In February of 2022, Russia invaded Ukraine. A citizen resistance that was only expected to last days has held for over a year… and the fight goes on. Vector Global Logistics launched an effort almost immediately to channel the collective desire to help. ‘Leveraging Logistics and Supply Chain for Ukraine’ brings together like-minded individuals around the world that are determined to use their resources and expertise to make a difference for the people of Ukraine.
In this special episode of Logistics with Purpose, Kristi Porter and Maureen Woolshlager are joined by a panel of motivated, caring individual that represent purpose-driven organizations to discuss the ongoing effort to support the people of Ukraine:
Christopher Hussaini, Senior Sales Manager, Hapag-Lloyd
Ania Hyman, Executive Vice President, Fundacja Koper Pomaga – Copernicus Group
Vicki Bachmann, Vice President of Business Partnerships, Matter
Yaroslav Hnatusko, Co-Founder and Executive Director, Restore Ukraine
Lee Scheumann, Executive Director, Hand in Hand Together
Welcome to Logistics with Purpose presented by Vector Global Logistics in partnership with Supply Chain. Now we spotlight and celebrate organizations who are dedicated to creating a positive impact. Join us for this behind the scenes glimpse of the origin stories change, making progress and future plans of organizations who are actively making a difference. Our goal isn’t just to entertain you, but to inspire you to go out and change the world. And now here’s today’s episode of Logistics With Purpose.
Kristi Porter (00:00:34):
Hello, and thank you so much for joining us for another episode of Logistics with Purpose. Um, we are, this is a really exciting, this is an unprecedented actually episode, Maureen, wouldn’t you say?
Maureen Woolshlager (00:00:45):
Yes. The first of, of, uh, many. I hope.
Kristi Porter (00:00:47):
Yes. First of many. So, um, if you’re a longtime listener, you know, we’re always talking to interesting people doing really amazing things. Also, if you’re a long-term listener, then, you know, we’ve been active in the Ukraine War since early on, and so have all the people joining us today. And so we usually get to talk to one guest at a time, but we’ve been talking to so many people behind the scenes and what they’re doing. So this is a first time, first of its kind panel where we’re bringing together some of the conversations that we’ve had behind the scenes to actually all of our listeners and really being able to share more of the stories that are happening out there, both the positive and the hardship, and just really being able to shine a spotlight on the, just, these are a few of, some of the amazing organizations who have been working to bring peace, bring aid, and bring help, um, during this time.
Kristi Porter (00:01:37):
So, of course, I am joined by my partner in crime, Maureen Slager. Maureen. Um, yeah. And I’m just really excited about this. We’ve been excited since we started floating the idea of this. And now here we are and we’re getting to talk with these amazing people and hear their different perspectives and what they’re doing collectively and what they’re doing individually. So, are you, uh, are you ready for this? Are you, you know, you’ve been working on this, I think, um, as much as anyone else. So I know you’re excited to introduce all these people that you’ve had dozens and dozens of conversations with.
Maureen Woolshlager (00:02:07):
Yeah. So let me introduce who we have here, and then I can talk about kind of what brought us together to get to this call, and then we can dive into, have everyone’s story here. Cause I think that’s really what our listeners wanna hear, right? Cuz they get to hear us chat all the time, right? Yeah. So we have Christopher Hassani from Happe Lloyd. We have Anya Hyman from the Copernicus Group. We have Vicki Bachman from Matter. We have Yaro Zuko from Restore Ukraine, and we have Lee Schumann from Hand in Hand Organization and how all of us came together. And thank you all for joining us and when we’re filming this podcast on a Monday morning. Um, for some of you it might be snowing. For those of you where I am, it’s 75 degrees and sunny, but we’re getting the great pollination here down in the southeast, so, you know, everything’s turning yellow.
Maureen Woolshlager (00:03:02):
Um, but we have been engaged with, uh, getting people to talk about and bring them together ab for about a year since the war in Ukraine started. And most of our listeners know about the leveraging logistics for Ukraine conversation that we’ve been hosting. We now host it every month, but last March, April, may, it was weekly. And then we moved it to, uh, semi-monthly. And now we’re doing it monthly. And we started this because we had a lot of people within our collective network at Vector who were interested in helping get aid and be participating, uh, in helping others over in Ukraine, in the surrounding area. And so what our team kind of came up with was, let’s get all these people on a phone call and start connecting them. So this was not something that Vector was doing in order to, to kind of control the transportation of items going over there.
Maureen Woolshlager (00:04:01):
Certainly we did sponsor a lot of that, but the focus was trying to match different entities up in order to, uh, drive our collective interest in doing good and making the world a better place and actually make a tangible difference. So we do have a really great group here today representing a bunch of different areas in that process, and that wasn’t intentional, but we, we have some, uh, frequent visitors to our call and frequent shippers and, and those with hands on and boots on the ground over there in Eastern Europe. So this is an opportunity for all of us here to get together and talk about some of the background of what we’ve done for the past year, but more specifically what some of these specific organizations have done in order to really drive change in a positive impact. And so with that, I think you ready to get going?
Kristi Porter (00:04:56):
Yes, a hundred percent. Um, yeah, we’ll talk as little as we have to so you can hear about all the incredible things that they’re doing. And of course it’s, it’ll be evident too. Everybody has their own areas of expertise. Some of these people have been on the ground, are on the ground, um, some coordinating here in the us So we also have kind of just a variety of perspectives. Um, and to start us off, uh, would you each give us a quick overview of your organization’s mission as well as how you decided to bec because it was a decision after all, how you decided to become involved in the Ukraine War effort? So, um, our most recognizable name here, we’ll start with Hap Lloyd. Go ahead Chris.
Christopher Husssaini (00:05:34):
Oh, thank you for having me in a, allowing me to take part in this really purpose-driven conversation. I would say as a global ocean carrier, really our, our mission is connecting the world across oceans sustainably. So really that’s the intersection of economic, environmental, and social responsibility. Um, and, and they can’t really be separated. How we got involved in, uh, aid for Ukraine is multifaceted, uh, as an organization. First of all, we had an office in Odessa, uh, and our responsibility to our employees and their families, making sure they were safe to get out and, um, out of harm’s way also to, uh, the people in Ukraine. We’ve, uh, you know, had, and I know we’ll get into it a lot later, a lot of different relief missions that we’ve done through our colleagues in Poland and in in donations on a personal level. Also, my wife is from Ukraine.
Christopher Husssaini (00:06:26):
We met in Kyiv. So it also drove, uh, home very, very deeply. And the partnership we’ve had with Vector, the purpose driven organization that you all are in terms of sending some shipments over, uh, in just locally over, you know, from the US there, it really, really, really, really is valuable. And I know we’ll get into it a little bit later, but there’s a whole bunch of different things were happening in little, like microcosms within Hot Bag, which is a really, really large organization that are occurring that I only have a little bit of the visibility too. But basically it was driven through that we’re all interconnected and, and, and the responsibility to our, our consumers, our, um, our employees, and really just our sustainability model. Mm-hmm.
Kristi Porter (00:07:09):
<affirmative> for sure. Thanks so much. And after all the number of conversations we’ve had, I don’t think I realized your wife was from Ukraine and that you met in Keith. That’s, um, a really, yeah. Something i, I opened my eyes at cause I didn’t know that before. So how, uh, is she doing, how’s her family doing? How are your people doing over there?
Christopher Husssaini (00:07:28):
Yeah, so it’s, you know, obviously mixed. I don’t know if anybody who has family relatives there is doing okay. They may not be physically, uh, harms, but psychologically mm-hmm. <affirmative> and so forth. Fortunately, her family, uh, they’re still there. They’re okay. Physically good. Uh, there’s a lot of psychological elements that are difficult as well. And then unfortunately, she’s obviously had a lot of classmates mm-hmm. <affirmative> that have went into the war and, and, and then not come back. Right. But that’s probably true of many, many people
Kristi Porter (00:07:57):
For sure. Thank you. Um, Vicky, why don’t you jump in next.
Vicki Bachmann (00:08:01):
Okay. Thank you. And thank you for having me come to the panel. It’s been an honor to be part of this conversation for the last year. Um, matters mission is to help people launch projects that improve communities. We do several different things, but on the medical side, we are collecting excess and expired medical supplies and equipment from hospitals throughout the United States. And then we are repurposing those supplies to do good around the world. So we have a variety of projects that we undertake. Um, for example, last year we, um, sent 90 containers of medical supplies and equipment to 18 different countries to outfit clinics and hospitals. So not, we’re not typically an emergency response organization, but what happened last year when the war started, we had people showing up at our door with suitcases. They knew that we had a warehouse of medical supplies and they, we, we opened up our warehouse and let them basically shop so that they could pick out supplies that they could take to Poland or to Ukraine to get to their people to help. And that quickly grew into larger efforts when we learned through Vector and others that there were foundations that started and launched their emission organizations that stepped up to help. And so our response quickly became part of a much larger effort to get medical supplies out. So, uh, that said, we, um, sent, um, uh, almost $2 million in supplies and equipment last year to Ukraine. And, um, it’s just been an honor to be part of this helping process.
Kristi Porter (00:09:39):
It’s incredible. And for those who are not familiar with the, uh, you mentioned expired medical supplies, things like that. For those who are not familiar with that process, will you explain, those aren’t bad, they’re not, you know, um, they’ve not gone bad, anything like that? Will you explain a little bit more about what that means and why those are still
Vicki Bachmann (00:09:56):
Useful? Sure. So what has happened in the last, uh, many years is that hospitals and clinics, um, throughout the country wind up with access and things that they can no longer use or with products that are expired that are still good, but per perhaps just expired because the packaging is expired, but the products are still in good, um, good workable, usable state. And so we, um, are able to repurpose those to a variety of places. So some of them go to medical schools and nursing schools for training purposes, others go to projects and still others go to, um, help or organizations that are helping Ukraine.
