All posts by Marion Donahue

About Marion Donahue

Biographical Info Here

Meet our new Director of Business Development

Columbian Logistics Network




Please join us in welcoming our new Director of Business Development, Hollis Pace.

Hollis lives in Saint Joseph, MI and will primarily work out Columbian Logistics Networkof the office due to the nature of this position.

Hollis graduated from Michigan State University in 2000 with a degree in Supply Chain Management. After college, he started at Penske Logistics as Inventory Control Specialist, then was promoted to Lead Logistics Analyst. Later, he worked at DHL Express in Aurora, Colorado as a Field Services Specialist. Before joining us, he worked for Hanson Logistics in a variety of positions; Account Manager, Operations Manager, Director of Transportation, and Director of Transportation Sales. We are excited to have his broad background and experience on our team!

Welcome to the team, Hollis!

Carrier Management Tips

Congratulations! You have successfully executed your Request for Proposal (RFP) event and contracted all of your new carriers. You have even acquired some pricing locked in for two years. All of your plant locations have routing instructions, and your vendors are onboard with entering your inbound material shipments into your Enterprise Resource Planning’s (ERP) transportation module for automatic carrier selection and tendering.

Your freight is ready to be moved within the model you have set up. You have spent a significant amount of time on network design, planning, procurement, and contracting. Then suddenly, you realize that you did not clearly and formally define expectations for performance, measures, score-carding, communication, performance improvement, and corrective action. How will you control this beast?

First, do some reflection on your business. What value, service, or product are you selling to your clients? Is the nature of your market place and competition dynamic with compressed timelines and high volatility or is it more relaxed with a slow-boat modus operandi? This element and many other business rules will determine how you choose to measure performance and success in your supply chain. Functional areas from Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) integration, freight invoicing, status tracking, timely acceptance of orders and load tenders, and communication of all information related to your supply chain is fair game when considering how to manage relationships with carriers.

The key to keeping a strong and positive relationship with your carrier partners is setting realistic expectations early enough in the procurement process. Make sure to have clear expectations for measurement types and frequency, time period, intent of the program, improvement, and corrective action processes toward mutual benefit. If there is value to the partner beyond retention of your business, you will be much more successful.

Carrier Management

American Heart Association FUNdraising

Columbian Logistics - Heart Month Collage

February is designated ‘Heart Month’ by the American Heart Association, and Columbian Logistics Network employees engaged in a variety of fundraising and awareness activities to help strike out heart disease. A  company wide 50/50 raffle, Bowl-A-Thon, and ‘Pie Your Manager’ challenge raised a total of $2,801 for the American Heart Association!

Extra special thanks go to the Columbian Human Resource Team, who organized and ran all of the Heart Month Events. Thank you Jilia, Chris and Julie!!

If you have questions about Columbian Logistics American Heart Association Fundraising efforts, please contact Jilia Hagen at

Click here to watch the video! 

customer servicce

Columbian Scores 100% on Audit

The Columbian Distribution Services (CDS) division recently scored a perfect 100% on a rigorous customer audit.  The customer, who prefers to remain anonymous, performs semi-annual unannounced (surprise!) audits of our facility, processes, and systems.  The all-day audit covers 8 key aspects of warehouse operations: Physical Security & Monitoring, Electronic Monitoring, Access Control, Product Storage, Operational Documentation, Warehouse Operation Processes, Administrative Operations, and Physical Inventory.

While the CDS crew has consistently earned satisfactory marks over the years, this is the second year in a row they’ve achieved a perfect score.  Bill Ekberg, senior facility manager, had this to say about the score:

“The audit has changed over the last few years.  It used to measure how your operation looked on that day, but now it measures your operational performance over time.  It’s much tougher to pass, let alone earn a perfect score.  This accomplishment is a testament to the day-to-day rigor with which we treat this customer’s business.”