Supply Chain Now
Episode 1080

Hybrid cloud is here to stay; Hybrid cloud is a bridge between on-premise and the cloud, as you can decide the part of the journey you want to undertake. You have to have an infrastructure that allows you to build around these technologies.

-Howard Lo, Vice President at DataON

Episode Summary

Building a modern tech stack isn’t a task – it is a journey. With so much changing outside of companies, it takes real courage to drive digital change internally, especially for companies in the manufacturing space.

This interview brings together an all-star panel. Howard Lo has over 20 years of tech leadership experience and is a Vice President at DataON. Todd Jensen is a Field Sales Manager at Intel Corporation. He has worked in the tech industry since 1996 and has spent the last seven years at Intel focused on partnering with Microsoft to grow their joint business with Azure Edge customers and channels. Christina Cardoza is the Editorial Director at, a global publication that features a wide variety of companies across the Intel Partner Alliance.

In this episode, Howard, Todd, and Christina join co-hosts Scott Luton and Kevin L. Jackson to discuss the unique technology-related challenges – and opportunities – facing manufacturers today:

• How manufacturers can modernize their infrastructure by leveraging the benefits of cloud through a hybrid cloud infrastructure

• Separating tech needs from data quality issues, and doing so in a way that allows companies the flexibility they need

• Why hybrid cloud capabilities may be the perfect way for manufacturers to transition from on-prem hosting to the cloud

Episode Transcript

Intro/Outro (00:03):

Welcome to Supply Chain Now, the voice of global supply chain. Supply Chain Now focuses on the best in the business for our worldwide audience, the people, the technologies, the best practices, and today’s critical issues, the challenges and opportunities. Stay tuned to hear from those making global business happen right here on Supply Chain Now.

Scott Luton (00:32):

Hey. Hey. Good morning, good afternoon, good evening. Scott Luton and, the one and only, Kevin L. Jackson with you here on Supply Chain Now. Welcome to today’s show. Kevin, how are you doing?

Kevin L. Jackson (00:41):

Hey, it’s great today. It’s getting warmer. I think summer is right around the corner.

Scott Luton (00:48):

Man, you really do move at the speed of light, Kevin. I love that. But what you’re probably really giddy about, as am I, is this outstanding show we’ve got teed up here today. We’ve got a wonderful panel. We’ll be covering a lot of ground, especially on what manufacturing leaders – one of our favorite industries – got to keep in mind when it comes to cloud computing in 2023 and beyond. Kevin, heck of a show teed up, right?

Kevin L. Jackson (01:14):

Yeah. Absolutely. And, you know, manufacturers are scared of cloud, I don’t know why. But we’re going to get rid of that fear today, right now.

Scott Luton (01:25):

I love it. All right. Stay tuned, folks. Hey, quick programming, today’s episode is presented in partnership with our friends at Microsoft, who’s doing some pretty cool things in industry, including in the world of manufacturing.

Kevin L. Jackson (01:38):

Yeah. Absolutely. Let’s do this.

Scott Luton (01:41):

So, we’ve got a homerun lineup here today. I want to first introduce Howard Lo, Vice President for Sales and Marketing at DataON, an industry leading provider of hybrid cloud solutions for Microsoft, Azure Stack HCI with cloud-based Azure services. So, Howard brings over 20 years of tech leadership to the table and is based in Orange County, California. Howard, how are you doing?

Howard Lo (02:02):

I’m doing very well. It’s a pleasure to be here.

Scott Luton (02:05):

You bet. Welcome. Welcome. We love your swag, Howard. We’re going to have to get hooked up after the fact today.

Howard Lo (02:12):

Everybody gets one.

Kevin L. Jackson (02:13):


Scott Luton (02:13):

Okay. We’re holding you to that.

Kevin L. Jackson (02:17):

I got a slot in my closet for that.

Scott Luton (02:21):

All right. So, joining Howard, we’ve got Todd Jensen, Field Sales Manager for Intel, the industry leader that is creating world changing technology that enables global progress on a variety of fronts. So, based in Washington State, Todd’s been in the tech industry since 1996, with the last seven years of Intel being focused on partnering with Microsoft to grow their joint business with Azure Edge customers and channels. Todd, how are you doing?

Todd Jensen (02:48):

I’m well. How are you?

Scott Luton (02:50):

We’re doing wonderful. Great to see you here. I really enjoyed our pre-show conversations. And joining Howard and Todd, we’ve got Christina Cardoza, Editorial Director with, a global publication that features a wide variety of companies across the Intel Partner Alliance. Now, since receiving her bachelor’s in journalism from Stony Brook University in 2012, Christina has spent her entire career focused on covering the technology space. So, Christina, great to have you here.

Christina Cardoza (03:20):

Yeah, great to be here. Excited to dig deeper into this conversation today.

