The Burris Logistics Legacy Rolls On

Burris has a story tracing back to 1925 when John W. Burris and his father, Edward, worked together shipping tomatoes from the Delmarva Peninsula into Philadelphia.

On the return trip, they carried Acme Markets’ bread to its Delmarva region stores. Throughout its 92-year history, Burris has branched into food-service redistribution, public refrigerated warehousing and custom and retail specialty work.

Board of Directors

Burris Logistics takes pride in being a family-owned, family-run business. To help us ensure the highest possible value to our clients, we have assembled a board of directors to provide balanced, objective, professional advice. These directors represent the highest level of achievement in their respective fields and are amply qualified to guide Burris in both strategic and day-to-day planning.

Board of Directors

Back Row (standing, left to right): Eleuthère I. du Pont, Brad Hoopman, Donnan R. "Donnie" Burris, Scott Burris, and Zach Buckner.
Front Row (seated, left to right): Bob Koerner, Allison Burris Castellanos, Jeffrey M. Swain (Chairman), and Cathy Pulos.

Jeffrey M. Swain, Chairman

Jeffrey, the CEO and Chairman of Natural Foods Holdings, was born and raised in Western Pennsylvania. Jeffrey graduated from Penn State in 1974 and received his MBA from California State University in 1977. He began his career in the finance area with Borg Warner Corporation. Jeffrey’s experience in meat protein began at Foster Farms, Inc., on the West Coast in 1980. He has held executive positions at Con Agra and Townsends Inc. From 2000 to 2006 Jeffrey served as CEO of BC Natural, a holding company that included Petaluma Poultry, Coleman Natural Meats, Han’s Sausage as well as five other companies in the natural products arena.

Since September 2006 Jeffrey has partnered with Hilco Private Equity to create Natural Foods Holdings with the goal of building a financially sustainable fresh meat and processed meat products business. This platform emphasizes and promotes five brand tenets: the traditional family farmer, sustainable farming techniques, unparalleled animal welfare, complete livestock traceability, and “never/ever” use of antibiotics, added hormones or animal byproducts. Natural Foods Holdings comprises three companies: Niman Ranch, Sioux Preme Packing, and Prairie Grove Farms.

Jeffrey also serves on the board of directors of Sioux Preme Packing LLC, Palisades Partners and Odessa Chicken (Ukraine), and has testified before the U.S. Senate regarding livestock agriculture. He and his wife Dianne and son MacKenzie live in London Grove Township, Pennsylvania.

Donnan R. “Donnie” Burris

Donnie Burris became the CEO of Burris Logistics in 2010. He is a 5th generation Burris family member and has worked in the business for over 20 years.

Donnie is a board member of Delmarva Christian High School. He holds a bachelors degree from Liberty University and has completed additional study in the areas of strategy and finance through Wharton’s Executive Education Center and industrial refrigeration courses through RETA. He is also a graduate of the WFLO Institute, which is the educational arm of the Global Cold Chain Alliance.

Zach Buckner

Buckner and one of his companies, Relay Foods, have been featured in national publications including The Wall Street Journal and Fortune magazine, “as a leader in the legendarily alluring and notoriously difficult online grocery space.”

His areas of expertise and interest include freight, operations research, machine learning, text analytics, simulation, optimization, and computer architecture. As a board member, Buckner will share his expertise in information technology, e-commerce, and strategy to build on Burris’ good health and help to extend our longevity well past the century mark.

Scott Burris

Scott Burris is a senior director at Capital One in Wilmington, heading up human resources for Capital One Investing and leading all aspects of talent and culture strategy for the subsidiary. Outside of the workplace, Scott Burris serves on the board of directors of Kind to Kids, a nonprofit organization focusing on serving at-risk children and children in foster care.

Allison Burris Castellanos

The family member joining our board is Allison Burris Castellanos, who will be replacing her father, Howard Burris, who is stepping away. This appointment is significant as it represents the final transition of fourth-generation Burris family members overseeing the business to the fifth generation.

