“I’m not just mixing up stuff in the lab, I’m doing things to give people hope and to encourage people and to have a great impact on the world. And so that’s what keeps me grounded.”
– Sherrika Sanders, PhD, Senior Technical Engineer for Manner Polymers
On Feb. 1, 2003, the space shuttle Columbia disintegrated as it returned to Earth, killing all seven astronauts on board. An investigation would later determine that a suitcase-sized piece of foam had dislodged during the initial launch and caused damage to the protective panels covering the shuttle’s left wing. When it came time for reentry, the six-to-ten-inch-diameter hole created by the foam allowed hot gases to enter the wing, ultimately leading to the destruction of the shuttle and tragic loss of life.
In the aftermath of the accident, Lockheed Martin was tasked with gathering as much debris as possible to better understand the cause and hopefully prevent it from ever happening again. At the time, Sherrika Sanders, PhD, was working for Sandia National Laboratories, a subsidiary of Lockheed Martin. She was tasked with developing chemical coatings that would be applied to NASA’s space shuttles to prevent them from catching on fire as they reentered the earth’s atmosphere, a responsibility she took to heart.
In this episode, Sherrika tells Supply Chain Now Co-hosts Greg White and Scott Luton about her journey as an engineer and her philosophy on leadership:
· Why leadership is a privilege and an opportunity to serve others, not a right or a pathway to greater individual gain
· The power of shared objectives; from the top level of an organization to the bottom, everyone has a critical role to play
· The myth that leadership gives you the ability to change things organizationally, when what it really does is force you to change yourself
Welcome to supply chain. Now the voice of global supply chain supply chain now focuses on the best in the business for our worldwide audience, the people, the technologies, the best practices, and today’s critical issues. The challenges and opportunities stay tuned to hear from those making global business happen right here on supply chain. Now,
Scott Luton (00:00:32):
Good afternoon, Scott Luton, Greg white with you here on supply chain. Now, Greg, welcome to today’s live stream. How are you doing? How about that countdown that is straight, uptown and no more nasty grams from Borat and Uzbekistan or whatever. So it wasn’t, wasn’t it the like the Azerbaijan soccer club or something like that, that claimed ownership of that. It was something like that. But now, uh, I guess Yani is, uh, sponsoring our countdown, uh, right. Or it and Yani the, uh, uh, that the landscape musician was that solemn music called? Sure. No. Okay. Um, music, I don’t know. Yeah. Uh, yeah. It’s that soothing landscape stuff that sometimes you hear in your dentist’s office, maybe. Oh yeah. Hey, we’ll, we’ll, we’ll look into that, but regardless folks, we’ve got a big show here today. We are so excited about our guest. Um, and first off before we kind of foreshadow that, uh, it’s important to note Greg, that we come, uh, we live stream every Monday and Thursday at 12 noon.
Scott Luton (00:01:40):
Eastern time Monday of course, is our supply chain buzz. We’re tackle the news and developments. Some of which you got to keep your finger on. The pulse of Thursdays is our Baskin Robin Robbins vibe, right? 31 flavors. And then some little bit of variety for everybody. Do you remember Baskin Robbins, Greg? Yeah. Aren’t they still around or? I’m not sure, but I think they’re owned by Dunkin donuts. The same company that owns Dunkin donuts. It seems like not far from our house is a Baskin Robbins, Dunkin donuts combo. I think you’re right. And 31 flavors Brestlers had 33 flavors and Oh, they had the one up. It was, it was the ice cream Wars, kind of like the Cola Wars in the eighties. We were at war in the eighties. Now we’ve got the chicken sandwich Wars, um, whatever, whatever works, I guess for folks. But we spend a lot of times a kid in basket Robbins and, and the pink dipper back up where we grew up. But, uh, and by the way, thank you Mr. Benjamin gold clang soundscapes. They are called.
Scott Luton (00:02:45):
So we’ll say, well, I’m not a huge, I’m not a huge follower of Yani would probably heresy well let’s so let’s do this. We’ve got an outstanding guest today. We’ve got Dr. Shear Cassandra who was recently named one of the top 50 influencers in the world in the advanced manufacturing supply chain and logistics space. And that’s just one of her many, uh, many cool things about her journey and all the big impact she’s made. So, and she’s a repeat guest. We’d loved having her own, uh, about 500 episodes ago. So it’s been too long, so, wow. Yeah. Can you believe that
Greg White (00:03:23):
It was before my time even, and that’s
Scott Luton (00:03:27):
Did anything happen pre Greg white? I wait. Y’all y’all are in for a treat with our guests today, so we’re going to get to a sheriff in just a second, but before we do Greg, we’ve got to do some work, right? Yep. So let’s, uh, want to share a couple of program notes as always, if you enjoyed today’s live stream, be sure to check us out wherever you get your podcasts from, uh, at supply chain. Now on our main channel, we dropped today was a replay of Monday’s manufacturing, Monday version of the supply chain buzz. And we had Billy Taylor join us. Billy was formerly a director of manufacturing and the chief diversity and inclusion officer with the Goodyear company. And Billy brought it on Monday. Didn’t he? Greg
Greg White (00:04:10):
Manufacturing week, I guess. And yes. Yeah. Um, I’m not sure how many t-shirts different types of t-shirts we’re having printed, but I mean, he really does make it so consumable doesn’t he absolutely an expert walks in. He can clearly walk into these facilities and almost analyze the problems by walking in the door. So an incredible skill, but also I love the way he just makes it so simple for those of us, not in the know
Scott Luton (00:04:36):
Stories and humor and all the knowledge. So you’ll check out that replay wherever you get your podcasts from a Tuesday earlier this week, we published stop talking act buildings, sustainable logistics initiatives. Tell us about this cool conversation here, Greg. Okay.
Greg White (00:04:51):
You’re stalling along the sustainability Viking from Norway. And if you, he, he doesn’t look like that picture right now. He has been growing his beard during COVID. So he looks like he ought to be on an episode of, of Vikings. So check him out by the way, because it’s also on YouTube, but, uh, DB Schenker, the company that he works for has an incredible, uh, sustainability initiative in Norway and Norway in and of itself has an incredible sustainability initiatives, not just regulations by the government. Then they do have some of those, but also just the people are so incredibly aware of sustainability. And as Peter says, in this episode, they live off the land. It’s an oil producing country. It is an agriculture country. Um, so they, and it’s a very, there’s a very relatively small area of the country where you can grow anything because the country goes inside the Arctic circle.
Greg White (00:05:50):
Wow. So, um, it’s a beautiful place. It’s one of my favorite countries offload contains my favorite restaurant in the world. And I am not telling anyone who it is, what it is, because I want it for myself selfish, but do listen to Peter because he gives you tips on how to ignite your own sustainability ignition initiative in your company, or to accelerate if you’ve already got an initiative and get things going because they have got it going. Right. Um, electric pedal pedal driven electric carts, bikes, uh, for last mile delivery in Oslow. So, so things like that are what they’re up to.
Scott Luton (00:06:29):
So check it out. Tequila, sunrise with a T E C H as in Greg’s name. Go ahead and wink. Go ahead. See what we did there. So finally, uh, we got to two more quick notes. Hey, check out this week in business history, Kelly Barner stepped in, did a masterful job. Do y’all remember Metallica ticket on Napster? I forgotten about this way back in the early internet days, Conda. Um, so check it out all in less than 20 minutes, she, she dives into some things that you’ve probably other things you’ve probably forgotten about. So check that out this week in business history, wherever you get your podcasts from. And finally, Kevin L. Jackson is leading this webinar on April 27th, uh, setting the standard for supply chain security, especially from an ICT standpoint, uh, information communications, technology, new acronym, new to me, uh, and he’s doing it in conjunction with a couple of companies, including the telecommunications industry association, which is really the voice of that industry. So check that out April 27th, you can learn more. I think we’ve got link in the show notes and you can, uh, learn email@example.com. Okay. So Greg, let’s say a couple of quick hellos of people, so we can start bring in our wonderful guests here today. Uh, we got Dave and with us good morning to you, Dave and hope I was alive. Peter of course is with us. Mervin Marie is with us. Hey Marie. Great to see you here today. Tell us where you’re, you’re tuned in from the Rainmaker
Greg White (00:08:03):
Brain Rainmaker. I like it.
Scott Luton (00:08:07):
Uh, but that perhaps I forgot your name wrong. I apologize, please correct me, but tell us where you’re tuned in from via LinkedIn. Uh, [inaudible] uh, is also tuned in via LinkedIn. Great to have you tell us where you’re from. Uh, Robert is with this. Uh, let’s see, here is a coy Greg hockey, hockey, hockey.