Scott Luton (03:24):

We are too. We are too. So, Kevin, we had to work through the agents of the these homerun panelists here today to get them booked, huh?

Kevin L. Jackson (03:33):

Yeah. Absolutely. But, you know, I actually have worked with DataON, specifically because they’re part of the Intel Marketplace and they are highlighted for their use of the hyperconverged infrastructure. And I actually had the opportunity to create some content and publish it with So, I feel like I’m at home here.

Scott Luton (04:03):

Okay. So, you’re like second cousins or something, right? HCI. I love it. Well, let’s get started with our panel in earnest tier. Great to have y’all. We’ll start by level setting a bit here. So, Howard, I want to start with you. So, when you survey global industry, especially the manufacturing space right now, what’s one trend or challenge that you’re tracking more than others?

Howard Lo (04:28):

You know, Scott, that’s a really good question. To start off, thank you for the opportunity. It’s great to be here today. Kevin is an industry leader. Just a little background, DataON has been a long standing partner with Microsoft and Intel specifically, and we pride ourselves on being a forefront of hybrid cloud computing. I speak to customer all day, every morning, every day, and I think one of the key trend I’ve been seeing talking with manufacturing customer is a concept of modernized IT and, really, the concept of hybrid cloud. Those are two key topics that stands out more and more as I talk to industry leaders within the manufacturing, how they continue to innovate and make sure they could look at technology, and how they could modernize their processes with the more advanced computing powers, how they modernize their overall infrastructure with ability to leverage the benefit of cloud or hybrid cloud infrastructure. To me, those are two key trends I’ve been seeing more and more as I have this conversation with manufacturing leaders.

Scott Luton (05:32):

That’s a great start, Howard. I appreciate you sharing. Kevin, I bet you’re seeing a lot of what Howard is describing out here?

Kevin L. Jackson (05:39):

Yeah. One of the things though, specifically in the manufacturing industry, is, they have a love for their on-premise infrastructure. So, the whole concept of having IET in the cloud is kind of scary for them. Howard, do you, do you see that?

Howard Lo (06:04):

I do see that. And I think this is why when we talk to customer, especially manufacturing, we always emphasize the concept of having a journey. It’s a journey to the hybrid cloud. It is not a one step solve all the issue discussion. Like you say, many people are not used to putting all their workload in the cloud. There would be security discussion, data sovereignty discussion, performance discussion. So, we have conversations all about which part of the journey would you like to have that conversation and how data on Microsoft and Intel could really help you start that journey. And, really, every part of journey require different facet of technology, and our goal is provide those capability and knowledge and advice to the customer so they can have the right journey.

Kevin L. Jackson (06:55):

Yeah. I think it’s also important to note that it’s kind of like a journey without a destination. Because of the constant change across the industry vertical and information technology, you always have to understand what’s coming, what’s your business model, how the technology can actually help you with your goals, and how you may tweak, change, upgrade your hybrid IET environment as things move forward.

Scott Luton (07:30):

Nope. There’s certainly no finish line, it doesn’t seem, ever, in our efforts to do it quicker, faster, stronger, more secure. So, I want to bring in Todd. Todd, talk about some of what you’re seeing out there in global industry.

Todd Jensen (07:44):

You know, to kind of echo what both Howard and Kevin were talking about, the decision point is really about what’s best for your company, not should I be here or should I be there. But based upon your individual need, what do you need to have deployed, and then how do you do that in a fashion that enables flexibility. And so, some of the new trends right now around containers breaking up the VM structure and using a container structure that can be consistent across your clouds, if you have a presence in the public cloud, and your on-prem cloud, your factory cloud, your IT cloud, your factory cloud, all of the different things that you may have. Having right ones kind of run anywhere kind of scenario kind of helps in that distribution of the compute.

Todd Jensen (08:45):

Because latency is a real issue. Data sovereignty is a very real issue. And while you may be able to solve that with a public cloud, the cost structure may not be in place to solve it either. So, there’s lots of ways to do this. But the real question is, it is a journey and it’s a journey that changes over time. So, because it changes over time, you need to build in flexibility when you start. And building that flexibility is around management. And what I see more and more is the containerization of the work, of the applications, the IP, the other things getting it into a container structure that lets it be fairly – I’ll call it slippery. It’s probably the not right term, but it lets it slide across. It can run on your premises. It can run on a DataON thing. It can run on an Azure thing or an AWS thing or whoever’s thing. That’s where you need that flexibility.

Scott Luton (09:45):

You know, Todd, let’s go with your term. I think slippery is a pretty awkward observation, right? Highly technical. I love it. Hey, Kevin, before I get you to weigh in on what Todd shared, let me bring in Christina as well and just get some opening comments here on what we’re seeing out in the industry. Christina, what are you seeing?

Christina Cardoza (10:03):

Yeah. Great. Thanks, Scott. To piggyback off of what Howard and Todd was saying, I think the big trend we are seeing, or I would say the big keyword, is modernization. You know, we talk at to a lot of Intel Partner Alliance members, and across the board, they’re trying to modernize their operations. And that incorporates many things which we’ll discuss today, like automation, cloud, and AI. And because like what Todd and Kevin were saying, this is a journey without a destination. This ongoing evolution, it makes it a trend, but also a challenge because there’s many different ways to go about it. There’s many new ways to go about it everyday. And while manufacturers know the importance of Industry 4.0, I don’t think it’s always clear how they can get there. So, it’s a struggle on how to leverage all this data. But while it is a broad trend, I think the biggest takeaway is that they’re all just trying to modernize and compete in this ongoing digital transformation world.

Scott Luton (10:56):

Well said, Christina. The struggle is real, for sure. So, Kevin, cherry picking there, we heard from Howard and Christina about leveling up. And Howard made a great comment about we’re not trying to microwave over do anything overnight, no magic wand, it’s a deliberate journey. Of course, Todd spoke about containerization and how slippery some of this change in some of this digital transformation can be. And, of course, modernization. Everybody’s looking to compete stronger and safer and deliver more for customers alike and win new business. Kevin, what’d you hear amongst our panel here?

Kevin L. Jackson (11:33):

Well, one of the things that’s kind of interesting, cloud computing is all about not really focusing on the technology. The technology is supposed to be obscured from the user. You’re looking at technology services. But the technology is key to being able to be seamless across your public cloud, your private cloud, and maybe in multiple public clouds that you may need to work across. And Todd was talking about containers, because containers is now the way that you can take a consistent build across multiple clouds, your private cloud and your public cloud. And I think that’s really critical to protecting the data. And that’s something I know Howard was talking about, the fear of losing your data or data protection. And I know Christina, from her point of view, she has to educate the market, not only on what’s available today, but what’s coming down the road. Because you’re right, change is real, but it’s also accelerating.

Kevin L. Jackson (13:12):

Before, people would kind of be scared of the new thing and they would say, “Let me wait a few years before I adopt that new version.” But nowadays, if you wait three or four months, your clients, your customers would leave because they expect you to be right on the leading edge. So, this is a new world and manufacturers really need to understand that change is real, it’s continuous, and it’s accelerating.

Scott Luton (13:50):

That’s right. And, certainly, as you point out and rightfully so, Kevin, there are big costs to being slow to embrace new technology that can change a game for your teammates, your colleagues, the team, but also the market and your customers. So, we’re going to get into the center part of our conversation, folks. As y’all can tell, we’ve got an outstanding panel. We’re going to move into the heart of the matter here. And I’m going to start with Todd here. Really, the whole panel here touched on this a little bit, but I want to dive a little deeper, what must manufacturing leaders keep in mind this year in 2023 and beyond when it comes to leveraging the power of cloud computing?

Todd Jensen (14:35):

One of the main things they need to do is they need to think about the end they’re after. And not only the am I solving my immediate production need, but how do I build AI security, all of these other things that are kind of coming, how do they build that into their approach and their platform. Because if you’re just starting, the choices you make at the beginning are really important. And so, you want to make sure that as you make those choices, you know the end state you’re trying to get to. 

Todd Jensen (15:14):

So, if you’re doing a big AI kind of push, you’re going to have a bunch of VR stuff, what is the infrastructure, what is the management pieces, the management capability you’re going to have as a result. So, as an example, if you’re going to have a bunch of visual inferencing that’s going to be working, how do you manage all of those devices? How do you keep all those devices up to date? What is the compute that happens on each one of those devices versus centrally? How do you want to structure that? And how smart do you want to have each individual piece of the compute chain? Because all of that has cost implications, they also has throughput implications, how quickly do you need to make decisions. So, it’s more than just I want to just enable a visual inference thing, a quality check, visual quality check of my products. How quickly do you need to have that done? How does that play into your manufacturing processes in your manufacturing line?

Todd Jensen (16:28):

So, as you work through this, you really have to think almost like you’re designing a product. Like, when you’re manufacturing, you design a product, you think about all the different ways in which that product’s going to be used, and how it’s going to break, and how you’re going to manage it over time. It is the same thing when you start getting into a real distributed computing model, you need to take that same kind of due diligence and approach, and then leave yourself as much flexibility as you can to ensure you can make changes over time.

Scott Luton (16:58):

So, Todd, I love that, starting with the outcomes in mind. Because what I’m hearing you say is, let’s not make it more complex than it has to be. No more. No less. Let’s build it based on what we’re after. Is that right, Todd?

