Supply Chain Now
Episode 1124

The supply chain is more than just purchasing and logistics. It can revolutionize businesses and industries. Some people see that as disruption, but I see it as an opportunity to improve by embracing the supply chain.

-Dr. Clinton Purtell, Assistant Clinical Professor of Logistics and Operations, University of North Texas

Episode Summary

When Dr. Clinton Purtell was deciding which university to join after earning his PhD, he noticed something unique about the University of North Texas. Over 50 percent of the students identify as minorities, and 20 to 25 percent of the students are neurodiverse. That diversity gives the students a certain ‘grit factor’ that won him over, and today he is the Assistant Clinical Professor of Logistics and Operations, working with the students featured in this episode.

Regan Weaver is a junior at the University of North Texas, where his major is Logistics and Supply Chain Management with a minor in Marketing, and Zachary Kvale is a senior at the University of North Texas graduating in May with a BBA in Finance and a BBA in Business Integrated Studies with a focus in Enterprise Management and Logistics and Supply Chain Management.

In this interview, you will hear Dr. Purtell, Regan, Zachary, and host Scott Luton discuss:

• Trends, opportunities, and challenges they are watching in global supply chains

• The power of breaking free from the ‘echo chamber’ and getting to learn and grow in a diverse academic environment

• Key moments from the classroom that are setting this generation of students up to fulfill their dreams by finding fulfilling roles in supply chain management

 

 

 

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 (00:31):

Hey, good morning, good afternoon, good evening. Scott Luton with you here on Supply Chain. Now welcome to today’s show. Today, we got a big, big show here today. We’re continuing our series that we like to call the now Generation, not the next Generation. They’re already making an impact, and we’re sitting down with students and educators from some of the leading supply chain management programs around the world. Today we’re meeting with a great team of professionals and students from the University of North Texas who ranked number six on the 2022 Gartner Top 25 list for North American undergraduate supply chain programs. So, with that said, I wanna take a minute, as y’all can tell, we’re kinda excited. We’ve gotten a lot of feedback about this series, and I can’t wait to share with you this panel we have here. So let’s introduce him, uh, starting with Regan Weaver, sophomore at the University of North Texas. He is a major in logistics and supply chain management, minoring in marketing, what a great combination that is. And he’s also president for the Logistics and Supply Chain Management student organization. Regan, how you doing?

Regan Weaver (01:35):

I’m doing all right. How’s it going, Scott?

Scott Luton (01:37):

Doing wonderful. Great to have you here. I look forward to hearing from you. Uh, joining Regan, we have Zach Quali, senior at the University of North Texas. Now he’s graduating in May with a degree in, uh, finance and a degree in business integrated studies. But wait, there’s more. He’s got a focus in enterprise management and logistics, supply chain management. So both Regan and Zach Mann y y’all are gonna be dangerous with all this knowledge. Zach, great to have you here today.

Zachary Kvale (02:06):

Good to be here. All right.

Scott Luton (02:08):

And then joining our students is Dr. Clinton Patel, assistant Professor of logistics and operations management, and associate director of the Jim McNat Institute for Logistics Research at the University of North Texas. Now, as a practitioner and executive leader, Dr. Patel has spent over two decades, we’re careful not to go over that and date people, but over two decades in a number of Fortune 500 and Euro Fi, uh, Euro 50 firms leading global supply chains and so much more.

Scott Luton (02:38):

Dr. Patel, how you doing?

Clinton Purtell (02:39):

Fantastic. Glad to be here, Scott.

Scott Luton (02:41):

Well, I appreciate that, and thanks for your facilitation, as busy as y’all are, uh, with, uh, bringing your perspective, but also Regan and Zach’s perspective to the show here today. Alright, so we’re gonna start by getting to know y’all a little better, right? I’ve, I’ve really enjoyed the pre-show session here today. I wish, you know, uh, we should have recorded that and dropped that as a, as a supplemental podcast. But, uh, let’s start with getting to our guests a little better. So, Regan, uh, I’m a big old baseball nerd. I’m a big Atlanta Braves fan, have been since, uh, the eighties, right? And we’ve seen some ups and we’ve seen some downs. But understand you’re a big baseball, uh, uh, uh, guru as well, aficionado, but you played the sport. So tell us what positions you play.

Regan Weaver (03:23):

Absolutely, Scott. I was a left-handed pitcher. I kind of grew up in Marcus at Marcus High School in Flower Mounds, and I played first base and pitcher. I was actually left-handed as well.

Scott Luton (03:34):

Okay. Were you a home run hitter, man?

Regan Weaver (03:37):

I, I like to think I was, but, uh, but sometimes I feel like I was just a bass knock every now and then. <laugh>,

Scott Luton (03:43):

Hey, lots of singles. Win lots of playoffs and World Series trophies, right? Yes, sir. Um, so beyond your playing career, uh, who’s your favorite team in the Major League baseball?

Regan Weaver (03:53):

Growing up I loved the Rangers and especially kind of right here in Arlington, but then I kind of got into liking the Astros where they started winning, kind of hopped on the bandwagon, and especially cuz working out with their closer in high school, Ryan Presley, uh, really, really made me an Astros fan.

Scott Luton (04:11):

Man, that has gotta be cool. I bet you got some stories there that you maybe can’t share here on our podcast, but be able to work alongside a major leaguer, especially a good one. That has gotta be special Regan. All right. Uh, and we’ll get some tips maybe on how to throw a, throw a curve ball from Regan later in the show. We’ll see. Uh, alright, so Zach, uh, now you’re, uh, I am not an athlete, so I could, I can, um, bond with Regan on his love for the game, but I was a very mediocre church softball player, and that’s the, that was the extent of my athletic career. But Zach, you love documentaries and I love me and my wife Amanda, love documentaries, and there’s so many great ones now across, you know, all the streaming platforms. Um, what is one of your favorite recent documentaries, Zach?

Zachary Kvale (04:54):

So, one that I really liked recently was, uh, about the Disney Fast Pass and line system, sort of its history over, you know, the, the course of the Disney amusement parks and just sort of how they’ve gone about changing it, implementing new versions of it, and, you know, so on.

Scott Luton (05:10):

So to our listeners out there, uh, and what’s the name of that? Well, again, what’s the name of that documentary? Zach?

Zachary Kvale (05:15):

I, I would have to check on the name, but on YouTube, if you look up Disney Fast Pass history, you can probably find it right there.

