October 21 - 23, 2019
Hyatt Regency Austin, TX
Contact Us: 1.888.482.6012
Vice President – Target Indirect & Reverse Logistics
Irene Quarshie is a Vice President in Target Corporation’s global supply chain and logistics organization. In this role she has general management responsibilities for a multi-billion dollar P&L, leading the indirect, reverse and returns supply chain functions. Indirect supply chain operations include the forward movement of all non-sellable items procured to enable Target operations in all Stores, Distribution facilities and corporate offices. Reverse dispositioning and returns logistics include developing and executing strategies to maximize gross margin recovery rates through secondary markets, and removing consumer friction points related to product returns. Her responsibilities also include leased and owned facility operations management.
Previously, Irene was a vice president in Target’s global sourcing organization. She led a global team of 300+ team members and was responsible for product quality and responsible sourcing. Her team’s purpose was to ensure Target’s vendors and suppliers operated efficient, safe and ethical factory environments where they could produce safe, reliable, high-quality products. She had direct accountability for overseeing the production of nearly $30B in private label retail sales.
Irene was also Target’s Director of Government Affairs where she oversaw all government affairs activities at state and local levels nationwide. She has held other leadership positions during her tenure at Target, including Senior Group Manager of Corporate Risk and Responsibility and Group Manager of Supplier Diversity.
Prior to Target, Irene spent five years as a strategy and management consultant at Booz Allen Hamilton, and three years in the government affairs industry.
Among her many affiliations, Irene serves on the Board of Directors of Meet Minneapolis and Artspace. She also serves as a Board Observer to Inspectorio—a digital start up— and is a member of the President’s Advisory Council for Adelphi University. She is a member of the Executive Leadership Council and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. Additionally, her graduate paper on juvenile justice was published in A Comparative Perspective on Major Social Problems. She holds a B.A. in political science from Adelphi University and Master’s in Public Policy from American University.
Senior Divisional Asset Protection Leader
Rite Aid Corporation
Michael Mckinney, a 35 year veteran of the Chain Drug Industry, is currently the Senior Divisional Director of Asset Protection for Rite Aid Corporation. In this role Michael is responsible for the Northern Division and over 1200 stores which span from the Mid-Atlantic States to Upstate NY and the East Coast.
Mike is a results proven leader with a long standing track record of driving profits with a focus on Talent Management, Operational Excellence and flawless execution of Asset Protection strategies and tactics. He led the charge at Rite Aid becoming the first LP Certified professional while working for the company opening the door for dozens more professionals to achieve the certification.
When not working Mike and his wife Donna spend time with their two grown children, friends and family on Cape Cod enjoying the beach, great food and golf.
Senior Manager, RTV & Returns Planning, Operations Planning and Optimization
Julie Bray became Senior Manager, RTV and Returns Planning for QVC in April 2018. Her team’s shared purpose is the reduction of distressed inventory while maximizing recovery. With a focus on education, communication and relationship building, we are able to build and maintain a dynamic and robust reverse logistics platform in support of our customer and vendor community.
She earned her bachelor’s degree in Humanities from Villanova University.
Director of Product Management, Reverse Logistics and Backroom Operations
Sharon Su is the Director of Product Management for Backroom and Reverse Logistics at Sam’s Club. She leads a team that is focused on modernizing platforms and processes, increasing productivity through intuitive, user centric tools, and empowering merchants, operators, and liquidators to make data driven decisions that increase profitability.
Distribution Operations Director
BJ's Wholesale Club
F&B / Grocers
Founder & Chief Executive Officer
Ray Doustdar is the CEO & Founder of BUICED (pronounced like “juiced” with a B”), a new and disruptive brand that is helping consumers drink their daily vitamins in liquid form, providing them a 98% absorption level vs. only 10-20% for Pill Form and Gummy Vitamins. The Made USA Healthy Brand has expanded their distribution into Walmart Stores, launching both Citrus and Fruit Punch Flavor into 3000 stores in April 2018, as well as then in 2019 into Rite Aid, HEB, Meijer, Giant Eagle, and Schnuck Markets in St. Louis, in addition to being on Amazon.com and selling off their website.
