Annual Saint Patrick’s Day Scavenger Hunt

Once again this year, we had a lively break in the middle of the afternoon to participate in the annual St. Patrick’s Day Scavenger Hunt and potluck pitch-in.

Just a few of the BRT Peeps in green – including Peter O’Donnell, VP of merger integration from SpartanNash, wearing his Ireland jacket

Prior to Friday’s hunt, team members were asked to provide two facts their co-workers may not know about themselves, to be used as clues during the scavenger hunt. Associates were placed on teams comprised of one person from each department to encourage team building and getting to know others they may not interact with day to day.

Teams were asked to choose a captain and a team name and were given 5 clues.  Nine teams competed with teams names such as, “No Lucks Given”, “The Celtics”, and “The Killians”. Everyone was to walk around and find the individuals who matched the clues.  Teams completed their hunt once all 5 clues were matched with the correct BRT team member.


View many more fun photos on our Facebook Page and check out the scavenger hunt live action video on our YouTube Channel!


Employee Appreciation Day at BRT

BRT wouldn’t let National Employee Appreciation Day on Friday March 3rd end without showing our team members how much we appreciate all they do.

Each team member was given a raffle ticket for our table of give-aways and each team member was given an additional raffle ticket for the two GRAND prizes:  A day off with pay and 2 Pacers Game Tickets to the March 8th game against the Detroit Pistons.


Members of the Leadership team drew names throughout the day and we had 20 winners in all taking home swag such as branded hats, T-shirts, tumblers, blankets, golf shirts, and coozies.

Our 3rd winner, Leanne Coomes, Account Manager, draws the 4th winner from Jamie Meyer, Dir. of HR

Katie Caito, Business Development Representative & our 5th winner draws for the 6th winner

Our 6th winner, Erich Hofmann, Senior SCA Analyst, draws for our 7th winner from Carey Weddle, Director of Finance and Admin

Our 9th winner, Charles Fox, Carrier Sales Manager, draws our 10th winner from Nick Phillips, AVP of Operations and AM.








David Frizzell, President/CEO, draws our Grand Prize winners from Nick.

Congratulations to Catherine Mallery, pricing analyst, for winning the two Pacers Game tickets!

Congratulations to the Following BadAss Employees of 2016!

Saturday, January 14th we all gathered at The Rathskeller in Downtown Indy to celebrate the Holidays and give recognition to many of our team members who most demonstrated our Core Values in 2016.

We came together as a group for a delicious dinner, great music, a fun photo booth and the annual BRT -cademy awards.  Congratulations to the following BadAss recipients:

(Take a look at all the pictures on our Facebook page – the photo booth was a huge hit!)

Whit Smith, Manager,
Carrier Sales
—BadAss of the Year

Patricia Monroe, Sr. Optimization
& Implementation Consultant
– “Figures It Out” of the Year


Mark Simmonds,
Team Lead: Dedicated AM
– Rookie of the Year

Caitlin Conroy,
Senior Account Manager
– “High Service Logistics” of the Year

Tyler Henderson,
Carrier Sales Manager
—Most Valuable Player Of the Year



Dan Himmelheber, Senior Manager of Caito —Team Player of the Year









BRT Volunteer Day at Gleaners Food Bank Of Indiana

Thank you to our amazing BRT volunteers: (Back Row, Left to Right) Jared Hoss, Austin Potts, Darrel Rice, Logan Snyder, Byron Owen, Emily Karaff, Lucy Polovitch, Nick Phillips, Rusty Drayer (Front Row, Left to Right) Brittany Anderson, Emma Shields, Torrey Moore, Dan Himmelheber, Kim Gossett , Claire Nelson, Shawna O’Brien

Giving back to our community via volunteerism is a core value of the BRT culture.  Many times a team member will suggest an initiative that is close to his/her heart and sometimes, the idea originates from our Engagement Committee.

Volunteering during business hours is highly encouraged here at BRT – so much so that it’s a PAID event for the employees.

Last quarter the Engagement committee surveyed all BRT employees on where they felt we should give our time and talent to our community in 2017.  Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana ranked high on the list.

Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana distributes food to hungry Hoosiers through a network of over 250 partner agencies in 21 counties, including emergency food pantries, soup kitchens and shelters.  They also provide direct services to those struggling with hunger, through programs such as BackSacks: Weekend Food for Kids, School-Based Pantry, C.A.R.E. Mobile Pantry, and Community Cupboard.

Every day Gleaners depends on hundreds of volunteers to help them achieve their mission and because of volunteers, they are able to collect and distribute more than 2 million pounds of food each month!  See our Video Here!