Scott Luton (05:22):

There it is. We’ll see if we can add a link in there. Um, lemme tell y’all, I, if, if any of our listeners hadn’t been to Disney and especially hasn’t taken a, a like a family, uh, we have a family of five to Disney, you know, during the height of the season, as Zach knows, well, two hour, two hour waiting lines, hour and a half, 90 minutes, two hours waiting for a ride. Those fast passes that he’s talking about allows you to basically to, to zip in and with, when we add that Florida heat with those long lines, man, those are some valuable things really added to the, the, the park experience. So, uh, Zach, I appreciate that. And I also also appreciate your, um, you like, um, studying tons of information, data analytics, which we’re gonna touch on, on, on again soon. And of course, customer experience, there’s a lot of analytics helping to fuel that, uh, gains there. Alright, and that brings us to Dr. Perel again, thanks for all of your facilitation. Now, Dr. Perel, I understand that you come from a big athletic family, uh, and you’re married to a former All-American softball player, Amber Pertel. So what position did Amber play and where’d she go to school? Yeah,

Clinton Purtell (06:31):

So Amber grew up in Oklahoma. We were both small town Oklahoma people. Uh, her entire family was softball, so her sister also played collegiate softball and nieces play collegiate softball. So I married into softball, uh, <laugh>. But, uh, but yeah, so she started out at, uh, in the Oklahoma State system at Connor State College and transferred to Lipscomb University when I got my first job at Cracker Barrel Corporate in Lebanon, Tennessee. So she played corners. Uh, she was originally a, a shortstop in Lexington, Oklahoma, uh, and a power hitter, uh, an amazing, like put a ball down the middle and it’s over the fence type hitter <laugh>. Uh, so, uh, and, uh, and then they, uh, moved her to corners. Uh, so, but she’s just, uh, she’s a utility utility infielder all the way around. So,

Scott Luton (07:15):

Man, well, uh, shout out to Amber. I, I bet there’s tons of stories there. And also, uh, from Cracker Bell, one of our favorite, uh, businesses here. I’d love to hear some of the stories maybe later on Dr. Patel. And really quick, your, uh, family, uh, your, um, sons and daughters, they’re pretty active in sports as well, right?

Clinton Purtell (07:34):

They are. It’s one of the advantages of being in academia. I get to spend time as dad now, uh, and not, uh, work the, the crazy hours in, in long travel. So, so yeah, I’ve got a, uh, an older daughter, uh, that is a softball player at Oklahoma Baptist University as a nursing student. She wants to achieve the ultimate as a C R N A a nurse aesthetist in that Wow. Uh, in that program. So she’s well on her way. Uh, I’ve got a junior in high school, and her name’s Brooklyn, got a junior in high school, uh, that will be going to Oklahoma City University. She’s committed to play softball there as a catcher. She’s all, they’re both power hitters, just like mom, uh, setting all kinds of records here and there. Uh, love it. She’ll be a pre-law student. Uh, so we’ve got the softball checked off with the two girls, and then, uh, so thankfully dad was able to check the boy box.

Clinton Purtell (08:21):

And, uh, so I played football growing up and had kind of some dreams, you know, around that growing up. But different plans, you know, ended up being the, the way for me. So I get to live through my son who’s 30. He’s, so we live in Texas. He’s, he’s a big breed, right? Uh, he’s, uh, he’s 13. Uh, he’s, uh, he’s six feet tall. He is about 175 pounds right now. And, uh, has, uh, been doing the national combine route, has made it through Army Combine. He’ll be going to rivals this weekend. Uh, he’s made it to the next level of F B U, which is Top Gun. Wow. And, uh, we’ll be going to NextGen the show in Atlanta. Uh, top Gun will be in Naples, Florida, but, uh, he’s just been ranked as a top 100 and he’s just achieved a three star on the national radar. So Dad gets to spend time now, not only just watch the softball, which I appreciate Yeah. And love, right? Don’t get me wrong, but I can get to spend time in Texas football and he’ll be going to Allen High School, which is a Power six A here in Texas. So Dad, dad has lots of fun with that. He plays baseball as well, but, but he’s a football guy,

Scott Luton (09:21):

Dr. Portel, that is awesome. And I, I especially love, all kidding aside, the ability to be a dad. You know, one of my favorite things I do as a father of three is pick up my kids from school and just hear about their day. And it’s just so I can relate. And, uh, I look forward to a lot, uh, hear getting some pictures from that, that, uh, your son and your daughters as they achieved more and more athletically and from a business perspective. Alright, so, uh, really enjoyed hearing a little more about the personal side of each of y’all. Uh, three. Now we’re gonna dive more into the business side, right where you are and where you’re headed, and some of the big, uh, big things you’re gonna be doing. So, I wanna start with Regan. I love asking this question, especially on the, on this now generation series, why supply chain? Why did you pick supply chain as, as a, uh, industry, uh, sector of global business to move into Regan? Thank

Regan Weaver (10:09):

You, Scott. So I grew up, you know, like, you know, like I said earlier, playing baseball and having a bunch of these former baseball coaches, you know, throwing supply chain, uh, terms out. And I’m like, you know, slowly listening, practicing at the same time. And I’m like, what are they talking about? And, you know, I kept tearing up more and more. I have, I have a, a former baseball coach that’s now an executive at FedEx, one that’s now at JC Penney’s. Uh, and then Covid hit, and then you, you hear that it’s a huge field, and I was kind of going into college right when Covid hit, and I was like, well, that’s something I wanna grow up doing. My stepmom also, uh, worked at Walmart for the longest time, and then my brother went to U N T and he is now at B N S F, uh, kind of making his way up on the pole up there. So it got me into, uh, into the industry and I’m loving it so far.

Scott Luton (10:58):

Man, that is a full answer. Sounds like you had lots of role models there. I’m, I’m curious to know, uh, Zach, how about you? What’s your why? Supply chain response.

Zachary Kvale (11:07):

So in this sort of speaks to Regan’s point, but it, it’s everywhere. You know, supply chain is involved in pretty much every form of business out there. And, you know, I think it’s a really useful skill to have, and it’s a really big thing that we need to work on refining, uh, especially as we move forward. So I, I just think there’s a lot of value that can be, uh, created by going into supply chain.

Scott Luton (11:27):

Yes, Zach, and, you know, that’s, that’s been one of the silver linings on Dr. Patel, I’m coming to you next. That’s been one of the silver linings of this tough pandemic era that we all, that challenged us as humanity challenged us as practitioners. You name it. Um, is it elevated, uh, the status of the profession? Folks are curious about it now, and they know a lot more. And of course, we’re living in an era where we got some of the smartest consumers of all time. I would, uh, Dr. Patel, I would, I would, uh, argue and submit to you that I’m hoping that consumers understand they play a very active role, right? And hopefully one of the big things we’re tackling now, but certainly better up ahead, is this tidal wave of returns that all of us as consumers, uh, contribute to. But, uh, Dr. Patel, how about you? You’ve got, we’re gonna, um, uh, dive into, let’s, let’s talk before we get your, your y supply chain. I think I skipped over your professional background, uh, cuz you’ve got, I mean, we could be here three hours talking about all things you’ve done in global supply chain. So tell us more about, um, what you’ve did, uh, done in industry prior to getting into academia. Yeah,

Clinton Purtell (12:30):

You know, I had a, I had a, a really neat ride in corporate America and even spent some time as an entrepreneur, uh, building some businesses myself. Uh, but, uh, you know, I I, I got the opportunity to travel across many different industries. It, it started early on at Cracker Barrel Corporation, uh, where I, I kind of went and at a time, they were at a watershed moment of actually thinking of spinning off retail. Uh, retail was underperforming and they just wanted to be a restaurant company. And so I got to be a part of that team and got to do some really cool things. Like I was, I was the Billy Bass guy, remember the singing fish you push? Oh yeah, guy. I was the guy that helped standardize rocking chairs for Cracker Barrel and other sorts of things, uh, across the, the, the platform that are now some of their bestselling products.

