Logistics with Purpose
Episode 48

If everybody does their part, we can make a difference. We can end hunger around the world.

-Adili Kea, SERV International

Episode Summary

Approximately 9 million people will die this year because of a lack of food—but they don’t have to. That’s where SERV International comes in. In this episode, co-hosts Kristi Porter and Monica Roesch chat with Chief Development Officer Adili Kea on how the organization is taking big steps to end hunger sustainably. Tune in to learn more about Adili’s journey from selling pastries in Kenya to welcoming in the era of cryptocurrency—and find out how you can take action now to save lives.

Episode Transcript

Intro/Outro (00:02):

Welcome to logistics with purpose presented by vector global logistics in partnership with supply chain. Now we spotlight and celebrate organizations who are dedicated to creating a positive impact. Join us for this behind the scenes glimpse of the origin stories, change making progress and future plans of organizations who are actively making a difference. Our goal isn’t just to entertain you, but to inspire you to go out and change the world. And now here’s today’s episode of logistics with purpose.

Kristi Porter (00:34):

Hi, and welcome to another episode of logistics with purpose. I’m your host Kristi Porter of vector global logistics. And today co-hosting with me is my fabulous team member, Monica Roche money. How are you today?

Monica Roesch (00:46):

Hi, Kristi. Doing great. How about you?

Kristi Porter (00:49):

I am doing well and excited for this conversation. Um, our guest has been a long time friend of vector and of mine personally. We were able to work together in multiple ways, so I am thrilled to have him on here and we’ve been chasing him down to have this conversation for a long time. So we’re excited to hear more about ADLI and serve international. So for those of you not aware, Adili Kea is the chief operations and development officer at serve international. So welcome. Adili we’re so glad you’re here.

Adili Kea (01:17):

Thank you. Thank you. And I’ll say Asante, which is thank you in my language. I’m really honored to, to be here today. Thank you.

Monica Roesch (01:23):

Hi Adili. Thanks for being here with us today. So to start us off, uh, can you tell us a little about where you grew up and your childhood?

Adili Kea (01:32):

Yes. Uh, so I’m from the motherland. I’m from Kenya Africa, that’s in Eastern part of Africa, uh, been in America for a little bit of a 13 years and growing up in Kenya was awesome. You know, my childhood was great. Um, but there are things as a young boy that shaped me in the region. I grew up, I was right on the board of Kenyan, south Suan in the early nineties during the war, the civil war in Sudan or South Sudan now. And during that time, one of my first memories of a young boy was seen thousands of kids, my age, uh, who had escaped the war. And they had walked for miles, uh, days for most of them, uh, just to find a place of peace, a place of rest. And so they ended up in my community right in the middle of the desert in a place called Lokichogio. And so one of my first memories of the young boy is this kids who had walked for days, uh, trying to survive and they walk in and it really stuck to me from that day, uh, that I knew that I had to do something with my life.

Kristi Porter (02:34):

That’s fantastic. Um, you, so you talked about, I think pretty common images that we’re used to in the us, the war torn the, um, true children in need. And that’s a lot of the perspective that we get here in the us. However, you also talked about loving it and it was great growing up there. So what are we, what’s the missing piece, especially for those of us here in the us who kind of only get a one sided view of growing up and living in Africa. What do you wanna tell us about Kenyan about growing up there? What misconceptions and what would you, what are the sides that we need to know? In addition to that,

Adili Kea (03:10):

Uh, Africa is a beautiful continent. Kenyan is a beautiful place. It’s a beautiful country. Uh, you know, I think that this miscon concept around the world about just Africa and what Africa looks like, uh, especially from, uh, what we see on TV and what is kind of sold. Uh, but it’s beautiful. And even growing up in the hardships of Africa, you know, as a young kid, there’s pain and there’s everything that you see around you, but there’s also hope, you know, you see that hope passed down through your family, through the stories. And, uh, the idea of we wanna build a better country, a better continent, you know, resonates across the hearts and lives of every African. So, you know, one thing I love to change in my lifetime is the image of Africa in terms of, you know, the people there, the most hardworking people and I’m biased. And from there, those people put time, you know, they’re not, you know, some of us live in some of the hardest continents, but they, they do their best to make, you know, to take what they have and make the best out of it. So that is the Africa I grew up in.

Monica Roesch (04:11):

Yeah, me too. And I love that you talk about hope and about it people specifically. So going back to that, what is the lesson or two that you learned during your childhood, uh, that you have carried with you into your life work until now?

Adili Kea (04:25):

So as a young boy, I had a great mom, great family, great mom and dad. Uh, but life was hard. We didn’t have all the items, all the things that we have in the United States, uh, life was tough as a young boy. And, uh, so we were all expected to play and providing for the family. And that’s cultural. I know it’s very different in America. You know, the story I’m about to tell you might sound like child labor in America, but looking back is just part of our life. And so growing up, one of my responsibilities was to go out and sell pastry cakes. Uh, we, we called them cakes, but they’re pastries. And I used to go out in the neighborhood, uh, for and 5:00 PM. When I got back from school door to door selling cakes, and sometimes business was not good. So I came back home with two out of the 42, uh, cakes I had or pastries I had.

Adili Kea (05:13):

And, uh, my mom would welcome. Welcome me back. Thank me for all. I’m doing congratulate me for selling 40 pieces, but she did something that really shaped me. She sent me back every single night to sell the remaining two remaining three. And, uh, as a young man, you don’t wanna go back at seven, 8:00 PM back on the, you know, community to do this, but it taught me never to give up, you know, my mom, I could come back and say, I didn’t see anybody in the neighborhood. Nobody economy’s bad. You know, my mom look at that as an opportunity to go back and sell those two cakes. And so it really taught me that. So as a young man, I had a chance to really learn, connect with people. But the idea that never give up was really, you know, that was really for my parents.

Kristi Porter (05:58):

Yeah. How many brothers and sisters do you have

Adili Kea (06:00):

That that’s a question. Every African will will answer difference. So on the books, I’ll say, I, you know, we are four of us, uh, four boys, uh, but my home, you know, we had maybe 15, 16 people, you know, we shared a bed, uh, my brothers and I, and everybody else, we this small bed facing different sides. And so, uh, to, to, to this day I sleep like so straight people think I’m dead when I go to sleep, but I shared a bed with so many people that you don’t move around, you know, get kicked from moving around. So, uh, that’s that yo, to answer your question, I don’t really know the answer. We had many people in our house at some at times.

Kristi Porter (06:39):

Fantastic. And how old were you when you were out? Uh, selling cakes?

