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In the next 10 to 20 years, businesses will be driven by experts in the supply chain industry because of emerging technology revolutionizing the way customers are served.

That’s according to Dave Clark, senior vice president of worldwide operations at Amazon, who spoke at UT’s Haslam College of Business Supply Chain Forum earlier this month.

Clark focused on new opportunities in supply chain and addressed some of Amazon’s many developments, including robotics, machine learning, and artificial intelligence.

“Across the supply chain, we’re moving into a place where technology is enabling us to move at a pace we never could before,” Clark said. “Five years from now the things that we thought were science fiction five years ago are going to be the norm.”

Clark is responsible for Amazon’s global supply chain and logistics operations. He also oversees the teams managing Amazon’s transportation and delivery services, sustainability programs, and operations technology, including Amazon Robotics. Amazon’s global supply chain and logistics operations comprise more than 100,000 employees operating across 149 fulfillment centers and operational sites in 17 countries.

“Dave offers a rare view of supply chain from a company that has leveraged its capabilities in this area as their main market differentiator,” said Paul Dittmann, executive director of UT’s Global Supply Chain Institute.

Other speakers at the forum included Sue Spence, vice president of procurement and sourcing at FedEx Services, and Scott McWilliams, executive vice president at GEODIS. Jim Radin and Mike Okoroafor, both vice presidents at McCormick and Company, presented about sustainability and innovation in the supply chain.

UT’s Supply Chain Forum has hosted corporate leaders, faculty, and students to discuss the latest in supply chain issues for more than two decades. Managers from 60 top corporations participate, and past keynote speakers have included the CEO and founder of FedEx and senior executives from Caterpillar, Goodyear, and Walmart.


Katie Williams (865-974-3589,