Supply Chain Now
Episode 488

Episode Summary

“One thing we know from being in the industry for so long, is that when adversity hits the economy, when adversity hits our country, people typically turn to two things: music and alcohol.”

Phil Rich, SVP & CSCO at Sweetwater


Sweetwater is the largest online retailer of musical instruments in the United States. Despite the fact that they are online, their business is a highly personal one. People tend to have very strong feelings about their musical instruments and supporting technology. Part of what has made Sweetwater successful is their ability to form strong relationships with customers that they will never meet face to face.

Phil Rich is an SVP and the Chief Supply Chain Officer at Sweetwater – and he played guitar for the Navy band for six years, so he understands the perspective of their customers. They opened a new distribution center to support their corporate growth in February of 2020 – just in time to shut it down and send everyone home. Despite the challenges they have faced, Phil and his team are ramping up for their busy holiday season, and they are doing it by working together.

In this conversation, Phil shares his perspective with Supply Chain Now Co-hosts Greg White and Scott Luton:

· How to guarantee a quality customer experience when the customer is not working through your storefront, they are opening a box to find your product

· The power of being a customer of the company you work for

· Why executive leaders and upper management need to understand the work being done at every level of the organization well enough to train new employees

Episode Transcript

Intro/Outro (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 (00:35):

Hey, good afternoon, Scott Luton and Greg white with you here on supply chain. Now, welcome to today’s episode, Greg, how are you doing? I’m stoked. I’m so excited, but soda, I can’t tell you everything I’m talking to everyone on right now came from this place. So I’m not going to give it up. Yeah, please. Don’t yeah, you’re still in. You do it. So we’re we’re we are excited. We’re talking with a business leader from the world’s leading music technology and instrument retailer, as Greg said, one of his favorite company. So this is going to be really neat to kind of connect the dots and find out for the first time here in supply chain. Now the backstory, especially from a supply chain and, and business standpoint. So Greg, we’re gonna be working really hard to increase our listener supply chain Accu today, right? Undoubtedly supply chain and merchandising IQ.

Scott Luton (01:25):

Apparently. Absolutely. Teaser there. Hey, more to come on that in just a moment quick programming that if you enjoyed this episode, be sure to look up supply chain. Now, wherever you get your podcasts from subscribe. So you don’t miss a single thing, including conversations like this. As we welcome in mr. Phil, rich chief supply chain, officer and chief merchandising officer, both at Sweetwater field. Good afternoon. Great to be here. Thanks for having me, Scott and Greg. It’s a pleasure. Yeah. Thanks for joining us. We’re pretty excited too. I had to break in because we were enjoying the pre-show conversation as much as we were, and we can get to work and, and captured this for our listeners. Right? Yep. So, all right. So before we talk Sweetwater and talk about even your professional during, let’s get to know you a little better feel. So tell us, where did you grow up and, and let’s get an anecdote or two from your upbringing.

Scott Luton (02:17):

All right. I grew up in a sort of half and half, half an East Tennessee, and, uh, in the Tri-Cities area, a little town called Elizabethton, you know, just the plain, a little, a little town, all peaceful and quiet grew up at the, uh, at the end of the runway there at the local airport where my dad worked, the other half of my childhood was out in Phoenix. Arizona went to middle school, high school out there, loved, loved the town, really enjoyed it there as well. So I got a good blend of sort of East and West. Yeah, no doubt. Love it. A couple of quick up questions. What’d your dad do at the airport? So he taught avionics there, there was a flight school there. He taught avionics. And one of the fun things about observing

Phil Rich (03:00):

Him and his, his job there was, you know, when you talked about creativity at work and, and finding solutions and having a good time doing it the way he would get to work was fun. He would just, he would just throw his bike over the back fence and walk it up the Hill a little bit and just ride down the runway in the mornings. And I thought, you know, if you can have fun and get to work and it’s all safe and good, that’s kind of a, that’s kind of a cool solution. And I bet, I bet a lot of kids haven’t seen their dad leaving for work, dropping a bike over the weekend.

Scott Luton (03:33):

Alright. So before we kind of transitioned over to your professional journey, let’s talk one critical subject and that’s food growing up in East Tennessee. And then also in Phoenix, Arizona, you know, growing up and to start with Tennessee, barbecue is the first thing that comes to my mind, but maybe something else what’d you love

Phil Rich (03:51):

Growing up. We had a big garden there growing our own corn and strawberries and, and potatoes and stuff. And just, just kind of growing a lot of your own food and fruits and vegetables. And as a family, you know, shucking peas and do all that stuff. That, that was just a good time. And so it was really just home cooking was what I grew up on and enjoyed. And you moved to Phoenix and nothing would grow there. So, all right,

Scott Luton (04:19):

We’re talking, uh, declare audience in there. We were talking just how hot it can be in Phoenix and Phil. It was, he, it reminded him when he went back, I think later in life, just how hot and smothering it is. All right. So let’s talk your professional journey feel, let’s get it and get the, you know, prior to your current role, uh, which is we’re going to dive into here momentarily, give us a snapshot of your professional journey, especially any roles that really shaped your

Phil Rich (04:44):

Worldview. There was a time back in the early two thousands where I was director of training and sales for a competitor of Sweetwater, uh, nationwide. And so I had a couple of dozen people around the country. I’d visited pretty much every city in the U S met every kind of culture and, and got to train those people, try to train those people, get their feedback, and learn about who they were. I would say before that I was in the Navy for eight years, been around the world, was stationed on an aircraft carrier. You talk about a diverse workforce. Uh, I’ve seen some of your previous podcasts and you talk about that diversity in the military, and it’s incredible. And back in the early eighties, a lot of, uh, folks from other countries were encouraged to join the U S military. So a lot of just fantastic cultural experience there for me.

Scott Luton (05:36):

I love that. I think we all could benefit Greg from the experience that Phil just, just shared and in each of those different roles, you know, finding ways a bridge of bridging the communities and just getting the mission done, you know, that that’s been one of the, my favorite dynamics about global supply chain is despite the cultures and the differences and, and background differences, all that you can put aside, respect, put aside, but just get stuff done. And it creates really strong relationships along the way.

Greg White (06:08):

Hey, Greg, we’ve said this before, when you’re in a foxhole with somebody, right. It doesn’t matter where they’re from or what they look like. You’re saving one another. Right. It’s I mean, you’re reduced to the core of your humanity, right. And I think if people just experienced other people that way more or thought about it, that way more, it would be so much easier just to get together,

Scott Luton (06:32):

Be a better place. For sure. Yeah. So Phil, uh, one quick follow up question before Greg Greg’s licking his chops, he’s looking forward to diving into Sweetwater. Um, but let’s, you know, from those experiences you just described, I bet you can write a couple books, but you know, when you think of that proverbial Eureka moment, what’s one of your favorite Eureka moments that come to mind?

Phil Rich (06:52):

I think one of my favorites is from a mentor. I had probably 15 years ago, who I I’m still in touch with this day. And I would ask him questions about why things were the way they were like, why is this, you know, when you’re a hot, hot headed younger guy, right? You’re like, why is it this way? Come on and explain this to me. The Eureka moment was picking up the phone and going through person after person to find my way to the person that was the source of that who actually made the decision, who decided to do things, the, whatever the thing was to do with that way and to ask them why they did it. And so that developed in me, just an incredible curiosity, which is one thing I really look for in hiring people and looking for team members is just, if they just have an incredible curiosity, they can overcome a lot of things. They either don’t know they need to learn or are challenges presented to them by getting down to the source, I’m learning why things are and so that they can figure out what’s the best solution. And that was probably the best Eureka moment ever for me

Greg White (07:59):

First to understand. Right. All right. So I have a really important question for you. You are basically a walking you’re, you’re a walking bucket list, so you’re a pilot, correct. And, and a guitar player, former Navy vet, you played in the band, a band in the Navy as well.

Phil Rich (08:18):

Absolutely. Yeah, I was, I was a guitar player for the Navy band for six years. Yeah.

Greg White (08:22):

And, and when, when we started, when we started the pre-show conversation, I noticed a guitar in the background, which I don’t see right now. So I’m guessing that it’s in your hands. There it is. Eric Johnson fender Strat. So what I’d like to ask is probably the most important question we will answer today. And that is, can you lay down some of your favorite licks for us?

