“Companies are not necessarily aware of how their supply chain is sourced, but in this day and age with the empowered consumer, it’s so much easier for the consumer to find out, put pressure on the brands that they buy.”
– Dr. Assheton Stewart Carter, Founder & CEO of TDI Sustainability
Corporate sustainability issues have to be addressed collectively, not just by one industry or tier of company. The more global a supply chain is, the more necessary it is that they work with their business partners to address environmental impact and social inequality.
Dr. Assheton Carter, featured speaker at the AIAG CR Summit, is the Founder and CEO of TDI Sustainability. He is well aware of the complexities of consumer behavior – including the disconnect between their preference for ethically sourced goods but their reluctance to spend additional money on them at the point of purchase.
In this conversation, Dr. Carter shares his sustainability experience and recommendations with Supply Chain Now Co-hosts Greg White and Scott Luton:
Intro – 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):
Hey, good morning, Scott Luton here with you on supply chain. Now welcome back to the show. On today’s episode we’re speaking with the CEO of one of the leading sustainability advisory firms in the world. This interview is part of our continuing collaboration with the automotive industry action group, so stay tuned as we look to increase your supply chain acute on a quick programming. Before we get started, if you enjoy today’s conversation, be sure to find us and subscribe wherever you get your podcasts from. Hey, want to welcome in my fearless cohost on today’s show. Once again, Greg white cereal supply chain, tech entrepreneur and trusted advisor. Greg, good morning. Good morning. I love how you give me credit for fearlessness. Well, great to be back with you and great to continue. Really a series of hits with these thought leaders that are plugged in in some way, shape or form with AIG. Right.
Assheton Carter (01:24):
Yeah. Love. I love, first of all, I love the initiative, right? A corporate responsibility initiative that AI ag is putting on and um, great hearing from all of these companies and how they are working to be better to, as we said earlier today, right. To do well by doing good.
Scott Luton (01:44):
Absolutely. Great point. And you’re referring to our supply chain buzz, which we live streamed earlier this morning. Um, when a welcome in. On that note, I want to welcome in our featured guests here today. Ashton Carter, PhD, CEO at TDI sustainability. Ashton, good morning. I’m wanting to see both. Great. Thank you for taking time out during a challenge, challenging set of circumstances and just a busy time in general.
Assheton Carter (02:11):
Great to have you here. Yeah. Great to be here.
Scott Luton (02:15):
So, uh, in typical fashion, we always liked that kind of start our podcast conversations, getting a sense of, of our featured guests and their personal and professional journey. So Ashton, if you would tell us, tell us a little bit about where you’re from, uh, and give us an anecdote or two about your professional journey leading to where you are now.
Assheton Carter (02:36):
So thank you very much. Well, I’m, I’m speaking to you from the, from the UK, which is where I was born and started my what? But I will say lived in Mmm. In the, in the U S for 12 years. And you’re right, it’s a good question. Um, you know, when we were, when I was at the high school, um, creating or joining us, sustainability wasn’t really on the, it wasn’t really on the list of professions you would choose. That is if it has been a bit of a journey. Mmm. So I wouldn’t say there’s ever kind of like one moment, one moment of awakening or realization that kind of drove in this direction that there’s certainly being a, um, a couple of the popular themes, um, throughout my career. Mmm. The first is, I guess for a long while, aye. You know, it’d been alarmed, sometimes even shocked and given to address the conversation of quantities and the environment, this use that, that we, that, that we all face and, and in some parts of the world are very obvious, you know, from the USA to Africa, from Europe to Asia.
Assheton Carter (03:42):
Um, and you know, I became very kind of conscious about these things and began to question what we could do about it and driven to and driven, driven to find, find solutions. But I’m not really an actress. I never wanted to, to kind of take to the streets and complain because I think that means by that is because I never kind of saw it as one individuals, the pool to one individual or one industry sector or government or an agency. But it’s more of a systemic problem, um, that we’ve got to address and we’ve got to address it, um, collectively. So that was kind of one of the themes which, um, kind of drove me to where I am. The second team is,
Scott Luton (04:22):
Hey, real quick question on that note, it sounds like, um, it’s more about the movement. It’s not about one individual action, but it’s more about a movement to really drive more to your point, a systemic change. Is that right?
Assheton Carter (04:39):
I think that’s absolutely right. Yeah. I mean, we, we’ve lived in, we’ve lived in, you know, our parents’ generation, my parents’ generation. They lived in a, in a world which is kind of binary but more binary. It’s very clear what was good and what was bad. And we hadn’t begun to, they hadn’t, the world hadn’t begun to feel like it does now. The strings of a growing population and, and resource use. Um, and you know, essentially the success and the economy now that we’ve had, but now we’re beginning to fill those strains, but it’s all part of a, a large system. And, you know, supply chains are one of those systems, um, which had kind of, um, uh, are, uh, immutably international. They’re not going to reverse. So the question is like, how do we enter into that system? What can we do as we’re all part of that system?
Assheton Carter (05:27):
What can we do to kind of come with different cogs and wheels to, um, to, to shift it in the right direction and away from social inequality and environmental damage. And, and that’s really where my second thing came in I think is, you know, cause I’ve always been fascinated by business, always seen businesses. A M as a creative, as a creative force, you know, creates jobs, creates technology, it creates solutions and creates value for great [inaudible] when it wrong and companies behave badly. Um, for sure it can hold up progress to a bit. But generally, um, you know, the business business does, the business sector does fine entrepreneurs, do you find ways to um, serve society to their products and services? And you look around you nowadays and the technology, the engineering, the innovative business models, um, Oh, kind of quite standing. Okay. So really, I guess why I’m here in the job that I do now is because I’ve tried to combine those two things. You know, how can you bring that creative force, um, of business too, um, be a part of, um, changing the system so that we avoid and reduce these environmental and social inequalities. And so it’s really this business as a force for good, um, love that. I want to find that sweet spot,
Scott Luton (06:52):
love that created that combining those two massive energies between the creative force that has business and doing good and, and, and doing good in a meaningful action oriented way. Um, real quick before we dive deeper into your, one of your organizations to the ass sustainability, you mentioned you lived for 12 years in the States. What part of the country?
Assheton Carter (07:13):
[inaudible] I was in Washington, beefy, but travel a lot around, um, in Washington DC at shows. Quite fortunate. I was working for a conservation group and also international development group in DC. And um, we got to work with some of the biggest, um, biggest us companies. So we worked with Ford motor company, we worked with, um, I helped Disney, um, build the sustainability program with Marriott, um, United airlines. Um, so it was a great experience because of course the U S is as vast in its economic power and win, it turns its mind to doing something good. Um, it, it, it excels on the global stage.