Clinton Purtell (13:11):

So, so I got to do that. I got to move into airlines for a while, worked at American Airlines, bought jets and did M r O for American Airlines, and moved from there to, uh, to Cadbury Schwetz, Dr. Pepper. It used to be Cadbury Schwetz, Dr. Pepper. Now it’s just Dr. Pepper and Dr. Pepper. Keurig, I think is what they’re right now. But, but, uh, um, anyway, got to do consumer goods, moved to medical industry, worked for a French company, uh, ESOR, ESOR Exotica now and then, you know, moved, moved on to pharmaceuticals, moved back to Southwest Airlines, spent a little time in government at, at a tollway authority. But I got to see a lot, you know, um, and, and do a lot of things and be a part of a lot of amazing things. But the one unique thing about my experience was I moved from finance financial analysis into traditional procurement, but found that the ultimate value that an extremely savvy procurement division, an excellent commodity management and strategic sourcing group is able to do, is not just buy things and negotiate commodities and manage cost and bring value, but let’s find acquisition opportunities, especially within the supply chain.

Clinton Purtell (14:16):

The ultimate acquisition, the ultimate purchase is that of another company. And so I became the supply chain m and a guy, and that’s why my, I had that trajectory through my, through my career. And so I got to buy a lot of neat companies, be a part of a number of neat strategic alliances that brought value. And I saw the, the importance of supply chain from that perspective.

Scott Luton (14:37):

Man, Dr. Peri, I love, uh, uh, I could spend the next couple hours, uh, just diving in on that, on, on what all of you done. But I love that the ultimate acquisition is that of another company. I can only imagine, uh, some of the due diligence stories and valuation stories, uh, and, and, and the wherewithal of the supply chain execution of some of those firms you looked at. Scott,

Clinton Purtell (14:58):

Let, lemme just add to that just really quick, if I mind. Yeah, please.

Clinton Purtell (15:01):

The, the difference that the divisions I would, I would build in the approach we took was, was we would go in a company was a very much a, a perspective of what you described. We gotta do the due diligence, we gotta do this, that, and the other. Typically, supply chain and procurement was the last to find out, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So when we led the initiative, we were able to not only identify those synergies, but also integration analysis around how can we reduce cost or increase revenues through our supply chain, right? Um, and when we started looking at the supply chain as the heart, as the nervous system of the acquisition, and not as an afterthought of how do we just cut costs, the goodwill impairments and whatnot that we usually saw on acquisitions, but also the return on assets and, and the immediate, the, the first a hundred days as you hear about, of an acquisition, if it makes or breaks, um, our integrations, uh, were, I think we were batting a thousand,

Scott Luton (15:51):

Dr. Patou, I love what you shared there, especially how it seemed like you were on the, on the really the, uh, the front edge, uh, of, uh, the realization that global businesses had that supply chain, you know, is the business, as I’ve had colleagues put it, you know, there’s so much it brings to the, uh, competitive advantage of a business. And that’s certainly been a realization in recent years. So we’ll have to get the more of your stories from your background, but one l one more quick follow up question. Dr. Patel, you, we’ve heard Regan talk about some of the, you know, baseball coaches and mentors that really turned him on supply chain. We heard from Zach in terms of why supply chain for him, everything’s got a supply chain, and certainly that awareness is really been good for the industry in recent years. But why supply chain? Why for that first role at Cracker Barrel, uh, for you, Dr. Protect?

Clinton Purtell (16:39):

Yeah. You know, I, I think we’re supply chain’s a buzzword right now in media right now. Everybody, you know, talks about it, but I still don’t think people really understand what it is. And it’s a lot of things. Uh, it’s engineering, it’s logistics, it’s accounting, it’s politics, it’s, you know, it’s a cross-disciplinary, cross scientific sort of amalgamation of things that’s solve problems. It gets things from one place to another. It adds value or it significantly disrupts value. Um, why I got into supply chain, um, was number one, because of relationships. Uh, you know, I think business is better in relationships. And when you are strategic in your supply chain endeavors and focus on relationships first, uh, and you realize that you get out of the not invented hear syndrome, that your company can’t do everything, that suppliers exist for a reason that they are subject matter experts, and you can bring value in, if you look in the right places or talk the right language or appreciate the right culture, um, then, you know, the, the sky’s the limit.

Clinton Purtell (17:39):

But at the same time as we found, you know, these days post covid, it can also turn your world upside down if we don’t understand and don’t appreciate it. So, you know, if we don’t manage it and we don’t understand what it’s about, makes our lives miserable and can run our businesses out of, you know, we put us in bankruptcy, uh, or worse, put a country, you know, into an economic decline. If we look at it, then, more than just purchasing and logistics and at the true potential of what it can do, it can revolutionize things, right? Not just of all things, but revolutionize businesses and industries. Um, some people see that as disruption, right? I see it as opportunity. Some people see it as failure. Uh, you know, in one case or another, our business failed because we didn’t keep up or we weren’t aware. I see it as an opportunity to learn how to do it better. And in doing it, embracing supply chain,

Scott Luton (18:31):

I like it could be one of our best answers so far, uh, in recent show memories. So, uh, Dr. Perilla hitting home runs just like you’re just like amber. Just like Amber. Uh, all right, so shifting gears here, uh, go back to you re uh, Regan, I want to talk, you know, as really Dr. Perilla and b really all three of y’all have really implied and spoken to man, global supply chain is so much, so much more than movement, right? So much more than all those departments that all of us have already touched on in the first part of this conversation. So, uh, Regan, what is one topic or trend or issue or challenge, whatever, uh, across global supply chain that’s on your radar more than others right now? Regan, man,

Regan Weaver (19:12):

Scott, you know, that’s a difficult question, but a great question too, because every single day there’s something moving in supply chain. But in the past couple days, I’ve really, really been paying attention to production, coming back to the us, uh, you know, watching companies and the government figuring out how to do this. They’re calling it Nearshoring right now. Uh, and as you can tell when Covid hit, you know, we lacked in product, didn’t have toilet paper. Uh, and I’m kind of really looking at the progress on that and seeing how that’s gonna come and what is to come on that, because I think that’s a huge topic, especially with maybe the currencies, uh, changing as well in China. Uh, so it’s something that I’m really, really interested in and I can’t wait to see what the outcome is.

Scott Luton (19:54):

Love that. Who’d have thought that toilet paper would be the gift that keeps on giving the great American toilet paper shortage? Just is amazing. Um, good stuff there. Regan, I wanna switch over to you, Zach. Uh, same question. If you, if you survey the global landscape of global supply chain right now, what’s one thing that you’re really tracking more than others right now? I

Zachary Kvale (20:11):

Mean, uh, I would say the big buzzword when it comes to the supply chain to supply chain resiliency. But specifically I’ve been looking at the defense industry portion of that. Uh, we’ve been looking into a bunch of defense contractors and seeing how their supply chains are rebounding and really noticing that they’re taking a little bit longer just due to the nature of their work to bounce back. There’s also, uh, Regan hit it a little bit. China sanctioning some of the US defense companies and how that’s gonna impact sort of our operations as well as, you know, all the foreign conflicts going on. Just defense in supply chain has a lot going on right

Scott Luton (20:44):

Now. It’s a good point. There’s lots of sanctioning and fees and tariffs going back and forth on, across a variety of different, uh, supply chains and trade. Um, and, you know, uh, Dr. Patel, I’m coming to you next, but unfortunately, of course, in the last year, we’ve seen, um, firsthand the Russian invasion of Ukraine and, and, and what that means far beyond violence and loss. But, uh, to a, to a lesser important extent, uh, what that means for global supply chains. All right, so Dr. Patel, a a lot of good stuff there from Regan and Zach. And again, there’s so much to track with with this question, but I love the, the simple and the, and the simple focus of it. That’s one of the reasons I love posing it, uh, to our guests here. So for you, what’s one thing you, you may be, not that you’re only tracking it, but what’s one thing that may be you’re tracking more than others right now in global supply chain?