Adili Kea (06:43):

Oh, I started at first, we tried to sell popsicles, you know, it’s like, you know, and it was hard because it’s so hot. So they melt like a minute after you leave the house. But I was, I was selling items on the streets since I was in 30. Great. Wow. You know, and this was, you know, selling popsicles, sold pastries, sold poultry chicken, you know, we had to, uh, take chicken. We had to about a hundred. We took, took care of them. Uh, you know, and we had to do everything by hand, take all the feathers in hot water. Wow. Uh, cut them open, put them on my bicycle, which was, and bicycle was like for grown up and ride it to every center I could find and sell it. Wow. And so, you know, my whole experience. And then by the time I was in high school, when I graduated, uh, my first business was vacuum cleaning. We, I, I had the only vacuum cleaner in a whole area hopeful. So I started a business called VA, uh, B clean cleaners, which I clean, uh people’s carpet. So I got a lot of experience of work from an early age. Yeah.

Kristi Porter (07:43):

Yes. Okay. So now I’m curious from a logistics perspective about this. Yeah. So how did you, where did these items come from and did you just mark them up? And like, you got the, for example, you’re actually plucking chickens and things, but like the cakes and the popsicles are, you just buy us from the store and then marking them up and walking them around the neighborhood. What did that look like?

Adili Kea (08:03):

Oh, you know, we were big about owning the platform, not owning the app. Somebody’s gonna get what I’m talking about. So we had groups of Americans coming in and, uh, they’re teaching us English, teaching us math, but also they taught us how to bake. And so my mom learned skills of baking. And so you, she made what we called cakes and that’s why I corrected same pastries. Yeah. Cause for most Americans, they were not cakes, but for us, they were sweeter than bread. So there were cakes. Yeah. And so she baked cakes and we went door to door. And so that’s how we did cakes for popsicles. We just mixed up juice and water and, uh, we didn’t even have a fridge or freezer. So we rented one, we put them in, I picked them up in the morning and went door to door with this tiny cooler. And for the chicken, you buy chicken at, you know, you know, two days old and you keep them for about five, six weeks, feeding them, all this food. And then you, you know, you go around selling them. You have no fridge. So once you slaughter the chicken, you have less than four hours to sell it. Yeah.

Monica Roesch (09:00):

Wow. Very quick. That’s

Kristi Porter (09:02):

Incredible. Yeah. It’s funny, like now full circle, because if you were in that business here in the United States, you’d probably be doing well because now everybody wants the homemade in local and gourmet popsicles are a big business.

Adili Kea (09:15):

I know, I know. You know, I’ve been, you know, thanks to my parents. I, I had to, I learned early, you know, about, uh, working hard. Uh, we had no option really, but, uh, and again, this is just not my story. In fact, my story is very basic compared to the lives of many kids or many children in, in Africa. So I’m just fortunate to have started early, uh, being part of helping our community. Yeah.

Monica Roesch (09:38):

Yeah. A ideally, sorry, now I have tons of questions. Probably you’re a great salesman, but before we jumped into your career, I’d like to ask you, so how was it that, that you grew up in Kenya and learned all of these skills and then you end up in the United States, like,

Adili Kea (09:57):

Yeah. So, uh, thanks to, uh, organizations sending, sending books to Africa. I start learning how to read early. Um, and I love reading. I spend people buy shoes. I spend my money on books. I am a big reader thanks to books that were donated, uh, from American organizations to our community. And so I read books like Hardy boys and Nancy drew, and probably our generation does not know those books, but there are books that had probably been retired in America. And, uh, it was just, there was no TV, nothing. So I remember my first time watching the TV. So this books were everything to me. And, uh, through that, I learned the in English language, I learned how to pronounce things a little bit different. So when we had American teams, I helped them, uh, translate to the community. And so through that effort, I was able, able to get an opportunity to come to Atlanta, uh, through groups, come in mission teams, churches. I worked with them and help them be able to share what you know, in the community. And that really, to me get a lot of net network, a lot to be able to come to America.

Kristi Porter (11:00):

Wow. That is incredible. Yeah. Um, and so any good book recommendations now, are you reading anything good? We should know about?

Adili Kea (11:09):

Yes. Uh, I, I love a lot of history books. I’m reading a book and if I can show you what I’m reading right now, I I’m a book collector. I collect books. I buy books from 1800 on eBay. People dunno the value. This is not an 1800 book, but this is, this is my book. What I’m reading right now, we call a Tesla. Yes. And, uh, it’s just, uh, it’s just an awesome story. Just learning from experience of his life, his perspective on the world and getting to see what he talked about a reality today. So, uh, yeah, I pick up a lot of books and, uh, one of the questions I ask every leader, when I meet them is what book are you reading? It saves me from buying books that are not worth my time. So that’s something I learned early in life.

Kristi Porter (11:50):

I love that. And I, that’s a beautiful book. I’ve switched to Kendall on everything. So I miss kind of the hard back feel of it, but I like not having him to take up space.

Adili Kea (11:59):

Yes. It’s I, I like it. I, you know, I’m one of those old school people. I love to have a house with books around me. Yeah. Um, and so, um, yeah, I am so sorry. There’s a be right here going around me. You’re

Kristi Porter (12:10):

Totally fine.

Adili Kea (12:11):

I apologize about that.

Kristi Porter (12:13):

Um, thank you for sharing that. That’s incredible. Um, I knew you had a fascinating, uh, early childhood, but thank you. I didn’t know about the, um, all the sales and things, which perfectly set you up for your future career in fundraising as well. So I’d love to hear, tell everyone about, so we’ll talk about serve in just a second, but you’ve also done some really amazing things leading up to serve. So tell us kind of you’re here in the us. And then how did you get between, you know, getting off the plane and landing at serve?

Adili Kea (12:43):

Yeah, it’s, it’s great. So I left after I, you know, my business was doing well in Kenya vacuum in carpets. I ended up becoming a teacher and I taught third and fourth grade, uh, in Ken Kenya and ended up, you know, fast forward, ended up in, in, in the United States. I ended up, uh, taking a leadership class through the Atlanta dream center. Uh, and I did that. And through that lunch so much, it was a shock getting to America and, uh, you know, growing up in the desert, growing up in Kenya, then showing up in the country yeah. In a place like Atlanta, it was for sure a cultural shock for me. Uh, but through that time I ended up, uh, some of the jobs I’ve been able to do that have been awesome. Uh, one was a catering, uh, company that I worked for.

