chance of, yeah. So Michael, tell us a little bit about, I know your company has gone through a couple of stages, right? So can you tell us a little bit about what you do with, I guess today with RSJ technical consulting?

Michael Wurzman (11:53):

Okay. We started out, I started out doing, yeah, the services were contract with companies and actually looking at their data, collecting it from the supply chain, combining it, doing what was needed and passing along to their customers. And that was, did that for a number of years and realized that the data quality was really pretty bad at the start misses back around 2005 and that’s when I realized data had to become a process and it had to be something that we just didn’t say. If the person accepts, if the person who I gave it to accepted it, it must’ve been right. It must’ve been good enough for them. And so that was the first major change and I started realizing and put together in 2007 the model that this has to be part of the bigger environmental picture to really understand what you’re doing. And that was sort of like the next transformation of what and what’s happening. And that’s when I really start getting involved heavily with AIG. So initially. Yup.

Greg White (13:23):

So you work with, um, the, I am D S which is the international material data system formed by several of the German car makers, I believe. And it is that sort of the impetus for how you make this, um, industry, you know, kind of an industry wide standard or how does that play into that?

Michael Wurzman (13:54):

Okay. In the early days when I first started, we had a little bit with the IMDs system, which is a computer. Sure. It allows [inaudible] any company jail along the supply chain. But a good chunk of the industry was still using a spreadsheet approach, which had all kinds of issues, not only being, it could be eight to 10 times as long to handle any specific data requests. And as a person who was always fascinated by industrial engineering, um, obviously you want to push things towards more efficient processes and higher quality processes. And that’s when 2005 I came up and gave a presentation to what was then the IMDs steering IMDs advisory committee to the automotive steering committee out of the U S one data quality issues.

Greg White (14:57):

Got it.

Michael Wurzman (14:59):

And you know, the old saying, no good deed goes unpunished after presenting information like that. Of course, the expectation is to be involved totally and be part of the solution.

Greg White (15:13):

Right. That, and that is, that’s a good life lesson for people. So what, um, if, if you present a problem, be prepared to be a part of the solution, right? Or if you present, uh, information, uh, beep and show your skill, be prepared to have your talent co-opted. Um, yeah. So, so you are a, you call yourself managing director. I’m interested in, um, you know, how, how you, how you spend your day, um, you know, the managing director, CEO, president, whatever you call it, means a lot of different things for people. So, um, tell us a little bit about a day in the life of Michael wardsman, um, formerly known as Mike Weitzman. Again, part of your efficiency initiative, right? You mentioned it earlier, was to shorten your name, but I think you realize that for credibility purposes, Michael was, was more effective. Is that a fair estimation?

Michael Wurzman (16:27):

Right. The older you get, the more you listen sometimes to the device of your kids.

Greg White (16:33):

There you get an idea of a day in your life, you know, at RSJ,

Michael Wurzman (16:41):

okay, eight, the name that I’ve kept my firm, small people said, gee, why aren’t you doing stuff? We’re making all kinds of money on data collection. And my answer has been because it shouldn’t be done the way we’re currently doing it right now. People outsource it. They, you know, I’ll be honest, that’s where I make most of the money between that and training. But it should be part of the core competence in integrated from the design process on in a company. And so with that approach,

Michael Wurzman (17:22):

that’s, you know, this is probably a lousy business model, trying to teach people to be self confident and do the service that you provide, but it’s what has to happen for the future. So in the course of my day, I’ve got, I handle certain customers with data requests direct, I like to handle the difficult ones, the ones that are outside the norm so that I can continually be training and learning and finding out more. So I have the firsthand experience seeing what’s going on so I can better advise. You can give advice and that takes a chunk of the day, needless to say, okay, emails, all the correspondence and the rest it’s a and overhead, I don’t like it, but I probably spent Oh good hour or two a day researching, just keeping up where things are going, where the trends are, tying it into what are the issues being had by companies looking at where we need to be going in trying to understand and synthesize the advice. A portion of my day obviously is spent sales working on bringing in business

Greg White (18:40):

and then

Michael Wurzman (18:41):

uh, taking care of the folks that are working with me to be there to handle any technical issues or questions that come up.

