Supply Chain Now
Episode 1021

I firmly believe every department in the organization should have a supply chain person in it sitting at the table and saying, 'Hey, by the way, I want you guys to be aware of how these decisions are gonna affect this.' We are the mechanics of the world, right?

-Summer Roderick

Episode Summary

The future of the supply chain is in their hands—and they’re here to tell us all about it. Join Scott as he chats with CJ Wallace and Summer Roderick, students from the top-rated University of Tennessee Global Supply Chain Institute, along with Executive Director Shay Scott. Get to know CJ, Summer and Shay and find out what trends they’re tracking, if supply chain practitioners can catch up with best practices from the classroom, what makes the Global Supply Chain Institute so unique and more.

Episode Transcript

Intro/Outro (00:00:03):

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 (00:00:32):

Hey, good morning everybody. Scott Luton with you here on Supply Chain. Now welcome to today’s show. We are continuing our series here that we like to call the Now Generation, where we sit down with students, professionals, and educators from the leading supply chain management programs, really around the world. And we have got an excellent show teed up here today. Now, with that said, we’re not wasting time. We’re gonna die right in. I wanna introduce our panel here today, uh, starting with Dr. Shay Scott, Executive director of the Global Supply Chain Institute at the University of Tennessee. Shay, how are you doing?

Shay Scott (00:01:05):

Doing great, Scott. Pleasure to be with you today. Uh, looking forward to the conversation.

Scott Luton (00:01:09):

We are too, and I’ll tell you and, and make, let’s make sure we talk about how dominated and the Vos football team has been this year. We gotta add that to the, uh, the discussion framework, but great to have you. Um, and you’re joined by a couple of your brightest of the brightest students, been ululating through CJ Wallace, a current graduate student at Tennessee, Also a current supply chain practitioner with the Coca-Cola Company. Cj, how you doing?

CJ Wallace (00:01:35):

I’m good, Scott. How you doing? Thanks for having me.

Scott Luton (00:01:38):

Wonderful. And I, I love that you wore your colors. You’re re your colors. We had a little fun show. Oh, <laugh> <laugh> somewhere. We’ll, we’ll find that, uh, the, the Phil Gold post that I think floating in the river. We’ll talk about that later in the show. Right, <laugh>. Well, great to have you, cj. Thank you, Ann. Uh, Summer Roderick, a current undergraduate student at Tennessee who’s gonna be graduating with a double major in supply chain management and business analytics. Summer. How you doing?

Summer Roderick (00:02:06):

I’m doing great. I’m so excited and looking forward to this

Scott Luton (00:02:10):

Today. We are too. You know, we had a little fun, Pria talking about a recent analytics project you had on, on the, uh, the subject of coffee, which I think we all, uh, really consume a lot of. And I’m not gonna put you on the spot, but you might have some good news you can share with us later in today’s episode. But some are great to have you here today. Thank you. All right. So we got so much to get into, but I wanna start, uh, Shay CJ in summer with, let’s just get to know y’all a little better. Uh, and I wanna start with cj. So cj, tell us, tell us where you grew up and a and after we, you know, uh, dive into that, why supply chain? Why supply chain for you? So where’d you grow up?

CJ Wallace (00:02:48):

So, uh, Scott, I grew up, um, right outside of Atlanta, uh, in the suburb, um, Riverdale, Georgia, Um, basically, um, my whole life, um, curiosity. Um, I like things like everybody else. I like obtaining things and just the curiosity of, um, knowing how these things get to these places, you know, um, kind of what drove me into supply chain itself. Um, years ago after graduating high school, I started off in, uh, warehouse roles. And another thing that got me was, you know, I would always go against management and supervisors or choices that they would make, and I’d be like, you know, why are they making these choices? I would never agree with them. And, you know, it was because I didn’t really have that, uh, background and, and detail of knowing all the intricate ways of why things move the way they move and why decisions are made the way they’re made. So, um, that kind of drove me into wanting to learn more about supply chain itself, which is, uh, what led me to go get my, um, undergrad degree and see where I am now here with Tennessee obtaining my graduates degree.

Scott Luton (00:03:49):

All right. So, uh, a couple, so many things I, I gotta, we’re gonna have to have a couple hours with Ucj. So, uh, first off, Riverdale, Georgia, directionally in metro Atlanta. What, where is that?

CJ Wallace (00:04:01):

Um, it’s on the south side, so it’s, uh, Right, it’s in Clayton County. Okay. It’s, uh, anybody that’s familiar with that. So it’s right outside. It’s, uh, 20 minutes from downtown at most.

Scott Luton (00:04:10):

So, um, what is one thing unique to Riverdale mm-hmm. <affirmative> that’s inseparable from your upbringing, whether it’s, uh, a restaurant, food, sports, whatever,

CJ Wallace (00:04:21):

<laugh>? It’s crazy that you say that, cuz the first thing I was gonna say is it’s a restaurant, uh, in Riverdale, Georgia. Um, it’s called Annie Lords. And the best, I would say, like, maybe the best soul food you have ever tasted. Okay. So definitely if you’re ever in the area, try out, And I will tell you, it’s always a weight. So be prepared, <laugh>.

Scott Luton (00:04:42):

All right. So cj, let’s go. Next time you come back, uh, to Riverdale. What, now? Do you live in the Atlanta

CJ Wallace (00:04:47):

Area? No, now, right now I’m currently located in Douglasville, which is suburb west of Atlanta. So, yeah, I’m on the other side of it now, but I’m still in the Atlanta area. All

Scott Luton (00:04:57):

Right. Well, let’s head down to Riverdale and the grab lunch share waiting line. Hey, I can wait for good food. Um,

CJ Wallace (00:05:03):

Anytime. Scott

Scott Luton (00:05:04):

<laugh>. So the other thing you shared there beyond some of your upbringing is you love the power of asking why. Right. Why, why? And I bet you can ask that question much more powerfully after going through, after eight years at, at the co cola company, and of course going through the University of Tennessee’s supply chain program now as a grad student. So I look forward to revisiting that. Cause it’s a powerful question, right? And I admire folks that are brave enough to ask it.

CJ Wallace (00:05:29):

Right? Right. So, and just to, uh, go back on that, Scott. So yeah, my eight years, I, I’ve recently, uh, started working with Coca-Cola, but a lot of my eight years has been, um, i with two other companies as well, um, which kind of gave me the chance to really enjoy a lot experience. And going back to what you were saying about asking the why, because different companies do things different. So getting all the insight that I can all around the board of supply chain is really what, um, helped me a lot. And I would also say kind, you know, um, helped me, me to get the role at Coca-Cola. Cause with such that experience with other smaller companies, it can really play a bigger role with larger organizations.

Scott Luton (00:06:04):

What a great point. Uh, Shay, we, uh, before we even got to summer, CJ has dropped a ton of truckload of, uh, knowledge on us here. What, what’d you hear there that, uh, maybe listeners should really tune in on?

Shay Scott (00:06:16):

Yeah, I mean, I even just keying in on this last point that, that, that CJ made, which I think is a great one. There is no such thing as a single right supply chain. It’s all about the context. It’s all about the business and the external environment and, and how things change over time. And so to really be adept as a supply chain professional, you’ve gotta understand, uh, all those inputs, the outputs, the context, and be able to put, put the pieces together today to figure out where the organization needs to go. And so I, I, I love it. I love the power of why too.

Scott Luton (00:06:53):

Oh man. Kinder spirits here amongst this panel. Um, alright. So thank you CJ for level setting with us a little bit. Summer, let’s get to know you a little better as well. What, what part of the world did you grow up in?

Summer Roderick (00:07:07):

Actually, I did not up too far from cj.

