ROAR Conference & Matchmaker – Philadelphia

Tuesday, September 11, 2018 7:30 AM - 06:00 PM
Sofitel Philadelphia – 120 South 17th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103


Doing business differently is required for improved industry outcomes. Conversation and the desire to actively connect businesses and corporations to opportunities that will yield high dividends, are what guide the ROAR Conference & Matchmaker

Intimate conversations and panel discussions with thought leaders and industry disruptors.

Breakfast Keynote Speaker and Workshop Presenter

Todd Cohen


Todd Cohen is the nation’s leading voice on building Sales Culture. A dynamic, engaging and motivational keynote speaker, Todd’s message is relevant to any organization striving to increase revenue, strengthen relationships and improve client satisfaction. Using humor and real-life examples, Todd demonstrates how every conversation is a “selling moment” and how everyone can contribute to the growth and profitability of the organization

Averaging 90 appearances per year, Todd’s audiences range in size from small groups to upwards of 5,000 people. Unlike traditional “sales coaches,” who focus only on sales teams, Todd teaches the non-sales professional how everything he or she does impacts the decision making process. His diverse clientele includes Subaru of America, Inc., NFL Players Inc., Corning, The American Institute of Architects, EY LP, and Investors Bank.

In 2015, Todd was awarded the title of Certified Speaking Professional (CSP), the highest-earned designation awarded by the National Speakers Association (NSA). He is a member of the NSA Chapter Leadership Council and a past president of NSA’s Philadelphia Chapter. He serves on the board of the Greater Philadelphia Senior Executives Group (GPSEG) and was co-chair of GPSEG’s Sales and Marketing Group. Todd is a member of the American Society of Training and Development and previously served on the board of the Pennsylvania Society of People and Strategy.

More ...

Keynote Luncheon Panel

Scott A. Vowels

Manager, Supplier Diversity at Apple

Scott A. Vowels, PhD is recognized as a leading expert in the field of Supplier Diversity and is a frequent speaker and panelist on industry issues. Dr. Vowels currently manages the Supplier Diversity Program for Apple and is widely known within the supplier diversity network for successfully leading both the Northern California and Alabama Minority Supplier Development Councils to national prominence as President & CEO. While leading the Alabama Council, Vowels also simultaneously operated a federal Minority Business Opportunity Center for the U.S. Department of Commerce Minority Business Development Agency.

Early in his career, Vowels managed procurement and sourcing processes for manufacturing environments within General Motors and has over 20 years of procurement and 10 years of supplier diversity experience. Before entering the corporate workforce, Vowels was on an entirely different career path and traveled extensively as a world-ranked professional tennis player. He still counts travel among his greatest passions, but when he’s not on the road, Scott resides in Oakland, California.

His latest book, Don’t Be Afraid to Call the Baby Ugly reached #1 on Amazon in both ‘Supplier Diversity’ and ‘Minority Business’ categories.

Shelly Brown

Diversity Solutions Leader, Aon

As Diversity Solutions Leader for Aon, Shelly utilizes his 20+ years of experience leading successful client service and business development roles. His leadership style engages colleagues, partners and clients, accelerating top-line revenue growth with a commitment to return on investment at the bottom line.

Before joining Aon, Johnson Controls in 2006, appointed him Manager of Supplier Diversity & Business Development in manufacturing and construction business units. A sample roster of clients who benefit from his problem solving and consultative approach include automotive, aviation, construction, CPG, distribution, energy, retail and pharmaceutical industry leaders.

He is a member of the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) Board of Directors and the Immediate Past Chairman of the Chicago Minority Supplier Development Council. Additionally, he supports the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) having served on national committees and as a member of the WBENC National Board of Directors.

Shelly was as a contributor to the 2012 published Billion Dollar Roundtable’s Supplier Diversity Best Practices: Building Excellence to Improve the Supply-Chain Matrix. He holds a Master of Business Administration from William Woods University and has completed Executive Education coursework at Dartmouth College.

He is an honorably discharged veteran of the US Army decorated for service during Desert Shield and Desert Storm.