Kristi Porter (00:10:36):
For sure. Thanks. Um, Yara, why don’t you go next?
Yaro Hnatusko (00:10:39):
Yes. Thank you very much for inviting me to actually be a part of this panel and conversation and discussion of very extremely talented people. So it’s a very big privilege to be a small, uh, part of them. A little bit about, uh, restore Ukraine. It’s an organization with a mission to restore 10, uh, cities and hundreds of communities in Ukraine. Our primary goal now, since the devastation still mount, and we are based in, in Ukraine where we do massive reconstruction projects, where we rebuild households, we rebuild facilities, actually, uh, facilitating the process of so many displaced internally, uh, families to find their home again. So giving them that, uh, sense of hope and peace and, uh, safety.
Kristi Porter (00:11:38):
And did you exist before the war started, or have you only been, um, around since? In the last year,
Yaro Hnatusko (00:11:46):
We have launched within the first week after the war broke out. And at that point it looked like a soup kitchen and field kitchen all spread out across the <inaudible>. In March alone, we were feeding, uh, three to 4,000 people every day. And some of these stories are very incredible. Uh, sometimes we would come to Metro Station to set up the soup kitchen, and we’re realized people there haven’t had food for two or three days, had no supply, no blankets, sleeping on concrete, sleeping on tiles, but then devastation kept melting, all the damages accumulated, and now people started struggling in their own households. So they became, uh, refugees, not just in Ukraine, but across the whole world. So, uh, we, we try to facilitate the process of actually brings them back to their home place where they actually want to be.
Kristi Porter (00:12:38):
And how is Ariv right
Yaro Hnatusko (00:12:39):
Now? It, it just like, uh, we have said before it, some are physically okay, but, um, are, uh, mentally exhausted, uh, spiritually exhausted. It’s never easy. It’s always under constant shelling, even as we speak. So, uh, suddenly people, uh, found meaning how to reside in, uh, daily shellings. So they started, uh, avoiding all the daily, uh, dangers that the work can bring to them, but that’s their new reality. And Anya,
Ania Hyman (00:13:17):
Hi guys. Thank you so much for, for having us over. We are a very new and a very small organization. So to, uh, you know, sit at the same table with people like, like Vector, like Hap Lloyd, like Matter is really, is really kind of a big deal for us. We actually had the honor to benefit from, from, uh, matters, uh, containers of medical supplies. So thank you. Thank you, Vicki. Um, we, uh, we launched, uh, kind of like restore Ukraine immediately, uh, within a couple of days, uh, of the beginning of the war. We are based in Poland. Um, we never planned to be a humanitarian aid organization. Um, we are a group of graduates of the same high school. That’s what brought us together. Um, and one of us employed a couple of Ukrainians in Poland before the war. And the first day, February 24th, they approached him asking, uh, if he would be able to help them get their families out.
Ania Hyman (00:14:21):
Uh, and he just hopped into the car and drove to the border while his wife, uh, posted in our alumni association, uh, me on our alumni association message board, asking, uh, if other alumni of our high school would be willing to help with maybe, you know, organizing an apartment for them or, or some basic supplies. Uh, so we were really supposed to help two families. And now we are sending convoys of humanitarian aid to Eastern Ukraine roughly every 10 days. Um, so it grew just, it just exploded, just grew exponentially. Uh, and we, our first goal was to, uh, in the first weeks months of the war, was to evacuate as many people as possible. We were running for weeks free buses that would evacuate people from the, um, central train station in Lviv to refugee reception points in Poland. Um, then once the first, uh, wave of refugees kind of died down, we started focusing on those, uh, who settled in our hometown of wood.
Ania Hyman (00:15:26):
It’s, um, a third largest city in Poland, over 700,000 people. So we got quite a few, uh, Ukrainians settling there. Uh, and then once the European Union, once the Polish government stepped in and started providing aid for those people, we, uh, refocused. And now we, uh, our goal is to provide as much humanitarian aid as possible to the villages on the front lines in Eastern Ukraine. So the, the places where it doesn’t make logistical and financial sense for large humanitarian aid organizations to go, we go there, we go to those, to those tiny forgotten places right on the front line. Incredible.
Kristi Porter (00:16:10):
And Lee, bring us home.
Lee Scheumann (00:16:12):
Sure. Uh, yeah, hand hand logistics is exist to facilitate the collection of, you know, quality, uh, humanitarian aid, uh, to have it, uh, shipped through a vector and Halach Lloyd to Ukraine. We have, uh, now five locations that we are sending the aid to and through those ministry partners, uh, they in turn, uh, distribute those things. So I, I work with a number of partners. Um, matter has been great to supply us with a steady stream of medical supplies. Even this morning we have volunteers, which are sorting and, uh, and identifying and putting in, uh, packaging, which allows for easy distribution. We work with an organization called Life Rice that provides, uh, dried, uh, rice and pasta based meals. Uh, then we also work with an organization called, uh, the Minnesota Coalition for Eastern Europe, and the Bible Submission Thrift Center, which provide, uh, used quality used clothing. And, uh, then we also do direct, uh, solicitation of, uh, used, uh, fire protection equipment, which actually has gotten to be really in high demand, uh, because, uh, part of the infrastructure destroyed in Ukraine ha has been the fire departments. So many are left without needed equipment, and they’re also needed without left, without needed, um, uh, protective gear.
Maureen Woolshlager (00:17:32):
One of the things that I think is important for us to kind of close the loop here and bring a little bit into the conversation is everybody here has kind of come from a very different parts of the supply chain and matters of business and humanitarian aid. And I wanna ask each of you kinda how you came to learn about the leveraging logistics for Ukraine conversation. Because I think what we can see here is that it’s an, it’s a success because all of us are here a year later and everyone is connected here, but this was the whole intent of it in the beginning, and I don’t think that we really realized that how successful it could be. So I did wanna ask, let’s say, I’ll start with Anya, you know, how did you hear about this conversation? How did you get involved with, with the, the initial kind of conversations and calls in order to make these connections with matter and, and the other organizations that you’re working with?
Ania Hyman (00:18:34):
We, uh, connected in a kind of really random way, <laugh>, uh, we, very early on, uh, we had an, uh, opportunity to work with a Dubai based non-profit called Red Source in, uh, procuring, uh, um, first eight kids for, uh, for the Ukrainians. Uh, and, uh, red Source connected us with, with you guys. So, and we connected with Red Source through a cousin of one of our alumnis. So it was <laugh>, uh, a very roundabout way, but, but I was absolutely, the first time I participated in the meeting, it, it must have been, um, I don’t know, April, March, maybe April. And, uh, and I was absolutely floored, uh, with the quality of conversation with, with how meaningful and productive and important they were providing that it was, you know, the early days and, and we over mainly dealing with massive chaos and no one knew what was happening. And, uh, here, these, these meetings have been an anchor and a place to, to really put all of our work into perspective. So thank you. That was tremendously
Maureen Woolshlager (00:19:45):
Valuable. That’s great feedback. Thanks. Vicky. What about you? And Matter?
Vicki Bachmann (00:19:50):
Well matter, uh, does a lot of things to, um, help people across the globe have access to healthcare. And so because of that, we have a global, uh, projects group that is constantly coordinating with our partners on the ground in multiple countries. And so we have our, through our connections with Vector, and in those efforts, we learned about the, um, putting together of this group so that we jumped in last year and did what we could to help.
Maureen Woolshlager (00:20:20):
Lee, what about you?
Lee Scheumann (00:20:20):
Yeah, we’ve been involved actually sending a to Ukraine personal, I’ve been involved since 2009. Wow. And we were working, you know, sending our things through Odessa. Well, obviously at the time of the war, that got totally disrupted. And so we were scrambling then to figure out what was a new method of, uh, getting things into Ukraine in that process. We were working with Matter to set up a, uh, shipment of, uh, hospital supply and, uh, equipment. And, uh, so it was through then with Matter that they put us in touch with, uh, vector. And it’s been a great working relationship since then.
Maureen Woolshlager (00:20:58):
And Yaro, how, I remember we first spoke a couple months ago, but I can’t remember how you, you were able to kind of hear about the conversation and join in with us.
Yaro Hnatusko (00:21:08):
Yes. There is a backstory to actually, or what it means for the organization for Restore Ukraine to be able to ship these supplies to, is that in our circumstances, we’re based on a ground right on the front line with all of our employees and operational capacity that we have come to the point towards end of the last year that we were able to give what we had, uh, food supplies, we had them, we procure internally, we give them, but o overall with all of the other projects related to construction, hygiene, food distribution, and so on, we worked very limited because there is a massive scarcity around the country. Everybody needs identical supplies, every household needs windows, every, uh, family, every household, again, needs some humanitarian supplies. And we started, uh, working actively in expanding our presence, uh, in the, uh, United States. And that is actually when we realized that is, uh, much more room, uh, for Restore Ukraine to actually supply even more supplies to, uh, to use the resident of hockey. And it’s how, uh, we got connected with Vector, and then with Vector we got connected with, uh, matter and so on. And as of today, together we were able to ship a two containers with mixed medical supplies that are, again, entirely not present across the whole country. There is no way to procure them. There is no way to purchase them, the only ways actually to, uh, existing in the US and ship it overseas.
Maureen Woolshlager (00:22:48):
Thank you. And Chris, last but not least, but I did wanna say that I, I’m curious how Hop kind of came into the conversation specifically with, with, with Vector and Supply Chain now and everyone around Ukraine, but I’m really curious how you became the point of contact as well, because you have such a strong connection. Ha Lloyd is such a large organization, but you have such a personal connection to Ukraine. Uh, was that just by accident or how did that, you know, end up on your desk and you were able to be the one that’s, you know, been able to work with us so closely in the past year?