Doustdar has competed and won several “Shark Tank” type shows, including the Nationally syndicated show “Hatched” on the CW Nationwide, as well as the Verizon sponsored “MVP” show on their Go90 Network, where he pitched NFL Superstars Antonio Brown from the Pittsburg Steelers, Hall of Famers Marshall Faulk and Terrell Owens, and managed to get New England Patriots Superstar Rob Gronkowski dancing after taking a shot of BUICED!
Fashion and Apparel
Director of Operations
With 15+ years of online marketing, operations, and sales experience, Rufus recently joined the Operations team at Stitch Fix.
Prior to Stitch Fix, he ran the sales and marketing team at sovrn (formerly Federated Media Publishing), the pioneer in online content marketing. Additionally, he ran marketing for Yahoo! Groups and marketing and customer acquisition for BigTent Groups, a startup that was sold to Care.com.
Vice President, Planning, Allocation and Regional Buying
Richie Proud is Vice President of Merchandise Planning, Allocation, and Product Insights for Groupe Dynamite in Montreal, Canada - parent company of Garage & Dynamite female clothing brands and one of the top fashion retailers in Canada. He is responsible for the global inventory management & product financial strategies across the 350+ worldwide stores of Groupe Dynamite. Richie’s retail career started with Abercrombie & Fitch where he had success as both a Merchant and a Merchandise Planner. As the Senior Director of Merchandise Planning, Richie led A&F’s international transformation initiative - a fleet review of all international store locations to optimize sales, inventory, and real estate strategies. Prior to joining Groupe Dynamite, Richie led the Merchandise Planning & Allocation teams for American Signature, Inc - owner of Value City Furniture and American Signature Furniture. He has extensive international supply chain experience - building strong relationships with factories, suppliers, and vendors all over Asia and South America.
IB/OB Area Manager
Lindrick Sands works for Belk as an Area Manager with a diverse background leading teams in E-commerce best practices, along with executing new projects for Belk’s omni-channel business initiatives. Lindrick is a results driven strategist working cross functionally to improve profitability and enhance the customer’s experience. Prior to joining Belk, Lindrick worked for Tractor Supply’s distribution network developing strong business relationships with vendors and brick and mortar locations to support customers and innovate technologies. Lindrick is happily married to his beautiful wife Trifine and has two daughters Alivia and Safia.
Head of Shipping Orders
Roman began his career in aerospace engineering at Pratt & Whitney, but followed his interests in the growing ecommerce industry to Fujifilm. As the first product leader in the new digital image printing technology, he transformed a traditional film printing company into the top US online and in-store retail digital image printing fulfillment business.
He spent the next eight years, first as Director of Product Management, and later as Vice President of Shipping and Operations, on the early startup team building Borderfree into the dominant global cross-border, turn-key solution for the retail industry. Borderfree was the first solution that allowed over 250 of the top US, UK and AU retailers and brands to easily expand their sales beyond their own domestic borders to customer throughout the entire world using their innovative shipping, duty & tax calculation, global restrictions, and customs compliance solution.
After a successful IPO and later Borderfree acquisition by Pitney Bowes, Roman became responsible for global cross border delivery for the new combined retailers and marketplaces business at Pitney Bowes as Vice President of Global Shipping Operations. During those years he has worked passionately to reduce customer friction around cross-border ecommerce and shipping, building tools, systems and partnering with the US Customs and Border Protection. While, in his spare time he studied to get a US custom broker license. He also worked with legislators and industry groups for four years to draft and finally pass the US Customs Reauthorization Bill, including presenting to both US Senate Finance Committee and the US House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee in Washington DC, as an industry international ecommerce expert to promote this favorable this ecommerce regulation. In the final legislation, he was able to add language that eliminated double taxation on US returns for customers in cross border sales, and increasing the US de minimis to $800 for low value ecommerce imports.
Roman has been the Head of Global Shipping at Etsy’s two-sided marketplace for the past two years, working to improve the entire buyer delivery experience, as well as the integrated seller shipping tools for the over 40 million worldwide Etsy buyers and 2 million+ global sellers.