Greg White (18:49):

Do you really want to spending a good portion of your day trying to solve this? Okay. And every day life may be trying to solve this data collection problems. So I have to ask, and I have to ask this, and that is what do you see as the biggest issue and what do you see as the biggest opportunity? In turn, you said that with the way we do data collection is wrong and that’s a bold, and I love that statement. I can’t argue that by the way, but what do you see as the biggest wrong and what would you see as the biggest opportunity for improving it?

Michael Wurzman (19:30):

It’s the biggest strong is that the attitude throughout our whole industry and supply chain is we pull data, we ask and say, I need you to supply it. It must be part of this as opposed to companies

Greg White (19:45):

having the data

Michael Wurzman (19:47):

done in a way that can provide a competitive advantage. Now

Greg White (19:54):

going back,

Michael Wurzman (19:55):

I have a MBA in sales and marketing and I realized the integration of that with technical and as a salesperson you want to sell quality and value

Michael Wurzman (20:07):

and we’re no longer just selling products in the marketplace as a company, but all this data is required to be part of the product to make the sale. So why shouldn’t we be looking at is one and looking at approach that creates the data set that has enough value that it will be part of the company [inaudible] sales process. Got it. In which case you don’t have to worry about collecting data because companies are competing to give you data and make sure their data, this is the same quality, they compete on the hard. And that’s a whole fundamental change in thinking and the paradigm shift that I’m trying to get across to industry.

Greg White (21:00):

So, so considering all of that, um, I, I think of, I’m, I’m always trying to kind of understand the superpowers of companies or people or whatever super powers I define as if I’m walking down the hall or, uh, I would, I would ordinarily say in my business, but right now let’s say in my home or my home office or at my dining room table and I have a pain that is weighing heavily on me as a leader.

Michael Wurzman (21:34):

Mmm.

Greg White (21:35):

Or, um, yeah, let, let’s say I have that pain. What are the key words, um, or the core pain that I’m feeling that helps me understand that you and RSJ technical can, can, um, address or solve my problem?

Michael Wurzman (21:57):

Nope. One of the key pains that you’re doing this, the all this IMDs the reporting work, that’s an expense that’s bearing on me, especially in today’s times where with all the business disruption, it’s part that doesn’t go away. That weaknesses see an economic value too and people are looking at how do I do this cheaper? Yeah, and my how is looking at this and saying you’re not, you’re framing the question wrong. It’s about how do I get value that lets me grow my company and make money by doing this. And so I’d like to tell people get to that point. Now, key thing that I like to pride my company on is when we do training, when we work with companies we don’t want to show here is how you do it. We want to convey an understanding of the Y of the importance so that there is a framework to build once thinking in one’s approach on after we work with someone, they understand the bigger picture, how it fits in so it can solve this problem and look at it as an opportunity to make money instead of a cost they have to cut because times are so tough.

Greg White (23:35):

Yeah. Yeah. And I think you know, your, your approach goes to the, my, one of my foundational beliefs that

Scott Luton (23:46):

is I’m collecting or sharing or accumulating data really has to be for a gold-based purpose, not for reporting obligation. And it sounds to me that you’re driving your customers more towards that direction, right? Know what you want and then what data gets you there.

Michael Wurzman (24:10):

Right now, after that salient event with my house and learning about toxic substances, I become passionate. In fact, some people say overly passionate about wanting to see the change occur to get these toxic substances with many of which we don’t even know are toxic yet out of our products and out of the environment so that we can improve the health of the generations to follow. I used to save my kids. Now I say to my grandkids.

Scott Luton (24:45):

Yeah, so, so Michael, I know that your firm works with OEMs and, and a variety of suppliers across all tiers to help them comply with all the regulations out there. I’m really looking to lower short term compliance, risk and costs and a lot more than that question for you though. Uh, in this day and age where we have so much data at our fingertips, right. It’s the information age for sure. Is it, um, do you find that in your work that you’re doing with these groups, is there more or less transparency to getting to the information that they need to understand that impacts their risk and compliance?