Clinton Purtell (21:33):

Yeah, and I think I’m, I may be one of the, the few right now that are, that are looking at this at least per the, the editors and the, in the revised and resubmits that we see on the academic side. And that is advanced our mobility. Scott, so you’re a former Air Force guy, you know, uh, we, we, the United States leads and military drone technology, un un, you know, hands down, uh, we, and, and we have traditionally in the United States, been the leader in aerospace. I mean, we we’re the Wright brothers watched, right? And ever since the great space race we’ve led in commercial aerospace. We have the safest, most complex airspace in the world. But Scott, where are the drones? Where is this new, uh, mode of transportation that everybody was so excited about for so long? And sometimes in the United States, we say it’s not happening here, therefore it’s not happening.

Clinton Purtell (22:15):

But heavy lift drones in the number of different industries, medical and heavy transport, are actually very active outside of our airspace. One of the things I think will drive this is the, uh, deterioration of roads and the congestion of roads, part of the supply chain problem. You know, if we think about getting a, an LTL or a pallet load from a warehouse to a convenience store or somewhere where you have to, you don’t have a straight interstate highway, but you have winding roads and it takes a few hours and pretty expensive gas and a driver. But I could have a heavy lift drone, very capable drones, lots of technologies out there capable of going 300 miles, carrying 3000 pounds fully autonomously and low altitude non congested airspace, and turn that drone five times where I might turn that truck twice a day on a short range route. You know, that’s pretty disruptive. Um, and so that’s what I’m tracking is the advancements of drones and advanced air mobility, what we’re calling air taxis. Um, and the advantages that that will have, uh, once we open the US airspace and how it may disrupt a number of traditional, uh, either compliment or disrupt traditional forms of, of logistics and supply chain.

Scott Luton (23:23):

Dr. Peru, I love that answer. We just interviewed, uh, a Walmart, uh, senior executive. They’ve made big gains, uh, as, as other retailers have really struggled to make more gains in the testing and the clearances and whatnot. So, great, great point. We got some interesting times ahead for sure. Um, alright. But it really has to be said across global supply chain drones. Sure. Automation, sure. Uh, the analytics Sure. The talent factor opportunities for folks, right. Um, I wanna switch gears and I want to, I want to kind of move into the University of North Texas, as we mentioned on the front end, loss of accolades, lots of recognition, uh, on inside the top 10 for Gartner in 2022 for, uh, supply chain programs across North America. So, Regan, I’m gonna circle back to you here, uh, as customers, I’ll put it, of, uh, U N t, uh, Regan, what, um, what makes the program so, so special there for logistics and supply chain management?

Regan Weaver (24:18):

Well, you can just see one of our doctors right here, Dr. Patel, uh, given everything he has, uh, you know, that’s, that’s one thing though. Uh, all the doctors, you know, are very friendly. They’re out to help you. A lot of students, I feel like don’t understand that and don’t see that. And then another thing is I feel like we are almost our, like our own distribution center or something. You know, we are in the middle of a supply chain area, uh, you know, like right in the middle of it. Uh, and so, you know, there’s a lot of opportunities that comes with that. There’s a bunch of businesses right here in the dallas Fort Worth metroplex, kind of being president of the logistics and supply chain organization and makes it very easy, uh, to, to get a tour going. You know, let’s say at B N S F Row, it, you know, their headquarters are right here in Dallas, uh, Southwest Airlines, American Airlines, we’ve gone on all these tours, and that was in just one semester. So, you know, that’s, that’s something to be said, and that’s something that makes U N T, you know, get up there on the top charts for sure.

Scott Luton (25:18):

I, I love some of the things you point to there. Two of them in particular, of course, the infrastructure, uh, you know, every city, every university, every port, every supply chain, um, Metro Center takes advantage of local infrastructure, right? And that’s clearly one of the advantages there. And then secondly, one of the things you touched on is all the tours that y’all have been conducting. That is the mo One of the most valuable things that current supply chain practitioners, students that are looking at breaking industry can do is get out there and view operations and connect and see problems, challenges, solutions, talk to people. Uh, what a great learning experience. Zach, same question to you. So what makes unts University of North Texas’ supply chain logistics and supply chain management program so special?

Zachary Kvale (26:01):

I mean, for me, it’s a lot of the people, I, I, I know we’ve been mentioning the talent a lot, but really a lot of those professors have sort of gone out of their way to make sure that all the questions I have, all the opportunities I could possibly get have been presented to me. And it’s been, uh, really heartwarming and just a very good experience to have with all these professors for me,

Scott Luton (26:22):

Man. Okay, so, Dr. Perilla, Zach’s answer is, well, Zach and Regans, both their responses have gotta put a smile on your face, uh, comment on what they’ve shared, and then if you can, you know, uh, I know you’re not looking to pitch U n T, but you’re, I’m, uh, clearly you’re accomplishing a ton there and cranking out the talent pipeline in the industry that needs it. So what’d you hear there from both of our guests here, Regan and Zach, and what do you think makes the program so special?

Clinton Purtell (26:49):

Yeah, you, you bet, Scott. So, you know, I worked for a little over a decade in the Dallas Fort Worth area and got to work some other places across the world and, and got to work with school universities. When I was, when I was on the other side of the fence, when I was choosing which university to come to after I got my PhD, there was something that kind of stuck out. You know, I, I had offers from some fantastic supply chain programs and, and some, you know, tier one, uh, you know, very prestigious institutions. And, um, there was something different about U N T. And when I tried to put my finger on it, and of course, as a PhD, I had to look at the, at the, some of the details behind this, some things started to stick out. So, so first, U n T has some big problems, Scott, and those problems are growth problems.

Clinton Purtell (27:30):

Our, our growth and our college of business is double digit semester over semester almost. Um, and, and so, so we have a lot of people wanting to come here, which is, it’s usually that good sign, right? Uh, that was number one. Number two, um, you know, U n t primary campus is in Denton. Uh, it has some other institutions, some other campuses in Fort Worth, one in downtown Dallas. Uh, but they formed a relationship with Frisco, Texas, one of the fastest growing cities, I think, now in the world. Uh, okay. Which becoming sports Mecca, but we see just all kinds of industries moving in. And so Frisco did a long-term partnership arrangement with Frisco between U N T Den and Frisco to, to establish U N T Frisco. Um, and so we built a branch campus. There was a hundred acre agreement, uh, you know, for that.