Summer Roderick (00:07:12):

He grew up on the south side of Atlanta. I grew up on the of Atlanta in Kennesaw. And, um, I moved up here in 2005 to help care for my grandmother. And then I worked with a Fortune 500 company at the time, and, um, decided to move into management. And then management led me to meet my husband. So then my husband instilled in me the courage to actually go to school after, um, we started a family. So, um, we’re in the middle of having a family and, um, running our businesses. Um, and I’m going to school and graduating. Um, we just, we love Knoxville. It’s, it’s the perfect place to raise a family. It’s, it’s absolutely beautiful here. And, uh, I could not imagine being anywhere else than here in Knoxville, but, Wow. My heart is slightly in Kennesaw, uh, Georgia too though. <laugh> just slightly.

Scott Luton (00:08:12):

So, uh, I, I love so many elements of your story, um, you know, taking care of your grandmother, we can all relate to that, right? Um, you know, being, having the courage and the fortitude and getting encouraged by your husband to go back to school, um, you know, after y’all have been building a family, you know, I, I’ve got folks in my family that did the same and I really admire that. Uh, you know, you never stop learning, right? Uh, never stop learning. Um, so whether it is Kennesaw or Knoxville, uh, let’s talk food or anything else that was inseparable from your upbringing or your time, uh, in the city. So, uh, which not clearly, you’re a fan in Knoxville, so what’s one of your favorite family traditions there in Knoxville, Tennessee?

Summer Roderick (00:08:54):

Oh, it’s actually coming up my absolute favorite family tradition. And this does happen in Atlanta. It is the, uh, fantasy of trees. And the reason why I love it is because all of the money raised goes to the local children’s hospital, and it happens the week of Thanksgiving. So me and my children actually go and volunteer to, um, help create with the crafts and engage with the children. And then we actually go participate in the fantasy entries. And it’s just Christmas. It’s, it’s the perfect way to ring in Christmas,

Scott Luton (00:09:30):

Man. I love that. Thank you so much for sharing, and I appreciate y’all’s service as a family. Um, alright. So one more question and then Shannon, I’m gonna get your take on, on what summer is sharing here. But one more question. So in, and some of the information we gathered from you pre show, uh, this one phrase stuck, stuck out to me. Uh, you said summer that supply chain is a new puzzle that I get to solve every day. So Summer, speak to that a little bit.

Summer Roderick (00:09:57):

I love puzzles. Puzzles speak to me. I love to organize, um, see things from a different point of view, work from different angles to try to figure out how to solve a problem. Um, I did that in the military, I’m doing it here and supply chain. I was doing supply chain and logistics planning before I ever entered into supply chain. It’s literally just ingrained in me. Car trips, road trips with kids or family planning, those primary and secondary routes. Um, picking a hotel, where is it laid logistically? I actually have to see the layout of the hotel room before we book it. I am very picky, uh, because of the flow. I wanna know how is our family gonna flow through this for the period of time we’re there. So, um, that translates all over into the agility of supply chain, the flow of supply chain, how things change hands from one, um, part of your supply chain to the other, uh, working with vendors communicating. Um, I just absolutely love all of it. And it was a part of me before it became a major for me. And so when I learned what supply chain was, it was, it was not even a question. It was like, of course I’m gonna major in supply chain because I already do this every day.

Scott Luton (00:11:19):

I love that. I love how un universal your view is of what supply chain is. Right? Um, alright, Shay, uh, you’ve got two incredibly passionate, uh, professionals here. Uh, but back to summer’s, uh, thoughts there? What stood out to you?

Shay Scott (00:11:36):

Yeah, I mean, I, I think, uh, supply chain is in the blood. Uh, we, we teach our students to view, uh, to view the world through the lens of supply chain management. And, and, you know, sometimes we get criticism from our colleagues in the business school. And without that, we’re on some type of world domination quest. And, uh, of course we defer and avoid actually answering that question <laugh>. But, uh, but, but I, I, I, I think you see that how the, the, the power of supply chain, not only to impact the financial performance of a focal firm and the ecosystem in which they operate, but the opportunity for supply chains to improve and impact society. Um, and, uh, and, and, and our overall world. And, and on some level that seems grandiose, but on another level, uh, as we all work together to do that, we can, we can look back and see the, uh, see the impact we have. I think another thing that comes to mind is, uh, no matter what happens, um, as, uh, the University of Tennessee plays Georgia, I’d like to point out that the University of Tennessee gets the best and brightest students from the state of Georgia. Oh boy. And, uh, we work with them to, uh, to educate them and help them go out and make that impact in the world.

Scott Luton (00:12:54):

Uh, <laugh>, I love that. And we’re gonna hear about that, I’m sure. But, uh, hey, it’s amazing, um, uh, the legacy, I mean, you know, there’s a variety of rankings out there, but, but what, uh, what really speaks to me to, and really kind of what you were sharing there is y’all have turned out, uh, for decades now, uh, business leaders that really move mountains. And, uh, that’s, you know, at the end of the day, it’s about business outcomes, regardless of all the rankings and accolades, all that stuff. And clearly with CJ and Summer, you are gonna be continuing, uh, in that mission, Shay. So I appreciate sharing and hey, Bulldog fans, listeners, all in good fun. All in good fun. Y’all know how it goes. Good fun, <laugh>. Um, hey, Shay, let’s get to know you a little better. We, we learned, you know, CJ from Riverdale and some from Kenne, all but loves Knoxville. Shay, where’d you grew up?

Shay Scott (00:13:47):

Sure. I, I grew up in a small town in western Tennessee called Trenton, Tennessee. It’s about an hour northeast of Memphis in the middle of cotton country, about, um, eh, it was about 4,000 people when I grew up there, probably about, you know, 3500, 3200 now. Um, and, and, and so, uh, you know, my, my world, uh, growing up was, uh, was, was really contained, uh, largely within that, within that small town America. I, um, I, I joke sometimes we’ve got a, a fantastic world renowned faculty here at Tennessee, about about 30 faculty in supply chain. I think there are two of us, maybe three of us now that are actually native Tennesseeans <laugh>. And, and so I’m like, well, someone has to represent, uh, the, the state that we, uh, that we, that we serve as a flagship university. So I, I love my small town upbringing, and I, I, I didn’t know exactly what I wanted to do when I, when I graduated from high school.

Shay Scott (00:14:51):

Uh, you know, I, I didn’t, again, my world was wa worldview was pretty narrow at that point. So I decided I wanted to go to engineering school, and there were only two of those in the state of Tennessee. Uh, I ended up at the University of Tennessee and, uh, earned an undergrad in Civil and Environmental Engineering. Um, I, I love building things, seeing the tangible results of that, uh, that, that put me into a, a, a career in project management and commercial construction. I quickly figured out that the business processes, uh, what I would call now the supply chain right, of construction management was far more interesting to me than the, uh, then the design aspect of, you know, how do you, how do you design a building that led me, um, back to the University of Tennessee, and I earned an MBA and a master of science and industrial and systems engineering. Um, and, and at that point, uh, we were very much in the, in the.com boom. And, uh, I got recruited into, uh, into Dell, uh, out of Tennessee’s MBA program and began working in logistics and then supply chain sort of, uh, a little bit by, by happenstance.

Scott Luton (00:16:04):

Okay, Shay, that is quite a background. And, um, I love how you can, you can tie the common thread to supply chain back when, uh, in a time where that wasn’t used as much. And hey, that was before the hyphen was at. I don’t know where that came from, but, um, so Shay, uh, quick question. Growing up in western Tennessee, as you laid out, Trenton, Tennessee, I think you called it small town. Um, when I think of Tennessee, one of the things I think about beyond adult beverages and talent, talented people, you name it, is barbecue. So what was something, what, from a food standpoint, what was really special about your upbringing?

