UMD Smith School of Business Honors Starbucks' Global Supply Chain Head

Oct 14, 2011, 12:14 ET from University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business

Annual industry event highlights careers, networking for supply chain management students

COLLEGE PARK, Md., Oct. 14, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business today named Peter Gibbons, executive vice president of Global Supply Chain Operations at Starbucks, as the 2011 "Person of the Year." Gibbons was recognized by students and faculty at Smith's Industry Day career and networking event, held annually to highlight the school's supply chain management program and build relationships with top companies.

Each year Smith students in the Supply Chain Management Society present the "Person of the Year" award to an influential industry leader at a ceremony to kick off Industry Day.

"Peter Gibbons is at the top of the supply chain industry and a great inspiration to our students," said G. "Anand" Anandalingam, dean of the Robert H. Smith School of Business. "The Smith School prides itself on the strength of its supply chain and logistics program, and this opportunity for our students to hear from and interact with a game-changer in a company they are all very familiar with is a great learning experience."

As Starbucks executive vice president of Global Supply Chain Operations, Gibbons is responsible for all of the products that contribute to what the company calls the "Starbucks Experience" – everything from the coffee in your cup, to the cup itself and the table it rests on – at every Starbucks store around the world.

Gibbons joined Starbucks in February 2007 and oversees the overall business management of the company's manufacturing, engineering, procurement, distribution, planning, transportation, inventory management and worldwide coffee and tea sourcing. This includes operation of Starbucks' global network of roasting plants in Kent, Wash.; York, Penn.; Carson Valley, Nev.; Sandy Run, S.C., Amsterdam, The Netherlands and the Tazo tea blending facility in Portland, Ore.

Gibbons' team works to ensure a long-term supply of quality products that enhance the customer experience while ensuring cost competiveness and efficiency. He is also responsible for helping Starbucks live up to its commitment to making a positive impact on the environment and in the communities where Starbucks products are sourced.

Gibbons started his career with ICI, a global chemical company. He then worked for the Scottish Development Agency before re-joining ICI working in a variety of operations, finance and IT roles for 18 years. He received his bachelor's degree in physics from the University of Edinburgh and his master's in business administration from the Strathclyde Business School in Glasgow, Scotland.

Smith's annual Industry Day is organized by students in the undergraduate Supply Chain Management Society and supply chain and logistics faculty. The event was sponsored by the Intermodal Association of North American (IANA) and Stanley Black & Decker. In addition to the award presentation honoring Gibbons, the day included a luncheon for employers, students and alumni and a career fair.  Representatives and recruiters from more than 25 companies participated in this year's event.

The Smith School has been honoring industry leaders with the "Person of the Year" for 19 years. Recent honorees include Mark Holifield, Home Depot's senior vice president of global supply chain; John T. "Jock" Menzies, chairman of the Terminal Corporation, a warehouse, trucking and distribution company; Rick Blasgen, president and CEO of the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals; John D. Porcari, now U.S. Deputy Secretary of Transportation.

The Smith School's logistics, transportation and supply chain management program is consistently recognized among the best business school programs in the country. U.S. News & World Report ranked the undergraduate program No. 9 in the United States in 2011. The Smith School launched a master's of business in supply chain program in fall 2011. Smith's supply chain management curriculum incorporates all aspects of the industry, including expanding global networks and cutting-edge technology. In addition to offering a range of academic courses, the school is home to the Supply Chain Management Center, which provides research, consulting services and education highlighting the latest advances in e-supply chain management. 

About the Robert H. Smith School of Business

The Robert H. Smith School of Business is an internationally recognized leader in management education and research. One of 12 colleges and schools at the University of Maryland, College Park, the Smith School offers undergraduate, full-time and part-time MBA, executive MBA, MS in business, PhD and executive education programs, as well as outreach services to the corporate community. The school offers its degree, custom and certification programs in learning locations in North America and Asia.

Carrie Handwerker

SOURCE University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business