Todd Jensen (17:13):

You build it off of where you want to be, and then as much as you can build in flexibility. Because, as mentioned, technology is going to change over time, so there’s two ways you can approach it. You can either try to future-proof yourself or you do spot bills and you try to minimize your cost on your spot bill, and then you just look to replace that over time. Depending on your business, you may choose different approaches. Like, am I going to go a minimum cost quickest deployment but I’m after a very targeted activity. That if you know you’re going to have that activity, that business process that’s going to be unchanged for a good amount of time, that’s a good approach to go. But if you know things are going to change in your factory line or something else, then you may want to build on a little bit more flexibility because it’s not cheap to swap out hardware every four, five years.

Scott Luton (18:13):

That’s not going to make CFOs happy. Kevin, I’ll get you to weigh in on what we heard here from Todd.

Kevin L. Jackson (18:19):

Yeah. One of the things you really understand as a manufacturer is that you have to think about manufacturing for a marketplace of one, because it’s really all about customization. Every customer wants what they want, and this requires a lot of visibility. Not only visibility with what the end client and customer wants, but the data that is needed to reflect those desires and needs. And as well, I mean, this is a Supply Chain Now show, we have to have visibility into the supply chain so that you can know what components are needed when they are needed, so that you can meet the customer’s expectation. And this is critical in manufacturing.

Scott Luton (19:17):

Well said, Kevin. Because visibility and supply chain, as you mentioned, it’s not nice to have anymore as it was years ago. You got to have it. It’s a must-have. It’s table stakes. Christina, I want to bring you in here. Again, we’re thinking about what manufacturing leaders got to keep in mind when it comes to cloud computing here, this year, next, and beyond, what comes to your mind?

Christina Cardoza (19:38):

Yeah. Absolutely. So, we’ve heard a couple of different buzzwords, hybrid cloud, private cloud, public cloud. But when I talk to organizations, I think there’s a misconception that it’s all or nothing. They think that they have to go all cloud or be all prem. But there are many different approaches that they can take, and that doesn’t mean moving to cloud means everything has to move off of premise. So, I would agree with what Todd said, manufacturers should look at their outcomes, operations, and solutions, and then figure out what their approach should be from there. While the cloud will give them the freedom and flexibility they need, on-premise will give them the control of their data and hardware and platforms. So, you know, a hybrid cloud approach can be very valuable because it’s going to take some burden off the IT staff by moving things to the cloud, but then it’s going to give them the ability to keep more mission critical applications on-prem so that everything remains reliable, up and running.

Christina Cardoza (20:32):
And then, the last thing I’ll just add is that, you know, there’s also an edge component to this. I see a lot of organizations utilizing a cloud edge approach, moving the data closer to the source so they can gain real-time insights into their operation’s visibility, and that allows them to improve operations. And then, they use the cloud to dig deeper and make predictions based on what they’re seeing.

Scott Luton (20:55):

Love that. And, Kevin, I’m going to get you to weigh in on what we heard there. I want to bring Howard in really quick. Christina, a lot of good stuff, you and Todd and Kevin. Howard, what do manufacturing leaders got to keep in mind when it comes to leveraging the power of cloud computing this year and beyond?

Howard Lo (21:11):

A lot come to mind. I think what Todd said, and Christina and Kevin said all applies. But in the real world today, I think the manufacturing leader really need to embrace a technology aspect of what’s available and understand the roadmap. The great news is, there is a hybrid cloud platform today that allows you to do everything you want. And let me emphasize on that, and not to plug anything of what Intel or Microsoft does, but that’s kind of our world that I live in on a daily basis.

Howard Lo (21:49):

A hybrid cloud means that you could build an on-premises hardware infrastructure that sits in your data center. What Kevin says, you own your data. You have the scary thing about not putting your data on a cloud. You own your data. By the same time taking cloud services and render on-premises at your will, that is the concept of Azure Stack HCI. It’s a hyperconverged infrastructure that sits in your data center, that runs your traditional workload, storage, compute, AI on the edge. But at the same time, you could go to Azure and say, “I want this Kubernetes service container and bring it on-premise and run it here in my data center,” and all I do is orchestrate. I want to take the virtual desktop workload and put it down here. I want to manage SQL from the cloud and put it down here. You still own your data. You control the data sovereignty, privacy, security, but you are taking a power of cloud and doing orchestration. That is hybrid cloud. That is the journey of where you decide how much you want to run on-premises, how much you want to take advantage of cloud. That is true hybrid cloud. That’s one piece of it.

