All industries must handle a certain degree of complexity, but for companies in the energy industry, companies that work directly with the government, that complexity is compounded – not only by compliance expectations but by constant change. Clemencia Vera is the Vice President of Finance at NineDot Energy. Although she started her career in traditional accounting and finance, she is now purposefully staying in the energy industry. Listen in as she speaks with host Kevin L. Jackson – in person at SAP Sapphire in Orlando, Florida – about how her team is combining frameworks and flexibility to continue their growth trajectory.
Welcome to Digital Transformers, the show that connects you with what you need to build, manage, and operate your digital supply chain. Join your host in a timely discussion on new and future business models with industry leading executives. The show will reveal global customer expectations, real world deployment challenges, and the value of advanced business technologies like artificial intelligence, blockchain, and robotic process engineering. And now we bring you digital transformers.
Kevin L. Jackson (00:32):
Hello everyone. It’s Kevin L. Jackson of Digital Transformers. We’re here on the road at Orlando at SAP Sapphire, having the opportunity to meet some of their leading customers who have been leveraging S four HANA in order to implement digital transformation in their companies. Clemencia, how you doing today?
Clemencia Vera (00:57):
I’m doing great, thank you.
Kevin L. Jackson (00:58):
Oh, thanks for joining me here. Can you tell me a little bit a about, uh, you, you,
Clemencia Vera (01:03):
I’ve been with nine dot a year exactly. Uhhuh to, to the day. Um, and it’s been a wonderful journey, uh, with them and developing the entire finance function for them.
Kevin L. Jackson (01:11):
Wow. What prepared you for this? Where did you, uh, you know, you must have had a pretty successful career to get to where you are.
Clemencia Vera (01:19):
<laugh>. Thank you. I’ve had a lot of great opportunities. Um, my, my career started in the typical accounting and finance space. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, and moved into energy, uh, by accident, I say, and I’m purposefully staying in it now, <laugh>. So I had the pleasure of working with, uh, Brookfield most recently and was part of their digital transformation initiatives. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, and worked with a lot of world class collaborators and, um, saw what it takes to create a greenfield space of technology and why it’s important to, not just the digital footprint, but for the operations of the organization.
Kevin L. Jackson (01:56):
How does, how does this really been affected by the transition and move, uh, towards green energy, uh, with respect to your customers, the goals of the organization and, and how you manage the, the, the finances?
Clemencia Vera (02:13):
Yeah. We’re, we’re a purpose driven industry, so we’re, we’re lucky in that sense. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, but we are very complex and even at a young stage, like my organization, yeah. We’re, we’re only a couple of years old, but we’re small and complicated very quickly. And what we need is to really start to build a foundation for growing that organization and having tools that help us with agility and scalability that will prepare us to go from a team of 10 to a team of 50 and how to use wow. People in a smart way have where they can add value and really leverage the automation cap capabilities that exist with products like, um, Ana,
Kevin L. Jackson (02:56):
So your, your business model must be to be really intimate with your customers and, and clients. How, and you leverage us for Hana from SAP for that. How does it help you in, in, in that area?
Clemencia Vera (03:09):
I think being able to have really reliable data that we can call upon and have comfort and confidence when we speak with customers and give them visibility and transparency into what we’re doing for them, how we’re doing it. And finance is, is my area of expertise. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So get, knowing that I am a hundred percent sure and, and the reliability of what we’re giving them and, um, what they’re ultimately looking for us is really helpful in developing that co, uh, relationship with them, especially in early stages when we’re just meeting them for the first time.
Kevin L. Jackson (03:43):
Well, you said you have a very, you know, complex and it sounds really complex of what you’re doing, but you must have a lot of partners that you, you work with. How does this, uh, sort of fold into your digital transformation plan?
Clemencia Vera (04:00):
We, we are lucky that we have so much support right now mm-hmm. <affirmative> in the government space and in the policy space. There’s also still a lot of questions. And so having, having the ability to use something that’s very agile when we have guidance from, um, the government at X mm-hmm. But tomorrow can be Y <laugh> or maybe it’s Y 1.2.
