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ProMat 2009 Keynote: Building The Workforce of the Future

Monday, January 5, 2009

9:00 - 10:00 am on Tuesday, January 13

Even if you have never used the term “disruptive demographics” you will soon be living it.

The world’s labor force is changing. Baby Boomers are beginning to retire, setting the stage for major shifts in workplace demographics including a declining working population through 2025. Skill sets are rapidly changing. Life/Work balance is taking on new meaning. And there is often a huge disconnect between people already in the workforce and those just entering it. That is disruptive demographics.

Will the next generation be ready to step into their roles? How will these roles change? The implications for manufacturing and the supply chain are far-reaching. Get an in-depth look at these changes and how companies like yours can prepare for them during this important session including:

  • How worker shortages in key areas such as manufacturing, engineering and distribution will impact your bottom line
  • How to attract and retain the next generation of workers who have different motivations and reward structures
  • How to adapt to take advantage of new competitive opportunities created by the aging workforce and disruptive demographics

The ProMat Keynote will consist of a panel of five experts at the forefront of this important issue and moderated by renowned business journalist Forrest Sawyer. They will provide real-world perspective, detail how the workforce is changing and offer practical ideas that will help you adapt to this change as you build your workforce of the future.

ProMat Keynote Moderator: Forrest Sawyer
Forrest Sawyer is one of America's most respected television journalists, with over 24 years of experience reporting from around the world. He is a veteran of ABC, CBS, and MSNBC. He has anchored the ABC magazine programs Day One and Turning Point, as well as World News Sunday, and Good Morning America. For a decade Forrest Sawyer was the primary replacement anchor on ABC's Nightline.

ProMat 2009 Keynote Panel

Mr. Rob Hoffman
Director of Business Development
Chicago Workforce Board

Rob Hoffman has been the Director of Business Development at the Chicago Workforce Board since April 2007. He is charged with creating a comprehensive training regime for the Transportation, Distribution and Logistics sector in Chicago, the nation’s distribution hub. He is engaged in developing entry level training, high school preparation, development of a comprehensive system of modular “incumbent” training, as well as developing curricula for more specialized associate and 4 year degrees.

In April 2008, Rob became, concurrently, Director of Chicago LEADS, a mayoral initiative to greatly improve the focus of the publicly-funded, pre-employment preparation and recruitment systems. In partnership with business, LEADS will strive to shape the creation of a new, integrated education, training and recruitment network that is responsive to the current and future demand for known critical skilled labor in the Logistics industries.
From 2000-2007, Rob was a founding member of World Business Chicago, the region’s award winning, not for profit economic development agency. His specialization was in the attraction and retention of distribution, air, land and water transportation as well as manufacturing industries.

Rob is also active in promoting the need to not only maintain the existing transportation infrastructure, but also expand it to meet the demand that will arise as the nation’s population grows and world trade doubles in the next 20 years. He is a member of Chicago’s Business Leaders for Transport, the Intermodal Task Force, Midwest Regional Transport Planning Group and advises the City of Chicago and State of Illinois on freight related economic trends.

Before joining World Business Chicago, Rob led the Industrial Marketing and Sales practice at the Chicago Manufacturing Center (CMC), a consulting organization that concentrates on assisting small and mid-size manufacturers in the six county area around Chicago.

Prior to CMC, Rob was a career diplomat with the British Foreign Service for 25 years where he served in 17 different countries. He specialized in trade matters, assisting British firms to export and/or invest in the local market. For the last eight years of his diplomatic career, he served in Chicago and Miami where he focused on encouraging US firms to expand their presence in Europe by investing in operations in Britain.

Sharon Carrell, SPHR
McKesson Corporation
Director, Sales and Operations Management Development Programs
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Sharon Carrell has been with McKesson for over eight years and in her current position is responsible for three management development programs. Two are operations programs; one recruits directly from college campuses and the third develops high potential internal operations employees. The third program recruits college seniors from universities that offer a sales major or certificate and trains the students to become hospital or retail sales managers. Carrell also began the first summer intern program for operations in McKesson Pharmaceutical.

Before joining McKesson, Carrell was the Director of Human Resources for TTI, Inc., a global leading distributor of passive electronic electronics. She was responsible for starting the first Human Resources Department at TTI, Inc.

She has achieved her Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) through the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).

Bruce Mantz
Executive Vice President
Automated Distribution Systems, LP

Bruce Mantz has an extensive background in all facets of retail distribution. Specifically, Mr. Mantz possesses detailed knowledge of operations, plant design and construction to automated material handling environments.

Some of his accomplishments include the responsibility for the design and renovation, between 1984 and 1989 of five Macy’s/Bamberger’s distribution centers. During this time he held titles which included Senior Operations Manager and Fashion Center Manager.

Subsequent to his career at Macy’s, Bruce was responsible for the project management, design and implementation of a 700,000 sq. ft. state-of-the-art distribution facility for Burlington Coat Factory. He then moved on to Glitterwrap where he successfully consolidated the company’s manufacturing, distribution and corporate operations. Bruce directed the start-up operations of all the aforementioned facilities as well as lowered costs and established more efficient operational procedures for each of his employers.

In 1994, Bruce began an association with Automated Distribution Systems that started with the design and development of the company’s systems and equipment. His role continued into responsibility for the operations of the plant, where he has been able to utilize his management and operational skills developed throughout his career to run the ADS facilities. In 2005, ADS expanded its existing operation by acquiring a 640,000 sq. ft. fully automated facility in Gaffney, SC. Bruce has assembled a full team of senior managers and department heads to assist him in the operations of every phase of the ADS multi-facility network.

Josh Dennie
Production Control Manager
Optimax Systems, Inc.

Josh Dennie is a 2006 graduate from Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT), obtaining his BS/MS degrees in Industrial & Systems Engineering. Through RIT’s co-op program,

Josh has enjoyed a diverse work experience, working in several different industries, across the country. He has been employed by Optimax Systems, General Mills, and Walt Disney World, spending time on projects that include prioritization scheduling for a job shop, effective utilization of waste cereal, and the dynamics of attendance patterns.

Currently, Josh is employed as Production Control Manager at Optimax Systems, located outside of Rochester, NY. Optimax is a world-wide leading provider of high precision optical components. Josh’s responsibilities at Optimax include overseeing raw material inventory and transportation, process engineering, manufacturing scheduling, and discrepant material operations.

Kim Absil
Delivery Unit General Manager
Sears Holdings Corporation

Kimberley Absil is a General Manager for Sears Holdings, handling home delivery of appliances, in Ft. Pierce, FL. She has been with Sears for six years.

Kim’s previously held positions were as inventory and shipping manager in the distribution facility in Jacksonville, FL. Prior to managing a shift, Kim went through a Sears logistics management trainee program to learn the supply chain network, which involved working in the stores, to the distribution centers, to home delivery.

Kim graduated from Iowa State University in December 2002 with a Bachelor's of Science in Transportation and Logistics.

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