What is a typical day like in your job?
Since we’re now focused on category management, each buyer is responsible for a specific commodity category or set of commodities. ConnectCarolina maps category codes to a specific buyer so that requisitions drop in each buyer’s queue throughout the day. I typically go through my queue each day starting in the morning and working throughout the day. My categories include scientific and medical research consumables and supplies (including chemicals and gases), maintenance agreements on scientific and medical research equipment, and energy related products and services. I communicate and interact frequently throughout the day with my campus customers and with vendors. My job also includes negotiating contract terms and conditions with various vendors. I’ve actually purchased many different commodity categories throughout my career at UNC-Chapel Hill, including athletics supplies and equipment (Boshamer Stadium Scoreboard!), printing services, IT hardware and software, and scientific and medical equipment.
How does your job support Carolina’s mission?
I primarily support the University’s research mission by supplying campus labs and Principal Investigators (PIs) with lab consumables and supplies needed for research. A few years back we established our scientific supplier campus-wide contract with Fisher Scientific for scientific consumables, supplies and equipment. There are now several scientific suppliers on our ePro platform, and we’re planning to expand that offering in the future.
What do you like most about your work?
I really enjoy helping my campus customers acquire the products and services they need to support their research objectives. I feel like I’m helping them in a small way to be successful in their research.
What is something people probably wouldn’t know about you, or another fun item you’d like to share?
I spent 16 years in the Naval Reserve after seven years on active duty. During those 16 years, I was deployed twice. I deployed to Defense Contract Management Command Southern Europe and during that time spent a month in Albania living in a tent on an old, dilapidated Soviet era airbase. There aren’t too many who served in the Navy that worked in Albania and Macedonia. I also deployed to Joint Contracting Command Iraq/Afghanistan in Baghdad in 2007. That was my last deployment. Also, I’m an avid Disc Golfer!