Kevin L. Jackson (04:25):
Yeah. The government doesn’t really, uh, tend to not change. They change things often, don’t they?
Clemencia Vera (04:30):
They do. They do. And so I feel really good that we’re building a foundation in the finance area that we can pivot if we need to, but we’re still using best in class standard solutions out of the box that aren’t gonna require a high level of customization later mm-hmm. <affirmative> to meet our needs. And so for me, that’s important because I know that I can take my team and we can be self-reliant in a way, having those partners that help us get there and that help us continue to move, but that we’re not, we’re not stuck with a product that won’t be able to move with us.
Kevin L. Jackson (05:07):
You mentioned government, the first thing that popped in my mind is compliance. Because if you’re working with anything, it has to do with, with the government, the, the very first thing they’re gonna ask is, how are you compliant with X, Y, Z? Um, I could imagine in the financial space that could be nerve wracking
Clemencia Vera (05:25):
<laugh>. Absolutely. Absolutely. I think for, for me, that’s one of the reasons that complexity stands out in, in my space. Yeah. Because it’s complexity and compliance. It’s complexity in transactions, it’s, uh, complexity and execution. So when you are dealing with that many variables, it’s so important to be able to have a reliable framework and backbone of the organization to be able to, um, drive the business that you’re trying to do for the purpose that you’re trying to do it, to get the customer’s needs met that you’re ultimately trying to do at the end of the day.
Kevin L. Jackson (06:02):
So this, this must, um, actually mean a lot with respect to your relationship with SAP and how you leverages for hana. When, when changes come down the pike, um, how does that affect your use of, of the software, uh, and your relationship with sap? Is it something that Yeah. Causes friction? <laugh>? I can,
Clemencia Vera (06:27):
Yeah. No, it’s, it’s, uh, it’s a good point because I think the, the partnership with, uh, with sap Oh, okay. It’s super important. They, I think mutually we understand that we need different things. Yeah. But we need to come together and communicate at the right time with the right cadence. And so communication is very important to me with both SAP and our external third party partners that also help us with implementing the different products that we’re looking at for, for, um, the organization. Uh, so it, it can get, there can be friction mm-hmm. <affirmative>, but I think having that well established line of communication and knowing that we’re in it together is really what helps us drive forward and kind of prevent those hiccups. And when you, when the hiccups come up, you work through them.
Kevin L. Jackson (07:15):
Yeah. Like I said, it’s, um, as long as you have a partner that you can work with, it seems like no challenge is really insurmountable.
Clemencia Vera (07:24):
I agree. I agree. That’s very core to who nine.is as well. We, we are a team environment, and I think anything that you approach with that mentality, and we do that with, with sap mm-hmm. <affirmative> with any other partners that we work with very closely. It’s, uh, it’s not a one man show. And so it’s really gonna, it takes, it takes the partnerships that we’ve developed and cultivated to get us to what we need to do
Kevin L. Jackson (07:48):
From a geographic point of view. Where does Nine Dot operate?
Clemencia Vera (07:52):
We’re New York centered. Okay. So all of our projects right now at the moment in Pipeline is in New York City. We’re urban focused and, um, one of the leaders in New York City right now with energy storage, uh, products, uh, and projects that are hopefully coming online, um, in the coming years. So it’s, um, a long term investment and commitment to the city of New York. And, um, I’m very proud of that, living in the city and knowing a little bit more when I turned on my lights. What’s going on behind the scenes? <laugh>?
Kevin L. Jackson (08:24):
Yeah. I mean, I used to live in Manhattan for a while and worked on, uh, at JP Morgan Chase, but, um, so, uh, I really enjoy living in the city, <laugh>, to be honest. But that’s very high pace. And New York is actually known for leaning forward in the, in, in energy, um, is at a very, um, high stress business environment that you’re, you’re operating in. They, they must expect a lot from you.