Scott Luton (07:56):
I appreciate you sharing that. We’re gonna have to bring you back for deeper dives into those, those engagements with some of those iconic brands you mentioned. Um, it does sound like this is been quite a journey for you. I mean, sort of a natural progression into TDI I think. And, um, you know, this in its way has led you here, so can you tell us a little bit about what you’re doing? Yeah,
Assheton Carter (08:28):
yeah. So I mean, I, I’ve formed TDI sustainability only about, um, six years ago. It really, because I noticed that, um, so, uh, you know, a few firms who Mmm [inaudible], uh, expertise and sort of engineering some who provide expertise on kind of risk management, some who did more kind of strategic, um, um, engagement. Um, but none of them really kind of brought it all together on the me Fe sustainability banner. And, you know, we believe, are you still on the PDI sustainability about to be a sustainable, the company, you know, it’s as much about, it’s all those different facets of the business. Of course, it’s about how do you, um, maintain a profitable, um, business and the resilient brand. Um, but how do you actually manage your risk? How do you, um, capture value from marketing? Um, and you know, how do you actually demonstrate you how to positive impact.
Assheton Carter (09:25):
So what we try to do is combine those different things under one roof. Mmm. So we have, Mmm, you know, everybody can afford different segments. We have TDI strategies, which is where we have our longterm engagements to advise companies on how to structure for sustainability and be recognized for what they’re good at. Um, we also have TDI research where we do, um, a deep dive into responsible sourcing and where materials come from. And that was one of the things I’ll be speaking about at the upcoming conference. That is a publication we came out with, uh, 18 months ago called material change that maps and identifies the risks associated with 50 different. Um, cause you different materials supply by also, um, brought my auto companies, electronic companies, and then we had TDI audit, which is really the, um, the due diligence and risk management. Then finally, the one which is really exciting for us is PDI impact.
Assheton Carter (10:22):
We don’t want to stay, um, an investment, an impact investment vehicle, which is really a platform for downstream companies. Also companies and electronics and jewelry companies. Um, the money to put the money they have available under their grant budgets to good use upstream and invest directly into, into mining communities and farming communities. Mmm. So they can actually help those communities, which are right at the other end of their supply chain build, um, viable small businesses. So you pull that all together and it’s a way to connect the system. Is this downstream with the upstream or move it into in, uh, in the right direction towards, you know, business as a force for good, um, across the whole value chain.
Scott Luton (11:08):
So you’re really helping these companies first of all know where they are in, in terms of fair trade or,
Assheton Carter (11:17):
um, you know, or, or
Scott Luton (11:19):
ethical business practice, get to where they want to be and then verify that they get or, or sustain that. And then to fund further exercises in that regard. It sounds like you handle all aspects.
Assheton Carter (11:33):
Yeah, I mean, um, you know, a perfect engagement prof, um, might start, um, where the company wants to understand it’s supply chain. Um, so, um, you know, some of our brands might have, you know, they could have, you know, 60 different supply chains and they might, you know, 30 or 40 different materials and they don’t know where all those materials come from and they don’t know whether those materials are associated with things that are going on because the interest of our brand from reputation or, um, or, you know, some event that triggers a media response. Um, and these can range from all the different minerals and metals three to buy plastics, the cycle plastics, lever rubber, um, the whole kind of dammit. Really. Okay. And so we help them identify what are those materials and what are the respected risks between them. And they need to know that so they can actually prioritize cause you can’t do everything on day one.
Assheton Carter (12:36):
So how do we actually prioritize and then as you said, to go and verify those practices and set up a strategy, even verify those practices or those suppliers and then to prioritize, you know, if you want to actually make a difference, how can you actually do that upstream. So one example of that is, um, um, the work we’re doing with cobalt and the Democratic Republic of the Congo am cobalt as you know, is um, one of the main ingredients for the batteries. Sure. Important for our future mobility. Right. Um, and then the DRC is also, you know, if you read, if you Google DRC and cobalt mining, you’ll see that it’s associated with child labor and human rights issues and environmental problems. Um, and the answer, the, one of the challenges for, um, companies is bad. You know, you might have cobalt in your product. Mmm. But the chain, it might pass through 40 different hands before it gets to you.
Assheton Carter (13:43):
He goes from you, the small scale mind, autism mind three, two crude refiner exporter to refinery, um, in China, then to a parts manufacturer and eventually kind of winds its way down. So your problem is a balancing company is how can you actually contribute to making a difference upstream when you don’t have that direct line of that direct line of connection. And so what we’ve done there, we’ve launched something called the fair cobalt coalition and we’ve, um, we have several companies in Europe, um, and some coming on board in the U S and also in China and we’re getting together two, um, and also the government of the Netherlands as well. I’m getting together too, creator a fund so we can invest into those small scale mines and help to eradicate child labor alternatives to dangerous mining and improve the situation at the mine. Mmm.
Assheton Carter (14:38):
So wow, that’s really, that’s really exciting because you, you know, you can help companies, Mmm. Understand their risks, manage their risk, but also turn that on its head and turn it into a buck to you. Um, and provide a platform for companies actually to demonstrate that that part of this solution, not just the name part of the, not just part of the problem. Well, I think that that’s, I mean that’s a big initiative and I think that it’s important for companies to resolve that, first of all, it’s the right thing to do, which, um, seems so unnecessary to say, but at times also, I think as you said, companies are not necessarily aware of how their supply chain is sourced, but in this day and age with the empowered consumer, it’s so much easier for the consumer to find out, put pressure on the brands that they buy.
Assheton Carter (15:35):
Um, and, and it reflects on those brands as well. We’ve been talking about this quite a bit, Ashton, in terms of, um, consumer awareness and I think that that will help the initiatives that you all are, are undertaking. Have you seen anything in that regard? Yeah, I mean, I think, um, I mean, I guess I’ve been doing this for 25 years now. And if I go back to all the studies, I’m looking at consumer behavior, um, I was even reading one today and they all say similar things that when you interview consumers, Mmm. They express the sentiment, but they prefer to buy a product that they know is more ethical or has less environmental damage. Um, but when it actually comes to the, when it comes to the cash till they continue to buy the products that they know. Um, so it’s difficult that it’s switch targets, you know, we’ve hit that price.
Assheton Carter (16:30):
Yeah. But that fed, you know, yeah. If you look just at the consumer, the consumer, you know, the opinions of consumers not only mediated through a cash sale, it also comes through the rise of the civil society. Um, so from NGOs and rights groups and they in turn put pressure on regulators. And so we have, I have seen in the last five to 10 years a real acceleration, um, an uptick in, um, the pressure from different areas. Um, this year in particular in Europe, I’m a little bit in the U S but in Europe in particular is a big focus on the investment sector and the investment set them out in Europe have to report on their investments on this is a whole new area where they’ve kind of ill-equipped at the moment on the stand, the different kind of sustainability in their investments. Um, and yeah, and for sure consumers, uh, I think especially now that we’re going to see an acceleration of, um, um, E commerce and the ability of consumers to comment, communicate, um, to those platforms. Yeah. I think it’s immutable and there it’s a very sticky, um, it’s, it’s a sticky phenomenon that isn’t going to go away. Hmm. So it sounds
Scott Luton (17:50):
like you’ve got a pretty, you’ve got a lot going on. I mean, with the phases of your business that you have. So a lot of people have a certain perception of the CEO and their role in a company. Can you give us an idea of what your day to day it looks like?