Greg White (00:08:29):
I don’t know. It’s been a long time,
Scott Luton (00:08:32):
So, well welcome. Hi. Hi is easy even mom. Maybe can’t mess it up, but Hey, tell us, make sure we get your name right. And tell us where you’re from. Great to have you here.
Greg White (00:08:43):
That’s Vietnam. I’m certain.
Scott Luton (00:08:45):
Yes. Rachel is with us, uh, from the Gulf coast. I bet the beautiful Gulf coast
Greg White (00:08:50):
Scott Luton (00:08:52):
Abhishek is back. I think he was with us, uh, earlier this week and last week from Chennai right tonight. Thank you. Uh, Tom Raftery, man. Tom, you’ve been on fire with the podcast here lately. I loved it. I enjoyed tuning in, uh, the stream, uh, talking cars last week. So hello from Seville Spain, right?
Greg White (00:09:11):
Yes. Correct. Simon Lou
Scott Luton (00:09:15):
After, after six months he says my open work banner is gone. Right?
Greg White (00:09:19):
Yeah. Tell us about it. Let’s know where you land.
Scott Luton (00:09:21):
Yeah. Tell us what’s going on. Uh, and finally LA lays with us from Sudan. I think she joined us a week or so ago and, and really dropped. I think she was with us when Sandra McQuillan was with us and she was sharing some, uh, local supply chain, uh, uh, uh, news. So great to have you back, uh, via LinkedIn. There are Facebook there. Okay. So with no further ado, Greg, are you ready? I am.
Greg White (00:09:46):
I’m ready. I mean, I’m telling some writing.
Scott Luton (00:09:50):
Wow. This was like Christmas. Not in to plate up too much. Uh Sherrick. As she’s in the green room, I’ve told you your ears will be burning as we talk about you. This is, this is really, it’s always neat to have repeat guests on. Um, but if you remember our episode, which was number one 17, when Sherik Cassandra’s PhD first joined us and we got so much feedback about it, about her, that we rereleased it as a classic play during the holidays. And then that our team’s like, Hey, we got to have her back and let’s do let’s, let’s have her on a live stream so we can, you know, she can interact with, with our community and everyone in cheap seats. So we’re doing just that. So Greg, I’m gonna, uh, I’m gonna not, I’m gonna do as much justice as I can intro her in 30 seconds here. So our guest today earned her PhD in inorganic chemistry. Uh, I could barely say that much less navigate through that degree program, right?
Greg White (00:10:44):
Yeah. So we’ve established that she’s smarter than we are.
Scott Luton (00:10:48):
Oh, undoubtedly. She then spent time leadership roles at the Dow chemical company authentics and now, uh, Manor polymers. She’s been named one of the 20 most influential women in manufacturing. And then more recently named one of the top 50 influencers in the world. Again, advanced manufacturing, supply chain and logistics. She’s got a ton of stories and perspective. Please join me in welcoming. Sherrick a Sanders PhD. Sherrick uh, good afternoon. How are you doing?
Greg White (00:11:18):
Hey everyone. How’s it going?
Scott Luton (00:11:20):
Great. Fantastic. Fantastic. We’re we’re we were a minute late getting you on
Greg White (00:11:26):
Pretty good intro though. Sherita, was it worth waiting for I’m intimidated. So that’s the key to it.
Scott Luton (00:11:39):
We, uh, is such, it’s a nice to have you back and, and, and have the opportunity not just to check in with you and kind of, uh, rekindle ourselves with your journey and your stories and your point of view, but then share that live with, with all of the folks that are, um, that are part of the journey with us here today. So share a com for the handful of folks that may have not been able to catch that early episode. I know you do plenty of keynotes in, in other plenty of the shows, but let us get to know you a little bit better here. So first off, tell us where you grew up.
Sherrika Sanders (00:12:10):
I am a Southern girl. I was born and raised in Shreveport, Louisiana and [inaudible] and then went to college in new Orleans. That’s right. The university of new Orleans university of Louisiana.
Scott Luton (00:12:34):
That’s right. And the mascot, remind me the gold rush. Yes. And it’s taken me right back to two years ago. Uh, the gold rush. So, um, y’all were talking pre-show y’all were talking food and of course here in the South, we certainly love our food. Folks love food everywhere. But growing up in Shreveport, I’ll put you on the spot. What’s one dish or restaurant. Um, that was just a big part of your early childhood journey.
Sherrika Sanders (00:13:03):
So there was a restaurant, um, when I was growing up, it was a seafood restaurant and it was called a framing in Harris. It was, uh, a staple in our home and they had the best stuffed shrimp and fried shrimp and just shrimp anyway, you know, and then it was sold and it became Pete Harris. Um, so it stay within that family. So it was Freeman in Harrison, Pete Harris. And so now, um, that one was sold to, but they still make the food, um, um, at a different restaurant and they have like this, um, their own signature, Torres, tar sauce that is to die for. And so if you go to Shreveport, it’s a restaurant on Mach house and you have to go there and, and get there there,
Scott Luton (00:14:02):
Well, let’s make a reservation and go this weekend, Greg, you guys sold. Um, so next time we drive to Austin. Scott will.
Sherrika Sanders (00:14:11):
Scott Luton (00:14:12):
Yeah. So Rachel says her husband has a repeated PhD in inorganic chemistry. It’s a hard journey. So congrats Sherrick I don’t even know, you know, uh, I want, I’ll be careful about, uh, I don’t want to illustrate my really poor inlet when it comes to chemistry. I’m not sure what integrated chemistry how’s that.
Sherrika Sanders (00:14:35):
So, um, so, so listen, Rachel, I mean, it, it definitely was a hard journey. I was just talking to somebody about this just yesterday and that getting the PhD. Um, I would do it all over again, but I’m glad that I don’t have to. It’s one of those things that, you know, is rewarding, but at the same time, it’s like, Oh my God, is this journey ever gonna end? Am I ever going to see any benefit from this? And then as soon as it happens, you, you see it. And it’s like, Oh, thank God.
Greg White (00:15:06):
Well, so that’s a perfect segue and I’m glad Greg, I’m glad you just came out and asked let’s. So when you look back at early childhood or your educational journey, you know, what’s a big Eureka moment, uh, that you, that you still reflect on these days.
Sherrika Sanders (00:15:21):
A Eureka moment is when I actually decided that I even wanted to major in chemistry. And it’s, it’s a cool story. So, um, the summer before my junior year in high school, my parents were like, okay, you gotta get a job, you gotta do something. Um, and a friend of mine told me about a summer program at Wiley college in Marshall, Texas. And when we get there, um, I said, okay, well, you know, I guess I gotta go, cause I’m gonna have to do something for the summer. And, um, they gave us three options. They said, you can either do physics for the summer. You can do biology for the summer, or you can do chemistry for the summer. And we had already taken a tour of the campus. I saw the big rats in the biology lab. So that was a note immediately, nobody, this thing kind of boring at the time to me.
Sherrika Sanders (00:16:12):
So I chose chemistry by default, um, and decided to do chemistry for the summer. Um, and we got met lab. They introduced us to the periodic table and it was just like, Whoa, the world just opened up to me and I’m saying it, okay. So I can mix these two compounds or these two elements together and make my own, make something new. Every I can tell where everything comes from just with his periodic table. And it was just a, like you said, Eureka moment for me. I was like, this is what I want to do. The rest of my life. It’s so much fun. Let’s do this. I got back to school and junior year was actually the year that I took chemistry, I may enjoyed it. It was a blast and just stuck with it and majored in chemistry, um, Xavier and went on to get my PhD.
Greg White (00:17:04):
That is amazing because I never had that fee. I mean, it, it, you know, what that really points out share, cause just how different people’s kind of psyche or, um, internal workings are because I never had that experience with the periodic table. I looked at it like, what evil language is this? Right. What are they trying to do?
Sherrika Sanders (00:17:26):
Yeah, yeah. It’s the best. I mean, I still look at it now and think, Hmm, what can I make that stuff?
Greg White (00:17:32):
Interesting. That’s very cool. Well, so you obviously not just school, but in your career, you’ve had some, um, notable, let’s say to say the least some notable accomplishments and experiences. Um, I think it’s really interesting. You hear about somebody’s Eureka moment like that, isn’t it sort of kismet the way that you kind of backed into something that you were clearly a natural to think about how you were not, not getting into chemistry. Right. It’s fun. It’s interesting how that works. Um, but I mean, you’ve had so many notable moments, um, some more uplifting than others, but you were involved with Columbia when that shuttle, uh, went down. Correct. Tell us a little bit about that.
