Supply Chain Now
Episode 1138

The companies that figure out how to navigate the idea of ‘collective potential’ are going to be further ahead than the companies that still think people have to work like they did in the 1960s and 1970s.

- Mike Griswold, Vice President of Research, Gartner

Episode Summary

Gartner’s Top 25 Supply Chain ranking was started 19 years ago to celebrate the best supply chains in the world and to raise awareness about the impact a well-run supply chain can have on the overall health and competitiveness of a business.

Mike Griswold is the Vice President of Research at Gartner, specializing in retail with a particular focus on forecasting and replenishment. He is responsible for Gartner’s annual Top 25 Supply Chain ranking and joins Supply Chain Now on a monthly basis to discuss the latest in retail supply chains from an analyst’s perspective.

In this episode, Mike talks about his 3 key takeaways (plus 2 more) from this year’s top 25 supply chains with co-hosts Scott Luton and Greg White:

• The maturity and sophistication required to build and operate a world class supply chain through third party relationships

• The power of understanding that a ranking like the top 25 is not a goal in and of itself, but rather an outcome

• 2 Notable macro trends: identifying and seizing new opportunities and keeping the employee experience front and center

Episode Transcript

Intro/Outro (00:03):

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 (00:33):

Hey. Hey. Good morning, good afternoon, good evening, wherever you are, Scott Luton and Greg White here with you on Supply Chain. Now welcome to today’s livestream. Gregory, you’ve been on Global assignment, hard hitting assignment for a while. How are you doing?

New Speaker (00:46):

I have and I am doing great. It has been a lot of hard work, Scott, as trying to just assure that the supply chain continues to operate here in Europe. Oh, well I’ve seen some gorgeous, I have been working. I have, I swear. Yes, absolutely. Yeah.

Scott Luton (01:02):

Well continued safe and enjoyable travels to you and the fam. Thank, we’ve seen some gorgeous, gorgeous pictures. But hey, speaking of wonderful travels and perspectives, new and old, we have got a great show teed up today, one of, one of our faves here. We have supply chain today and tomorrow with the one and only Mike Griswold with Gardner. Now, Greg, as most folks know, the Gartner supply chain, top 25 for 2023 has been released. And here today, Mike <laugh>. That’s right, the iconic pyramid, which we’ll be diving into in a second. But Mike will be sharing five key takeaways with us today, including a couple, Greg, that are rather brand new for this year. Yeah, Greg should be a great show, huh?

New Speaker (01:46):

Yeah, I mean, it always is. I can’t believe it’s been a year since we talked about this, but I, this time of year is, it’s always fun to see, of course, who, what the masters are up to, but also what, who has made waves with their supply chain. And particularly in the last two, three years, it’s been pertinent to see. That’s right. The poignant developments of the practitioners in this practice. <laugh>,

Scott Luton (02:16):

there’s lots of peas. Good solid alliteration there. Greg.

New Speaker (02:20):

Literary. Thank you. Thank you. How about that, man, I’m illiterate.

New Speaker (02:24):

<laugh>. Well, folks, you, you, you’re in the right place. If you love supply chain, you love hard hitting, been there, done it, proven analysis of what’s going on, what leading organizations are doing, you’re in the right spot. So Mike and Greg can’t wait for the conversation. Hey, let’s say hello to a few folks. Josh Goody is back with us from Seattle. Josh, great to see you. Brian Bird song is with us here today, also via LinkedIn. Ven via LinkedIn is here with us today. Let us know where you’re from. Let’s see here. Brad Reeves is with us. Great to see you, Brad. Hope everyone’s having a blessed day. He says. I think we are Greg. I, I think we are.

New Speaker (02:59):


Scott Luton (03:00):

John Peterson back again. John, you have been quite, you’ve been on a roll and he’s based in Marietta from LinkedIn. Greg, do you know John by chance?

New Speaker (03:10):

No, but I feel like I should. Where’s John worked?

Scott Luton (03:14):

Do we know? So John, let us, I think John just took on a new role if I saw that right on social. We’ll find out.

New Speaker (03:19):

Josh. I hope, I dunno him. I mean, that’s right. Since you asked if I do, I forgot. John’s gonna be really upset, John. We should get to know one another.

Scott Luton (03:29):

That’s right. John’s been dropping some great, great insights and expertise here. Hey Natalie’s back with us. Hello to you Natalie via LinkedIn from the Charlotte area. I believe Michael Banning’s with us. Arthur is with us. Arthur just read, I think the top 25 in his supply chain management class. Excellent, excellent. Finally, VIN from India. Nice to meet you as well. Chenai. That’s right. Great to have you. Yes, VIN. Okay. So Greg, a couple quick announcements before we bring on the one only Mike Griswold.

Scott Luton (04:02):

And we’re gonna start with humanitarian project that we were spending time with Mary Kate Saliva the other day. So Greg is Mary Kate hosts our Veteran Voices programming. She is a US Army veteran and she still currently serves in the reserve as a matter of fact. So Mary Kate is from Guam and has tons of friends and family dealing with the disaster caused by super typhoon mwa. We are supporting this relief effort that we’re showing here today that Mary Kate is leading and would love for our supply chain now fam to consider supporting it as well. I’ll tell you Greg, two quick thoughts. It’s been devastating to hear her firsthand observations of what her and her family and her friends are going through on a variety of levels. And then secondly, if you do some Googling, do some searching, it’s tough to get updates from what’s going on. Guam, most articles are a couple days old, but Greg, your quick thoughts before we go a much lighter note.

New Speaker (04:57):

Yeah, well, island’s obviously highly exposed and it’s typhoon season so it, I mean it’s, there’s always a chance of this. You hate to see it happen. I think the best we can do is support them at this. That’s right. You know, at this point, right? I mean it’s, it’s part of the United States, so That’s right. That is right. And although highly, heavily removed by distance of course. Mm-hmm. Right?

Scott Luton (05:19):

That is right. Hey folks, your one click away, you’ll see the link there in the chat, y’all check it out. And of course mentioning, I wanna mention that one. Also wanna mention aade, which does great work on these disasters and many others. So y’all check out Alan aid do org as well. Okay, Greg, on a much lighter note. Much, much lighter note Sunday, I believe we published with that said the latest edition. I wanna say this is maybe approaching the 40th edition or something. Hey, this is our weekly Wow LinkedIn. Yeah. Can you believe that?

New Speaker (05:50):

No, that’s incredible. It is 40 weeks, man.

Scott Luton (05:55):

Yes man. It’s a lot of work. Lemme lemme <laugh>, that’s a lot of work. But hey, it’s resonated. We’re approaching 22,000 subscribers we try to make, with that said, we try to make it different than all the other shows and programs we do, right? So in this latest edition you’re gonna find great ideas with some folks that may not be on your radar and you’re also gonna find a laugh or two hopefully. So we got the link to the latest edition right there in the chat. And again, we published this about once a week. We miss Mother’s Day for obvious reasons, but usually hit Saturday morning or Sunday morning and Greg it’s must is it must see, must see tv or must see.