Phil Rich (08:46):

Oh yeah. We can play a little, you know, [inaudible] Turn it up. All right. That’s the East Tennessee aversion. That’s the East Tennessee lick. All right. Anything else you want us to hear? Oh, you know, there’s always like the classic bar tunes. Like

Speaker 5 (09:21):


Phil Rich (09:23):

You are clearly a heck of a lot of fun at a party. So can I just, can I just insert the proverbial? Wow. I mean, feeling just to do that, just like you’re tying your shoes and, and for it to sound just like that. I mean, Holy cow film. Oh, thanks. I’m talent. All right. Great. So first of all, I’d like you to carry just one message. And that is to my favorite. Now probably you’d have to break it to him. Second favorite person that Sweetwater Ian Ruggles, who is the rep that I worked with to coordinate all of this and frequently hear from which we’ll talk about in a little bit. Also let him know that we talked and, and, and I appreciate all of his help, but tell us about what Sweetwater does if there’s anyone out there that doesn’t know. And there probably aren’t a lot outside of the music business, but tell us about Sweetwater and what they do.

Phil Rich (10:16):

Well, the broad stroke is Sweetwater is the largest online retailer of musical instruments in the United States. And the definition of musical instruments for us is, is things like this. You have any drum sets and keyboards, all the gear you’re using. So microphones and interfaces, drum sets all that kind of good stuff. And that is what we sell. Now, what we do is not what is not what we sell. What we do is we connect with customers. When you talk about Ian Rowvilles, his, his title is sales engineer and what he and the other 495 sales engineers we have did is when we hire those folks, we put them through three months of classroom training that they have to pass to get to a desk and a phone so they can start selling. And those three months are spent talking about our Sweetwater culture. We’re talking about all the technical aspects of everything that we sell, how to connect with people, the seven habits, all these kinds of things, to set them up for success, to develop a relationship, to really care about customers and try to solve their problems.

Phil Rich (11:22):

And that’s really what we want to do. And along with that, we offer all kinds of other services, like a free tech support, where a repair center, where all kinds of things that differentiate us from everybody else in the industry. And I could just go on and on for a long time about what makes us special, but it’s really those guys on the phone, talking to customers, having that relationship. That’s what makes us special. I want you to know Phil that I’ve had a couple of tech companies in rod Doherty, who is also a fantastic guitar player and keyboard player

Greg White (11:54):

Introduced me to sweet Sweetwater because he was my not only my chief product officer at our tech company, but he was also my chief customer support critic, impossible, utterly impossible to get the site slightest flaw in customer support past. And he just raved about Sweetwater, which is what brought me there. And I understand that that’s pretty common. So in a second, I wanna talk about that, that how you got there, but before you do, first of all, congratulations, and we’re going to talk a little bit more about customer experience as part of this, but tell people what your role is. I think it’s fascinating having sat kind of in both seats that you have as well, but I don’t know how you live with yourself. So tell us everyone about what both of your roles are at Sweetwater.

Phil Rich (12:45):

All right. So I’ve been here a little over nine years, and originally I came to Sweetwater to be head of merchandising. So for really, for the first eight plus years, that’s what I’ve been doing is developing that team, the buying team planning and forecasting, et cetera, and, and growing that. And then in the last six months or so, that’s where the chief supply chain officers come into play. We opened our new distribution center in February. Talk about timing and February 17. And in March, you know, we sent everybody home for a couple of weeks and a lot of us dove into those processes out there, um, from, you know, receiving put-away conveyable, whatever, you know, all the things that go on in a DC. And I just fell in love with it and spent all my time back there. Fortunately, I have a fantastic guy to watch over merchandising while I was out there. And, uh, so it’s everything from, uh, onboarding new vendors, vendor, relationships, contracts, all that usual stuff. You’re, you’re probably used to granting a lot and then it’s everything down to the pack station and the Packers. And what’s the quality of the experience when the customer opens the box, you know, how are we treating each individual kind of product and what’s appropriate for the environment for the customer, et cetera, and how do we become more efficient? So it’s a lot of basic stuff, but you know, but hard to execute sometimes on a big scale.