Howard Lo (23:05):

The second piece that I think was very important, I think alluded by even Kevin or Christina is, hey, there are multiple clouds out there. You don’t have to pick one. I’m not an advocate saying whether or not it’s Microsoft, AWS, or Google. They’re all great in my opinion. However, the ability to manage multi-cloud is also a critical piece. That’s what Microsoft Arc is about, ability to have a single management plane in the cloud and manage all your workload either on-prem, just like ACI, AWS workload, Google workload, everything as a service. Now, you can manage everything as a single pane of glass, as a multi-cloud management platform.

Howard Lo (23:47):

These technology power are available today with the help of Intel and Microsoft, data is engaging with manufacturing customer who has hundreds of sites with Edge computing, with the cloud, central data center, but they’re taking advantage of this hybrid cloud platform and really, really getting on this hybrid cloud journey. And to me, this is the key of what this hybrid cloud on-prem really come about, is ability to understand where you’re at and taking advantage of technology today.

Scott Luton (24:18):

Howard, I love that. And, Kevin, I’m coming to you. I think that Howard’s passion alone could power a manufacturing plant. Did y’all hear that come through? I love that. Really, that speaks to me.

Kevin L. Jackson (24:28):

Oh, yeah. Absolutely.

Scott Luton (24:29):

So, Kevin, I’ll get you to weigh in on what you heard what Todd, Christina, and Howard all kind of shared in terms of what leaders have to keep in mind. And then, let’s get your take as well.

Kevin L. Jackson (24:41):

So, I think the big tech takeaway here is that hybrid means multiple options. And there’s a need to have visibility in those options and to control those options in real time that align with your business model or your business process. And no one option will support all of your business processes. Every business process may have a different structure, you know, 20 percent cloud, 80 percent on-prem, no 50 percent cloud, 50percent on-prem. And that actually may change from day-to-day or product-to-product. So, the decision makers need to have tools like Arc, for instance, that will enable you to look at what services are available, the cost of those services from the different sources because that cost will affect your end price, the availability of those different services so that you can pick, choose, select, deselect at will.

Kevin L. Jackson (26:04):

But the other, I think, even more important aspect of this, and this is really at the manufacturers, this is what the CIOs need to understand, is, you have to have the governance that’s designed around a hybrid IET or a hybrid cloud model. Your workers, your middle management need to understand the trades between doing something on-premise and doing something in the cloud, and have guidance on how to pick and choose. And this is not just a technology thing, it is a finance thing. It is a cost of goods thing. It is a customer service thing, being able to deliver what the customer wants on time with the right configurations that they want. So, it’s a hybrid industry. It’s hybrid IET. It’s hybrid cloud. It’s hybrid business processes. And you need to have the governance to support this is the way to do modern global business today.

Scott Luton (27:38):

All right. Kevin, I love the picture that you paint. And you’re going to pose an interesting question here in just a moment to our panel about what’s going to come. They’re going to break out their crystal ball in just a second. All right. So, before we get into this next question, I can’t wait to see what y’all have to say about, if your crystal balls are working – mine’s been broke for at least six or seven years it feels like now – Christina, respond to what we heard there. We just finished a segment where all of us were talking about what manufacturing leaders got to keep in mind, your quick follow-up commentary there.

Christina Cardoza (28:14):

Yeah. I would just add that I love what Kevin said, you know, hybrid cloud really means that you have multiple options or multiple different choices. Like, I mentioned earlier, organizations feel like they have to go all-in-one thing or nothing or sometimes they avoid moving to the cloud because they feel like they’re going to get locked into a different vendor or not be able to scale and future-proof, like we’ve been talking about. But I love hearing about the products, like the one that Microsoft offers, because it’s enabling them to really pick and choose the approach that they need at a cost that is appropriate to them. So, like Kevin said, this is an investment also. And so, it helps them make the best investment and really future-proof their operations, you know, going forward.

Scott Luton (29:00):

Well said. There’s lots and lots of options. And that’s a beautiful thing, Christina. Howard, let’s come to you, get your quick follow up to what we heard here.

Howard Lo (29:08):

Yeah. I think for me, I want to make sure I talk specific use cases, be real to the audience here. When we talk about hybrid cloud – and I’ll use very specific use cases – for many manufacturing company that we talk to, they have AI intelligence at the edge, ability to have an infrastructure at the edge. In many sites, the ability to collect these data is critical, so they have these processes at the edge. Now, that’s on-prem. Hybrid cloud comes in, is when you have storing all these data. Why do you have to spend all the money storing? You can put in the cloud. Now, you can see very easily how an on-prem and cloud connects together, where you have AI at the edge, where you have GPU from Intel at the edge, and then you have the cloud capability from Microsoft. You could collect all the data and analyze in the cloud and really bring it all together. That is a very specific manufacturing use case that our manufacture uses today as a hybrid cloud model to take advantage of on-prem and cloud in a hybrid cloud environment.