Adili Kea (13:24):

So I got to travel, uh, all across America, work in some of the major, uh, sporting events and, and, and got to serve some really famous people. I always, I don’t think it was the quad of my work is the fact I had no idea I was serving celebrities. And so, uh, you know, I remember hanging out with Jonah’s brothers. I had no idea who wow. You know, I have, I can tell you Elton John. Oh, wow. I’ve served. Yeah. My list is endless. So, uh, traveled doing that. And it was an amazing experience. I gave me a great perspective of what America looked like. People were different, so diverse, you know, New York and Atlanta. It’s very different. And I enjoyed that. So once I got done, uh, doing that, I started, uh, I became a mission director for the Atlanta dream center in Atlanta, Georgia right here.

Adili Kea (14:10):

And so what that looked like is that we had all this volunteer groups from around America that came to Atlanta and my role was to engage them in community service and ministry in Atlanta. So we worked with the community with the city of Atlanta, and we got to do things like just cleaning up the city, uh, working with homelessness. And that was a great experience. After that I got promoted in the same, uh, uh, place Atlanta dream center had become the, uh, chief operating officer. And my responsibility was to make sure all of the 62 employees, uh, were, you know, had a clear goals. And, uh, and that was great because we got to do so much. We had amazing, uh, people on that team. Uh, one of the areas we worked in was risking women out of human trafficking. And, uh, I think just looking back, that’s, that’s something I’m still very passionate about. And very, when I look back how some of the best memories working and doing that, yes,

Kristi Porter (15:02):

That’s how we met. And it was, um, it’s still an amazing organization. And, uh, yeah, I love the work that, that, uh, Atlanta, a dream center is still doing and that you set up to help them with and everything. But I’d love to circle back for just a second to your teaching career teaching third and fourth grade, that’s a fun age, but I’m also curious, there are probably lessons from that you learned as a teacher that I know you worked for a while at Atlanta reading center with the kids programs and things, but I’m curious also, if some of the, the lessons you learned as being a teacher also translated into working with adults

Adili Kea (15:36):

Here. Here’s the big thing about being a teacher? You know, one thing that I, I, I don’t think I can be a teacher again, I’ll say that. And here’s why teachers are the most, this people give a hundred. Yeah. I cannot let anybody in my classroom fail. And I used to carry that pressure home with me. Like, if there’s a student who’s not good at math, I just don’t understand that you’re not good. I want you to be the best at math, the best at science. And so when I look back at my time being a teacher, I, I just was so all in with those kids and my kids now are great. They, they, they’ve all in high school doing amazing things. I, and so coming to America, I think the same concept of being a teacher is what I do with my employees. I, everything we work on and my team we work on, I just, I’m all committed in what we do. And so I still take the lessons I learned as a teacher that, uh, you know, you gotta take care of your employees, your staff, your team, you know, to win. You gotta make sure everybody’s involved. Everybody under stands, what we’re doing. And so, uh, that’s kind of one of the things I learned, um, as a teacher

Kristi Porter (16:37):

Yeah. Makes perfect. Well,

Monica Roesch (16:39):

And I, I’m also sure that you have to make sure that they also share the passion and they love what they’re doing so well here as a vector, we have, well, we have the pleasure of partnering with you guys observe since thousand and 13, and we just love what you do. We’re huge fans of your work. And it’s very satisfying to be like contributing a little bit to your mission. So for just who are not familiar with your organization, can you tell everyone about the need for what you do and how se came to be?

Adili Kea (17:12):

Yeah, first of all, I, I wanna correct. And I hate to do this, but vectors playing a big role, not a little role. The reason I say that is even if somebody giving a dollar, a million dollar, we’re not talking about the value of money we’re talking about saving lives. I think the concept of a lot of organizations and what they do is just a good deed, uh, serving a national what we do. We, you focus on life saving food. We’re not giving somebody a snack. Uh, this is a life saving meal. And so vector global logistics partnership with serv has been able to save life. You know, if I look at the partnership, I don’t see it as, oh, we just donated food in Africa around the world. No, we saved lives. And that might be hard for a lot of people to understand, because in America we have so much, uh, my kids this morning, we had, uh, you know, they were looking at breakfast. We have so many cereal, like so much cereal. You know, you have to choose from

Monica Roesch (18:06):

The

Adili Kea (18:06):

People we are serving. They have no choices. This is it. This is a lifesaving meal. So vector global has played a big role in seven lives. So our organization, uh, is just thankful to be able to partner with you guys. And, uh, just the amazing impact that has happened throughout the year. So thank you.

Monica Roesch (18:22):

Thanks to you. And this is very touching. It, it, thanks. Thanks to you. I have no words and we’re very happy to, to be able to help. And, but tell us more about how you do these, uh, life saving meals. Um, let the people know exactly how se can change the life of these people that need you most.

Adili Kea (18:43):

Yeah, so I, I, I confirmed the statistics this morning, cuz I know that I didn’t wanna come up here and just make up info.

Adili Kea (18:51):

And, and, and this is, this is, this is crazy that in 2022, today this one day 24,000 people are going to die because of lack of food today. This is in 2022. We are building metaverse we’re building. Yeah. Uh, artificial intelligence. We have so much money that wet, don’t know what to do with, but people are still dying from hunger this year. I think the exact numbers are 9 million estimated 9 million people will die because of lack of food because of hunger. And so serving at national is focused on making sure that that doesn’t happen. We’ll love to get that number to zero. Um, and we believe, I, I sometimes I’m honestly, I’m almost embarrassed to tell people what I do in 2022. They shouldn’t be an organization focused on feeding people around the world. This should be something that we are all engaged in. There’s great organizations, uh, feed the hungry convoy of hope.

Adili Kea (19:45):

It’s not just serving a national, the fact that this is still happening, that people do not see the need for this to of me is mind blowing. When you look at this numbers to a lot of people, they’re just numbers 9 million people. What does that mean? Well, a deli who grew up in Kenya knows they’re just not numbers. They’re people. I would’ve been one of those statistics. And so that’s why I’m very passionate about this. This is not some number we can throw around there. This is real people, real humans. And I would be one if my life had not been transformed by the goodness and of God and other people. So that’s why I’m passionate. So serving a national focus on that, our goal is to make sure that zero people have to die from hunger in this time. Uh, 20, 22. Yeah.

Kristi Porter (20:27):

Um, yeah. And can you talk a little bit about, um, why, I mean, you mentioned it a little, it, but there are lots of great organizations, as you said, and there are people handling water medicine, all kinds of needed aspects. So why, um, if you wanna tell us a little bit about how Steve got started and, and why food is your focus area even before getting on here, we were talking about, you know, what’s going on in Ukraine and how to fix these issues. And you said food is our thing. We are good at food. That’s where we stay in our lane. So talk a little bit more about why food instead of some of these other issues and kind of the founder, Steve founding the organization.