Greg White (14:10):

I mean, it is everything Scott that we talk about all the time. It is everything from selecting. And in some cases, I don’t know if you all do this Phil, but sometimes helping suppliers, design products or adapt products to what the customer base wants all the way from that. What, what is Sweetwater going to sell to, how are they going to get it from their vendors? And then how are they going to get it to the consumers? So it’s, it’s a mixture of art and science, which we’ve talked about before on this show. So it’s a really interesting perspective. Hey, just curious, uh, the new DC we’re, we’re Joel,

Phil Rich (14:47):

It’s about two thirds of a mile across a long parking lot from here. So, you know, sometimes I feel like I should submit expense reports for mileage between the two, because I’m going back and forth, but you get your steps in, you get

Greg White (15:00):

It from your father, Phil get a bike.

Phil Rich (15:04):

Well, it wasn’t 42 degrees man on that bike. Uh, yeah, it’s, it’s, it’s on our property here. We own over a hundred acres here. It’s on the property, it’s 300,000 square foot plus, uh, we just opened another 50,000 that we got occupancy of just two weeks ago. So we’re moving quickly, uh, preparing for, you know, peak season and, and enjoying it. Yeah.

Greg White (15:25):

Did you have a different distribution center on that property or was it elsewhere or what

Phil Rich (15:30):

We did? We had, we actually had about 90,000 square feet here attached to the building that I’m in right here. And with our Salesforce here, our warehouse, our repair center, everything is right here in one place. Boy, that the, the ability to work together as a team is tremendous.

Greg White (15:47):

I gotta ask you this, uh, considering your role dual role, where do you now, or where do you expect you might, when your role kind of settles out, where do you think you will spend your time, or where have you enjoyed spending your time as you kind of balance both of these worlds, the art and the science.

Phil Rich (16:04):

I enjoy all the time that I spend in both places. It’s, it’s really fun. We have a bit of a newer senior staff and the DC. So I spend a lot more time with them. Uh, since it is a detached building, they get a little bit less of the immediate culture of Sweetwater. So when you talk about who we are and why we make decisions, you know, the Sweetwater difference, taking care of customers, that’s something I want to continually put in their minds and continually every decision we make out there, just go back to those fundamentals so that both buildings have a, trying to have as much of a matching culture as possible. So I’d probably spend 70% of my time out there. And I’m 30% back here, you know, on helping onboard some of the bigger new vendors and things like that.

Greg White (16:51):

That’s exactly the opposite of what I would have expected. And what I think you would mostly see is getting out of the office 70% of the time. And that’s a really good approach because it is difficult when you have promote staff, even though it’s two thirds of a mile away to communicate all of that. So that’s a, that’s a great effort. Kudos on that. Let’s talk a little bit about this culture. So one of the big events I’ve heard about is actually a customer event, right? Where you invite customers and have kind of a big shindig there at the facility. You’re welcome to talk about that, but I have a feeling that stems from the general culture of the company. So I’d love to understand not only what you can tell us about this culture, but how did it originate and how do you, how do you continue it?

Phil Rich (17:36):

Well, we’re fortunate Chuck Surak the founder and president Sweetwater is here every day, working hard alongside of this, you know, and he’s been doing it for 41 years. He has an incredible drive for excellence and incredible drive for detail. And when you talk about me, you know, being a pilot, musician, whatever Chuck is, the helicopter pilot is an outstanding saxophone player. He’s in a working band, he’s got his own customers, still that call him from way back he’s way into it. And when we do that event, which is called gear Fest, that’s what you’re talking about. Deer Fest, where we have about 10 to 15,000 people on our campus and all the vendors that are here. And it’s really just like an enormous consumer trade show. He stands at the front door and greets them all, all day long. And that trickles down as a culture to all of us in what he does, what he says, and it’s now we have 1800 employees. So we all get it now and it’s, and we just have to keep it moving along.

Scott Luton (18:30):

One of the things that really communicates to me is a variety of things, but that authenticity behind the brand, you know, when, when this founder and senior leader is willing to not be put in an ivory tower, like a lot, let’s face it, a lot of these brand founders and they separate themselves from the, from the employees and the customers, but to be down there and, and roll up the sleeves and make it about the team members and about the consumers and, and look for those conversations and relationships, that authenticity is a beautiful thing to hear about. Yeah.