Michael Wurzman (25:27):

There has been a little more transparency. It’s still, it’s going to be changing dramatically because when you look at the whole picture, we are in a situation where not just getting toxic substance out of exposure, we have to look at where the whole drive is coming out of Europe with the circular economy and being able to make sure that not only our products safe from exposure in use and the chemicals and manufacturing are safe while being handled in use. But the final products that we manufacture at their end of life, the materials that make it up are reusable into new products and then taking a look to try to make it where we are looking at that as well as energy consume, greenhouse gas effects, water and the rest. So we have a sustainable structure manufacturing wise right now. So much gets thrown away or could be recycled, but it’s not that it’s not going to be sustainable for the long term.

Scott Luton (26:41):

Right. Yeah. We have a of work to do to really make strides towards that more circular economy model, including as you alluded to, um, you know, taking that CE proactively into product design well upstream so that we have more options, um, in the life. Um, all right. So Michael, we’re going to pivot away from your good work that you and your team are doing at RSJ technical consulting. And I want to go broader with this next question. You know, obviously the world’s changed a lot has been changing the last few months globally, but here in the States, you know, by the time this interview publishes, you know, last two months have been extremely challenging in this, if you, as you look at the global supply chain industry and to end and then the whole circular economy, what trend or development or issue really stands out in your mind that, that you and your team are spending a lot of time on right now?

Michael Wurzman (27:37):

Right now, big issue has been with the implementation of the framework for a, to achieve a circular economy. The first step in the EU was an update of the waste framework directive, which is requiring additional regions hoarding into a database in Europe by the end of the year. And while automotive is ahead of virtually all industries and having that data, we still need work on reformatting and structuring it and with my clients that are outside automotive, many ignored it because the legislation wasn’t being enforced and they’re now realizing, wait a second, we have got to meet this empathy, your deadline. Much of our supply chain is shut down. People are not able to get the data, get what we need, and yet we have this looming deadline and what we are trying to work through is how you meet that goal and we’re not even sure what the date may be.

Michael Wurzman (28:46):

There’s always a chance because of the virus going around that it may get delayed and give us more time, but in reality it’s not giving us any more time because we’re losing time due to people not being able to function, do their jobs, collect and gather and report the type of data we need. And this is really creating a lot of angst in the industry and that’s what we need to help them realize their solutions or ways to work during this period. How to structure it, how to target because saw many clients I talked to award, what happens if I miss the deadline? And the answer is quite simply this is part of going to be part of customs. You just don’t sell into that market. And that’s a scary thought, especially when business is down.

Greg White (29:47):

Yeah. And I think, look, I think we’ve seen, um, that the spirit of, of government right now anyway is, is to, um, give some leeway in terms of these deadlines. But those can’t take, you can’t count on that. Right. And, um, you know, what we’ve seen companies do is to

Michael Wurzman (30:12):

inquire now,

Greg White (30:16):

right inquire earlier. And what we’ve found is that the agencies that are responding are more than happy to identify a small personal, um, experience. Here in Georgia. We have what we call the birthday penalty, which is that your license plates come due the month of your birthday. And, um, and um, they have delayed that for two months. So you’re getting some leeway there, but it wasn’t really announced you had to ask and I think companies will do that.

Michael Wurzman (30:49):

We’ll need that in order to make sure that they’re in compliance. Right now we have to keep in mind the EU has said the assumption, we’ve had the full data in the structure they want now going on seven years and because they haven’t checked for it and it’s level, there’s an assumption that you shouldn’t have to be collecting it in a crisis mode. Right, or reformatting or enhancing it or structuring it. Yeah.

Greg White (31:18):

Yeah. So we’re much better with rules and steps and plans and compliance in Europe than we are in the States. Undoubtedly, GDPR is a great example. The privacy initiative that they have for individuals is a great example and there was a similar scramble in the States to

Michael Wurzman (31:35):

why was that? Right now there is, well, we’re scrambling on that. We have to keep in mind there’s a clause in all this European legislation that it’s designed to make the European economy stronger over the longterm. Now in a downturn where everything could be checked at customs, it’s not beyond the pale to look that for product entering the EU. It could be used as somewhat of a trade barrier. Yep. And it’d be hard to say it’s a trade barrier when it’s something you supposedly were already doing for seven years. Yeah.