New Speaker (06:34):

Yeah, I think it is. Yeah, I think it is, especially if there’s comedy, there’s not always comedy in Yeah. But when there comedy is exceptionally worth seeing man, Greg, you make that just tells you how Scott was feeling on Saturday morning when he did this or Friday night, right?

Scott Luton (06:49):

That’s right. <laugh>, whenever the production happens, well hey, it’s a team sport and I appreciate all the feedback we’ve gotten out from across global supply chain realm. Okay. Speaking of supply chain, Greg, we are tickled to have our dear friend, one of our longest running series here, supply chain now and most popular. So with that said, let’s bring in Mike Griswold, vice President Analyst with Gardner. Hey. Hey Mike. How you doing?

Mike Griswold (07:17):

Hey kinda well thank you. Good to talk to everyone. Great. Good to see you again. Yeah, good to see you. Yeah, it’s last time we did this last year. It was like the day after the reveal and things were blowing up. So today we’re like, uh, three or four weeks removed. So things have have come down a little bit. But yeah, it’s always good to have a chance to spend time with all of you and share the top 25.

Greg White (07:45):

Well, and Mike, I think we have to acknowledge the reason it’s such a big deal that we did it the day after last year is because you personally are in charge of this initiative, correct?

Mike Griswold (07:56):

I am. But this was my last year being in charge of this initiative. So we have another gentleman, Simon Bailey, who’s picking it up and running with a pretty much starting now. It’s, as most people probably don’t know, it’s a full year exercise. Yeah. So over the course of the summer we start looking at the methodology and I’ll probably mention this a couple times, next year’s the 20th anniversary. So you talked about Greg, you know, hard to believe it’s a year since we talked about this last. It’s hard to believe we’ve done 19 of these and I’ve been involved in some form or fashion for about 17 of them. So we putting out all of our collective heads together around what do we wanna do for the 20th anniversary cause it’s a big deal. I don’t know that when this first was started in the A M R days that we thought we’d get to 20, I think after some people’s reactions we were thinking we were lucky to get to two Right. <laugh>. And now it’s great to see that it’s getting talked about at at some college universities. Obviously not objective. I, I think it’s a great piece of research around elevating the profession and at least here in the states, we all know we love a good ranking.

Mike Griswold (09:05):

That’s right. Uh, it it, it’s been a great piece of research for us.

Scott Luton (09:09):

Yep. Your quick response.

Greg White (09:11):

Yeah, I think it’s been great. It’s been great all of the years though. Never hit the top 25. I was on the wrong side of the table. But I think what’s been really notable is how you’ve continued to evolve it so that it remains a relevant rating of supply chains. Even as supply chains have come to be dif rated in different ways, including E S G and making that a bigger part of it, I think is really important and the impact to the bottom line of their respective companies. All of those things that you’ve continued to evolve the ratings based on show the relevance of supply chain in the business and I think also show, you know, good practice on you guys part to continue to adapt.

Mike Griswold (09:54):

Yep. We have seen Greg, some folks that on your former side of the table talk about how many companies that they have that as clients in the supply chain, top 25. Yeah, I think that’s a great way for the tech technology companies I think, to think about this research. Yes, it’s geared towards end users, but it is pretty powerful to say we’ve got 23 of Gartner’s 25 top companies as our supply chain clients. So shameless plug for the technology people that may be listening or watching, but there, there is a way for you to leverage this research.

Scott Luton (10:27):

Well Cel, let’s did that myself. <laugh>, good ideas abound. Yes. Hey, really quick, big thanks to Catherine and Amanda behind the scenes. Hey, would y’all go ahead and drop the link? So in case folks wanna go to the Gartner site and download their copy while we go through this, I think that’d be a great, great opportunity. So if y’all drop that and while you do that, Greg and Mike, let’s back up for just a second. Cause we wanna, we wanna celebrate some of the people of global supply chain. So Mike and Greg, as y’all both know Mike, you get a kick out of all the National International Days. We like to celebrate when you join us. But today, today it is International Supply Chain Professionals Day, which happens to be, I’ve got it on good authority founded by our friends over at E two Open. I think we’ve got an upcoming webinar with the folks at E two open. But here, this is what I wanna ask both of y’all. What is one role across global supply chain that never gets enough recognition? Mike?

Mike Griswold (11:29):

Yeah, this will probably not surprise Greg. I’m gonna go right to the trenches and talk about demand planners and I’m talking about the individual demand planner that has, you know, maybe 3000 SKUs they’re trying to manage. And their task day in and day out I think has evolved from this idea of just how do we predict demand and how do we match demand and supply in a world that is getting increasingly complex. But now they’re getting bombarded with technology, machine learning, AI as an example, and how does, how do they manage the changes that are coming in their role while at the same time maintaining service. And certainly as we went through the pandemic, right, we saw the impacts of the challenges that individual demand planner has day in and day out in terms of predicting demand. So for me that’s the role because if we don’t get that right and a whole lot of other things just don’t happen or they happen very expensively or we just don’t have stuff. So that’s where I’m gonna go. And I’m sure that given my background and all the conversations Greg and I have had over the years, my guess is that’s probably not a surprise to Greg. Hopefully I didn’t steal hints, but I’m guessing that’s not a surprise.

Greg White (12:51):

Not a surprise at all. Yeah, and I would like to, I think we should qualify that with affirmative recognition, right? Because planners are always getting recognized with the how did you hurt the company yesterday report. And if you’re overstocked, it’s the planner’s fault. If you’re out of stock, it’s the planner’s fault. And if anything happens to go right, thank goodness for those sales folks. So some affirmative, affirmative recognition for planners is absolutely necessary. Yeah. Well mine might be a surprise to folks and it’s because I didn’t come out of the transportation industry, but I think it is the drivers, the people who get where it needs to go when it’s on the road or in a trailer or in an, in any sort of craft, right? I think they don’t get nearly enough recognition because they are right. They’re the, the, the link to the entire supply chain that makes it go and, and it’s an increasingly difficult job to fill. It’s not unlike the, it gets attention. Not unlike the the demand planner or planner. The only time you get recognition is when some something gets messed up. So I think, anyway, I think they’re, it’s really important to acknowledge all those folks.

Scott Luton (14:10):

Agreed. Those are two great ones, the planners and the drivers. So my mine is gonna be a little different, but I believe one of the most invisible, unfortunately components of global supply chain and that’s the, the maintainers folks that keep those, the trucks and the fleets and the aircraft and the production lines for that matter. All those things going all the different equipment. So folks, for all of our maintenance technicians, all of the maintenance gus out there that don’t get enough appreciation and recognition, Hey, our hats off to you today. Alright, so Greg and Mike Scott.