Clemencia Vera (08:51):
It, it, it can be, um, it, it can be stressful. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> and it’s, it’s stressful because there’s so many components to what we’re doing. And, um, I guess back to the partnership part, right. Point of view, we have so many different partners, both within ourselves, within the city of New York, external to New York, private public sector, individuals that we work with. Um, so the pace is fast mm-hmm. <affirmative>, but we are very centered in the values that we have at the organization, and we like to think that we are kind of the innovators in the space for the city. And it’s a, it’s a driver for a lot of the people that I work with and work alongside. So it’s, uh, it makes the pace a little more bearable.
Kevin L. Jackson (09:32):
<laugh>, do you consider yourself a born in the cloud company, or,
Clemencia Vera (09:36):
Absolutely. Absolutely. I, I had the pleasure of seeing what that, what that looks like in an organization. We did. We had a green greenfield space. Yeah. So, um, IM driving that conversation in the organization and really posing a lot of questions to how we wanna do things and how we wanna innovate. Obviously in the finance space, that’s where we’re starting. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, and that’s a very logical place. We, we went from nothing to sap, and it can be a little jarring, uh, if you are not used to that type of structured environment and tools and, um, uh, partners that to work with. But I think that everybody’s been very open and receptive to seeing what does digital mean for nine point. And, uh, it’s a journey that we’re, we’re on right now. <laugh>,
Kevin L. Jackson (10:24):
Clemencia Vera (10:24):
Kevin L. Jackson (10:26):
Yes. Say so. Um, you know, last night I was at a reception and somebody asked me, when you, when someone says sap, what do you think? And one of the first things that sort of jumped in my mind was complexity. How, but if you’re working a complex business like you are, you, you kind of need that complexity,
Clemencia Vera (10:48):
Both of you. Yeah. I, I think, um, I, I share that. I, I do think when, I think sap complexity is a common word, <laugh>, um, but we’re used to it at nine point, I suppose, Uhhuh. So, um, to me it was comforting and knowing that we, we are putting in hard work at the front end and at the beginning to then get to reliable, repeatable processes that will then allow the people that I work with think big and to focus on the ideas and, and the value outside of what the day-to-day is and continue to enhance.
Kevin L. Jackson (11:19):
So as a born in the cloud company, what does digital transformation mean to you? <laugh>, you’re not going from Yeah. You know, a, uh, paper and pencil environment, uh, you know, the legacy type of, of platform. Many people think digital transformation is about going from legacy to some new world. But what does it mean to you? I mean, you’re, you’re, you’re clearly doing it.
Clemencia Vera (11:45):
It’s, uh, maybe, maybe the better term for us is a digital formation.
Kevin L. Jackson (11:49):
Ah, okay. That’s better. I like that term. I
Clemencia Vera (11:51):
Think it’s, uh, we’re lucky that we’re not having to go from something to something else. Uhhuh. It’s also hard to do that because now you’re also combining something that’s very tangible and execution focused. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> with the ideas. And it’s, it’s a marriage of those two things, of being able to have the vision of what you want to build in the organization, and knowing that you have a lot of freedom, but having the framework in place that you’re gonna be able to use to create something from nothing, and really leverage it to scale and to be agile as you’re trying to build a company as well.
Kevin L. Jackson (12:32):
So does the, the structure that SAP sort of, um, overlays your, your ideas and, and your vision is, do you feel that, you know, restricting in any way or restrictive, or is it, um, sort of like, um, a framework, a template that helps you do things better and faster?
Clemencia Vera (12:55):
I like the idea of a framework as a way to describe it, because that’s, that’s really what it, it offers us mm-hmm. <affirmative> and with so much ambiguity when there’s nothing, having something to lay down and work around Right, right. Is, is useful and helpful to, um, not only the people in the finance function, but to the whole team at nine point who is really, we’re relying on each other to be experts in our space. And so having, having SAP help us Yeah. Be good at what we are doing gives us a, a bit of a relief in, in the day-to-day.