Greg White (32:19):

Yeah, no doubt. Well, we’ve definitely got to pay strong attention to that. And I know that you and I know that AIG are, uh, and other organizations are, are contributing and that’s part of the reason that we’re talking is to get the industry aware of this. You might or might not be aware, Michael, that this event, the AIAG, um, summit is now a, is now no charge to attend virtually. And so we’re, I think the hope is that more and more people from the industry will attend. So maybe let’s shift gears a little bit towards that. And you had shared some interesting thoughts about the value of AIG and organizations like that, but tell us a little bit about your personal feelings about, uh, the automotive industry action group and what you get out of it. And you know, what you see as the value of an organization like this? Well,

Michael Wurzman (33:17):

the beauty of AIG is they’re structured to be a collaborative effort towards problem solving. And I’ve come in with my expertise working to help solve and drive part of the problem, you know, private solution to problems that I see. But also by getting involved, and I’ve been very heavily involved now for a number of years. I can participate in a number of additional work groups that I may not have time to take a leadership role or begin, but I can learn through my participation. And what I found is when you act, if we parked, I just hate and contribute in a group. And then our and other ones you can learn and you actually can learn through the sharing of information even more than you contribute. And so even though I spend what a large amount of time in various meetings, activities with AIG, it is dramatically helped me in putting the entire picture and the understanding for being able to direct and guide people to solutions and work through an organization. The way it’s structured, like AIG I think can be invaluable to companies.

Greg White (34:35):

It’s the old adage, right? You get tenfold what you give essentially

Michael Wurzman (34:42):

absolutely within this organization. So,

Greg White (34:46):

so to our listeners that you can of course learn more about AIG at AIG dot. Or we’re talking about the automotive industry action group and, uh, Michael, I want to make sure that our listeners know how to connect with you and, and learn more about your firm. So please share.

Michael Wurzman (35:03):

Okay. The best way is we have a web presence@wwwdotrsjtechnical.com and from there there are links where you can get in touch with us and we encourage you to do so. And we’ll be glad to talk to you about how we can help, how we can try to teach companies how they can turn this into a competitive, the advantage to grow in a market, especially one of uncertainty.

Scott Luton (35:38):

Great point. You know, uh, Greg as, um, we learned Michael’s story today and as much of the story we can get to and in 40 minutes or so, um, to big takeaways for a number one to turn up a personal trategy in a tragedy into a business success and to do so without, you know, really, um, drowning in what’s, what’s devastating, right? When you lose your house and everything you own. So that really sticks out in my mind. And then secondly, it’s clear. No one is unmistakable. Michael loves what he does. He’s got a passion for helping companies get better, helping companies get the information and look for doing the research. I mean, he was born to do this, Greg.

Greg White (36:26):

Well, like I like a lot of people who have these kinds of gifts. Um, the, the solution finds you in a way. I mean, he presented so much value. Michael, you presented so much value to your brother-in-law’s client that you know, they, they basically pulled you into your business after someone who didn’t even remember the comment that they made, which is so often, it’s amazing how often somebody changes somebody’s life. And it’s amazingly meaningful to that person. But as you said, a castoff comment for that person, just the string of events that led you here and the passion and, and skill that you present here is inspiring. Absolutely. And it’s hard to say that about data, Michael, but it’s true. It is. It is an amazing story. So

Scott Luton (37:17):

thank you Michael. Thank you for taking time out of your, a, of a busy environment for everyone right now. Uh, we’ve been chatting with Michael wardsman, founder and president at RSJ technical consulting, which of course is he shared stands for his three children, Rachel, Stephanie and Joshua. Michael, thanks so much for your time. Thank you. Pleasure doing this. Terrific. Stay safe and we will be reconnecting with you shortly. And we’re going to wrap up here. So stay with us just as we wrap up this episode. Again, you can connect with, uh, Michael wardsman on LinkedIn or check out, they’re from@rsjtechnical.com. A big thanks to Michael and his team. Uh, Greg, another great episode. Um, you know, I loved, I love this is kind of a different angle than a lot of our recent episodes, right? Yeah,

Greg White (38:05):

yeah, it is. And I, you know, and I think it’s, um, it’s interesting look like we’ve talked about Jim and Tanya and the crew at AIG. They provide a tremendous service to the automotive industry, obviously a difficult time for that industry now. And, um, and you know, for everyone of course, but having groups like this and having people like Michael and Jim and Tanya, uh, dedicated to your success, I think bodes for the industry.