Mike Griswold (14:42):

Scott, that’s a great one because that even that role is starting to change, right? If you think about the level of automation that is going into distribution centers and the growing reliance on robotics, those maintainers now start to have different skills and actually start to potentially look different. Yes. In terms of maybe now my main job was changing the battery on all the pallet jacks and making sure they all worked. Guess what? Now my job is to make sure the robots don’t break down right? So, right. I think Greg, or sorry Scott, I think you hit on someone that is gonna become even more important. Yeah. As we think about the, these kinda underappreciated roles as we start to rely more on, more on technology in these facilities. Cause if a robot breaks down and it can’t do the sorting and the picking and all that facility can come to a screeching halt.

Scott Luton (15:42):

That’s right.

Mike Griswold (15:42):

So great call out on your part and that role is definitely evolving.

Scott Luton (15:47):

It is. And to, we had a site visit, it’s been a couple years now, but the trend has only increased to your point. Mike, Greg, you remember we went to uh, an automated warehouse facility. It’s been tar two or three years ago and their story they told us, leadership told us is that their maintenance technicians, cause of all the automation at that time had to learn new skill sets and actually they got bumps and pay and compensation cause of it. That’s a great story to tell. Yeah. Great story to tell. Alright, so Greg and Mike, this is gonna be, this is gonna be an outstanding discussion. So this is where we wanna start. I wanna level set. I wanna start with the top 25 for 2023. Right? I was waiting on the music to uh, to turn, sorry, sorry I was a little late with the, yeah, we’re working on our time with folks.

Scott Luton (16:33):

Hey, so this is how it works. So again folks, we dropped the link. You can get your own copy of this. You’ll find a link in the cheap seats or the VIP lounge is Alison named it yesterday. So the top 25 is there and you over to the right you’ve got the master’s category. These are folks that keep getting it, uh, right and keep executing at a supreme level. So Amazon, apple, p and g and Unilever are all in the master’s categories. And then I’m gonna just gonna share the top five and y’all can check out the rest of the top 25 and also hear Mike and some of Greg’s comments. I touched on those here momentarily. But number one, Schneider Electric number two, Cisco Jack Allen and Team’s happy over there, I’m sure. Number three, Colgate Palm Olive number four, Johnson Johnson. And number five, PepsiCo.

Scott Luton (17:19):

All right, so Greg, Greg, it looks like you’re about to say something before.

Greg White (17:22):

I, I have a question. I have to ask this question. So you have the master’s category too, Mike, which maybe you can explain to folks, but how close are any of those top five? Because they, we seem to talk about ’em a lot. How close are any of those top five to moving to the master’s category and maybe explain people how that happens?

Mike Griswold (17:40):

Yeah, it’s a great place to start Greg. So the masters we launched back in, I don’t even know when we launched it. It was while ago. And it was designed or is designed to recognize long-term sustained performance. So in order to be a master you have to have a top five composite score. Seven of the last 10 years. So the distinction I wanna make with people, cuz it gets to the heart of your question, Greg, around who might be next, is it’s not your ranking where you land in the pyramid. It is the ranking of all the composite scores that we do for all this year we had 284 companies. So we rank all the composite scores. So in order to stay a master, you have to have your composite score needs to land in the top five. Ok. For those of you, I’ll address the elephant in the room for those people that are familiar with the top 25, right? We used to have five masters this year. We only have four. McDonald’s did not meet or has not met that criteria of a top five composite score seven of the last 10 years. Ok. So when that happens, you leave the masters and you land where your composite score takes you, which in the case of McDonald’s is at number 20. So to your question Greg, someone Cisco has had three years in the top five from a composite score perspective, Schneider has had three years in the top five. So they would need to have four more years of a top five composite score in order to reach that seven of the last 10 where they would be eligible to be a master.

Greg White (19:23):

So God got it. Yeah. Hard it feels like Schneider in particular. Yeah. Yeah. It is hard. I guess I thought it was maybe five years in a row or something and I had forgotten that criteria, but that is very, very hard.

Mike Griswold (19:37):

Yeah, it is. And if you think about just the way the math works, right? In order to stay a master you have to have a top five score. We have four masters, so Right. You would think in theory they’re taking four of those five spots.

Greg White (19:54):

Oh, the masters, oh count. It’s not top five of the regular listening. Overall it,

Mike Griswold (20:00):

it’s a top five of all 284 companies. Mm. Holy Mac. So yeah, so gi so stay gide a masters or getting to BA master and then keeping your hands on the master’s ledge. It is hard, right? Seven in the last 10 years, years seven years of a top five score. So yes, it is challenging and that, that list of masters will probably stay fairly consistent for the next five or seven years unless someone else can climb it. Okay. Yeah.

Scott Luton (20:34):

Don’t, don’t, don’t you think the McDonald’s should get, should be awarded the master’s category simply cause of their delicious french fries. Mike? Can we make that happen?

Greg White (20:43):

Yeah, we’re get ton of, there are people calling them right now going, we can get you back into <laugh>. Barely missed, right? <laugh>?

Mike Griswold (20:53):

Yeah. If we added a taste component to the methodology, yes, you’ve got certainly McDonald’s would have some consideration for me personally. The agio would probably go pretty, pretty high up the lip anyway. Yeah. Alright. They’ve got a number of adult beverages that I highly crave. So <laugh> not now while I’m on duty, but that’s right afterwards.

Greg White (21:15):

That’s right. Right. But immediately after the cameras go off. Yes.

Scott Luton (21:19):

Alright, so this is just the tip of iceberg. So Greg and Mike, Mike, I wanna keep going. So we’re gonna talk about, let’s start, we’re gonna, we’re gonna cover five key takeaways, but we’re gonna break them up. So I wanna start with the three key takeaways from this year’s list and research kinda in general. So where we starting there, Mike?

Mike Griswold (21:38):

So if we look at the list, this is year 19. Next year will be the 20th anniversary. And there’s a couple things that we’ve seen in the evolution of the list and let me talk about kind of two of them together. And then I do wanna talk a little bit about some of the newcomers. But Sure, to your question, Scott, you w when you look at that list, you see a couple of things. One, you see, you know, significantly different operating models and different asset decisions that companies have made and are able to be successful. So let’s take someone like Cisco who landed at number two this year. You know, they, they’re the one of our highest companies on return on physical assets, which is a measure we put in around supply chain efficiency. One of the reasons that they score and do so well in return on physical assets is they generate a lot of revenue using other people’s assets. A lot of partnerships, a lot of third parties, a lot of activity that happens off their financials. Now some right? That aren’t a huge fan of the return on physical assets metric would say that’s kind of easy. I would suggest orchestrating multiple partners across an ecosystem isn’t easy at all.