Christopher Husssaini (00:23:25):
Yeah. You know, as the same goes, luck is being ready for the moment, right? So I think it’s a combination, it’s a little bit coincidental, but doing our close relationship and partnership with Vector, which is a key client, one of our sales reps where, you know, Seth, who is assigned to Vector, obviously knows my personal deep feelings and entrenched, uh, relationships to Ukraine and also brought it up to me as well. So I think it’s a combination of the two. And then obviously it was due to our partnership with Vector and, and bringing up the opportunity, the purpose-driven opportunity, sorry, the light went off in here after move a little bit. Uh, that really, you know, really we, we were able to quickly get consensus from our, our president in S V P and needed above to do it. So we’re really, really happy about that.
Maureen Woolshlager (00:24:13):
Yeah. That’s how, you know, one thing to mention, we’re, we’re a small company and when this started, we really didn’t know the reach that it would extend to as we started to engage others in conversation and really start emailing a lot of people and asking, uh, people on LinkedIn and, you know, people at the grocery store, wherever, Hey, join our call. And so I think this panel here is a wonderful example of how those small touches kind of like that pass it down the lane game that we all have played as children. And we’ve even done it in some of those like, you know, leadership seminars, how, how that works in order to really drive change because no form of communication is too small. And, you know, I think this is just one example of how all those, you just tell one person and if they tell one person or two people how widespread, you know, the impact can be. So, and this is a great example of
Kristi Porter (00:25:10):
That for sure. Yeah. Um, a great example of, yeah, what we get to talk about every month and the, what we walk away with and the inspiration that comes with that. And to see people working in so many different ways, so many creative ways, which you, uh, all outlined earlier, the different things that you’re doing. Some of you sprung up since the war. Some of you hap has 175 year history. Lee talked about being there since 2009. Vicky, you guys have been around a long time. But that also means resources are limited, right? For everybody, no matter whether you’re a large company or a small company. Um, some of you already had charitable projects that you were invested in, uh, Anya and Yaro. You didn’t have to start something, you could have just gone along with somebody else or donated money to somebody else working there.
Kristi Porter (00:26:00):
Um, so was it hard to convince? Was it hard to get going? Hard to convince, hard to get started with so many things underway. So many resources. I know even talking to, um, the corporate side of things, you know, they were trying to figure out how to juggle this with their giving priorities that they had already outlined for the year. Um, and so some of you may be coming up against that in your conversations as well. So was it, was it a difficult decision to get involved? Um, you know, what was that process like? Uh, obviously there’s the moral need, which we all I think understand, but then there’s the practical need that comes along with that. So talk a little bit about that, Lee, we’ll start with you.
Lee Scheumann (00:26:37):
Sure. My, my connections with Ukraine go back to, uh, uh, 1997. Uh, I started activity there teaching, uh, some modular classes at a Bible school in Zaparro. Uh, then that moved on to doing church planting, church construction. Then that evolved into, uh, working with, uh, other ministries. And 2009 at a couple organizations approached me because of my connection saying, Hey, we’d like to send Ukraine, uh, a to Ukraine. Can you work with us? And well then it kind of grew from there. So when, uh, my connections are, are long and deep, uh, having, you know, probably been to Ukraine 20, 25 times, I have a daughter-in-law who’s from Ukraine. So it’s highly personal. I have a lot of friends in Ukraine, uh, that I connect with on a regular basis. And again, many of these have been, you know, suffered and they’re displaced. Um, and then finding myself with all a huge network of, uh, my congregation, they’ve been very supportive. Other pastors churches in the area. And, uh, then, uh, it just, it worked, really worked well and it was obvious for me this was the right direction, uh, in which to move. So that’s, um, we’re moving well, and, uh, it’s, uh, it’s encouraging.
Kristi Porter (00:27:50):
Yeah. Very well, for sure. Chris, what about hop a
Christopher Husssaini (00:27:53):
Yeah, I mean, uh, it was even easier than I thought it was. Uh, I mean, first of all, as I mentioned, sustain sustainability is a big part in social environmental, all of that, uh, as part of our moral compass and our, what I like to call economic altruism, finding that intersection between a win-win of profitability, but also doing what is morally in our principles, right? So it was e I didn’t think it would be difficult. Candidly, I didn’t think we would be, as our job as I know we’re an agile organization, uh, to move quickly on it. And we were, and I was pleasantly surprised. And it seems like it’s just snowballed, right? So a as I mentioned, there’s the things we’re doing locally and localized, and then there’s the centralized mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So sometimes one of the challenges of being a big part of a large organization or a small part of a large organization is, you know, I don’t have full visibility to all that we were doing, cuz there’s a lot of things occurring in different offices, different, uh, countries, different regions, all for the same thing. And then of course, the centralization, but it was, uh, I think we moved rather quickly on it with a matter of weeks or two to partner up on that. So
Kristi Porter (00:29:02):
It’s encouraging. Vicky, what about matter?
Vicki Bachmann (00:29:05):
Well, I would say, first of all, it’s never hard to convince our organization to step in and help. Um, we are, uh, we’re a very small team. We just have 30 people, and we like to say we start small, act fast and think big. And so what we’ve done with Ukraine and um, is probably a perfect example of the way our passionate team tends to work together. So when something happens, we are all very quick to jump in and say, how can we help to respond quickly and to collaborate and make things happen to help others. Um, and so for us, us, because we work on a partnership basis, we’re we don’t have direct connection to the people who are receiving the things that we are donating or re donating I should say. Um, we like to be just as easy to work with as, as we can. Um, we collaborate really closely with our partners so that they can do their work and have effective, um, outcomes to help others improve their lives.
Kristi Porter (00:30:06):
Yeah, for sure. And side note, it’s always exciting when I see pictures of your aid coming in because you have it wrapped with the, you know, signs that say you matter. And I love that that’s just the first thing that somebody’s gonna see when they receive, um, some of your in incredible and generous donations. For sure.
Vicki Bachmann (00:30:23):
Yeah. Thanks for pointing that out because it’s actually one of the small things that we add, but one of the most impactful things. Yeah, we all, we, whenever we send out a container, our whole team signs the You Matter banner, and that is the first thing that is seen when the truck is open from the back, that people know that, uh, that they matter and it draws a connection between those that are giving what’s inside that truck and those that are receiving it so that they know that, um, someone else out there cares about them and cares about their lives.
Kristi Porter (00:30:53):
For sure. Yeah. And what about our two new organizations? What was the decision to start your own thing rather than partnering or, um, just donating money, anything like that? Uh, Anya, we’ll start with you.
Ania Hyman (00:31:06):
So we, um, the decision to, uh, like I said, we, we didn’t really plan to start an organization when we, when we started to get involved, uh, the decision we had a very many, uh, his conversation is about history, uh, and, uh, how all a phenomenal opportunity this is to heal a rift between Poland and Ukraine that has been going on for decades. What an incredible opportunity it is to foster a new Eastern European community that would be separate from Russia. What the, what an opportunity it is to share Poland’s own experience in, in dealing with the Soviet Union in the past. Um, and then we started noticing that, uh, while there are many major, uh, humanitarian aid organizations who are doing great work, uh, it often feels like when you’re donating to, you know, let’s say the Red Cross or Doctors Without Borders, those donations very often seem anonymous or maybe meaningless because they are disappearing in this, you know, massive pile of money and you don’t really know where that money is going to go or how it’s going to be spent.
Ania Hyman (00:32:28):
Uh, and then once we started going to Ukraine, being on the ground first in Lavi and Kiev, then we, uh, then our, our, one of our first big projects was Bucha right after, uh, right after the, the horrible massacres there. Um, and we started seeing how, uh, it is difficult for those huge organizations to deliver truly personalized, individualized aid. It’s just simply, uh, impractical, it’s just impossible. And we, and we could, we could fill in that gap. We could be doing it by being there on the ground, by going to the same villages repeatedly by building interpersonal connections with the people whom we are aiding. Um, it just, it just seemed like the right thing to do. It just seemed like we have a role to play, which the big ones just cannot fulfill. So, so there is room for the small ones to step in
Kristi Porter (00:33:23):
A hundred percent. That’s really powerful. Thank you for sharing that. Um, in Yara, what about
Yaro Hnatusko (00:33:28):
You? Yes, so for restore credit me, the war, uh, turned out in a much different way than, uh, for most of us because, uh, that was my homeland. That’s where my family, uh, used to be. I was actually able to evacuate them to us to live with me. But still extensive members of the family are there. Uh, within the first day of war, actually, my younger brother recorded a video of a missile flying over our house that was targeted at the military base that was carrying the ammunition. So it, it, it became very random for us, very aggressive and very, uh, rapid. And we realized that we have to start immediately. And I had a phone call, uh, with my brother who actually, uh, is the deputy c e o of one of the largest wholesalers of construction materials on the east of Ukraine. So we discussed, what can we do, what can we launch?
Yaro Hnatusko (00:34:31):
And the immediate response was that we started asking friends and families and, uh, friends of friends just to collect some money for immediate crisis relief response in HQ and then realize that with our own resources, there is not much humanitarian, uh, aids that we can, uh, give to people and fire away even from match it with the ruins in h because Aiv, uh, to let all listeners know it is only 20 to 30 miles away from the border with Russia. So very accessible reach of old missiles that are going to Ukraine to Kyiv. And we realize that now we need to become actually a recognized of proper organization, both in Ukraine and in the us. And we started actively actively forming the agreements in partnerships with large and global organizations where Restore Ukraine actually became the implementing partner on the ground. That’s how we’re able to execute a lot of our construction reconstruction and, uh, many other projects across, uh, different, uh, directions.
