Delivering for Best-in-Class Wholesaler-Distributors

November 14-15, 2017 at the O’Hare Hilton

Download Content from this Roundtable

“NAW enables a free-flow of ideas and answers to Questions for Operations executives from large companies and different industries. The Roundtable is a “great-value-add” since it allows you to discuss tactical issues with counterparts facing the same challenges.”

Submitted Anonymously by the Senior Vice President of Operations of a $7 Billion Dollar Distribution Company

The NAW Billion Dollar Company Operations Roundtable for direct members was created as a new mechanism for the Operations Executives of large distribution enterprises to network with non-competing peers in multiple lines of trade on key operations issues.

Similar to other billion dollar roundtables NAW has created for the CIO, CFO, Chief Legal Officer, and CHRO, this by invitation roundtable is composed of executives from billion dollar companies that meet in Chicago two times per year. This highly interactive group consists of the SENIOR-MOST operations executives. The annual fee is $1,800 per member, which covers meeting costs for two events in a twelve month cycle. Participants are expected to cover the cost of their hotel and travel. Once the annual fee is paid, there are no additional fees to attend the meetings, which will last one day beginning with a reception and dinner the evening before.

The participating companies can also name an alternate who can take the place of the Operations Executive, should that person be unable to attend the scheduled meeting.

If you would like to learn more please contact John Peter, Adam Isenberg or Tara Mostatab at 202.872.0885.

Eligibility: Companies with $1B+ in annual revenue.
The NAW Billion Dollar Roundtable is the only opportunity that provides networking and benchmarking exclusively with other top executives of non competing, like-sized Wholesale-Distribution companies.

NAW Billion Dollar Operations Roundtable Agenda

Day 1 - November 14, 2017

6:00 PM – 7:00 PM
Drinks & Dialogue Reception

Come prepared to meet and mingle with your fellow participants from the largest firms in the industry.

7:00 PM – 9:30 PM
Billion Dollar Executive Dinner

Make sure to attend the most exclusive executive supper club in Chicago this evening! This dinner is your opportunity to pick the brains of the senior executives for the top wholesale distribution companies in the industry. This is a joint dinner that will include the CLO, HR and Operations executives attending the spring Roundtable.

Day 2 - November 15, 2017

7:00 AM – 7:45 AM

8:00 AM – 9:30 AM

Opening Session & Discussion
“Looking into the Future – What the Workforce Will Look Like in 10+ Years”

David Bauders, CEO, Strategic Pricing Associates


Some studies say that over the next 25 years, 30% of the sales functions will be replaced by automation. GM, BMW, Ford, Tesla, and even Uber are, as we know, experimenting with self-driving/driverless cars. What does this mean for the “last mile” of distribution? How will this affect the way we attract and recruit potential employees? During this opening session, you will hear from an industry expert who is currently helping industry leaders evaluate their talent needs and has come up with different ways to tackle the “talent gap” for operational distribution executives.


  • What is the current state of play in the competition for talent in distribution operations?
  • Strategies to overcome those obstacles today
  • A look into a “crystal ball” as what we all can expect in the not too distant future in the ways of workforce talent and the make-up of that workforce


9:30 AM – 9:45 AM

9:45 AM – 11:00 AM

General Session & Discussion
“DOT Regs and the Trump Administration”

Kevin Burch, Immediate Past Chairman, The American Trucking Association


There is no shortage of news coming out of Washington, D.C. these days. But, what regulations will directly impact your business? During this session, our members will get the “inside baseball” scoop from Kevin Burch, the Immediate Past President of the American Trucking Association who has their “ear to the ground” in D.C. and will give you a playbook as to what to expect in the way of DOT regulations.


  • What DOT regulations are on the docket right now
  • What regulators are considering in the near future
  • How the current regulations up for comment can directly impact your business
  • How you can take action now to mitigate your exposure to these new and proposed regulations

11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Open Discussion

This session is set aside for you to raise any issue you would like and have the group provide their thoughts. This is an open forum to further discuss any item on the agenda or to bring up topics that are not on the agenda. Make sure to take notes during this session, you may find a perfect topic to suggest for the next NAW Roundtable.

12:00 PM – 12:45 PM
Joint Networking Lunch with CLO and HR Executives

This is the “halftime” period where you meet up with all of the Billion Dollar Company senior executives at this week’s Roundtable to compare ideas and benchmark across disciplines. All 3 groups: Operations, HR and CLO executives will attend this joint lunch.

1:00 PM – 2:00 PM

Closing Session & Discussion
“Warehouse Safety – More Than Just Words in the Handbook”

Justin Ganschow, CSP, CHMM, Caterpillar Safety Services

Ganschow_Headshot BW

Every member of the organization fulfills a specific function to get the job done, and yet all are expected to be “responsible for safety.” How each person interprets that expectation is largely influenced by what they perceive is most important to their boss.  Executives have a particularly wide scope of influence and accountability, so it is critical that they demonstrate commitment to safety through both words and actions, just as they do for production. It starts with leading by example, but true leadership goes beyond wearing proper PPE and ensuring others do the same. This session focuses on tactical activities for executives to create and sustain a culture of positive safety performance through leadership, communication, training, and recognition. Safety doesn’t just happen – it is built through trust, consistency, and accountability. Audience members will learn how to integrate these principles into their daily routines and performance cycles.


  • Learn the cultural trademarks of world-class safety organizations
  • Understand how to demonstrate visible commitment to safety
  • Gain perspective on how to positively hold employees accountable

2:00 PM – 2:30 PM
Set Agenda for Next Meeting Scheduled for May 15-16, 2018

2:30 PM

NAW Billion Dollar Operations Roundtable Participants, Fall 2017

The following wholesale distribution companies attended the previous NAW Billion Dollar Operations Roundtable:

  • ABC Supply
  • ADI (Honeywell)
  • Berlin Packaging
  • Boise Cascade
  • Border States Electric
  • Bunzl Distribution USA Inc
  • Cardinal Health Inc
  • Core Mark International Inc
  • Dawn Foods Products
  • Do it Best Corp
  • Dot Foods
  • Gordon Food Service
  • Graybar Electric Co Inc
  • HD Smith
  • Johnstone Supply
  • McKesson Distribution
  • MRC Global
  • Network Services Co
  • Patterson Companies
  • Poolcorp
  • PrimeSource
  • SRS Distribution
  • Uline
  • Vertiv
  • Victory Packaging
  • Weyerhaeuser Co

Meeting Location:
Chicago Hilton O’Hare
10000 W O’Hare Ave.               Hotel Accommodations
Chicago, IL 60666
(773) 686-8000