Scott Luton (38:36):

Agreed. Great point. And on that, we’re going to wrap up here today, uh, to our audience. Be sure to check out a wide variety of industry thought leadership at supply chain now, radio.com Fondas and subscribe wherever you get your podcasts from. Check out our upcoming webinar on global visibility, uh, that’s coming up, uh, well here in mid April. I hope you’ll join us for that on behalf of our entire team. Scott Luton. Wish you a successful week ahead. Stay safe, don’t panic. Please follow the expert advice, precautions that have been disseminated, uh, and know this, that brighter days. Lie ahead. See you next time here on Supply Chain Now.

Would you rather watch the show in action?

Watch as Scott and Greg welcome AIAG CR Summit speaker, Michael Wurzman to Supply Chain Now.

Featured Guests

Michael Wurzman, President and Founder of RSJ Technical Consulting, is a leading expert in substance based compliance reporting and turning “compliance” into a value proposition. For the past sixteen years, he has focused on ELV, RoHS, REACH, Prop 65, Conflict Minerals and related substance-based compliance reporting. Currently he is driving a cross industry approach to environmental compliance reporting focused on making data collection an integral part of a company’s quality processes. His company provides consulting, compliance program/process implementations, training and managed reporting services. Michael has a BSE from Purdue and an MBA from Indiana University.

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Greg White

Principal & Host

Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

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Adrian Purtill

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Adrian Purtill serves as Business Development Manager at Vector Global Logistics, where he consults with importers and exporters in various industries to match their specific shipping requirements with the most effective supply chain solutions. Vector Global Logistics is an asset-free, multi-modal logistics company that provides exceptional sea freight, air freight, truck, rail, general logistic services and consulting for our clients. Our highly trained and professional team is committed to providing creative and effective solutions, always exceeding our customer’s expectations and fostering long-term relationships. With more than 20+ years of experience in both strategy consulting and logistics, Vector Global Logistics is your best choice to proactively minimize costs while having an exceptional service level.

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Joshua Miranda

Marketing Specialist

Joshua is a student from Institute of Technology and Higher Education of Monterrey Campus Guadalajara in Communication and Digital Media. His experience ranges from Plug and Play México, DearDoc, and Nissan México creating unique social media marketing campaigns and graphics design. Joshua helps to amplify the voice of supply chain here at Supply Chain Now by assisting in graphic design, content creation, asset logistics, and more.  In his free time he likes to read and write short stories as well as watch movies and television series.

Donna Krache

Director of Communications and Executive Producer

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

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Vicki White

Controller

Vicki has a long history of rising to challenges and keeping things up and running. First, she supported her family’s multi-million dollar business as controller for 12 years, beginning at the age of 17. Then, she worked as an office manager and controller for a wholesale food broker. But her biggest feat? Serving as the chief executive officer of her household, while her entrepreneur husband travelled the world extensively. She fed, nurtured, chaperoned, and chauffeured three daughters all while running a newsletter publishing business and remaining active in her community as a Stephen’s Minister, Sunday school teacher, school volunteer, licensed realtor and POA Board president (a title she holds to this day). A force to be reckoned with in the office, you might think twice before you meet Vicki on the tennis court! When she’s not keeping the books balanced at Supply Chain Now or playing tennis matches, you can find Vicki spending time with her husband Greg, her 4 fur babies, gardening, cleaning (yes, she loves to clean!) and learning new things.

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Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

As the founder and CEO of Supply Chain Now, you might say Scott is the voice of supply chain – but he’s too much of a team player to ever claim such a title. One thing’s for sure: he’s a tried and true supply chain expert. With over 15 years of experience in the end-to-end supply chain, Scott’s insights have appeared in major publications including The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and CNN. He has also been named a top industry influencer by Thinkers360, ISCEA and more.