Kevin L. Jackson (13:29):
So they truly are a partner to you?
Clemencia Vera (13:31):
They are. They are.
Kevin L. Jackson (13:32):
Okay. So what would be your recommendation for, uh, another company, maybe in the energy field or in a another industry vertical that, uh, trying to maybe transform from a legacy, legacy platform, uh, in order to become all digital? What would be your, your suggestion to them?
Clemencia Vera (13:56):
I would, I would say to really start with understanding what your, what your purpose is for your organization. Okay. What are you trying to accomplish and goal? What’s your goal exactly. What are, who do you wanna be when you grow up and who can help you get there? And really understanding what type of partner you need is key because there’s, there’s a lot of solutions in the space, and there’s a lot of different industries for the energy industry specifically, because we’re so complex. Having a, a solid framework that is very out of the box focused while still allowing you the flexibility to use when you’re young in, in your life lifetime of the org is, is important because it, it brings you, um, a a sense of where you can get to and a path that you can follow at different stages. So understanding that if you are already big, yeah. Then that you’re gonna stay big, likely. But if you are an organization like mine, like nine point where you’re starting very small and hope to become very large, having the foresight to know what those different stages are gonna look like and what you’ll need is gonna be really important to make sure that you’re choosing the right, um, cloud partners, the right implementation partners, and asking yourself the right questions as a business of what’s, what you, what you need and when you’re gonna need it.
Kevin L. Jackson (15:23):
This may be a little, um, I guess off script, but, uh, many people that have tried to go to the cloud, the big issue is not the technology or really the business, but it’s the people, uh, shifting a, a mindset. Yeah. Uh, did you, did you notice this or, uh, as you are trying to, um, yeah. You know, uh, adopt, or not really adopt, but, but formation, uh, uh, digital formation.
Clemencia Vera (15:53):
Yeah. Um, I, I’ve seen it where I am now. I’ve seen it in, in my last, um, uh, roles, uhhuh. And it’s really combining the, the technology people and process together. And you can’t ignore any one of those three from the triangle. And I, I do think that understanding, understanding your people and where they’re coming from helps you guide the conversation how it needs to go. I’m working with individuals that have never done any sort of digital transformation, so making sure that I have that foresight and that I build patients amongst the, the team mm-hmm. <affirmative> is important. Um, so that they have an, an ability to know what’s coming when, and that it’s not all gonna happen overnight. And also focusing on what are our processes. It’s, it’s not the tool that’s gonna solve all of our business complexities. It’s gonna help us to then overcome those complexities through additional processes and putting in, um, opportunities for us to build new ways to do things. So, um, thinking outside the box like nine do likes to do, that’s
Kevin L. Jackson (17:00):
Clemencia Vera (17:00):
Is, huh? That’s exactly, it’s, uh, thinking outside the box is what helps us really leverage all three of those, those things together. But, um, I, I appreciate you bringing that up because it’s, the technology is, is paramount, but without the people and without the processes in place, it’s, it doesn’t, it could be the best solution and it doesn’t work well.
Kevin L. Jackson (17:21):
Wow. I, I love your, your vision and your enthusiasm <laugh> for what is obviously a, a a difficult task and difficult job. So, um, and, and wrapping up, how can their audience, you know, learn more about nine dot, uh, and maybe even reach out, reach out to you and, and learn more about how you have managed to, uh, to, to accomplish these feats?
Clemencia Vera (17:47):
Yeah, absolutely. I, I welcome everyone to visit our, our, uh, webpage and to reach out that way. And I’m always, the, the beauty of being small is every message gets to you <laugh>. So, um, happy to take any questions. And, and I do love talking about it because I’ve, I’ve seen the good, the bad and the ugly, and you get through it and it builds camaraderie amongst your, your team. So it’s a beautiful way to do it.