Phil Rich (19:02):

And we use a different word that I didn’t actually hear a lot before I came to Sweetwater. And that word is credibility. And you have to work far to gain that credibility with customers, by example. And you know, when I first came to work here and Chuck said, you know, the senior staff here, they all actually work for a living, right. And what that really translates to is we can actually go do the jobs of the people that work for us and help to teach them, mentor them, I think at most, every level. And that’s really an exciting thing. When you sit in your small executive group and you can talk at all those levels, cause you know, we’re all interacting with those levels.

Greg White (19:39):

That’s a really important thing. Look, you know, Scott, to your point, culture comes from the top, whether it’s intentional or it’s accidental, whatever the culture of the company is always comes from the chucks of the respective businesses. That’s an important commitment leaders need to make authenticity credibility. What ever you want to call it engagement. Clearly, rod as actually told me about walking through the gate at gear Fest and, and talking to Chuck on his way in. So it, it, it happens. I mean that’s, and it, and it really cements in the mind of someone who is virtually unpleasable in terms of customer support, which drove a lot of strength in customer support in our organization. But for him to be that excited, got me that excited and then to have experienced it, right. It’s one thing to have been told about it, even by somebody who is so discerning, but then to have experienced an inexperienced, the overperformance in clearly intentional overperformance of Ian and, and the rest of the team at Sweetwater. It’s just really impressive. And look, we’re talking about people who do what their customers do. Chuck’s got a band right here. He can empathize another key word, you know, with the people because he understands the joy and the frustration of being an abandoned, needing a product or whatever. So, well, let me ask

Scott Luton (21:02):

A question along those lines, because Phil is, you shared earlier, you spent six years in the U S Navy band. You might have played in other bands. I imagine given to your talent, do you ever think about your former band mates and their needs and their point of view as you sit in the chair at Sweetwater now

Phil Rich (21:20):

Absolutely. From the receiving dock to, you know, forecasting and planning out, making sure we have enough guitar strings in stock, you know, so that people can keep, keep playing and, and bring that joy into their lives. And, and one thing we know when just from being in the industry for so long, when diversity hits the economy, when diversity hits the culture of the, of our country, people typically turn to two things, music and alcohol, right. And so, and what a great mix yeah. And music has been. And, and in this case, I think cars is really benefiting automobile industry, but the music industry is so resilient and that word is popular right now. But the resiliency of the music industry is great because it’s so passionate, driven. People love it so much. And that is part of our management team here is, yeah, we have accountants that don’t play an instrument, but we have so many musicians here that just get it. And, and it just makes it work better.

Greg White (22:17):

Ironic that the accountants don’t play an instrument. It’s a very mathematical thing. Right. You being a musician, maybe you could have internal lessons for those that don’t play.

Phil Rich (22:27):

We actually, yeah. We actually have a music Academy on site 850 students a week. Wow.

Greg White (22:33):

That’s incredible. If I could do it at work, I’d probably play a lot better guitar. All right. Let’s go a little bit more broad here. So your perspective is fantastic. Clearly you get even the customer experience aspect of this along with merchandising, which is one of the keys to customer experience, you have to evaluate that. And of course, supply chain, which delivers on the customer experience in quite a literal way. So, and that’s just one of the big themes that we’ve been talking about over the last few weeks is customer experience. And I think we’ve expressed that you all are fantastic at it, but, or if something else, what kind of broader based topics are getting mind share from you right now.

Phil Rich (23:12):

Yeah, definitely logistics. If I can define that as a broader based topic, logistics, for sure. Uh, keeping tabs on Indonesia, Malaysia, Korea, Japan, China, Europe, on what factories are running. There’s been a surge in the products that you’re using on this podcast. So surgeon that that’s really been just a big focus for me. And I think for most of the industry is, is how much can we get produced? What’s the, what are the right things to produce? It’s a collaborative conversation between us and our vendors are giving back all the information they need to make the right things, giving them better forecast. And frankly like all these companies, like the one on whole year, I mean, everything that they’re making right now is selling. So the better that they can get the better data that we can give them the better forecasting we can give them. You know, it’s just, it’s just great for the industry. The sell through is amazing. So that’s really what I’m looking at.

Greg White (24:12):

People got time on their hands, man, might as well learn an instrument. I hate,

Scott Luton (24:15):

I want to keep this commerce, some different things I want to ask you about feel, but I know we’re limited on time. Is there anything now that you’re in the music business, so to speak, I mean, you know, being an artist that’s now in the business, is there anything that might surprise your average consumer about what, you know, the decisions you make or the topics that are challenging or, or what have you what’s what’s surprising about the business?