Clinton Purtell (28:15):

Uh, we have UNT Frisco now, and it has just exploded <laugh> right next door to the PGA headquarters, the new PGA headquarters up from the Star. Um, and so, so we see some really, uh, neat things there. But here’s what really stuck out to me. I got the opportunity to teach it at a number of great supply chain programs as I was an adjunct and other sorts of things, and I couldn’t quite put my finger on the difference. And finally, I realized it was this guy that, um, a third or so of the students at U N T are first generation, um, we’re, we’re a majority minority. Um, so, so, well more than 50% identify as some category of a, of a minority. Uh, so incredible diversification. Um, and I believe I I’ve heard numbers between 20 to 25% of our students are, are what we would categorize as neurodiverse.

Clinton Purtell (29:01):

Um, and we’re an R one growing institution and one of the fastest growing, you know, economic areas of the country. And so, as I started working with, you know, these students versus other institutions that were just phenomenally ranked, you know, um, I certainly realize that the grit factor of a u t student is a little different. So, so I’ll ask, I love having one on ones with students, and, and I do it at all my, all institutions. I ask a student, you know, what do you wanna do when you grow up? I usually get the answer, I wanna make a lot of money, have a great job, <laugh>. Often when I talk to a U N T student on average, I get a different answer. I’ll still get that answer, Scott, but I get another answer because a lot of our students are non-traditional first generation minorities.

Clinton Purtell (29:37):

And that is, I wanna get, I want to, I wanna get mom outta the hood, you know, I, I, I wanna make sure my brother and sister can eat. So the, so the mission and the grit of a d of a U N T student is different than that of a traditional student I would see at a, at another university. Not to say those students aren’t at other universities, but, but that creates a different culture at U N T. And because of that perseverance factor and that desire to achieve and win, um, you know, and succeed in some cases because of survival, um, that was a big, big draw for me,

Scott Luton (30:09):

Dr. Patel. I appreciate you sharing that. Uh, and the power, um, the power there within when it comes to, uh, the power of diversity. Uh, Regan, I think you, in, in talking pre-show, I think you had a, a, a couple of passionate points around that, right? Yes,

Regan Weaver (30:22):

Absolutely. Dr. Patel, I think you had a great point, uh, about being diverse. You know, I grew up at my high school, wasn’t a very diverse background, uh, over there. And then I kind of came to college and I saw how diverse it is. And I think that is a huge thing about U N T because it got me to see kind of the real world, and it got to see that not everyone has to have the same background to get the position, you know? And so, as being president, the organization for logistics and supply chain management, you know, when we, when the officers all get together and we’re brainstorming, everybody is thinking something differently, and, you know, that’s something big that, you know, most companies are looking, uh, to have in their, in their future employees.

Scott Luton (31:05):

Yeah, that echo chamber, right? Welcome in a wide plethora of views and, and global views and how we approach, not just problems, which is important in and of itself, but also opportunities, right? Um, so good stuff there. Uh, Regan, all right, I wanna switch gears and talk about internships because both of our guests are involved in some impactful internships. And then I’m gonna come to Dr. Patillo and we’re gonna talk about why that’s important. So, uh, Zach, let’s circle back to you first. So Zack, tell us about, uh, where you’re currently interning.

Zachary Kvale (31:37):

So currently I’m interning at Lone Star Analysis, which is a data analytics company. And, uh, we’ve been doing a lot of tracking sort of how government spending works and, you know, looking at their buying behavior and also the logistical component of that, how, you know, logistics and supply chain may be affecting what the government’s doing, what the government’s expectations are.

Scott Luton (31:57):

So, man, uh, and I, what I understand come from Dr. Perilla is, uh, we could put up, put together a whole series on some of the work you’re doing there as part of that internship, uh, Zack and I bet it’s right up your alley, cuz you loved analyzed loads and loads of information. Is that right?

Zachary Kvale (32:13):

Absolutely. I love data. <laugh>

Scott Luton (32:17):

<laugh>. I love data. We need a t-shirt. Has a t-shirt, is it? Um, all right. So Regan, let’s talk about your internship and, and what you’re up to. Absolutely.

Regan Weaver (32:26):

So I actually, you know, I keep referencing, uh, being the president, uh, but you know, this is a really big thing for students. We’re trying to grow the organization and when being president, we have a thing called Handshake at U n t. Some, uh, colleges have it, and it is, I mean, straight employment for, for, uh, college students. And so I kinda look through that every day and pass it on to other students. And we have got employment up very high in our organization. I would say almost every person in the organization is getting an internship. And so, with that being said, I have had multiple, uh, grateful opportunities that I’m proud to say. And so I had an interview actually yesterday with Calloway Golf. In fact, Calloway Golf just bought top golf. Uh, for those of you that just kind of go and have a good time, don’t take golf seriously.

Regan Weaver (33:16):

<laugh>, uh, top golf is a good spot to be and have a good time. And so Callaway just bought them, and I think I’ll be working there this summer as well as I have a little research project that I’m working on with a few of the professors at U N T. And we are doing research, data analysis for forklift drivers. And so we put a little cap on their, on the forklift driver’s head, and we put some gel that connects to, um, you know, their sculpt, and it actually reads kinda where they’re thinking and the waves of what they’re thinking. And what we’re trying to do with this is trying to get it more efficient for forklift drivers. See how long, you know, how efficient they really are going in these hot summer Texas, when it’s 105 degrees, you know, are they really gonna be efficient for two hours straight? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, I don’t know. So that’s kind of what we’re doing, and, uh, I’m really loving it and it’s really a good opportunity as being a sophomore here at U N T.

Scott Luton (34:08):

All right. So, Dr. Patel and con you next, you know, what I heard there from Regan is, uh, how important it is and some of the work they’re doing to improve the quality of life and, and their roles and enable them to be more successful folks on the frontline. And we, as we all know, those are the folks that make global supply chain happen. So I loved hearing that, Regan, we gotta take care, uh, of those folks, uh, in our facilities no matter where they are, hot Texas during the summer or halfway around the world. Dr. Patillo talk about, um, two things here. Uh, the internships that both Regan and Zach are up to. Um, and then in general, the power of internships. Why more schools and, and employers should invest in internships maybe?

Clinton Purtell (34:50):

Yeah, absolutely. So, we’ll, we’ll hit to, you know, why internships first, uh, of the first two questions. So it’s a very competitive place out there, especially for an undergrad that’s trying to go into the world. And, you know, dealing with folks that, you know, 10,000 other undergrads trying to get that same job, or folks who are changing industries or, or whatever the economic situation is, or that industry situation is. Um, somehow the, the student has to stand out and, you know, they all come out with the same degree. They, if they’re going to an A, a C S B school, they, they’ve had the same curriculum, different professors, maybe some different war stories, but what separates them? Um, and so the ability to talk about not only what I did, but how I did it and gain that perspective is absolutely critical, you know, for, for the, for the student.

Clinton Purtell (35:36):

But here’s an even better thing about the internship. It’s, it’s a, it’s a tight labor pool out there. Uh, you know, when we see companies wanting to move into Frisco, when we’re working with the Frisco Economic Development Corp, or McKinney, you Economic Development corp, or just local employers, you know, the, the one thing they wanna talk about is labor pool, right? Why should I relocate to your area? Tell me about how, where am I gonna find employees, companies? How do I get access to your talent? If you’re waiting until graduation, you’re waited way too late, uh, the top talent is gone, the top talent finds the opportunities. That’s not to say the talent that’s left is not good. Uh, it’s just your, your options or much less, you know, when I was in industry, I preferred the try before you buy approach. Um, you know, an internship gives you a chance to, to try talent before you buy.