Assheton Carter (18:06):
Yeah, no, that’s good. Um, I think CEO’s sort of do everything really. I guess the, I mean, although I, you know, I manage our team of 20 or so people. Mmm. Really, I haven’t separated myself from the technical details and I kind of think of my job as, you know, having a suit in the boardroom, but the kind of boots in the mud when you’re going out to the field. So I in normal circumstances, not just now of course, I probably found spending 50% of my time traveling quite often to places like the Congo and Kenya, Tanzania, Ukraine, Mmm. Mid Georgia, um, South America, Columbia, Peru, um, to go out to these minds and these farms and these plantations where raw materials come from so I can understand for myself, Mmm. What are, what the conditions are like and what can be done. Um, and then a lot of my time is spent, um, you know, talking with our clients, you know, you, it’s really, it’s really a dialogue and it’s a, it’s about listening. You have to understand as much as you possibly can. Um, what are the issues that phrase facing what problems both inside their organizations and act. Yeah. Um, and then, you know, adapt our services to, to serve them completely.
Scott Luton (19:34):
So let’s, um, I want to broaden the conversation, Ashton, but I can’t help to go back to what you and Greg were talking about in terms of consumer sentiment. Um, you know, Greg and I discussed earlier this morning, uh, some recent Accenture research that showed at 42% of consumers say that they would stop using a brand if they disagreed with its words or actions on a social issue. So, you know, we all learned about the importance of communications and our, and our schooling, but gosh, picking the right stances and the right words, which have a value, uh, are arguably never more important than they are today.
Assheton Carter (20:18):
Yeah, I mean, um, you mentioned just before we ran on that, that’s, um, one thing that you look for as a authentic communication. Um, so we, we’re part of a, I’m an exercise doing a survey of generation Z and China, Mmm. A year ago for luxury brand, trying to understand what those 16, 17, 18 year olds are, our thinking and how that affects things. And two trends came through there. Um, okay. Possible in China, you know, contrary to popular belief, um, people are very directly affected by what we kind of think of as core responsibility and sustain them. But a team that’s because they base, you know, um, quite intense pollution, many of these cities, um, and they can see it affecting their, affecting their health and health is definitely, um, um, something which is arising, trend and cave in 19 is a Muslim blood. I’ve asked them to accelerate as well. Um, but one thing they said is back, no. One of the things which actually kind of, it got me really interested in what I do, whereas,
Assheton Carter (21:30):
um, the inconvenient truth, which seems like a long time ago now, do you remember the inconvenient tree? Yeah. Mmm. They don’t like the inconvenient truth if they don’t like facts and figures. So they don’t respond anymore. And I think that’s one thing that’s changed. Is that right? The Oh authority figure is no, there’s no longer has that same Mmm. That same trust in the public, in fact, um, last year when the surveys pointed out, but people are much more likely to, um, respond to, you know, thumbs up and thumbs down on social media than they are to report with lots of figures and charts in it. Okay. What they do respond to is, is stories and words that resonate strongly with a set of values. And they really do follow, um, icons with our generation. Mmm. He said those values as well. So I think to reach, to reach the, you know, the upcoming generation who have a, you know, audibly a stronger interest in what happens in the next 50 years. And some of us do, um, we need to, you know, really under row rather than five of them are facts and figures and try and make the case from a logical perspective. We need much more to, um, address it from a, um, an emotional and I’m sensing perspective. Um, I make sure that we speak to them authentically in a genuine way because they’ll, you know, sniff out the bullshit
Scott Luton (22:59):
pretty quick. Can you, I agreed. Agree. I love that. And you know, Greg, we can’t, we can’t pass over when you asked about Ashton’s role, I love this and I’m a blatantly still it suit in the boardroom and boots in the mud went out in the field. I mean that is, that paints such a great picture, doesn’t it? Yeah, yeah. I mean it’s, it’s a broad base role, right. And in an organization your size, I mean really any size it’s very appropriate. Yup. And read. Alright, so Ashton, as promised, let’s broaden the discussion out that you’re, you’ve already in just a few minutes time, been speaking at a lot of speaking to very intelligently on a lot of trends that are impacting just global supply chain but global business. Um, so what else, when, when you, when you think of the trends and developments that are shaping and innovation shaping global supply chain today, what else comes to mind that you’re tracking more than others?
Assheton Carter (24:01):
Well, the one that comes to front of mind at the moment and you know, sticking with, um, mineral and methyls Terrell supply chains is the relationship, the relationship between this circular economy, um, movement and a syndication core. The sources of the materials that we, that we need to build automobiles and electronics and, and we use a lot in construction. Um, so you know, the critical manuals like kind of manganese and copper, cobalt and molybdenum, zinc and even led, um, which is still used a lot in a lot in batteries. Now the hope is that the circular economy, this new way of thinking or the buyer’s way of thinking is gonna somehow the juice, the need for these materials. But we been doing some work recently with the world economic forum and looking at these trends and we can see that the, even with the potential of some of these for economy, Mmm.
Assheton Carter (25:05):
Initiatives, which is really kind of looking mostly at the cycling, the, the, the demand gap for these cooking materials is going to only grow over the next 10 or 15 years. Um, and so, you know, the hope that just recycling more, which is of course is a good thing to do, um, is going to reduce the need for raw materials. Um, isn’t totally true or not evident yet. Um, and so really can’t, is going to have to look at two things. They’re going to have to look cook. Um, yes. How do we, um, getting involved in the search for economy, um, but also where these war materials going to come from that we need. And although for sure with, um, Corena virus supply chains are gonna shift, especially a Powell and food supply chains, you know, minerals can’t just be moved around the world, their mind where they’re found.
Assheton Carter (26:00):
And so we’re going to have to figure out how are we going to have those materials on the market in places such as the DRC and, um, Ukraine and other places, um, which sometimes a little bit scary for downstream companies. Are we going to figure out how to, how’d you get them at? Also, again, have to look to see, uh, and begin to make a judgment about whether we want to go to pieces we haven’t been thought of before. So another project we’re working on is looking at deep sea mining. So this is looking, um, deep under the ocean to the ocean floor to extract cobalt and manganese and copper to Arab parts of the world that no one has ever been to. Um, that’s where it’s so dark. You can’t even see. Um, I may have to make a judgment whether that is better than getting it from, you know, an area which is known for, which is named for conflict.
Assheton Carter (26:57):
Cause those are interesting things. And finally I think it’s, what is that going to all that together? Is that going to mean for some of the traditional industries like mining, which are used to digging the hole in the ground and the covering minerals and sending it to market. And I think one thing that we’re beginning to see now is that the business model might change change. And instead of being mining companies, they own assets around the world, they might become Mmm. Mining service providers. Um, and that job would be to seek how to extract it. Then also different applications from different sources that haven’t traditionally been. I’m seeing. So I think over the next 10 years we’re going to see emergence of these sort of questions coming up and of course, um, auto companies and downstream industries are going to have to be part of that conversation. Um, and think of what are the implications of that business and most of me responsible sourcing,
Scott Luton (27:54):
you know. Um, so if I can pose this question to you and this, this, we didn’t get a chance to talk about this pre-show, but I really, um, one of the things that we’ve, we have spoken a lot about on any conversation that touches on sustainability and certainly the bigger picture circular economy is in. Greg, we were just talking about that this morning. You and I, we were talking about how we’ve got to push circularity thinking upstream, uh, and, and get it baked more effectively into, um, company’s strategy and so that we can really make as much progress as possible. I’m not, I can’t put that as elegantly as it needs to be stated. But Ashton wants you to get weigh in on that if you would. What instead of being in reactive mode, what are some of the ways that you’re seeing companies really move this thinking and in the discussions and the planning upstream so that we can get more done?
