Supply Chain Now
Episode 1264

We're investing, and when I talk about our capital plan, it's to invest in new resources that are more sustainable. That's a big picture. Even inside a supply chain, we can make a difference.

-Dwight Jacobs

Episode Summary

In the energy sector, sustainability isn’t just a buzzword; it’s a necessity. As the world faces urgent environmental challenges, the energy industry plays a critical role in reducing carbon emissions and promoting a cleaner future. Sustainable practices are not only essential for environmental stewardship but also for ensuring long-term resilience and competitiveness in an evolving market.

In this episode of Supply Chain Now, sponsored by Microsoft, Scott Luton and his co-host Kevin L. Jackson are joined by Dwight Jacobs, the Senior Vice President of Supply Chain and Chief Procurement Officer at Duke Energy. They delve into various aspects of the intersection between supply chain procurement, technology, and sustainability within the energy sector.

Dwight shares insights from his journey at Duke Energy, emphasizing the importance of a people-centric approach and servant leadership in driving success. He reflects on Duke Energy’s mission to power communities and discusses the evolving role of technology in achieving sustainability goals, such as transitioning to net zero carbon emissions.

Join us for this conversation that covers a range of topics, from the role of procurement in organizational success to the impact of technology on decision-making processes. Listen in as Dwight highlights Duke Energy’s initiatives, including supplier development programs, embracing innovative technologies like drones for methane detection, their commitment to sustainability, and their proactive approach to driving change in the industry.

Episode Transcript

Intro/Outro (00:03):

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

Scott Luton (00:32):

Hey, hey. Good morning, good afternoon, good evening, wherever you may be. Scott Luton and Kevin L. Jackson with you here on Supply Chain Now. Welcome to today’s show. Kevin, how you doing today? Hey

Kevin L. Jackson (00:41):

Hey, man, it hit 81 degrees up here in the DMV yesterday. We must be, must be, springtime.

Scott Luton (00:49):

Well, you know what you’re going to have to have soon to power air conditioning so we cool down in these summer months. And that’s plenty of power, plenty of energy.

 

Kevin L. Jackson (00:57):

Plenty of power.

 

Scott Luton (00:58):

And folks, I promise you, you haven’t thought about the power and energy industry like we’re going to be talking about here today. Interesting, intriguing show, I think, here today as we dialed in on the intersection of supply chain procurement, technology, sustainability in the energy sector. Stay tuned for an informative, enlightening, and entertaining conversation where we work in barbecue and Krispy Kreme donuts, and a lot more with the big guest today. Kevin should be a great show, huh?

Kevin L. Jackson (01:24):

Yes, you have glaze on your barbecue. No, this is — this is going to be fun. Talk about energy, barbecue, donuts, a show just can’t get any better than that.

Scott Luton (01:36):

And changing how business is done, right?

 

Kevin L. Jackson (01:38):

Yes.

 

Scott Luton (01:39):

That’s one of my favorite parts of today’s conversation. So, hey, today’s episode is presented in partnership with our friends at Microsoft who’s doing some really cool things in the industry, helping to move us all forward very successfully. More on that a bit later.

 

Scott Luton (01:52):

OK, Kevin?

 

Kevin L. Jackson (01:53):

Yes.

 

Scott Luton (01:53):

I’m going to introduce our featured guest here today. Our guest joined Duke Energy in 2002 and served in a wide variety of key leadership roles. Now, currently he serves as senior vice president, supply chain and chief procurement officer for the organization. Now, when not moving mountains at Duke Energy, our guest is involved in a wide variety of leadership and volunteer roles.

 

Scott Luton (02:15):

Check this out. He currently serves on the board of directors at Home Trust Bank. He’s a board member and former president of Communities in Schools. He’s a member of the Alumni Committee on Racial and Ethnic Diversity at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. And it gets better, he served as a youth basketball coach, a church teacher, even a youth mentor. I tell you he must have a couple of clones out there making this happen.

 

Kevin L. Jackson (02:36):

Impressive. Yes.

 

Scott Luton (02:38):

And with results, our guest has gotten recognition and awards for his work across industry, including being recognized with the prestigious 2023 Distinguished Service Medal from UNC as well. So, we are pleased to welcome Dwight Jacobs, senior vice president, supply chain and chief procurement officer with Duke Energy. Dwight, how you doing?

Dwight Jacobs (03:00):

I’m doing great, Scott, Kevin. Good to see you both. Thanks for having me.

Scott Luton (03:04):

Great to see you. Kevin, we’ve been looking forward to this conversation, huh?

Kevin L. Jackson (03:07):

Oh, no. Absolutely. I mean, energy. I need energy all the time. So, I’m ready for this one.

Dwight Jacobs (03:13):

Energy we have. Energy we have.

Scott Luton (03:17):

That’s right. Plenty of supply, which is good. All right. So, let’s start with a little fun warmup question here. Something caught my eye as I was doing my homework today, Dwight, and you are a fellow South Carolinian. At least, you grew up in Orangeburg, South Carolina, a.k.a. the Garden City. Give us an anecdote about what it was like to grow up in Orangeburg.