Blue Ribbon Transport has committed to volunteering with Gleaners once a quarter to assist them in any way they feel we can be used.  This week was our first effort and we were THRILLED at how many BRT individuals wanted to help.  What a GREAT 1st turnout!

Our 15 volunteers were assigned to work in the cooler inspecting, sorting, scanning and packing donations. Working hard and fast, we accomplished sorting, weighing and packing NINE TONS of meat and frozen food in under 2 hours!

The frozen items we sorted and packed will be made available to Gleaner’s customers coming in to shop for food at the Cynthia H. Hubert Community Cupboard.

Gleaners was extremely impressed with how hard we worked and how much we accomplished in under two hours and our employees had a great time!

We’re looking forward to volunteering as a company again next quarter on Tuesday, May 2nd!


Managing Your Transportation Options

Trish Monroe – Senior Optimization & Implementation Consultant

Recent trends have shown that the 3PL world has steadily been on the upswing for the last 20 years. Why are shippers moving from insourcing transportation and acquiring assets to an outsource model with 3PL companies?

Studies have shown that over the last 2 decades 3PL providers have been able to not only take the burden off of shippers, but to also find cost saving initiatives for their clients. There are both benefits and disadvantages to a complete outsource that I will explain in this article.

But first, what is a full outsource and how can it benefit your company? Outsource, by definition, is contracting work out to another company. In the logistic industry, a full outsource would entail sending all orders through a 3pl provider to manage and consolidate freight. Today, you see many emerging manufacturing and distribution companies outsourcing their logistics responsibilities to 3PL companies. These 3PL’s are then in charge of receiving the customers’ orders, optimizing routes, gathering the carriers, equipment, and people, ensuring that product gets to the end receiver, and most importantly handling all the data associated with the transportation.

You can see the benefits of outsourcing transportation just by listing through the steps a shipper no longer has to take to stay in control. Clients that are in hopes to find a dependable full outsource solution should ask: What is their company culture? Does their services offer what I need? Are they capable of scaling up to maintain service levels as our company grows? Blue Ribbon Transport (BRT) is a 3PL that drives to stay ahead of the competition. We believe that service levels are paramount to the continued success of any outsource program. BRT has worked hand in hand with our clients to ensure a smooth and successful transition with full transparency and communication. To go into more depth, studies have shown the following benefits have come from a full logistic outsource:

  • Costs– 3PL’s have carrier relationships and access to superior and low price providers.
  • Adjustment and Flexibility– 3PL’s have the ability to flex when the market shifts. Shippers no longer have to buy assets and when business gets slow there is no need to sit on underutilized equipment.
  • Lower Headcount– With 3PL’s handling majority of logistic duties, shippers no longer need to employ personnel to oversee day to day activities.
  • Focus on Essential Concerns– Shippers no longer have to split time between departmental focus. This allows businesses to concentrate on production/manufacturing etc.
  • Technology- Majority of 3PL providers now offer TMS access and data warehousing giving the client real time updates and information.
  • Access to Networks- Larger 3PL providers have access to warehouses and storage facilities across the country. Emerging clients can take advantage of National Distribution Networks for LTL shipments and cutting costs significantly.
  • Consolidation-Third Parties have a large customer base that cross consolidation can occur. This is particularly favorable for shippers if they are sending out LTL shipments that they are currently paying FTL rates for.
  • Service- Service is what 3PL’s strive for as a value adding service to a shipper/customer.
  • FSMA Compliance- With new and ever changing FDA regulations, 3PL’s have the ability to adapt to regulations.
  • Shared Risk- By utilizing a 3PL customers can mitigate risks by having a third layer added.
  • Knowledge – 3PL’s are experts in the logistics and transportation industry. Utilizing the correct 3PL can give customer the advantages of expert knowledge.

On the other hand, Insourcing can be beneficial for companies. By definition, insourcing is the decision to maintain control. In the logistics industry, when a company chooses to insource transportation they are choosing to hire a subject matter expert, or a consultant to design and control a transportation department. This leads to benefits such as the following:

  • Control-Shippers still have complete control over all decisions and outcomes.
  • Self-Sufficient- Easier transition from one shipping model to another happens when there is not another party involved.
  • Confidentiality – By keeping all data in house, Shippers are able to know exactly who can access information
  • Layers- There is not a 3rd layer of business in the communication flow making it easier to gather information
  • Costs- Shippers will know exact cost of transportation without having additional expenses.
  • Equipment- Having equipment at client’s disposal to move product when needed.