Assheton Carter (28:51):
Biopsying you mean upstream in the supply chain up the mine or you mean?
Scott Luton (28:55):
Yeah, that and in terms of upstream, maybe in a different way, meaning, um, you know, planning for it, upfront planning for it and product design instead of trying to figure out what to do with products after they’ve been made, you know, baking in CE, thinking in terms of manufacturability and product design.
Assheton Carter (29:16):
Yeah, no, I think that’s obviously right to me. I mean we sight thing is, um, really a matter of infrastructure and we just need to have, um, infrastructure built to, to recover. So in some ways, although that’s necessary and it’s surprising how some supply chains still have a lot only way to get it, there’s consumer waste. At least that’s a trend, which is understood. But to me the most exciting one is just as you say, is the, is the design. So it’s designing for the circular economy and how are we going to do that? Mmm. You know, how do you make disassembling equipment easier so it’s easier to recycle, you know, how can you make things more durable? No, we have one client, a small client, um, but innovative called Fasten, um, in the Netherlands, um, and Fairphone um, although it was getting there, it also gets, um, you know, fair trade gold into its product.
Assheton Carter (30:14):
It also has a modular thing. So this can be taken apart into like six to eight different pieces and it’s designed like that from the outset. So they only have, I mean, announced their phase three and they’d been around, you know, Kendall, 12 years, wherever, wherever kind of, I’m trying to companies, so thing companies would no change there devices every 18 months. So they’d been really thinking very hard about right now outset, how do you design the product? Um, so it’s more durable, but also retains its attractiveness to the consumer out of the cost. What is expected in the market. You know, and some European car manufacturers also done that and they designed cars with the decommissioning in mind. So how can a car be tied to dismantle without any bit going to landfill? So those sort of things I think is going to be the cutting edge if we can never released them. Um, yeah. Yeah, we can at least some resources too. Push about that innovation. [inaudible]
Assheton Carter (31:21):
so I wonder, this could be a really, um, really deep conversation, Ashton. So let me know if this is a deep or a dumb question, but, um, you know, the attributes for which we mined cobalt and manganese and some of these other items. I wonder if are companies exploring how to get the same attributes or capabilities without those products? Is anyone doing that yet? Then you have substitution. Yeah. Um, so in the, in the material change report that I mentioned earlier, um, and that I’ve been asked to comment on at the conference, that substitute ability was one of the, um, was one of the parameters that you looked at for different products. Um, so the answer is that, you know, some people are looking at that. It’s a matter of economics. Um, and how you can then as a ways, but there are some things that should just, um, you know, very difficult to replace such as sink.
Assheton Carter (32:28):
For example, Zane subspecialist metal. It’s a study said a lot with kind of steel and especially its applications are still, um, you know, although many of these industry institutions and military companies and electronic companies looked at alternatives, bye. They can’t always find them. So I think they will be, um, some substitutes. Um, also I think you’re talking about the consumer. I mean, I think this is the, the complexity of the consumer. Yes. As we kind of mentioned earlier, they want to buy products which are seem to be more sustainable, the less harmful, but they also have a quality standard as well. So yeah, it’s his kids. One example is like, you know, it’s perfectly possible now to, um, to manufacture never, Mmm. Artificially, um, or from recycle spouts of leather. Um, and to make that feel like Northern smell like, um, isn’t never, um, but if you speak to the luxury auto companies, again, there’s no way that we can sell a car at the post 0.1 to sell a car if we don’t real genuine hide into that automobile.
Assheton Carter (33:39):
Um, because our customers went to expect accepted. So there’s a, so there’s a bit of a, you know, there’s got to be education, you know, there’s got to be educational. There’s got to be some trigger. It says, you know, perhaps it’s okay to have a different type of quality of that from that, which I’m used to. And it can still be just as enjoyable, but also please less pressure on and they plan it and Mmm. And peep on people. Yeah. Interesting. Well, you, you mentioned earlier that you’re, uh, you are giving another talk right at the, at the conference or at the summit. So it makes me think, I wonder what, um, yeah, we’ve talked, we’ve talked to a lot of people who are, who are attending or contributing to this summit and I’m curious what value you see or you get or you recommend to people from, uh, AIAG.
Assheton Carter (34:40):
Yeah, I mean, in the end of the day, TDI sustainability is a problem solving agency. You know, um, the, the Valley we create hope clears through. Um, yeah, anticipating, understanding, responding, creating, um, solutions to the problems that businesses face so they can no hope to advance on the journey to, um, having a positive impact. So the fifth, this conference really gives us an opportunity to listen and I mean, really listen to what it is that, um, our clients and prospective clients, um, what problems they’re facing and also to, yeah, brainstorm a little bit, go back and forth on some of the ideas that we’ve been having, how we can, and I push this forward, push this mission, this, this, this agenda forward, um, in a way that allows for the increase, the, the, the continued profitability, those companies while demonstrating how they’re,
Scott Luton (35:39):
okay. Yeah. We’re certainly big fans. We we’ve enjoyed collaborating with, with uh, Jim and Tanya and AIG team in a number of different ways over the last, uh, on the going back probably the summer 2019 and looking forward to, uh, all the programming as part of the CSR summit, uh, coming up really soon here. So, um, Ashton, we want to make sure, uh, I am positive that we’re going to have folks in our audience and our listenership that want to reach out and compare notes with you and learn more about TDI, TDI sustainability. Um, how can folks reach out to you and how can folks also learn more about your firm? That was great. Yeah. Thanks Leo. Entity,
Assheton Carter (36:25):
probably the best way is through, um, my LinkedIn and that’s, um, Ashlyn Carter is my LinkedIn name. Um, so kind of rolled out and also adults ways. It’s a double S H O N coffee. I’m all straight to a website and the URL, which is TDI strategies.com.
Scott Luton (36:44):
Perfect. Perfect. That’s simple. Yep. Um, well, really have enjoyed it. It’s tough to, uh, do justice to these really big picture meaningful ideas and in less than an hour that we’ll have to reconnect with you again soon here. Ashlynn really appreciate your thought leadership expertise and your passion around not just sustainability but, but really, um, social responsibility that is so fortunately so, um, it seems to be more prevalent now than, than in years past. And that’s, that’s a good thing. Greg, your take. Um, I’m glad we’re having this discussion. You know, we talk a lot about sustainability. One of the things we need to talk about more is F ethicality in supply chain, right? Yeah. Mmm. And I think, you know, the, there’s no, there’s no reason to continue to sustain these old methods and some of these so ridiculous child labor and slave, even slavery and things like that.
