Logistics Executive Lecture Series

The Center for Logistics & Supply Chain Management sponsors the Logistics Executive Lecturer Series which promotes excellence in student-centered education. These lecture sessions expose students, faculty, and researchers to senior industry leaders. Students directly interact with senior executives and gain first-hand knowledge regarding the challenges they face and the leadership strategies being deployed by participating firms.

Important information for all events

Students must RSVP online to attend all events. Students will receive an email confirmation to the email address provided on the RSVP form. The class number you enter on the RSVP form will be the class for which you receive attendance credit. To change the class number for an RSVP’d event simply click ‘edit’ in the event you have registered for. The RSVP system will allow registrations until capacity in the classroom has been met (BLB 180 = 200). Please RSVP early in the semester as events fill up very quickly! If you have submitted an RSVP and will not be able to attend, please cancel no later than Thursday at 5:00pm prior to the event on Friday to allow another student the opportunity to attend. To cancel an RSVP simply click ‘delete’ in the event you have registered for. Thank you for your assistance with this format.

Please bring your student ID for entry to logistics events. You will swipe your student ID upon entry and exit from the classroom to receive attendance credit. Please arrive early in order to access the card swipe system and be seated so we may start the events on time.

Upcoming Events

Previous Events

  • Friday, April 3rd - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
    BLB 180
    Dave Akers

    President, Mexico – C.R. England

    Dave Akers is the President of the México Division of C.R. England, Inc., a Salt Lake City–based international transportation services provider and the world’s largest refrigerated trucking company. C.R. England actively operates throughout the United States, Mexico, and Canada. C.R. England serves notable companies such as Tyson, Cargill, Hershey, Walmart, Kraft, Nestle, and Conagra Brands. Mr. Akers has worked in cross-border trucking and logistics since 1994. Before joining C.R. England in 2009, Mr. Akers was Associate Vice President of Mexico Operations at Werner Enterprises from 2002 to 2009. Prior to that, Mr. Akers served as Director of Operations for Celadon Trucking’s CEL-MEX division and was based in Mexico City, Mexico. In his current role at C.R. England, Mr. Akers plays an active role in the design and implementation of various transportation and logistics products serving customers located throughout North America. He also frequently coordinates with local, state, and federal law enforcement on supply-chain security initiatives (C-TPAT, DEA, U.S. CBP) to provide industry perspective to these organizations. Mr. Akers is a native of Indianapolis, Indiana and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics from Purdue University and a Master of Business Administration degree from Texas A&M International University. Mr. Akers is bilingual in English and Spanish. Mr. Akers and his wife, Araceli, currently reside in Laredo, Texas. In his free time, Mr. Akers is active in his church and enjoys hiking, traveling, and agility training his German Shepherd Dog, Lucian von der Akers.

  • Friday, March 27th - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
    BLB 180
    Igor Rikalo

    Chief Operating Officer – o9 Solutions, Inc.

    Igor Rikalo's career has focused on unlocking business value for enterprises via improved planning and execution of plans. He has helped numerous manufacturers and retailers implement new processes to boost agility, reduce planning cycle times and improve top and bottom-line results as outcome.

    As Chief Operating Officer of o9 Solutions, Igor is responsible for daily operations of company across all regions and for scaling its business by working alongside some of the world’s smartest minds.

    Prior to this, Igor performed variety of customer facing roles at i2 Technologies. i2 is often cited as the thought leader in supply chain management and credited with creating more value for clients via supply chain planning than any other solution provider.

    Igor's educational background include graduate degrees in Electrical Engineering and Master of Business Administration from Texas A&M University.

  • Friday, March 6th - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
    BLB 180
    Michelle Wright

    Program Manager | Career Coach | Trainer | Certified Supply Chain Professional | Agilist

    Download Presentation Slides

    Michelle Reilly Wright graduated from Penn State in 1975 with a BS in Marketing and again in 1982 with an MBA in Management Information Systems. Michelle has many years of Supply Chain Management technology experience. She started her career in 1982 as a member of DuPont’s Information Systems Department Field Program. Since then, Michelle has worked for a variety of companies in technology-related positions. She spent 4 years at Sealand Services managing their customer EDI team followed by 11 years at Nokia with leadership assignments in EDI, eCommerce, supplier website development and supply chain technology. In 2018 Michelle worked for Elemica, a premier supply chain integration company, where utilized a Supply Chain Operating Network to gather client's B2B transaction data for use in predictive analysis to deliver rapid responses to real-time market events.

