2017 Opportunity Exchange


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Stephanie Burton

Stephanie M. Burton has been with Toyota since 1996.  Currently, she is a Manager in the Supplier Diversity group where her responsibilities include engaging with key internal and external stakeholders to advance Toyota’s initiatives in supplier diversity.  Stephanie is regularly engaging in the development and sourcing of minority business enterprises (MBEs) and women business enterprises (WBEs).  A graduate of Xavier University, Mrs. Burton has previously held roles within Toyota Purchasing for Procurement, Project Management and Purchasing Systems. She lives with her husband in Southeast Michigan.

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Joe Johnson

Dr. Joe Johnson is known around the country as Joe Johnson Speaks. Presenting keynotes, trainings, webinars, live events, and much more tailored to fit his client's needs; his credibility comes from over 20 years of working with individuals and professional organizations. From elementary school students, to corporate and entrepreneurial business leaders, Dr. Joe has a unique ability to engage, excite, and ignite purposeful thinking, acting, and living in business and life. Through authenticity, humor, and honesty, his messages touch the heart, soul, and mind of his listeners.

When he fully accepted his responsibility of thinking, acting, and living purposefully, he was able to set himself up for the lifestyle he deserves and begin to help other's do the same. When he started Joe Johnson Group, his gift of speaking and training individuals in K-12 and college settings allowed him to travel the country and impact students and professionals. Since, Johnson has graduated to the corporate and entrepreneur spaces.

Because of his unique combination of natural common sense, street smarts, and academic knowledge, he has been trained to identify the gaps and needs of individuals and organizations. Recognizing the need for individuals to reconnect with themselves in order to thrive in their business, career, and life, Dr. Joe authored the book "Pursue Your Purpose Not Your Dreams" to help individuals with this process. He's developed curriculums, online programs, provides peak performance coaching, and also consults with education professionals, businesses, and entrepreneurs.

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Charles J. Hendrix
Assigned to this role in January of 2015, this marks Hendrix’s second term of continuing to build Toyota’s supplier diversity processes, including the sourcing and development of minority business enterprises (MBEs) and women business enterprises (WBEs). He previously held this positon from 1997-2000.
Since beginning his career with Toyota in 1996, Hendrix has held several managerial positions within Toyota’s Purchasing division including Project Management, Education & Development, Systems and Strategy, as well as the procurement of component parts within the Chassis department. He also served as Corporate Diversity Manager where he was responsible for advancing Toyota’s overall diversity initiatives.

Prior to Toyota, Hendrix worked at Honda of America Manufacturing where he was Purchasing Assistant Manager for plastics and interior component parts.

Hendrix is also active in his community, he is the founder and president of the Union (KY) Jaguars Football Association, where he is responsible for the development of middle school football players in the Cooper High School District. He is also a Varsity Assistant Coach for the Cooper High School football team.

Originally from Columbus, Ohio, Hendrix is a graduate of Idaho State University where he earned his degree in Management & Organization.
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Phala Mire

Phala Kimbrough Mire is the President & CEO of the Women’s Business Enterprise Council South (WBEC South), a regional partner organization of the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC). A non-profit Executive for over 20 years, Mire currently orchestrates business growth and certification programs for women owned businesses in the five state region covering Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee and the Florida Panhandle. Representing over 800 certified suppliers, Mire is a renowned advocate and thought leader on entrepreneurship, diversity and inclusion and women’s business issues.


Prior to her work at WBEC South, she led both the Louisiana and Southern Region Minority Supplier Development Councils of NMSDC. Her accomplishments there included raising the Council’s network rating from 34th to the Top Ten and tripling revenues within her first three years. She simultaneously operated an MBDA Center for eight years, oversaw the recovery of Council operations in the wake of Hurricane Katrina and led the successful merger of the Louisiana, Arkansas-Mississippi and Alabama affiliate councils to form the new Southern Region MSDC in 2015.


Mire has served on numerous boards and commissions, most recently as a Mayor’s appointee to the New Orleans Library Commission and the New Orleans 2018 Foundation; and a Governors appointee to the Louisiana Economic Development Small Business Task Force, where she serves as Co-chair. A graduate of Tulane University and a mother of three, Mire is co-founder and principal strategist of the Bigger Discussion Panel Series on the Future of Supplier Diversity which has amassed over 70,000 YouTube views, making them the most watched videos on Supplier Diversity to date.

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Angela Henderson
Angela D. Henderson is the Senior Purchasing Manager for Supplier Diversity Development at Ford Motor Company. In this role, she is responsible for delivering Ford’s mission of promoting the economic empowerment and sustainability of diverse communities through the creation of wealth. She will accomplish this by connecting minority-owned, women-owned, veteran-owned, and other diverse companies with Ford and our Tier 1 suppliers.