Clinton Purtell (36:20):

And if you do it in partnership with the university, you get to screen who you’re bringing in as an intern. And I would much rather deal with a 10 99, you know, or, or an hourly worker that’s not a W two employee. If there’s not a good fit or we have a cultural problem or something like that within the organization, it’s, you could address it much quicker, you know, when the person’s not at w2. So, so that becomes, you know, one issue. The second is so many companies do a, uh, a hot potato internship program, right? We need an intern this summer, but we’ll talk to you again in a few years. Um, and if you don’t start that pipeline, you’re just an interest to that student when you have a relationship and a funnel, you become talked about by many students. And so there are other benefits there, but I would say this, I would say, Scott, the internship idea is old.

Clinton Purtell (37:06):

It’s, it’s out phase. It’s kinda like some social media platforms that are kind of going out and others are coming in <laugh>. Um, the, the old, the old idea of let’s just put an internship out there and hopefully people apply and we’ll go to career fairs and, and start that, that, that’s, that’s gone. I, I reference, you know, using strategic sourcing as a form of acquisitions and thinking outside the box. You know, Regan talked about something that I’m very involved in as well, and that is using our students, undergraduate students, not PhD students, undergraduate students for real research. And I’m not talking about a long-term capstone project. I’m talking about finding actively involved PhDs, professors who have a pool of high potential candidates that wanna solve problems. And let me tell you something, a motivated undergraduate student, especially somebody like from u n T with the grit factor I talked about, can solve amazing problems very quickly without having the bias that somebody who’s worked in industry for quite some time might have. Um, and so you get very unique perspectives and in some cases from somebody who represents your future consumer, right? Right. So you’re getting all kinds of value by doing that. So going beyond the internship to, uh, to finding ways of partnering with the university, uh, for not just capstone projects, not just guest speakers, but problem solving for your organization, pure indoctrination, what I used to call embed the student and the university within your organization. And they will help you solve your talent problem as well as your other problems.

Scott Luton (38:41):

Yeah, I, I think so much to your, one of your points is how you structure it and, and number two, how you, uh, empower these incredible minds that are so capable. Um, you know, the, the word intern, uh, we would replace that word intern, I can’t remember the word we would use here at supply chain now, because intern in and of itself can, can imply trainee or, or something that, that really diminishes the value and the capability of these participants with an internship program. Uh, man put ’em to work cuz they are, they are capable and ready to go and ready to contribute.

Regan Weaver (39:15):

And I also have kinda one more, something small to add to that, but correct me if I’m wrong, Dr. Patel, I think if you’re majoring in logistics and supply chain at U N T, you have to have at least one internship to graduate. Or is it, is it two or one?

Clinton Purtell (39:28):

It is a mandatory requirement to graduate. That is correct,

Regan Weaver (39:31):

Yes. And, but that’s something cool, you know, a lot of colleges don’t have that. And, you know, that shows that you should be able to get an internship while you’re in college right here at U N T, especially

Scott Luton (39:40):

If you wanna graduate <laugh>. That’s, that’s kind of why it’s important too. Uh, hey, good stuff there. Uh, Dr. Patel and Regan and Zach. Um, alright, so I wanna move ahead, right? So hopefully y’all brought, uh, your crystal ball to the conversation here today. A lot of passion on this panel. Um, alright, so what do you want to do? Zach can come to you first. Uh, what do you want to do in industry and why? What’s that change you wanna, you wanna affect? I mean,

Zachary Kvale (40:07):

My long-term goal is to start my own business and really in regards to logistics, being able to go out there and sort of put my influence out there. I’ve, uh, had a lot of fun when it comes to Lean Six Sigma continuous improvement. And so, you know, we have a supply chain that’s working on continuous improvement sometimes to its own detriment, but, you know, making sure to make smart decisions to improve it to impro, improve the livelihoods of everyone that uses

Scott Luton (40:33):

It. That does not surprise me, Zach. Uh, especially given that you love data, as you’ve said. Uh, of course Lean Six Sigma offers plenty of data and of course, the power of data as you’re, you’re finding solutions to problems old and new. Uh, and I love as, as a fellow, uh, or as an entrepreneur and a founder, I look forward to tracking you as you, uh, you start your business down the road a little bit. Um, all right, so Regan, how about you? What do you wanna do in the industry and why? That

Regan Weaver (41:01):

Is a great question because every single day, I don’t know what it is about me, but I feel like I’m a businessman and I’ll wake up and have some crazy idea. Uh, last year I started up a security company, went good with it. I’ve got 30 or 300 people on a bus to Lollapalooza, sold the company for about six grand. Uh, you know, just to start up cuz of liability with the Travis Scott concert. If, uh, the people on here are familiar with that. So, you know, every single day I wake up with something that I want to, to do. But I do have some long-term goals. Uh, you know, I wanna finish my degree here at U N t, uh, really strong, hopefully stand with a 4.0. And then when I graduate, I want to hopefully work with Callaway Golf for a while with, uh, the PGA coming here.

Regan Weaver (41:48):

Uh, so I’ve really been looking forward to that. And then maybe, uh, I just actually got my authority license to move freight, uh, nationally. And so I am thinking about starting up my own break, uh, brokerage freight company. I have a few mentors with the Dallas Fort Worth Transportation Club, uh, right over here. Okay. Shout out to Norma Payne. I’m gonna send her the link to this. Uh, so I, and I hope she listens, uh, but she owns her own, uh, brokerage freight company and she’s kind of being a mentor with me as well. Uh, so that’s kind of my plan. And I have a lot of more plans. Like I was stating.

Scott Luton (42:21):

So Dr. Perel, I’ll tell you, um, I think if we hooked up the wires and cables to the DFW area to Regan, we would have sustainable energy for months on end, right? Uh, hey, different strokes, different folks. I love it. I love, I love the energy you bring to the table and, and both of y’all, Zach and Regan, the dreams and the passion and what you wanna do, right? And, and, and how you both wanna create stuff. We need more creators, not just in global supply chain, but in business. Dr. Patel speak to both of their, um, uh, may maybe dreams is the wrong word, but their goals and plans. And then I’m gonna circle back to, uh, follow up question to both of our students here. Dr. Patel, what’d you hear? It’s

Clinton Purtell (43:03):

The message that I and my colleagues push at at U N T. And that is when you think you’re thinking big, think bigger. Uh, because if you’re going to, if you’re going to make it, uh, in this competitive world and this competitive, uh, you know, environment, you’ve gotta be different. Um, not just different, uh, you know, in terms of how you look, uh, but how you think. Um, and, and that’s, that’s I think a, a part of what we’re building here. That’s what you hear from both of these, you know, young men is a lot of inspiration, a lot of energy, which is what we look for in interviews, you know, and stand out and future leadership potential, you know, and, and, and Zach, we look for folks who, um, you know, are deep thinkers, you know, and, and that, um, you know, can, can take lots of bits of information that we may not see anything in and, and can find something from it.