Kevin L. Jackson (18:11):
But thank you very much for coming by and, uh, spending the time and what obviously is a very, uh, busy week. Absolutely. So, absolutely. Thank you for having me. No, thank you. Uh, learn more about nine do by visiting their website. And, uh, I guess you’re on LinkedIn. That’s
Clemencia Vera (18:28):
Right. I’m on LinkedIn as well.
Kevin L. Jackson (18:29):
Uh, and check out CIA on, uh, LinkedIn. Uh, with that said, uh, thank you very much for, for joining us on Digital Transformers, and we’ll see you at our next opportunity to talk, uh, to a digital transformation or digital formation leader <laugh>. Have a great day.
Thank you for supporting Digital Transformers and for being a part of our global supply chain now community. Please check out all of our email@example.com. Make sure you subscribe to Digital Transformers anywhere you listen to or view the show, and follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram. See you next time on Digital Transformers.
Clemencia Vera is a finance executive and leader with more than 12 years in the energy industry across multiple asset classes, including Oil & Gas, Solar, Wind, Hydro, and Battery Storage. She is experienced in financial statement creation and analysis, SaaS cloud application function design and implementation execution, strategic function process optimization, and both financial and strategic analysis tailored for management decision-making. Clemencia is focused on increasing company value through company-wide process efficiencies and fostering collaboration toward shared goals. Connect with Clemencia on LinkedIn.
Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol
Demo Perez started his career in 1997 in the industry by chance when a relative asked him for help for two just weeks putting together an operation for FedEx Express at the Colon Free Zone, an area where he was never been but accepted the challenge. Worked in all roles possible from a truck driver to currier to a sales representative, helped the brand introduction, market share growth and recognition in the Colon Free Zone, at the end of 1999 had the chance to meet and have a chat with Fred Smith ( FedEx CEO), joined another company in 2018 who took over the FedEx operations as Operations and sales manager, in 2004 accepted the challenge from his company to leave the FedEx operations and business to take over the operation and business of DHL Express, his major competitor and rival so couldn’t say no, by changing completely its operation model in the Free Zone. In 2005 started his first entrepreneurial journey by quitting his job and joining two friends to start a Freight Forwarding company. After 8 months was recruited back by his company LSP with the General Manager role with the challenge of growing the company and make it fully capable warehousing 3PL. By 2009 joined CSCMP and WERC and started his journey of learning and growing his international network and high-level learning. In 2012 for the first time joined a local association ( the Panama Maritime Chamber) and worked in the country’s first Logistics Strategy plan, joined and lead other associations ending as president of the Panama Logistics Council in 2017. By finishing his professional mission at LSP with a company that was 8 times the size it was when accepted the role as GM with so many jobs generated and several young professionals coached, having great financial results, took the decision to move forward and start his own business from scratch by the end of 2019. with a friend and colleague co-founded IPL Group a company that started as a boutique 3PL and now is gearing up for the post-Covid era by moving to the big leagues.
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.
Joshua is a student from Institute of Technology and Higher Education of Monterrey Campus Guadalajara in Communication and Digital Media. His experience ranges from Plug and Play México, DearDoc, and Nissan México creating unique social media marketing campaigns and graphics design. Joshua helps to amplify the voice of supply chain here at Supply Chain Now by assisting in graphic design, content creation, asset logistics, and more. In his free time he likes to read and write short stories as well as watch movies and television series.
Director of Communications and Executive Producer
Donna Krache is a former CNN executive producer who has won several awards in journalism and communication, including three Peabodys. She has 30 years’ experience in broadcast and digital journalism. She led the first production team at CNN to convert its show to a digital platform. She has authored many articles for CNN and other media outlets. She taught digital journalism at Georgia State University and Arizona State University. Krache holds a bachelor’s degree in government from the College of William and Mary and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from the University of New Orleans. She is a serious sports fan who loves the Braves. She is president of the Dave Krache Foundation. Named in honor of her late husband, this non-profit pays fees for kids who want to play sports but whose parents are facing economic challenges.