Roman holds a Mechanical Engineering Degree from University of Connecticut and a MBA from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.
Beauty and Personal Care
Supply Chain/Reverse Logistics Management
Vinay oversees supply chain and reverse logistics management at L'Oréal. He is responsible for CPD Returns Policy implementation and adherence both internally and with all Retail Partners, while developing customized strategies that provide high customer service levels and reduced cost.
Vinay holds a Bachelor of Applied Science (BASc) from Rutgers Business School and a Bachelor's Degree in Economics from Rutgers University.
Director of Reverse Logistics
Jason Kovacs is the Director of Reverse Logistics for RevZilla, the multi-million dollar eCommerce destination for the motorcycle enthusiast often referred to as the "Zappos of motorcycle gear". RevZilla also handles logistics for their sister company Cycle Gear, the nation's largest and fastest-growing brick and mortar retailer of motorcycle parts and apparel. He manages a team across three locations that supports customer return and recovery operations. Jason has worked in the moto-retail industry for over 15 years. Before joining RevZilla, he managed eCommerce sales and supported the used vehicle sales team as the Internet Manager at a multi-line motorcycle dealership.
Senior Vice President, Global Service Parts
Tom Maher joined Dell in 1998 and is the Senior Vice President for Global Service Parts. Mr. Maher is responsible for service parts life cycle support in 160+ countries where his team manages over 1000 parts depots. His global responsibilities include: planning, procurement, distribution, custom services, returns, test, repair, inventory management, supplier management and parts disposal. Mr. Maher’s organization supports all Dell EMC hardware service offerings for each of Dell EMC’s Business Units and Lines of Business. His organization provides support for customer offerings ranging from: CIS, Depot and Next Business Day to Onsite Parts and a variety of Same Business Day solutions.
Prior to joining Dell, he was with Vanstar where he held various positions in after-market service parts support. He is an active member of the Reverse Logistics Association and Council of Supply Chain Professionals. Mr. Maher also sits on Arizona State’s Supply Chain Advisory Board and the Board for the Reverse Logistics Association.
Mr. Maher holds a B.A. degree from Villanova University.
Vice President, Returns, Damages & Recommerce
Jeremy is responsible for leading the strategy, financial performance,operations, and risk management of a multi-billion dollar portfolio of non-new inventory within the Recommerce and Reverse Logistics Supply Chain for Best Buy, including inventory across customer returns, damages, trade-in, end of life, recall, recycling, waste, and/or other nontraditional inventory streams. Jeremy also leads a cross-functional team consisting of operations, technology, business development, sales, analytics, inventory management, and environmental services with the goal of optimizing recovery, building sustainable operational processes, and the development of recommerce and reverse logistics technologies.
Global Recovery Channel Lead
Karri LaBree has been at Microsoft for 20 years in various positions including Supply Chain IT, Finance, Business Management and Retail Channel. Prior to Microsoft, she spent five years at The Boeing Company including two years in Internal Audit. Over the last two years, Karri has been leading Microsoft's Recovery Channel, ensuring compliant and effective processes, through a global network of suppliers, for the disposition of aged, excess and returned inventory suitable for liquidation or recycling. Karri works closely with internal stakeholders and her Suppliers to continually improve processes while seeking greater opportunities for recoveries, re-use and other sustainability programs. Karri is a graduate from Washington State University with a degree in Business Management.
Director, After-Sales Optimization
Nate Omann has been with Best Buy for 18 years working in Services, on Merchant Teams and as a Program Lead. Currently, he is a Reverse Logistics Director where he and his team are setting strategy & leading efforts to reduce Returns/Exchanges & Product Damages while improving Customer & Retail experiences. Nate works closely with Product Vendors, Merchants and many other Internal teams to identify areas of opportunity. In addition, his team builds analytical tools to help identify solutions for problematic skus, locations and processes.