She most recently served as the Global Commodity Lead Purchasing Manager for Seats, a position Henderson held for 9 months. Within that time, she developed a global negotiation strategy proforma that was rolled out for all of Purchasing, managed the initial development of purchasing strategies for Seats JIT, Trim, Foam & Structures commodities, as well as supported the sourcing efforts and target setting for future model programs.

Henderson has 10 years experience in Purchasing where she was the Purchasing Program Manager for EcoSport, Super Duty, and Fiesta as well as Central Buyer for Powertrain Ignition Components. She has led global teams in both Commodity and Program Purchasing to deliver and exceed objectives in support of the One Ford plan.

Her international experience includes extended travel assignments in Cuautitlan, Mexico (2009/10), Cologne, Germany (2010-11) as well as a 3-year expat assignment most recently in Brazil (2014-2016), where she co-led the Program Purchasing team in planning, sourcing and launching the EcoSport for six regions (South America, India, China, North America, Europe, & Russia).

Henderson began her automotive career at Ford as a Body Construction Engineer in 1999. During her tenure in Manufacturing, she successfully completed training and certification in eight engineering disciplines (Global 8D, FMEA, PCM, ED, SEF, MREL, PREL, SPC) as well as training in the Program Management Professional (PMP) certification program. She also spent time in Product Development where she was a Project Management Engineer & Program Management Analyst. Her experiences in these positions taught her to drive a program management and manufacturing mindset in every position she has held within Purchasing.
Understanding the value of connecting with people one-on-one to drive change, facilitate clear communication, and in turn, gain a level of understanding essential for individual and collective growth and success, service and mentoring is at the forefront of Angela’s professional DNA and brand.
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Reggie Humphrey is the Senior Manager of Supplier Diversity at General Motors and joined the team in July 2012. He is responsible for managing GM’s supplier diversity process of inclusion, which consists of over 300 certified diverse suppliers. Reggie began his career journey in 1995 as a Production Supervisor at the Moraine Assembly Center in Moraine, OH. In 1998, he relocated to the Detroit metro area and has since worked in several operational and planning capacities in multiple organizations including; Order Fulfillment, Supply Chain, Global Purchasing, and Logistics.

In addition to Reggie’s core responsibilities, he serves as a voluntary board member for several organizations including the Michigan Minority Supplier Development Council, WBE Canada, Canadian Aboriginal and Minority Supplier Council, and Chairman of the Great Lakes Women’s Business Council.
Reggie also serves as the President of the NMSDC Automotive Industry Group and Advisory Board Chairman for the Tuck School Minority Business Executive Programs at Dartmouth College.

Reggie was recently recognized as the 2017 WBENC National Corporate Advocate of the Year, 2016 Emerging Leader from the Rainbow Push Coalition, 2015 NMSDC Minority Supplier Development Leader of the Year, 2015 GLWBC Corporate Champion of the Year, 2015 Global Community Service Award from the Ajamu Group and the 2015 MMSDC President’s Award. In addition, GM has recently received the following awards under his leadership:

• 2017 Corporation of the Year- Great Lakes Women’s Business Council (GLWBC)
• 2017 Corporation of the Year- Michigan Black Chamber of Commerce (MBCC)
• 2017/16 WBENC Top Corporation-Gold
• 2016 Corporation of the Year: MMSDC, MHCC, and APACC
• 2016/15 NMSDC Corporation of the Year: Category Award for Supplier Development
• 2016/15/14 “Best in Class -Excellence in Supplier Diversity” by GLWBC

Reggie holds a B.S. in Finance from Alabama A&M University and a M.S.A. from Central Michigan University.
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Lottie Robertson
As a graduate of Michigan State University with a Bachelor of Science in Packaging Engineering, Lottie Robertson began her career in the Automotive Industry the same year, earning a position as Senior Project Management Analyst at Ford Motor Company. During this time, she was able to gain technical skills as well as expertise in program management and leadership. It was this which led her to return to her education and obtain a Masters of Business Administration in Finance and Management from Wayne State University in 2006.

Since then, Lottie has been engaged in the process of developing her management skills further, utilizing them in the improvement of businesses ranging from Mayfield Gentry Realty Advisors to Project L.I.V.E. Housing and Urban Development Agency. In each of these positions she took on the role of Director of Project Management, managing assets and budgets in excess of $750,000.

In 2011, Lottie was presented with an opportunity to join the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, LLC as a Program Manager in Powertrain Engineering. This required the review and consideration of prototype and engineering, research and development costs. Later in the same year, Lottie was appointed as Program Manager of Supplier Diversity within the Purchasing and Supplier Quality Organization.

In this role, Lottie was responsible for creating diversity sourcing targets as well as publishing internal reports for presentation to senior leadership. As a direct result of her success, she was able to reach overachievement of the Tier I spending goal by $156 million and the Tier II spending goal by $580 million. In addition, she was responsible for the oversight of the diverse spend for approximately 5,000 suppliers.