From 2009-2011, Scott was president of APICS Atlanta, and he continues to lead initiatives that support both the local business community and global industry. A United States Air Force Veteran, Scott has also regularly led efforts to give back to his fellow veteran community since his departure from active duty in 2002.

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Allison Giddens

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.

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Greg White

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.

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Chris Barnes

Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain is Boring

Talk about world-class: Chris is one of the few professionals in the world to hold CPIM-F, CLTD-F and CSCP-F designations from ASCM/APICS. He’s also the APICS coach – and our resident Supply Chain Doctor. When he’s not hosting programs with Supply Chain Now, he’s sharing supply chain knowledge on the APICS Coach Youtube channel or serving as a professional education instructor for the Georgia Tech Supply Chain & Logistic Institute’s Supply Chain Management (SCM) program and University of Tennessee-Chattanooga Center for Professional Education courses.

Chris earned a BS in Industrial Engineering from Bradley University, an MBA with emphasis in Industrial Psychology from the University of West Florida, and is a Doctoral in Supply Chain Management candidate.

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Karin Bursa

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.

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Kevin L. Jackson

Host of Digital Transformers

Kevin L. Jackson is a globally recognized Thought Leader, Industry Influencer and Founder/Author of the award winning “Cloud Musings” blog.  He has also been recognized as a “Top 5G Influencer” (Onalytica 2019, Radar 2020), a “Top 50 Global Digital Transformation Thought Leader” (Thinkers 360 2019) and provides strategic consulting and integrated social media services to AT&T, Intel, Broadcom, Ericsson and other leading companies. Mr. Jackson’s commercial experience includes Vice President J.P. Morgan Chase, Worldwide Sales Executive for IBM and SAIC (Engility) Director Cloud Solutions. He has served on teams that have supported digital transformation projects for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the US Intelligence Community.  Kevin’s formal education includes a MS Computer Engineering from Naval Postgraduate School; MA National Security & Strategic Studies from Naval War College; and a BS Aerospace Engineering from the United States Naval Academy. Internationally recognizable firms that have sponsored articles authored by him include CiscoMicrosoft, Citrix and IBM.  Books include “Click to Transform” (Leaders Press, 2020), “Architecting Cloud Computing Solutions” (Packt, 2018), and “Practical Cloud Security: A Cross Industry View” (Taylor & Francis, 2016). He also delivers online training through Tulane UniversityO’Reilly MediaLinkedIn Learning, and Pluralsight.  Mr. Jackson retired from the U.S. Navy in 1994, earning specialties in Space Systems EngineeringCarrier Onboard Delivery Logistics and carrier-based Airborne Early Warning and Control. While active, he also served with the National Reconnaissance Office, Operational Support Office, providing tactical support to Navy and Marine Corps forces worldwide.

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Enrique Alvarez

Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español

Enrique serves as Managing Director at Vector Global Logistics and believes we all have a personal responsibility to change the world. He is hard working, relationship minded and pro-active. Enrique trusts that the key to logistics is having a good and responsible team that truly partners with the clients and does whatever is necessary to see them succeed. He is a proud sponsor of Vector’s unique results-based work environment and before venturing into logistics he worked for the Boston Consulting Group (BCG). During his time at BCG, he worked in different industries such as Telecommunications, Energy, Industrial Goods, Building Materials, and Private Banking. His main focus was always on the operations, sales, and supply chain processes, with case focus on, logistics, growth strategy, and cost reduction. Prior to joining BCG, Enrique worked for Grupo Vitro, a Mexican glass manufacturer, for five years holding different positions from sales and logistics manager to supply chain project leader in charge of five warehouses in Colombia.

He has an MBA from The Wharton School of Business and a BS, in Mechanical Engineer from the Technologico de Monterrey in Mexico. Enrique’s passions are soccer and the ocean, and he also enjoys traveling, getting to know new people, and spending time with his wife and two kids, Emma and Enrique.