Mike Griswold (23:06):

And in fact it’s the demonstration of a very mature and capable supply chain. We were talking about McDonald’s. McDonald’s is another similar situation, right? Where they’re using lots of third parties and have an excellent orchestration capability to be able to do that. So it’s about, when you look at the top 25, it’s about looking at different paths to be successful based on the decisions that you make that are best for you around your supply chain. Now what I wouldn’t want people to do is to look at someone like McDonald’s and Cisco and say, Hey, they’re successful because they have all these relationships. I wanna do that. Well that’s, you could do that if you’ve got the level of capability and maturity that McDonald’s and Cisco do in terms of building out how to navigate that. If you’re not very good at that, then I would suggest you’re setting yourself up for failure if that’s the model you wanna replicate.

Mike Griswold (24:10):

The second point I would make is you’ll also notice a pretty diverse set of industries. Mm. It’s not like the top 25, it’s dominated by one or two. You’ve got representation from almost every major industry. We have chemical companies in Dow. We have automotive companies in Tesla, we’ve got retailers in Walmart and Indi Tech and others. Amazon obviously is a master Cisco and the high tech arena. You’ve got, even within consumer products, you’ve got different companies. You’ve got someone mm-hmm <affirmative> that looks like Colgate, Palm, olive, and you’ve got someone that looks like L’Oreal and someone that looks like Diageo. So one of the things that we’ve always tried to encourage people to think about is, what can I learn not only from companies in my own industry, but what can I learn from companies outside of my industry? And there’s through the top 25, there’s lots of cross-industry examples that companies can be looking for. So if I’m a retailer, what can I learn from say consumer products companies around the arc of collaboration, right? What can I learn from life sciences companies around innovation and r and d and how does the supply chain support that? So there’s just a lot to learn from other industries if we’re open to looking at other industries and what have they done to be successful.

Scott Luton (25:38):

Yeah. Alright. So Greg, I wanna get your take, but I wanna add something really quick. I think that’s absolutely critical. It’s table stakes and maybe some traditionalists have always avoided seeking to learn from other sectors and other industries. But I think here in 2023, sorry, I mean for years now, I think it’s been critical. Greg comment there on what we heard, different paths to success, cross industry examples a lot more.

Greg White (26:01):

Yeah, I think the thing that stood out to me is what to do with this information and that is, is identify the similarities of your supply chain demand dynamics. Don’t just say it works for someone in our industry, let’s try that. Or it works for this big company. Let’s try that. You might recall a guy who worked for Apple going to JC Penny and saying it worked for the Apple store, it’ll work for JC Penny. If any of you even remember who JC Penny was, give me an idea how well that went. But I think understanding the business dynamics of your environment and then how to apply relevant methodologies based on those dynamics, right? So this cross industry, cross vertical, whatever you have differing dynamics. High, high volume, low, low, right? Low, low volume, high margin, right? Very lumpy product, et cetera, et cetera. So identify some of the demand characteristics and the production characteristics of your products. And of course the constraints of your environment to determine which of these techniques might be applicable to your organization. But I, I think that’s the most important thing, is these should be your role models. Mm. Uh, you know, to whatever extent it’s applicable to you, it doesn’t matter what your scale is, it really matters those dynamics that we talked about. But these should be your role models for building your supply chain.

Mike Griswold (27:37):

Yes, Greg. Great. Great. You made a great point. The, the one thing I wanna highlight, Scott, and I appreciate everyone kind of, you know, putting the links out there for people to look at this right there, we do some additional research that comes out at the same time, which is we take a look at companies 26 to 50 and then we produce all of our industry cuts. So while we’ve got this global top 25 and we’ve got the masters, this results material that we publish can give you some, while we don’t have the write-ups, you can see how 26 to 50 those companies have performed and that in your particular industry you can see the top 10.

Mike Griswold (28:19):

Some of our industries like automotive, we only do five Cuz there there aren’t that many in our population. But the reason I share that is to Greg’s point there, I get feedback all the time, Mike, I love the top 25. But when I look at it, I’m a smaller company and I don’t see myself, right? P and g can do this because they’re p and g. Walmart can do this cuz they’re Walmart, I’m Mike’s little company here. I can’t hope to do that. Well guess what, when you look a little bit lower in the list, 26 to 50, when you look at say the number eight or number nine company in in life sciences as an example, there are things you’ll start to see people that look like you. Right? And part of it though is being receptive and being willing to look for someone that looks like you and not just dismiss the things that the top 25 companies do are because they’re big recognized brand name companies.

Mike Griswold (29:18):

If you look hard enough, you will. And, and that’s part of what our job is, right? Right. Is for people to say, Hey, who looks like me that I can learn from? That’s all within this top 25 research.

Scott Luton (29:31):

Mike, let’s keep going. Cause I think the third you, you’ve alluded to a couple times, but in terms of the newcomers, talk to us more about that.

Mike Griswold (29:38):

Yeah, every year we have a Ralph three to four new companies pop in. Unfortunately we have three to five companies that exit the list in the new companies this year I think are a good indicator of companies that have embraced this idea that the supply chain top 25 and where they land is really an outcome. It’s not a an explicit goal, right? The best conversations that I have with companies around the top 25 are, hey, how does the methodology work?

Mike Griswold (30:16):

Where can I participate in the methodology? And one of the things I should be doing in those say financial parts of the methodology, what should I be doing to be more efficient around how I use my assets? What can I be doing around inventory and how can my supply chain help me grow revenue as a source of commercial innovation? Right? If I do all those things where I land in the top 25 will be an outcome. When I look at some of the new companies that landed there, it is this idea of how do I make my supply chain better with an outcome of landing in this? So GlaxoSmithKline is a good example. They were out of the top 25, they came back in this year. Dow AB InBev both new this year, two very different companies. If you think about Dow is a chemical company, AB InBev as a consumer products company.

Mike Griswold (31:11):

And then Tesla at number 14, which is one of the higher places that we see companies land for the first time. Alibaba a couple years ago landed there, Microsoft landed at 10 last year for their first time in the top 25. Normally what we see is where Dow and G s K and AB embed landed. But Tesla is a fantastic story of someone that who has been in the population slowly working their way up and I think have started to tell let’s park the Elon Musk, Musk and the Twitter stuff off to the side. You typed te Yes the Tesla story, the things they’re doing around the breakthrough work they’re doing around manufacturing of electric vehicles. The work that they’re doing to make those vehicles and the assembly process more efficient is from a supply chain perspective. Now certainly there, there are conversations we could have around Tesla as it relates to E S G and some of those things, which are all fair conversations to have.