Scott Luton (37:43):
And um, you know, that’s virtually unfathomable and frankly, um, unknown by so many people in the world, which is about the only reason that it exists. And I see, I see companies and advocates, as you mentioned before, Ashton, I see advocates and activists starting to go more directly to the people rather than even to the government agencies to drive this kind of change. And I think that’s a, that’s a really good thing to see and that will probably accelerate change. Great point there Greg. Well, thanks again Ashton Carter, PhD CEO at TDI sustainability. Really appreciate your time and look forward to reconnecting with you at the event pretty much and I’m very much looking forward to it. All right, so to our listeners, uh, be sure to check that mean to cut you off there. Greg, I know you had a comment. Thank you. Easy enough. Um, to our listeners, be sure to check out a wide variety of industry thought firstname.lastname@example.org find us and subscribe wherever you get your podcasts from. On behalf of the entire team here, Greg Wyatt, Scott Luton, Amanda Clay, Kelly, Michelle, you name it. We wish you a successful week ahead. Stay safe, don’t panic. Please though. Follow the expert advice and precautions that have been distributed. And know this, that brighter days. Lie ahead. So we’re going to see next time here on spot.
Dr. Assheton Stewart Carter is a business sustainability expert, a social entrepreneur and a responsible investment advisor. For the last 25 years he has focused on helping businesses create value that benefits their shareholders, communities and wider society. He began his career in London’s financial markets, first as a wealth manager serving high net worth clients, and then as an asset manager at the broker Hoare Govett. He is the CEO and Founder of TDI Sustainability, a global advisory firm established to support businesses – from artisanal mine to multinational corporations – in the natural resources, electronics, automotive, luxury and investment industries develop sustainably. The team use their expertise to build and audit responsible supply chains that work for people, for business and for the planet. Assheton has extensive experience in structuring innovative green supply chains. He built the first ethical gold and diamond supply chain to jewellers in the USA, and developed the world’s first tracking system for conflict-free metals sourced from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), a system which continues to be used by electronics manufacturers in Europe to this day. Assheton chairs boards and expert panels for standard-setting organisations, NGOs and private companies worldwide. He lectures at leading international universities such as Georgetown University, Washington D.C.; Cornell University, New York; the University of Warwick; the University of Oxford and the University of Cambridge. His opinions have featured in the Washington Post, the Financial Times, The Guardian, and The Economist. Assheton holds a first-class degree from the Royal Agricultural University and a PhD from the University of Bath.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Adrian Purtill serves as Business Development Manager at Vector Global Logistics, where he consults with importers and exporters in various industries to match their specific shipping requirements with the most effective supply chain solutions. Vector Global Logistics is an asset-free, multi-modal logistics company that provides exceptional sea freight, air freight, truck, rail, general logistic services and consulting for our clients. Our highly trained and professional team is committed to providing creative and effective solutions, always exceeding our customer’s expectations and fostering long-term relationships. With more than 20+ years of experience in both strategy consulting and logistics, Vector Global Logistics is your best choice to proactively minimize costs while having an exceptional service level.
Joshua is a student from Institute of Technology and Higher Education of Monterrey Campus Guadalajara in Communication and Digital Media. His experience ranges from Plug and Play México, DearDoc, and Nissan México creating unique social media marketing campaigns and graphics design. Joshua helps to amplify the voice of supply chain here at Supply Chain Now by assisting in graphic design, content creation, asset logistics, and more. In his free time he likes to read and write short stories as well as watch movies and television series.
Director of Communications and Executive Producer
Donna Krache is a former CNN executive producer who has won several awards in journalism and communication, including three Peabodys. She has 30 years’ experience in broadcast and digital journalism. She led the first production team at CNN to convert its show to a digital platform. She has authored many articles for CNN and other media outlets. She taught digital journalism at Georgia State University and Arizona State University. Krache holds a bachelor’s degree in government from the College of William and Mary and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from the University of New Orleans. She is a serious sports fan who loves the Braves. She is president of the Dave Krache Foundation. Named in honor of her late husband, this non-profit pays fees for kids who want to play sports but whose parents are facing economic challenges.
Vicki has a long history of rising to challenges and keeping things up and running. First, she supported her family’s multi-million dollar business as controller for 12 years, beginning at the age of 17. Then, she worked as an office manager and controller for a wholesale food broker. But her biggest feat? Serving as the chief executive officer of her household, while her entrepreneur husband travelled the world extensively. She fed, nurtured, chaperoned, and chauffeured three daughters all while running a newsletter publishing business and remaining active in her community as a Stephen’s Minister, Sunday school teacher, school volunteer, licensed realtor and POA Board president (a title she holds to this day). A force to be reckoned with in the office, you might think twice before you meet Vicki on the tennis court! When she’s not keeping the books balanced at Supply Chain Now or playing tennis matches, you can find Vicki spending time with her husband Greg, her 4 fur babies, gardening, cleaning (yes, she loves to clean!) and learning new things.
Founder, CEO, & Host
As the founder and CEO of Supply Chain Now, you might say Scott is the voice of supply chain – but he’s too much of a team player to ever claim such a title. One thing’s for sure: he’s a tried and true supply chain expert. With over 15 years of experience in the end-to-end supply chain, Scott’s insights have appeared in major publications including The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and CNN. He has also been named a top industry influencer by Thinkers360, ISCEA and more.
From 2009-2011, Scott was president of APICS Atlanta, and he continues to lead initiatives that support both the local business community and global industry. A United States Air Force Veteran, Scott has also regularly led efforts to give back to his fellow veteran community since his departure from active duty in 2002.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Allison Krache Giddens has been with Win-Tech, a veteran-owned small business and aerospace precision machine shop, for 15 years, recently buying the company from her mentor and Win-Tech’s Founder, Dennis Winslow. She and her business partner, John Hudson now serve as Co-Presidents, leading the 33-year old company through the pandemic.
She holds undergraduate degrees in psychology and criminal justice from the University of Georgia, a Masters in Conflict Management from Kennesaw State University, a Masters in Manufacturing from Georgia Institute of Technology, and a Certificate of Finance from the University of Georgia. She also holds certificates in Google Analytics, event planning, and Cybersecurity Risk Management from Harvard online. Allison founded the Georgia Chapter of Women in Manufacturing and currently serves as Treasurer. She serves on the Chattahoochee Technical College Foundation Board as its Secretary, the liveSAFE Resources Board of Directors as Resource Development Co-Chair, and on the Leadership Cobb Alumni Association Board as Membership Chair and is also a member of Cobb Executive Women. She is on the Board for the Cobb Chamber of Commerce’s Northwest Area Councils. Allison runs The Dave Krache Foundation, a non-profit that helps pay sports fees for local kids in need.
Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain Now and TECHquila Sunrise
When rapid-growth technology companies, venture capital and private equity firms are looking for advisory, they call Greg – a founder, board director, advisor and catalyst of disruptive B2B technology and supply chain. An insightful visionary, Greg guides founders, investors and leadership teams in creating breakthroughs to gain market exposure and momentum – increasing overall company esteem and valuation.