    Since 2013, Michelle has volunteered as a Career Success Coach for Supply Chain Management jobseekers. She has served on the APICS North Texas board since 2018 where she sits on the Education committee. In 2019 she helped out with the logistics classes at Garland ISD’s Career Technology Center and spent time in the fall attending college fairs at many DFW Metroplex high schools. In August 2019, she passed the certification exam to become a Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP). She gained her APICS Train the Trainer certificate in October 2019. In February 2020, she will begin to teach the APICS CSCP course.

    Michelle and her husband live on a horse farm in Argyle, Texas. They enjoy college football and training dogs, cats and horses.

  • Friday, February 28th - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
    BLB 180
    Jim Nichol

    Executive Vice President – American Diamond Logistics

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    Jim Nichol has been working as the Executive Vice President at American Diamond Logistics in Roanoke, TX for five years. He has been working in Transportation and Supply Chain Management for over 20 years. Jim started his logistics career on the distribution center side as a Director with Best Buy and Home Depot. Jim also spent 10 years with Dart Transit Company, a large asset based trucking outfit, as a Director of Sales and Operations.

  • Friday, February 21st - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
    BLB 180
    LTC James Marques

    Logistics Officer, Simulations & Planning – 84th Training Command

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    LTC James Marques is currently a Simulations Officer in the Training Aviation Brigade stationed in Fort Hood, TX. He has over 34 years of combined commissioned and enlisted service. James also maintains civilian engineering jobs and currently works with Boston Professionals in Massachusetts. He is a member of two professional associations, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. His interests include Ancient Honorable & Field Artillery Unit, VFW/American Legion, UMass Lowell-Board of Engineering Technology, Sterling Men’s Groups, The Rockingham Church, Landmark Education, and Father’s Rights.

  • Friday, February 7th - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
    BLB 180
    Adrian Barbera

    Regional Vice President – Schneider

    Adrian Barbera is currently the Regional Vice President of the Schneider Transportation Management Dallas Office leading a team of Sales and Operations personnel. Now responsible for managing a customer and carrier portfolio, Profit/Loss management, and technological advancement of the business, he started in 2006 as a Sales Account Executive in the Chicago Logistics Hub and has held roles facing customers, carriers and leading people. Adrian graduated from Eastern Michigan University with a B.S. and a M.S. in Communications and was a 4-year letterman in Football. He has a 5 year old daughter, loves to travel, and currently donates his time monthly with the Dallas Stewpot and Big Brothers/Big Sisters

  • Friday, January 31st - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
    BLB 180
    Steve Boecking

    Principal, Steve Boecking Consulting, LLC

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    Steve Boecking serves as Principal of Steve Boecking Consulting, LLC specializing in evaluation and activation of US Foreign-Trade Zones (FTZ) for importers, exporters, and FTZ Grantees.

    He is the former COO of Shoppa’s Material Handling, Inc., one of the nation’s largest Toyota material handling dealerships. For almost 20 years, Boecking served as Vice President of Supply Chain Infrastructure and Foreign-Trade Zones at Hillwood Properties, developer of the 18,000-acre AllianceTexas development in north Fort Worth.

    Boecking has been a featured speaker on Foreign-Trade Zones, Global Supply Chains, and Workforce Development at several regional and national conferences such as the National Association of Foreign Trade Zones (NAFTZ), the Council of Supply Chain Management (CSCMP), The Journal of Commerce (JOC), the National Defense Transportation League (NDTL), the Transportation Club of DFW (TCDFW), and more. Boecking has also lectured at the University of Oklahoma, Texas Christian University, University of North Texas, Southern Methodist University, and the University of Texas at Arlington.