General Manager, North America, Eldorado Brasil

Bob DavidsonBob Davidson began his career in the pulp and paper industry in 1976 with Price & Pierce International selling domestic and imported pulp in the US northeast. Following various promotions and changes in responsibility, he was appointed President in 1987.

Leaving for a new opportunity with CellMark led to more experience with pulp from Sweden, Finland and Brazil. In 1996 Bob founded his own firm, Atlantic Cellulose, specializing in import and sales of softwood pulp from Sweden and eucalyptus pulp from Brazil, holding the exclusive sales agency for VCP (Votorantim Celulose e Papel) until its merger with Aracruz in 2009.

Following a short stay with ITOCHU, managing pulp sales of Brazil’s CENIBRA to North America, Bob joined Eldorado Brasil in April of 2012 as General Manager, North America — a position he holds today.

Bob has a BA in Marketing and served as a pilot in the US Air Force prior to finding a home in the pulp business.


Vice President, Global Business Development, PENN Warehousing & Distribution

Tom MutzTom Mutz began his transportation and logistics career in January 1980 as a Territory Sales Representative for Airborne Express in New Jersey. After transitioning through several positions in management over 16 years, Tom was selected to be the direct liaison in the Americas for Mitsui & Co. Ltd. At that time, Mitsui was a Joint Venture Partner, and one of Airborne’s largest shareholders.

After leaving Airborne, Tom worked for a few other global freight forwarders such as BAX Global, Exel, and then once again working directly for Mitsui & Co. Ltd., before joining PENN Warehousing & Distribution, Inc. in 2009. He has been a member of IFPTA since 2010 and was appointed Secretary/Treasurer in 2017.

Born and raised in New York City and Long Island, Tom openly suggests his greatest accomplishments are his marriage to his wife Kathy for 41 years, and their three children. He is a graduate of West Virginia University with degrees in Biology and Business Administration.



Director of Global Distribution and Services, Georgia-Pacific - Packaging and Cellulose Division

Milind BalajiMilind Balaji is Director of Global Distribution and Services in Georgia-Pacific’s Packaging and Cellulose division and is responsible for a range of initiatives spanning procurement of warehousing and terminal services globally, break-bulk operations and plant-to-customer optimization, including product quality in the supply chain.

Milind's team is tasked with helping bring structural change to streamline post-manufacturing operations while always looking to seek, learn and potentially implement disruptive technologies and methods that gain competitive advantage. Keeping the customer experience at the core of all efforts is critical to his mandate within Georgia-Pacific.

Upon joining Georgia-Pacific, Milind started in the Marine Logistics group before moving to the global supply-chain organization.

Prior to working at Georgia-Pacific, Milind worked in the frozen proteins industry with Pilgrim’s Pride Corp. in international logistics.

Milind has a degree in Public Policy Analysis and Human Resources from Indiana University and a Masters in Business Administration from Mercer University.


Managing Director, NORD-OSTSEE Schiffahrtsges. mbH

Lars GottschenkisLars Gottschenkis started his career as a ship agent apprentice 1989 at J. Müller, gaining experience in the pulp, paper and lumber business. In 1995 he moved into the Terminal Operations for J. Müller and in 1997-1998 worked in the ports of Wesel and Emmelsum in Germany.

In 2000, Lars decided to leave J. Müller and continued his career at Stora Enso in Hamburg, where he was responsible for the pulp coordination on the EU Continent as well as for deliveries from Brazil to Europe. The serious sickness of his father brought him back to J. Müller in 2008, where he took a position in the Sales Office for Agriculture goods.

In 2015, Lars was appointed to a position within J. Müller’s Sales Team for Pulp & Paper, and in 2021 he became Senior Sales Manager Pulp & Paper, where he was involved in the total supply chain.

Currently, Lars holds the position of Managing Director at NORD-OSTSEE Schiffahrtsges. mbH in Bremen, Germany — a position he was appointed to in April 2023.

Lars holds a degree in State-Certified Business Economist Logistics. He joined IFPTA in 2015.


Manager, Marketing & Sales, BLG Cargo Logistics GmbH

Horst Kaupke Horst Kaupke started his career with a charter broker and liner agent where he represented different shipping lines providing Ro/Ro and Semi-Container Servers from Hamburg and/or Bremen to various destinations in Scandinavia, West Africa, the Far East, and America. In this function he became more and more connected to pulp, paper, lumber, and panel producing companies trading within those markets.

In 1996, Horst began his tenure with BLG Cargo Logistics GmbH (owner and operator of the Port Neustädter Hafen, Bremen) as Manager Marketing & Sales for Forest Products. In this position he maintains intensive continuous contact and co-operation with forest product suppliers and affiliated service providers and is involved with every aspect of the supply chain — from producer to final receiver.