Greg is a founder himself, creating Blue Ridge Solutions, a Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader in cloud-native supply chain applications, and bringing to market Curo, a field service management solution. He has also held leadership roles with Servigistics (PTC) and E3 Corporation (JDA/Blue Yonder). As a principal and host at Supply Chain Now, Greg helps guide the company’s strategic direction, hosts industry leader discussions, community livestreams, and all in addition to executive producing and hosting his original YouTube channel and podcast, TEChquila Sunrise.
Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain is Boring
Talk about world-class: Chris is one of the few professionals in the world to hold CPIM-F, CLTD-F and CSCP-F designations from ASCM/APICS. He’s also the APICS coach – and our resident Supply Chain Doctor. When he’s not hosting programs with Supply Chain Now, he’s sharing supply chain knowledge on the APICS Coach Youtube channel or serving as a professional education instructor for the Georgia Tech Supply Chain & Logistic Institute’s Supply Chain Management (SCM) program and University of Tennessee-Chattanooga Center for Professional Education courses.
Chris earned a BS in Industrial Engineering from Bradley University, an MBA with emphasis in Industrial Psychology from the University of West Florida, and is a Doctoral in Supply Chain Management candidate.
Host of TEKTOK
If there’s one Supply Chain ‘Pro to Know,’ it’s Karin. She’s earned the title for three years and counting – culminating in her designation as the “2020 Supply Chain Pro to Know of the Year.” Karin is also an award-winning digital supply chain, business strategy and technology marketing executive. A sought-after speaker at industry conferences, you will find her quoted in a variety of supply chain publications – and active in forums like ASCM/APICS and CSCMP.
With more than 25 years of supply chain experience, Karin spearheaded strategy and marketing for Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader and IDC MarketScape Leader, Logility. Karin has the heart of a teacher and has helped nearly 1,000 customers transform their businesses and tell their success stories. Today, she is a sought-after advisor helping high-growth B2B technology companies with everything from defining their unique value propositions to introducing new products and capturing customer success. No matter their goals, she makes sure her clients have actionable marketing strategies that help grow global revenue, market share and profitability.
Host of Digital Transformers
Kevin L. Jackson is a globally recognized Thought Leader, Industry Influencer and Founder/Author of the award winning “Cloud Musings” blog. He has also been recognized as a “Top 5G Influencer” (Onalytica 2019, Radar 2020), a “Top 50 Global Digital Transformation Thought Leader” (Thinkers 360 2019) and provides strategic consulting and integrated social media services to AT&T, Intel, Broadcom, Ericsson and other leading companies. Mr. Jackson’s commercial experience includes Vice President J.P. Morgan Chase, Worldwide Sales Executive for IBM and SAIC (Engility) Director Cloud Solutions. He has served on teams that have supported digital transformation projects for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the US Intelligence Community. Kevin’s formal education includes a MS Computer Engineering from Naval Postgraduate School; MA National Security & Strategic Studies from Naval War College; and a BS Aerospace Engineering from the United States Naval Academy. Internationally recognizable firms that have sponsored articles authored by him include Cisco, Microsoft, Citrix and IBM. Books include “Click to Transform” (Leaders Press, 2020), “Architecting Cloud Computing Solutions” (Packt, 2018), and “Practical Cloud Security: A Cross Industry View” (Taylor & Francis, 2016). He also delivers online training through Tulane University, O’Reilly Media, LinkedIn Learning, and Pluralsight. Mr. Jackson retired from the U.S. Navy in 1994, earning specialties in Space Systems Engineering, Carrier Onboard Delivery Logistics and carrier-based Airborne Early Warning and Control. While active, he also served with the National Reconnaissance Office, Operational Support Office, providing tactical support to Navy and Marine Corps forces worldwide.
Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español
Enrique serves as Managing Director at Vector Global Logistics and believes we all have a personal responsibility to change the world. He is hard working, relationship minded and pro-active. Enrique trusts that the key to logistics is having a good and responsible team that truly partners with the clients and does whatever is necessary to see them succeed. He is a proud sponsor of Vector’s unique results-based work environment and before venturing into logistics he worked for the Boston Consulting Group (BCG). During his time at BCG, he worked in different industries such as Telecommunications, Energy, Industrial Goods, Building Materials, and Private Banking. His main focus was always on the operations, sales, and supply chain processes, with case focus on, logistics, growth strategy, and cost reduction. Prior to joining BCG, Enrique worked for Grupo Vitro, a Mexican glass manufacturer, for five years holding different positions from sales and logistics manager to supply chain project leader in charge of five warehouses in Colombia.
He has an MBA from The Wharton School of Business and a BS, in Mechanical Engineer from the Technologico de Monterrey in Mexico. Enrique’s passions are soccer and the ocean, and he also enjoys traveling, getting to know new people, and spending time with his wife and two kids, Emma and Enrique.
Host of Dial P for Procurement
Kelly is the Owner and Managing Director of Buyers Meeting Point and MyPurchasingCenter. She has been in procurement since 2003, starting as a practitioner and then as the Associate Director of Consulting at Emptoris. She has covered procurement news, events, publications, solutions, trends, and relevant economics at Buyers Meeting Point since 2009. Kelly is also the General Manager at Art of Procurement and Business Survey Chair for the ISM-New York Report on Business. Kelly has her MBA from Babson College as well as an MS in Library and Information Science from Simmons College and she has co-authored three books: ‘Supply Market Intelligence for Procurement Professionals’, ‘Procurement at a Crossroads’, and ‘Finance Unleashed’.
Host, Veteran Voices
Mary Kate Soliva is a veteran of the US Army and cofounder of the Guam Human Rights Initiative. She is currently in the Doctor of Criminal Justice program at Saint Leo University. She is passionate about combating human trafficking and has spent the last decade conducting training for military personnel and the local community.
Jeff Miller is the host of Supply Chain Now’s Supply Chain is the Business. Jeff is a digital business transformation and supply chain advisor with deep expertise in Industry 4.0, ERP, PLM, SCM, IoT, AR and related technologies. Through more than 25 years of industry and consulting experience, he has worked with many of the world’s leading product and service companies to achieve their strategic business and supply chain goals, creating durable business value for organizations at the forefront of technology and business practices. Jeff is the managing director for North America at Transition Technologies PSC, a global solution integrator, and the founder and managing principal of BTV Advisors, a firm that helps companies secure business transformation value from digital supply chain technologies and their breakthrough capabilities.
Chief Marketing Officer
Amanda is a marketing veteran and entrepreneur with over 15 years of experience across a variety of industries and organizations including Von Maur, Anthropologie, AmericasMart Atlanta, and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. In 2016, Amanda founded and grew the Magnolia Marketing Group into a successful digital media firm, and now she develops modern marketing strategies, social campaigns, innovative operational processes, and implements creative content initiatives for Supply Chain Now. But that’s just the beginning of her supply chain impact. Amanda also served as the VP of Information Systems and Webmaster on the Board of Directors for APICS Savannah for several years, and is the face behind the scenes welcoming you to every Supply Chain Now livestream! She was also recently selected as one of the Top 100 Women in Supply Chain by Supply Chain Digest and IBM. When she’s not leading the Supply Chain Now marketing team, you can find Amanda with her and her husband Scott’s three kids, in the kitchen cooking, or reading.