Scott Luton (30:14):

I love that. You get your cake and eat it, too, in many ways by leveraging different components of the solution. Well said there, Howard. Todd, as we round out this segment here, what’d you hear or what’s your final comment?

Todd Jensen (30:28):

Yeah. If you’re in IT or OT, you have to get educated. You cannot just, you know, have a sales guy come in and say, “Well, this is what you should be doing.” Because there’s so much in the choice that you need to make, that you really need to get educated around the technologies and then how you want to best use those technologies. Because the choices is so high or you have so many choices, therefore, you need to get real specific and get real targeted around the things that you care about. And, also, the cost structures and the infrastructure you existing have plus what you’re going to add onto. And you need to not think about it in terms of things that are in my data center versus things that run in the factory. In reality, it’s all going to be the same in the future. There is no difference between IT and OT. And that management capabilities of, like, ARC and other cloud vendors that have management capabilities are going to make that happen. That, in containers, are going to make it happen. So, there’s no difference between IT and OT in the future. So, just embrace all those business partners. If you’re an IT guy, if you’re an OT guy, start leveraging your IT guys. You can’t be on separate pages.

Scott Luton (31:52):

I love that. You got to educate yourself where you started. And knowledge and bandwidth is certainly power. Okay. So, Kevin, I want to toss it over to you. Todd, gave us a natural segue because he was kind of talking about future looking. Where are we going next with our esteemed panel?

Kevin L. Jackson (32:08):

Well, first of all, the future is now. We’ve been talking about the future in the 2020s, you know, forever. And we’re there. It’ll be ten years before you would renew your IET. But now an IET is updated every month. I mean, your smartphone, you put it down when you go to sleep, and the next day it’s a new smartphone with all new capabilities. So, what do we, in the manufacturing industry, need to think about or expect in the next two or three years? So, I’d really like to get a fearless, bold prediction from our panel on that. So, maybe, Christina.

Christina Cardoza (33:04):

Yeah. Absolutely. It’s hard to pick just one or even to predict because, like you said, it’s constantly evolving and changing everyday. So, I don’t know if this is a bold and fearless one. It is a little bit of a safe and stable prediction that I have over the next couple of years. But I’m going to say, you know, the importance of 5G and private 5G in the manufacturing industry over the next couple of years. We’ve heard about 5G in the consumer space, but I think it’s still fairly new in the manufacturing space, because we’ve had to ensure that the products work. Imagine if a 5G device stops working, it can take down the entire operation, and that could be really bad for manufacturers. So, I think over the next couple of years, this move to 5G, it’s going to become more stable. We’re going to see more manufacturers leveraging the technology for just speed and latency to power things, like the modernized operations we’ve been talking about, autonomous robots, autonomous vehicles, improving worker safety.

Christina Cardoza (34:02):

Now, how does this fit into this cloud conversation that we’ve been having? I think it’s just going to help manufacturers become more effective as they move to the cloud and as they work to modernize their operations. It’s going to help them run more smoothly, improve security, enable that edge computing piece that I was talking about earlier, and really streamline the operations.

Christina Cardoza (34:23):

And then, the last thing I’ll just mention before we let the other panelists go is just, I hear a lot of organizations already looking towards 6G or talking towards 6G, and it can be really exciting to sort of jump on the shiniest object in the room. But I would say, slow down. We are still years away before 6G becomes a reality for manufacturers. The value is going to be in 5G, and so that’s where I would put my focus over the next couple of years when talking to manufacturers.

Kevin L. Jackson (34:52):

Yeah. I really like your viewpoint on that. I always look at 5G as the data center, you know, compute and storage, leaving the data center, and going out over the network to the edge. So, that’s why I’m really interested in what Todd has to say what’s going to happen in the next two or three years. Because I mean, Intel is really about that technology in the data center. So, what’s bold? What do you see coming?

Todd Jensen (35:29):

Yeah. If I want to be real bold, I’d turn around and say in the next three to five years, security on-premise in the cloud is going to be just as good as on-premise. And some of the government regulatory things that are kind of outside of the technology industry’s control have a way on what you do. The other is, in three to five years, AI will be mainstream. And if you haven’t already embraced it, you’re late.

Kevin L. Jackson (36:01):

If you haven’t embraced it, you are already late. Wow. Wow. That’s a bold statement. So, Howard, as you are talking to your customers and you’re trying to help them understand the journey, I would imagine you have a near term, a midterm, and a long term for that journey. But could you sort of give us an idea of what’s the scale of your short term? Is it two months? It’s not two years anymore. And when you look at this journey, what is in two to three years for your clients?