Maureen Woolshlager (00:35:44):
So a lot of, a lot of you on the call here have, you know, teams on the ground or are working with refugees, whether it be in Ukraine or outside of Ukraine, or even in the us. And, you know, I think we would, our listeners would really like to hear some accounts on, you know, what they’ve seen or experienced. If, if you would be willing to share any of that, I know that, you know, Anya would, would you be able to kind of contribute anything to that as far as what your team has seen?
Ania Hyman (00:36:14):
So our main focus, uh, is like I said, the villages, uh, the small towns and villages on the front lines, uh, outside of Kyiv and, uh, around Donk, that’s where we, that’s where we go right now. Um, the interesting thing is that when, um, is to realize that most of the people who are left, there are old women. Men in Ukraine have a way shorter lifespan on average than women do. Uh, so there are in general fewer elderly men than women, uh, anywhere. But, uh, in those villages, uh, you know, young men have been drafted, have, have joined the forces, uh, young woman and children very often left, if not for, uh, Europe, uh, Western Europe, then at least for Western Ukraine, where it’s much safer. Uh, so the people who we are mainly dealing with are elderly, very often sick ladies who, uh, need a completely different kind of humanitarian aid than kind of the, the, then the standard thing that, that comes to mind.
Ania Hyman (00:37:22):
Um, for example, one of the, uh, one of the families that we’re helping the uh, is uh, uh, a lady who is 102, and she’s been taken care of her by her 77 year old daughter. And the daughter is the young one in the family. So when other organizations, um, go there, one of the notable exceptions that is, uh, actively present in those areas is, uh, world Central Kitchen. What World Central Kitchen does, for example, is they arrived in town, they set up, uh, a, uh, like point where you can collect food in, uh, in like a central square, but in order to benefit from that aid, you have to be able to get to that central square, then wait online for an unspecified length of time, pick up a parcel and carry it back home. So if your target is women in your eighties, they are physically incapable of doing that.
Ania Hyman (00:38:23):
That is aid that is never going to reach them. Uh, they can count on their neighbor to help, but then the neighbor has to prove to those distributing aid that he deserves two packages instead of one, because he’s going to share that. So what we do is we prepare individualized parcels that our volunteers, we don’t use any intermediaries, we deliver all of our aid personally. So our volunteers carry that, those food parcels, those supplies into the houses of those ladies left out there. So that is the, you know, this, this is like an example of how you have to kind of be truly on the ground and be tailoring your age really to what is happening out there, rather than, uh, you know, relying on, on standard procedures that that might have worked in in other situations. But what we do see is, is trauma on a, on a level that is truly hard to convey trauma on a level that, uh, if you simply watch the news will never reach you.
Ania Hyman (00:39:27):
It is, uh, it is difficult to say that, but the situation on the ground is way, way worse than what you see on the news. Uh, it makes sense that there is, um, you know, that the Ukrainian army is making sure that the news don’t re doesn’t really show just how bad it is just to pr, you know, preserve the morale and, and take care of their own people. So, uh, it’s already bad what you see on tv, what you see in the papers, but when you go there, the, the level of suffering is it is unimaginable. It, it truly is incomprehensible.
Maureen Woolshlager (00:40:03):
Anya, what, two things I wanna point out that you said that, uh, Christie and I have talked about with another podcast that we did with someone who’s actually, uh, kind of on the front lines in Ukraine, but I think it’s very poignant for our listeners to understand is that kind of everybody in this group here is involved with getting aid and they know that it’s getting to the intended recipients. It’s not going to a warehouse, it’s not going, you know, somewhere, like you said, you had said earlier about when people wanna give humanitarian aid and they just kind of push it forward and they don’t really know the impact that it has or if it’s even getting to the intended users. One thing that I think everybody in this group can attest to is that the aid that you’re, that you’re sending, or if you’re on both ends that you’re receiving, it’s going to people in need.
Maureen Woolshlager (00:40:54):
It’s not getting stuck in kind of a bureaucracy somewhere. And I think that, that you saying that from your firsthand experience is, is is making it more true than just Christie and I as podcast hosts talking about that, you know, in other forums. But, but the other thing that you said, which I think is important, and you can only really understand it if you have boots on the ground, is that tailoring the aid to what is actually needed. Because those of us here, you know, with, you know, in our houses or with electricity, and we’re not in this kind of high conflict area, like we don’t always know what is needed. We think we know what’s needed because that’s what we’re trying to project or understand. And so here, the panel in this group, you know, or the group in this panel, you know, it’s really wonderful to hear, even though these stories are are sad, and you know, it’s important that our listeners are understanding that, you know, we, we under we’re trying to understand what’s needed and kind of accommodate that instead of just push aid forward and say, you know, look, yay, we’re sending aid without really understanding the impact it has.
Maureen Woolshlager (00:42:06):
Um, and so thank you f you know, for sharing that, you know, that’s, those are two really I think, important things to kind of sum up. You know, Yaro, I know your team has, uh, some, some people on the ground there. Would you be able to speak to any, you know, in addition to what Anya has said?
Yaro Hnatusko (00:42:23):
Yes, absolutely. And in addition to what Anya said is that, uh, with us actually having our, uh, feed the door of so many beneficiaries across Ukraine and in h these are very incredible stories that they share in testimonies. And some of them are very heartbreaking and actually has to be a new ability, uh, to process them and to filter. Because with us actually being here and, uh, given the transparency of what actually life is in Ukraine, it’s a much bigger strain on our hearts because we, uh, if we can call it worse visionaries. And we have seen that amount of pain that we have seen. Uh, for example, in March last year, uh, right after we received some of the first, uh, supplies of, uh, humanitarian aid, we started distributing them across very vulnerable communities. And one of our volunteers packed in his own car, uh, BB diapers and BB food, and on the way to community, he got under attack twice. And that was a time when Hark was still invaded, uh, not the city, but parts of the Ariv State War. So just for delivering BB diapers, that’s what he had to come across. So when he got back to the warehouse, his hands were shaking for about two hours, he couldn’t talk. So that’s the basically story of a volunteer who actually wanted to distribute some aid. Uh, it, it’s, uh, very difficult.
Maureen Woolshlager (00:44:04):
Thank you for sharing that. Lee. I know that your group has some connections, um, if not from hand in hand, but your partners, you know, on the front lines. Would you be able to share any of those?
Lee Scheumann (00:44:17):
Sure, yeah, it’s really helpful. Knowing
Kristi Porter (00:44:19):
You’ve been there a couple of times yourself in the last
Lee Scheumann (00:44:21):
Year? Uh, no, I’ve not gone. Okay. Just cause of the safety issue. But I do have regular communication with individuals from, you know, about a half, half a dozen places in Ukraine right now. And it’s very helpful for me to hear what are the local needs, which are there. Um, you know, for instance, we’re loading a container tomorrow, which is going to Tcai and that’s being coordinated through the Rotary Club of Tcai. And what they’re saying is, we have a desperate need for medical supply, please send us medical supply only. So the tomorrow is gonna be a hundred percent medical supply. Well, next week we’re gonna send a container to, um, Kavinski, which is a suburb of Kyiv right next to Bucha and or pin. And, uh, they’re the ones who got back to me and said, you know, our fire departments have been destroyed.
Lee Scheumann (00:45:12):
Can you help us? Yes. And uh, they also have, uh, contacts, uh, they have a rehabilitation center right now, which they are housing 200, um, soldiers who’ve been wounded in recovery. And they’re saying, send us men’s clothing. Uh, we have children Orphan send us children’s clothing. So with our volunteers, and I’ve got a great network of volunteers, we’re able to sort the clothing, label it, and then we can, you know, isolate in a sense what is the need and to do more designated, you know, targeting for that. Um, food I have been told repeatedly is a huge need, which is there. And, you know, so through, again, our partners, we try to figure out who needs what and uh, to send accordingly there. Um, it is interesting now I’m starting to get requests for medical equipment, uh, for beds, for diagnostics. Um, it’s, it, this, uh, you know, the requests that need continue to grow, uh, cuz the need is so massive, you know, which is there. But the the wonderful thing is that we’re able to respond in a sense, in a targeted fashion so that we’re not sending a full truckload of clothing when what they need is food, you know, that. But now we can kind of par parcel out clothing proportionately, uh, so that it meets the clients that, or the people that they’re trying to help.
Maureen Woolshlager (00:46:37):
Well, and that kind of goes back to what Anya was saying, being able to tailor the need, you know, because you have people on the ground there that can tell you, even though there is a delay with the shipping time and things like that. But you know, what you’re shipping is getting to the people that you’re in conversation with. And that is, you know, I think what’s important to kind of see kind of the fruits of your labor and everything kind of come to fruition there. Yeah. Um, even though there isn’t a little bit of a delay, um, Vicky, I know we keep every time, uh, medical supplies come up, I mean, 90% of the time, at least in our conversations here with the leveraging logistics for Ukraine, the conversations, a lot of the people that we’ve been able to bring into the fold and connect matter has been, uh, a strong supporter. You know, the majority supporter there. We call Chris’s team to find out the shipping schedule. We call Vicky’s team and we say, Hey, can you put this group, you know, on the wait list for the next batch of medical supplies? How, how much are you in touch, if at all, with anybody kind of on the receiving end mm-hmm. <affirmative> that, that you might be able to speak about?
