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John Leonard

Deputy Executive Assistant Commissioner
U.S. Customs and Border Protection


Ben Hammersley

Hammersley Futures


Matthew S. Axelrod

Assistant Secretary for Export Enforcement at the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security


Carl W. Bentzel

Commissioner ,
Federal Maritime Commission

Conference Schedule

  • 10:00 am – 6:00 pm     Registration
  • 5:00 pm – 5:30 pm    Opening & Toast Sponsored by Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg, P.A.
  • 5:30 pm – 6:30 pm    Welcome Reception Sponsored by Roanoke Insurance Group
  • 7:00 pm – 10:00 pm    Karaoke Sponsored by Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg, P.A.
  • 7:00 am – 6:00 pm    Registration
  • 7:00 am – 8:00 am    Continental Breakfast
  • 8:00 am – 8:15 am    Welcome Remarks & AAEI Business Meeting
  • 8:15 am – 9:30 am    General Session: Washington Insiders (In Conjunction with the Women in International Trade)
    Moderator: Orisia Gammell, WIIT and SAP
    Speakers: Vanessa Sciarra, American Clean Power Association;  Lisa Schroeter, The Dow Chemical Company; Yuri Unno, Toyota Motor North America
    Let’s explore “behind the scenes” of how trade policy is developed in Washington. Your one-stop resource to learn and be prepared for what is to come in 2023 and 2024.
  • 9:30 am – 10:30 am    General Session: Forced Labor
    Moderator: Jessica Libby, KPMG LLP
    Speakers: Patrick Togni, King & Spalding; