Top five coolest women making waves in the supply chain sector
For decades, women have been making waves within the supply chain and logistics industry, we take a look at HighJump’s top five from over the years.
1. Anna Drake
Image source: AWESOME
Anna Drake is the founder of Achieving Women’s Excellence in Supply Chain Operations, Management and Education (AWESOME). After becoming the only woman to receive a Distinguished Service Award from the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP) in 2012, Drake started to reflect on why no woman had ever been recognised before. This led Drake to strive to identify the barriers preventing women from being successful in the supply chain industry.
AWESOME is a leadership initiative that strives to help women stake their claim in the industry by providing learning, mentorship and professional growth opportunities.
2. Megan Smith
Image source: LinkedIn
Megan Smith is the current CEO of Symbia Logistics. Over the years, Smith has started and sold multiple businesses, finding her niche in the logistics world building on her family’s legacy of over 150 years by propelling the Amware Logistics into a new era. Backed by the National Women Business Owners Corporation, Smith rebranded the company into Symbia Logistics building a business with gender diversity initiatives at its roots.
3. Edwina Justus
Image source: Union Pacific
In 1976, Edwina Justus, became the first black female locomotive engineer to work for Union Pacific Railroads. She started her career as a traction motor clerk, shipping livestock, airplane wings and cars to Wyoming and Colorado for the next 22 years.
4. Ellen Voie
Image source: LinkedIn
Ellen Voie is the current President and CEO of the Women in Trucking Association. According to Indeed, only 8% of truck drivers are women, as part of the Women in Trucking Association Voie is dedicated to change this statistic, by traveling around the world to give talks and empower women to join the trucking industry.
5. Melonee Wise
Image source: Fetch Robotics
Forging the future of supply chain robotics solutions, Melonee Wise is the CEO of Fetch Robotics developing autonomous mobile robotics to create more efficient warehouses when it comes to tracking, picking, finding and moving inventory.
So far the company has raised US$94mn in funding and has several hundred robots around the world.
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Elon Musk's Boring Co. planning wider tunnels for freight
Elon Musk’s drilling outfit The Boring Company could be shifting its focus towards subterranean freight and logistics solutions, according to reports.
A Boring Co. pitch deck seen and shared by Bloomberg depicts plans to construct wider tunnels designed to accommodate shipping containers.
Founded by Tesla CEO Musk in 2016, the company initially stated its mission was to offer safer, faster point-to-point transport for people, particularly in cities plagued by traffic congestion. It also planned longer tunnels to ferry passengers between popular destinations across the US.
The Boring Co. completed its first commercial project earlier this year in April. The 1.7m tunnel system is designed to move professionals between convention centres in Las Vegas using Tesla EVs. It says the Las Vegas Convention Centre Loop can cut travel time between venues from 45 minutes to just two.
Boring Co.'s new freight tunnels
The Boring Co.'s new tunnel designs would allow freight to be transported on purpose built platforms, labelled as “battery-powered freight carriers”. The document shows that, though the containers could technically fit within its current 12-foot tunnels, wider tunnels would be more efficient. Designs for a new tunnel, 21 feet in diameter, show that they can comfortably accommodate two containers side-by-side, with a one-foot gap between them.
The Boring Co.’s new drilling machine, dubbed Prufrock, can tunnel at a rate of one mile per week, which is six times faster than its previous machine, and is designed to ‘porpoise’ - mimicking the marine animal by ‘diving’ below ground and reemerging once the tunnel is complete.
Tesla’s supply chain woes
Tesla is facing its own supply chain and logistic issues. The EV manufacturer has raised the price of its vehicles, with CEO Musk confirming the incremental hike was a result of “major supply chain pressure”. Musk replied to a disgruntled Twitter user, confused as to why prices were rising while features were being removed from the cars, saying the “raw materials especially” were a big issue.
Car manufacturing continues to be one of the industries hit hardest by a global shortage in semiconductor chips. While China’s chip manufacturing levels hit an all-time high in May, and the US is proposing a 25% tax credit for chip manufacturers, demand still outstrips supply. Automakers including Volkswagen and Audi have again said they expect reduced vehicle output in the next quarter due to a lack of semiconductors, with more factory downtime likely.
Top Image credit: The Boring Company / @boringcompany