Scott Luton (32:17):

But when you think about how they’ve been evolving their supply chain, it’s a fantastic story. And there’s a lot of things to Greg, your earlier comment, even if I’m not a, even if I don’t make cars, the mindset that Tesla has around their approach to the supply chain are things everyone can learn from.

Greg White (32:37):

Yeah, yeah. Agreed.

Scott Luton (32:38):

Agreed. Greg, why don’t you comment on that?

Greg White (32:41):

Well, I mean I, sorry, I’m gonna hammer this 0.1 more time. And that is, even if you don’t, even if you aren’t the scale of Tesla or Johnson and Johnson, even they started with relatively unsophisticated approaches to the advanced techniques that they now use. So do something to quote my great-uncle, do something if you do it wrong is my suggestion. And because you can scale down what these companies are doing to be applicable to you, you don’t have to use the exact same techniques or technologies that they’re using to get there. Just try to meet the same goals. Yeah, ok. Enough said on that point. And then the other is the fluidity of this is every year is so fascinating to me. I think Tesla gets a bad rap because in truth all EV manufacturing is very not green. So we talk about that on the show a lot, right? We’re scraping the crust off the earth for rare earth minerals. We’re using slave labor for cobalt and that’s everyone who’s doing anything to do with batteries or semiconductors. It’s not unique to Tesla. So they get a bit of a rap, bad rap on esg. But, but I think the other thing to hear is the, because it is so fluid, I did not realize that this was, that Microsoft leapt in at 10, was that last year?

Mike Griswold (34:12):

That happened last year? That was our first year, yeah. Yeah. Okay.

Greg White (34:16):

I guess I, I do recall that now from from talking about it last year. But the ability or even maybe just the willingness to share what you’re doing is really, really important to being able to have someone identify that you have an excellent supply chain. And I think that is something that’s really applicable to anyone, whether they are trying to get into this thing, which is, I agree, you should never try to agree. What is it people say, aim for the stars, settle for the moon, aim for the stars, settle for the top 25. I think you really have to have that perspective. But I think it’s really important for companies to, to apply their respective gifts to get their supply chain to a better state. Look, supply chain is a lot like golf. No, we didn’t just merge with the Saudi is supply chain is like golf in that even at your best, there is always at least one shot that you could’ve done better. You could have been two strokes better, right? On any given day, you’re never at the end of evolving your supply chain. And I think that’s important for people to recognize. And I think this rate ranking becomes not just a recognition but also an encouragement for people to realize that you have to constantly evolve your supply chain to maintain excellence in this. Particularly as we’ve heard people hearkening back to the days when everything was normal before and hoping things go back to normal so that they can start ignoring their supply chain again. Those days are over not gonna happen.

Scott Luton (35:49):

Right? That’s right.

Greg White (35:50):

And it’s not, it’s they’re over for one reason. And that is awareness because every Tom, Dick and Harry knows supply chain now. Ever since what Scott? Ever since what?

Scott Luton (36:01):

Toilet. Toilet toilet paper. Yeah. Great. Toilet paper 2020.

Greg White (36:04):

Yes. I gotta ask your great all of us aware of supply chain, right?

Scott Luton (36:08):

And that’s a blessing. Hey were you sharing, was that Uncle Skinny’s?

Greg White (36:12):

That was uncle. Uncle Skinny? Yes. That’s my great uncle. Yes.

Scott Luton (36:15):

Just do something neem if you do it wrong.

Greg White (36:16):

David. David Allen White is his actual, no, I’m sorry, that’s, sorry. That’s my grandfather. Brian David White. Okay. Uncle skin.

Scott Luton (36:26):

AKA skinny. Yeah. Love that. Yeah. Real, real quick. Go ahead.

Mike Griswold (36:31):

If I could just react to Greg Scott, which I think we’re spot on. I, I think no one has time to do this, but I, if I had one wish I would love people in the anti-green moment to actually print out the top 25, do it, double-sided the global note, right? And have someone go through and just redact the company names first and then read it and say, Hey, could I do this? And if the answer is yes, then it doesn’t matter that it’s a p and g or a Unilever, it’s I can do this. Or you might read it and say, you know what, we’re not ready for that. But I, but to your point Greg, I think too many people get locked in on the company name and what they did and make a judgment based on their size relative to their own size and say we can never do that. So if you could somehow read a redacted version and just read what these companies are doing and then make a value judgment just based on the information that this company is doing, I think we’d be all be better off. Mm.

Scott Luton (37:35):

So you’re saying sometimes redactions can be good things. I like that Mike.

Mike Griswold (37:38):

Exactly. Yes. I like that.

Greg White (37:40):

Yes. I love that idea. I great practice trying to create any work for you Mike. Well it’s not work for you now anyway, so who cares? No. Yeah, exactly. Wouldn’t it be cool to put it out without names and then fill in Yeah, the names.

Scott Luton (37:57):

Oh yes. Yeah, that’s cool. So we need like a workbook, a top 25 workbook. That’d be cool. We need now. And that would really help to vent it and some other comments here that helped operationalize all the research and the findings and the expertise. But nevertheless, alright, for the sake of time, we’ve got to get, keep moving forward. And Mike, I think we wanna touch on next is of all these key takeaways you’ve been talking about, there’s two new ones that were new observations from all the research this year. Tell us more about those two.

Mike Griswold (38:27):

Yeah, so each year we write, when we write the note at the beginning of the note, we put in this idea of the macro transit. This year we had three and there’s two that I wanna touch on. The first is around identifying and seizing new opportunities. And this is really through the lens of how does the supply chain navigate the tension between, I want my supply chain to drive commercial innovation. I want my supply chain to be able to drive growth with the tension that our friends and the finance area bring, which is, hey, I hate risk, right? I want us to be as riskless as possible. And there’s that natural tension between those two, right? Because in order to support commercial innovation by definition means there’s going to be some level of risk. So when we look at our supply chain, top 25 companies and even to our, to what we’ve been talking about even farther down the list, right? It’s that ability to balance that supportive innovation with the risk tolerance that the organization has. How do I keep my C F O happy? That’s definitely a, an emerging dynamic for supply chains. I think to Greg, your earlier comment, right? During the great toilet paper, sh shortage supply chains were being asked to be innovative and support growth in, in any way they could.

Mike Griswold (39:50):

Yeah. And we got pretty, and we got pretty good at that. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Now I think as we go back to uh, the way I, like you described it, whatever normal is gonna be, CFOs are now saying, yeah, that was great, but like any risk. So we gotta be able to navigate that. The second is we’re seeing just a general transformation of how and around how organizations are working, right? We’ve touched on that here. I think a couple of different times around working remotely and the byproduct of that people were still able to function work still got done even if I was doing at home in my pajamas, right? So that employee value proposition is gonna have to remain front and center in, in people’s talent strategy as they think about how are we gonna keep people engaged? But we also cannot ignore the fact that technology is coming into this discussion and technology, whether it’s machine learning, AI chat, G B T, generative ai, whatever we wanna call that.