Dwight Jacobs (03:33):

Yes, I was born there. We lived there for most of our childhood. You can think of the pretty azaleas at Edisto. You can think about the catfish on the Santee. But I would offer, Scott, that Duke’s barbecue is a staple in the South. If you haven’t been to Duke’s barbecue — and in the South, you got to remember that barbecue is a noun, not a verb, OK. It’s not a verb. It’s not what you go do. It’s eating that full pork. I would just highlight Duke’s barbecue.

Scott Luton (04:04):

Dwight, hey, we might be second cousins. That is certainly one of my passions. And Kevin, you and I have talked about barbecue and all kinds of good food quite a bit. How about Duke’s barbecue? You want to come down and help us eat a plate, Kevin?

Kevin L. Jackson (04:16):

Yes, yes. Absolutely. You know, you always got that southern, eastern, Midwestern, Texan battle —

Dwight Jacobs (04:22):

Yes, this is mustard-base, Kevin. Mustard-base.

Kevin L. Jackson (04:23):

Mustard-base, yes.

Dwight Jacobs (04:26):

That’s right, yes.

Scott Luton (04:27):

Hey, mustard only goes on hot dogs and mustard only goes in our barbecue sauce. And that’s — that is how it should be. But hey, Kevin and Dwight, we’ll have to break bread over a plate of good barbecue at some point soon. I want to ask you something else before we get into the topic at hand today. As I mentioned, we’ve been spying on you a little bit, Dwight, and doing our homework a bit. And we understand that you’re a real passionate student of leadership.

 

Scott Luton (04:49):

Now, you became the chief procurement officer of Duke Energy after about 20 years in finance and in the middle of the pandemic. And you’re now leading one of the most crucial areas of the company, which like many has been facing unprecedented challenges, but finding a ton of success. Now, we hear you’ve developed a proven, been there done approach. One that you like to call your pillars to success approach. What is that?

Dwight Jacobs (05:15):

Well, our pillars are founded on the fact that we believe in servant leadership. And that no matter the technology, and we believe in technology, no matter the decade or century we’re in for that matter, that it’s still about people.

 

Kevin L. Jackson (05:31):

Yes.

 

Dwight Jacobs (05:31):

And a servant leadership model that while I might be the boss, I don’t have all the solutions, right? And if I’m not approachable, if I’m not investing in our team, we’re not going to be successful. So, whether it’s working remote or not working remote, whether it’s A.I. or not A.I., our model is based on a thousand people that I get to work with every day.

Scott Luton (05:53):

Oh, Kevin, that is music to my ears. Your thoughts, Kevin?

Kevin L. Jackson (05:57):

It’s always about the people. I can’t get anything done. I love you, Dwight. Thank you.

Dwight Jacobs (06:04):

Well, we just met. Som that’s a good start.

Scott Luton (06:07):

Well, also, as much as Kevin and I are very passionate talking about the human factor, despite this incredible technology age we live in, I don’t want to sleep on that first point you mentioned, which is servant leadership, right? And especially for folks and leaders that really embrace it and put it into action. Those are some of the best people I’ve ever worked for and with in my career, Dwight, the power of servant leadership, huh?

Dwight Jacobs (06:28):

I tell you, I’m on a journey. I have not perfected it. So, I don’t want you to think anything other than that, but it puts the crew first. And sometimes it’s hard to put the crew in front of the mission because we’re all paid to do a mission, but we’re not going to be able to get that mission done if the crew’s not bought in. So, I think it has a business logic to it and I think it also resonates with my personal values, and so that allows me to be pretty comfortable operating this way.

Scott Luton (06:55):

Oh, yes.

 

Scott Luton (06:56):

Yes, excellent point.

Kevin L. Jackson (06:57):

It’s always important for the crew to know their place in the mission, where they are contributing and why they are important. And the leader’s job is to, you know, embed that into every day, what they do every day.

Scott Luton (07:13):

Excellent point. Do it with the people is one of my favorite phrases, instead of doing it to the people, which is kind of that more traditional archaic view. So, Dwight and Kevin, we’re off to the races here. We’re not wasting any time. Dwight, man, I wish we had a couple more hours with you here today.

 

Scott Luton (07:27):

Let’s get it to the, you know, the topic at hand. I think a lot of folks when they hear the big name of Duke Energy, they may make some assumptions about the organization and whatnot. Let’s level set a little bit. Tell us a little bit more about Duke Energy and what might surprise folks about the organization.

Dwight Jacobs (07:40):

Well, we are a very large group of utilities serving 10 million families and businesses in the Midwest and Southeast United States. We have gas and electric service. We’re publicly traded a $70 billion market capitalization. And when I joined the company, I thought I was joining a sleepy utility. How hard can that be?

Kevin L. Jackson (08:02):

Glad you know that, yes.

Dwight Jacobs (08:03):

But I tell you what, the two decades we’ve been rolling along. There’s been lots of changes. We’re heavily regulated as you might imagine. And this clean energy transformation that we’re on is a big deal. And it aligns with the policies of our policymakers as well as the interests of our customers. So, it’s been fun and Duke Energy’s been much more dynamic than I ever imagined. And we have a really important mission to power the lives of our communities, and that’s something that helps you jump out of bed in the morning.