Shay Scott (00:16:41):

Yeah, I mean, certainly I was raised to be a barbecue snob. I mean, moving here to, to moving here to the other end of Tennessee, they’re people that, that, that think they are, but they weren’t really, uh, they weren’t really raised in, uh, in that way. I, I mean, uh, you know, there seems to be some relationship between the quality of the building and the quality of the food. It’s an inverse relationship inverse, right? And, and, and so you really have to be a local to understand that yes, that is the place that you want to go to get the absolute best barbecue that you’ve ever had in your life. And, and so, uh, that’s, uh, that’s certainly part of the, uh, part of the, part of the part of the experience.

Scott Luton (00:17:23):

Oh, I love it. Okay, So we’re gonna have a coffee show, or we’re gonna have a barbecue show, uh, down the road a little bit. So y’all stay tuned. Um, alright. So kiting aside, let’s come back to your current role, uh, at University of Tennessee. Uh, tell us what you do now.

Shay Scott (00:17:38):

Sure. So I, uh, I, I serve as a professor of practice in the Department of Supply Chain Management. So on the faculty, I, I teach, uh, as, as, as one would think, uh, a, a university faculty member does. But I actually spend most of my time in this executive director role of our global Supply chain institute. And, and our institute is an organization that was created, uh, to, to advance supply chain talent development and, and innovation. And the way we do that is we’ve created this hub for students, for, uh, faculty and for practitioners to come together. And that’s where the magic happens. You know, it’s not that faculty are sequestered away, coming up with a better way to do supply chain in their office, uh, that, that, that the laboratory is out in the field for us. And so for us, from a faculty standpoint, the more interaction we can have with a wider diversity of companies, the better we understand what’s working, what’s not, what should we, what should we focus on, what shouldn’t we, And then we put that together with fantastic students like Summer and cj.

Shay Scott (00:18:51):

And, and again, you, you really get that magic. The companies are drawn because they want the talent, right? Uh, they want to develop themselves, they want to hear what we are hearing. Um, and, and then the students are drawn because they get a relevant, applicable education. And, and, uh, and, and a handful of job offers, uh, and opportunities. And then from us as faculty, we love it because we’re in the center of, of what’s going on. So it’s really a privilege for us to, for us to be able to, to steward that, that that hub.

Scott Luton (00:19:26):

Oh man, Well put, uh, well put so much goodness there, uh, in doing things, uh, the right way, the constructive way that, uh, lead to big impact, uh, and certainly changing industry. Um, alright. So cj, I wanna circle back to you as we continue moving forward here. Um, now that we’ve kind of level set it with some of your perspectives, where you’re from, what impact to kind of your worldview, let’s talk about the global supply chain right now and what’s going on across the industry. Um, what’s one topic or trend or issue you name it that you’re tracking perhaps more than others right now at cj?

CJ Wallace (00:20:00):

Oh, for me, it’ll be digitization. Cause so many companies are having, uh, trouble, I would say, trying to adapt to these new prep, uh, processes and practices. You know, technology is constantly changing every day, and it’s hard, and I get it for companies to keep up, but just no noticing how, uh, legacy companies, you know, companies that been around for over a hundred years, uh, speaking, for instance, on coat’s behalf, you know, 130 year old company, just seeing how it can, um, uh, implement these AI and different kind of, uh, processes into our normal workflow and seeing the challenges, uh, that they’re facing. Um, it’s funny because, uh, talking to a director of IT transformation for the company recently, um, one thing that they brought up, um, that the company will be looking forward to, uh, try to implement with something called dynamic pricing. And with dynamic pricing, what they’re planning on doing is, um, uh, how I seen it is kind of, you’ll be able to actually, um, by having electronic, uh, pricing boards actually change the price due to the points of demand.

CJ Wallace (00:21:06):

So in fluctuations where demand might be high, you might be able to, you know, if you know that people are really looking for this, you could charge more, but, and that’ll also work for them on the benefit when demand might be low. You know, I, we can drop the price now to try to entice customers to buy more of this product. So just these different kind of implementations that are going around in supply chain now and seeing how companies are trying to adapt, that is the biggest thing that I enjoy following right now in supply chain.

Scott Luton (00:21:31):

Fascinating. Uh, I’ll tell you, pricing strategies and decision making has certainly been, uh, a lot more challenging, it seems like in the last, uh, six months or so. But I love the idea dynamic pricing and leveraging takes technologies, um, kind of a different point, leveraging them in a very pre, uh, precise way, right? Uh, you know, we hear so much about AI and machine learning mm-hmm. And, and all these, um, you know, uh, forward-looking, uh, current modern technologies. But, you know, I love hearing real practical, precise examples where it is being applied with real impact, right? And, and it’s, it’s not so cliche, right? So I really appreciate you sharing that, cj. Um, okay. So, Summer, how about you? Let’s, when you think of global, the world of global supply chain, what’s one thing that comes to mind that you’re tracking more than others? Right now?

Summer Roderick (00:22:21):

One of the things that I really like tracking is actually the global supply chain as far as the shipping containers and the storage, um, within the distribution centers. And I think Covid really, uh, has a, still has a massive bull whip effect when you’re looking at how much did we order? And, um, I heard story after story after story saying, Well, I ordered 10 and I only got seven, so I’m gonna order 15 so that I get my 10. And I, I said, You know, that’s great. That’s a, that’s a good thought to have, but at some point, all that back order’s gonna come and you’re gonna have a surplus on your front end. And so I actually, um, thank thankfully to do the University of Tennessee, got to go to where the South Carolina Port Authority recently. And when you talk about all of those ships that about nine months ago, were sitting off the coast waiting to unload, you know, that’s been shown that it’s down to almost zero.

Summer Roderick (00:23:25):

That didn’t disappear. We did not absorb that into our economy yet. That is in warehouses, um, at the distribution centers. So I’m studying the analytics behind how can we, how can we take what we have in our surplus? How can we distribute that among the economy so that we have sustainable, uh, resourcing so that we’re not discarding so much and being responsible, but at the same time creating, um, and meeting consumer needs. So that’s, that’s kind of a really big problem to have to solve. Uh, but you only eat an elephant, one small bite at a time. So I’m, I’m looking at the analytics of how, how does the warehouse, uh, analyze this? How can we separate this? Then we go back to, um, our marketing team and say, Hey, you know what, we have this, how can we use this? How can we make use of this and still make a small profit off of it? So I think, um, on a global scale, I’m, I’m still watching that full up effect, Anna. It’s gonna be very interesting in the next 18 months to see how, how that is all absorbed into the economy.

Scott Luton (00:24:31):

That’s right. Uh, man, so much stuff to dive into there. You know, by some estimates, retail inventories are at the highest levels in like 30 years. Um, and so we’ve all seen all the discounting going on, Kinda going back to CJ’s talking about pricing, whether it’s patio furniture, whether I was walking through one of the big retailers and it was like a, a grill parade. They had so many grills and they were getting like the deals of the century. Um, but you know, as you know, as everyone knows here, uh, all the, the massive cost of, of these, um, massive warehouses filled to the brim of inventory, right? It’s like cost, baghat’s cost, baguettes cost. Um, so thank you for sharing. You know, it’s all, I’ll tell you, it’s all interrelated. Even your answers, there’s some common themes there. Um, Shay, uh, beyond what CJ and Summer have shared in terms of some of the things that they’re tracking in global industry, what’s something that’s top of mind for you?