Mike Griswold (40:53):

All of that is now making its way into the workforce. And we need to figure out how do we combine those things more from, we talk a lot about an augmentation strategy. How does the technology augment decisions? But how do we as people augment the technology so that the technology can at some point learn and make better decisions? So when you read through the top 25 research, you’ll see plenty of examples of things that frankly even our leaders are still wrestling with. Still trying to find that balance of how we work. Still trying to find that balance of the role of technology. And this is definitely an area where I think, Greg, you talked a little bit earlier about people sharing with each other. It’s an, it’s depending on whether you wanna count the Gartner part and the peer part. That’s 50% of the methodology is are you sharing stories and are you learning and helping people learn from each other.

Mike Griswold (41:54):

Mm-hmm. <affirmative> and it’s this transforming how we work that I think is probably the biggest area that we can learn from each other around how we continue to build out our supply chain workforce.

Scott Luton (42:05):

Yeah, well said Greg, why don’t you respond to that?

Greg White (42:09):

Well, on the buy sell spectrum, I’m buying that 100%. Yeah. I mean not, there’s so much good stuff there, right? Which is, it is to share all this amongst ourselves, right? And set your goals high. And I don’t know, to me, Mike, what you’re saying is that there is so much interconnectivity in supply chain that we have to be connected internally, right? In the supply chain area, whatever you wanna call that because that’s the vast area in and of itself. But amongst our fellow executives and leaders and operators in the company, but then also outside our own enterprise into others. To me it makes me think of all of those complexities, which goes to the word you use frequently, which is orchestration. How do you manage all of that to make sure that your supply chain works effectively? And again, I it all, this make just makes me think what a great, I’m sorry, I’m still gonna go back to your, take the names off thing. What a great example this is and how you can use this to help you improve your business. I think there is a lot of, I don’t know, I just see this as a great learning opportunity every single year to be able to adapt it as, as you were talking I was thinking about how could companies improve their operations, as you said, such as they are today, not necessarily at the scale or the level that, that even the top 25 are doing and improve their business even just incrementally. I just keep going back to that.

Mike Griswold (43:45):

Yep. I, I think the, the challenge that we run into, I think as a supply chain profession and it manifested itself in our keynotes this year, our keynote this year for our symposium both in Orlando and Barcelona, but was heavily focused on a message around people and what people want out of their job. How do we as supply chain leaders recognize, acknowledge and address that. And one of the things we talk about is this idea of collective potential, right? Our supply chains are much better off collectively than we are with any individual one person or won’t. And I think overall that message, if I look at the feedback we got on the keynote, I would say overall the message was very positively received. But I know having been in that room that there were supply chain people saying, I don’t wanna talk about people, I wanna talk about boxes, I wanna talk about machines, right?

Mike Griswold (44:57):

PE people will show up when I tell ’em to show up and they’ll work when I tell ’em to work. And if they don’t then we’ll deal with it. And that attitude is just horrible. It’s not gonna work. Right? And the companies that figure out how to navigate this idea of collective potential, I think are gonna be so farther ahead than companies that are still thinking in the sixties and seventies around how people have to work. We’re gonna have, I think at some point a huge talent divide between those that have all the talent because they recognize this and those that are continually scrambling to find talent, which is then gonna lead to things like operational issues, productivity issues, output issues that will be able to directly, I think lay to their people strategy or lack thereof. Yep.

Greg White (45:51):


Scott Luton (45:51):

So lemme get a word in here. Edgewise a a lot of brilliance between, all right and Greg the day. Alright, I gotta share couple, first off, I gotta go back to Greg’s word of orchestration that came up yesterday and I learned something new. The conductor that leads the symphony, that little sticky holds that is called a baton. A baton. Yeah. And so more and more aren’t supply chain practitioners, they should be issued batons cause it’s more and more about beautiful word that Greg mentioned. Orchestration. Orchestration. Okay. Natalie shares, combine, just do something with small incremental changes, helps to navigate the risk tolerance. In many ways, that’s change management and critical for innovative supply chains. Love that. That’s like Natalie and Arthur says, tech has to be used appropriately. It is not a solution without people and systems that know what they are doing. Good stuff there. And Gino, good to see you as well.

Scott Luton (46:45):

All right. So Greg and Mike, we’re coming to the end of our time here today and I hate that.

Greg White (46:50):

Ready? I know. Can you believe it? We blink.

Scott Luton (46:53):

But a lot of good stuff here. And folks, again, we want to encourage you, Greg and Mike both have spoken not just this year but for years. The value of diving in to all this research that’s out there to be consumed and put into practice and to drive better results at your organization. So check out the link and get your own copy. Mike. How can beyond that link to get it top 25? And I want to echo what Greg said on the front end. Big kudos to all of your leadership with this top 25 and just the giving. Mm-hmm <affirmative> given that has helped so many people and organizations from startups to big enterprises. So hats off to you and your team. Cause we know we don’t know everything, but know a good idea about all the tremendous work that goes into producing something that’s celebrated each year. So hats off to you, but Mike, how can folks connect with you and the Gartner team that’s on the move?

Mike Griswold (47:47):

Yeah, certainly LinkedIn. You can email me at mike duck griswold We also published yesterday the European top 15. So we produce, in total three geographical notes there. There’s the global note that published Europeans. So this is companies that are based in Europe. And then in July we will have an Asia Pacific cut. So companies based in Asia Pacific. And then over the next probably six to eight weeks, by the end of July, we will have produced all of our industry cuts. So for example, we’ll produce the top 10 list of the top 10 consumer products companies and then we’ll have write-ups of each of those companies as well. So again, Greg, to your point, it’s a great way to hear what other companies and other industries are doing, see what works for you and find some of those best practices that are transferable to your organization.

Scott Luton (48:41):

Well said, Mike. Uh, and Greg, don’t get, don’t go anywhere, Greg, cause I’m gonna get your final takeaway, but I want a bid a due to the one and only Mike Griswold, we love your monthly appearances and thanks for taking time out to share so much over the last hour or so. So big appreciate what you do, Mike.

Mike Griswold (48:57):

My pleasure. Great to see everyone and talk to you next month.