Scott Luton (08:35):

Agreed. Kevin, 10 million families and businesses rely on Duke Energy out there. How about that?

Kevin L. Jackson (08:41):

That’s a huge responsibility, and I know it weighs on your shoulder, but it sounds like you really enjoy what you’re doing. You enjoy delivering that energy.

Dwight Jacobs (08:51):

We do get feedback. We get all kinds of course, but we do get feedback. We do get feedback and we’re integral to the people, whether it’s a hospital, a school, a church, a business, we’re integral and it matters. We even had a story on our communication portal about a father who missed his own daughter’s wedding because he was hanging wire in a hurricane.

 

Dwight Jacobs (09:14):

So, when you think about those crews and a hurricane and getting lights back on, you’re saying it’s been two hours. There are a lot of sacrifices going on by my teammates. Now, I’m not doing that. I’m not technically qualified to do some of that work, but we have great men and women that do that, and it really is a passion for them.

Kevin L. Jackson (09:34):

Oh, that’s a focus on mission for sure.

 

Scott Luton (09:36):

Yes, and the crew and the people that make it happen. I love that. And of course, at the beginning of your response there, Dwight, you talked about clean energy because that is all — it’s in demand where — no matter where you go. Investors, customers, business leaders, you name it. And we’re going to touch more on clean energy and that movement in just a second.

 

Scott Luton (09:54):

All right. So, you know, we’re big supply chain nerds around here. Love the supply chain management craft and the people that make it happen. And I bet a lot of folks are curious about the supply chain organization at Duke Energy. Can you tell us a little about that and your role?

Dwight Jacobs (10:08):

Sure. And you’re right, it’s not the same, maybe the same words, but it’s done differently among industries, among companies. But for us, I have a thousand folks that I get to work with every day, and they do things from warehousing and trucking and logistics, moving material that we receive from vendors onto sites where we’re building plants and substations and maintaining the grid that serves the 10 million families and businesses I referenced earlier. But also have sourcing and procurement where you buy $16 billion worth of stuff last year of labor contractors as well as material.

 

Dwight Jacobs (10:48):

So, we’ve got to do that. We’ve got to do it in a price conscious way because that’s what our customers expect, and they should expect that. We are focused on supplier diversity and building a robust supply chain that has options for vendors to make sure that we can maintain resiliency because that’s something that we learned in the pandemic. That it’s important to have the material and the labor you need because life does happen, and the pandemic was a big lesson for all of us in this industry.

Scott Luton (11:16):

Yes, no doubt. Before I come to Kevin for commentary, your role. So, you’re overseeing a lot of different aspects of a very holistic approach, what I’m hearing to supply chain there at Duke Energy. Anything else about your role that might — you know, when folks hear chief procurement officer or when they see, you know, senior vice president supply chain, there’s all kinds of assumptions folks will make. Is there anything about your role that’s really unique from other organizations?

Dwight Jacobs (11:41):

Yes, Scott, as you referenced, I have trained in finance. I’m a certified public accountant by trade and schooling. And I would say supply chain, in some ways, is a cousin to finance in that the money matters, right? The money matters. It’s not the only thing that matters, but it matters. So, I have operations. I have the commercial valuation that can impact our customers in large ways. So, it’s a nice seat to be in and we get to enjoy and get a new challenge every day.

Scott Luton (12:10):

Oh, I bet. Demanding no doubt. Now, Kevin, two quick things, and once you get your comment there. First off, $16 billion, how would you like to have to oversee and manage $16 billion in spending as he mentioned last year?

Kevin L. Jackson (12:22):

A big wallet.

Scott Luton (12:24):

What’s that?

Kevin L. Jackson (12:25):

It’s a big wallet.

Scott Luton (12:26):

Big wallet. It was like a Costanza wallet. I remember that episode where he said — the other thing that he pointed out, and this has been something that we’ve been talking about for years. The incredible combination of supply chain expertise and finance leadership and expertise. Man, when you get folks that really understand that one two punch, that’s when you can really move mountains, especially in this modern environment. Kevin, your thoughts on what we heard there about the supply chain organization?

Kevin L. Jackson (12:54):

Well, one thing that, sort of, catches my eye when I’m thinking about different industries is that in energy, you really have to focus on local. You can’t, you know, outsource the linemen from Philippines to come fix the, you know, the electric grid When you’re in an emergency. You have to be broad as a large, very large organization, but you have to have local contacts, local roots. You have to be part of the local community because they depend upon you and you have to support them.

 

Kevin L. Jackson (13:30):

So, I mean, when you’re running a supply mesh, like I like to say, it’s really critical for the — have that network, have those contacts, and really to be part of the local community.

 

Scott Luton (013:43):

Well said, Kevin.

Dwight Jacobs (13:43):

Yes, there’s no doubt about that. No doubt about that. You know, you mentioned I’m a small town guy. We’re made up of lots of small towns. We have some larger cities, but the local communities matter. We reflect to them. We support them. It’s an ecosystem that we have to coexist in. We can’t do very many things unilaterally whether it take stakeholders and engagement, our employees, our owners, and our employees, our customers. And so, it is a community.