Excess Inventory Management
Kirstin joins the Consumer Returns speaker list again this year, with close to 20 years of experience between IBM and Lenovo. Kirstin has spent time within both the Personal Computing and Data Center spaces, and has extensive knowledge of end to end supply chain functions including customer fulfillment, demand planning, customer experience, inventory control, forward logistics, and reverse logistics. Over the last 3 years, Kirstin has expanded her role in the management of excess, obsolete, returned, and off lease inventory, managing the disposition of both finished goods as well as components around the world. Kirstin’s role now includes the management of all excess inventory activities for Lenovo’s North America Personal Computing & Devices Group, the Worldwide Data Center Group, and most recently the North America Services Team. Removing the silos found in large corporations and streamlining the reverse logistics processes continues to be Kirstin’s areas of focus and expertise. Her knowledge of refurbishment and the secondary market propels her forward in the quest for the perfect balance among the corporate directives of financials, on hand inventory, and disposition management.
Senior Manager Returns Management
Philips Electronics North America Corporation
Director, Supply Chain Operations
Hi this is Joyce Cruts, the Director of Supply chain Operations for Acer America Corporation. I am a proud member of the RLA board as well as Co-Chair of the Consumer Products Committee. I am a Solution-driven Operations Leader with nearly 20 years of demonstrated expertise in the consumer electronics business. I excel at strategic resolution of complex business challenges starting with implementing new approaches, and developing short and long-term strategies to achieve critical business goals. I am passionate about promoting sustainability and "green" supply chain methodologies to serve a higher level of social responsibility. By strategically optimizing the supply chain via reducing non-value added processes, eliminating redundancies and inefficiencies, I can fulfill this passion while making the best commercial decisions.
Senior Manager, NA Returns & Remarketing
Liza Shanks (pronounced Leeza) is the Logistics Manager at Molekule, Inc., where she oversees the global transportation of Molekule's groundbreaking technology from the manufacturers to the end users. She has a broad range of logistics experience including freight forwarding, supply chain management, international distribution, and direct-to-consumer fulfillment.
Liza is passionate about global trade and bringing products to market that make a positive impact. She is a licensed U.S. Customs Broker, and holds a BA in International Relations from U.C. Davis, and an MBA from the University of San Francisco.
Vice President, Global Quality
Jan (Johannes) Peels is Vice President, Global Quality for Allegion. Jan’s broad Quality expertise covers over 20 years of global supply chain exposure, with senior responsibility at both the tactical and strategic level. His experiences cover end-to-end deployment of world class yet pragmatic Quality Assurance processes in the areas of Warranty, Manufacturing, Advanced Product Quality, Product Testing and Supply Chain that includes Reversed Logistics. Jan has extensive international exposure and was instrumental in developing a reversed logistics process at Allegion.
Quality Manager – Olathe DSC
Ryan Bond is Quality Manager, Olathe Distribution Service Center for Allegion. Ryan’s expertise covers a combined 13 years of retail store front and reverse supply chain experience. He has extensive experience in the direct management, design, implementation, and control of obsolescence with reverse logistics recovery efforts. Ryan was key in further developing and growing the Consumer Returns Recovery Line and continues to lead that process at Allegion’s National Distribution Center in Olathe, KS.
Co-Founder & CEO
Kyle Wiens is the co-founder of iFixit, the repair community internationally known for open source repair manuals and product teardowns. iFixit has empowered hundreds of millions of people to repair their broken stuff. Kyle has testified before the US Copyright Office and the International Trade Commission, and he is involved in developing global environmental standards.
Kyle regularly speaks on design for repair, service documentation, and the environmental impact of manufacturing. His writing has appeared in The Atlantic, Harvard Business Review, Wired, Popular Mechanics, and the Wall Street Journal.
Regulatory, Academics, Industry Associations
International Trade Analyst
U.S. International Trade Commission
Brian Daigle is the consumer electronics analyst in the Office of Advanced Technology and Machinery at the U.S. International Trade Commission. His work is focused on the trade of electronics and telecommunications products, as well as policies that impact the trade of digital goods and services. Prior to the USITC, Brian worked for the U.S. State Department and the consulting firm American Continental Group. He received his undergraduate degrees at UC San Diego and his MSc in political economy at the London School of Economics.