Vicki Bachmann (00:47:45):
Yeah. Um, you know, I guess to answer that question, I would, I, I think it’s probably better to hear firsthand stories that the others have shared today. We hear lots and lots of stories. Um, many of them are heart-wrenching and, uh, difficult to bear. Um, but if I shared them, I would just be passing on a third party story. So I guess I would say that I would refrain to share anything specific. Um, but I will say, as, as you mentioned that our name keeps coming up today with the listeners that are out there hearing our story, um, that because of the operations that we have in collecting medical supplies and equipment from hospitals, we, um, we do have a nice supply of, um, pallets of, uh, relief care that we want to share with others. So if anybody who’s listening has an interest in receiving, um, additional supplies to have them reach out, which of course we’re gonna talk about a little bit later today, but, um, just wanted to, to share that element.
Maureen Woolshlager (00:48:47):
Thank you. And Chris, I don’t wanna miss you. I know that, um, I wanna, curious to see, do you have, I know you have family that’s there and friends of friends, can you, and I’m not sure if Haag has people on the ground there, but I’m curious if you can have anything to add to this, this part of the conversation?
Christopher Husssaini (00:49:07):
Yeah, I guess to echo, uh, Vicky’s comment, a lot of it is secondhand. In my case, of course, uh, we have some colleagues that, uh, were in Odessa, but all of these we’re talking about are, are sadly to say the lucky ones. When I say lucky, it’s not because they’re psychological things there. I will say though, talking to my mother-in-law, which my wife does every day, they’re in a city called ome, which is a pretty large military city. And, uh, she says, it’s just the bodies, the coffins of young soldiers coming back daily with the flowers. It has a psychological element. So I would just imagine not only that, but what about the children? What about those growing up in this environment, even when this is over, how that trauma, how that view of the world and other countries, how is that gonna feed into their psychology for the rest of their life? So it, it’s just more of a question. And, uh, again, I also was very, very interested in hearing for the first time counts from, from Yaro, for example, naia. So, um, fa fascinating and heartbreaking. Yeah. At the same time.
Ania Hyman (00:50:13):
Yeah. I, sorry to interject, but what, what, uh, what Chris just said, um, we, like also Lee mentioned, uh, you know, we, we do tailor our aid to the people on the ground, so we constantly listen to what is, what is needed. And uh, two weeks ago we, uh, received a request for body bags, child size, and that is, that is one of those moments that you really just don’t know what to do. You know? Like, of course it’s needed. Of course it’s something that we should, if, you know, if, if they need it, this is what we’re going to deliver. But, but how do you even go about it? You know? It’s, it’s not, and, and, you know, I’m so, I’m so perfectly comfortable. I live in New York, you know, I’m, I’m most of the time 8,000, you know, kilometers away from, from everything there. But it’s, but even at this distance, that is very difficult to, to deal with
Kristi Porter (00:51:09):
For sure. Yeah. Um, thank you all for sharing and know that is the, certainly diff the difficulty that you guys deal with on a daily basis. Um, but we, as we see in every tragedy, um, there is, you know, you we’re seeing the worst of humanity, but we’re also seeing the best of humanity and what people can do when they collaborate and rally and, and work together. And so, you know, and to Anya’s point earlier as well, we want people to give no matter, no matter how they can give. So if it is to, you know, red Cross does a great job. World Central does a great job, you know, but there is also a place. And so if it’s important for our listeners to know where their funds are going, then choose one of these smaller organizations where they can understand more of their impact.
Kristi Porter (00:51:57):
And certainly there is a place for them. And, and it’s such an ongoing conflict and such a devastating situation that there is room at the table for everybody, um, who wants to help no matter how they can help. And so we’ve certainly seen some bright spots as well. So, you know, I, I want you to each also touch on is there something positive or encouraging that you’ve heard? And I want you to talk about the impact that you’ve made. You know, what have, what has your organization done? Um, we heard from Vicky earlier about some of the, the container size that they made lease talking about container that’s ready to go. So I also want people to understand some of the good that has come out of this and some of the silver lining. Um, so let’s talk about if you have a, um, a positive moment that you wanna share that you’ve seen, witnessed, heard, um, we’ll take any of it as well as just your individual impact, um, what’s been happening, what you’re able to accomplish, whether that’s qualitative or quantitative. So Vicky, I’ll let you kick that one off.
Vicki Bachmann (00:52:56):
Thank you. I, I guess I would say, you know, I’m proud to, to, to share that our mixed medical supplies, um, have really contributed to a qualitative win. Um, we, the comradery of our team has been strengthening for all of us as we have come together internally in our small team here in Minneapolis, uh, to, for the helpful coordination to help, um, uh, communicate with the, the external groups and all of our partners like you guys and others that we’re working with to provide support and help them do their work, um, quantitatively, um, I would say just overall matter last year, uh, saved over 3.5 million pounds of medically equipment and supplies from going into a landfill. So there is a sustainable environmental purpose that we are pursuing as part of our mission. And of that, the, the mixed medical supplies that we are red donating to mission groups and church groups, um, we are proud to say that over 2 million worth was g went to, um, peop organizations like you all to get to the people that need them in, in Ukraine, uh, when access to acute care is so vital right now, and the logistic chain fell apart in Ukraine, the small part that matter can play in helping work with you all at this small cog in the wheel that we are, we’re honored to be part of that, to try to, um, or to at least to know that our supplies are reaching others and are helping others and helping save lives.
Kristi Porter (00:54:37):
Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, thank you. Um, Yara, what about you?
Yaro Hnatusko (00:54:41):
The way that we started our humanitarian attritions in h it was with a very ambitious goal, uh, when we launched the efforts at the end of February and then became a recognition nonprofit in June. So in late winter, we said we have a, all i I announced it to the whole team, uh, let’s fundraise 1 million for all the residents of parking. It was very ambitious, it was way outta reach. We finished the year 2022, which 1.5 million in all the humanitarian projects that we provided, uh, to the people. And with, I said, now that we just discussed that oor body bags, child size is very heartbreaking. But also I’m sure that all of us have seen the miracles. All of us have seen so many resources come into the families that we sometimes don’t even know where the, uh, resources, uh, came from. So the vehicles happen. We have seen them, uh, just like with the volunteer who I shared recently. Somehow he returned home after being targeted twice in his car, just driving this price around and restore. Ukraine right now is on a mark to hit a goal of $5 million in, uh, revenue, uh, for the end of quarter two. Uh, very great numbers, so much, uh, work to do, but we know that without miracles, it, it will never happen.
Maureen Woolshlager (00:56:21):
Yaro, that is a huge accomplishment. Do not, not, you know, sell yourself short here. So I think you should applaud a little bit on your hard work because you are so dedicated to this and, um, 5 million is, is a big deal. Yeah.
Kristi Porter (00:56:37):
Yaro Hnatusko (00:56:38):
We, I actually have my team members who tell me that they don’t actually want to work after 10:00 PM So this is the length of work that we actually have to do. Everybody has 50, 60 hour work weeks just so that we’re able to share more supplies with the residents, right? The devastation, mounts, damage mounts. If we don’t do that, then what else do they have to do? They have nowhere to go, nobody to talk to, uh, nobody to travel. Just like Anya washer. The people who left are elderly women. And for the reason they were left in those eastern very remote communities is that they have lack of resources to travel. They have nowhere else to go. So if we don’t come to them, to their house, to their family, no, nobody else will. So we will just leave them alone hand. That’s a much bigger burden to carry than to work many more hours and spend many more resources.
Kristi Porter (00:57:37):
Lee, I know you have some good stories and some impact. Tell us about it.
Lee Scheumann (00:57:42):
Yeah, I think, uh, so I think of impact. Um, the request which I had for men’s clothing came from, uh, father, uh, Nikolai Linsky, who heads up the, uh, Locos Rehabilitation Center. And in their center, they currently are, uh, housing 200 wounded soldiers. And he said, you know, they, we need clothes for these men. They come, they have no clothes, you know, they come off the combat field, they’re dressed in hospital garb. They just need all the basics which are there. And, um, he also has been connecting with orphans in the Kozinski area. And, uh, so it’s, uh, it’s things which we have available. We can identify, we can ship, we can get there, they can be distributed, uh, the needs can be met. These individuals can know that people care about them. I think that’s one of the things in the midst of a devastating situation, knowing that there are those who are genuinely concerned about their wellbeing are putting forth a significant amount of effort to try to address that, and to provide not only for the physical needs, but also in doing so in the emotional and the spiritual needs, which, uh, obviously exist as well.
Kristi Porter (00:58:50):
For sure, Anya.
Ania Hyman (00:58:53):
So, uh, one of the successes, <laugh>, uh, we work very closely. We, we have Ukrainian partners in Harve. Uh, uh, it’s a nonprofit called Unity and Strength. We, we work with them on a, on a regular, uh, on a regular basis. And, um, with our work in the, in the villages in the east, uh, you know, you hear about, um, Russia, uh, targeting the, uh, ener energy infrastructure and the fact that there are constant issues with, with energy supply, blackouts, rolling blackouts in cities where some of those villages, those are not rolling blackouts, and some of those villages, there is just no electricity for months on end. Uh, and the extent of devastation is such because those areas were previously occupied, those areas were liberated by the Ukrainian armed forces. The extent of devastation is, is so huge that, uh, we realized that we can’t really, um, try and supply generators, for example, to individual households, because that’s just, you know, we’re way too small and, and the need is way too grate.
Ania Hyman (00:59:59):
So we developed a project to, um, set up, uh, shelters like community shelters, um, in those, uh, in those areas, uh, where, where, uh, individual buildings would be equipped with generators, with heaters, with cooking equipment, with first state, uh, equipment, places where people can just gather and get warm and cook and, and charge their phones, charge their power banks, and just be together. Uh, and, uh, we started small. We thought that, you know, oh, if we could do five such places, that would be great. Then, you know, if we could do 20 such places, that would be great. Well, we are about to do 100 such places right now along the, along the Eastern front lines. So, uh, and each, you know, and each place like that is, uh, can service up to 250 people. Uh, so, uh, yes, that’s our, that’s our big recent success. We’re, we’re very happy. That’s
Kristi Porter (01:01:01):
A good one. I’m very happy with that. Yeah, sure. Um, Chris, what about Hapag?