There may not be a right or wrong decision, but knowing what your company needs to thrive and achieve continued success is the first step to selecting your direction. There will always be resources available to help along the way, whether that’s employing a subject matter expert, contracting a consulting firm, or a full outsourcing to a 3PL provider. If you’re just getting started and need a helping hand, BRT has the resources to help you hit the ground running.

Trish Monroe – Senior Optimization and Implementation Consultant

My Summer at Blue Ribbon Transport

During the summer of 2016 we had an amazing group of interns from Ball State, IUPUI, Purdue and IU Kelley School of Business.  They were such an asset and we enjoyed having them here and they had a great experience.

But don’t take our word for it, we’ll let a couple of them tell you about it:


Matt Stowe – IUPUI majoring in Accounting and Supply Chain Management


Over the summer I was able to work with Lisa and the HSL team to manage the Caito account. Everyone welcome us and treated us great. This included the training, which was exactly what the new full-time hires received. I was even given the opportunity to train a new full-time hire towards the end of the internship. Throughout the internship I learned a tremendous amount about the logistics industry. I worked with many different companies and hundreds of different loads. I never knew so much went into getting fruit to the local grocery store. Everything I learned during this internship will help me in the future, regardless of which direction I go. Thank you to everyone at BRT for making it such a great experience.

Sincerely, Matt Stowe



Grant Gill – Ball State University majoring in Business Administration

This past summer I had the fortune to intern for Blue Ribbon Transport. I was greeted with a warm welcome on day one. I was treated and viewed as a full time employee which made me feel like a part of the team. I received a great amount of training and insight during my time with BRT that has already proved to be beneficial in advancing my professional career. I never felt undervalued simply because I was an intern. I loved my time with BRT, and it was a BADASS experience!

The BRT Differentiator: Our 5 Core Services Defined

With a focus in the Food and Beverage Industry, BRT contracts with strictly qualified providers that focus on keeping product safe and ensuring high service logistics. Modes include: Temperature Controlled, Dry, and Flatbed.

As a 4PL BRT is able to provide a state of the art managed TMS system. Real time updates, customer access, and consolidated invoicing are just a few of the many services that BRT can offer.

Forward Distribution-
The BRT Network allows clients to utilize our nationwide SQF certified distribution centers for cross dock and storage solutions to reach customers they don’t currently or wouldn’t be able to service.

Dedicated Fleet-
With dedicated fleets BRT can provide a customer with assets that are flexible and reliable. With the fluctuation of product availability and the market. BRT can adjust the client’s expense on assets periodically, therefore saving our clients tran spend. BRT also can offer a coast-to-coast backhaul program to clients.

Integrated Services-
Team up with our Supply Chain Advantage (SCA) Team for customized solutions to your needs. SCA offers: Business Intelligence, Network Rationalization, Design, and Implementation, Food and Beverage Co-Packing and Manufacturing and much more.

Contact us today!

The Largest Holiday Card We have Ever Made!


Blue Ribbon Transport was asked to participate in Lawrence’s 5th annual Tree lighting ceremony on November 26th, 2016 by creating a large BRT branded Holiday card.  This large card is to be displayed along “Christmas Card Lane” on Post road, in the heart of what was once Fort Benjamin Harrison and just down the road from BRT headquarters.

Our card will be displayed before, during and after the parade that will kick off the season at 5pm on the 26th.

The family friendly event will include a visit from Santa, the Grinch, caroling, a one hour musical program and the tree lighting.

Thank you to everyone who helped in the planning, construction and painting!  All of your efforts created an amazing, festive card.  Our card will be displayed on Post Road between Otis Ave., and 59th St. beginning Saturday afternoon through the holiday season.


BRT Collects Much Needed Items to Assist our Honored Veterans This Thanksgiving


John Carlson, Manager of Business Development, introduced the employees of BRT to the Non Profit, Homeless Veteran’s Initiative Program (Homeless VIP) as a result of a close friendship with Veteran, Chris Manus, who founded Homeless VIP.  John has a true passion to give back to his community and working with Chris to help our Indianapolis Veterans was a natural fit.

john-c-chairJohn, volunteering as Vice President of Homeless VIP, has led the charge to start a collection at BRT to gather much needed items such as coats, blankets, boots and food for our honored and deserving Veterans in the Indianapolis area this Holiday Season.  John says, “It is a truly humbling experience to help those less fortunate in our local community, especially veterans who have fought for our freedom. As vice president of this Non Profit Organization, I want to do anything I can to help!”