Adili Kea (21:02):

Yeah. We have a great founder and, uh, he’s background is business and, and the, this is really important to know because I think a lot of people, uh, feel like they don’t qualify because they’re in business or other industries that are far away from nonprofit. Uh, but Steve, our founder is a businessman who, uh, you know, felt a call in from God to be able to make a difference in the world. And yeah, he was on a trip in Venezuela and while he was there, he felt called to come back and make a difference and feed orphans around the world, feed children around the world. And he did not know how to start that he’s great at businesses, but he knew that he had to do something and it’s always a challenge for me. Everybody can do something. And he’s one of the few people that decided to take that call in from a moment on a podcast or, or a preacher on, on stage to an action.

Adili Kea (21:54):

And that’s what he did. And through his, you know, him taking that action as of last, year’s serves already done over 27 million meals around the world and I’d taken a lot, it’s taken work, it’s taken commitment. Uh, but that’s, what’s unique about Steve. He’s not a pastor. He’s not some guy who just wanted to start a nonprofit. He’s a businessman that could not sit back down and see what was happening around the world and be okay with it. And that’s my hope, my hope is that we can all see that and say, we can all play a role in, in making a difference. So that’s the history and foundation of sure was started like that. And now it’s grown to more of a global organization where, uh, we’re in Afghanistan when Jordan, uh, we’ve delivered in Cuba, uh, when Kenya, south and other areas, this is just because of one man saying yes to the calling. Yeah.

Kristi Porter (22:43):

Fantastic. Well, speaking of roles, let’s talk a little bit more about your role, um, at what are you doing specifically there on the team and tell us about some of the, the favorite parts of your job.

Adili Kea (22:55):

So I have a, a, a, you know, my, my role is as chief development, I came in as a fundraiser without any experience. Uh, so I, I never, apart from selling cakes yeah. And pastries, that was the only fundraiser I ever did. Uh, but I came into this role as a, as a fundraiser. And the reason this is important is because I got to a point in life. I went back home for Christmas. And when I went to Kenya, I, I saw that the people that I grew up with were still suffering in the same level. I, you know, that they, we were suffering in the nineties. And so I came back excited about making a difference. And I had nothing. All I have is passion. And so the only role possible was development. And so I, I jumped in this role and I traveled around every single city.

Adili Kea (23:38):

I could find any meeting, any church, any place to share what was happening around the world. So that’s the development side of what I do. It’s really raising awareness. We don’t want to ask you to give, we want you to see the need and say, I wanna partner with serving a national. That’s how I feel development is done. If you do a good job in development, you’ll never have to raise money. And that’s, that’s the goal. I’m not there yet. But my goal is never to raise money is to get you to become a partner of what we’re doing. So that’s the development side. The other side of these is the operation. This is where I’m excited about. I know a big percentage of the people watching this, listening to this, they work in operations, logistics, and what that is, is serve its focused on getting food to the most complex regions around the world. The idea is there’s no food problem in the world. We have so much food I worked for. I told you, catering company. Yeah. There is a supply issue with food. If you eat pizza and you wanna get into Africa, there’s no way to do that. And that’s the way it sort of comes in. Now we don’t deliver pizza, but it’s, it’s, it’s close. It’s it’s really that good. So, yep.

Monica Roesch (24:42):

So I would like to just make quick break, to say congratulations to you for what you’re doing for all of your passion and for really caring, because I can tell like when you really care about something, when you feel it, when you’re passionate about it, that’s how you can share it. And that’s how you can get people to really understand and to really commit and share that feeling. And that’s, what’s making the difference and because of your passion and your background and all of your efforts and truly caring about the difference, that’s why you are really good at your job. Yeah. Thank you. So congratulations and thanks again for sharing all of this with us, because it’s very touching. It’s very important. And as you say, everyone can make the difference. It, it matter if you have a lot of experience or not, or if you have a business or if you are in charity, everyone, every single one of us can do something different in our community. So please make the difference. And well, going back to, to the statistics that you mentioned, 9 million people is, it’s just unbelievable at this time in this year, but there are also good things like the results that se is making. So can you tell us what some of the really remarkable results and please share some of, of a couple of success stories.

Adili Kea (26:02):

Yeah. And, and, and again, thank you very much. I’m so honored. I feel like I’m, you honored by superstars. You guys do logistics, you guys are the stars. So I feel like I’m getting there, you know, I’m trying to be trying to be in the same table with you guys, but, uh, I appreciate that. Thank you. Thank you so much. Um, yeah. So one of the greatest victory is when you see data on children dying in east, most of the data is in the regions we serve. Uh, we have villages that we collect data. We have a doctor on staff. So we go to these communities every week, sometimes every day. And, uh, after collecting data, there was numbers of the years. Some of the villages we served had 18 children die from hunger, you know, and that was common. And I believe in 2019, we made a, a, a, a goal to get that number to zero.

Adili Kea (26:54):

And the year 2021, uh, nine of those villages had zero death from hunger. Wow. And you know, it, if I would retire today, if I stopped doing this, that was probably my proudest moment for our team. We have an amazing team that works in international. In internationally. We have a great local team here, but everybody came together towards that goal, uh, and made sure that every kid received meals, uh, consistently. And so the zero, uh, death from hunger was our biggest achievement as a, as an organization. Um, some of the achievements we’ve been able to do is if you go back in 2018 survey done only was doing about 1.2 million meals, uh, a year, uh, in 2021, we were able to do 7 million meals, uh, a year. So there massive growth that has happened. Now, when I say those numbers, it’s just a number, but every number is, is, is a person that’s life has been changed from that meal.

Adili Kea (27:54):

And that’s very important because when you hear 1.2 to 7 million, a lot of people is like, congratulations, serve great job. You guys are working hard. Yes, that’s true. And we have an amazed, but those are lives that have been saved. Those are hundreds of people, thousands of people that now have a future have hope. And this are the people like Esther in a village who’s who’s who, who had no food. And now they have food and their children are going to school. Uh, this are people in Afghanistan and Jordan that have hope now, and their kids are going to school and getting an, the next doctors, the next lawyers of the world. And so we are so proud to be play a small part in, in, in that world of helping people have hope, uh, you know, and, and that’s how we feel. You know, we are all very, uh, souls to making this happen.