Loren Hopkins Taylor, CPSD

Sourcing Manager, Small Business & Supplier Diversity, DuPont Sourcing & Logistics

Loren is the Sourcing Manager for Small Business and Supplier Diversity at the DuPont Company, where she manages the supplier diversity program for a Fortune 100 company. Ms. Taylor has been with DuPont since 1980, in roles ranging from sales and marketing to international customer service to her previous role as the sourcing manager for professional services, where she oversaw annual spend of more than $2 billion. Among her achievements is the design, implementation and leadership of the first transactional service center for S&L, a model now replicated in countries around the globe.

In her current position, Ms. Taylor Identifies and drives the utilization of small businesses and diverse suppliers with a goal of increasing strategic alignment with this essential part of the local, regional, and national economy. Her goal is to increase the percentage of purchases made from small and diverse supplier’s year over year. She is passionate about her role in bringing the DuPont core value of “Respect for People” to life and keeping business local, integrating suppliers from the local community into the regional supply chain.

Ms. Taylor serves on the Board of Directors of the Eastern Minority Supplier Development Council, the Women’s Business Enterprise Council of PA-DE-sNJ and The Conference Board's Supplier Diversity Leadership Council. She is Six Sigma Greenbelt certified, is a graduate of the Women Unlimited leadership program, Business 4 Results leadership program and holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree from the University of Delaware.



Career Summary
Senior Manager with proven success in introducing best-in-class sourcing methodologies, processes, and tools that drive efficiency, productivity, quality, and cost improvements. Expert in forming, negotiating, and managing strategic partnerships with multibillion-dollar businesses. Leverage network of contacts to build alliances with best-in-class suppliers, secure preferential pricing, terms, service, and conditions, and optimize supplier performance.

Work Experience
Henkels & McCoy, Inc. - 2014-Present
Primary function is to establish a world class procurement, strategic sourcing and supply chain management best practices involving people, technology, organization alignment, training, and processes. Participate, lead, and facilitate Continuous Improvement and Lean activities. Re-engineer, streamline, and automate the procurement operating model at the corporate, regional, line of business and field levels based on best in class practices. Develop strategic plan for procurement technology enhancements and a Procure to Pay (P2P) platform roadmap.

More ...

Seminar Presenters

Linda Mysliwy Conlin

President, World Trade Center of Greater Philadelphia

With over 30 years of international trade, trade finance and public policy experience, President Linda Mysliwy Conlin leads the World Trade Center of Greater Philadelphia (WTCGP), a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization and one of over 300 World Trade Centers around the globe.

Since 2009, Conlin has increased the impact and contribution of WTCGP to Greater Philadelphia’s economy by leading a team of seasoned professionals who, to date, have helped exporting companies, largely small and medium-sized businesses, in the region generate a record total of $1.7 billion in export sales. She has also forged important strategic partnerships to advance the global growth of Greater Philadelphia’s leading universities and medical institutions and to expand exporter access to global expertise and services provided by the region’s leading banks, law and accounting firms, and other global service providers.

More ...

Jason Beattie

Executive Director, Strategic Procurement at Comcast Cable

Jason Beattie is an Executive Director, Strategic Procurement at Comcast Cable where he provides strategic oversight to the Professional Services and Marketing spend categories. Additionally, Jason is responsible for leading the Professional Services Diversity program, overseeing contingent labor sourcing, vendor management, contracting and policy enforcement.

Prior to joining Comcast, Jason spent time leading an IT Finance practice for a national mortgage insurance provider and establishing finance practices a MRO supply company.

Jason holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Economics and International Business from Penn State University and resides in the greater Philadelphia area with his wife and two children.

L. Jay Burks

Director of Supplier Diversity at the Comcast Corporation

L. Jay Burks, PhD, is the Director of Supplier Diversity at the Comcast Corporation where he is responsible for implementing policies and procedures to increase opportunities for diverse-owned businesses in procurement. Prior to joining Comcast, he served as Executive Director of the State of Delaware's Office of Supplier Diversity where he helped develop executive orders and strategic plans to further the growth of supplier diversity in Delaware.