Business Development Manager
Clay is passionate about two things: supply chain and the marketing that goes into it. Recently graduated with a degree in marketing at the University of Georgia, Clay got his start as a journalism major and inaugural member of the Owl’s football team at Kennesaw State University – but quickly saw tremendous opportunity in the Terry College of Business. He’s already putting his education to great use at Supply Chain Now, assisting with everything from sales and brand strategy to media production. Clay has contributed to initiatives such as our leap into video production, the guest blog series, and boosting social media presence, and after nearly two years in Supply Chain Now’s Marketing Department, Clay now heads up partnership and sales initiatives with the help of the rest of the Supply Chain Now sales team.
Trisha is new to the supply chain industry – but not to podcasting. She’s an experienced podcast manager and virtual assistant who also happens to have 20 years of experience as an elementary school teacher. It’s safe to say, she’s passionate about helping people, and she lives out that passion every day with the Supply Chain Now team, contributing to scheduling and podcast production.
Host of Dial P for Procurement
Billy Taylor is a Proven Business Excellence Practitioner and Leadership Guru with over 25 years leading operations for a Fortune 500 company, Goodyear. He is also the CEO of LinkedXL (Excellence), a Business Operating Systems Architecting Firm dedicated to implementing sustainable operating systems that drive sustainable results. Taylor’s achievements in the industry have made him a Next Generational Lean pacesetter with significant contributions.
An American business executive, Taylor has made a name for himself as an innovative and energetic industry professional with an indispensable passion for his craft of operational excellence. His journey started many years ago and has worked with renowned corporations such as The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. (GT) leading multi-site operations. With over 3 decades of service leading North America operations, he is experienced in a deeply rooted process driven approach in customer service, process integrity for sustainability.
A disciple of continuous improvement, Taylor’s love for people inspires commitment to helping others achieve their full potential. He is a dynamic speaker and hosts "The Winning Link," a popular podcast centered on business and leadership excellence with the #1 rated Supply Chain Now Network. As a leadership guru, Taylor has earned several invitations to universities, international conferences, global publications, and the U.S. Army to demonstrate how to achieve and sustain effective results through cultural acceptance and employee ownership. Leveraging the wisdom of his business acumen, strong influence as a speaker and podcaster Taylor is set to release "The Winning Link" book under McGraw Hill publishing in 2022. The book is a how-to manual to help readers understand the management of business interactions while teaching them how to Deine, Align, and Execute Winning in Business.
A servant leader, Taylor, was named by The National Diversity Council as one of the Top 100 Diversity Officers in the country in 2021. He features among Oklahoma's Most Admired CEOs and maintains key leadership roles with the Executive Advisory Board for The Shingo Institute "The Nobel Prize of Operations" and The Association of Manufacturing Excellence (AME); two world-leading organizations for operational excellence, business development, and cultural learning. He is also an Independent Director for the M-D Building Products Board, a proud American manufacturer of quality products since 1920.
Social Media Manager
My name is Chantel King and I am the Social Media Specialist at Supply Chain Now. My job is to make sure our audience is engaged and educated on the abundant amount of information the supply chain industry has to offer.
Social Media and Communications has been my niche ever since I graduated from college at The Academy of Art University in San Francisco. No, I am not a West Coast girl. I was born and raised in New Jersey, but my travel experience goes way beyond the garden state. My true passion is in creating editorial and graphic content that influences others to be great in whatever industry they are in. I’ve done this by working with lifestyle, financial, and editorial companies by providing resources to enhance their businesses.
Another passion of mine is trying new things. Whether it’s food, an activity, or a sport. I would like to say that I am an adventurous Taurus that never shies away from a new quest or challenge.
Lori is currently completing a degree in marketing with an emphasis in digital marketing at the University of Georgia. When she’s not supporting the marketing efforts at Supply Chain Now, you can find her at music festivals – or working toward her dream goal of a fashion career. Lori is involved in many extracurricular activities and appreciates all the learning experiences UGA has brought her.
Sales and Marketing Coordinator
Katherine is a marketing professional and MBA candidate who strives to unite her love of people with a passion for positive experiences. Having a diverse background, which includes nonprofit work with digital marketing and start-ups, she serves as a leader who helps people live their most creative lives by cultivating community, order, collaboration, and respect. With equal parts creativity and analytics, she brings a unique skill set which fosters refining, problem solving, and connecting organizations with their true vision. In her free time, you can usually find her looking for her cup of coffee, playing with her puppy Charlie, and dreaming of her next road trip.
Ben Harris is the Director of Supply Chain Ecosystem Expansion for the Metro Atlanta Chamber. Ben comes to the Metro Atlanta Chamber after serving as Senior Manager, Market Development for Manhattan Associates. There, Ben was responsible for developing Manhattan’s sales pipeline and overall Americas supply chain marketing strategy. Ben oversaw market positioning, messaging and campaign execution to build awareness and drive new pipeline growth. Prior to joining Manhattan, Ben spent four years with the Georgia Department of Economic Development’s Center of Innovation for Logistics where he played a key role in establishing the Center as a go-to industry resource for information, support, partnership building, and investment development. Additionally, he became a key SME for all logistics and supply chain-focused projects. Ben began his career at Page International, Inc. where he drove continuous improvement in complex global supply chain operations for a wide variety of businesses and Fortune 500 companies. An APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP), Ben holds an Executive Master’s degree in Business Administration (EMBA) and bachelor’s degree in International Business (BBA) from the Terry College at the University of Georgia.