Monica Roesch (28:39):

Yeah. And that, that’s what you do. You deliver hope and you deliver life. So it’s, it’s not just an number and these are huge wins because it’s last. And I’m going to the lessons learned, I know that you produced Thelen plan that you serve. So this can be tough. Why did you go that route rather than buying a product that already existed? And what challenges did you encounter in this process?

Adili Kea (29:05):

Now, you, you just got me happy. This one part I can smile all day. And I’ll be honest with you. This is controversial at this point. It’s very early in the stage to a point. It it’s a little bit controversial, but here is aspect. I, I grew up in Kenyan. I got food that was donated, which was great. But most of this food is manufactured at this big companies. If you look at the statistics about in Ethiopia last year, they spent about 429 million, uh, dollars. This is food that was manufactured, this big corporate companies that was delivered to Ethiopia. And I’ve been a recipient of that. Uh, when I went to school, we had a free lunch program. So I am not here to say that plane does not work. It is great. I ate through it. It’s amazing. But the more we keep on investing in this big manufacturing companies that produces food, we are missing an opportunity to invest in the women of the community, the moms, the com, the families.

Adili Kea (30:02):

And so what serv has done, we have been able to get a, a fortified Len blend, a licensed fortified, Len blend takes years to do this. And we’re able to produce it in country sometimes. And so what this looks like instead of us wiring funds to a big manufacturer that will produce this food and ship it or give it away. We send this money directly to women who, uh, produce the lentils, the rice, uh, all the ingredients. We need to be able to manufacture this food and serving a national does not oversee the process in terms of saying, now we’ve given you money. We will wanna help you use this money. Yeah. Women in Africa, smart. They know what to do with this money. And to show the impact of that. They today have tended their kids to high school college. The same women we’re talking about. This is a group of 600 women in a village of ABA. So I’m passionate about the idea that if we can start investing in communities, we can end poverty. We can end hunger and cannot continue doing what we’ve been doing for years. We have to find a way to invest in the people who live there every single day.

Kristi Porter (31:08):

And that’s also a shift, right? Because when I came to your office several years back, you were producing it here in the us, and then sending it over. So now in the last couple years, it sounds like you’ve made that shift.

Adili Kea (31:18):

Yes. And we still do shift. We still produce it in America. So there’s two, there’s two dear there’s relief effort. And there’s long term sustainability. Got it. Okay. So what is happening in Ukraine right now is relief effort. And anybody watching me please do something, you know, and, and that’s where we call vector global. We say, Hey, we have a container of food manufactured here. We need to get to Ukraine. And we take care of that. And that’s still a big portion of what we do, right? But if you are gonna be Ukraine for five years, or you’re gonna be in Ethiopia or South Sudan for five years, you have to find a way to support the local economy, support the lo local people. So this, this year already, we produced 3 million meals. As of, of now this is meals that we’re going to call vector and say, Hey, vector, we can gotta get this to this country and they’re gonna help us. So we’re not away from that that’s relief when somebody’s swimming, they don’t need to learn how to, uh, you know, if they’re sinking, they don’t lean how to learn, how to swim. Right. Give them a like jacket. We give them life jackets. But if we’re there for a long term and there’s a lake, teach them how to swim. And so that’s what we’re also passionate about.

Kristi Porter (32:21):

It’s a great analogy. Um, and speaking of working both domestically and internationally, I know you guys also work a lot here in Georgia. You’ve expanded operations around the world. Um, have you been surprised at any issues that you’ve dealt with here working in the us versus maybe working internationally is something that surprised you on obstacles or challenges or even opportunities?

Adili Kea (32:43):

Yeah, I, I think for one COVID really was a eye opener, you know, um, for us, we continued to support our community. We felt that people needed us more during this time than any other time in history. And so we really, um, expanded our, our local, uh, food, uh, distribution. And I remember we have this idea of what somebody who needs food looks like they don’t wear a sports jacket like me. And when COVID happened, we had some of the nicest cars you could ever imagine. In line, we had over 400 cars in our parking lot. Uh, we had our mask wear our gloves. We, you know, set up, I, I even had a hazmat suit now, maybe that was extra, but we had no idea what COVID was at that time. Yep. And when cars came around, we asked them to open, you know, uh, and we put a, we put a box there, no connection.

Adili Kea (33:31):

But one thing that surprised me was them, the people, the cars that went in line, you know, this were normal people who, because of COVID had lost everything, lost their jobs. And in a matter of two, three weeks, they were in line. I’m never gonna forget this one story. I was doing a food distribution outside our center. It was at a, at a church in our community. And this lady was, uh, I was going around saying hi to everybody because of distance. I was just kinda wading. Right. And this one lady saw me and she put her head down and I was wondering, what was the problem is? So I went up to her and I realized it was somebody I know. And she was so embarrassed to be in line to get a food box, because she was a big donor of serving a national. Wow. And she went ahead to explain to me, and I said, Hey, get a box drive across because she didn’t want everybody to see her. But that’s the reality of what COVID and, and other things have done to our community. It’s time for us to start looking at, uh, at the, the, the people as people and not classifying people as this is a needy person, you know, and we see this across America. And so that’s what was really, uh, different for me this time. It was, everybody was in need. Yeah.

Monica Roesch (34:37):

Yeah. And, and talking about the pandemic, you are, right. It has affected a lot of people, but how has it affected, sir? What kind of PS did you have to make?

Adili Kea (34:47):

So we had, uh, two days of panic, you know, we had all this events planned out. We had a big band. I’m not gonna put their name out there, but we had a band, um, that was gonna do this big event for us. Most of our fundraising now, as a developer was bay on events. And, uh, and then COVID hits and you start getting the cancellations every day, Hey, we, we can’t host this. And that was, we, we had a moment of shock, but we realized at that point, if we’re going to go down, uh, we were gonna do it doing what we loved to do best. And I think that was a difference. A lot of people shut their doors and there was need for the, that we did not know what COVID was, but serv decided to go out in style. And so we expanded our local, uh, food distribution.

Adili Kea (35:32):

We expanded our international distribution. We offered food to other organizations because all of our food is manufactured. Some, most of our food in Africa is manufactured locally. So we had food in our warehouse. And so we were able to partner with major organization and food distribution. And what happened is like, because we had all these partnerships, the more we gave, the more people donated, it was weird. It is like, you cannot keep up with a momentum of doing good. Yeah. The more you give it just grew. And so serve. That’s where the growth comes from. Almost 1.2 to 7 million meals is the fact that people, so what we were doing and they partied with us and we expanded, uh, during that time. Wow.