Shay Scott (00:25:23):

Yeah, I mean, I, I, I would certainly, uh, uh, agree with the themes we’ve set up. I think, uh, two, two additional things that, that I would put on the table. One, the, the rising importance of planning within our end to end supply chains. Uh, you know, planning has historically been something that’s happened at the functional level. It’s happened, um, you know, through, uh, ad hoc processes. It’s never really been focused on. And now as we’ve entered what we believe is gonna be a decades long phase of, of uncertainty and scarcity, uh, planning is really where it’s at. Planning is how you raise agility in your supply chain, um, in, in a, in a cost effective way, because we can’t afford to build, uh, you know, redundancy and capacity. So that, that, that’s one. I, I think a second one real quickly would be this idea of, uh, of fringe shoring or sovereign supply chains. Uh, particularly as we look in critical industries like, uh, uh, tech and chip manufacturing and automotive. I, I, I think that that’s yet another layer as we, as we’ve moved past this idea of low cost, and we start talking about, you know, whether it’s plus one or more regionalization. Now we’ve added on this additional layer of, of sovereign supply chains where we’ve got really a, a front and center political frame that needs to be laid on top of our designs. And so, once again, we, uh, we get more constraints on the puzzles we’re working.

Scott Luton (00:27:00):

Oh, it ain’t it fun, right? Ain’t fun. It is. It is. Uh, but, but I really appreciate both of those points. Um, I mean, heck, some of the trends going on in your second point about the stubborn supply chain, French, ensuring all those movements, it’s really, it’s fascinating. Um, and it’s gonna definitely shape what you deemed kinda like that, the decade of uncertainty that we will continue to, to be navigating through. Um, going back to your first point, though, CJ Summer, and Shay, you know, to our listeners, folks, if you rub elbow, boat is with planners, if you’re a business leader that’s got a team of planners or a planner, you name it, go down, break bread with them, first off, give ’em a hug, right? Because they, they do the critical work. And, and it, to your point, it’s no longer transaction, for lack of a better phrase.

Scott Luton (00:27:47):

It truly can shape the strategic, uh, opportunities, uh, strategic opportunities in the business. So hug them, those planners, see what they’re seeing, solve their challenges, and, uh, starting and stopping there, you’ll be a better office as an organization. Um, okay, I wanna move into Eureka moment. This is one of my favorite questions to ask, right? I think, uh, I, I’m a big believer in the power of reflection, you know, and especially in this digital era that we’re all in, you know, I don’t know about y’all. I bet y’all got like a couple monitors like I did. You got email, you got social, you got Slack, you got whatever. And so you’re constantly getting bombarded with stuff. One of my favorite things to do is shut all that stuff down for, you know, an hour at a time, maybe a couple hours, and just stop and think and reflect on, you know, uh, like when I’m driving. That’s one of my favorite times. That windshield time is when my brain can like, work through some of the challenges that in, in my journey, right? So this eureka moment is very related to that. So, cg, I’m gonna come, uh, all the way back to you here. What’s been a eureka moment, uh, that you’ve experienced here in, in recent years, recent months, you name it?

CJ Wallace (00:28:56):

Um, definitely I would have to say the effects that, uh, Covid had on the supply chain itself. Um, you know, a lot of supply chains before that time, I would say their, uh, analyzation of, of their risk efforts were kind of low. So, you know, a lot of ’em thought maybe they were invincible. So when things are, when that pandemic actually happened, how long it took them to actually just get back on their feet and get, uh, get back to, you know, uh, some kind of form of normalcy, the amount of time that it took, you know, many companies of like, uh, Summer had said earlier, other companies are still struggling from those effects of that. So, um, just seeing that and, um, kind of, I’m glad to be, to say that I actually lived through this time because, you know, that helps. If it ever was, you know, knock on wood, God forbid that we ever have to go through anything like that again. But if it ever was happen again, just thinking forward and knowing how we can better mitigate the risk in that case is something that I find as eureka moment. And still, even to this day, I’m constantly thinking of what could we have done different? You know, I mean, it was something that was unforeseeable, but still, what could we have done different? So that, that would probably be my biggest moment of reflection.

Scott Luton (00:30:09):

I love that. Uh, it’s so important, uh, for these, these painful lessons learned, right? Tra tragic in some cases, lessons learned for us to take that and, and apply it to industry so that we are, we are better off in the next, cuz you know, it’s coming, uh, uh, the next, uh, curve ball, the next situation we’ve gotta deal with for sure. And to your point, I’ll knock on wood too, cuz hopefully it’ll be a long time before we see a pandemic, uh, along the, the scope of, of, uh, Covid 19. Um, okay. So some, or I’ll circle back to you now really quick before I ask you your eureka moment. You mentioned that you’re a veteran. Uh, I was in the Air Force. What, what branch were you in?

Summer Roderick (00:30:48):

I was in the Navy. In the Navy. I, I got the opportunity to, um, service the Marines. So, uh, had my foot in both sides.

Scott Luton (00:30:57):

You said a submarine?

Summer Roderick (00:31:00):

Uh, no, the Marine Corps. Oh, Marine. Cool. Actually, uh, um, a medic for a marine battalion unit.

Scott Luton (00:31:06):

Well, thank you for what you do. Thank you for your service. And I, I wanted to definitely point out that we have a tremendous opportunity to help more veterans transition into global supply chain. I mean, there, there’s so much talent and experience, uh, there, so I appreciate what you do and great to have you that great that you’re, uh, doing what you’re doing. Um, alright, so, Eureka moment. You know, CJ mentioned a really powerful one, uh, and, and a lot of what the pandemic has taught us and how we’ve gotta, we’ve gotta really not just hurt and complain and, and react, but man, really apply those lessons learned. What would be your, your Eureka moment? Summer

Summer Roderick (00:31:44):

Mine is more of working inside the industry. And I believe before Covid was, um, an opportunity that we should take. We should never look at it and be like, this was horrible. This every learning experience get or bad, we should GLE from this. You know, I am a big believer in that positive or negative, there’s gleaning and wisdom to be taken. And I believe before covid, uh, procurement and supply chain logistics planning was kind of like, Oh, they’re kind of over there during their own thing and they’re weird. And, uh, I think now you’re looking at people going, Oh wait, we actually need their insight. We could use their wisdom. They understand what’s really going on, the nuts and bolts, putting a clock together, um, and how to make this operation work in a, in a very smooth manner. Uh, one of my biggest moments, um, that affected me personally was seeing the war and Ukraine break out, but then also the, the effect of what happened with that, when you start talking about, um, grain and you start talking about, um, farms and you start talking about having to get fuel to help these people get what they need to get done, done, Um, farmers were not able to put crops in the ground.

Summer Roderick (00:33:07):

Well, what does that look like? And I just keep digging and I just keep digging. And so, uh, that was just a real life opportunity to sit back and go as a supply chain person, how can this small area of the world that has the conflict, how can other countries come in and help and support and do what they couldn’t do? How can we come in and support them? And I think that’s what supply chain is all about. I think supply chain is, I think I firmly believe every department in the organization should have a supply chain person in it sitting at the table and saying, Hey, by the way, I want you guys to be aware of how, how these decisions are gonna affect this. And, and they are the ma i we are the mechanics of the world, right? We are firmly the mechanics of the world. And I firmly believe that once you start looking at it from that point of view, you’re looking at people that are not just change makers, but change way makers.

Scott Luton (00:34:10):

Hey, I, I like that. Uh, summer, I like how you think. And you know, one of the things you mentioned there, uh, with grain right? In, in Ukraine and, and with the Russian invasion, that’s been just the latest example of how, uh, global supply chains have been weaponized over the years, right? It, it’s, it’s, it’s a shame. Uh, and we’ll see how that plays out. But I appreciate your, your perspective and your, your, uh, optimism because, you know, it’s so important during these challenging times to, to, as we’ve said here, not only maintain a sense of humor, but to maintain that optimism, that positive thinking so that we can fight through the stuff that’s thrown at us. Um, okay, Shay, man, CJ in summer, uh, we asked for a reflection and we got it. Um, you got it. What comes to your mind with these eureka moments? <laugh>?