Castellanos, an educator and longtime advocate for the Hispanic community, will join the three sitting Burris family members on the board, Brad Hoopman, Scott Burris, and Donnan R. “Donnie” Burris, our chief executive officer since 2010.

For 17 years, Castellanos has taught English as a Second Language at Delaware Technical Community College. She serves on the Board of Trustees of the University of Delaware, and for many years has held leadership positions on the boards of La Esperanza Community Center, La Red Health Center and El Centro Cultural.

Eleuthere I. du Pont

A DuPont director since 2006, Mr. du Pont is president, Longwood Foundation. He formerly served as senior vice president, operations and chief financial officer of drugstore.com, a leading online provider of health, beauty, vision and pharmacy products; and president and chief financial officer of Wawa, Inc., a chain of food markets in the mid-Atlantic region.

In April 2013, Mr. du Pont was elected to serve on the board of WSFS. Mr. du Pont serves on the Audit and Science & Technology committees for the Board.

Brad Hoopman

Hoopman is an equity research analyst for Glenmede Investment Management LP, an affiliate of The Glenmede Trust Company, focusing on the energy and technology sectors.

Prior to joining GTC in 2003, he was a senior analyst and portfolio manager at Gardner Lewis Asset Management. And before that, he was with PNC Bank in a variety of positions, including managing the technology sector of the BlackRock Small Cap Growth Equity Fund.

Bob Koerner

Bob’s career in logistics began in the mid ’70s when, after college, and a successful service business, he bought an over-the-road tractor as an investment. Starting with one truck, he ended up buying a trucking company (Shives Trucking), and secured a contract with John Deere to deliver all their equipment throughout the state of Illinois. When deregulation came along in 1979, Bob sold this company and joined Power Packaging, where he started a trucking company (Power Transportation) and, later, a brokerage company (Power Brokerage). In 1984, the President of Rollins Truck Leasing asked Bob to start a brokerage company (Rollins Brokerage). He later headed up Rollins’ national truck rental operations. In 1988, the owners of Power Packaging bought a warehouse company (Freeze Point), and asked Bob to come back to Power and help build this company. Starting with just a few employees, they built Freeze Point (later changing to name to Power Logistics) to a nationwide logistics company. In 1995 Power’s board asked Bob to move to Europe to help do the same. His team successfully built one of the largest automated warehouses in Germany for Kraft, and later in England for Birds Eye Walls. (Both Power Logistics and Power Europe were purchased by Exel Logistics in 1999).

In 1996, Power’s board asked Bob to move back to the U.S. and run the parent company, Power Packaging. In 1998, he started his own logistics company (Pro Source Group) and was immediately successful, and in 2000 Total Logistic Control (TLC) bought Pro Source, and Bob became TLC’s president. TLC more than tripled in five years. In 2005 SUPERVALU bought TLC, and Bob became the CEO. In 2008, at the age of 58, Bob retired (a goal he set when he started Pro Source in 1998) and, with his wife Debbie, started cruising on their boat full-time on the waterways of the East Coast. After two years and more than 8,000 miles of cruising, they sold the boat, and Bob started BK Partners, Inc. His plan is to use his 35 years of business experience to help other companies enhance their enterprise value.

A graduate of United Electronics Institute, Bob attended the University of Louisville, where he majored in business. He has served two terms on the board of directors for the International Association of Refrigerated Warehouses, and on the Government Affairs Committee for the International Warehouse and Logistics Association.

Cathy Pulos

Cathy Pulos brings her financial acumen and human resources management experience to the Burris board table from Wawa, Inc., where she serves as vice president and chief people officer for the privately held company that operates more than 750 convenience store/gas stations along the Eastern Seaboard.

At Wawa, Pulos has developed “an HR center of excellence,” making the workplace better for its employees. At Wawa she has been saluted for advances in the design and delivery of workforce services, including everything from recruiting and hiring to compensation, benefits administration, and risk management and quality assurance. Pulos will take the seat of the outgoing James L. Murray.