Scott Luton (49:00):

Sounds great. Thank you Mike Griswold. Thanks Mike. Take care. All right, Greg, man, I’m gonna, before I get your last, your Kiki key, key, key takeaway, I wanna share the iconic pyramid once more. Of course we’ve got the master’s category over here, Amazon, apple, p and g, Unilever, and then of course the pyramid. And Greg, we’ve interviewed many leaders, just about a leader from each of these organizations minus maybe Tesla. Tesla hasn’t joined us just yet. I can’t wait to get Greg and Elon Musk together. We’ll see how that plays out. But Greg, yeah, what Mike brought it by the truckload once more here today. He’s got a knack for that, for doing that, right? An established track record. But if you had to pick one thing that came up in the conversation today, just one thing that you challenge people to take, put it in a headlock, really take it to heart. What would that one thing be? Greg White,

Greg White (49:57):

Find yourself in this list. That’s, I mean, that’s it. And I don’t mean literally find yourself, and I don’t mean even find that model, but as he stated early on, find someone who is attacking the same goals or same problems that you have in your supply chain and use that as a model. What is it they say? Oh my gosh, copying. What is, well, I’m trying to think of the word copying is the best form of flattery. What is that?

Scott Luton (50:28):


Greg White (50:29):

Imitation. The best form of flattery. It’s also a really, really good means of advancement, right? Because if it has worked for somebody else and the scenario is close enough to the environment that you operate in or the goals that you have, why not use the ability, right? There are no new jokes, there are only new audiences, right? I mean, comedy is one of those things that is constantly copied. So, ok, that was s by the way, so I stole that. I thought I was comedy.

Scott Luton (51:00):

I thought that might have been another uncle skin. I love when he makes appearances. Got him in our,

Greg White (51:05):

yeah, I’ve got a lot of ’em.

Scott Luton (51:07):

Yeah. Yeah. All right. So Greg White, what a great, great way to close and one of the thought folks, what you heard Greg and Mike kind of touch on this a couple times throughout, um, is the folks that fell off last year’s list, dive into that. Dive into the story there. Gartner doesn’t, I don’t think that they don’t provide a whole bunch of detail beyond the top 25, right? But they do provide some, you can go back and look at last year’s, you can do your own research. But find those, some of those stories as well. I think there’ll be some valuable observations made. And yes, Natalie shamelessly still ideas. I’m with you. That’s how some of the best companies have been built. Okay. Greg White, what a great show. I hope you have continued to have a wonderful trip across a beautiful, many beautiful countries.

Greg White (51:53):


Scott Luton (51:53):

Godspeed and safe travels to you and the family. Thank you.

Greg White (51:56):

And Josh Goody. Yes, I am. I, I mean, unless you’re seeing something I’ve adapted through the, the time changed pretty well. I have now been here two weeks in one day, so only about another two weeks to go actually am doing some work today was a Scott, today was a crazy day at a 6:00 AM meeting here, which is a 9:00 PM meeting on the west coast where okay Josh lives. And then had a nice big gap to catch up on everything else while the world woke up or while the western world woke up. And then have been going back to back since for about six hours now. So it’s been, well a long day, but I went to bed early last night planning good for it.

Scott Luton (52:42):

So the world better watch out when Greg White goes to bed early. Better watch out that next lot.

Greg White (52:46):

better angle. That’s, that is rare, but yes.

Scott Luton (52:49):

Alright, way good on you. Keep doing, keep having a wonderful trip and the creating all the good work and outcomes that you are associated with. Always a pleasure to knock out these conversations with you, Greg.

Greg White (53:01):

Likewise. Thank you. I’m sorry Mike didn’t, Mike and I didn’t give you more time to talk. I know what you have to, what you have to say is really valuable here. And I think it, I think sometimes people don’t get to see that cuz I I and our guests is who you feature. But you have great ideas and insights around supply chain and that’s what makes the magic here work is that you’re not a talking head man. You’re a real live practitioner who’s been there and done it,

Scott Luton (53:30):

man. I appreciate that. Yeah, I appreciate that Greg. It really means a lot. But you know what, that’s okay cuz I get inside track, I get to sit back and observe and take my 17 pages of notes.

Greg White (53:41):

17 pages of notes.

Scott Luton (53:42):

That’s right. And that’s how we’ve been building this thing, right? By rubbing elbows. Do we need to do need?

Greg White (53:49):

I’m sorry. Thank you. That’s great. We need to do a trivia on Scott Luton and one of the questions would be, how many pages of notes does Scott Luton take?

Scott Luton (53:59):

Well, who knows?

Greg White (54:00):

We out episode 500 on, did you know that it’s gone up by four pages?

Scott Luton (54:05):

Oh has it really?

Greg White (54:06):

Four episode 500. It was 13 pages in the notes and around episode 500 you started taking 17 pages of notes. So you are actually learning more as you go, which makes you a great example to our fellow practitioner.

Scott Luton (54:20):

There’s gotta be an AI play there cuz man, I’m carpal tunnel in my wrist and all that’s right man. But hey, we gotta break out the trivia game. We’ll have to do that again soon and include all the fine folks here from Gino Benke, Natalie, Arthur, you name it, of course Josh goody we to join us. But hey, whatever, uh, great episode today. Really appreciate it, Greg. But folks, it’s all about putting these ideas and these insights into actions all about deeds, not words. So on that note, whatever you do, on behalf of our entire team here at Scott Luton, challenge you to do good, to give forward and to be the change. And we’ll see you next time, right back here. That’s supply chain now. Thanks everybody.

Intro/Outro (55:01):

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Featured Guests

Mike Griswold serves as Vice President Analyst with Gartner’s Consumer Value Chain team, focusing on the retail supply chain. He is responsible for assisting supply leaders in understanding and implementing demand-driven supply chain principles that improve the performance of their supply chain. Mr. Griswold joined Gartner through the company’s acquisition of AMR. Previous roles include helping line-of-business users align corporate strategy with their supply chain process and technology initiatives. One recent study published by a team of Gartner analysts, including Mike Griswold is Retail Supply Chain Outlook 2019: Elevating the Consumer’s Shopping Experience. Mr. Griswold holds a BS in Business Management from Canisius College and an MBA from the Whittemore School of Business & Economics at the University of New Hampshire. Learn more about Gartner here:


Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

Greg White

Principal & Host

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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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Kevin Brown

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Jose Miguel Irarrazaval

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Vicki White


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

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Allison Giddens


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

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

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Billy Taylor


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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Tandreia Bellamy


Tandreia Bellamy retired as the Vice President of Industrial Engineering for UPS Supply Chain Solutions which included the Global Logistics, Global Freight Forwarding and UPS Freight business units. She was responsible for operations strategy and planning, asset management, forecasting, and technology tool development to optimize sustainable efficiency while driving world class service.

Tandreia held similar positions at the business unit level for Global Logistics and Global Freight forwarding. As the leader of the Global Logistics engineering function, she directed all industrial engineering activies related to distribution, service parts logistics (post-sales support), and mail innovations (low cost, light weight shipping partnership with the USPS). Between these roles Tandreia helped to establish the Advanced Technology Group which was formed to research and develop cutting edge solutions focused on reducing reliance on manual labor.

