Please fill out the form below and the IntelliTrans team will get in touch with you.

Celebrating HERstory: The Women Who Make Supply Chain Move

March is National Women's History Month, a time to celebrate the achievements and contributions of women in U.S. history. Designated by presidential proclamation, National Women’s History Month started as a single celebration that corresponded with International Women’s Day (March 8th), and the movement spread across the country as other communities initiated their own celebrations.

In 1980, a consortium of women’s groups and historians—led by the National Women’s History Project (now the National Women's History Alliance)—successfully lobbied for national recognition. In February 1980, President Jimmy Carter issued the first Presidential Proclamation declaring the Week of March 8th, 1980, as National Women’s History Week.

This year, IntelliTrans is pleased to showcase the significant contributions women have been making to the supply chain, logistics and transportation industries. Their presence continues to positively impact the sector as a whole, encourages women to explore new opportunities in supply chain and creates more diverse, inclusive work environments. 

According to Gartner, women now make up 41% of the supply chain workforce and represent 26% of leadership positions in the field.

“It’s particularly encouraging to see women make gains at the senior executive level,” said Caroline Chumakov, director analyst in the Gartner Supply Chain Practice, “as we know that when a woman holds the top supply chain position this has a positive correlation with more women in leadership and in all roles through that organization.”

Looking beyond the numbers, it’s clear that women are making a real impact on the way the supply chain operates. Here are two executives who shared their stories with us. 

A True Passion for Rail Logistics | Tiffany Lewis

Tiffany Lewis started her career in 2002 working for a rail-switching company inside of Dow in Midland, Mich. In 2011, she accepted a role within Dow Chemical’s Rail Logistics team as a rail fleet administrator. “I managed several different rail fleets, from general purpose tanks, to pressure cars and hopper cars,” says Lewis, NA logistics team leader (latex, plastics) at Trinseo, LLC.

After transitioning into a scheduling role with Dow Automotive—briefly moving away from rail responsibilities—Lewis’ passion for the sector drew her back in 2018 when she rejoined as a rail fleet manager. She later took on the role of outplant manager at Trinseo, where she efficiently managed 15 transload and warehouse facilities. “Additionally, I assumed responsibility for overseeing Trinseo’ s latex and plastic railcar fleets,” says Lewis, who in 2023 achieved a milestone when she was promoted to the position of North America logistics team leader.

In her current role, Lewis leads a team of seven logistics service representatives spanning various modes, including rail, bulk truck, packaging and marine, all while continuing to manage the company’s rail fleet. She ensures that logistics activities are performed safely and in an environmentally conscious way and in compliance with relevant regulations, industry standards, and Trinseo’s own policies.

Lewis also oversees Trinseo’s day-to-day logistics operations, including transportation, warehousing, and inventory management and ensures timely planning, loading, pickup and delivery of goods. She keeps internal parties informed of delays, serves as a point of contact for escalation, and collaborates with cross-functional teams to align logistics strategies with overall business objectives.

Like most companies right now, Trinseo is feeling the pinch of the constrained labor market. In fact, Lewis says hiring and retaining skilled professionals is her biggest challenge right now. Other issues include the need to constantly adapt to technological challenges and manage remote teams. “The shift to remote work has introduced new challenges related to team collaboration, communication and maintaining work-life balance,” she points out.

Reflecting on her 22 years of contributing to the supply chain industry, Lewis says more women have entered the field and taken on various roles—from logistics and procurement to strategic planning and leadership positions. “Women have also made strides in attaining senior and executive-level positions within supply chain organizations,” she adds. “Companies are recognizing the value of diverse leadership teams and are actively promoting and hiring women into key roles.”

Lewis says many organizations in the supply chain sector have recognized the importance of fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace, and have rolled out initiatives and programs designed to encourage women to pursue careers in supply chain management. “Educational programs and networking events focused on women in supply chain management have emerged, providing a platform for knowledge-sharing, mentorship and collaboration,” says Lewis.

To women who are considering a career in supply chain, logistics and/or transportation, Lewis says it’s important to understand that your unique perspective and skills contribute to the richness of the supply chain industry. Build a strong support network, stay committed to your professional development, focus on continuous learning and seek out mentorship opportunities. “Show initiative and leadership, advocate for yourself, embrace change and challenges,” she advises. “Be resilient and strive for a healthy work-life balance.”

Putting in the Work | Tamika Lomax

Tamika Lomax has been working in the transportation sector since 2005, when she accepted a customer service representative position at UPS, where she handled shipments that required same-day service. From there she took on operational roles like logistics administrator, logistics specialist and account manager with other transportation providers.

Lomax joined Clearwater Paper Corporation, where she’s currently a transportation analyst, in 2015 as a transportation coordinator. When an opening on the company’s transportation services team as a transportation services associate opened up, Lomax moved into that position. Within one year she was promoted to transportation analyst on the same team, and she’s been growing professionally ever since.

Today, Lomax leads projects for new platforms to support the company’s transportation business and manages carrier contracts, freight payments and carrier onboarding. She’s also an over-the-road trucking subject matter expert and team development trainer. She says meeting deadlines while also staying on top of daily tasks along with finding time to develop her own professional skills can be challenging.

“I tackle these by managing my calendar, blocking out time for projects, focusing on personal growth and then following through instead of just ‘dismissing’ reminders,” says Lomax, who is pleased to see more women in senior management positions in her field these days. “Seeing mentally-strong, intelligent women get more opportunities to help supply chain businesses grow gives us more of a visual that it can happen for us if we put in the work.”

Knowing that moving up the ladder can be difficult for anyone in any industry sector, Lomax says her best piece of advice is to continue developing your skills and learning from others around you. Be confident in the work you do, she adds, and don’t be afraid of challenges or stepping up in uncomfortable roles that you normally wouldn’t do.

“Give yourself a chance to learn and grow in those roles that will challenge you,” Lomax says. “This will give you the chance to let the people around you—and within your organization—really see what you have to offer.”

Want to read more content like this? Check out our previous blog Amazing Women in Supply Chain.