Scott Luton (14:10):

That is an interesting dynamic. And I’m going to ask you one more quick question about what makes you all unique, especially supply chain management unique in the energy industry. But one quick follow up. I love you all’s comment around focusing locally, being in the community. I know Duke Energy does a ton of what we’d like to call giving forward. You’re active in a variety of different nonprofit initiatives and noble missions.

 

Scott Luton (14:31):

We’re talking about this term earlier this week called — we got, I think, glocally [phonetic], right? We got one foot in our local communities and taking care of our local people and team members and customers, you name it. And then we’re part, of course, in global supply chain of a whole global community as well. So, I love this term, glocally [phonetic], and I’m going to blatantly steal it from our guests from a couple of days ago. Dwight, how’s that sound to you, glocally [phonetic]?

Dwight Jacobs (14:53):

Yes, what that means to me is it’s going to take everybody, when we think about a clean energy transformation, and we’re one player in that. But over 10 years, we plan to spend $175 billion to serve customers, to update the grid, to shift from fossil fuels to more renewable energy. And there’s not a single large company that can do that.

 

Dwight Jacobs (15:19):

So, we need it all. We need global and we need local. We want to support the communities that we’re in, but they can’t do it all either. So, to me it means it’s going to take a village, like, a lot of good things, and that is no different here at Duke.

Scott Luton (15:32):

Love that.

Kevin L. Jackson (15:33):

It sounds like a big focus on sustainability, I like that.

Scott Luton (15:37):

Well, Kevin, it’s like you’re reading my mind. That’s where we’re going next. You and Dwight, you all have some clairvoyant powers. I just want to touch on one more thing, though. I love where you wrapped your response there, Dwight. And a former guest a few months back said, supply chain is the ultimate team sport. And now that’s another worldview that I love because it kind of touches on what you’re saying. It does take a village, for sure.

 

Scott Luton (15:58):

Especially when we get into sustainability and driving real change there, right? Because it is in demand. Expectations have changed dramatically, which you were referencing earlier. What are some of the cool things that Duke Energy is doing when it comes to sustainability, Dwight?

Dwight Jacobs (16:11):

Well, our strategy that we’re on a journey to execute is to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050. And net zero methane emissions because we have a gas set of utilities as well as electric by 2030. And so, that is no small task. And as I said, we have engaged with our regulators, with our customers, with our owners and others, that this is what is a good use of company capital.

 

Dwight Jacobs (16:40):

So, to do that, we’re relying on technologies to get about 70% of that done. But we realized that between now and 2050, something’s going to get invented that doesn’t exist today, and we’re counting on that because we’re taking a leap of faith. We do have plans in place, but we do need — and we’re investing in innovation. We have an innovation center in Mount Holly which is near Charlotte where I’m sitting, where they develop things like drones that can detect methane emissions. And instead of rolling out a truck and people in labor, we can fly around and use technology. So, we are embracing that in a number of ways.

Scott Luton (17:20):

  1. Kevin, that’s pretty cool stuff. Anything dealing with drones these days, I find fascinating, especially more and more practical applications in different sectors. Kevin, respond to that if you would.

Kevin L. Jackson (17:30):

Yes, I really like the way you position that. I mean, you can leverage advanced technology like drones to do things like line inspections, to see where failures are and get the power back online much faster. And by doing that, you can actually use energy more efficiently. And the embracing the technology and using it to enhance your course towards net zero is commendable. I really like that.

Scott Luton (18:00):

Yes, agreed.

Dwight Jacobs (18:01):

Appreciate that.

Scott Luton (18:03):

And you know, we’re going to get some more Dwight’s expertise on how we can accelerate our drive to net zero. But, you know, the other thing as you were sharing your response there, Kevin, that came to my mind is also we’ve got to educate the market and educate consumers and customers of how to be better stewards of energy, especially with the — talk about demand. Demand on the grid that Dwight was talking about. And even as they invest in expand in that grid, all of us, as consumers and users of power and energy of all sorts, that can probably use it a lot better, right?

Kevin L. Jackson (18:33):

Yes, yes. Absolutely. And I think we saw that down in Texas when they had the winter storm, and the ice storm took the grid offline and it knocked society back into the 1800 or 1700 when they didn’t have power. And that’s when people realized how important it is to husband and take care of your energy needs and to know that it’s not just you. You’re sharing this energy with everyone.

Scott Luton (19:02):

Excellent point, Kevin. All right. So, let’s talk a little bit more about how we can accelerate, and we’re going to break this up into two different questions, Dwight. You’re referencing emissions reductions is one — you know, one of the ways that we can accelerate and how energy companies are accelerating to net zero. And you shared that 2050 and 2030 as you all’s target years for how you’re doing it.

 

Scott Luton (19:22):

What other steps would you point to as either things Duke Energy is doing or other energy companies are doing to, again, achieve those net zero commitments through things like emissions reductions, like you referencing grid, decarbonization or even renewable energy optimization? What else comes to mind before we start talking technology?

Dwight Jacobs (19:40):

So, when we talk about our system — I’m going to throw out a few numbers here. I love numbers.

 

Scott Luton (19:45):

Sure.