Sherrika Sanders (00:18:27):
Um, so let me just start, start that story off by saying, you know, I don’t know where everyone sits spiritually, but, um, as I look back over my, my journey in my career, I can definitely see the hand of God just guiding me and protecting me throughout, throughout the whole process. And you know, it not being me, not by my own accomplishments or my own, um, knowledge or anything like that. It’s just been how God has, has positioned me to be where I need to be and to accomplish what I need to accomplish. Um, for certain times in our history. And I can look back from when I went to Xavier and you know, how I was a part of, um, my minority access to research careers. And I presented some papers at the American chemical society meeting and landed at university of Houston for graduate school.
Sherrika Sanders (00:19:19):
And while I was at university of Houston for graduate school, I presented another paper. Um, it at American chemical society meeting, and it just so happened. The poster was on the wall in the hallway when we had a presenter come in. And when he came in, he said, Hey, who did this work? And my advisor said, you’re in luck. She’s, she’s around. I’ll let you meet her. It’s just so happened to be a professor. Um, our principal investigator from, um, Sandia national labs. And so he found me in the lab and he said, Hey, I’m really interested in this work you’re doing when you graduate, I have a job for you. Wow. It was a slate for graduation for another a year and a half or two, um, from the moment that he came. Um, and so when it was time for me to graduate, I called him thinking this guy’s not going to remember, but I called him. And he was like, yep, I’m sending you a plane ticket for you to come up, check out the place, see if you like it. Um, and that’s how I got the post-doc at Sandia national laboratories from Sandia national laboratories. The work that I did there, uh, presented a paper, ran into a recruiter from the Dow chemical company. And he hired me right on the spot. And so it was just
Greg White (00:20:37):
What you’re saying is you make a big first impression and if she works, don’t let her out of your sight. Somebody is going to,
Sherrika Sanders (00:20:48):
You know, and so it’s just been okay, everything has been guided. Um, and so to answer your original question during the time that I was working at Sandia national labs, um, it was just after the Columbia special accident. And I was a new scientist on the block and I was given that project, um, um, at the time Sandia national labs was owned by Lockheed Martin and Lockheed Martin was charged with collecting the pieces of the space shuttle that it could find. Um, but also they wanted to know upon re-entry into the arts atmosphere. How can we keep this shuttle from catching on fire again? How can we prevent this from happening again? And that was my project. And so I developed coatings, um, that went onto the NASA space shuttles to prevent them from catching on fire, um, as they, we entered the earth atmosphere and it was very rewarding.
Sherrika Sanders (00:21:47):
And then, you know, again, I can use that periodic table and I can just kind of search through and see which of these, um, carbon, carbon composites are better than the current Silicon carbide coatings that they were currently using and what could withstand a lot of heat. And it was a great team to work with, um, to actually get it implemented because it’s one thing to come up with something in a lab or to implement it as a different thing. And I’ll tell you just mixing up a bunch of stuff, I’ll just call it that in the, in the lab was able to come up with something that actually worked. And that particular project, um, was probably the most meaningful for me because I could actually see the impact that I was having on the world, um, and in what I was doing. And it just has turned out to be the gift that keeps on giving, because I mean that one project has landed me so many different, um, opportunities, um, that I couldn’t have, you know, dreamed of
Scott Luton (00:22:45):
If I can interject for a second. And just to level set for folks that may be, um, young for that, that, uh, disaster February 1st, 2003, as a Colombia, uh, spacial was reentering earth orbit. It, it, uh, unfortunately, and tragically broke apart killing all seven astronauts aboard and, and it grounded the space shuttle fleet for 29 months, I believe. And, uh, so one other, so, uh, offload background there, but also share a cup you described on your interview with us as you presented that project to kind of the NASA family. Would you talk about that a bit?
Sherrika Sanders (00:23:20):
Oh yeah. Um, so after, um, Sandy, uh, um, did all the testing and we implemented, we were invited to Hawaii to the PAC rim conference and at the PAC Ram conference, um, I was one of the keynote speakers to present my work on, um, how I, how I developed the coatings and all of the tests results and all of those things. Well, you know, I have presented papers before, but this was sort of different, you know, um, normally I’m in a room that held maybe 20, 30 people, but for this particular, um, presentation I walk in and I’m almost wowed because it’s this huge conference room and it’s hundreds of people in there and they were mainly folks from NASA because they wanted to see, okay, what, what is this that, you know, we’ve come up with? And so, um, the other weird thing about is that, uh, my boss was actually supposed to present at that conference, but he had another thing going on.
Sherrika Sanders (00:24:24):
And so he said, you know, share the work w let her present it. I think she’ll do fine. Um, and so I get there, I present the work just as I normally do a highly technical talk, but then I noticed, um, a few people in the audience and I see a tear drop and I’m thinking, okay, nobody’s ever been this emotional about, you know, my work, but then afterwards, I mean, there was this thunderous applause. People were standing up and they were clapping. And, um, a coworker walked up to me afterwards and he says, Sherry, you gotta realize people lost friends. They lost, um, people who they considered as family in the Columbia special accident. So for you to get up there and present something gives us hope that we can actually accomplish as a United States of America. What we set out to do initially in the beginning.
Sherrika Sanders (00:25:17):
And that’s when it hit me. You know, I’m not just mixing up stuff in the lab, I’m doing things to give people hope and to encourage people and to having a great impact on the world. And so that’s what keeps me grounded. That’s what keeps me with high character because you can’t do this kind of job and not have character and integrity because there are scientists out there who present false data all the time, and it comes back to bite us. And so character integrity are, are a major component of what I do and what I seek out in other people when I hire them
Greg White (00:25:57):
For sharing that. So, yeah. So Greg, uh, what’s some of your takeaway there, I mean, th th you know, I think about not just chemistry, but people having that kind of impact on people, I mean, that had to be an awakening even for you and, and moving. I’m sure it’s certainly moving now. Um, but to realize that your hat, that chemistry can have that effect on people’s lives. I mean, think about how many times a kid in high school has said, when am I ever going to use this again? Right. And that is a great example of when you’re ever going to use it could be something, it could be anything, it could be algebra or trigonometry or what, or, or whatever, but it’s worth learning.
Sherrika Sanders (00:26:46):
Yes, you could change or save someone’s life with it.
Greg White (00:26:52):
I think that’s what, that’s the really impactful part
Sherrika Sanders (00:26:55):
Scott Luton (00:26:57):
Thing that really resonates with me, Greg and very well said, both of y’all, um, is, you know, that sense of a greater purpose, a sense of a greater mission. And that was like, almost like our Eureka moment for you, that, that, you know, folks, families, and colleagues, and they’re depending on you to protect not only the mission, but, but the lives of those involved. And that is, you know, that’s, um, hopefully everyone listening to this will have that Eureka moment where there, they see how they fit in to the greater good and the greater, greater purpose. It really, it, it changes, it changes the lab. So thank you so much for sharing. So, Greg, uh, from that, I, I don’t know that that’s one of my favorite things. My last interview.
Greg White (00:27:37):
Yeah. So I’m curious, I mean, obviously, um, obviously you do hire people and you do observe your colleagues and you do obviously lead with your knowledge and your expertise and your research and your deliverables. But I’m curious either from your perspective or your perspective of somebody else, what is a kind of a key leadership moment, a key leadership lesson that you’ve learned that you would share with the community here?
Sherrika Sanders (00:28:07):
Um, so here recently, I would say the key thing is, especially with everything that’s going on in the world, um, is for leaders to realize that leadership is a service in a privilege. It’s not an opportunity for you to beat up on people with your, um, role or your power. Um, and, and, and so one of the key things, um, here recently that I’ve been able to add to my toolkit is, um, I don’t know if you guys have heard of courageous conversations. Um, and it is basically a complice. That’s used to have conversations about race, but I use them, I use that compass to have conversations about anything, especially, um, in my leadership role. And just to give, um, some background on what this is, is you can imagine since just accomplished with a North South East West axis, um, and in your North East axis is going to be, um, different attributes that people possess, like, um, their morals and their beliefs and things like that.