Dr. Burks has a combined 20 plus years of experience in sales, marketing, entrepreneurship, supply chain management, procurement and general management. In addition to his professional experience he has taught both graduate and undergraduate courses for over fifteen years as an adjunct professor. Dr. Burks is a board member for the Eastern Minority Supplier Development Council (EMSDC), The Delaware County Community College Educational Foundation and serves as a Corporate Advisory Board member for Disability:IN.

Dr. Burks received a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Morehouse College, a Master of Business Administration from the W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University, and a PhD from the University of Maryland Eastern Shore.

Valarie J. Cofield

President and Chief Executive Officer of the Eastern Minority Supplier Development Council (EMSDC)

Since 2014, Cofield has been using her many years working in business development and supplier diversity development to spark and facilitate business partnerships between EMSDC’s corporate members and its certified Minority Business Enterprises. A creative thinker with invaluable experience in contract negotiations, strategy development and opportunity identification, Cofield embodies EMSDC’s role as a connector and facilitator for business opportunities and diversity and inclusion champion. Cofield is motivated by the desire to position EMSDC as a leader in the industry continuing to prepare MBEs to successfully engage with the supply chains of its corporate and institutional members, while making the case for supplier diversity. She is also focused on ensuring that certified MBEs/diverse suppliers meet the current and future needs of the supply chain and are positioned to bring value and solutions to the procurement process.

More ...

Brandon Gruttadauria

Brandon Gruttadauria is Frontier Technologies's field-based innovative and emerging technology thought leader. He has extensive experience in designing and securing datacenter and vertical market specific solutions, including: server/storage/networking datacenter infrastructure; software-defined & virtualization solutions; cloud and on premise hosted agile infrastructures; enterprise mobility and endpoint management solutions. Brandon has over 12 years’ experience consulting on how to optimize and secure data centers and intellectual capital, and holds dozens of industry-standard certifications.

Brandon hails from Buffalo, NY, and has earned his bachelor’s degree in Computer Information Systems from the State University of New York College at Buffalo. You’ll typically find Brandon encompassed in all things mechanical and technical, from classic cars, building arcade machines, 3D Printing, to creating his own IoT devices. Don’t hesitate to ask him about his hobbies if you bump into him!

Marc Kramer

Executive director of the Private Investors Forum and executive-in-residence at St. Joseph University

Marc Kramer, who is executive director of the Private Investors Forum and executive-in-residence at St. Joseph University, has run over 20 startups, written six books, is a national columnist on entrepreneurship for American City Business Journals and former Inc. Entrepreneur of the Year. He has a master’s in management from Penn State University and a BS in Broadcast Journalism from West Virginia University.

Adair Jacobson

Senior Director of Procurement at Comcast Cable

Adair Jacobson is a Senior Director of Procurement at Comcast Cable. She is responsible for leading network hardware procurement activities, including negotiations, vendor management, and spend analysis, as well as other strategic initiatives.

Prior to joining Comcast, Adair spent four years at Time Warner Cable leading the Decision Support & Analytics team supporting the Supply Chain and Engineering groups, and five years at Accenture consulting for cable, telecom, and other technology industry clients.

Adair holds a Bachelor of Science in Supply Chain and Operations Management from the University of Minnesota, as well as a Master of Engineering Management from Duke University.

Michael J. Lincoln

Executive Director of Procurement for Comcast

Michael J. Lincoln is Executive Director of Procurement for Comcast’s where his team supports Xfinity Mobile, Xfinity Home, Xfinity Retail, Machine Q, Strategic Business Initiatives, and Comcast’s Supply Chain group. Prior to joining Comcast, he served in various leadership roles at T-Mobile, Alltel (Now Verizon Wireless), and Lucent Technologies (Now Nokia).

During Michael’s 20+ years in Telecom and Wireless industries his tours have ranged from Operations, Planning, Procurement, to Supply Chain. These roles allowed him to travel globally to Asia, South/Latin America, Europe and India. He served in multiple award winning organizations: 2009 ISM Richter Organizational Structure (Alltel), 2012 ISM Richter Suitability (T-Mobile), 2012 World Trade Group’s Green Supply Chain Award, and 2012 Supply & Demand Chain Executive magazine.

During his leisure time, Michael ensures to spend quality time with his wife and children. He enjoys various outdoors activities, charitable projects, traveling, and cooking.