 

Dwight Jacobs (19:46):

But we have 55 gigawatts of capacity and nine gigawatts of that are renewables, and that’s going to grow three X, the renewables portion. So, we’re going to retire some things as we shift away from fuels that emit carbon to these others. So, we’re investing. When I talk about our capital plan, it’s to invest in those new resources that are more sustainable. That’s a big picture. Even inside a supply chain, we can make a difference. And I’d like to give you a couple examples.

 

Scott Luton (20:18):

Sure.

 

Dwight Jacobs (20:18):

We’ve been recycling and repurposing wood waste. You know, when you think about a pole, you’ve all seen an electric pole with transformers on it —

Scott Luton (20:26):

I’ve climbed up a few, Dwight.

Dwight Jacobs (20:28):

Yes, I bet you have. I bet you have. And those suckers are as long as a tractor trailer and can weigh like four refrigerators, but we’re recycling that and donating them to build barns and fences. We’ve diverted more than 87% of wood waste in ’23, and that’s 111,000 tons of solid waste that we did not go into our landfills. So, that might may not be something that your listeners think about, but those are some of the things that we’re doing. You got the big picture with generation, but the things you can do in a department just like mine.

Scott Luton (21:05):

Dwight, oh man. You know, Kevin, he’s so right. As he finishes answer, he mentioned, you know, these are some things that maybe your listeners don’t think of. I can tell you, I pride myself on the little nuances that make up different sectors. I have never stopped in my entire life as many poles as we passed driving down the road to think about 111,000 tons of how we can recycle all these poles that we lean on across the country for our energy industry. Your thoughts, Kevin?

Kevin L. Jackson (21:31):

Yes, yes. It’s a broad view of sustainability, right? It’s not very narrow. OK. Net zero, everybody’s talking about net zero. OK, fine, fine. Everybody’s talking about carbon capture. OK, fine. But they’re not just looking at carbon, they’re looking at methane also. They’re looking at how to reduce the energy that the energy company uses. They’re looking at leveraging technology to accelerate the route to net zero, and they’re even, you know, increasing their contribution to recycling telephone poles. I love it.

Scott Luton (22:07):

Right. I do too. I do too. Dwight, I appreciate you sharing those numbers. I’m a big number geek as well. And going back to your first, that nine gig of renewable energy power, you’re going to triple that in coming years. That’s awesome to hear. It really is.

 

Scott Luton (22:22):

Let’s shift gears for a minute. Let’s talk about technology. You know, as much as we love the human factor, as much as we love what I’ll call traditional or operational supply chain. Technology, as we all know, is changing everything. It’s playing a bigger role by the day.

 

Scott Luton (22:34):

In your view, Dwight, how could companies, you know, use technologies? And Kevin, you’re my co-pilot, and you know these technologies better than I do. Hyperscale cloud. Of course, artificial intelligence is the golden age of A.I. right now, and digital platforms of all sorts. How can we leverage those to make better data-informed decisions to advance this clean energy transition that you’re describing?

Dwight Jacobs (22:55):

Well, I’ll tell you, we believe that technology will unlock a lot of value. We’re working on getting our processes better because the last thing you want to do is put on hyperspeed a bad process, just make it better. So, there’s got to be a balance, as always, between people process as well as technology. But we do believe in the technology.

 

Dwight Jacobs (23:17):

A couple of examples, you mentioned the cloud. We have to analyze power flow calculations, and what that simply means is where do we put a generation source based on who’s charging their cars with EVs? Who’s got data centers? Who’s just got a bunch of normal residents? And that’s a manual type of effort, but there are technologies to help us speed that up and we’re using it.

 

Dwight Jacobs (23:41):

We have a fleet of vehicles that help move materials and work on restoration of power in storms or move material between locations. We use telematics to make sure that we’re efficient in hauling and backhauling. Just last year, we had 37 backhaul pickups that were reduced our idle time by 65% and prevented 76 tons of greenhouse gas emissions just by using that technology. So, you don’t think of Duke Energy like you think of some of the other technology companies, but we embrace it nonetheless.

Scott Luton (24:18):

You’re changing how we view Duke Energy. I’ll tell you that much, Dwight. Kevin, respond. This is your specialty right here, Kevin. All things technology. What’d you hear there?

Kevin L. Jackson (24:26):

Yes. I heard data, data and data. I’m hearing that their business is being driven by having the right data and behaving to deliver the data to the people at the right time in the right place, no matter where they are, no matter what they’re doing. Business processes they thrive on having the right data and access to the cloud with connected applications is one of the key aspects of having a data driven business. And Duke Energy is definitely data driven.

Scott Luton (25:02):

Yes, excellent. Changing how business has been done. I mean, Duke Energy has been around for quite some time, but changing and not — what’s the proverbial, you know. But we’ve always done it that way. That’s not —

 

Kevin L. Jackson (25:11):

But change is good.

 

Scott Luton (25:12):

— what we’re hearing —

Kevin L. Jackson (25:13):

Yes, they’re embracing change. They’re embracing technology. They’re embracing new ways. I mean, just think about the way they’re changing, which we expect to the mix of energy that they’re delivering to their customers. They are really standing at the forefront when it comes to sustainability and leveraging technology. This is good stuff.