Tandreia began her career in 1986 as a part-time hourly manual package handling employee. She spent the great majority of her career in the small package business unit which is responsible for the pick-up, sort, transport and delivery of packages domestically. She held various positions in Industrial Engineering, Marketing, Inside and On-road operations in Central Florida before transferring to Atlanta for a position in Corporate Product Development and Corporate Industrial Engineering. Tandreia later held IE leadership roles in Nebraska, Minnesota and Chicago. In her final role in small package she was an IE VP responsible for all aspects of IE, technology support and quality for the 25 states on the western half of the country.
Tandreia is currently a Director for the University of Central Florida (UCF) Foundation Board and also serves on their Dean’s Advisory Board for the College of Engineering and Computer Science. Previously Tandreia served on the Executive Advisory Board for Virginia Tech’s IE Department and the Association for Supply Chain Management. She served on the Board of Trustees for ChildServ (a Chicago child and family services non-profit) and also served on the Texas A&M and Tuskegee Engineering Advisory Boards. In 2006 she was named Business Advisor of the Year by INROADS, in 2009 she was recognized as a Technology All-Star at the Women of Color in STEM conference and in 2019 she honored as a UCF Distinguished Aluma by the Department of Industrial Engineering and Management Systems.

Tandreia holds a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering from Stanford University and a master’s degree in Industrial Engineering and Management Systems from UCF. Her greatest accomplishment, however, is being the proud mother of two college students, Ruby (24) and Anthony (22).

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Marty Parker


Marty Parker serves as both the CEO & Founder of Adæpt Advising and an award-winning Senior Lecturer (Teaching Professor) in Supply Chain and Operations Management at the University of Georgia. He has 30 years of experience as a COO, CMO, CSO (Chief Strategy Officer), VP of Operations, VP of Marketing and Process Engineer. He founded and leads UGA’s Supply Chain Advisory Board, serves as the Academic Director of UGA’s Leaders Academy, and serves on multiple company advisory boards including the Trucking Profitability Strategies Conference, Zion Solutions Group and Carlton Creative Company.

Marty enjoys helping people and companies be successful. Through UGA, Marty is passionate about his students, helping them network and find internships and jobs. He does this through several hundred one-on-one zoom meetings each year with his students and former students. Through Adæpt Advising, Marty has organized an excellent team of affiliates that he works with to help companies grow and succeed. He does this by helping c-suite executives improve their skills, develop better leaders, engage their workforce, improve processes, and develop strategic plans with detailed action steps and financial targets. Marty believes that excellence in supply chain management comes from the understanding the intersection of leadership, culture, and technology, working across all parts of the organization to meet customer needs, maximize profit and minimize costs.

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Laura Lopez

Marketing Coordinator

Laura Lopez serves as our Supply Chain Now Marketing Coordinator. She graduated from Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Occidente in Mexico with a degree in marketing. Laura loves everything digital because she sees the potential it holds for companies in the marketing industry. Her passion for creativity and thinking outside the box led her to pursue a career in marketing. With experience in fields like accounting, digital marketing, and restaurants, she clearly enjoys taking on challenges. Laura lives the best of both worlds - you'll either catch her hanging out with her friends soaking up the sun in Mexico or flying out to visit her family in California!

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Jake Barr


An acknowledged industry leader, Jake Barr now serves as CEO for BlueWorld Supply Chain Consulting, providing support to a cross section of Fortune 500 companies such as Cargill, Caterpillar, Colgate, Dow/Dupont, Firmenich, 3M, Merck, Bayer/Monsanto, Newell Brands, Kimberly Clark, Nestle, PepsiCo, Pfizer, Sanofi, Estee Lauder and Coty among others. He's also devoted time to engagements in public health sector work with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. At P&G, he managed the breakthrough delivery of an E2E (End to End) Planning Transformation effort, creating control towers which now manage the daily business globally. He is recognized as the architect for P&G’s demand driven supply chain strategy – referenced as a “Consumer Driven Supply Chain” transformation. Jake began his career with P&G in Finance in Risk Analysis and then moved into Operations. He has experience in building supply network capability globally through leadership assignments in Asia, Latin America, North America and the Middle East. He currently serves as a Research Associate for MIT; a member of Supply Chain Industry Advisory Council; Member of Gartner’s Supply Chain Think Tank; Consumer Goods “League of Leaders“; and a recipient of the 2015 - 2021 Supply Chain “Pro’s to Know” Award. He has been recognized as a University of Kentucky Fellow.

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Marcia Williams


Marcia Williams, Managing Partner of USM Supply Chain, has 18 years of experience in Supply Chain, with expertise in optimizing Supply Chain-Finance Planning (S&OP/ IBP) at Large Fast-Growing CPGs for greater profitability and improved cash flows. Marcia has helped mid-sized and large companies including Lindt Chocolates, Hershey, and Coty. She holds an MBA from Michigan State University and a degree in Accounting from Universidad de la Republica, Uruguay (South America). Marcia is also a Forbes Council Contributor based out of New York, and author of the book series Supply Chains with Maria in storytelling style. A recent speaker’s engagement is Marcia TEDx Talk: TEDxMSU - How Supply Chain Impacts You: A Transformational Journey.

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Luisa Garcia

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Luisa Garcia is a passionate Marketer from Lagos de Moreno based in Aguascalientes. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing from Universidad Autonoma de Aguascalientes, Mexico. She specializes in brand development at any stage, believing that a brand is more than just a name or image—it’s an unforgettable experience. Her expertise helps brands achieve their dreams and aspirations, making a lasting impact. Currently working at Vector Global Logistics in the Marketing team and as podcast coordinator of Logistics With Purpose®. Luisa believes that purpose-driven decisions will impact results that make a difference in the world.

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Astrid Aubert

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Astrid Aubert was born in Guadalajara, she is 39 years old and has had the opportunity to live in many places. She studied communication and her professional career has been in Trade Marketing for global companies such as Pepsico and Mars. She currently works as Marketing Director Mexico for Vector Global Logistics. She is responsible for internal communications and marketing strategy development for the logistics industry. She is a mother of two girls, married and lives in Monterrey. She defines herself as a creative and innovative person, and enjoys traveling and cooking a lot.

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Constantine Limberakis


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

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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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Greg White

Principal & Host

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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Tyler Ward

Director of Sales

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

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

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

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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 a veteran of the US Army and cofounder of the Guam Human Rights Initiative. She is currently in the Doctor of Criminal Justice program at Saint Leo University. She is passionate about combating human trafficking and has spent the last decade conducting training for military personnel and the local community.

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Amanda Luton

Vice President, Production

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

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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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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

Director, Customer Experience

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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Mary Kate Love

Chief of Staff & Host

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

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

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Joshua Miranda

Marketing Specialist

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

Donna Krache

Director of Communications and Executive Producer

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

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