Christopher Husssaini (01:01:06):
Well, I, I would say from my perspective, and that’s the disclaimer, this is my, my perspective <laugh>, I, I, I’d say on the macro, first of all, it’s really just the inspiration and bravery and courage of the Ukrainian people fighting for something that I’d say probably a lot take for granted, which is freedom. And I think that is just, I’m in awe of it, candidly, and, and it’s a reminder that it’s a fight really worth fighting for. I’d say secondary. It’s the reminder that there’s nothing wrong in the world that can’t be fixed by what’s right in the world when we’re united. Right? And if we look at how a lot of the nations, the vast majority of the nations have united, if we look at the panel members here, United mobilized for a cause that things can be accomplished, that change lives. So I would say that’s another positive. And then I’d say lastly, and it’s my hope that for those that have the philosophy that might makes right, an auto autocratic kind of, or driven by autocracy, it gives pause, if not outright fear. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So that is my, my hope, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative> and belief candidate. Yeah,
Maureen Woolshlager (01:02:20):
We’ve been talking about this for, for over a year now. I think the one year anniversary was just a couple days ago. You know, there’s so many things going on in the world. I I wanna ask each of, of you to, to talk about, you know, are you, are you seeing, you know, cause fatigue, what needs are changing? You know, why, why should, why should our listeners still matter, care about what’s going on in Ukraine? You know? And along with that, you know, please loop in, you know, how can our listeners connect with you or your organization, um, contribute, learn, talk to you, any of that, so we can make sure that, you know, the outcome of this, this panel podcast is, you know, continual growth and attention towards this, not just a, not just a platform that, that ends here. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So I figure, Chris, I, we picked on you last, last time, so I’ll pick on you first this time, <laugh>.
Christopher Husssaini (01:03:19):
That seems fair.
Maureen Woolshlager (01:03:20):
You’re the top of my screen, so I figured you’d go first. Yeah. <laugh>.
Christopher Husssaini (01:03:25):
Yeah. So I would say, um, in terms of, I guess my thoughts are, well, let me start with the second part last. The way you could connect with, uh, haplo is by going to our website, hat bag, H A p A g l l o Y d.com, halo.com, or on LinkedIn, or you could follow me, Chris Hassani on LinkedIn or connect with me. I’d love to hear from you in, in regards to really kind of, I think the greater issue at hand here. I think this is just really a, really a good reminder, as I mentioned before, of how if we stay united, we could go ahead and we could effect effectuate change, right? And that, that’s really, really the underlying, uh, thought I’d like to get across and, and how we could help, help together whatever the calls. Yeah. And, and I think this is gonna go on for a long time, even as we move out through the war in Ukraine, it’s gonna be the rebuilding, and obviously we’ve had tragedies in other parts of the world with earthquakes and so forth. So there’s no shortage of, uh, of causes to go after. And I’m really, really impressed by my fennel fellow panel members who are actually on the ground making a difference and really seeing, really firsthand that, that’s really just one thing I wanted to mention.
Maureen Woolshlager (01:04:36):
Thank you. Yeah. Anya, what about you and the Copernicus group? Tell us
Ania Hyman (01:04:42):
Po the, the fatigue, uh, settle in, especially in Poland. You know, Poland, uh, accepted so many refugees, uh, in the early days of the war. Uh, and there was this, um, incredible spirit. I was really worried initially because of the difficult history between Poland and Ukraine, how Poland is going to respond to this sudden influx of, of people, uh, from, uh, from Ukraine. I was so proud, so proud of polls and the way they responded, and how welcoming they were and, and how motivated they were to, to help. But, you know, obviously it’s been a year and that initial hooray, let’s all get together and help that that has, that has died down. Uh, and there has been some, you know, resentment and, and, you know, oh, why, why are Ukrainians getting all the attention? You know, all there are people in Poland who also need help.
Ania Hyman (01:05:37):
You know, why are you, why are you so focused on Ukrainians? Why aren’t you helping your own people? Uh, well, uh, we, what we have to do is not give up and keep pushing, because yes, there are very many people in Poland or in the United States who need help, but hello, we are not being bombed. We don’t have to worry about a foreign army, you know, marching into our town and, and, you know, taking our children or, or, you know, slaughtering our men. So, yes, it’s bad things are happening all over the world, but, but relatively speaking, compared to what, what’s going on in Ukraine, we really have it. We really have it quite easy. We’re, we’re where we are. Um, but, uh, yes, please connect with us. If you Google Copernicus Ukraine, you will find us, uh, our website, our Facebook profile. Uh, we want to share experiences, we want to learn from others.
Ania Hyman (01:06:36):
We want to, uh, learn about projects that we could become part of and, and help with. We obviously are forever in need of more money and more supplies. Let’s face it, the needs are humongous. So fundraising is very, very important. But, uh, but even if you just wanna, you know, drop by and say hello, that’s important to community is important, it’s important to, to find the good in this situation. So even if people feel like they, they are in no position to personally help just, you know, a pat on the back and saying, Hey, we see you, you guys are doing a great job. That is also tremendously, tremendously important. Thank
Maureen Woolshlager (01:07:17):
You. Lee, what about your group and your
Lee Scheumann (01:07:20):
Team? Yeah, I think that obviously you do have, you know, compassion fatigue. You do have obviously other tragedies as happened in northern Syria and Turkey, you know, just very, very recently. Uh, these things, uh, Americans tend to be really good to respond to the crisis of the moment. The challenge is trying to help individuals to understand the ongoing need. Consequently, I find it important to try to communicate to my donors, my volunteers, you know, what we’re doing. And, um, I’ve been encouraged that the interest remains very sustained. And, uh, it is been good to know that, um, as individuals have found out about what we’re doing, they’re initiating the contact for with us. Um, volunteering, we’ve got be between, uh, sorting medical supplies, uh, packing food, sorting clothing, uh, sorting the, uh, fire equipment, you, you know, well over 200 volunteers of working with capacity or another.
Lee Scheumann (01:08:15):
So it’s the, the human labor, you know, which is of help. Uh, financially, uh, our main expense is covering the cost of shipping. We’re an all volunteer organization. Uh, so if individuals want to help us, that’d be greatly appreciated. Website is hand in hand logistics.org and, uh, that it, um, they can go there to give or to find out more about us. And, uh, also on Facebook, I’m on LinkedIn, but, uh, just whatever ne whatever can be done is greatly appreciated. Um, it goes a hundred percent toward, uh, helping the people in Ukraine. We’re just all volunteers here.
Maureen Woolshlager (01:08:55):
Ly Yara, what about you and your team?
Yaro Hnatusko (01:08:58):
Yes, we have always seen the ways of humanitarian aid being shipped to Ukraine. Uh, we, we have seen a very large, uh, import coming to Ukraine right in the beginning of where we have seen so many supplies, and sometimes we have seen the people who were actually have been supplied to the point that they didn’t need the help, but they were still collecting it. But at this point, we have come across a very large issues that stops us working internally. Uh, we started looking at how other organizations are due on, on the ground, and we have seen the level of their humanitarian works as a growing, as a drop in. And once we actually started talking to multiple beneficiaries recently to actually for us to come into their permanent complexes, start the rebuilding process, we realized that they are so hesitant to share the information, share their needs, because there have been so many other organizations that they have come to their household, have made so many promises.
Yaro Hnatusko (01:10:07):
And, uh, to, to keep it more detailed, uh, since the worst 750 organizations open in Ukraine, which is incredible that there are so many people who want to be committed to actually bring, uh, the, uh, safety to Ukrainians and, uh, bring them the refuge. But in our terms, what it looks like is that they have given, uh, so many processes and they have run out of money of resources. So now the beneficiaries are very e empty handed, and this is a very large issue because we know that the war is still going. And, uh, sadly there will be many more bags that, uh, u Ukrainians will have to, uh, purchase. And the way to actually get to know about what kind of work restore Ukraine does, uh, visitors listeners can go to restore ukraine.org and actually get to know, uh, from our blog that we keep very updated what we do, how we do, who are our partners, but also on a website page with the contacts, they can actually get in touch with me directly and start brainstorming of what exactly we can do together, what kind of projects we can work on and implement for the local residents of Har Kiv.
Maureen Woolshlager (01:11:36):
Thank you, Vicky. Yeah, it’s only, it’s, it’s great for us to kind of conclude with you and, and your, your team here because of your connection to nearly everybody on the, on the panel as well. So, you know, if you would, uh, do us the honor here of tying it all together.
Vicki Bachmann (01:11:55):
Oh, thank you so much, Maureen. And, uh, Christie, you also, um, first of all, if anyone out there would like to reach out to us, we are interested in, um, having a conversation with you, I can be reached at, um, LinkedIn or at Vicky dot oh, firstname.lastname@example.org, or you can reach our website, um, that is matter.ngo and learn more about what we are doing. Um, I would say you heard the stories today, and we probably just heard a few stories. There are thousands and thousands of stories out there, which, uh, tell me that the need is there now. The need is going to be there for a very, very long time. And so, uh, to try to empower everyone to, um, help one person at a time, and know that you can’t help everyone but try to help one person at a time and know that you are making a difference in this world.