Dwight Jacobs (25:34):

Well, I appreciate that, Kevin. I would say that we want to create as much competitive advantage for our customers as possible. You might think of us as not dealing with competition, but we know there’s disruption happening all over the place, and if we stick our head in the sand, we’re going to get left behind. And so, we’re very conscious of making sure that we have a commercial mindset as we serve our customers.

 

Scott Luton (25:58):

I love that.

Kevin L. Jackson (25:58):

Yes. Dare I say it, Digital Transformer, here?

 

Dwight Jacobs (26:03):

Yes, maybe. Maybe.

Scott Luton (26:05):

No, undoubtedly. Undoubtedly. All right. A lot of good stuff there. Now, quick comment before we start talking procurement, Dwight and Kevin. Dwight, you brought up barbecue on the front end of our conversation. So, I know you’re from South Carolina and I bet Krispy Kreme donuts. So, if we have any ideas here about automating that delicious process that produces these delicious donuts, hey, I’m all ears. So — because I can only imagine all the Krispy Kreme.

Dwight Jacobs (26:31):

Local company, North Carolina Company near Charlotte —

 

Scott Luton (26:34):

That’s right?

 

Dwight Jacobs (26:36):

We power that glaze as it wanders over that rye dough. So, yes.

Scott Luton (26:41):

Oh, it’s so good. When the light is on —

 

Dwight Jacobs (26:43):

Not that I’ve ever had one.

 

Scott Luton (26:43):

— and they’re hot and fresh —

Dwight Jacobs (26:44):

I don’t want to give you that impression.

Kevin L. Jackson (26:46):

Oh, yes. No, no, no, no.

Scott Luton (26:49):

All right. So, barbecue and Krispy Kreme, when we connect —

 

Kevin L. Jackson (26:52):

They go together.

 

Scott Luton (26:52):

— in person. A lot of good stuff. That’s right. Yes. We’re completely messing with my diet, but yes, they’re good together.

 

Scott Luton (26:58):

All right. So, let’s talk about procurement with the chief procurement officer amongst other things at Duke Energy. Because much like supply chain, I would argue, procurement is really cool now. It’s a whole new era. And leading organizations are truly finding new ways to bring procurement expertise into boardrooms, business strategies and operational execution that deliver those powerful outcomes, no pun intended.

 

Scott Luton (27:20):

So, Dwight, question for you. What’s one of the biggest lessons that the last few years have taught you or maybe re-emphasize to you about procurement leadership?

Dwight Jacobs (27:29):

What I’ll tell you is reconfirm that we’re part of the lifeblood of any organization. There was a point in time or maybe it became a little sleepy or taken for granted, but with the advent of the pandemic, the world constraints, I would say that we’ve had a wakeup call here to say, hey, we’ve got to get this right. Customers are counting on us to do that.

 

Dwight Jacobs (27:54):

So, not only do you have to live in the day-to-day tactics, but we’re becoming more strategic. What’s coming around the corner? Who saw a pandemic coming? Who saw a war across the ocean from us that can have a ripple effect here on some things that we buy? So, what’s the next thing around the corner? And are you and your team on your toes enough that you can check and adjust?

Scott Luton (28:17):

Yes, well said Dwight. Kevin, you know, as we invest in becoming truly more resilient organizations or supply chains and stronger operations, stronger processes, but also leveraging our teams and modern-day innovative technology. That’s how all we can be more prepared for the disruptions that, you know, Dwight mentioned, and unfortunately, plenty of others around the corner. Your thoughts, Kevin.

Kevin L. Jackson (28:39):

Back in the day when I used to, you know, live my life on an aircraft carrier, you get up on the roof of that thing and you’re trying to go to your airplane, the number one task was to keep your head on the swivel. What did that mean? Always look right to front, back, side. And in today’s business world, you must, especially in procurement, you got to keep your head on the swivel because things change. You want to outsource this or near source that or insource that. Ensure this. I mean — and it’s going to change.

 

Scott Luton (29:10):

Change is constant, and you have to be able to flex with that change and make decisions based upon, you know, data. Not based upon hunches or what you think is happening. You know, making the data driven decisions. And I know as chief procurement officer, that’s what drives you every day, right, Dwight?

Dwight Jacobs (29:29):

Absolutely. We have to make sure that next thing — we can’t predict it. We don’t have a crystal ball. But do you have the talent in place? Do you have the processes in place to make sure that you can move, quickly digest what the environment is? So, you have stocking levels so that if something’s disrupt, these are critical. I can’t get below. So, do you have your critical items identified? So, there’s a lot of things that may have atrophied over time that we’ve been exercising those muscles a lot more lately.

Scott Luton (29:58):

Yes, especially with an organization, a scale that Duke Energy is. I can only imagine how challenging that could be. But the good news is, man, you all are really moving mountains and changing how business is done.

 

Scott Luton (30:09):

Going back to procurement for a second. Kevin, you and I have talked about this a lot. I will say that we were using the word ecosystem long before it became cliche these days because it is. Our listeners, viewers hear the word ecosystem more now than probably they ever have before. Procurement pros, I would argue, play a really big role in building out our ecosystems and making everybody across that more successful.