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Kelly Barner

Host of Dial P for Procurement

Kelly is the Owner and Managing Director of Buyers Meeting Point and MyPurchasingCenter. She has been in procurement since 2003, starting as a practitioner and then as the Associate Director of Consulting at Emptoris. She has covered procurement news, events, publications, solutions, trends, and relevant economics at Buyers Meeting Point since 2009. Kelly is also the General Manager at Art of Procurement and Business Survey Chair for the ISM-New York Report on Business. Kelly has her MBA from Babson College as well as an MS in Library and Information Science from Simmons College and she has co-authored three books: ‘Supply Market Intelligence for Procurement Professionals’, ‘Procurement at a Crossroads’, and ‘Finance Unleashed’.

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Mary Kate Soliva

Host, Veteran Voices

Mary Kate Soliva is transitioning from active duty in the US Army. She is currently in the Doctor of Criminal Justice program at Saint Leo University. She is passionate about combating human trafficking and has spent the last decade conducting training for military personnel and the local community.

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Jeff Miller

Host

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.

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Amanda Luton

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.

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Clay Phillips

Business Development Manager

Clay is passionate about two things: supply chain and the marketing that goes into it. Recently graduated with a degree in marketing at the University of Georgia, Clay got his start as a journalism major and inaugural member of the Owl’s football team at Kennesaw State University – but quickly saw tremendous opportunity in the Terry College of Business. He’s already putting his education to great use at Supply Chain Now, assisting with everything from sales and brand strategy to media production. Clay has contributed to initiatives such as our leap into video production, the guest blog series, and boosting social media presence, and after nearly two years in Supply Chain Now’s Marketing Department, Clay now heads up partnership and sales initiatives with the help of the rest of the Supply Chain Now sales team.

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Trisha Cordes

Administrative Assistant

Trisha is new to the supply chain industry – but not to podcasting. She’s an experienced podcast manager and virtual assistant who also happens to have 20 years of experience as an elementary school teacher. It’s safe to say, she’s passionate about helping people, and she lives out that passion every day with the Supply Chain Now team, contributing to scheduling and podcast production.

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Billy Taylor

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.

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Chantel King

Social Media Manager

My name is Chantel King and I am the Social Media Specialist at Supply Chain Now. My job is to make sure our audience is engaged and educated on the abundant amount of information the supply chain industry has to offer.

Social Media and Communications has been my niche ever since I graduated from college at The Academy of Art University in San Francisco. No, I am not a West Coast girl. I was born and raised in New Jersey, but my travel experience goes way beyond the garden state. My true passion is in creating editorial and graphic content that influences others to be great in whatever industry they are in. I’ve done this by working with lifestyle, financial, and editorial companies by providing resources to enhance their businesses.

Another passion of mine is trying new things. Whether it’s food, an activity, or a sport. I would like to say that I am an adventurous Taurus that never shies away from a new quest or challenge.

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Lori Sofian

Marketing Coordinator

Lori is currently completing a degree in marketing with an emphasis in digital marketing at the University of Georgia. When she’s not supporting the marketing efforts at Supply Chain Now, you can find her at music festivals – or working toward her dream goal of a fashion career. Lori is involved in many extracurricular activities and appreciates all the learning experiences UGA has brought her.

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Katherine Hintz

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.

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Ben Harris

Host

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.

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Page Siplon

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).

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Kristi Porter

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Kristi Porter is VP of Sales and Marketing at Vector Global Logistics, a company that is changing the world through supply chain. In her role, she oversees all marketing efforts and supports the sales team in doing what they do best. In addition to this role, she is the Chief Do-Gooder at Signify, which assists nonprofits and social impact companies through copywriting and marketing strategy consulting. She has almost 20 years of professional experience, and loves every opportunity to help people do more good.

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Kevin Brown

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Kevin Brown is the Director of Business Development for Vector Global Logistics.  He has a dedicated interest in Major Account Management, Enterprise Sales, and Corporate Leadership. He offers 25 years of exceptional experience and superior performance in the sales of Logistics, Supply Chain, and Transportation Management. Kevin is a dynamic, high-impact, sales executive and corporate leader who has consistently exceeded corporate goals. He effectively coordinates multiple resources to solution sell large complex opportunities while focusing on corporate level contacts across the enterprise. His specialties include targeting and securing key accounts by analyzing customer’s current business processes and developing solutions to meet their corporate goals. Connect with Kevin on LinkedIn.