Sherrika Sanders (00:29:21):
And if you go around clockwise on the compass, you’ll see intellectual limb thinking, um, on your Northwest access. And then on your Southwest access is going to be social people who act socially, the people who do things and who, um, are like your protestors, the people who are eager to get out there and protest, and then on your Southeast axis is going to be your emotional people. People who feel things in terms of leadership and knowing how to converse with people and use that compass has been eye opening for me. And if people could, could, could get this and you don’t learn how to use this compass. So basically what you do is you’re tapping into where a person is coming from in the axis. You join them there and bring them to where you need them to go. So, for example, if I have a employee and I mean, we’re in the middle of a pandemic, and let’s say they lost a parent as a leader, I need to get into that emotional box with them before I start talking to them about their performance or their deliverables.
Sherrika Sanders (00:30:34):
Um, and I think a lot of leaders miss that they miss that whole, um, connecting with a person before you’re at, before you ask them to do something or to deliver anything for you. And I think you’ve probably heard this saying a million times over that people leave leaders. They don’t leave companies, they leave leaders. Um, and so if, if leaders could get that, think about the deliverables and the performance and the different things that you can get out of a person, once you connect with them with wherever they may be, if they’re the processor, connect with them there, if they’re, um, big on morals and beliefs connect with them there. So that means you have to do the work as a leader, too, right? You have to know yourself well enough. Um, and the things that you need to work on and your unconscious biases, um, to be able to deliver in this fashion and to influence. So you want to lead by influence and not by fear.
Greg White (00:31:32):
So, Greg, I know we’re talking your language. I know we all love talking leadership in practical, real leadership action focused, you know, that servant leadership, you’re always looking to improve how you, how you go about it. Greg was some thoughts that I think that, well, I think that I have to say this, it exposes the kind of leaders that you’ve been exposed to. And I’m sorry for that, because you’ve clearly had that experience of those kinds of leaders. There are those kind of leaders that you are, and that you talk about out there. And, um, you know, and I’m, uh, I, so I think we have to acknowledge that there are both that exists. Um, and, and I think the compass precept I’ve heard of the book. I have, we talked about that on a, I think we talked about that Scott on a logistics with purpose episode, but I haven’t, haven’t read it, but it sounds incredibly valuable.
Greg White (00:32:27):
And I already get it. I mean, I get the meeting people where they are great leaders. Um, they’re not leaders because, because they have a title, as you said, they’re leaders because people follow them and people follow them because they feel comfortable and cared for and, and inspired by these people. And, you know, I think it was somebody here in the comments when we were having a discussion about leadership a week or so ago, that said, you know, there’s a difference between a boss and a leader. There’s a difference between a manager and a leader. And the truth is you can lead from this is, this is something I encourage people about all the time. You can lead from wherever you are, right. You’re talking about program. And when the president went into a hangar in, I don’t, I don’t, I think it was Houston went into a hanger and talk to the janitor there who was sweeping the floor. And he said, what is your job? And he said, my job is to put a man on the moon. You know, you can lead from wherever you are. Are, there are people who are changed by their environment. And there are people who change their environment. Clearly you’re the ladder that is right. Ladder. Um, you change your environment,
Scott Luton (00:33:43):
Greg White (00:33:43):
If that former and latter thing. Um, but uh, clearly you do that. And I think that’s commendable. I really think there’s a fantastic recommendation. Right, right. Just conversations. Correct.
Scott Luton (00:33:57):
Yeah. So I want to share a couple of comments and a question before Greg continues. Cause we’re going to ask about some of the recognition share you had received, but let me share a couple of these companies’ comments here. So first off, I mean, it says that she was fortunate. She did not blow up her house with a chemistry set. Her and her dad played around in the basement, a scientist.
Greg White (00:34:21):
There’s not enough, uh, volume to make a compound that could actually blow up the house, but it could smoke the ceiling in your bedroom.
Scott Luton (00:34:28):
I can confirm. So Jenny is with Jenny from great to have you, uh, via Johannesburg, South Africa. Great to see here, look forward to our, uh, upcoming live stream. Uh, so back to Rachel, you know, talking about a noble mission. So her husband worked on flame resistant paint coatings to, with her, with the PhD in inorganic chemistry, worked on paint for homes. It could be exposed to wildfires. Very cool. Also flame resistant face paint, probably I guess, for firefighters and others. What a man that is remarkable, uh, connect with her husband. Yes, you do. No doubt.
Scott Luton (00:35:10):
Uh, plastics really. We can talk connected on a show. That’s, uh, I don’t know about 17 pay grades above mine and I’ll freak myself, Greg. Um, lots of comments from folks that really love what you shared there, both in the previous story and, um, about talking leadership. And finally, I want to share a couple of things here. So Peter watch the shuttle tragedies live on TV at the time once leaving Walt Disney world with the kids on a trip with dreams, flight national that they watched, heard and felt shuttle, takeoff, quite the experience. He also saw it in that iconic when the sheller used to be on the back of the, the a seven 47, uh, such an iconic thing. I never saw that in person flying overhead or anything, but, um, had some models, such a really cool part of that shuttle program. Um, Simon calls it, humanistic leadership.
Scott Luton (00:36:01):
I love that. Yeah, that’s good. Peter says it was a mic drop moment, leaving leaders, not companies love that. I agree with you. Uh, he goes, says a boss says me and a leader says us, our team. And then finally, we get to a question before we get back to the interview here. And a question comes from LA. Her comment first is in my country everywhere. There are teams with very minimal abilities and qualifications may be corruption in lots of government, governmental entities. She’s proud to be one of the protestors against al-Bashir regime. So now we need leaders with special capabilities to lead the old teams and replacements. And then to her question and share could love to get your take. And Greg welcome yours to what if the team is old-fashioned and requires lots of motivation. What would your advice be there, sheriff?
Sherrika Sanders (00:36:51):
So, um, it ha I will recommend, okay, this book is called, get your shift in order that I was given. And that’s what I have to say. It’s slow, but I was given this, um, welcomed by a mentor when I worked for the Dow chemical company. And it was because I was getting ready to start some Lita groups that had baby boomers, gen X, gen Z, millennials. I mean, it was just full of a bunch of different people from a bunch of different areas. Um, so it was, uh, it was a global group as well. And so what it does is it kind of brings different perspectives from, as you would call it a LA old fashioned, um, into your realm of eyesight. So it’ll help you to understand, you know, where they’re coming from and why they feel the way they feel and why it may seem old fashioned, but a lot of times old fashioned things incorporate it with the new, um, things that you could bring to the table are innovative. And so I was saying, don’t look to totally discard the OPEC old fashioned point of view, but figure out how you can incorporate it into your new point of view and make something new.
Scott Luton (00:38:12):
I like that. Um, it makes me think of a comic book movie. My son loves com all the Marvel comic loop movies, and there was a superhero that was getting beaten up and he, and, and whatever, laser Ray, whatever it was, he turned it around to make it a weapon. You’re right. It’s kind of what you’re talking about. Take, take the nature of the situation and take the, all the negatives and turn on its head and that
Greg White (00:38:36):
In efforts to make, make it a better placement, better organization, more effort, or more progress. Rather, Greg, as I turn the Baton back to you, and before you move on to the next one, what will be your take on making hay out of old fashioned cultures or teams? Well done, done at a ton in my career. I was, I started at a very young age. In fact, I annoyed the hell out of one of my uncles when they were thinking about having children. I was the oldest grandchild. So they took me to the zoo and he said, no matter what I said, your question was why, and I’ve been that way ever since. So the that’s the way we’ve always done. It has never played well with me. And, um, I have been disruptive in service to a company and I have been disruptive in disservice to myself at a company, um, by, by questioning these old fashioned standards.
Greg White (00:39:25):
And, um, honestly, I mean, I have, I I’d have to say that my advice would be either decide to fight or decide to leave. It’s as simple as that, now how you do it, you can do it very diplomatically, right? Of course. And you should, because you always have to keep the goal in mind. You’re not trying to pound somebody into submission either, even if they are you, you’re trying to help them see the light to awaken to a new way of doing things. And, and if, if you want people to change from their old fashioned ways to new ways, you can’t just say, this is the new way you have to, you have to appeal to their self-interest. Why is it in the self-interest of your great uncle to buy a new tractor rather than continue to use the old 55, 20 narrow two wheel tractor that keep why?
Greg White (00:40:17):
Because if you turn that tractor too sharp, it rolls over and it could hurt somebody or worse. So, sorry, that was a very personal story. Um, I mean, it is those kinds of things, right? It is you, you have to appeal to people’s self-interests and you have to, as, as Sherita was just saying, you have to meet them where they are, and you have to acknowledge what their self-interest is, whether it’s, whether it’s altruistic or not, you have to recognize somebody’s self interest interest. And if you want to make progress, you have to appeal to that. And you have to appease that to some extent to get to where.