Howard Lo (36:50):

It shouldn’t be a surprise on my prediction. My prediction is hybrid clouds here to stay. Hybrid cloud is that bridge between on-premise and the cloud, and for you to decide what part of journey you want to be. I think embracing all the technology and a prediction from Todd and Christina, you know, you have to have an infrastructure that you can really build around these technology. And hybrid cloud allows you to do that. You could bring security from the cloud to be hybrid cloud. You could build governance in hybrid cloud. You could have all your workload on-prem move it around in the cloud. So, we believe hybrid cloud’s here to stay. And if you are a customer and you haven’t really stepped on this journey, definitely do look into it, understanding what that looks like, and understanding how you could get your organization to take advantage of this technology and this movement of hybrid cloud.

Kevin L. Jackson (37:47):

Wow. Thank you. That’s awesome.

Scott Luton (37:49):

So, Kevin, I love that collection of predictions. Now, as we all love bold and fearless, I want to go back to something that Christina said, because, I bet, looking back over the last two or three years, we’d all love more safe and stable predictions and state of being as well, right? All right. So, Kevin, before we make sure folks can connect with our incredible panel here, we’ve really enjoyed and learned a lot from our conversations, do you want to throw in your own bold and fearless prediction, Kevin?

Kevin L. Jackson (38:23):

Well, I predict that hybrid cloud will be the natural solution across every industry. And that the visibility into your data, the need around data protection, data privacy, the regulations that government was going to put in place, all of that is going to support the transition and the use of global hybrid cloud environments. And I believe that’s true because that’s the only way industry can meet their customer’s requirements and demands. I mean, we’re not going to go away from globalization. It’s not going away. And manufacturers are going to be in the thick of that and hybrid cloud is the only way. So, I’m there with Howard.

Scott Luton (39:37):

Well said, Kevin. More production shifts, more transparency, more visibility, a lot more automation in markets that, maybe, have been a little behind the curve. And we’re going to have to have many of the technology game plans, that are our panelists have spoken to here today, to take advantage of that and take hold of the opportunity that exists out there.

Scott Luton (40:00):

Okay. I really have enjoyed it. And this could easily be like a War and Remembrance eight part series with this panel here. But we’re going to have to leave it here. A little throwback to any fellow kids of the ’80s out there. Christina Cardoza, Editorial Director with, how can folks connect with you and all the great work you do?

Christina Cardoza (40:21):

Yeah. I would invite our listeners to visit, that’s the URL. And we have, you know, a wealth of articles and podcasts on this topic as well as other technology trends and business solutions in the IOT space. And I won’t give you the alphabet soup of all of my LinkedIn and Twitter handle, but you can find social media channels on the upper right corner of our website. And you can also find out how to connect with me there as well. I’d love to connect with you on Twitter and LinkedIn and continue this conversation.

Scott Luton (40:52):

I love that. Thank you so much, Christina. I appreciate what you do to move the industry forward for sure. Howard Lo, Howard, how can folks connect with you as Vice President for Sales and Marketing at DataON? How can folks connect with you?

Howard Lo (41:06):

Just visit our website,, and I’m sure there’s, there’s plenty people there that could engage with you live or you could email us. There’s plenty of way to reach people at DataON, so just Google or type in, and look at all the content in understanding the hybrid cloud journey that many, many customer diverse is on the website with their testimonial, especially manufacturing customers and what they did in this journey. And happy to engage.

Scott Luton (41:37):

Love that. Thank you, Howard. And we’re going to make it easy based on what Christina and Howard have both shared. You’re going to find information about our guests, including ways, one click away from connecting with them. All right. So, Todd Jensen, Field Sales Manager for Intel – really enjoyed your perspective as well – how can folks connect with you and Intel?

Todd Jensen (41:56):

It’s the same as Howard, go to In there, there’s market ready solutions, there’s solution briefs, there’s things you can go look at. You can see products from DataON there. You can see products from other manufacturers. You’ll get to see how people are actually using the cutting edge stuff, so Intel AI, Intel market ready Solutions. There’s a bunch as it spans across, because as you go from kind of the heavier edge in IT all the way down to little teeny devices at the edge, that’s a big span of compute difference in how you manage those things. So, get into any one of these sites and dig in and start to learn because there’s a lot to learn.

Scott Luton (42:39):

That’s right. Every moment you wait, you’re getting behind, ain’t it right, Todd?

Todd Jensen (42:44):

That’s right. That’s right.

Scott Luton (42:45):

Well, big thanks to Todd Jensen and the Intel team for all they do. All right. Before we go here, of course, Kevin, big thanks to our cloud of partners over at Microsoft for helping to make today’s show happen. Kevin, how can folks connect with you and learn more about Digital Transformers?

Kevin L. Jackson (43:02):

Well, you can connect with me through my many articles on For the past few years, I’ve really enjoyed learning a lot about the Intel market ready marketplace and all the technologies, including DataON and others. And we highlight how industries are leveraging advanced technologies, including cloud computing on digital transformers, where we highlight the companies and executives that are transforming their industries executives, like Howard Lo, by the way. And you can find us on Supply Chain Now. We are there.