All of us at BRT are excited to help John and Homeless VIP show our Veterans our appreciation and support!

BRT has a collection box set up in the kitchen for clothing donations and Homeless VIP will be volunteering our time at the annual Hoosier Veterans Assistance Foundation (HVAF) Thanksgiving dinner.  Homeless VIP, with BRT’s help and the help of other generous donors, hope to provide additional food items through donations that can be made via their website here.

We will be collecting the following items:

  • Long-Johns
  • Sock Caps
  • Gloves
  • Winter Coats
  • Winter Boats
  • Scarfs
  • Thick Socks
  • Blankets

Items needed for the Thanksgiving dinner include:  Rolls, Cranberry sauce, Assorted desserts, Pie, Brownies, cookies, cake, etc.; Assorted soft drinks & tea; Cups, Napkins, Plastic ware .

BRT sees this initiative as a wonderful opportunity as an organization to help John with this effort that will have an immediate and meaningful impact on our local Veterans.

Please share with your friends, family and peers in the Indianapolis area to help us collect the above mentioned items.  Or, you may contact Homeless VIP directly via email at: [email protected] or their Facebook Page here if you’d like to donate directly or start your own collection drive.

If you live outside of the Indianapolis area, we encourage you to reach out to your local VOA or similar Non Profit Organization in your area this season.

How BRT uses Real Time Technology to Optimize Frequent, Smart Delivery



“Blue Ribbon Transport (BRT) offers Optimization Solutions utilizing the power of MercuryGate’s Mojo Optimizer. Combine this software with BRTs FSMA compliant network, and customers can now benefit from our combined Optimization Tools and High Service Perishable Commodity mindset”.
-Trish Monroe, Senior Assessment & Implementation Consultant

While networking within the logistics industry, I consistently hear buzz words like “LTL shipments”, “optimization”, “competitive line haul rates”, and, the one that blows my mind, “more frequent deliveries to end customers”.

Why the need for these “buzz words”?  Are we not satisfied with how transportation works today?

Over the last decade, vendors and customers have worked tirelessly to reduce transportation cost by minimizing the frequency of deliveries to end destinations. So why are we going backward? The answer is: We aren’t!

By increasing deliveries you are giving your end customers the ability to order more frequently in reduced quantities. This reduces their storage expenses and allows them to operate on a leaner level.  On the other hand, this may be advantageous for ‘Smart’ vendors as well.  If consolidation can be had of smaller shipments a vendor can utilize a multi-stop truckload solution, or potentially dedicated routes. With this evolution of optimization within the industry, 3PLs as well as shippers are now able to meet your needs while also keeping costs down. This is done by consolidation, what if scenarios, as well as network overlapping. Manual paper and pen approach is the way of the past.

I’d like to reference a White Paper, MercuryGate and Mojo.  In this paper you will read of all the positive ways that Mojo can help change a shipper, 3PL, and even a consultant’s role. Touching every part of a supply chain from Shipper to 3PL to end customer.

“Optimization can be deployed in a wide range of scenarios. It can be used during the procurement process to make sourcing decisions, during the actual planning process when you’re identifying capacity requirements, and during the execution process when you’re building actual loads. Last but not least, it can also be used in strategic network design when making decisions like adding pool points to reduce network cost.”

Blue Ribbon Transport (BRT) offers Optimization Solutions utilizing the power of MercuryGate’s Mojo Optimizer. Combine this software with BRTs FSMA compliant network, and customers can now benefit from our combined Optimization Tools and High Service Perishable Commodity mindset.

Why is beneficial? When looking for a 3PL or an outsource solution it is imperative to know the product and have solutions. BRT works with everything from dry product to produce and even ice cream. With a nationwide network of head hauls and back hauls as well as consolidation warehouses, we are focused to run the best solutions for our clients.

Utilizing Mojo for consolidation and pooling points BRT can take your 2 pallet deliveries 4 times a week and consolidate routes to ensure you’re getting the best “bang for your buck”.   Erich Hofmann, Senior Supply Chain Analyst (BRT), states “If you can think it, you can try it with this software.  Sometimes you look like a Genius and sometimes a Dud but you can always find the answer to that ‘what if’ question.”

Cross customer consolidation, network overlying, backhaul programs, and even procuring partnerships are all the way of the future. Utilizing tools to continually improve service and networks is BRT’s expertise. Here at Blue Ribbon, we strive to partner with our clients not just a transportation provider but to be a supply chain partner.  If you need more information on the direction the industry is going or what BRT has to offer please contact me or my team of Supply Chain Advantage Specialists!