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Sofia Rivas Herrera

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

Sofia Rivas Herrera is a Mexican Industrial Engineer from Tecnologico de Monterrey class 2019. Upon graduation, she earned a scholarship to study MIT’s Graduate Certificate in Logistics and Supply Chain Management and graduated as one of the Top 3 performers of her class in 2020. She also has a multicultural background due to her international academic experiences at Singapore Management University and Kühne Logistics University in Hamburg. Sofia self-identifies as a Supply Chain enthusiast & ambassador sharing her passion for the field in her daily life.

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Jose Miguel Irarrazaval

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.

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Demo Perez

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

Demo Perez started his career in 1997 in the industry by chance when a relative asked him for help for two just weeks putting together an operation for FedEx Express at the Colon Free Zone, an area where he was never been but accepted the challenge. Worked in all roles possible from a truck driver to currier to a sales representative, helped the brand introduction, market share growth and recognition in the Colon Free Zone, at the end of 1999 had the chance to meet and have a chat with Fred Smith ( FedEx CEO), joined another company in 2018 who took over the FedEx operations as Operations and sales manager, in 2004 accepted the challenge from his company to leave the FedEx operations and business to take over the operation and business of DHL Express, his major competitor and rival so couldn’t say no, by changing completely its operation model in the Free Zone. In 2005 started his first entrepreneurial journey by quitting his job and joining two friends to start a Freight Forwarding company. After 8 months was recruited back by his company LSP with the General Manager role with the challenge of growing the company and make it fully capable warehousing 3PL. By 2009 joined CSCMP and WERC and started his journey of learning and growing his international network and high-level learning. In 2012 for the first time joined a local association ( the Panama Maritime Chamber) and worked in the country’s first Logistics Strategy plan, joined and lead other associations ending as president of the Panama Logistics Council in 2017. By finishing his professional mission at LSP with a company that was 8 times the size it was when accepted the role as GM with so many jobs generated and several young professionals coached, having great financial results, took the decision to move forward and start his own business from scratch by the end of 2019. with a friend and colleague co-founded IPL Group a company that started as a boutique 3PL and now is gearing up for the post-Covid era by moving to the big leagues.

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Kim Winter

Host, Supply Chain Now

The founder of Logistics Executive Group, Kim Winter delivers 40 years of executive leadership experience spanning Executive Search & Recruitment, Leadership Development, Executive Coaching, Corporate Advisory, Motivational Speaking, Trade Facilitation and across the Supply Chain, Logistics, 3PL, E-commerce, Life Science, Cold Chain, FMCG, Retail, Maritime, Defence, Aviation, Resources, and Industrial sectors. Operating from the company’s global offices, he is a regular contributor of thought leadership to industry and media, is a professional Master of Ceremonies, and is frequently invited to chair international events.

He is a Board member of over a dozen companies throughout APAC, India, and the Middle East, a New Zealand citizen, he holds formal resident status in Australia and the UAE, and is the Australia & New Zealand representative for the UAE Government-owned Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA), the Middle East’s largest Economic Free Zone.

A triathlete and ex-professional rugby player, Kim is a qualified (IECL Sydney) executive coach and the Founder / Chairman of the successful not for profit humanitarian organization, Oasis Africa (www. oasisafrica.org.au), which has provided freedom from poverty through education to over 8000 mainly orphaned children in East Africa’s slums. Kim holds an MBA and BA from Massey & Victoria Universities (NZ).

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Nick Roemer

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Nick Roemer has had a very diverse and extensive career within design and sales over the last 15 years stretching from China, Dubai, Germany, Holland, UK, and the USA. In the last 5 years, Nick has developed a hawk's eye for sustainable tech and the human-centric marketing and sales procedures that come with it. With his far-reaching and strong network within the logistics industry, Nick has been able to open new avenues and routes to market within major industries in the USA and the UAE. Nick lives by the ethos, “Give more than you take." His professional mission is to make the logistics industry leaner, cleaner and greener.

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Alex Bramley

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.

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