Phil Rich (24:41):

The outside folks would find surprising is how much the music industry, the products industry is filled with musicians that truly care about their products that care about how people experience the products. They would probably be a little surprised about how collaborative the industry is and how much vendors are reaching out to Sweetwater, Sweetwater, reaching out to vendors to make a better products for them. I think when you think about, you know, I don’t know, Samsung making refrigerators who knows what kind of processes they use and, and, and focus groups and whatnot, but we’re talking to customers, their feedback’s really gone directly straight back to the vendors. And I think that they would probably find that surprising. Yeah,

Scott Luton (25:27):

Greg, I’ve never stopped to think about that, but it makes a ton of sense. And I can, the word that comes to mind is synchronicity, right? And, and, and the vibes, the relationships that Phil was just alluding to, and you combine those two powerful forces together. No wonder the it’s fueling the success of ministry, Greg, what, what did you hear there?

Greg White (25:48):

Well, first of all, I’m a huge fan of S of synchronicity, great police album, um, and a great word and applies to this. But I think, you know, the thing that you have to recognize about music and why it is such a personal experience and why it is so important is because any music is an expression of yourself. I mean, you don’t express express yourself through your refrigerator, but, you know, to give you an example. So it’s really, really important in that feedback is so personal and so engaging. But yeah, what I think is surprising, well, I don’t know, I guess I can’t say surprising of you, Phil, but what I think is surprising is the incredibly enlightened awakening that this company has exhibits. I mean, I’ve said this before. I have said this before Phil on our shows is every single retailer needs to examine how all do retail

Scott Luton (26:44):

Online or, or in person. And they need to mimic it. You are the Nordstrom of the online world. And I would argue that you even exceed Nordstrom and that’s a tall order as I’m sure you’re aware. So I feel we’re breaking new ground. Greg rarely, rarely ever. I mean, this is, this is a breaking records here, but, you know, I think it is great for industry. You know, we can all as consumers, the three of us and our listeners can probably, when you, when you think of great deliberate, intentional customer service or experience, a shortlist of companies come to mind, and I think that’s really healthy because other companies that have, let’s say room to improve it, it sets a new bar. That’s kind of, yeah, well, you know, we’re con here at supply chain now, but Phil Lowe, I really appreciate the opportunity to kind of here, get the story behind the story at Sweetwater, especially given Greg’s personal connections to a great company.

Scott Luton (27:41):

So how can, how can our listeners learn more and connect with you in the suite? What an organization, when you can connect with me, anytime on LinkedIn, you can email Anytime. We’d be glad to hear from anybody. Awesome. It’s just that simple, Greg, you’ve got a special request. If I’m not mistaken. Yes, I would love it. If Phil, if you wouldn’t mind, we’ve just got a few a minute or two of stuff we need to do. Would you mind playing this out while we wrap this up? Well, you mentioned the police right out, right? Katie, do you want me to take that note, be sure to check out a wide variety of industry thought find us and subscribe wherever you get your podcasts from and on behalf of Scott Luton and the entire supply chain now team do good give forward and be the change that’s needed.

Would you rather watch the show in action?

Watch as Scott and Greg welcome Phil Rich to Supply Chain Now through our YouTube channel.

Featured Guests

Phil Rich is a 20+ year veteran of the music industry with an incredibly broad experience in retail sales, training, merchandising, purchasing, marketing, promotions, and strategic management. His primary responsibilities at Sweetwater include working with his team to determine what brands and products the company carries, and overall management of Sweetwater’s incredible inventory selection. Right out of high school, Phil served in the US Navy for 8 years including a year at sea aboard USS Midway during Desert Shield/Storm, and then later as a guitarist and live sound engineer for the Navy Band. Phil continues to play guitar professionally and performs regularly with several groups in the Fort Wayne area. He also has significant experience as an audio engineer and is a graduate of the University of Washington’s audio production program. Prior to joining Sweetwater in 2011, Phil spent 14 years working for Guitar Center as vice president of merchandising and in other roles including district sales manager and director of training. Growing up with his father in aviation, Phil’s love for flying led him to become an instrument-rated pilot. He volunteers regularly with the local EAA Young Eagles program, bringing the experience of flight to local youth. Connect with Phil on LinkedIn.