Monica Roesch (36:14):

It’s a tickle. Well,

Adili Kea (36:17):

Yes.

Kristi Porter (36:18):

Yes. And speaking of giving, I was poking around your website the other day. Um, cause I hadn’t been on there in a while and I saw that you’ve started, uh, accepting cryptocurrency, which I do not understand. So I just found it so interesting. And you’re probably way ahead of a lot of nonprofits by starting to take cryptocurrency as donations. So what, what was the decision in that and what has your experience been so far?

Adili Kea (36:43):

So, uh, yeah, we always, we, we understand like right now and, and I, again, I, I took this data before coming live. Yeah. We have 2 trillion in cryptocurrency right now circulate that’s 2 trillion I out there. Okay. And the reality is, I think a lot of times, as organizations, especially nonprofit, it’s hard for us to accept, change and see change. Now, the good thing about serve, we’re so small that we can jump on new things right away. We are, we are risk takers. I tell people the, the reason we, we serve in the airs, we serve we’re risk takers. And so when we realize there’s 2 trillion out there in cryptocurrency, we thought there’s an opportunity for the next generation givers. Mm. So what we are setting up for is the next generation. Now the current generation, they go to our website. They sometimes I give, have people not happy with us that we do that.

Adili Kea (37:35):

They’re like, what is this crypto stuff? You know? But the reality is that you have to prepare for the next generation of give givers. Wow. Uh, and looking at the year 20, 20, those 2 trillion worth of American currents in circulation. Now we have 2 trillion worth of cryptocurrency in circulation. Now most people hold crypto as an investment. And this is where we’re, we’re, we’re, we’re, we’re banking for the future in hopes that as it continue to expand, and this becomes normal, people will start using this as a currency of exchange. And that’s where certain, and we’ve already got donations through this, just because we’re one of the first people in, uh, we’ve got donations through this, but at this point we are cashing out the donations. What that means to your donation comes in. We have a platform called, uh, our platform that comes in, I call, give and block.

Adili Kea (38:23):

It just transfers that, and we get the cash. Our goal in the future is to create a wallet where you, as a donor can say, I wanna keep this for the next five years. So you make a donation, but more of an investment to serve for the next five years. And in five years, we can, we can take that money, withdraw that money and use it for a bigger platform for a bigger impact. So we, we are seeing small wins. Uh, but again, this is new. Uh, I tell people, look, look, look at, uh, uh, cryptocurrency, look at the metaverse. The metaverse is the, the new thing. I know everybody’s looking at Facebook and they have lost a lot of money, but the metaverse also will be a new platform. We want, we, you know, if we had the funds, we wanna be the first nonprofit operating in the metaverse, you know? So there’s great opportunities out there. We are very small. So we’re able to take big risks like this for the future. And, uh, we know the, the next generation, this is how they going to communicate.

Monica Roesch (39:16):

Yeah.

Kristi Porter (39:16):

Incredible. I love the perspective and I wish you had been my math teacher. I might be better at it today. Yeah.

Monica Roesch (39:23):

Yeah. And I couldn’t agree more because as you were mentioning, it’s something new, but it, I think it’s here to stay. I, I can talk about my generation. The first time that I heard about it was like, this is strange. Like, what are they doing to the money? Yeah. What’s going on. And then I started reading, I started getting more into finances courses, and now I’m actually investing in cryptos. So I can tell that probably my generation is gonna keep doing this and others after us. So it’s great that you’re one of the getting into this new type of market. And it’s great for, I mean, it has a lot of risks, you know, but as a long term, it’s, it’s great to see that. I can tell you, Hey, Alia, I want to give, serve some money, but I wanted to grow before you can use it. So I’m gonna invest in you guys. So that’s just awesome. So thanks Alia for, for being here. Just quick question, how can our listeners connect with you and supporter and very important? What are your biggest needs at the moment?

Adili Kea (40:26):

So I get this question and I have a, I have an answer for this question every time. And my answer is always the same. You know, some people might hear our story and say, this guys are radical, crazy people. You, this is not the type of person I wanna hang out with. I’m not gonna trust my crypto on this guy. And, and there’s some truth in that, you know, we have missions in Afghanistan, Cuba, some places that are hard to go in, but we feel called to those areas. So my biggest thing is every time I get this question, maybe we’re not your kind of partners you’re looking for, but don’t sit there. Don’t watch this and do nothing with the amount of people, 9 million people go, uh, you know, that’s the estimated people gonna die from hunger this year find somebody there’s great organizations.

Adili Kea (41:08):

I look up to convo, hope, feed the hungry. These guys are the tier. One of what we do. We’re very small in this space, but don’t say that you didn’t get an opportunity to do something and make a different in somebody’s life. We’re serving a national we’re on Facebook. We’re on Instagram, we’re in LinkedIn. Uh, we’re in all those platforms, but I really don’t wanna sell ourselves. I want to, my hope is that you can listen to this and say, I can look up somebody in my community. These needs here in America, somebody’s watching this saying, well, these needs in Africa, these needs in America. Yes, you are right. Please volunteer with your local nonprofit, help them support them. Be a part of what they’re doing. If everybody do their P does their part, we can make a difference. We can end hunger around the world. So that, that’s my response to that because I believe sometimes, uh, we, we, we focus so much on a server or an organization, but the reality is you are serve, uh, you can use your influence to make a difference in your circle.

Kristi Porter (42:03):

Yeah. Um, love that. Thank you so much. This has been fantastic. Our team. When we, when you spoke in our staff meeting, our team loved hearing from you. It’s always fantastic. I’ve love chatting with you via email and in person, and anytime I get the opportunity. So thank you so much for sharing more about your heart and about serve and about the mission. And, you know, if you’re not gonna promote serve in that way, I will. So go to serve one.org, S ERV O N e.org in their, uh, an amazing organization. We are so proud to have of them in our community. And so exciting to hear about all the ways that you’re learning to respond. And even just, I love the fact that you’re willing to take risks, which is also, um, not common in the nonprofit space. So lots of good things to come, and we’re excited to, um, continue to keep in touch with you and partner with you and hear about ways we can all make a difference. But yes, I love aspect. Everybody get out there and do something. Um, so thank you so much for your time today, Aly and thank you everyone for listening and watching. And this does it for another episode of logistics with, with purpose, but we will be back again soon. So be sure to hit subscribe. Thank you so much.