Sherrika Sanders (00:40:53):
Yeah. So it’s a little bit at the influence of where you’re trying to go, right? So if you, you have a specific goal in mind, um, and that person made are they data-driven, um, if they’re data-driven, then you present the data as to why you want to move to a certain area. Um, that’s away from where they currently are. Um, and that a lot of times like myself, I’m analytical and data driven. It’s if somebody puts it in front of me, black and white with the data, then Hey, I’m more apt to move to their side of the river then than where I’m standing. Just like you said, their self-interest, what is it? And appeal to it and influence that way, all love
Greg White (00:41:34):
That. I think we could have a 12 hour leadership discussion with you share, but, but, uh, for the sake of time, cause I want to get, I want to get some kind of second half here. So Greg, where are we going next? Well, I mean, okay, so we’ve established that you had some really impactful projects and jobs we’ve established, you know, a lot and obviously share a lot and can give a lot in, in terms of leadership. I’m curious because, um, Scott only touched on a very small portion of your, of your accolades. I’m curious of all of the accolades and awards that, that you’ve received. What one, what one do you think that you see as the most meaningful?
Sherrika Sanders (00:42:19):
Oh yeah. Um, uh, it would be, uh, so I mentioned the work at Sandia is to give that keeps on giving. So that was, uh, their work was, uh, implemented in 2006. Here we are, um, 2017 and I get a call that I am being considered as a hidden figure of Dallas for my contributions to science and technology. And I’m thinking what size it takes, what contribution in they bring up the spatial, um, work. And they said that our Congresswoman, um, uh, will be involved and I had to submit a packet and they came back, you know, a couple of months later and said, yeah, you’re, you’re the one for us. Um, we’re gonna, uh, name you as a 2017, um, hidden figure of Dallas. And it was great because it was at the same time that the movie was released, um, with, uh, what it meant and what my contributions might’ve been and all of this stuff.
Sherrika Sanders (00:43:30):
And, you know, I got to kinda hang out with our Congresswoman Eddie, Bernice Johnson, um, and that, um, at the time some certificates and plaques from the white house. Um, and, and to me it was the most meaningful because it was a kind of a, not that, Hey, uh, what you’ve contributed mix means something to me, you know, means something to the world and it was extremely impactful. Um, and so, you know, I got to share it with my family. Um, they were invited to the presentation of the award and it was just, it was great. So that, that one hit over heels. It’s probably been the most meaningful.
Greg White (00:44:14):
I got to tell you that, um, that it came out when you said hidden figures. It really, uh, really made me think of that. And when you mentioned the timing, I thought, how fortuitous is that at the same time? Um, how, how do they select you? I mean, how are you nominated and selected there? Did someone nominate you?
Sherrika Sanders (00:44:39):
Yes, it was actually a mentee of mine. Wow. Yeah. Who was currently the president of the national society for black engineers? Um, I was R and D director at the time for authentics authentics is a global company that, um, uh, marks makes chemical markers for, uh, oil and gas fuel around the country. And so I was the R and D director making markers at the time, and she actually worked in our engineering department. Um, and I kinda, as soon as she walked in the door, noticed her, took her on as a mentee. Didn’t know she was the president of the, uh, Nesby association, but she was, and a year later he or she is, she’s like, Oh, you’ve been great for me. Um, I’ve learned so much, I’m going to nominate you for this award that I heard that was coming up through my organization. And that’s how it happened.
Scott Luton (00:45:34):
Uh, I want to steal a page from, from Greg’s book a moment ago. He mentioned how his uncle took him to the zoo. And the only question they had repeatedly all day was why. So share ARCA. Why was that? Why is that? If all the, all the accolades accolades, when shared a few as we were introducing you and there’s plenty of others, why is that award?
Sherrika Sanders (00:45:54):
Well, it’s, it’s multifaceted. Um, one is important to me because, um, I’m very passionate about giving back to the community. And so, um, when my, the young lady walked through the door up to my company and I noticed her and I began to mentor her and pour back into her, um, it was sort of a thank you. Um, her nomination of me for the award was a thank you. And it was something to me to say, okay, you’re on the right track. You’re giving, you’re doing what you’re supposed to be doing and what you’re called to do. Um, and then secondly, the other part of it was that once she nominated me and my packet was accepted by, um, our, the congressional fellows at the time and, and noticed it was, it was a not, um, at what I had contributed technically. And so if I ever wonder, am I doing something that’s impactful? Is my technical work doesn’t mean anything. It was a moment in time where I could say yes, it means something. So that’s why that one was the most important. I love it
Greg White (00:47:02):
Well, and more than technical work too. I mean, clearly it’s really, really rare. I’m not sure that everyone understands that, that someone who you have mentored nominates you for something, it’s usually someone who sees you do your work, not experiences, the power of your leadership, that, that nominates you for those kinds of accolades. So that’s really, really impressive. I get that facet of it completely. Right. And, and it does show
Scott Luton (00:47:30):
Something outside of your technical acumen, which is clearly right, your ability to leave the humanistic leadership. Let’s just say, chair, um, you know, you didn’t know who this person was. You didn’t know whether they were a nobody or a somebody or anybody, and you just saw something and, and guided them. And, you know, I think that speaks a lot to what you were talking about before character and principles. So, um, yeah, I get why that one is so meaningful to you, but it is a representation of who you are, not what you did. Right.
Sherrika Sanders (00:48:07):
Right. And it was possible something that my family could, could connect to because they’re not scientists. And they don’t always know. Okay. I just know she’s doing something in the lab, but this one, they can watch the movie. Um, because we hadn’t seen the movie, um, when they called me about the award, but we sit down and watch it together. Um, and they could connect and say, Oh, we get it now. You know? Cause when they’re on pins and needles, waiting on that shuttle to come back, you know, that was me when the next shuttle went up, I was on pins and needles, like, okay, okay. Let’s, you know, this has to work,
Scott Luton (00:48:41):
Right. Yeah. Right. So folks, if you have not, if you’re one of the three people that have not seen the movie, hidden figures, do yourself a big favor and make sure to set some time aside there, either read the book or watch the movie this weekend. One of the NASA engineers, uh, computers, as, as people were known back then, right. Folks at that crunch some numbers, Mary Jackson, uh, talk about an incredible journey. You know, when John Glenn, he didn’t, he didn’t trust some of what the, what the, uh, uh, machine computers were telling him. He wanted Mary Jackson to get these figures. Right. And Mary said it, he trusted it. And that’s just one of the many anecdotes, but what a powerful, uh, thank you for sharing that hidden figures experience with this, uh, sheriff. And now, uh, I wanna, I wanna transition a bit, so, um, because you were talking about mentees and mentorship, right.
Scott Luton (00:49:32):
And, um, I know from our previous conversation, just how important that is for you and, and how passionate you are about it. And yes, Jenny does, uh, see why the good ones, the good professional associations are important, the good ones out there. Great point. But you know, if you’re speaking to, you know, based on, you know, the leadership message you have today and the passion and your point of view that you have today, I want to post two questions to you. The first one is, if, if you’re in that big room, you’re, you’re painting a picture earlier, as you were sharing that really important pivotal project with NASA, and you were talking, you’re describing this huge, massive room of folks. Let’s, let’s mentally go into that room and, and this and this and this question, uh, folks sit in those seats or organization leaders across industry and across the globe. So what would you like to tell those people right now?
Sherrika Sanders (00:50:23):
Um, so, um, from my seat, I like to remind them that they hold the keys to employee decisions. So what I mean by that is they hold the cards. And when it comes to talent, acquisition to promotions, um, to building the pipeline of future employees, they hold all these cards. And so 50 to 70% of an employee’s experience comes from their interaction with their leader. That’s what the data says, 50 to 70%. So you as leaders in that Coliseum, if you know that 50 to 70% of that employee’s interaction, um, experience comes from their interaction with you, then what are you going to do with that employee? Once you have them in your company, think about that and do the work to engage and make that person feel like, um, they are delivering on something that has purpose. So a lot of times we write these job descriptions that are just, just that bullet points, but what people really want is they want to know that I am having an impact.