Vicki has a long history of rising to challenges and keeping things up and running. First, she supported her family’s multi-million dollar business as controller for 12 years, beginning at the age of 17. Then, she worked as an office manager and controller for a wholesale food broker. But her biggest feat? Serving as the chief executive officer of her household, while her entrepreneur husband travelled the world extensively. She fed, nurtured, chaperoned, and chauffeured three daughters all while running a newsletter publishing business and remaining active in her community as a Stephen’s Minister, Sunday school teacher, school volunteer, licensed realtor and POA Board president (a title she holds to this day). A force to be reckoned with in the office, you might think twice before you meet Vicki on the tennis court! When she’s not keeping the books balanced at Supply Chain Now or playing tennis matches, you can find Vicki spending time with her husband Greg, her 4 fur babies, gardening, cleaning (yes, she loves to clean!) and learning new things.
Ben Harris is the Director of Supply Chain Ecosystem Expansion for the Metro Atlanta Chamber. Ben comes to the Metro Atlanta Chamber after serving as Senior Manager, Market Development for Manhattan Associates. There, Ben was responsible for developing Manhattan’s sales pipeline and overall Americas supply chain marketing strategy. Ben oversaw market positioning, messaging and campaign execution to build awareness and drive new pipeline growth. Prior to joining Manhattan, Ben spent four years with the Georgia Department of Economic Development’s Center of Innovation for Logistics where he played a key role in establishing the Center as a go-to industry resource for information, support, partnership building, and investment development. Additionally, he became a key SME for all logistics and supply chain-focused projects. Ben began his career at Page International, Inc. where he drove continuous improvement in complex global supply chain operations for a wide variety of businesses and Fortune 500 companies. An APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP), Ben holds an Executive Master’s degree in Business Administration (EMBA) and bachelor’s degree in International Business (BBA) from the Terry College at the University of Georgia.
Host, The Freight Insider
Prior to joining TeamOne Logistics, Page Siplon served as the Executive Director of the Georgia Center of Innovation for Logistics, the State’s leading consulting resource for fueling logistics industry growth and global competitiveness. For over a decade, he directly assisted hundreds of companies to overcome challenges and capitalize on opportunities related to the movement of freight. During this time, Siplon was also appointed to concurrently serve the State of Georgia as Director of the larger Centers of Innovation Program, in which he provided executive leadership and vision for all six strategic industry-focused Centers. As a frequently requested keynote speaker, Siplon is called upon to address a range of audiences on unique aspects of technology, workforce, and logistics. This often includes topics of global and domestic logistics trends, supply chain visibility, collaboration, and strategic planning. He has also been quoted as an industry expert in publications such as Forbes, Journal of Commerce, Fortune, NPR, Wall Street Journal, Reuters, American Express, DC Velocity, Area Development Magazine, Site Selection Magazine, Inbound Logistics, Modern Material Handling, and is frequently a live special guest on SiriusXM’s Road Dog Radio Show. Siplon is an active industry participant, recognized by DC Velocity Magazine as a “2012 Logistics Rainmaker” which annually identifies the top-ten logistics professionals in the Nation; and named a “Pro to Know” by Supply & Demand Executive Magazine in 2014. Siplon was also selected by Georgia Trend Magazine as one of the “Top 100 Most Influential Georgians” for 2013, 2014, and 2015. He also serves various industry leadership roles at both the State and Federal level. Governor Nathan Deal nominated Siplon to represent Georgia on a National Supply Chain Competitiveness Advisory Committee, where he was appointed to a two-year term by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce and was then appointed to serve as its vice-chairman. At the State level, he was selected by then-Governor Sonny Perdue to serve as lead consultant on the Commission for New Georgia’s Freight and Logistics Task Force. In this effort, Siplon led a Private Sector Advisory Committee with invited executives from a range of private sector stakeholders including UPS, Coca-Cola, The Home Depot, Delta Airlines, Georgia Pacific, CSX, and Norfolk Southern. Siplon honorably served a combined 12 years in the United States Marine Corps and the United States Air Force. During this time, he led the integration of encryption techniques and deployed cryptographic devices for tactically secure voice and data platforms in critical ground-to-air communication systems. This service included support for all branches of the Department of Defense, multiple federal security agencies, and aiding NASA with multiple Space Shuttle launches. Originally from New York, Siplon received both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in electrical and computer engineering with a focus on digital signal processing from the Georgia Institute of Technology. He earned an associate’s degree in advanced electronic systems from the Air Force College and completed multiple military leadership academies in both the Marines and Air Force. Siplon currently lives in Cumming, Georgia (north of Atlanta), with his wife Jan, and two children Thomas (19) and Lily (15).