Sharon Manker

Sharon Manker is a Philadelphia native with seventeen years in Supply Management with focus on procurement, strategic sourcing, and supplier diversity and supplier development. She received the Bachelor's Degree in Communications & Applied Technology from the Drexel University in 2014, and the Master of Education Degree in Organizational Leadership from Northcentral University in 2017. Additionally, she holds certifications from OSHA in construction, from Toastmasters International in public speaking and LEAN Six-Sigma Yellow belts from both American Water and Shriners International.

Prior to joining the American Water’s Supply Chain, Sharon Manker worked as a senior buyer for Shriners International Headquarters in Tampa, Florida supporting the 22 hospitals across the US and in Mexico and Canada. In this role, she coordinated the competitive bid process by issuing Request for Information (RFI) and Request for Proposals (RFP) to perspective suppliers, and led cross-functional teams to select companies to bid on projects, analyze proposals and select winners of sourcing events. Mrs. Manker was also responsible for planning, implementing, and supervising buyer activities and training to ensure supplies and equipment were available to meet the routine and emergency needs for all areas of the hospitals. In previous roles, Mrs. Manker has worked for Penn Medicine’s Corporate Supply Chain at the start of her supply chain career.

More ...

Michelle N. Morin

Executive Director of the State of Delaware Office of Supplier Diversity (OSD)

Michelle N. Morin, M.B.A.: is the Executive Director of the State of Delaware Office of Supplier Diversity (OSD), within the Government Support Services (GSS) of the Office of Management and Budget. It is the mission of her office to assist the entire supplier diversity community of minority, women, veteran, service disabled veteran, and individuals with disabilities owned businesses as well as small businesses of a unique size in competing for the provision of commodities, services, and construction to State departments, agencies, authorities, school districts, higher education institutions and all businesses. Her supplier diversity experience spans state procurement, certification, strategic planning, reporting, outreach, education, development, inclusion, and creation of policy and methodologies. Michelle interacts nationally with fellow supplier diversity and procurement professionals through a quarterly engagement.

More ...

Christian Nascimento

Executive Director, Premise Services, Comcast Business

Christian Nascimento Executive Director, Premise Services, Comcast Business. Christian Nascimento is responsible for developing, launching and managing next generation service offerings for Comcast Business, with a focus on products that combine customer premise equipment, cloud services, and a digital experience. He manages all aspects of the product life cycle, from business development to launch, to analysis and enhancement to ensure growth.

Christian was responsible for the development and launch of SmartOffice, Comcast’s commercial video monitoring product, taking the product from ideation, to a single market trial, to a national deployment across the entire Comcast footprint. He also led the efforts to launch Motion Insights, SmartOffice’s digital motion analytics feature, and has championed the use of the product in “Smart City” initiatives, particularly Detroit’s Project Green Light. He has also overseen the market expansion of WiFi Pro, Comcast Business’ enhanced, intelligent WiFi product for SMBs.

Christian holds a Bachelor of Science from Widener University and an MBA from Villanova University, and currently serves on the Dean’s Advisory Council for the Widener University School of Business.

Beth Pomper

An International Marketing and Sales Professional

Beth Pomper is an international marketing and sales professional offering over 30 years of progressive leadership experience in support of export business activities. Beth has worked in both the private and public sectors; and is currently the Export Advisor to the State of Delaware. She created and implemented the State’s first Strategic Export Plan and provides Delaware companies with personalized export assistance to achieve export sales growth and job creation. She is responsible for identifying the countries that offer the greatest opportunity for Delaware businesses, establishing the Delaware foreign trade representative network, and organizing and implementing the State’s export programs.

Beth has worked for both large and small companies. She has particular experience in the food industry, launching and assisting in the expansion of over one hundred of America’s favorite brands overseas. Some you may recognize – Ralcorp, Ocean Spray, Wakefern Foods, Major Peters Cocktail Mix and many more. She worked to establish distributor networks in Mexico, France, the Netherlands, Germany, Colombia, Australia, Ireland, UK, Spain, Japan, Thailand, Singapore, Hong Kong, Peru, South Korea, Bulgaria, the Caribbean, and the Czech Republic.

More ...