Sherrika Sanders (00:51:47):
And there is purpose behind the work that I’m doing. Just like you say, with the janitor, I’m putting a person on the moon, right? So imagine if that person was applying for the janitorial job and the job description said that as opposed to, I need you to sweep the floor and clean the sinks and those things. Instead, I need you to help me put a purse person on the moon. So it’s, we as organizational leaders, take a look at the big picture and not just see what we want a person to do from a task oriented perspective, but from a vision oriented perspective, um, we would have much better, much better employees that deliberate a lot more and they’d be happier.
Greg White (00:52:26):
Wow. All right. So I got to tell you, Greg, I’ve heard that anecdote and we’ve talked about the anecdote and, and, and we’ve created content around that anecdote for years. And that’s the first time I’ve heard it kind of in that context of putting that into the job description, the mission, the greater, that is what that’s worth, the price submission right there. Sherrick at Greg, your thoughts. Well, that’s absolute, it’s an absolute necessity these days, gen Z and gen, Y both absolutely demand it. They want to know what they’re working for. And the truth is the only difference is the demanding it, because if you look at some of the statistics, the sheriff sheriff has a referring to people. They want, they want to know that they are respected. They want recognition. They want relevance in their role. Right. And, and they want to have that higher purpose.
Greg White (00:53:15):
They, that relevance means, am I doing something meaningful? Am I meeting a higher purpose? Right. So if you just keep those three RS in mind, then you can do right by your people. And yes, of course, give them something to, to look toward because it’s a, it’s a tough environment. I can’t believe we’re saying that just a year later, right. After 22% or whatever, uh, unemployment. Right. So, um, but, but you know, you are competing for the best of the best. And if you want the best, you have to give them something to aim for a North star.
Sherrika Sanders (00:53:53):
Absolutely. Absolutely. And I mean, when you, when you talk to people now that leave jobs, what did they say? Oh, my mom died and they didn’t even care. Or, you know, something like that. Most of the time you get complaints. It’s about the lack of compassion from the leadership, the lack of, uh, engagement and connection. So that’s what we want to deal with.
Greg White (00:54:16):
I remember that, um, that those two strategies I said, right. Either fight or flee in that case, if they don’t care about your mother flee, go find a job somewhere else that there is something wrong with the culture of that country.
Scott Luton (00:54:31):
Right. Amen. Amen. All right. So folks, we may go over just a couple of minutes here, but I don’t want to share it because it’s such a great interview. If we’d have to go three hours and we’ll go three hours, you guys got me for the day. Awesome. Well, Aaron says, it’s amazing. Love what you shared. A lot of the comments along those lines. I agree with Aaron, Aaron hope this finds you well, Aaron SMI tech, Tom agrees with Greg, both of y’all jobs. These days have got to be purpose. It gotta be purpose-driven. So, um, all so share, come, both of y’all essentially we’re, we’re speaking kind of to, and, and certainly referencing, you know, the, the earlier generations, right. Folks that may be finishing up their degrees these days, or maybe they’re pre college, or maybe they’re they just broken industry. Maybe they’ve been in it for, you know, months, a couple months, or a couple of years. If you had those in that Coliseum, I’m gonna steal that term from you. Coliseum moment. If you had your captive attention for the next minute or two, what would you share with those folks?
Sherrika Sanders (00:55:31):
Um, I think I’ve said it a bunch of times before. Um, if not here, definitely in certain, um, other arenas, when I’m talking to new leaders or aspiring leaders, I can not stress in enough for them to do the work. Do you think you want to be a leader, but first recognize that leadership is not a power play. Uh, good leaders recognize leadership as a service and a privilege, not a right. And once you get that, and once you do the work, then come to the realization or figure out if you’re, you’re willing to show up and be a great leader. And what I mean by that is that willing to show up and be objective and willing to show up and have those courageous conversations and tough conversations, especially in the, the, the climate that we’re living in today, um, and willing to show up and serve.
Sherrika Sanders (00:56:26):
And once you come to that realization that, Hey, yeah, this is for me, and this is what I want to do. I want to help somebody else. I’m not seeking leadership, so somebody can help me. Then you might be ready to step out into the leadership role. Um, but not before, not before, then make sure you get everything you need to on the ground work. Because the last thing that I want to happen to anybody, especially an inspiring leader, is for them to get out on that platform and then be exposed for something that they never meant for the world to know.
Scott Luton (00:56:58):
All right. Uh, so the theme today, do the work share, how can I earn my PhD and obtain recognition leadership roles? Do the work. Hey, how can I advance in supply chain and get big salaries and do big things, do the work. Uh, it’s such a, um, a simple but powerful piece of advice, uh, to folks regardless where you are in your journey. So never mail it in, do the work. Um, all right. So before we make sure folks know how to connect with [inaudible], everyone’s going to be wanting it. They’re having already want to get a piece of your time, uh, sheriff, uh, it’s uh, you know, I felt enlightened and educated, energized after the last time I spent an hour with you, and I feel the same way, right. This moment,
Sherrika Sanders (00:57:47):
And I’m sure I’m not alone, Greg,
Scott Luton (00:57:49):
What’s your take on what she just shared or, or to do the work mantra?
Greg White (00:57:53):
Yeah, well, you know, there’s a couple aspects of it. John Locke said a political philosopher said, the more powerful you are, the less powerful, the less power you have because you, you become by default, this servant, this keeper, this protector of the masses over which you arguably rule, he was talking about political rulers at the time, right? You have to keep care of those people. And I think that servant leadership mantra is you have to acknowledge that you, you are as much, um, you are as much surf as you are leader, right? You are as much surf as you are, whatever they call those Nobles. Right? So, um, you have to, you have to recognize that. And I think, you know, the other thing is this sort of mythical concept that leadership instantly allows you to change everything. Mostly what it mostly, what it forces you to change is yourself. Peter principle in and of itself is you are, you are you’re re you’re. You rise to the level of your incompetence, right? You get to the next level, you have no idea what to do at the next level. And so you have to recognize that you do have to do the work because you’re the one who’s going to need the work first, when, when you are elevated to a new level of authority.
Sherrika Sanders (00:59:17):
Right? Right. And then the rewards, there are rewards in it. So I, you know, we don’t want to paint a picture that, Oh, you get to a leadership role and everything’s going to be humdrum. And, you know, there are rewards in it and find the, I find the reward in that employee that I managed 10 years ago, calling me and saying, Hey, you know, I pulled the presentation that you gave on leadership 10 years ago. And man, I, you know, hit it out of the park with the board, you know, or, you know, thank you for putting in the work for me to get that job. Now I got the job and I’m getting promoted. You know, something like that. That’s where the reward is. Yeah.
Scott Luton (00:59:55):
The work is the work. The reward is the people. Right. All right. So much goodness here. Uh, I’m going to share a couple of comments and then we’re going to make sure folks know how to connect with Sharka. Todd. The Rainmaker says a great one. One’s purpose is not driven by their job. If your job, as a tool for accomplishing your purpose, then all the better, excellent point there. Todd Enrique, host of logistics with purpose host of supply chain. Now in espaniol an nominee for best hair in supply chain, along with Greg white and many others, uh, easy leading, he is leading the few followers, convert the lone nut into a leader. So leadership is too glorified. If you believe in something, be brave to lead someone else. Excellent point Aaron says he’s only caught less five minutes inspired, ready to run through walls. I agree with you. And Peter was laughing at the Peter principle. Here’s a variety of Peter principles, but I guess every principle for him is the Peter principle. So, um, all right. So one, one last question. Uh, are you not to put you on the spot, but I’ve already gotten a couple of texts. Are you accepting new mentees?
Sherrika Sanders (01:01:12):
I am. I am. I actually, uh, converted over a crew of my mentees to mentors, um, which was very, it was a lot of fun. So, you know, I mentor a group of kids from high school to college and now they’re in medical school. So I just converted them over to mentors for some of my new kids that just came in through high school. So I have, um, open spots if that makes any sense, because they’re covering some of my other groups. So yes I am. And I can be found on LinkedIn if you want to connect there. Um, and we’ll, we’ll move forward from there. And I’ll just let everybody know. My style of mentorship is that you lead it pretty much. So you talk as much as you want to talk to me. Um, I, you have complete access to me, so it’s not that we have to schedule a meeting and talk plan a talk every month. It’s based on what you want and what your needs are.
