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Holcomb is the 84th recipient of the J. Shipman Gold Medal Award,
receiving that award in 2015. The award is presented professionals whose
unselfish, sincere and persistent efforts have aided the advancement of
the supply management field. It is the highest honor awarded by the
Institute for Supply Management (ISM). ISM Manufacturing Index is one of
the key national indicators used by the US Federal Reserve economists
and Wall Street Investors to gauge and forecast business conditions.
Holcomb has held executive procurement and supply management positions at Dean Foods Company, Royal Group Technologies, Waste Management, American Precision Industries, and Praxair. His mission has been to build high-performance teams and broaden the role of procurement to substantially reduce costs and create a competitive advantage.
In his last role as chief procurement officer, Holcomb was a senior
vice president at Dean Foods, where he transformed and broadened the
role of procurement and reduced costs to help fund innovation and
growth. He executed a broad strategic sourcing program, drove
simplification and standardization, and streamlined the supply base,
resulting in a measurable competitive cost advantage. Dean Foods,
headquartered in Dallas, is one of the nation’s leading food and
beverage companies, producing a full line of dairy and soy products,
with more than 100 plants in the United States and more than 26,000
Before joining Royal, Holcomb was the vice president and chief procurement officer for Waste Management Inc. Over the course of five years, he helped achieve a major corporate turnaround by building a high-performance procurement team and delivering world-class results. These results were documented in a 2005 cover story in Purchasing magazine, and he also received the Chairman’s Award for his team’s contributions. Waste Management is North America’s largest waste disposal company, headquartered in Houston.
Holcomb’s career began at Eastman Kodak Company, where he held
numerous management and leadership positions, including (1) general
manager, digital products manufacturing, (2) general manager,
international digital products marketing and sales, (3) director,
corporate commercial affairs, and (4) director, supplier relationship
management. His final assignment at Kodak was to re-engineer global
procurement to leverage the size and scope of the entire company. The
success of this effort laid the foundation for the next twenty years of
Holcomb’s career, as he was next recruited to Praxair as vice president
and chief procurement officer, and later to American Precision
Industries in the same role.
Holcomb has written numerous articles on procurement trends and
leadership opportunities and has lectured at Arizona State University,
Michigan State University, and Rochester Institute of Technology.
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Last Updated: November 22, 2018.