EPIC Awards Salute the Year’s Best in Procurement

By Susan Avery

March 07, 2017 at 1:43 PM

2016 EPIC Awards logo.jpg“Procurement provides a wealth of opportunities…. You can have tremendous impact and it can be very rewarding. I say this from the heart as I have lived it myself.” 

So says Kevin Giblin, Head of Global Sourcing and Chief Procurement Officer at Dun & Bradstreet—and recipient of the 2017 Excellence in Purchasing Indirect Categories Career Award. 

Giblin received the award during a luncheon ceremony during ProcureCon Indirect East in Orlando recently. The EPIC Awards is a collaboration of ProcureCon and My Purchasing Center, the online publication for procurement professionals, to recognize professional achievement in procurement of complex categories such as human resources, marketing, travel, legal, professional services and many others.

The EPIC Career Award is one of six presented by ProcureCon and My Purchasing Center. The other awards are Rising Star, Team, Individual, Innovator and Supplier.

EPIC Career

The EPIC Career Award honors an individual for achievement throughout his or her career. 

At Dun & Bradstreet, Kevin Giblin leads a team that manages $.6 billion in spend across all categories and complexities, defining sourcing strategies and establishing ongoing Supplier Relationship Management to ensure continuous supplier value. He oversees the Oracle Procure to Pay team and end-to-end transaction process. 

Previously, Giblin was Senior Director of Global Sourcing & Procurement for McGraw Hill Financial, where he led the implementation of Ariba sourcing, procure-to-pay and contract management tools. He received a Corporate Achievement Award for his innovative approach to sourcing editorial services, and was recognized for developing strategic offshore supplier relationships. In an earlier role, Giblin served as Strategic Sourcing Manager for Siemens N.A. Under his leadership, Siemens became one of the first diversified global services companies to implement an end to end e-procurement solution for contingent labor.

Long a champion of the procurement profession, Giblin has worked to develop future leaders. He was an executive mentor and has implemented a Sourcing & Procurement Internship program, bringing on students from such supply chain university programs such as Penn State, Rutgers, Michigan State, George Washington, and James Madison, who have moved on to leadership roles in companies such as JP Morgan, Apple, SAP, Verizon, HP, and Dow Jones. He has also been an active member of the Institute for Supply Management, speaks at conferences and writes articles for professional procurement publications. 

EPIC Rising Star

Nominated by a manager or mentor, the EPIC Rising Star Award recognizes an individual who is fairly new to indirect procurement and shows promise in his or her career. This year’s EPIC Rising Star Award goes to Eric Butts, Sourcing Analyst at Hanover Insurance. Kevin Ertel, Sourcing Director, Claims & Shared Services at Hanover Insurance, nominated Butts. 

“Eric personifies the future caliber of business capabilities that positions Sourcing as the leading enabler of business change,” says Ertel of his nominee. “Eric is most passionate about making those around him better, whether they be peers, business partners, or even suppliers. His ultimate goal is to build a team of top sourcing and procurement talent to drive change at a world class organization through Strategic Sourcing.”

With a degree in Economics from the College of the Holy Cross, Butts went to work in Hanover’s Strategic Sourcing Office as part of Hanover’s Future Leaders Program, which hires newly graduated high potential individuals. He quickly took the lead on several important sourcing projects and eventually assumed responsibility for portfolio management of multiple categories. He has received positive feedback from senior leaders within business units he supports and is seen as valuable resource and advisor.

One of the more competitive EPICs is the Team Award and this year is no exception. The 2017 Recipient is the Procure-to-Pay Operations team at Unum. Phil Westhoff, Assistant Vice President, Procure to Pay Operations at Unum, accepted the award for the team. 

The Unum Procure-to-Pay Operations (P2PO) team received the award for partnering with 10,000 Unum business and 2,600 supplier partners to transform the way the company procures and pays its $550 million in annual goods and services, from a cumbersome manual process to an automated “touch-less” way to procure and pay. 

The 2017 EPIC Individual Award recipient is Ellen Gossett, Head of Global Indirect Procurement at Sitel. She earned the prize for building a global indirect procurement organization in line with the company’s vision for a centralized procurement organization which reduces waste and puts governance and fiduciary controls in place. 

Not only did she develop the processes, the spend discipline and the team but she also implemented a global shared services organization to perform back office functions. Today, her team manages an annual global spend of approximately $500 million, earning Gossett a seat within the executive leadership team at Sitel. 

For designing an e-commerce system—and creating a comparative shopping experience—Veronica Gomez, Software Specialist III for the City of El Paso (Texas), receives the 2017 EPIC Innovator Award.

Greg Tennyson, Chief Procurement Officer at VSP Global nominated Scout RFP for the 2017 EPIC Supplier Award. Stan Garber, President of Scout, accepted for the company. 

Watch My Purchasing Center and ProcureCon for information on the 2018 EPIC Awards. The two will begin taking nominations in early September, 2017.

2017 EPIC Award Criteria 

My Purchasing Center and ProcureCon announced the first EPIC Awards competition in 2012, presenting the honor at ProcureCon Indirect East every year since then. For this year’s competition, the two began accepting nominations in the fall of 2016 for EPIC Individual, Team, Rising Star, Supplier, Innovator and Career Awards.

The criteria are tough. EPIC Award recipients must demonstrate professional excellence at: 

  • Aligning with corporate goals and helping to advance strategic initiatives
  • Identifying challenges, developing a plan to meet them and working to exceed expectations
  • Encouraging suppliers to be innovative and meet stakeholder goals
  • Measuring effectiveness and delivering value

The 2017 EPIC Awards Judges

To select the recipients of the EPIC Awards, My Purchasing Center put together a panel of CPOs, leaders in procurement representing the ProcureCon board of directors and the My Purchasing Center Editorial Advisory Board and past EPIC Award recipients. The 2017 EPIC Awards judges are: 

  • Viet Ho, Chief Procurement Officer and Managing Director at Russell Investments
  • Joanna Martinez, Founder at Supply Chain Advisors
  • Peter Portanova, Media Sourcing Lead at Shire
  • Brent Shinall,Vice President, Strategic Supply Chain and Procurement at Digital Realty  
  • Greg Tennyson, Chief Procurement Officer at VSP Global
  • Scott Wilkerson, Vice President, Enterprise Sourcing at McKesson
  • Frank Musero, Divisional Director at ProcureCon Events 
  • Susan Avery, Editorial Director at My Purchasing Center 

Also see the My Purchasing Center articles, 2016 EPIC Awards Recognize Indirect Procurement Value and EPIC Awards Recipients Tops in Procurement




Tags: purchasing MRO indirect Careers Procurement sourcing epic awards
Category: News Article

Susan Avery


Susan Avery is Editor-in-Chief at My Purchasing Center. She writes articles, blogs and white papers and manages and creates other content for the online procurement and supply management publication. She produces and moderates roundtable discussions, podcasts, webcasts and video interviews. Susan has 30 years experience covering procurement and supply management for Purchasing magazine and Purchasing.com. 

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