Shay Scott (00:34:54):

Oh, wow. Hey, so it’s, uh, it’s a crowded place in there. Um, I, you know, one of the questions that we got a lot, um, after the pandemic was, uh, was kind of in full swing, is what are you all teaching that’s different because of the pandemic? What’s changed, um, uh, uh, uh, about, about your program again? And, you know, as, as we thought about that, I mean, un undoubtedly there are some things, I mean, more attention on risk and things, but the reality of it is we were teaching all that stuff already. And in fact, as we were interacting with company leaders, they were telling us they were doing that stuff already. Um, they weren’t at a, at a level that, that that’s needed to be successful. And, and, and, and it’s not, it’s not their fault. I, I think it’s, it is, um, it’s a result kind of, of our, of our system, right?

Shay Scott (00:35:56):

Particularly for publicly traded companies that have a, a, a, a quarterly pressure on, on hitting analyst expectations. A lot of times, most of the time that makes companies, um, make shortsighted decisions. And, and often that’s where things like risk management and planning and collaboration and, and a and a longer term strategy really get the short shrift and it, So I think that that kind of hit us pretty hard as, as we work with these corporate leaders through the, through the process. You know, how do we, how do we push forward the field in an environment that really is fundamentally not that receptive, um, to, to, to, to, to doing so? And I think it’s still open. You, you know, we learn, companies learn so many lessons during this pandemic, and we are already seeing them revert back to pre pandemic waste, a as we’re wishing a recession upon ourselves. And we w we’ve moved into, you know, cut cost, uh, start doing things that we know are gonna have negative consequences, but we have to do it because there’s some expectation externally that, that we do that. And so that’s, that’s currently one of the, kinda one of those eureka moments as well as conundrums that’s floating around in my mind.

Scott Luton (00:37:27):

You know, uh, so much truth there. And I, I, I was, uh, doing some research earlier this week, um, uh, about kind of 2023 in that short horizon. And it’s amazing how many folks are talking about the return to normal normalcy. And I, I just, um, I don’t buy into that. I don’t subscribe to that. So, uh, but we’ll see. Thank you for sharing. Uh, Shay, uh, a lot of things that, uh, um, a lot of different ways, My crystal ball is still broken. I don’t know about y’all, so we’ll dive into, uh, that later on. But let’s talk about, I wanna shift gears. We’ve, we’ve really, uh, learned from each of your perspectives, your journeys, kind of who you are, where you’re from. We’ve moved into, um, a little bit of what, what you do and, and what you’re seeing out there in global industry, what you’re tracking.

Scott Luton (00:38:14):

Uh, we’ve talked about that, that the power reflection and some of your thoughts there, eureka moments there. I wanna shift gears now to kind of, while we’re all here, right? What brought us all together, and that is the University of Tennessee’s supply chain management program, highly touted. Uh, as we talked on the front end, you know, uh, there’s so many different accolades and rankings, but, uh, the undergraduate and the graduate program are number two and number one as ranked by Gartner, if I’ve got that right, Shaa, right? Correct. And, uh, ding it out for that, uh, that title belt. So that’s, that, that alone is a ton of, uh, a ton of credibility. But again, for me, I look at the what are we doing, what are the outcomes? And that’s where UT has been, um, just a, a stall working in the industry. So what makes cg, I’m coming back to you as we start here. What makes the University of Tennessee Supply Chain Management program so special?

CJ Wallace (00:39:06):

So far for me, it’s been just my interactions, um, with my fellow colleagues, the students as well as professors. Um, they have a plethora of knowledge that they’re just willing to share. And, um, just being able to gain all of that information. And, um, what I tell anybody, um, that’s trying to decide to go in to, you know, their graduate and take it, it’s whatever you make it. So if you wanna make the best of it, if you’re looking to go in and obtain all the knowledge and find ways that you are able to utilize this knowledge into your own practices at your own organization, this is definitely for you because you’ll get all the tools that you need in order to succeed to do that. So the biggest thing for me is just my interactions that I’ve been getting with people. Um, this past week we had the, um, we had our immersion as well as they had the global supply chain form, which I know was a, a, a few of my colleagues that were there as well. So just having that chance, the networking and everything, um, as you said earlier, it’s really, it would really set you up in a position to have exposure if you wanna drive your future.

Scott Luton (00:40:11):

So CJs, one of the things are heard there is it’s all there, right? It, it’s all the world class program’s all there, but you, the student have to lean into that and take advantage of that, for sure. To make, make the most of it. I appreciate that. Cj, cj, I wish you were, uh, with me back in college because I ignored all of that, uh, <laugh>. So,

CJ Wallace (00:40:32):

Well, you know what, I, I will tell you, uh, one thing about me, I, cause like I said, I graduated, um, high schools to be coming up on 20 years. So having, like I said, I I, I’m really grateful for that time that I had to actually work in those smaller roles in the warehouse, driving forklifts and things like that, because it actually plays a big part into the reason why I make some of the decisions that I make now. Definitely. So I really do enjoy having the time to be able to grasp those smaller level roles, because a lot of times, you know, um, the C-suite, uh, level management, we say they get it, but do they really get it? Because, you know, information, it, it’s rare that information bleeds all the way from the top to the bottom. So knowing that I always keep the bottom in mind really helps me.

Scott Luton (00:41:19):

You know, maybe, maybe, um, organizations out there will set up policies where all c level, all board members gotta go drive a forklift or a cherry picker, or I,

CJ Wallace (00:41:29):

I’m

Scott Luton (00:41:30):

Pick orders or something. It would

CJ Wallace (00:41:31):

Be great.

Scott Luton (00:41:32):

It really would. Was

Shay Scott (00:41:34):

Supposed we should have a, we, we should have them picking orders manually, not driving the forklifts, right? I mean, our, our safety culture would not want that.

CJ Wallace (00:41:44):

I tell you one thing, it might change morale cuz you know, when people on that level see that, you know, they’re willing to do that as well and go in and, and live the life that we live every day, your gain will respect, trust me.

Scott Luton (00:41:56):

Yeah. <laugh>. Yeah. That, no, a lot of truth there and I appreciate that perspective. Cj, um, summer, same question going back to the, uh, University of Tennessee’s supply chain management program. Um, what makes it special from where you sit?

Summer Roderick (00:42:11):

I will have to say, you know, it’s the hometown university. You live in Knoxville, you go to the University of Tennessee. Um, there’s, I will say there are so many great institutions just within a drive from right here. Uh, but when you start talking about applicable, when you start talking about industry changing, you’ve got to go to the University of Tennessee. You’ve got to come to Haslam School of Business. Um, and so I came just based on reputation alone. What I’ve got and what I have dearly enjoyed is just the faculty is second to none. You’re talking people that have been in industry, they, they so love the industry. They’re willing to retire from it and come back and just teach. And that’s gotta be a true love. Like you have to really love what you’ve done to come back and teach. And you know, Shay alluded to the Global Supply Chain Institute.

Summer Roderick (00:43:12):

We just had our forum last week. You do not get the kind of interaction that you can get at that form anywhere else. I personally was there. You talk to, uh, VPs, you talk to CEOs of these companies and they’re huge companies. This, um, I could list all, almost all 73 partners or more and say, I did not meet just, you know, the five bottom pickers. I met people that you want to rub elbows with in industry. And then you go back to the classroom and they say, We’re gonna do this simulation. And you’re thinking, Oh, this is great. This is just a simulation. No, this is something that they’ve done inside their former jobs and say, okay, this is why it is applicable. And they just love what they do. They love teaching outside just bar in love to teach and love for students to come talk to them.