Vicki Bachmann (01:12:52):
Um, we are really thoughtful to respond to the acute needs of our, um, of the, of our organizations. And we talk about logistics with a purpose. Um, just last week, we were asked to, um, try to locate, um, a special surgical saw that was going to be needed in a field hospital for amputations. So for those of you who are listening, that’s something that might be needed in an, an er in a civilized world like America, maybe once a quarter. But these are things that are needed sometimes daily Over in Ukraine, we’re talking about outfitting medical supplies and other things for a war zone. It’s hard to believe that we are actually even having this conversation, but we are, um, and I guess if anything drives home the point that that need is still there, that it can be something that can re-energize us to try to help others and to keep motivated and to keep doing everything that we can to help the people there. Um, uh, get through the next day and, and the next year.
Kristi Porter (01:14:03):
Thank you. Um, thank you all for your time. I know you’re busy, you’re doing great things. Thank you for what you’re doing individually, please thank your teams for us, and thank you for everything you’re doing collectively. Um, we of course also thank our listeners for listening because we hope this, as Vicki said, re-energizes the conversation, keeps things going. Um, I know everyone here would appreciate, uh, just you connecting, saying hi. And also just, yeah, getting back into the conversation if you’ve dropped off or if you, um, you know, still wanna help, still have resources to help, then please find a way to do that, whether it’s through one of these organizations or someone else working. There’s still a lot of work to do. And we’re all here and we’re, we’re gonna continue standing with Ukraine. So, um, thank you everyone. Have a great day. And thank you for just being the embodiment of logistics with purpose. We love working with you, we love hearing from you, and this is just a little slice of what our monthly conversations are like. So if you wanna join us, then, um, we welcome anybody who wants to help solve problems or, or listen and figure out how they can contribute. But thank you so much. This has been a terrific first panel episode, and we hope it won’t be the last. Um, but from our team at Vector, wishing you all a great day, and we’ll see you next time. Thanks so much.
Christopher Hussaini is the Senior Sales Manager with a demonstrated history of working in the maritime industry. He is skilled in negotiation, people management, operations management, freight sales, and digitalization for the ocean carrier industry. He holds a Masters of Science from the University of York, United Kingdom, and a BA in Psychology from the University of Miami. Connect with Christopher on LinkedIn.
Ania Hyman is a doctoral candidate in the Department of History at American University in Washington, DC, Ania’s academic work focuses on post-World War II reconstruction of Central and Eastern European urban areas. Since the first days of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Ania has been working full time for Fundacja Koper Pomaga – Copernicus Group. In the role of Executive Vice President, she is responsible for fundraising in the United States, international partnerships, procurement, and the day-to-day operations of the nonprofit. A mother of two dogs, a wife of one husband. She shares her time between New York and Poland.
Vicki Bachmann has a 25+ year career in non profit work and corporate sales. At MATTER, Vicki engages with medical professionals and mission organizations to advance MATTER’s 360 healthcare initiative. Vicki’s belief in MATTER’s mission and vision is exemplified in her relationships with a wide variety of businesses nationwide. She advances the mission by helping companies fulfill their sustainability, community and employee engagement objectives. Connect with Vicki on LinkedIn.
Yaroslav Hnatusko is the Co-Founder and Executive Director of Restore Ukraine. Restore Ukraine is the nonprofit to rebuild tens of cities and hundreds of communities for displaced Ukrainian families. We are bringing comfort and love so that they don’t have to seek refuge ever again. Connect with Yaroslav on LinkedIn.
Lee Scheumann is the Executive Director of Hand in Hand Together.
Maureen Woolshlager started her career at McMaster-Carr’s Management Development Program working in sales, marketing, distribution operations, finance and accounting. After McMaster-Carr, she spent a year managing operations in one of Target Corporation’s warehouses before finding a role within a small management consulting company in Denver, Colorado. She worked on large projects for international food and restaurant companies and advised on account management, business development, operations management, warehouse operations, continuous improvement and distribution center operations, and procurement/supplier/inventory optimization. She has spent the last 9 years living in Belgium & Germany where her husband has been stationed as a US Army officer. Maureen has her B.A. from Emory University. She earned a certificate in Management & Marketing from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania & her M.B.A. from the University of Phoenix. Learn more about Vector Global Logistics here: https://vectorgl.com/
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.
Joshua is a student from Institute of Technology and Higher Education of Monterrey Campus Guadalajara in Communication and Digital Media. His experience ranges from Plug and Play México, DearDoc, and Nissan México creating unique social media marketing campaigns and graphics design. Joshua helps to amplify the voice of supply chain here at Supply Chain Now by assisting in graphic design, content creation, asset logistics, and more. In his free time he likes to read and write short stories as well as watch movies and television series.
Director of Communications and Executive Producer
Donna Krache is a former CNN executive producer who has won several awards in journalism and communication, including three Peabodys. She has 30 years’ experience in broadcast and digital journalism. She led the first production team at CNN to convert its show to a digital platform. She has authored many articles for CNN and other media outlets. She taught digital journalism at Georgia State University and Arizona State University. Krache holds a bachelor’s degree in government from the College of William and Mary and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from the University of New Orleans. She is a serious sports fan who loves the Braves. She is president of the Dave Krache Foundation. Named in honor of her late husband, this non-profit pays fees for kids who want to play sports but whose parents are facing economic challenges.
Vicki has a long history of rising to challenges and keeping things up and running. First, she supported her family’s multi-million dollar business as controller for 12 years, beginning at the age of 17. Then, she worked as an office manager and controller for a wholesale food broker. But her biggest feat? Serving as the chief executive officer of her household, while her entrepreneur husband travelled the world extensively. She fed, nurtured, chaperoned, and chauffeured three daughters all while running a newsletter publishing business and remaining active in her community as a Stephen’s Minister, Sunday school teacher, school volunteer, licensed realtor and POA Board president (a title she holds to this day). A force to be reckoned with in the office, you might think twice before you meet Vicki on the tennis court! When she’s not keeping the books balanced at Supply Chain Now or playing tennis matches, you can find Vicki spending time with her husband Greg, her 4 fur babies, gardening, cleaning (yes, she loves to clean!) and learning new things.
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.
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.
Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain Now and TECHquila Sunrise
When rapid-growth technology companies, venture capital and private equity firms are looking for advisory, they call Greg – a founder, board director, advisor and catalyst of disruptive B2B technology and supply chain. An insightful visionary, Greg guides founders, investors and leadership teams in creating breakthroughs to gain market exposure and momentum – increasing overall company esteem and valuation.
Greg is a founder himself, creating Blue Ridge Solutions, a Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader in cloud-native supply chain applications, and bringing to market Curo, a field service management solution. He has also held leadership roles with Servigistics (PTC) and E3 Corporation (JDA/Blue Yonder). As a principal and host at Supply Chain Now, Greg helps guide the company’s strategic direction, hosts industry leader discussions, community livestreams, and all in addition to executive producing and hosting his original YouTube channel and podcast, TEChquila Sunrise.
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.
Host of TEKTOK
If there’s one Supply Chain ‘Pro to Know,’ it’s Karin. She’s earned the title for three years and counting – culminating in her designation as the “2020 Supply Chain Pro to Know of the Year.” Karin is also an award-winning digital supply chain, business strategy and technology marketing executive. A sought-after speaker at industry conferences, you will find her quoted in a variety of supply chain publications – and active in forums like ASCM/APICS and CSCMP.
With more than 25 years of supply chain experience, Karin spearheaded strategy and marketing for Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader and IDC MarketScape Leader, Logility. Karin has the heart of a teacher and has helped nearly 1,000 customers transform their businesses and tell their success stories. Today, she is a sought-after advisor helping high-growth B2B technology companies with everything from defining their unique value propositions to introducing new products and capturing customer success. No matter their goals, she makes sure her clients have actionable marketing strategies that help grow global revenue, market share and profitability.
Host of Digital Transformers
Kevin L. Jackson is a globally recognized Thought Leader, Industry Influencer and Founder/Author of the award winning “Cloud Musings” blog. He has also been recognized as a “Top 5G Influencer” (Onalytica 2019, Radar 2020), a “Top 50 Global Digital Transformation Thought Leader” (Thinkers 360 2019) and provides strategic consulting and integrated social media services to AT&T, Intel, Broadcom, Ericsson and other leading companies. Mr. Jackson’s commercial experience includes Vice President J.P. Morgan Chase, Worldwide Sales Executive for IBM and SAIC (Engility) Director Cloud Solutions. He has served on teams that have supported digital transformation projects for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the US Intelligence Community. Kevin’s formal education includes a MS Computer Engineering from Naval Postgraduate School; MA National Security & Strategic Studies from Naval War College; and a BS Aerospace Engineering from the United States Naval Academy. Internationally recognizable firms that have sponsored articles authored by him include Cisco, Microsoft, Citrix and IBM. Books include “Click to Transform” (Leaders Press, 2020), “Architecting Cloud Computing Solutions” (Packt, 2018), and “Practical Cloud Security: A Cross Industry View” (Taylor & Francis, 2016). He also delivers online training through Tulane University, O’Reilly Media, LinkedIn Learning, and Pluralsight. Mr. Jackson retired from the U.S. Navy in 1994, earning specialties in Space Systems Engineering, Carrier Onboard Delivery Logistics and carrier-based Airborne Early Warning and Control. While active, he also served with the National Reconnaissance Office, Operational Support Office, providing tactical support to Navy and Marine Corps forces worldwide.
Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español
Enrique serves as Managing Director at Vector Global Logistics and believes we all have a personal responsibility to change the world. He is hard working, relationship minded and pro-active. Enrique trusts that the key to logistics is having a good and responsible team that truly partners with the clients and does whatever is necessary to see them succeed. He is a proud sponsor of Vector’s unique results-based work environment and before venturing into logistics he worked for the Boston Consulting Group (BCG). During his time at BCG, he worked in different industries such as Telecommunications, Energy, Industrial Goods, Building Materials, and Private Banking. His main focus was always on the operations, sales, and supply chain processes, with case focus on, logistics, growth strategy, and cost reduction. Prior to joining BCG, Enrique worked for Grupo Vitro, a Mexican glass manufacturer, for five years holding different positions from sales and logistics manager to supply chain project leader in charge of five warehouses in Colombia.