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Featured Guests

Adili Kea is enthusiastic about seeing lives transformed. For the past 13 years Adili has been involved in serving communities in his home country of Kenya, as well as here in America. As our Chief Operations/Development Officer, he leads a local and global team coordinating logistics and facilitating nutritious food, clean water, safe shelter and life projects and programs. He also oversees fundraising, planning events and raising awareness for SERV, as well as forming strategic partnerships with individuals, churches, corporations, foundations and other viable partners. Connect with Adili on LinkedIn.

Monica Aurora Roesch Davila has a Bachelor’s degree in Management and International Business from Universidad Panamericana in Aguascalientes, Mexico. She has work experience in purchasing, logistics, and sales for automotive companies, and is currently working at Vector handling some non-profit accounts and helping them achieve their goals. She also develops new accounts and plans with them the better routes and strategies for them to have efficient and cost-effective operations.

Monica believes that everything we do matters and that we can make a difference and impact the world in a positive way with our daily actions, so she tries to do her best every day.

Hosts

Kristi Porter

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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Adrian Purtill

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Joshua Miranda

Marketing Specialist

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

Patch Reilly

Data Analytics and Metrics Intern

Patch is a fourth-year Management Information Systems and Marketing major at the University of Georgia. He is working with Supply Chain Now in data analysis, finding insights and best practices to increase company efficiency. Patch previously worked as an intern at AnswerRocket, a data analytics company where he gained invaluable knowledge about analytics, webpage SEO and B2B marketing best practices. In his free time, he enjoys playing tennis, going to concerts, and watching movies.

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Vicki White

Controller

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

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Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

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

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

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Allison Giddens

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Allison Krache Giddens has been with Win-Tech, a veteran-owned small business and aerospace precision machine shop, for 15 years, recently buying the company from her mentor and Win-Tech’s Founder, Dennis Winslow. She and her business partner, John Hudson now serve as Co-Presidents, leading the 33-year old company through the pandemic.

She holds undergraduate degrees in psychology and criminal justice from the University of Georgia, a Masters in Conflict Management from Kennesaw State University, a Masters in Manufacturing from Georgia Institute of Technology, and a Certificate of Finance from the University of Georgia. She also holds certificates in Google Analytics, event planning, and Cybersecurity Risk Management from Harvard online. Allison founded the Georgia Chapter of Women in Manufacturing and currently serves as Treasurer. She serves on the Chattahoochee Technical College Foundation Board as its Secretary, the liveSAFE Resources Board of Directors as Resource Development Co-Chair, and on the Leadership Cobb Alumni Association Board as Membership Chair and is also a member of Cobb Executive Women. She is on the Board for the Cobb Chamber of Commerce’s Northwest Area Councils. Allison runs The Dave Krache Foundation, a non-profit that helps pay sports fees for local kids in need.

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Greg White

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

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

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

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Chris Barnes

Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain is Boring

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

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

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Karin Bursa

Host of TEKTOK

If there’s one Supply Chain ‘Pro to Know,’ it’s Karin. She’s earned the title for three years and counting – culminating in her designation as the “2020 Supply Chain Pro to Know of the Year.” Karin is also an award-winning digital supply chain, business strategy and technology marketing executive. A sought-after speaker at industry conferences, you will find her quoted in a variety of supply chain publications – and active in forums like ASCM/APICS and CSCMP.

With more than 25 years of supply chain experience, Karin spearheaded strategy and marketing for Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader and IDC MarketScape Leader, Logility. Karin has the heart of a teacher and has helped nearly 1,000 customers transform their businesses and tell their success stories. Today, she is a sought-after advisor helping high-growth B2B technology companies with everything from defining their unique value propositions to introducing new products and capturing customer success. No matter their goals, she makes sure her clients have actionable marketing strategies that help grow global revenue, market share and profitability.

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Kevin L. Jackson

Host of Digital Transformers

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

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Enrique Alvarez

Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español

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

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

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Kelly Barner

Host of Dial P for Procurement

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

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Mary Kate Soliva

Host, Veteran Voices

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

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Jeff Miller

Host

Jeff Miller is the host of Supply Chain Now’s Supply Chain is the Business.  Jeff is a digital business transformation and supply chain advisor with deep expertise in Industry 4.0, ERP, PLM, SCM, IoT, AR and related technologies. Through more than 25 years of industry and consulting experience, he has worked with many of the world’s leading product and service companies to achieve their strategic business and supply chain goals, creating durable business value for organizations at the forefront of technology and business practices. Jeff is the managing director for North America at Transition Technologies PSC, a global solution integrator, and the founder and managing principal of BTV Advisors, a firm that helps companies secure business transformation value from digital supply chain technologies and their breakthrough capabilities.

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Amanda Luton

Chief Marketing Officer

Amanda is a marketing veteran and entrepreneur with over 15 years of experience across a variety of industries and organizations including Von Maur, Anthropologie, AmericasMart Atlanta, and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. In 2016, Amanda founded and grew the Magnolia Marketing Group into a successful digital media firm, and now she develops modern marketing strategies, social campaigns, innovative operational processes, and implements creative content initiatives for Supply Chain Now. But that’s just the beginning of her supply chain impact. Amanda also served as the VP of Information Systems and Webmaster on the Board of Directors for APICS Savannah for several years, and is the face behind the scenes welcoming you to every Supply Chain Now livestream! She was also recently selected as one of the Top 100 Women in Supply Chain by Supply Chain Digest and IBM.  When she’s not leading the Supply Chain Now marketing team, you can find Amanda with her and her husband Scott’s three kids, in the kitchen cooking, or reading.

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Clay Phillips

Business Development Manager

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

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Trisha Cordes

Administrative Assistant

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

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Billy Taylor

Host of Dial P for Procurement

Billy Taylor is a Proven Business Excellence Practitioner and Leadership Guru with over 25 years leading operations for a Fortune 500 company, Goodyear. He is also the CEO of LinkedXL (Excellence), a Business Operating Systems Architecting Firm dedicated to implementing sustainable operating systems that drive sustainable results. Taylor’s achievements in the industry have made him a Next Generational Lean pacesetter with significant contributions.

An American business executive, Taylor has made a name for himself as an innovative and energetic industry professional with an indispensable passion for his craft of operational excellence. His journey started many years ago and has worked with renowned corporations such as The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. (GT) leading multi-site operations. With over 3 decades of service leading North America operations, he is experienced in a deeply rooted process driven approach in customer service, process integrity for sustainability.