Scott Luton (01:02:07):
I liked that and I believe her, correct? Yeah. I’m going to go sign up now. Well, uh, it’s been as advertised. Uh, [inaudible], you’re a blessing. I love how you, you know, kind of that practical, no nonsense type of interview and discussion. You’ve been there, done that. It’s not theoretical. It’s it’s, um, it’s real and it’s inspiring and uh, no wonder why everyone else and all the other organizations out there have been recognizing it. So, uh, you may need to build a new, uh, addition to your, um, trophy case. Yeah. Yes. He’s always on it. Oh, wonderful man. That’s good. Well, thanks so much for carving some time out and spending some more time with us here today. We’ve gotten a ton of comments as expected. I know you’re used to it, but, uh, Sherrick, uh, Sanders, P H D. Thanks so much for joining us and we’ll have to reconnect with you again real soon. Thank you so much. It’s been great hanging out with you guys. Yeah. Wow. That swoosh waits for no one Holy cow. Um, but that’s the type of, you know, if we’re not careful with the time, cause we want to respect your time for sure. You know, I’d love to just open up and have some Q and a for the next hour or two and, and just, you know, enjoy that company. And,
Greg White (01:03:37):
And I was going to get in line and also get a drink and just, let’s just start
Scott Luton (01:03:41):
Gavin. Yeah, let’s do it. Uh, let’s see, Simon says thank you. Great interview and insight, boom. With an exclamation Mark. How about that? Let’s see here. Mervin says, thanks for sharing your experiences. [inaudible] it looks like, uh, some folks were commenting as Aaliyah. That’s right. As the lead Davis, she got, uh, her degree in biology. Um, what was her degree in one of the very, uh, complicated degree programs, biomedical science, I think is what she got her undergrad in. And she’s looking to break in industry. We might have to have to get them connected.
Greg White (01:04:18):
I think that’s kind of the that’s the common thread is they were acknowledging the passion of as Leah and kind of common philosophies, right?
Scott Luton (01:04:28):
Yes. Right. Yes. Um, well, a lot of good stuff there. Wonderful, wonderful hour spent with sheriff. All right. So Greg, and of all the goodness that sheriff just dropped on us and all the wonderful folks and the comments to our team, the producers behind the scenes, if you had to pick one, what’s your, what was your favorite part of that conversation?
Greg White (01:04:51):
Simon says humanistic leadership. And I think whether that term has existed before or not, I think Sherrick has a fantastic, she’s a fantastic representation of that. Right? You can tell that it’s all about the people. It is all about the people. And, and, you know, I have to acknowledge that as a scientist, that probably has to be fairly difficult though. Clearly an exceptional scientist, obviously exceptionally personable, a lot of what she’s experienced. I think in terms of, um, in terms of leadership challenges or, you know, woes from less than, shall we say empathic leaders, it is largely because of the personality type of scientists or engineers and others frequently, right? I mean, it’s not always the case that those, those of us with an engineering mindset are that personable. So she is so aware and obviously so well read and continues to learn. So, you know, she is doing the work that she is doing, the work that she is encouraging people to do.
Scott Luton (01:06:03):
Amen. Hey, LA ha puts it great here. She says, if supply chain had more leaders like Shirka, the world will be a better place for everyone, I think is what she meant that fast, rapid, faster. Yeah. Better place faster. Sorry. Um, I agree wholeheartedly with you LA wholeheartedly. Um, Greg, you stole my to do the work. That was one of my favorite things. I’m sorry. Let me take that. So there’s things that you can just stick between your ears and remind yourself every time you have that moment, do the work, do the work you got to believe that work is going to pay off regardless of what that work means for you. Um, you know, just that, that, again, that NASA story is such a powerful testimony. That, that moment that hopefully we all have that what you do is number one, valuable, but number two plays a critical role in the greater good, you know, there there’s such a great, it’s a gratifying moment if you ever had that. And for it to be that impactful was certainly a big,
Greg White (01:07:02):
Strange she communicated when the next one took off, she took personal responsibility for back craft, keeping those people say, right. That’s, that’s huge. I mean, that’s, you know, it’s, it’s, it’s that kind of thing that makes, that really gives you the right to demand a higher purpose. You have to care that much. Right.
Scott Luton (01:07:27):
I love that. Uh, all right. So finally, Simon says he just made up humanistic leadership on the spot based on shirk, his leadership vision. Somebody else must’ve said it first, surely, surely someone else.
Greg White (01:07:41):
Yes, sir. Simon. And you know, what’s coming next.
Scott Luton (01:07:44):
Yes. Yes. Peter says the meaningful for me is important. Making it meaningful I’m with you. Okay. Well, we could all go on and go on for sure. We’ve got plenty of t-shirt isms, lots of notes, uh, this hour and some change was as impactful and enjoyable as we all knew it would be. So thanks for everybody for tuning in. Thanks for contributing. Yeah. You know, your take on what you were hearing and, and your, your, um, you know, gratitude for, for sheriff sharing a big thanks to share Cassandra’s PhD for, for joining us as busy as she is these days big, thanks to our team, uh, that made it, makes it happen behind the scenes, Amanda and clay, and Allie, I believe here today, Greg, a pleasure to do these conversations, likewise, to share these conversations with folks, wherever they are. And this is, this is part of our, why this is part of our work, and we’ve got to do it each and every day. So on that note, wherever you are, have a wonderful week, uh, I’ll tell you, uh, w I hope you have a wonderful weekend check out hidden figures that will make L pull everything together in a very beautiful movie or book, and, uh, you know, do good, give forward, be the change. Be just like Sherrick a Sanders PhD in the world would be a better place on that note. We’ll see you next time here at supply chain.
Thanks. Thanks for being a part of our supply chain. Now, community check out all of our firstname.lastname@example.org and make sure you subscribe to supply chain. Now anywhere you listen to podcasts and follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram. See you next time on supply chain. Now.
Sherrika Sanders After receiving a PhD in Inorganic Chemistry and completing postdoctoral research, Sherrika enjoyed a 9 year career as a Senior Scientist, Technical Services Scientist, and Group Leader for The Dow Chemical Company. Following her tenure at Dow, Sherrika became the R&D Director at Authentix, Inc. located in Dallas, TX. In this role, she managed development, formulation, scale-up, quality and commercialization of markers for authentication solutions while also leading the Environmental, Health and Safety function for the Company. In 2018, during Women’s History Month”, Sherrika was listed as 1 of 20 “Most Influential Women in Manufacturing”. Currently, Sherrika has returned to the plastics industry as the Senior Technical Engineer for Manner Polymers in McKinney, TX. She was most recently named as one of “The Top 50 Advanced Manufacturing, Supply Chain & Logistics Influencers” by Warner Communications. Given the breadth of her role, no two days are the same. Each day is exciting and provides a unique opportunity to make a difference within the company and the customers they serve. Connect with Sherrika on LinkedIn.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Adrian Purtill serves as Business Development Manager at Vector Global Logistics, where he consults with importers and exporters in various industries to match their specific shipping requirements with the most effective supply chain solutions. Vector Global Logistics is an asset-free, multi-modal logistics company that provides exceptional sea freight, air freight, truck, rail, general logistic services and consulting for our clients. Our highly trained and professional team is committed to providing creative and effective solutions, always exceeding our customer’s expectations and fostering long-term relationships. With more than 20+ years of experience in both strategy consulting and logistics, Vector Global Logistics is your best choice to proactively minimize costs while having an exceptional service level.
Joshua is a student from Institute of Technology and Higher Education of Monterrey Campus Guadalajara in Communication and Digital Media. His experience ranges from Plug and Play México, DearDoc, and Nissan México creating unique social media marketing campaigns and graphics design. Joshua helps to amplify the voice of supply chain here at Supply Chain Now by assisting in graphic design, content creation, asset logistics, and more. In his free time he likes to read and write short stories as well as watch movies and television series.
Director of Communications and Executive Producer
Donna Krache is a former CNN executive producer who has won several awards in journalism and communication, including three Peabodys. She has 30 years’ experience in broadcast and digital journalism. She led the first production team at CNN to convert its show to a digital platform. She has authored many articles for CNN and other media outlets. She taught digital journalism at Georgia State University and Arizona State University. Krache holds a bachelor’s degree in government from the College of William and Mary and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from the University of New Orleans. She is a serious sports fan who loves the Braves. She is president of the Dave Krache Foundation. Named in honor of her late husband, this non-profit pays fees for kids who want to play sports but whose parents are facing economic challenges.