Summer Roderick (00:44:07):

And then you’re talking about internships that are just left and right. They encourage you to an interview for them. They have networking events twice a year, one per semester. You’re talking about employer of the day. They actually bring employers to, has them for two, three hours at a time. You cannot go to any university and just say, Okay, well they’ve got this and then this one’s got this, UT has it all right here. And I’ve told students, I’m like, If you don’t take advantage of at least one or two of these, you are short cutting yourself. There’s I believe five honors programs for supply chain undergrads alone. I’m sorry, but if you can’t try to get into one of those <laugh>, sorry, but you, I I question your ability in supply chain. Um, but I will tell you like they, we went to the South Carolina Port Authority.

Summer Roderick (00:45:02):

They’re planning on going to another trip just this month alone, last minute pickup. We, um, took a crew of students to volunteer at a conference back in September. They’re planning a a, a spring trip. You’re not talking about a university that doesn’t care. And they, and they’re here to take your money and, and all the things you hear about big universities, UT cares. Mm, has cares. Anna. If you want to get a degree, that’s going to matter. And if you want to be engaged with your faculty and really learn industry changing knowledge, this is the place. I’m sorry, but you can’t, I don’t know why Gartner number put us number two. I’m kinda offended by that.

Shay Scott (00:45:43):

<laugh> Summer’s a summer’s, summer’s not a paid spokesperson. Scott. I mean, I’ll, I’ll, I’ll I’ll need to point that out. There is no, uh, there is no money changing hands or

Scott Luton (00:45:54):

Anything. <laugh>, you know, I just registered as, uh, Summer was touting all those reasons. So, uh, but hey, getting aside, I really appreciate that. As passionate as, um, you describe, both of y’all have been describing to faculty and, and the opportunities that are there, uh, I appreciate how passionate you are about sharing that message with, uh, some of our listeners that may be figure, trying to figure out where they go next, whether it’s for undergrad or, or, or other degrees. So thank you. And in particular, I love how you illustrated something that, that Sha said earlier, you know, the laboratories out in the field and the value of of, of helping to get students out in there, You know, truly interacting with practitioners, seeing things for themselves, uh, and experiencing that. I mean, that, that, that’s, that is invaluable. Um, alright, so Jay, uh, what would you add to what CJ and Summer have shared about the supply chain management program and that, and the haz, uh, school of business at ut?

Shay Scott (00:46:56):

It’s the people, it’s the connections. Uh, you know, certainly there’s the, the, there’s the technical acumen, but the, the, the opportunity to plug in to a culture that, that as CJ and and Summer have indicated is truly about advancing the field. Um, you can feel the difference as you get involved. Uh, I, I, I can feel the difference as a faculty member. You know, I get to interact with a team of colleagues that make me better every day. Um, that are, I mean, I love, I had our senior staff meeting yesterday and we had several people who were talking about conversations with companies they had just had kind of in the previous day or two. Um, that was just some really, really cool stuff. A couple things I can’t unfortunately give you the examples of, but, but, but I think that that, that that type of environment, uh, really does make it special.

Shay Scott (00:47:54):

And the, the words that I chose earlier, uh, are, are really important. It, it, it’s, it’s our role to kind of steward that, that relationship of being a hub. Uh, we as faculty don’t have all the knowledge. In fact, as you stated earlier, Scott, a lot of times we’re learning as much as the, the students are, but we can create the environment to where students, faculty, and practitioners learn. And, and so I would say, you know, whether you’re, whether you’re a student that’s interested in, in a degree program or whether you’re a company that I hope is got your, got your focus on, you know, how do we use supply chain to create competitive advantage in our organization. There’s a place to, to to, to get involved. And I think it’s, it’s a special culture because we do the, the kind of the both. And I mean our, our research faculty are the number one most productive research faculty globally in supply chain. So we write a tremendous amount of academic journal articles that are, that are aimed at a narrow audience. But the reason we’re the most productive are the relationships with companies and students that we have that feed the context and the perspective and the data and all the things around that. And so it’s that, it’s that extra step that we take that I think makes it a, makes it a special place.

Scott Luton (00:49:20):

Love that. Um, alright, so, um, I wanna I wanna have like a forward looking portion of the conversation here. We’ve done that a little bit, but, uh, from an individual standpoint, and then we’re gonna circle back and we’re gonna get some maha’s favorite moments kind of from the classroom as he was just speaking about. Um, so cj uh, what do you want to do ultimately in industry, you know, in the years ahead and why?

CJ Wallace (00:49:48):

So, that’s a great question, Scott. Um, I wanna do a number of things. Um, evolve a supply chain. Um, I try to keep my mindset open in the field. I don’t wanna get just too stern up. Um, right now my background is in inventory and planning, but I don’t wanna say that I wanna just involve the rest of my career in inventory planning because there’s so many aspects of supply chain. Um, honestly, next I’m thinking about stepping into the procurement space. Um, it’s different things as well as, you know, maybe forecasting and going on. So I’m just keeping a positive outlook on supply chain, keeping my mind open to it. Um, just all the different areas. Cause ultimately I would like to, um, possess a sweet a c-suite level position one day with an organization. And I know that, um, having that wide range background of all supply chain, not just in one functional area, but the total complete puzzle will really, um, help me be able to make organizational decisions that will help a company, you know, uh, be a world class leader in supply chain.

Scott Luton (00:50:51):

Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, I love that cj and there, there’s so much for what I, I would say so much for everybody, uh, across global supply chain, across all the different functional areas, especially if you like, uh, like we hear, uh, believe in a very holistic definition of the term supply chain. So very well said, uh, cj and I’ve got no doubts. You’ll be one of the C level leaders that will be bringing your colleagues back down to experience warehou for sure. Manufacturing, plant floors, you name it. So I love that

CJ Wallace (00:51:20):

All time. Thank you Scott.

Scott Luton (00:51:21):

<laugh>. All right, so Summer, what about you? What do you wanna do in industry and why?

Summer Roderick (00:51:27):

Um, CD’s gonna be a little jealous. I am in procurement. I absolutely love it. Um, it’s probably, I got to sit under an amazing professor for my procurement class and I did not think I would enjoy it. Um, however, I have been abundantly blessed to be able to say at that turn from a to a, Yeah. Uh, so I do wanna move up into the C suite eventually, um, and take on a CPO position. Um, cuz I wanna watch responsible procurement. When you start, you can, you can put so much into procurement, sustainable, um, initiatives, and then you start talking about making sure that the company has got the right vendors in the right place at the right time. That’s something that we are preached, preached, preached, and taught so much here, right place, right person, right time. Um, and so I think you, with procurement, you, you can have, um, this massive effect inside this tiny little bubble.

Summer Roderick (00:52:31):

And so, uh, I’ve gotten to do government procurement previously and I get to do it forward looking. So I think, um, looking forward when you start talking about taking my background as a veteran and then moving forward, I wanna work for companies that, um, create responsible procurement that help, um, create a better life for us here in the United States. So that, that way when you, everyone goes to bed at night and tucks their kids in and says, you know, they have that safe space knowing that the government is doing the right thing in the right place at the right time. And I think that, um, that’s, I just absolutely love it. I it’s just, it’s, it’s just who I am. Um, I I will say I’m a little jealous of CJ getting to work there, the the CocaCola company down there. Um, but he

CJ Wallace (00:53:23):

Is, it’s a lot of room for procurement

Shay Scott (00:53:25):

Professionals.

Scott Luton (00:53:26):

That’s true. Trust me. And arguably procurement has never been as cool. And, and I tell you folks are really looking at procurement these days far beyond that stereotypical of, you know, call savings and, and that kind of stuff, but more, much more strategically. And that’s a great development for, for global business. So, uh, Summer and cj, we’re gonna be keeping our finger on the pulse as y’all progress moving forward. Um, Shay speak to what you heard there, if you would, before we get into, you know, kind of what you do and why you love doing it and stuff, what, what, what did you love about CJ and Summer’s answers?