 

Scott Luton (30:31):

So, Dwight, when I say something like that, one of the things that comes to my mind is supplier development programs, right, which I love to see especially those that are more rooted in action rather than lip service because there’s some of that out there too. For audience members out there that are truly investing in a robust supplier development program, what’s one piece of advice that you’d like to share?

Dwight Jacobs (30:49):

Well, sometimes Duke can be hard to do business with. We’ll accept that sometimes, you know, we have our systems, our processes were heavily regulated. So, you need to engage with us and we with you to make sure that we can get you onboarded in an effective way so that we are not losing time with talking past each other.

 

Dwight Jacobs (31:08):

We have something called Supplier Diversity University, and it’s on June 13th here at Duke, where we educate diverse and other suppliers on how to do business with Duke, and to make sure that we’re building out that resiliency by having more options. Options are always good. And so, we want to have more options to make sure that we are not stuck in a bind. So, I would just suggest any company would follow that leap.

Scott Luton (31:35):

Oh, Dwight, I love that. Kevin, there’s two things. Two of my favorite parts of Dwight’s response there are number one, just keeping it real. It’s not really easy probably to work with many really big organizations. And, you know, Dwight and the team just own that, but better yet, they’re investing in things like the Supplier Diversity University to make it easier and to educate those businesses out there of how they can do good business with Duke Energy. I love that. Kevin, your thoughts?

Kevin L. Jackson (32:02):

Well, you know, in order to deal with change, you have to have diversity. They go together. You need a new world view on things. A new thought patterns to deal with unique changes in your supply mesh, in your procurement ecosystem, and in your overall business. So, a diverse business is good business.

Scott Luton (32:26):

Well said.

Dwight Jacobs (32:26):

Well said.

Scott Luton (32:27):

Study after study shows how diversity can — you know, if you’re not doing it for all the right reasons, at least do it for the bottom line reasons which study after study will show. Supplier Diversity University, what was the date on that again, Dwight?

Dwight Jacobs (32:38):

June 13th.

Scott Luton (32:39):

June 13th. Outstanding.

Kevin L. Jackson (32:41):

We’re going to have to put a link in there in the comments.

Scott Luton (32:44):

That’s right. So, listeners, we’re going to do just that. So, if you’re interested in learning a lot more and taking advantage of these great programs that Dwight and the Duke Energy team are putting together so you can find new smart business opportunities, look in the episode notes.

 

Scott Luton (32:57):

Dwight, I really wish we had a couple more hours with you. I find the energy sector fascinating, and I find speaking with supply chain and procurement leaders in the energy system to be fascinating as well. If folks want to reach out to you, maybe they want to keynote one of their meetings or just compare notes with you on the cool things you are doing at Duke Energy, how can folks connect with you, Dwight?

Dwight Jacobs (33:16):

LinkedIn would be a great way. I’m pretty active on LinkedIn. I enjoy do that. We stay on top of that pretty well. So, I’d be happy to do it that way, Scott.

Scott Luton (33:24):

Wonderful, Dwight. Kevin, before we let Dwight go, what was one of your favorite things that Dwight Jacobs with Duke Energy of the truckload of brilliance that he brought here today out, they’re doing business differently. What’s the one thing was your favorite part?

Kevin L. Jackson (33:37):

This huge gigantic company is focused on the local people, right? They understand the importance of being connected to the towns that really support business and support life and support livelihood. And the fact that power, energy is the lifeblood of just about everything. I really like that understanding of the importance of being local.

Scott Luton (34:08):

Yes, well said. Now, I would just add to that as the whole game is changing and as demands are changing. How Dwight and Duke Energy aren’t just focused on delivering the current need, but they’re focused on changing and evolving so we’ll all be in a better position in the weeks and months and years ahead. So, that —

 

Kevin L. Jackson (34:27):

Vision.

 

Scott Luton (34:27):

— I found to be pretty inspiring. Yes, visionary, that’s right. Big thanks. Dwight Jacobs, senior Vice President, supply chain and Chief Procurement Officer with Duke Energy, thanks so much for being here, Dwight.

Dwight Jacobs (34:36):

Thank you, Scott. Thank you, Kevin. Really enjoyed talking to you.

Kevin L. Jackson (34:39):

Thank you. Thank you.

Scott Luton (34:40):

All right. Kevin, really good stuff there. I got a couple questions though for you before we get out of here, including some of the really cool things that Microsoft is doing out in the energy sector, your thoughts?

Kevin L. Jackson (34:50):

Yes. You know, we talked a bit about sustainability, and Microsoft actually has the Microsoft Cloud for sustainability. This is really a set of environmental, social, and governance capabilities that allows the partners and enabling organizations to accelerate sustainability progress and their business growth using data and A.I.

 

Kevin L. Jackson (35:16):

You know, we talked also about going to net zero. So, the sustainability Cloud can track CO2 and greenhouse gas emissions across the energy value chain. They use connected devices and integrated A.I. and machine learning to uncover opportunities, trends and insights to better balance, energy demands and supply in real time. You know, we were talking about a data-driven business, and the Cloud gives you that data on point when you need it, where you need it. It enables this co-innovation so that you can speed your deployment and enable brand new business models to cover both the physical and digital value chains. And Duke Energy really seems to be a poster child for this.