He has an MBA from The Wharton School of Business and a BS, in Mechanical Engineer from the Technologico de Monterrey in Mexico. Enrique’s passions are soccer and the ocean, and he also enjoys traveling, getting to know new people, and spending time with his wife and two kids, Emma and Enrique.
Host of Dial P for Procurement
Kelly is the Owner and Managing Director of Buyers Meeting Point and MyPurchasingCenter. She has been in procurement since 2003, starting as a practitioner and then as the Associate Director of Consulting at Emptoris. She has covered procurement news, events, publications, solutions, trends, and relevant economics at Buyers Meeting Point since 2009. Kelly is also the General Manager at Art of Procurement and Business Survey Chair for the ISM-New York Report on Business. Kelly has her MBA from Babson College as well as an MS in Library and Information Science from Simmons College and she has co-authored three books: ‘Supply Market Intelligence for Procurement Professionals’, ‘Procurement at a Crossroads’, and ‘Finance Unleashed’.
Host, 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.
Jeff Miller is the host of Supply Chain Now’s Supply Chain is the Business. Jeff is a digital business transformation and supply chain advisor with deep expertise in Industry 4.0, ERP, PLM, SCM, IoT, AR and related technologies. Through more than 25 years of industry and consulting experience, he has worked with many of the world’s leading product and service companies to achieve their strategic business and supply chain goals, creating durable business value for organizations at the forefront of technology and business practices. Jeff is the managing director for North America at Transition Technologies PSC, a global solution integrator, and the founder and managing principal of BTV Advisors, a firm that helps companies secure business transformation value from digital supply chain technologies and their breakthrough capabilities.
Chief Marketing Officer
Amanda is a marketing veteran and entrepreneur with over 15 years of experience across a variety of industries and organizations including Von Maur, Anthropologie, AmericasMart Atlanta, and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. In 2016, Amanda founded and grew the Magnolia Marketing Group into a successful digital media firm, and now she develops modern marketing strategies, social campaigns, innovative operational processes, and implements creative content initiatives for Supply Chain Now. But that’s just the beginning of her supply chain impact. Amanda also served as the VP of Information Systems and Webmaster on the Board of Directors for APICS Savannah for several years, and is the face behind the scenes welcoming you to every Supply Chain Now livestream! She was also recently selected as one of the Top 100 Women in Supply Chain by Supply Chain Digest and IBM. When she’s not leading the Supply Chain Now marketing team, you can find Amanda with her and her husband Scott’s three kids, in the kitchen cooking, or reading.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Ben Harris is the Director of Supply Chain Ecosystem Expansion for the Metro Atlanta Chamber. Ben comes to the Metro Atlanta Chamber after serving as Senior Manager, Market Development for Manhattan Associates. There, Ben was responsible for developing Manhattan’s sales pipeline and overall Americas supply chain marketing strategy. Ben oversaw market positioning, messaging and campaign execution to build awareness and drive new pipeline growth. Prior to joining Manhattan, Ben spent four years with the Georgia Department of Economic Development’s Center of Innovation for Logistics where he played a key role in establishing the Center as a go-to industry resource for information, support, partnership building, and investment development. Additionally, he became a key SME for all logistics and supply chain-focused projects. Ben began his career at Page International, Inc. where he drove continuous improvement in complex global supply chain operations for a wide variety of businesses and Fortune 500 companies. An APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP), Ben holds an Executive Master’s degree in Business Administration (EMBA) and bachelor’s degree in International Business (BBA) from the Terry College at the University of Georgia.
Host, The Freight Insider
Prior to joining TeamOne Logistics, Page Siplon served as the Executive Director of the Georgia Center of Innovation for Logistics, the State’s leading consulting resource for fueling logistics industry growth and global competitiveness. For over a decade, he directly assisted hundreds of companies to overcome challenges and capitalize on opportunities related to the movement of freight. During this time, Siplon was also appointed to concurrently serve the State of Georgia as Director of the larger Centers of Innovation Program, in which he provided executive leadership and vision for all six strategic industry-focused Centers. As a frequently requested keynote speaker, Siplon is called upon to address a range of audiences on unique aspects of technology, workforce, and logistics. This often includes topics of global and domestic logistics trends, supply chain visibility, collaboration, and strategic planning. He has also been quoted as an industry expert in publications such as Forbes, Journal of Commerce, Fortune, NPR, Wall Street Journal, Reuters, American Express, DC Velocity, Area Development Magazine, Site Selection Magazine, Inbound Logistics, Modern Material Handling, and is frequently a live special guest on SiriusXM’s Road Dog Radio Show. Siplon is an active industry participant, recognized by DC Velocity Magazine as a “2012 Logistics Rainmaker” which annually identifies the top-ten logistics professionals in the Nation; and named a “Pro to Know” by Supply & Demand Executive Magazine in 2014. Siplon was also selected by Georgia Trend Magazine as one of the “Top 100 Most Influential Georgians” for 2013, 2014, and 2015. He also serves various industry leadership roles at both the State and Federal level. Governor Nathan Deal nominated Siplon to represent Georgia on a National Supply Chain Competitiveness Advisory Committee, where he was appointed to a two-year term by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce and was then appointed to serve as its vice-chairman. At the State level, he was selected by then-Governor Sonny Perdue to serve as lead consultant on the Commission for New Georgia’s Freight and Logistics Task Force. In this effort, Siplon led a Private Sector Advisory Committee with invited executives from a range of private sector stakeholders including UPS, Coca-Cola, The Home Depot, Delta Airlines, Georgia Pacific, CSX, and Norfolk Southern. Siplon honorably served a combined 12 years in the United States Marine Corps and the United States Air Force. During this time, he led the integration of encryption techniques and deployed cryptographic devices for tactically secure voice and data platforms in critical ground-to-air communication systems. This service included support for all branches of the Department of Defense, multiple federal security agencies, and aiding NASA with multiple Space Shuttle launches. Originally from New York, Siplon received both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in electrical and computer engineering with a focus on digital signal processing from the Georgia Institute of Technology. He earned an associate’s degree in advanced electronic systems from the Air Force College and completed multiple military leadership academies in both the Marines and Air Force. Siplon currently lives in Cumming, Georgia (north of Atlanta), with his wife Jan, and two children Thomas (19) and Lily (15).
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Kristi Porter is VP of Sales and Marketing at Vector Global Logistics, a company that is changing the world through supply chain. In her role, she oversees all marketing efforts and supports the sales team in doing what they do best. In addition to this role, she is the Chief Do-Gooder at Signify, which assists nonprofits and social impact companies through copywriting and marketing strategy consulting. She has almost 20 years of professional experience, and loves every opportunity to help people do more good.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Kevin Brown is the Director of Business Development for Vector Global Logistics. He has a dedicated interest in Major Account Management, Enterprise Sales, and Corporate Leadership. He offers 25 years of exceptional experience and superior performance in the sales of Logistics, Supply Chain, and Transportation Management. Kevin is a dynamic, high-impact, sales executive and corporate leader who has consistently exceeded corporate goals. He effectively coordinates multiple resources to solution sell large complex opportunities while focusing on corporate level contacts across the enterprise. His specialties include targeting and securing key accounts by analyzing customer’s current business processes and developing solutions to meet their corporate goals. Connect with Kevin on LinkedIn.
Host, 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.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
Jose Manuel Irarrazaval es parte del equipo de Vector Global Logistics Chile. José Manuel es un gerente experimentado con experiencia en finanzas corporativas, fusiones y adquisiciones, financiamiento y reestructuración, inversión directa y financiera, tanto en Chile como en el exterior. José Manuel tiene su MBA de la Universidad de Pennsylvania- The Wharton School. Conéctese con Jose Manuel en LinkedIn.
Host, 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.
Host, Supply Chain Now
The founder of Logistics Executive Group, Kim Winter delivers 40 years of executive leadership experience spanning Executive Search & Recruitment, Leadership Development, Executive Coaching, Corporate Advisory, Motivational Speaking, Trade Facilitation and across the Supply Chain, Logistics, 3PL, E-commerce, Life Science, Cold Chain, FMCG, Retail, Maritime, Defence, Aviation, Resources, and Industrial sectors. Operating from the company’s global offices, he is a regular contributor of thought leadership to industry and media, is a professional Master of Ceremonies, and is frequently invited to chair international events.
He is a Board member of over a dozen companies throughout APAC, India, and the Middle East, a New Zealand citizen, he holds formal resident status in Australia and the UAE, and is the Australia & New Zealand representative for the UAE Government-owned Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA), the Middle East’s largest Economic Free Zone.
A triathlete and ex-professional rugby player, Kim is a qualified (IECL Sydney) executive coach and the Founder / Chairman of the successful not for profit humanitarian organization, Oasis Africa (www. oasisafrica.org.au), which has provided freedom from poverty through education to over 8000 mainly orphaned children in East Africa’s slums. Kim holds an MBA and BA from Massey & Victoria Universities (NZ).
Host, Logistics with Purpose
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.
Sales Support Intern
Alex is pursuing a Marketing degree and a Certificate in Legal Studies at the University of Georgia. As a dual citizen of both the US and UK; Alex has studied abroad at University College London and is passionate about travel and international business. Through her coursework at the Terry College of Business, Alex has gained valuable skills in digital marketing, analytics, and professional selling. She joined Supply Chain Now as a Sales Support Intern where she assists the team by prospecting and qualifying new business partners.