Shay Scott (00:54:03):

Uh, start starting. Well, really both of them, but I, I get such, such a energy from the passion that our students have about not only making their organizations better, but making our world better. And, and when you look even at just what you were mentioning Scott and Summer discussed about the, the ESG focus that is finally appearing within procurement. Uh, not to mention the end to end supply chain perspective, that’s finally procure, uh, appearing within procurement, where it’s not only about cost savings and about P P P P improvement. Um, and, and I, I’m, I’m, I’m hopeful that we are gonna see some, some, some dramatic movement here over the coming decade in the field where we are making better, more responsible, um, holistic decisions. And, and so I I love that. I mean, I’m, I’m motivated. I see students make decisions on job offers cause of those factors. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, they’ll walk away from a higher salary, they’ll walk away from a city that maybe they’d like to live in because they want to go make a difference and, and impact. And that’s, that’s, um, that’s encouraging for us just to, from a societal standpoint,

Scott Luton (00:55:28):

I love that. Uh, completely agree. I’m thinking like, one of the themes for 2023 and beyond is great expectations, right? Like the, the old title from the book, you got visibility, we invested in it. What are you doing with it now? Right? It’s like the, uh, I’ve her to put, uh, the dog that chases a car and once he or she catches it, what are you doing with it? What do you do <laugh>? So, um, lot of good stuff there, Shay, and clearly your passion, which CJ and Summer have been talking about in terms of the faculty and, and, and, uh, the staff at, at, uh, UT is, is very evident in our conversation here. So, to that end, Shay, why do you love doing what you do and some of your favorite, you know, moments are, you know, moments from the classroom, quote unquote?

Shay Scott (00:56:14):

Yeah, I mean, you know, as I mentioned earlier in our conversation, uh, you know, I, I, I was in industry, I was working for Dell at, at a fantastic time in Dell’s growth when we were really setting the, um, you know, setting the, the frontier for what, what we were doing in, in, in supply chain. Uh, the thing that, that called me out of that role into a role like this one was I thought my view was pretty myopic because I spent, you know, lots of time on a given day looking at Dell, obviously. And, um, you know, I love the role now because we have, uh, about 80 formal corporate partners that we work with on a regular basis. We have about 350 companies that we interact with, but a smaller group of 80 that, that we have, uh, kind of substantive relationships with.

Shay Scott (00:57:08):

And I spend a big portion of my days working with them, listening to them, and learning. And so I, I, I just, I, I, I feel so blessed to be in a position to where, um, you know, first I can, I can understand what’s going on and, and where the opportunity is, but then also I can make connections and say, Well, you may wanna talk to so and so because they struggle with this and it seems like they’re making some progress there. Or, um, you know, I, I can’t tell you how many countless times I’ve heard, Well, my industry is different. Well, we are unique. I’m like, Well, okay, I, I hear that and it’s true to some degree, but why don’t you have a conversation with them and see if you can pull that across. Cuz it looks like it might, it, it, it might happen.

Shay Scott (00:57:54):

And that’s just, that’s, that’s fun. I love it. I, I’m leaving, uh, day after tomorrow to, to go spend, uh, 10 days with our executive MBA for global supply chain students, uh, will be in Munich and in Barcelona, uh, spending the entire seven days meeting with companies. So we’re meeting with, uh, you know, established automakers. We’re meeting with a, a startup firm that’s got solar powered cars. We’re meeting with, uh, you know, large management consultant and their supply chain innovation center. And so that’s just cool to be able to spend a week all day talking and seeing with our own eyes about what, what the, what the, the, the frontiers are, um, you know, in Europe, and then we bring ’em back here and vice versa.

Scott Luton (00:58:39):

Well, I love that. What a outstanding opportunity. And, and hey, we’ll have to do a show in your key takeaways when get back. So we’ll follow up on that. Uh, Shay, um, alright, so when you think about, let, maybe it’s, it’s what’s one of your recent favorite moments from the classroom? Maybe something you’ve learned from your students?

Shay Scott (00:58:59):

Yeah, I, you know, one of the big ones for me, again, I, I teach more in graduate programs and undergrad programs. So in this executive MBA for Global Supply chain is we were with them through the pandemic, and we were really seeing firsthand in the classroom talking about things like agility. I remember that’s, that’s, that’s one of the first times that we were really, I was really able to put together with specificity how important the planning process is in agility as we were, as we were hearing from organizations. And I was hearing from, um, from a couple in particular that, uh, well, we have planners that have this experience and this background, so we will, a, we were able to anticipate this and react to it in that way, and it helped us avoid that situation. And then you hear from another student in another company that’s like, Well, our planning organization really has gotten pushed to the side and they don’t communicate really well, and we got slammed by that. And so, I mean, that, that conversation that’s been, you know, two years ago now, but that conversation really was able to crystallize really early for me. Okay, we’re onto something here, and then we got our research teams kind of digging in on that and are able to produce, uh, you know, whether it’s industrywide papers or academic research around it.

Scott Luton (01:00:23):

Man, what, uh, I’m so jealous of the opportunity you have Shay, uh, I’m, I’m, I’m jealous of CJ in summer too because of, of how much they’re enjoying furthering their, uh, careers and perspective and expertise. But Shay man, it be the be, uh, kind of to see the tip of the spear, right? Because not only are those practitioners that are out there working right now, you know, beyond the undergrads perhaps, but, um, you know, they’re also consumers. And that’s been, gosh, all the learnings there in the last couple years as those, as we have made decisions differently and shop differently and all those different preferences. So thank you for sharing Shay. Uh, we’ll have to have you back and dive a little deeper to that end, CJ Summer and Shay wanna make sure our listeners, I wish we had another hour with, with all of y’all. I really have enjoyed your perspective here today. A lot of common threads, but also some very unique things each of all three of y’all brought to the conversation. So, cj, if folks wanna connect with you, uh, you know, whether they have you into Keynote or whether they want to talk, uh, good places to eat down in Riverdale, Georgia, or Douglasville, you name all points in between. How can folks connect with you?

CJ Wallace (01:01:34):

Sure. Um, you can, um, find me on LinkedIn, um, under, you’ll see at Clarence CJ Wallace Junior. Um, you just search it. Um, feel free to reach out to me. Um, I encourage, uh, individuals in supply chains, please reach out to me, Um, especially ones in the Atlanta area has. Um, I would like to, if possible, try to, you know, um, create maybe a, uh, group of supply chain individuals in the area that we get together. Um, whether it be, you know, to do talk about supply chain or just do good deeds in the area, whatever it may be, just the like-minded individuals, the supply chain. So feel free to reach out to me on LinkedIn at Clarence CJ Wallace Jr.

Scott Luton (01:02:13):

Love that, cj. And we’re gonna make that easy. We’re gonna include your LinkedIn profile one click away in the show notes. Uh, so, uh, but thank you so much for what you brought to the table here today, CJ and I admire, um, your perspective and your hunger and your willingness to a, to ask that question, why, for sure. Um, Summer, speaking of admiring folks, I, you know, I, I really appreciate your journey, uh, from serving our country, uh, into, you know, uh, at least a couple degrees now, getting encouraged by your husband to keep that learning. And now as you’ve kind of talked about the universal definition of what supply chain is to you, which I’ve loved, cause anybody you know, can relate to that you and CJ both can be doing big things in industry, um, beyond what you’re already doing now. So how can folks connect with you? Summer?

Summer Roderick (01:03:03):

Um, my LinkedIn is just simply Summer, Roderick, uh, and Roger is literally r o d e r i c k. And whether you wanna learn more about what UT has to offer you, I will be back. Ut has not seen the last of me, Um, not in the smallest sense. Shay is gonna know my name, <laugh>, definitely more than he does now.