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Kristi Porter is VP of Sales and Marketing at Vector Global Logistics, a company that is changing the world through supply chain. In her role, she oversees all marketing efforts and supports the sales team in doing what they do best. In addition to this role, she is the Chief Do-Gooder at Signify, which assists nonprofits and social impact companies through copywriting and marketing strategy consulting. She has almost 20 years of professional experience, and loves every opportunity to help people do more good.
Host, 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.
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.
Host, Supply Chain Now
The founder of Logistics Executive Group, Kim Winter delivers 40 years of executive leadership experience spanning Executive Search & Recruitment, Leadership Development, Executive Coaching, Corporate Advisory, Motivational Speaking, Trade Facilitation and across the Supply Chain, Logistics, 3PL, E-commerce, Life Science, Cold Chain, FMCG, Retail, Maritime, Defence, Aviation, Resources, and Industrial sectors. Operating from the company’s global offices, he is a regular contributor of thought leadership to industry and media, is a professional Master of Ceremonies, and is frequently invited to chair international events.
He is a Board member of over a dozen companies throughout APAC, India, and the Middle East, a New Zealand citizen, he holds formal resident status in Australia and the UAE, and is the Australia & New Zealand representative for the UAE Government-owned Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA), the Middle East’s largest Economic Free Zone.
A triathlete and ex-professional rugby player, Kim is a qualified (IECL Sydney) executive coach and the Founder / Chairman of the successful not for profit humanitarian organization, Oasis Africa (www. oasisafrica.org.au), which has provided freedom from poverty through education to over 8000 mainly orphaned children in East Africa’s slums. Kim holds an MBA and BA from Massey & Victoria Universities (NZ).
Host, Logistics with Purpose
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.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Kevin Brown is the Director of Business Development for Vector Global Logistics. He has a dedicated interest in Major Account Management, Enterprise Sales, and Corporate Leadership. He offers 25 years of exceptional experience and superior performance in the sales of Logistics, Supply Chain, and Transportation Management. Kevin is a dynamic, high-impact, sales executive and corporate leader who has consistently exceeded corporate goals. He effectively coordinates multiple resources to solution sell large complex opportunities while focusing on corporate level contacts across the enterprise. His specialties include targeting and securing key accounts by analyzing customer’s current business processes and developing solutions to meet their corporate goals. Connect with Kevin on LinkedIn.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Jose Manuel Irarrazaval es parte del equipo de Vector Global Logistics Chile. José Manuel es un gerente experimentado con experiencia en finanzas corporativas, fusiones y adquisiciones, financiamiento y reestructuración, inversión directa y financiera, tanto en Chile como en el exterior. José Manuel tiene su MBA de la Universidad de Pennsylvania- The Wharton School. Conéctese con Jose Manuel en LinkedIn.
Host, 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Host of Dial P for Procurement
Kelly is the Owner and Managing Director of Buyers Meeting Point and MyPurchasingCenter. She has been in procurement since 2003, starting as a practitioner and then as the Associate Director of Consulting at Emptoris. She has covered procurement news, events, publications, solutions, trends, and relevant economics at Buyers Meeting Point since 2009. Kelly is also the General Manager at Art of Procurement and Business Survey Chair for the ISM-New York Report on Business. Kelly has her MBA from Babson College as well as an MS in Library and Information Science from Simmons College and she has co-authored three books: ‘Supply Market Intelligence for Procurement Professionals’, ‘Procurement at a Crossroads’, and ‘Finance Unleashed’.
Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español
Enrique serves as Managing Director at Vector Global Logistics and believes we all have a personal responsibility to change the world. He is hard working, relationship minded and pro-active. Enrique trusts that the key to logistics is having a good and responsible team that truly partners with the clients and does whatever is necessary to see them succeed. He is a proud sponsor of Vector’s unique results-based work environment and before venturing into logistics he worked for the Boston Consulting Group (BCG). During his time at BCG, he worked in different industries such as Telecommunications, Energy, Industrial Goods, Building Materials, and Private Banking. His main focus was always on the operations, sales, and supply chain processes, with case focus on, logistics, growth strategy, and cost reduction. Prior to joining BCG, Enrique worked for Grupo Vitro, a Mexican glass manufacturer, for five years holding different positions from sales and logistics manager to supply chain project leader in charge of five warehouses in Colombia.
He has an MBA from The Wharton School of Business and a BS, in Mechanical Engineer from the Technologico de Monterrey in Mexico. Enrique’s passions are soccer and the ocean, and he also enjoys traveling, getting to know new people, and spending time with his wife and two kids, Emma and Enrique.
Host of Digital Transformers
Kevin L. Jackson is a globally recognized Thought Leader, Industry Influencer and Founder/Author of the award winning “Cloud Musings” blog. He has also been recognized as a “Top 5G Influencer” (Onalytica 2019, Radar 2020), a “Top 50 Global Digital Transformation Thought Leader” (Thinkers 360 2019) and provides strategic consulting and integrated social media services to AT&T, Intel, Broadcom, Ericsson and other leading companies. Mr. Jackson’s commercial experience includes Vice President J.P. Morgan Chase, Worldwide Sales Executive for IBM and SAIC (Engility) Director Cloud Solutions. He has served on teams that have supported digital transformation projects for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the US Intelligence Community. Kevin’s formal education includes a MS Computer Engineering from Naval Postgraduate School; MA National Security & Strategic Studies from Naval War College; and a BS Aerospace Engineering from the United States Naval Academy. Internationally recognizable firms that have sponsored articles authored by him include Cisco, Microsoft, Citrix and IBM. Books include “Click to Transform” (Leaders Press, 2020), “Architecting Cloud Computing Solutions” (Packt, 2018), and “Practical Cloud Security: A Cross Industry View” (Taylor & Francis, 2016). He also delivers online training through Tulane University, O’Reilly Media, LinkedIn Learning, and Pluralsight. Mr. Jackson retired from the U.S. Navy in 1994, earning specialties in Space Systems Engineering, Carrier Onboard Delivery Logistics and carrier-based Airborne Early Warning and Control. While active, he also served with the National Reconnaissance Office, Operational Support Office, providing tactical support to Navy and Marine Corps forces worldwide.
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!
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.
Principal & CMO, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain Now and TECHquila Sunrise
When rapid-growth technology companies, venture capital and private equity firms are looking for advisory, they call Greg – a founder, board director, advisor and catalyst of disruptive B2B technology and supply chain. An insightful visionary, Greg guides founders, investors and leadership teams in creating breakthroughs to gain market exposure and momentum – increasing overall company esteem and valuation.
Greg is a founder himself, creating Blue Ridge Solutions, a Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader in cloud-native supply chain applications, and bringing to market Curo, a field service management solution. He has also held leadership roles with Servigistics (PTC) and E3 Corporation (JDA/Blue Yonder). As a principal and host at Supply Chain Now, Greg helps guide the company’s strategic direction, hosts industry leader discussions, community livestreams, and all in addition to executive producing and hosting his original YouTube channel and podcast, TEChquila Sunrise.
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.