Scott Luton (36:11):

Yes, well said. And empowering the human factor on your team to change how business has done. It’s one of the things I heard you, kind of, implied there. So — all right. A lot of good stuff. Let’s make sure folks know how to connect with you, Kevin L. Jackson, and of course, your hit series Digital Transformers. How can folks connect with you?

Kevin L. Jackson (36:30):

You know, Digital Transformers is really expanding, man. There are so many new clients, new topics, new customers, partnerships. So, the channel is really, you know, busting out all over the place. You can always catch me on LinkedIn and on supplychainnow.com and stay tuned for new places where you can see and catch Digital Transformers episodes.

Scott Luton (36:55):

Yes, stay tuned. Busting out folks. Busting out. Hey Kevin, always a pleasure. Hey, big thanks to all of our listeners out there and viewers across the globe. You all are why we do this. Big thanks to Dwight Jacobs with Duke Energy. Of course, shout out to Maddie over there. Big thanks to our Cloud partners over at Microsoft that helps us bring wonderful stories and leaders like this one to our global audience. Kevin, always a pleasure —

 

Kevin L. Jackson (37:16):

Thank you.

 

Scott Luton (37:17):

— to bust out and knock out these episodes with you.

Kevin L. Jackson (37:19):

This is fun.

Scott Luton (37:20):

Hey, but to our listeners, hey, the onus is on you now, right? Hopefully you’ve enjoyed this episode and the conversation and the ideas and the actions, right, as Dwight was laying out what they’re doing at Duke Energy. But take one thing that Dwight mentioned or Kevin mentioned, put it into action. Change how business is done. Your team is craving it. They’re waiting for it, right? They want to be successful. Let’s empower them to be more successful, more easily every single day. Deeds not words. With all that said, Scott Luton here, challenging all of our listeners to do good, give forward and be the change that’s needed, and we’ll see you next time right back here at Supply Chain Now. Thanks everybody.

Intro/Outro (37:57):

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

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Featured Guests

Dwight Jacobs serves as senior vice president, supply chain and chief procurement officer for Duke Energy. In this role, he is responsible for the sourcing and supply chain functions for the enterprise’s operations. He assumed this current position in May 2021. Jacobs joined Duke Energy in 2002 and has served in several key leadership roles. Most recently, he served as senior vice president, chief accounting officer, tax and controller for Duke Energy, where he oversaw finance transformation, accounting, tax, financial reporting and internal controls. Prior to that, he served as senior vice president of financial planning and analysis with responsibility for the company’s business and financial planning functions, including oversight of the financial forecast. He also managed the design of policies, processes and systems that support the finance function. He has served as Duke Energy’s chief risk officer and led a revamping of the company’s enterprise risk management practices and policies. Jacobs also led the regulatory activity, including rate cases in six states and 11 jurisdictions, as vice president of rates and regulatory strategy for Duke Energy. Before joining the company, Jacobs was an audit and business advisory partner with Arthur Andersen in Washington, D.C., where he started his career in 1988. The Orangeburg, S.C., native earned a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC). He is a graduate of the Advanced Management Program at the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. He completed the Advanced Risk Management Program at Loyola University Chicago’s Quinlan School of Business. He is also a certified public accountant. Jacobs currently serves on the board of directors of HomeTrust Bank. He is a board member and former president of Communities in Schools. He served on the board of visitors for UNC’s Children’s Hospital, and he is a member of UNC’s Alumni Committee on Racial and Ethnic Diversity. Jacobs received the 2023 Distinguished Service Medal from UNC. He has been a youth basketball coach, a teacher at Weddington United Methodist Church and a youth mentor. Jacobs is a Lumbee Indian of North Carolina. He is married to the former Moira Farrell of Charlotte, N.C., and they have a daughter and a son. Connect with Dwight on LinkedIn.

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Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

Kevin L. Jackson

Host, Digital Transformers

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

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

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

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

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

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Demo Perez

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

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

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Host, Supply Chain Now

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Nick Roemer

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Tandreia Bellamy

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

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

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

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

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Marty Parker

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

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

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Marketing Coordinator

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

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Jake Barr

Host

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

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Marcia Williams

Host

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

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Constantine Limberakis

Host

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

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Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

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

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

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Greg White

Principal & Host

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

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

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Chris Barnes

Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain is Boring

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

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

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Tyler Ward

Director of Sales

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

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

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

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Kevin L. Jackson

Host of Digital Transformers

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

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Enrique Alvarez

Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español

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

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

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Kelly Barner

Host of Dial P for Procurement

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

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Mary Kate Soliva

Host, Veteran Voices

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

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Amanda Luton

Vice President, Production

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

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Clay Phillips

Business Development Manager

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

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Trisha Cordes

Administrative Assistant

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

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Chantel King

Social Media Manager

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

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

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

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Lori Sofian

Marketing Coordinator

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

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Katherine Hintz

Creative Manager & Executive Producer

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

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Mary Kate Love

Chief of Staff & Host

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

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

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Joshua Miranda

Marketing Specialist

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