Joey Williams, a warehouse manager for Atlanta, Georgia, USA-headquartered Nordic Logistics & Warehousing, LLC, received the first ever Global NextGen Award during the closing general session of the 124th Convention & Expo of the International Association of Refrigerated Warehouse-World Food Logistics Organization (IARW-WFLO), held recently in Orlando, Florida.
The competition, organized by the Alexandria, Virginia-based Global Cold Chain Alliance (GCCA), is among outstanding young professionals in the global cold chain sector. Finalists were recipients of industry awards that recognized exceptional achievements made in specific regions or countries. Nominees were put forward by national refrigerated warehousing organizations to compete for the top honor.
Ivan Sutic, financial director at Chilleweni Cold Storage, represented the Republic of South Africa as the recipient of the South African Refrigerated Distribution Association’s (SARDA) Peter Worthington-Smith Award, which salutes the stellar performance of a young person in that nation’s cold chain.
Jeffrey Tusa, project manager at Polar Fresh Cold Chain Services, was the recipient of the Refrigerated Warehouse and Transportation Association of Australia’s (RWTA) 2014 Frank Vale Award acknowledging young talent in the Australian cold chain industry.
Winner Joey Williams, representing North America, was the recipient of the 2015 IARW-WFLO Don Schlimme Future Leader Award.
“I am continuously impressed by the quality and dedication that our young professionals exhibit in this industry,” said Frank Plant, immediate past chairman of the WFLO and president of San Diego Cold Storage. “This GCCA Global NextGen Award celebrates young professionals from around the world and the important role they and the entire cold storage industry play in providing safe and quality food to a growing global population.”
The NextGen Award was established this year to annually acknowledge talented young people who have demonstrated to employers their potential to become future leaders and make positive contributions to the development of the sector. Among other eligibility requirements for the prize, nominees had to demonstrate excellence on the job, the potential to excel further in many facets within the industry, and possess insight into their organization’s strategic values and direction, policies and ways of working.
As part of the selection process, a panel of cold chain leaders from around the world interviewed each nominee. Candidates were judged on their knowledge level of the industry, track record of excellence, communication skills and leadership abilities. In addition, each contender delivered a five-minute presentation to the jurists and to IARW-WFLO Convention & Expo attendees.
As the winner of the Global NextGen Award, Williams will receive a travel stipend of up to $2,500 to attend a GCCA or GCCA partner event anywhere in the world in 2015-16. In addition, he was presented with an engraved 2015 GCCA Global NextGen Award trophy.