Greg White

Principal & Host

Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

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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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Mary Kate Love

VP, Marketing

Mary Kate Love is currently the VP of marketing at Supply Chain Now focused on brand strategy and audience + revenue growth. Mary Kate’s career is a testament to her versatility and innovative spirit: she has experience in start-ups, venture capital, and building innovation initiatives from the ground up: she previously helped lead the build-out of the Supply Chain Innovation Center at Georgia-Pacific and before that, MxD (Manufacturing times Digital): the Department of Defense’s digital manufacturing innovation center. Mary Kate has a passion for taking complicated ideas and turning them into reality: she was one of the first team members at MxD and the first team member at the Supply Chain Innovation Center at Georgia-Pacific.

Mary Kate dedicates her extra time to education and mentorship: she was one of the founding Board Members for Women Influence Chicago and led an initiative for a city-wide job shadow day for young women across Chicago tech companies and was previously on the Board of Directors at St. Laurence High School in Chicago, Young Irish Fellowship Board and the UN Committee for Women. Mary Kate is the founder of National Supply Chain Day and enjoys co-hosting podcasts at Supply Chain Now. Mary Kate is from the south side of Chicago, a mom of two baby boys, and an avid 16-inch softball player. She holds a BS in Political Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

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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


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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Ben Harris


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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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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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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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., 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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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Amanda Luton

Vice President, Production

Amanda is a production and marketing veteran and entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience across a variety of industries and organizations including Von Maur, Anthropologie, AmericasMart Atlanta, and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Amanda currently manages, produces, and develops modern digital content for Supply Chain Now and their clients. Amanda has previously served as the VP of Information Systems and Webmaster on the Board of Directors for APICS Savannah, and founded and managed her own successful digital marketing firm, Magnolia Marketing Group. When she’s not leading the Supply Chain Now production team, you can find Amanda in the kitchen, reading, listening to podcasts, or enjoying time with family.

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Constantine Limberakis


Constantine Limberakis is a thought leader in the area of procurement and supply management. He has over 20 years of international experience, playing strategic roles in a wide spectrum of organizations related to analyst advisory, consulting, product marketing, product development, and market research.Throughout his career, he's been passionate about engaging global business leaders and the broader analyst and technology community with strategic content, speaking engagements, podcasts, research, webinars, and industry articles.Constantine holds a BA in History from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and an MBA in Finance & Marketing / Masters in Public & International Affairs from the University of Pittsburgh.

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Mary Kate Soliva

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.

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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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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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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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Tyler Ward

Director of Sales

Tyler Ward serves as Supply Chain Now's Director of Sales. Born and raised in Mid-Atlantic, Tyler is a proud graduate of Shippensburg University where he earned his degree in Communications. After college, he made his way to the beautiful state of Oregon, where he now lives with his wife and daughter.

With over a decade of experience in sales, Tyler has a proven track record of exceeding targets and leading high-performing teams. He credits his success to his ability to communicate effectively with customers and team members alike, as well as his strategic thinking and problem-solving skills.

When he's not closing deals, you can find Tyler on the links or cheering on his favorite football and basketball teams. He also enjoys spending time with his family, playing pick-up basketball, and traveling back to Ocean City, Maryland, his favorite place!

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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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Greg White

Principal & CMO, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain Now and TECHquila Sunrise

When rapid-growth technology companies, venture capital and private equity firms are looking for advisory, they call Greg – a founder, board director, advisor and catalyst of disruptive B2B technology and supply chain. An insightful visionary, Greg guides founders, investors and leadership teams in creating breakthroughs to gain market exposure and momentum – increasing overall company esteem and valuation.

Greg is a founder himself, creating Blue Ridge Solutions, a Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader in cloud-native supply chain applications, and bringing to market Curo, a field service management solution. He has also held leadership roles with Servigistics (PTC) and E3 Corporation (JDA/Blue Yonder). As a principal and host at Supply Chain Now, Greg helps guide the company’s strategic direction, hosts industry leader discussions, community livestreams, and all in addition to executive producing and hosting his original YouTube channel and podcast, TEChquila Sunrise.

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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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