Scott Luton (01:03:27):

So our listeners better consider, uh, University of Tennessee is what I’m here in summer, right?

Summer Roderick (01:03:32):

Oh, oh yeah. Second to none. But I, uh, if you wanna talk supply chain or the, you know, effects that we’re seeing every day, I love talking about comparing notes and talking to people and saying, Hey, you know what, this is what I’ve seen. What are you seeing? Um, just feel free or if you kind of need to know how to get around in Knoxville, you know, there’s a football game coming up, not here, not in Knoxville this weekend. It’s in Georgia. It is down in Athens, but I don’t know where

Scott Luton (01:04:02):

Fingers cross.

Scott Luton (01:04:05):

It’s gonna be tough. Uh, well, hey, Summer, thank you. Thank you for what all that you brought here today. Uh, really admire, uh, what you and CJ both, uh, what you’re, you’re you’ve been doing, what you continue to do and what you’ll be doing in the months and years to come. Dr. Sha Scott, I’ll tell you, this is a representation of what y’all have matriculating through, uh, the University of Tennessee. No wonder. Um, so how can folks connect? Uh, Shay I imagine you do a lot of speaking. Obviously you got this big trip coming up, which, uh, uh, man, you could almost write a book about, uh, uh, that trip. But how can folks connect with you and, and, uh, the University of Tennessee?

Shay Scott (01:04:43):

Sure, I’m an easy guy to find. You can also look for me on, uh, on LinkedIn, uh, Shay, s h a y d Scott is my profile there. You can also Google, uh, it’s easy to find my email address, Avoid those rate my professor.com review sites, uh, if you Google me. But, uh, but other than that, it’s easy to find. Uh, and I, I I, I thank CJ and, and Summer for joining us. They are representative. We’ve got, um, we’ve got almost 2,500 students studying supply chain across our undergrad and graduate programs. Wow. And so, um, uh, those of you looking for supply chain talent, um, uh, uh, hit us up.

Scott Luton (01:05:25):

So Shay with that, uh, said, I, I really appreciate that. Appreciate what you do, appreciate this style, uh, that you help folks through the journey learning and, and, and exploring and, and uncovering what they wanna do in life. So powerful. Uh, I really appreciate that. And, uh, uh, CJ in summer, I really like Shay’s, um, proposition you put out there that, uh, the nicer the building is, is, uh, the less, the less tasteful the barbecue’s gonna be. That’s a new one for me and I, and I’m subscribing to that Shea. Um, but big thanks to all of our guests here today. Big thanks to Dr. Shea Scott again, exec director of the Global Supply Chain Institute at the Uni University of Tennessee. CJ Wallace, a current grad student at, at uh, Tennessee, also a current supply chain practitioner with the Coca-Cola Company and Summer Roger, uh, a current undergrad student, uh, who’s gonna be graduating very soon with a double major in supply chain management and business analytics.

Scott Luton (01:06:22):

Uh, appreciate all of y’all joining us, uh, Shay, CJ in summer. To our listeners, big thanks for you turning in. Hopefully you enjoyed this episode as much as I have. Goodness gracious. Big thanks to Brian at UT for helping us facilitate today’s discussion. But whatever y’all do, listeners, hey, be like this panel, right? Deeds, not words. Gotta lean into this journey we’re on. And with that said, challenging all of our listeners out there to do good, to give forward and to be the change that’s needed. And with that set up, see next time, right back here at Supply Chain now. Thanks everybody.

Intro/Outro (01:06:53):

Thanks for being a part of our supply chain Now, community. Check out all of our programming@supplychainnow.com and make sure you subscribe to Supply Chain now, anywhere you listen to podcasts. And follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram. See you next time on Supply Chain. Now.

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Featured Guests

Shay Scott is the James and Murray Benz Supply Chain Leadership Fellow in the Department of Supply Chain Management of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville’s Haslam College of Business. As executive director of the Global Supply Chain Institute, he leads an organization that works with corporate and institutional partners to advance the knowledge and practice of supply chain management globally through its forum, educational programs, and research. Since 2014, Dr. Scott has also served as a visiting faculty member at the Vienna University of Economics and Business (WU Wien). Scott is the faculty director for UT’s Executive MBA for Global Supply Chain. He is also the faculty director for GSCI’s two MS-SCM programs—the Tri-Continent MS-SCM and the online MS-SCM—in addition to other teaching duties in UT’s graduate, undergraduate, and executive education programs. He previously led the Americas International Logistics organization at Dell, where he had responsibility for Dell’s outbound supply chain from the United States to points throughout the world. While at Dell he also held leadership positions on key projects that helped to pioneer and refine Dell’s renowned supply chain. Dr. Scott has a US patent for innovative logistics processes. Scott holds a Ph.D., an MBA, a Master of Science in Industrial & Systems Engineering, and a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering. His research focuses on international business, supply chain management, and the future of management education. He has consulted with firms across a wide variety of industries. He has studied, worked, and traveled in 55-plus countries on six continents. Connect with Shay on LinkedIn.

Clarence “CJ” Wallace Jr. has worked in Supply Chain for 8 years mostly within the Inventory Management and Demand Planning function. He has held roles both as a group leader and individual contributor creating successful implementations of new SOP and satisfactory annual results within the working capital. Upon completion of his Master Degree, he is looking forward to attain his APIC certification in CPIM and learn the German language. Connect with CJ on LinkedIn.

Summer Roderick started her college career in 2017 at Pellissippi State Community College not knowing what to major in. She chose business because she enjoyed doing business and the intricacies that come with running and managing a business. She graduated from Pellissippi in May of 2020 and was accepted to the University of Tennessee in that same month and started her first semester in August of 2020. She is graduating with a double major in Supply Chain management and Business Analytics. She had one internship with The Classic Cookie Company working through their logistics planning. She is currently in an internship with SAIC working through procurement analytics. She has accepted a job as a Sub-Contracts Administrator with Y-12. Supply Chain is a part of who she is. Before she was aware of the field of Supply Chain she was already planning family trips with secondary plans, layovers, contingency plans, analyzing the best route and back up routes. It has come so naturally to her to operate in Supply Chain that it is not even work for her. It’s a new puzzle that she get to solve every day. Connect with Summer on LinkedIn.

Hosts

Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

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Adrian Purtill

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Joshua Miranda

Marketing Specialist

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

Donna Krache

Director of Communications and Executive Producer

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

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Vicki White

Controller

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

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Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

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

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

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Allison Giddens

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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

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Greg White

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

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

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

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Chris Barnes

Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain is Boring

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

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

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Karin Bursa

Host of TEKTOK

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

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

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Kevin L. Jackson

Host of Digital Transformers

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

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Enrique Alvarez

Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español

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

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

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Kelly Barner

Host of Dial P for Procurement

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

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Mary Kate Soliva

Host, Veteran Voices

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

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Jeff Miller

Host

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

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Amanda Luton

Chief Marketing Officer

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

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Clay Phillips

Business Development Manager

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

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Trisha Cordes

Administrative Assistant

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

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Billy Taylor

Host of Dial P for Procurement

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

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

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

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

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Chantel King

Social Media Manager

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

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

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

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Lori Sofian

Marketing Coordinator

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

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Katherine Hintz

Sales and Marketing Coordinator

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

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Ben Harris

Host

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

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Page Siplon

Host, The Freight Insider

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

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Kristi Porter

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Kevin Brown

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Sofia Rivas Herrera

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

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

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Jose Miguel Irarrazaval

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Demo Perez

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

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

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Kim Winter

Host, Supply Chain Now

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

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

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

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Nick Roemer

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Alex Bramley

Sales Support Intern

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

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