Host, The Freight Insider
Prior to joining TeamOne Logistics, Page Siplon served as the Executive Director of the Georgia Center of Innovation for Logistics, the State’s leading consulting resource for fueling logistics industry growth and global competitiveness. For over a decade, he directly assisted hundreds of companies to overcome challenges and capitalize on opportunities related to the movement of freight. During this time, Siplon was also appointed to concurrently serve the State of Georgia as Director of the larger Centers of Innovation Program, in which he provided executive leadership and vision for all six strategic industry-focused Centers. As a frequently requested keynote speaker, Siplon is called upon to address a range of audiences on unique aspects of technology, workforce, and logistics. This often includes topics of global and domestic logistics trends, supply chain visibility, collaboration, and strategic planning. He has also been quoted as an industry expert in publications such as Forbes, Journal of Commerce, Fortune, NPR, Wall Street Journal, Reuters, American Express, DC Velocity, Area Development Magazine, Site Selection Magazine, Inbound Logistics, Modern Material Handling, and is frequently a live special guest on SiriusXM’s Road Dog Radio Show. Siplon is an active industry participant, recognized by DC Velocity Magazine as a “2012 Logistics Rainmaker” which annually identifies the top-ten logistics professionals in the Nation; and named a “Pro to Know” by Supply & Demand Executive Magazine in 2014. Siplon was also selected by Georgia Trend Magazine as one of the “Top 100 Most Influential Georgians” for 2013, 2014, and 2015. He also serves various industry leadership roles at both the State and Federal level. Governor Nathan Deal nominated Siplon to represent Georgia on a National Supply Chain Competitiveness Advisory Committee, where he was appointed to a two-year term by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce and was then appointed to serve as its vice-chairman. At the State level, he was selected by then-Governor Sonny Perdue to serve as lead consultant on the Commission for New Georgia’s Freight and Logistics Task Force. In this effort, Siplon led a Private Sector Advisory Committee with invited executives from a range of private sector stakeholders including UPS, Coca-Cola, The Home Depot, Delta Airlines, Georgia Pacific, CSX, and Norfolk Southern. Siplon honorably served a combined 12 years in the United States Marine Corps and the United States Air Force. During this time, he led the integration of encryption techniques and deployed cryptographic devices for tactically secure voice and data platforms in critical ground-to-air communication systems. This service included support for all branches of the Department of Defense, multiple federal security agencies, and aiding NASA with multiple Space Shuttle launches. Originally from New York, Siplon received both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in electrical and computer engineering with a focus on digital signal processing from the Georgia Institute of Technology. He earned an associate’s degree in advanced electronic systems from the Air Force College and completed multiple military leadership academies in both the Marines and Air Force. Siplon currently lives in Cumming, Georgia (north of Atlanta), with his wife Jan, and two children Thomas (19) and Lily (15).
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Kristi Porter is VP of Sales and Marketing at Vector Global Logistics, a company that is changing the world through supply chain. In her role, she oversees all marketing efforts and supports the sales team in doing what they do best. In addition to this role, she is the Chief Do-Gooder at Signify, which assists nonprofits and social impact companies through copywriting and marketing strategy consulting. She has almost 20 years of professional experience, and loves every opportunity to help people do more good.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Kevin Brown is the Director of Business Development for Vector Global Logistics. He has a dedicated interest in Major Account Management, Enterprise Sales, and Corporate Leadership. He offers 25 years of exceptional experience and superior performance in the sales of Logistics, Supply Chain, and Transportation Management. Kevin is a dynamic, high-impact, sales executive and corporate leader who has consistently exceeded corporate goals. He effectively coordinates multiple resources to solution sell large complex opportunities while focusing on corporate level contacts across the enterprise. His specialties include targeting and securing key accounts by analyzing customer’s current business processes and developing solutions to meet their corporate goals. Connect with Kevin on LinkedIn.
Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol
Sofia Rivas Herrera is a Mexican Industrial Engineer from Tecnologico de Monterrey class 2019. Upon graduation, she earned a scholarship to study MIT’s Graduate Certificate in Logistics and Supply Chain Management and graduated as one of the Top 3 performers of her class in 2020. She also has a multicultural background due to her international academic experiences at Singapore Management University and Kühne Logistics University in Hamburg. Sofia self-identifies as a Supply Chain enthusiast & ambassador sharing her passion for the field in her daily life.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Jose Manuel Irarrazaval es parte del equipo de Vector Global Logistics Chile. José Manuel es un gerente experimentado con experiencia en finanzas corporativas, fusiones y adquisiciones, financiamiento y reestructuración, inversión directa y financiera, tanto en Chile como en el exterior. José Manuel tiene su MBA de la Universidad de Pennsylvania- The Wharton School. Conéctese con Jose Manuel en LinkedIn.
Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol
Demo Perez started his career in 1997 in the industry by chance when a relative asked him for help for two just weeks putting together an operation for FedEx Express at the Colon Free Zone, an area where he was never been but accepted the challenge. Worked in all roles possible from a truck driver to currier to a sales representative, helped the brand introduction, market share growth and recognition in the Colon Free Zone, at the end of 1999 had the chance to meet and have a chat with Fred Smith ( FedEx CEO), joined another company in 2018 who took over the FedEx operations as Operations and sales manager, in 2004 accepted the challenge from his company to leave the FedEx operations and business to take over the operation and business of DHL Express, his major competitor and rival so couldn’t say no, by changing completely its operation model in the Free Zone. In 2005 started his first entrepreneurial journey by quitting his job and joining two friends to start a Freight Forwarding company. After 8 months was recruited back by his company LSP with the General Manager role with the challenge of growing the company and make it fully capable warehousing 3PL. By 2009 joined CSCMP and WERC and started his journey of learning and growing his international network and high-level learning. In 2012 for the first time joined a local association ( the Panama Maritime Chamber) and worked in the country’s first Logistics Strategy plan, joined and lead other associations ending as president of the Panama Logistics Council in 2017. By finishing his professional mission at LSP with a company that was 8 times the size it was when accepted the role as GM with so many jobs generated and several young professionals coached, having great financial results, took the decision to move forward and start his own business from scratch by the end of 2019. with a friend and colleague co-founded IPL Group a company that started as a boutique 3PL and now is gearing up for the post-Covid era by moving to the big leagues.
Host, Supply Chain Now
The founder of Logistics Executive Group, Kim Winter delivers 40 years of executive leadership experience spanning Executive Search & Recruitment, Leadership Development, Executive Coaching, Corporate Advisory, Motivational Speaking, Trade Facilitation and across the Supply Chain, Logistics, 3PL, E-commerce, Life Science, Cold Chain, FMCG, Retail, Maritime, Defence, Aviation, Resources, and Industrial sectors. Operating from the company’s global offices, he is a regular contributor of thought leadership to industry and media, is a professional Master of Ceremonies, and is frequently invited to chair international events.
He is a Board member of over a dozen companies throughout APAC, India, and the Middle East, a New Zealand citizen, he holds formal resident status in Australia and the UAE, and is the Australia & New Zealand representative for the UAE Government-owned Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA), the Middle East’s largest Economic Free Zone.
A triathlete and ex-professional rugby player, Kim is a qualified (IECL Sydney) executive coach and the Founder / Chairman of the successful not for profit humanitarian organization, Oasis Africa (www. oasisafrica.org.au), which has provided freedom from poverty through education to over 8000 mainly orphaned children in East Africa’s slums. Kim holds an MBA and BA from Massey & Victoria Universities (NZ).
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Nick Roemer has had a very diverse and extensive career within design and sales over the last 15 years stretching from China, Dubai, Germany, Holland, UK, and the USA. In the last 5 years, Nick has developed a hawk's eye for sustainable tech and the human-centric marketing and sales procedures that come with it. With his far-reaching and strong network within the logistics industry, Nick has been able to open new avenues and routes to market within major industries in the USA and the UAE. Nick lives by the ethos, “Give more than you take." His professional mission is to make the logistics industry leaner, cleaner and greener.
Sales Support Intern
Alex is pursuing a Marketing degree and a Certificate in Legal Studies at the University of Georgia. As a dual citizen of both the US and UK; Alex has studied abroad at University College London and is passionate about travel and international business. Through her coursework at the Terry College of Business, Alex has gained valuable skills in digital marketing, analytics, and professional selling. She joined Supply Chain Now as a Sales Support Intern where she assists the team by prospecting and qualifying new business partners.