Horst joined IFPTA in 1997 and was elected to the Board of Directors in 2015.


Commercial Director, G2 Ocean

Andy PowellAndy Powell is Commercial Director at G2 Ocean.

Andy is based in G2 Ocean's Atlantic Hub in Atlanta, Georgia. He has over twenty-five years of experience in the maritime industry, holding leadership positions within G2 Ocean and its predecessor companies, Star Shipping and Grieg Star.

During his career, Andy has worked in locations such as Bergen, Norway; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; and Vancouver, Canada, before returning to Atlanta in 2010.

Andy is a former member of the Trade and Transportation Advisory Council to the Atlanta Branch of the Federal Reserve and serves on the Board of Directors of the West Gulf Maritime Association. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of South Carolina.


Vice President, Maritime Logistics, Metsä Group

Jyrki RankiJyrki Ranki is Vice President, Maritime Logistics for Metsä Group, a position he has held since 2015.

Jyrki has over 25 years of experience in the Scandinavian forest products industry, beginning his career in 1993 when he joined Metsä Fibre (part of the Metsä Group) as a Logistics Manager. His primary responsibilities included creating and operating centralised maritime and port logistics solutions and organisation in the pulp sector.

In 2009, Jyrki was appointed as a Vice President of Metsä Fibre logistics.

In addition to the Metsä Group, Jyrki has held positions of leadership such as Chairman of the Board of Directors of stevedoring companies.


Diretora, APT Group

Ana TrilhoAna Trilho is an executive with 30 years of solid experience in logistics gleaned at Norsul, Suzano, Jari, IP and Klabin, focusing on shipping (break bulk and containers), storage, port management, and implementation of logistics operational for exports.

An internationally experienced strategist with a strong strategic vision of the different global scenarios pertaining to cargo handling, Ana started a consultancy company in 2018 (APT Group) with a focus on representing foreign logistics companies in Brazil and international logistics consultancy for the pulp and paper industry.

Ana was responsible for organizing IFPTA’s seminar in São Paulo that was attended by 200 participants from 16 different countries, and she has been Director of IFPTA since 2007.

Ana is a speaker and moderator at many international events in the area of forest product logistics. A native of Rio de Janeiro, she holds an Executive MBA from Coppead and an undergraduate degree in International Relations.


General Manager, North America, Saga Welco AS

Rhoda VothRhoda Voth is General Manager for Saga Welco, North America. The company operates a fleet of 52 vessels, designed specifically for carriage of forestry products. Rhoda joined Saga Forest Carriers in 1996 as Claims Manager, and in this role, worked with vessel operations to define corporate guidelines for stowage and protection of forestry products to ensure safe carriage by sea.

When Saga Welco moved its headquarters from Atlanta to Norway, Rhoda opened their regional office in Savannah, serving as Commercial Manager. In this role she worked to develop and manage contracts of carriage for various commodities including pulp, newsprint, lumber, kaolin clay and wood pellets, originating from North America and going to various worldwide markets.

Prior to working in shipping, Rhoda was on faculty at Mercer University, a Management Consultant with Deloitte & Touche, and an Engineer for Goodyear Aerospace.

Rhoda holds an MBA from the University of Akron, and an Industrial Engineering degree from Purdue University. Following completion of the required courses for The Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers (ICS), she became a member, and received the Port Strategy Award for the highest score worldwide on the Port and Terminal Management examination. Recently, she has been promoted to ‘Fellow’ within ICS.

Rhoda joined IFPTA in 2013 and was elected to the Board of Directors in 2017.


Vice President, Terminals and Stevedoring, Western Stevedoring

Kelly WilliamsKelly began his career in the forest products transportation sector when he joined Gearbulk Shipping Canada Ltd in 1996. His 17 years with Gearbulk included positions in the Vancouver (BC), UK, Brazil, Indonesia and Singapore, culminating with the General Manager’s role for Gearbulk Shipping Canada Ltd from 2008 to 2013.

In 2013, Kelly joined d’Amico Dry Cargo headquartered in Monaco as Head of Open Hatch Division where he was globally responsible for d’Amico’s Open Hatch fleet. After 4 years and the birth of two beautiful children in Monaco, an opportunity surfaced in Vancouver, British Columbia, with Western Stevedoring and Kelly returned to his home base, joining the organization in October 2017 as Vice President of Terminals and Stevedoring — a position he holds today.

Throughout his 24-year career in many diverse locations around the globe, the one consistent thread has been Kelly’s enduring connection providing reliable transportation and logistics solutions to the forest products industry.

Kelly holds a Bachelor of Commerce Degree from the University of British Columbia, majoring in Transportation and Logistics.