Corey Smith

Sr. Director of Supplier Diversity
Major League Baseball

As Senior Director of Supplier Diversity and Strategic Sourcing for Major League Baseball, Smith establishes and maintains league-wide procurement practices for all 30 baseball clubs and the Commissioner’s Office. Prior to joining MLB, Smith spent over four years at NBC Universal as Director of Supplier Diversity where he implemented strategies throughout the company that increased the use of minority and woman-owned businesses across a variety of services.

Smith’s career reflects over 15 years of experience in procurement and over 10 years in supplier diversity. Prior to NBC Universal, Smith held various sourcing and supplier diversity positions at companies such as Altria Corporate Services, Columbia University and Advanced Technological Solutions.


James R. Burnett

Director of the West Philadelphia Financial Services Institution (WPFSI).

Mr. Burnett is the Executive Director of the West Philadelphia Financial Services Institution (WPFSI). He has worked in the financial services industry for over 29 years, beginning his career with Fidelity Bank 1988. In 1999 Mr. Burnett began a new career in community economic development with the West Philadelphia Financial Services Institution (WPFSI). The position with WPFSI led to an adjunct professor position at Philadelphia University in the School of Landscape Design. In addition to his professional focus, Mr. Burnett has served diligently on various community and professional boards and is committed to the promotion of financial education and access to capital.

More ...

Capital Roundtables

Rachel Baldini

Director of Lending for First State Community Loan Fund

Rachel Baldini serves as Director of Lending for First State Community Loan Fund. She manages all lending activities, which includes loans made under small business and community development programs. Such lending activities include loan underwriting, loan origination, loan servicing, and portfolio management. She has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Finance and Business Administration from the University of Delaware.

Lucy Cortez MS-ECM

Vice President, Community First Fund

Lucy Cortez currently serves as Vice President with Community First Fund. In her role she is responsible in overseeing commercial lending, small business lending and conducting business development within Berks, Bucks, Chester, and Montgomery County regional markets.

Community First Fund is a private non-profit Community Development Financing Institution (CDFI) organization dedicated to the creation of an equitable and socially conscious economic community that provides a variety of financing products to individuals and community based organizations committed to starting an expanding small businesses.

She has served as Legislative Aide to the Community and Economic Development Committee for the State of Pennsylvania and most recently as an Enforcement Administrator with the Bureau of Compliance and Investigations for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Department of Banking and Securities.

More ...

Patrick Ginn

Business Banker, Wells Fargo

Marc Kramer

Executive director of the Private Investors Forum and executive-in-residence at St. Joseph University

Marc Kramer, who is executive director of the Private Investors Forum and executive-in-residence at St. Joseph University, has run over 20 startups, written six books, is a national columnist on entrepreneurship for American City Business Journals and former Inc. Entrepreneur of the Year. He has a master’s in management from Penn State University and a BS in Broadcast Journalism from West Virginia University.

Dr. Kenneth Scott

President/CEO, Beech Companies

Kenneth Scott is well known throughout the Philadelphia region for his support and commitment to community service. His work has produced comprehensive development in the areas of Business, Education, Finance, Media, Housing, Philanthropy, Real Estate Development and Technology.

Dr. Scott currently serves as the President of the Beech Companies (Beech Interplex, Inc., Beech Business Bank, Beech International, The Alston/Beech Foundation, Beech Community Services Corporation, Beech LLC, Beech Technologies and the Beech Network – (Publisher of The Cecil B. Moore Community Times and Media/Technology Studio). He is also the Executive Producer of several documentary films including the award winning “Barnes and Beyond” and “The Beech Experiment”.

Over the past 25 years The Beech Companies non-profit operations has leveraged over Two (2) Billion dollars in Community and Economic Development in Philadelphia, Created 5,000 Jobs, awarded Millions in Grants to Non-Profit Organizations, Provided Hundreds of College Scholarships, Produced 2,000 Units of Affordable Housing and 350,000 Square Feet of Commercial/Retail/Educational Facilities.

More ...



  • Sofitel Philadelphia Hotel

  • 120 South 17th Street

  • Philadelphia, PA 19103

  • + Google Map

Copyright © 2018 Eventdex. All Rights Reserved