D'Amore-McKim School of Business Professor of Supply Chain Management Robert Lieb was recently given the 2016 Thinkers and Movers award from DSC Logistics, a leading third party logistics (3PL) company. Lieb founded and designed the D'Amore-McKim undergraduate and graduate programs in logistics and supply chain management, both being one of the first of their kind in the country.

The DSC Logistics award recognizes Lieb's outstanding contributions and strong influence on the field of supply chain management. The company created the award in 2009 to recognize individuals whose pioneering leadership have resulted in groundbreaking findings and impact on the field and how it operates. Lieb joins a list of accomplished practitioners, leaders, and educators who have guided the field in various ways.

“By giving this award, DSC acknowledges the linkage between the academic and professional worlds,” said Lieb. “It should be a two directional connection and this shows that connection, which I think is really important.”

Practice-based research has been steadfast in Lieb's career. His deep connection to the field for the past 46 years and constant dialogue with practitioners informs his research and in turn provides invaluable industry insights. His well-regarded annual 3PL CEO surveys  – of which 23 have been produced – identify trends, forecast issues, compile important data and spot competitors, as he predicted Amazon would be more than five years ago.

“I always wanted to do applied research that people could actually use; that was my strategy when I came to the school,” said Lieb. “I wanted to create research that would highlight knowledge of what is going on in the field and in turn have companies want to hire our students.”

Lieb continues to advance his field of study at D'Amore-McKim. Undergraduate and graduate concentrations are offered in supply chain management, and all students are required to take an introductory course in the field as part of their program. His thought leadership bridges the academic and business worlds while shaping the minds of future supply chain management leaders.

“Bob has worked passionately to develop our supply chain curriculum and to provide career advancement opportunities for our students,” said Senior Associate Dean of Faculty and Research Emery Trahan. “The annual Supply Chain Expo that Bob and his colleagues organize connects industry leaders with our undergraduate and graduate students in a high-energy environment. This is a well-deserved honor for Bob, providing external recognition of his many significant contributions to and impact on the profession over many years.”

Story by Brittany Santoro