The Reverse Logistics Association
Fizah Jadhavji is the president of Vivitech Solutions, which provides customized Reverse Logistics solutions for their major OEM clients. Vivitech takes complete responsibility for managing the constant flow of consumer returns from beginning-to-end, allowing their OEM partners to stay focused on their core business strategy.
Vivitech's mission is to help their clients achieve better price control, achieve highest recovery possible in the secondary market with sensitivity to their primary market, create a constant flow of revenue streams for their OEM partners, and give back to the planet by being part of the solution of reducing the amount of waste our society generates everyday by helping to extend the product life cycle.
SVP, Strategic Relationships and Partner Solutions
John Sedej is Senior Vice President of Strategic Relationships and Partner Solutions for Clover Wireless. He has more than 20 plus years of strategic supply-chain experience including global manufacturing, quality and operations experience within the wireless, high-tech electronics, aerospace and automotive sectors. His career has included Senior VP for Leap Wireless responsible for procurement and supply-chain operations including, aftermarket services and repair. He also served as Senior VP for Genpact leading their global supply chain and service chain practice and business development for strategic accounts. Prior to his position with Genpact, Sedej served as Vice President of SimFlex Group, an independent supply-chain software and consulting services group within Flextronics as well as managed several large strategic accounts. He has extensive experience in complex solution development and implementing the integrated business management processes and tools to improve a company's Sales, Service, Inventory and Operational Planning.
John Sedej earned a double B.S.E. degree in electrical and biomedical engineering from Duke University, as well as an MBA with emphasis in international business and finance from the University of San Diego.
Vice President Product
Barry has more than fifteen years of experience spanning the fields of Product Management, Marketing, and User Experience Design, expertise he honed while serving as a product executive at a number of successful Silicon Valley tech companies including BrightRoll, ShareThis, Ticketfly, Eventbrite, and now Narvar. Prior to that, he worked in product development at PayPal and Ford Motor Company. He now leads the product team at Narvar.
Group Chief Executive Officer
Patrick Wiedemann, an industrial engineering graduate, joined RLG as CFO in June 2010. He was appointed CEO in January 2012 and is today responsible for the RLG Group ,its global subsidiaries, in addition, CEO of Reverse Logistics GmbH and CCR Logistics Systems AG. His vision has been for a truly sustainable economy that works without waste, saves resources and is restorative by its circular economy. Through Patrick’s leadership the Group is recognized as a global leader who provide innovative, comprehensive returns management solutions enabling manufacturers and distributors to actively drive product and commodity returns thus facilitating multiple cycles of use. Today RLG work in partnership with Government Agencies, OEM’s and G500 organizations in the delivery of returns management solutions ensuring Circular economy, smarter business rules, better customer experiences and driving additional sales revenues.
Today RLG’s global footprint includes 22 offices, 34 subsidiaries with over 500 employee’s operating in 80 countries – a footprint which is growing year on year.
Consumer Returns 2019
Senior Conference Producer
WBR - Consumer Returns 2019
Antonia Kay is a Senior Conference Producer at Worldwide Business Research (WBR). She has worked in event production since 2013 and is currently responsible for project management, market research, content creation, and speaker recruitment for best-in-class manufacturing, retail and medical device conferences that bring together executive leaders from Fortune 500 organizations and innovative start-ups for a collaborative debate about the latest digital transformation trends, the evolution of customer care, and regulatory compliance.
Prior to joining WBR, Antonia held various roles in advertising/PR, operations and immigration-through-investment consulting.
Antonia holds a B.A. degree in Journalism from CUNY and a B.A. degree in Education from A.S. Pushkin Brest State University. Originally from Belarus, she speaks six languages and enjoys traveling the world and exploring foreign cultures and traditions.
We are currently pulling together the agenda and speaker line-up for 2019. Would you like to get involved as speaker? Get in touch with Antonia Kay!
Program Director, Consumer Returns 2019
Want to see who spoke previously? View the list here.