Clinton Purtell (43:52):

But here’s the difference with Zack. Zack can communicate it back to us, right? He doesn’t just show us spreadsheets. He explains what he sees and what we should see. Um, and, and that’s different. Um, and as an entrepreneur, you know, type of, uh, mindset with both of them. You know, when we think entrepreneurship, we often think about, you know, the individual trying to start a small company. Corporate, corporate entrepreneurship is, is much bigger than individual entrepreneurship. And so individuals like this who go into supply chain or r and d or strategy or ops and and are entrepreneurial minded, um, you know, can make a big impact in their companies.

Scott Luton (44:25):

Agree. And I like your analysis there between Regan and Zach and what they bring to the table, both in a common sense and a very unique sense. And really that goes back to, you know, the power of different walks in life, different skills, different uh, dispositions. We need it all on a team. You know, one of my favorite interviews, uh, it’s been two years ago now, I think it was the heart of the pandemic and uh, uh, a classically trained artist, uh, ended up finding a career in supply chain and, and kicking, kicking butt. And we need, we need all perspectives, for sure. Alright, lot of good stuff in these goals, objectives. Uh, Dr. Patillo, I appreciate your, uh, your analysis there. And really it takes, you know, different, different strokes for different folks. It takes us all right to, to move industry ahead. And I love the, the, the contrasting styles we’re even seeing here. Uh, cause it really takes us all, it takes a village. I hate to use that, but it, it’s got so much application in where we are. So let’s ask this. This is one of our questions we get a lot of feedback around. So, uh, and Reagan, I’m gonna stick with you here for a second. When it comes to jobs, you already talked about maybe some of your dream jobs here and some of your early responses, but what’s one thing that you and your fellow students are looking for in your potential employer?

Regan Weaver (45:41):

It’s funny that you asked that. The last meeting that our organization had is What do y’all, you know, I asked ’em, I said, so what are y’all really looking for? And you know, I feel like everyone, you know, talks about, you know, behind each other’s ears about, well, I don’t like this company cuz they don’t have good food or something. You know, I don’t bring donuts in in the morning. Uh, but, you know, I think one thing that I really look into is how do they treat, you know, the people that are working for, I mean, is it a family? Is it a team? I mean, that’s, that’s one thing. I wanna be sure that it’s a safe environment that I’m treated, you know, respectfully by everyone. I don’t want some boss coming in, uh, and yelling at me in the mornings when, you know, I was two minutes late or something.

Regan Weaver (46:25):

Uh, and I’ve never been late, ever, you know, <laugh>. But, you know, just things like that. And then obviously right now, you know, I’m not looking for a lot of money, right? As a young college student, I’m looking for a learning experience. I’m looking to dive into the field and work as hard as I can and give whatever I can to a company that will respect me and gimme a safe environment and see who I am to work for them in the long run. And so, you know, that, that’s really the, the main point in that. And I think I, I can speak for a lot of other, uh, fellow peers and students of mine, uh, with that same, uh, men mentality,

Scott Luton (47:01):

Regan, I love that. So, so you wanna earn, but more importantly you wanna learn. I love that. Good stuff there. Um, alright, so Zach, what about you? What are you looking for in your potential employer?

Zachary Kvale (47:12):

I’ve, I’ve got some similarities to Regan over there when it comes to, uh, company culture. That’s really a big thing that I’m looking for. And that’s something I appreciate with my current company. You know, getting the opportunity to sort of go out on my own and, uh, think of these improvements that we’re able to make, you know, analyze it on my own. That’s something that I really like in a company, and that’s something, you know, culture in general. Just making sure that I feel not only valued and appreciated, but that I have the ability to sort of speak up and make legitimate, uh, you know, changes in alterations that can bring a lot of value to the company.

Scott Luton (47:51):

I love that, uh, recognition and empowerment and being able to, to share, share your perspective in, in a, in an environment that values that. Um, I, I think I, I’ve heard a lot of of responses along those lines, so, good stuff. Regan and Zach. Um, Dr. Patel, I want to shift gears here as we start to kind of come down the home stretch here. You know, again, I appreciate your facilitation, giving these opportunities for our global audience to, to learn from these voices, right, uh, of the now generations. It’s really important we use that distinction. Dr. Patel, why do you love doing what you do and any moments I’ll call it from the classroom that you’d like to share with us here?

Clinton Purtell (48:30):

Yeah, you bet. So love doing what I do. Uh, number one, again, cause as we mentioned earlier, I get to be dad now. Um, but it allows me now to be a consultant. Um, you know, I can work individually with companies, I can work on them with academic teams and funded research with grants and other sorts of, uh, opportunities there. Um, but, but more importantly, Scott, for me, you know, I, I spent 25 years, 25 years in industry doing those things that earned me the, the titles and the bonuses and, and all those things like a typical, you know, industry person would do. Um, but what I enjoyed most was really mentoring and helping others, you know, set their own goals, helping companies set their goals, and, and then achieving those things. Um, and, and so that’s what I, that’s what really drew me back to, to academia was number one, I love learning, but number two, I love mentoring students.

Clinton Purtell (49:18):

And, and not only sharing my, my experiences and thoughts and, and, and processes with them, uh, but, but working with them outside the classroom, um, you know, actually being the, the person who enjoys meeting with them in one-on-ones actually incent my students to meet with me. I give ’em extra credit if they’ll meet with me outside of class. Okay. Um, and, and you know what’s interesting, Scott, is the number one question I get asked is, um, you know, what, what advice would you give me about career? Hey, I want to interview at this place. What are your thoughts? You know, it’s, it’s questions that they want to mentor for. Um, and I would say that’s probably, you know, of the hundreds of students I meet with every semester, that’s, that’s probably 75% of ’em that want the mentoring aspect. Um, but this is what I tell students, what’s my why now, uh, you know, of, of academia is, um, uh, you know, the opportunity to, to be that person that 20 years from now when somebody asks them, Hey, who had the biggest impact on you? Who do you remember most? What, what teacher, you know, had the biggest impact? That it’s my name. You know, that, that they mentioned, or at least one of the names they mentioned. I know if I did that, I, you know, I leave a legacy. Um, you know, and then those, those ideas that I had were impactful enough that they’ve retained them and hopefully they’ll pass them on. And our time here is short, right? So, so, uh, I think that’s the ultimate gift that, that I can give through

Scott Luton (50:32):

Academia, man, Dr. Perilla. Wonderful. I love that. And I wish I had, I had some professors like you giving extra credit. I needed all the help I could get in school, uh, and meeting with professors and gaining their insights with, I would’ve done that, uh, maybe weekly. It would’ve saved some of my grades. Reagan, uh, you were gonna add something, Dr.

Regan Weaver (50:52):

Patel, you know, it’s great that you said that. That’s like music to my ears and my heart, because as being a student, um, and I would say the majority of the faculty at U N T would say that same thing. And that just kind of shows though, right there that, you know, u n T is almost, I mean, it’s, it’s like a big family, you know, you can go talk to anybody. I know that sounds kind of cringey, but I mean, that, that’s what it’s, you know, I feel like I can go talk to anybody up there and they’ll be like, they’ll lead me in the right direction, for sure.