In 2013, she was promoted within the company to Manager, Head of Product Development Purchasing, responsible for program managers and the oversight of the timing, variable and investment costs and quality for approximately seven vehicles in the FCA product lineup. She also led a team of approximately 25 individuals responsible for increasing vehicle capacity which resulted in the implementation of 20 new process improvement actions, 260,000 incremental units produced and an increase in revenue of $600 million in 2015.
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Jim Holloway
Jim Holloway is General Manager of Supplier Relations. Mr. Holloway is responsible for overseeing Supplier Diversity, Risk Management, Systems and Supplier Relations.

Prior to his current position, he was General Manager of Procurement Department 3 responsible for overseeing the procurement of chassis, powertrain, service and export, prototype and trial parts for Toyota in North America. Previous roles include General Manager of Procurement Department 2, responsible for overseeing the procurement of interior and exterior parts and resin raw materials for Toyota in North America and Manager, Corporate Strategy Division where his responsibilities included mid to long term business planning and new plant start-up activity.

Mr. Holloway has a Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance from the University of Kentucky.
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Robert Young
Robert Young is the Group Vice President of purchasing, supplier engineering development, and cost planning at Toyota, located in Erlanger, Kentucky and York Township, Michigan. He is responsible for all direct and indirect manufacturing procurement in North America and leads Toyota’s supplier diversity initiatives in the U.S. and Canada.

Mr. Young joined Toyota in 1995 and has held multiple positions within the purchasing division including general manager of vehicle parts and materials purchasing.

Mr. Young is currently serving on the board of the Michigan Minority Supplier Development Council (MMSDC) and is on the Executive Committee of SPARK Ann Arbor.

Mr. Young has a B.S. in Business Administration from Indiana University.
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Wil James

In July 2010, Wil James became the seventh president of Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky, Inc. (TMMK). He leads Toyota's largest automotive manufacturing plant in the world, which produces the Camry, America’s best-selling car; Avalon; and the ES 350, the only U.S.-produced Lexus.  Additionally, James champions quality initiatives for Toyota’s fourteen North American manufacturing plants.

James’ career with Toyota began in 1987, supervising a team of about 20 people. He has since served in senior leadership positions at three of Toyota’s U.S. plants, including TMMK, a $6 billion operation which directly employs more than 8,000 people.

James lends his personal talents in service to several civic and community organizations, including serving as Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce in 2015.  He is also a board member of the Bluegrass Economic Advancement Movement, the National Urban League and Central Bank. James is active in the Executive Leadership Council and Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity. Additionally, he has been named one of the Top 100 Most Influential Blacks in Corporate America. 

A native of Norfolk, Virginia, James received his Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering Technology from Old Dominion University in 1978. Additionally, in 2013, James received an honorary doctorate of engineering from the University of Kentucky in recognition of his life’s work, and his leadership with Toyota.  In 2015, James also received an honorary degree from the University of Pikeville.

He and his wife, Michaelene, reside in Lexington, Kentucky, which places him close to his children and their families.

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Jen Groover
Jen Groover has been tagged by SUCCESS MAGAZINE as a “One-Woman Brand,” a “Creativity and Innovation Guru” and a leading “Serial Entrepreneur” by Entrepreneur Magazine and ranked #8 by SAP in the Top 51 Influencers of Human Potential. Jen Groover’s name has become synonymous with innovation, entrepreneurship and transformation. She was recently nominated as a UN delegate to the first ever Global Accelerator for the Global Entrepreneurs Council. She also made history at the NYSE, as a member of the first all-female group to ring the opening bell, made Forbes’ list of “50 Founders You Need to Follow on Twitter” and was nominated “TV Personality of The Year Award” in 2013 by Savor the Success.

Jen’s energy and multi-faceted, diverse wisdom make her a highly sought after international speaker for Fortune 500 companies to top Universities, Non-Profits, Chamber of Commerces, Business Conferences, and more, on topics ranging from business to leadership, empowerment to emotional intelligence to healthy living, and enhancing productivity.

Jen has been a top business and lifestyle contributor and content creator for major television networks such as ABC, CBS, CNBC, NBC, MSNBC, Fox News, Fox Business News, and The CW. Jen also contributes editorial pieces to several prominent business magazines and online resources including The Huffington Post, Entrepreneur Magazine, Inc Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, Positively Positive, The Daily Love, and HealthyStyle NY. Her products, brand and work have been featured in hundreds of media outlets including O! The Oprah Magazine, Redbook, People, US Weekly, SUCCESS and Forbes.

Coming in the Fall of 2017, Jen will be releasing three books - a relaunch of her best-selling What If? & Why Not?, with updated resources, The Operators Manual for Life, and #Empowered (based on her PBS Special), with Make this Matter & CO Publishing.