Vicki has a long history of rising to challenges and keeping things up and running. First, she supported her family’s multi-million dollar business as controller for 12 years, beginning at the age of 17. Then, she worked as an office manager and controller for a wholesale food broker. But her biggest feat? Serving as the chief executive officer of her household, while her entrepreneur husband travelled the world extensively. She fed, nurtured, chaperoned, and chauffeured three daughters all while running a newsletter publishing business and remaining active in her community as a Stephen’s Minister, Sunday school teacher, school volunteer, licensed realtor and POA Board president (a title she holds to this day). A force to be reckoned with in the office, you might think twice before you meet Vicki on the tennis court! When she’s not keeping the books balanced at Supply Chain Now or playing tennis matches, you can find Vicki spending time with her husband Greg, her 4 fur babies, gardening, cleaning (yes, she loves to clean!) and learning new things.
Founder, CEO, & Host
As the founder and CEO of Supply Chain Now, you might say Scott is the voice of supply chain – but he’s too much of a team player to ever claim such a title. One thing’s for sure: he’s a tried and true supply chain expert. With over 15 years of experience in the end-to-end supply chain, Scott’s insights have appeared in major publications including The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and CNN. He has also been named a top industry influencer by Thinkers360, ISCEA and more.
From 2009-2011, Scott was president of APICS Atlanta, and he continues to lead initiatives that support both the local business community and global industry. A United States Air Force Veteran, Scott has also regularly led efforts to give back to his fellow veteran community since his departure from active duty in 2002.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Allison Krache Giddens has been with Win-Tech, a veteran-owned small business and aerospace precision machine shop, for 15 years, recently buying the company from her mentor and Win-Tech’s Founder, Dennis Winslow. She and her business partner, John Hudson now serve as Co-Presidents, leading the 33-year old company through the pandemic.
She holds undergraduate degrees in psychology and criminal justice from the University of Georgia, a Masters in Conflict Management from Kennesaw State University, a Masters in Manufacturing from Georgia Institute of Technology, and a Certificate of Finance from the University of Georgia. She also holds certificates in Google Analytics, event planning, and Cybersecurity Risk Management from Harvard online. Allison founded the Georgia Chapter of Women in Manufacturing and currently serves as Treasurer. She serves on the Chattahoochee Technical College Foundation Board as its Secretary, the liveSAFE Resources Board of Directors as Resource Development Co-Chair, and on the Leadership Cobb Alumni Association Board as Membership Chair and is also a member of Cobb Executive Women. She is on the Board for the Cobb Chamber of Commerce’s Northwest Area Councils. Allison runs The Dave Krache Foundation, a non-profit that helps pay sports fees for local kids in need.
Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain Now and TECHquila Sunrise
When rapid-growth technology companies, venture capital and private equity firms are looking for advisory, they call Greg – a founder, board director, advisor and catalyst of disruptive B2B technology and supply chain. An insightful visionary, Greg guides founders, investors and leadership teams in creating breakthroughs to gain market exposure and momentum – increasing overall company esteem and valuation.
Greg is a founder himself, creating Blue Ridge Solutions, a Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader in cloud-native supply chain applications, and bringing to market Curo, a field service management solution. He has also held leadership roles with Servigistics (PTC) and E3 Corporation (JDA/Blue Yonder). As a principal and host at Supply Chain Now, Greg helps guide the company’s strategic direction, hosts industry leader discussions, community livestreams, and all in addition to executive producing and hosting his original YouTube channel and podcast, TEChquila Sunrise.
Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain is Boring
Talk about world-class: Chris is one of the few professionals in the world to hold CPIM-F, CLTD-F and CSCP-F designations from ASCM/APICS. He’s also the APICS coach – and our resident Supply Chain Doctor. When he’s not hosting programs with Supply Chain Now, he’s sharing supply chain knowledge on the APICS Coach Youtube channel or serving as a professional education instructor for the Georgia Tech Supply Chain & Logistic Institute’s Supply Chain Management (SCM) program and University of Tennessee-Chattanooga Center for Professional Education courses.
Chris earned a BS in Industrial Engineering from Bradley University, an MBA with emphasis in Industrial Psychology from the University of West Florida, and is a Doctoral in Supply Chain Management candidate.
Host of TEKTOK
If there’s one Supply Chain ‘Pro to Know,’ it’s Karin. She’s earned the title for three years and counting – culminating in her designation as the “2020 Supply Chain Pro to Know of the Year.” Karin is also an award-winning digital supply chain, business strategy and technology marketing executive. A sought-after speaker at industry conferences, you will find her quoted in a variety of supply chain publications – and active in forums like ASCM/APICS and CSCMP.
With more than 25 years of supply chain experience, Karin spearheaded strategy and marketing for Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader and IDC MarketScape Leader, Logility. Karin has the heart of a teacher and has helped nearly 1,000 customers transform their businesses and tell their success stories. Today, she is a sought-after advisor helping high-growth B2B technology companies with everything from defining their unique value propositions to introducing new products and capturing customer success. No matter their goals, she makes sure her clients have actionable marketing strategies that help grow global revenue, market share and profitability.
Host of Digital Transformers
Kevin L. Jackson is a globally recognized Thought Leader, Industry Influencer and Founder/Author of the award winning “Cloud Musings” blog. He has also been recognized as a “Top 5G Influencer” (Onalytica 2019, Radar 2020), a “Top 50 Global Digital Transformation Thought Leader” (Thinkers 360 2019) and provides strategic consulting and integrated social media services to AT&T, Intel, Broadcom, Ericsson and other leading companies. Mr. Jackson’s commercial experience includes Vice President J.P. Morgan Chase, Worldwide Sales Executive for IBM and SAIC (Engility) Director Cloud Solutions. He has served on teams that have supported digital transformation projects for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the US Intelligence Community. Kevin’s formal education includes a MS Computer Engineering from Naval Postgraduate School; MA National Security & Strategic Studies from Naval War College; and a BS Aerospace Engineering from the United States Naval Academy. Internationally recognizable firms that have sponsored articles authored by him include Cisco, Microsoft, Citrix and IBM. Books include “Click to Transform” (Leaders Press, 2020), “Architecting Cloud Computing Solutions” (Packt, 2018), and “Practical Cloud Security: A Cross Industry View” (Taylor & Francis, 2016). He also delivers online training through Tulane University, O’Reilly Media, LinkedIn Learning, and Pluralsight. Mr. Jackson retired from the U.S. Navy in 1994, earning specialties in Space Systems Engineering, Carrier Onboard Delivery Logistics and carrier-based Airborne Early Warning and Control. While active, he also served with the National Reconnaissance Office, Operational Support Office, providing tactical support to Navy and Marine Corps forces worldwide.
Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español
Enrique serves as Managing Director at Vector Global Logistics and believes we all have a personal responsibility to change the world. He is hard working, relationship minded and pro-active. Enrique trusts that the key to logistics is having a good and responsible team that truly partners with the clients and does whatever is necessary to see them succeed. He is a proud sponsor of Vector’s unique results-based work environment and before venturing into logistics he worked for the Boston Consulting Group (BCG). During his time at BCG, he worked in different industries such as Telecommunications, Energy, Industrial Goods, Building Materials, and Private Banking. His main focus was always on the operations, sales, and supply chain processes, with case focus on, logistics, growth strategy, and cost reduction. Prior to joining BCG, Enrique worked for Grupo Vitro, a Mexican glass manufacturer, for five years holding different positions from sales and logistics manager to supply chain project leader in charge of five warehouses in Colombia.
He has an MBA from The Wharton School of Business and a BS, in Mechanical Engineer from the Technologico de Monterrey in Mexico. Enrique’s passions are soccer and the ocean, and he also enjoys traveling, getting to know new people, and spending time with his wife and two kids, Emma and Enrique.
Host of Dial P for Procurement
Kelly is the Owner and Managing Director of Buyers Meeting Point and MyPurchasingCenter. She has been in procurement since 2003, starting as a practitioner and then as the Associate Director of Consulting at Emptoris. She has covered procurement news, events, publications, solutions, trends, and relevant economics at Buyers Meeting Point since 2009. Kelly is also the General Manager at Art of Procurement and Business Survey Chair for the ISM-New York Report on Business. Kelly has her MBA from Babson College as well as an MS in Library and Information Science from Simmons College and she has co-authored three books: ‘Supply Market Intelligence for Procurement Professionals’, ‘Procurement at a Crossroads’, and ‘Finance Unleashed’.
Host, Veteran Voices
Mary Kate Soliva is transitioning from active duty in the US Army. She is currently in the Doctor of Criminal Justice program at Saint Leo University. She is passionate about combating human trafficking and has spent the last decade conducting training for military personnel and the local community.
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.