A disciple of continuous improvement, Taylor’s love for people inspires commitment to helping others achieve their full potential. He is a dynamic speaker and hosts "The Winning Link," a popular podcast centered on business and leadership excellence with the #1 rated Supply Chain Now Network. As a leadership guru, Taylor has earned several invitations to universities, international conferences, global publications, and the U.S. Army to demonstrate how to achieve and sustain effective results through cultural acceptance and employee ownership. Leveraging the wisdom of his business acumen, strong influence as a speaker and podcaster Taylor is set to release "The Winning Link" book under McGraw Hill publishing in 2022. The book is a how-to manual to help readers understand the management of business interactions while teaching them how to Deine, Align, and Execute Winning in Business.

A servant leader, Taylor, was named by The National Diversity Council as one of the Top 100 Diversity Officers in the country in 2021. He features among Oklahoma's Most Admired CEOs and maintains key leadership roles with the Executive Advisory Board for The Shingo Institute "The Nobel Prize of Operations" and The Association of Manufacturing Excellence (AME); two world-leading organizations for operational excellence, business development, and cultural learning.  He is also an Independent Director for the M-D Building Products Board, a proud American manufacturer of quality products since 1920.

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Chantel King

Social Media Manager

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

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

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

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Lori Sofian

Marketing Coordinator

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

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Katherine Hintz

Sales and Marketing Coordinator

Katherine is a marketing professional and MBA candidate who strives to unite her love of people with a passion for positive experiences. Having a diverse background, which includes nonprofit work with digital marketing and start-ups, she serves as a leader who helps people live their most creative lives by cultivating community, order, collaboration, and respect. With equal parts creativity and analytics, she brings a unique skill set which fosters refining, problem solving, and connecting organizations with their true vision. In her free time, you can usually find her looking for her cup of coffee, playing with her puppy Charlie, and dreaming of her next road trip.

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Ben Harris

Host

Ben Harris is the Director of Supply Chain Ecosystem Expansion for the Metro Atlanta Chamber. Ben comes to the Metro Atlanta Chamber after serving as Senior Manager, Market Development for Manhattan Associates. There, Ben was responsible for developing Manhattan’s sales pipeline and overall Americas supply chain marketing strategy. Ben oversaw market positioning, messaging and campaign execution to build awareness and drive new pipeline growth. Prior to joining Manhattan, Ben spent four years with the Georgia Department of Economic Development’s Center of Innovation for Logistics where he played a key role in establishing the Center as a go-to industry resource for information, support, partnership building, and investment development. Additionally, he became a key SME for all logistics and supply chain-focused projects. Ben began his career at Page International, Inc. where he drove continuous improvement in complex global supply chain operations for a wide variety of businesses and Fortune 500 companies. An APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP), Ben holds an Executive Master’s degree in Business Administration (EMBA) and bachelor’s degree in International Business (BBA) from the Terry College at the University of Georgia.

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Page Siplon

Host, The Freight Insider

Prior to joining TeamOne Logistics, Page Siplon served as the Executive Director of the Georgia Center of Innovation for Logistics, the State’s leading consulting resource for fueling logistics industry growth and global competitiveness. For over a decade, he directly assisted hundreds of companies to overcome challenges and capitalize on opportunities related to the movement of freight. During this time, Siplon was also appointed to concurrently serve the State of Georgia as Director of the larger Centers of Innovation Program, in which he provided executive leadership and vision for all six strategic industry-focused Centers. As a frequently requested keynote speaker, Siplon is called upon to address a range of audiences on unique aspects of technology, workforce, and logistics. This often includes topics of global and domestic logistics trends, supply chain visibility, collaboration, and strategic planning. He has also been quoted as an industry expert in publications such as Forbes, Journal of Commerce, Fortune, NPR, Wall Street Journal, Reuters, American Express, DC Velocity, Area Development Magazine, Site Selection Magazine, Inbound Logistics, Modern Material Handling, and is frequently a live special guest on SiriusXM’s Road Dog Radio Show. Siplon is an active industry participant, recognized by DC Velocity Magazine as a “2012 Logistics Rainmaker” which annually identifies the top-ten logistics professionals in the Nation; and named a “Pro to Know” by Supply & Demand Executive Magazine in 2014. Siplon was also selected by Georgia Trend Magazine as one of the “Top 100 Most Influential Georgians” for 2013, 2014, and 2015. He also serves various industry leadership roles at both the State and Federal level. Governor Nathan Deal nominated Siplon to represent Georgia on a National Supply Chain Competitiveness Advisory Committee, where he was appointed to a two-year term by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce and was then appointed to serve as its vice-chairman. At the State level, he was selected by then-Governor Sonny Perdue to serve as lead consultant on the Commission for New Georgia’s Freight and Logistics Task Force. In this effort, Siplon led a Private Sector Advisory Committee with invited executives from a range of private sector stakeholders including UPS, Coca-Cola, The Home Depot, Delta Airlines, Georgia Pacific, CSX, and Norfolk Southern. Siplon honorably served a combined 12 years in the United States Marine Corps and the United States Air Force. During this time, he led the integration of encryption techniques and deployed cryptographic devices for tactically secure voice and data platforms in critical ground-to-air communication systems. This service included support for all branches of the Department of Defense, multiple federal security agencies, and aiding NASA with multiple Space Shuttle launches. Originally from New York, Siplon received both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in electrical and computer engineering with a focus on digital signal processing from the Georgia Institute of Technology. He earned an associate’s degree in advanced electronic systems from the Air Force College and completed multiple military leadership academies in both the Marines and Air Force. Siplon currently lives in Cumming, Georgia (north of Atlanta), with his wife Jan, and two children Thomas (19) and Lily (15).

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Kristi Porter

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Kevin Brown

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Sofia Rivas Herrera

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

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

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Jose Miguel Irarrazaval

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Jose Manuel Irarrazaval es parte del equipo de Vector Global Logistics Chile. José Manuel es un gerente experimentado con experiencia en finanzas corporativas, fusiones y adquisiciones, financiamiento y reestructuración, inversión directa y financiera, tanto en Chile como en el exterior. José Manuel tiene su MBA de la Universidad de Pennsylvania- The Wharton School. Conéctese con Jose Manuel en LinkedIn.

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Demo Perez

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

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

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Kim Winter

Host, Supply Chain Now

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

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

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

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Nick Roemer

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Alex Bramley

Sales Support Intern

Alex is pursuing a Marketing degree and a Certificate in Legal Studies at the University of Georgia. As a dual citizen of both the US and UK; Alex has studied abroad at University College London and is passionate about travel and international business. Through her coursework at the Terry College of Business, Alex has gained valuable skills in digital marketing, analytics, and professional selling. She joined Supply Chain Now as a Sales Support Intern where she assists the team by prospecting and qualifying new business partners.

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