Scott Luton (43:53):

It’s just that easy.

Kevin L. Jackson (43:53):

Yes, it’s just that easy. But we also like people to keep track of Digital Transformers because we highlight a lot of the technologies that are layered on top of Microsoft Azure to make it easier, better, quicker, faster to address and target and attain your business goals through hybrid cloud.

Scott Luton (44:22):

I love this stuff there, Kevin. And as you kind of implied, there’s so much more we got to talk about, so folks need to lean into the great work Kevin and the team are doing at Digital Transformers. You can find that wherever you get your podcast from.

Scott Luton (44:36):

Okay. Big thanks again to Howard and Todd and Christina. Big thanks to our friends at Microsoft. Kevin, always a pleasure to knock out these episodes with you.

Kevin L. Jackson (44:43):

Thank you. I enjoyed this. This is fun.

Scott Luton (44:47):

I learned a ton. I think I’ve got 18 pages of acronyms I got to go back and study. So, like Todd suggested, I got to educate myself.

Kevin L. Jackson (44:55):


Scott Luton (44:55):

But, hey, to our listeners, hopefully, you’ve enjoyed this episode as much as we have learned a ton here between this outstanding panel. Find Supply Chain Now and Digital Transformers wherever you get your podcast. Scott Luton signing off for now, challenging all of our listeners to do good, to give forward, and to be the change that’s needed. We’ll see you next time right back here at Supply Chain Now. Thanks everybody.

Intro/Outro (45:17):

Thanks for being a part of our Supply Chain Now community. Check out all of our programming at, 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

Christina Cardoza Prior to joining, Christina was the News Editor of the software development magazine SD Times and IT operations online publication ITOps Times. She received her bachelor’s degree in journalism from Stony Brook University, and has been writing about software development and technology throughout her entire career. Connect with Christina on LinkedIn.

Todd Jensen, For the past seven years Todd has partnered with Microsoft to grow their joint business with Azure’s Edge customers and channels. Special focus has been on establishing a great customer experience using Intel products with Azure Stack HCI, Windows Server, and SQL. Prior to returning to Intel, he worked at Microsoft in Enterprise + Cloud in the business planning organization for 6 years. Prior to Microsoft, he worked for Infosys as a business consultant. He began his career at Intel and finished his time at Intel developing SMB sales programs in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. Connect with Todd on LinkedIn.

Howard Lo is a senior sales and marketing professional with a primary focus on helping technology companies through multiple stages of Go-to-Market including marketing & lead generation, inside / field sales, and customer success with revenue growth. Connect with Howard on LinkedIn.


Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

Kevin L. Jackson

Host, Digital Transformers

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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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Katherine Hintz

Creative Director, Producer, Host

Katherine Hintz, MBA is a marketing professional 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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Kim Reuter


From humble beginnings working the import docks, representing Fortune 500 giants, Ford, Michelin Tire, and Black & Decker; to Amazon technology patent holder and Nordstrom Change Leader, Kimberly Reuter has designed, implemented, and optimized best-in-class, highly scalable global logistics and retail operations all over the world. Kimberly’s ability to set strategic vision supported by bomb-proof processes, built on decades of hands-on experience, has elevated her to legendary status. Sought after by her peers and executives for her intellectual capital and keen insights, Kimberly is a thought leader in the retail logistics industry.

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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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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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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., 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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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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Kevin Brown

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Jose Miguel Irarrazaval

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Vicki White


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

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Allison Giddens


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

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

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Billy Taylor


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

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

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

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

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Tandreia Bellamy


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

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

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

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

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Marty Parker


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

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

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Laura Lopez

Marketing Coordinator

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

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Jake Barr


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

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Marcia Williams


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

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Luisa Garcia

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Astrid Aubert

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Constantine Limberakis


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

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Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

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

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

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Greg White

Principal & Host

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

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

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Chris Barnes

Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain is Boring

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

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

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Tyler Ward

Director of Sales

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

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

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

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Kevin L. Jackson

Host of Digital Transformers

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

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Enrique Alvarez

Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español

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

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

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Kelly Barner

Host of Dial P for Procurement

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

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Mary Kate Soliva

Host, Veteran Voices

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

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Amanda Luton

Vice President, Production

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

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Clay Phillips

Business Development Manager

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

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Trisha Cordes

Administrative Assistant

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

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Chantel King

Social Media Manager

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

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

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

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Lori Sofian

Marketing Coordinator

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

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Katherine Hintz

Director, Customer Experience

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

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Mary Kate Love

Chief of Staff & Host

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

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

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Joshua Miranda

Marketing Specialist

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

Donna Krache

Director of Communications and Executive Producer

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

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