Scott Luton (51:19):

Oh, uh, all right. So when I hear the word cringey and I’m, I’m learning a ton from my three kids, and I, my son, I said something the other day and my, my, my son goes, dad, that’s super cringe. And I was just dying laughing. My son’s going into, uh, fifth grade next year. Um, okay, so, uh, Regan, Zach, Dr. Patel, what a great and wide ranging conversation. I really, uh, I admire all that y’all are doing now, uh, and, and contributing now. And of course, man, when y’all wrap up, of course, Zach is graduating here in May. Uh, Regan, you’ll be wrapping up in a couple of years, and then you’re making your mark driving change. It’s gotta take place out across industry. I tell you, we got, we need, we all need shades on cause our future is really, really bright. So, so let’s make sure folks know how to connect with all three of y’all. Uh, and I’m gonna start with our students here soon to be graduate. Uh, Zach Quali, how can folks connect with you, Zach, on

Zachary Kvale (52:16):

LinkedIn, just searching up Zachary Quali. I, I’m not completely sure, but I think I might be the only one with that name on there. So it should be easy to find me

Scott Luton (52:25):

<laugh>. We’ll make it easy. We’ll add that LinkedIn, uh, link to the episode page. The folks will wanna click away from connecting with you. Uh, appreciate your time, Regan Weaver. Uh, how about you? How can folks connect with you?

Regan Weaver (52:37):

Absolutely, guys. Uh, anyone listening, you know, I wanna, I’m a helpful, I feel like I’m helpful to anybody I care about. And if y’all, you know, ever need any help with life or you wanna reach out, just be friends. I, I’m always open to network with anybody, uh, and I’m always gonna respect whoever reaches out to me. You can reach out to me, uh, on Instagram or LinkedIn, Snapchat, you can even text me. My Instagram is, uh, Reagan underscore Weaver three, and then my LinkedIn, you can probably type in U n t Logistics and Supply Chain. I’ll probably pop up, or you can type in Reagan Weaver on LinkedIn. Uh, but I’d love to connect with, uh, whoever, whatever questions you may have for me. And, uh, I’m sure we can, you know, say buddies, uh, in the future.

Scott Luton (53:18):

Wonderful. Regan, I appreciate you and Zach Regan Weaver. Uh, okay, Dr. Patel, you have brought quite a duo to today’s episode of the Now Generation here at Supply Chain. Now, how can folks connect with you and all the good things you’re up to?

Clinton Purtell (53:32):

LinkedIn is always a great, uh, a great way, and so I believe you’ll be sharing that. Uh, Twitter I’m becoming more active on is as my children, uh, push me towards that and Instagram. So Twitter, I’m at C Pertel one. Uh, so, uh, so that’s a, that’s a good way, uh, as well as Instagram. But, uh, but LinkedIn, uh, by all means for professional networking, uh, that’s the way.

Scott Luton (53:52):

Wonderful. And again, appreciate what you’re doing. Yeah, Regan, and

Regan Weaver (53:56):

I’d also like to say, uh, thank you to Scott and the u n t faculty, uh, for having us out here. You know, I, it’s a really great opportunity. Like we were stating about how we love U n T and our faculty. You know, I wouldn’t be able to have this opportunity if it wasn’t for them. I’m, I’m a pl I’m, uh, happy to have or to be on the show, Scott, and, you know, I look forward to saying connect with you as well.

Scott Luton (54:17):

I have a hunch, I have a hunch we’re gonna, we have not heard to last from Zach and Regan. That’s just a hunch. So who knows about to have a catch up episode down, uh, maybe me later in a year or so. But big thanks. What a great conversation. Re uh, Regan Weaver, Zach Quali, and Dr. Clinton Perel, thanks to each of y’all for, uh, a great, uh, time well spent here today. And to our listeners, hopefully y’all enjoyed this conversation as much as I have. Make sure you connect, uh, make sure you get out and benchmark what they’re doing there. Clearly at the University of North Texas, man, doing some special things. But whatever you do, take some of the ideas you heard from our, our panel here. Put it in action deeds, not words. That’s how we’re gonna move the whole industry forward. And with that said, on behalf of our entire team here at Supply Chain now, Scott Luton challenging you to do good, to give forward and to be the change that’s needed. And we’ll see you next time, right back here at Supply Chain now. Thanks everybody.

Intro/Outro (55:12):

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.

Featured Guests

Dr. Clinton Purtell, an assistant professor of logistics and operations management, serves as Associate Director of the Jim McNatt Institute for Logistics Research at the University of North Texas and is a member of UNT’s Center for Integrated Intelligent Mobility Systems (CIIMS). His career and industry experience span more than two decades in executive leadership roles in a number of Fortune 500 and Euro 50 firms leading global supply chains, strategic sourcing, and corporate development in industries such as airline transportation, consumer goods, medical devices, restaurants and manufacturing. Dr. Purtell spent more than a decade in commercial aerospace leading and managing fleet transactions, strategic sourcing, airlines MRO, and corporate development at American Airlines and Southwest Airlines. He also served as the strategic procurement liaison to the One World Alliance while at American Airlines. Dr. Purtell’s research centers around the intersection of entrepreneurship and supply chain innovation. He actively studies advancements in aerospace, such as advanced air mobility, dual use aerospace technologies, and disruptive supply chain technologies. Dr. Purtell is a co-PI on a number of large research grants from NASA and the National Science Foundation. Dr Purtell serves on the investment advisory board of the Alumni Ventures Group (AVG Funds), the venture capital organization that supports Ivy League university ventures. He serves on a number of small and mid-size company boards and consults entrepreneurs of strategy, fundraising, and supply chain operations. He also serves on a number of boards, including serving as a trustee at Oklahoma City University. He received his PhD in Entrepreneurship from Oklahoma State University, an MBA from Belmont University, and a Bachelor of Finance from Oklahoma City University. He also received the honorable designation of Executive Scholar from Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Business in Management Science. Dr. Purtell was a Graduate Fellow of the American Indian Graduate Center and a Graduate Scholar of the National Center for National Center for American Indian Economic Development. He is an enrolled member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, and is a member of The PhD Project. Connect with Clinton on LinkedIn.

Zachary Kvale is currently a senior at the University of North Texas graduating in May with a BBA in Finance and a BBA in Business Integrated Studies with a focus in Enterprise Management and Logistics & Supply Chain Management. Connect with Zachary on LinkedIn.

Regan Weaver is a Junior at the University of North Texas, where his major is Logistics and Supply Chain Management with a minor in Marketing. Expansion of his knowledge of Logistics and Supply Chain Management, with its numerous global tentacles, is his objective. He serves as the President for the Logistics and Supply Chain Management Student Organization. He completed an assignment as a UNT Student Research Assistant and is currently a UNT Research Data Analyst. As the President of LSCM, he was challenged to rebuild the membership base. Previous on-campus organizations, due to Covid-19 Pandemic shutdowns, lost officers and membership was depleted. Through working with other officers and leaders, he used his networking and communication skills to dramatically rebuild membership from under 40 to 130 in five months, advancing relationships with professional associations, and expanding partnership activities with DFW business owners and professionals. Partnering has resulted in increased student attendance at Organization speaker events, more on-site tours of Logistics and Supply Chain companies, and an increase in intern and employment opportunities made available to UNT students. Regan was a team member for the Operation Stimulus National Case Competition at Colorado State University in March 2023. They placed second in this National competition. Connect with Regan on LinkedIn.

Hosts

Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

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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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Mary Kate Love

VP, Marketing

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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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Constantine Limberakis

Host

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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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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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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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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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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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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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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Greg White

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

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

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

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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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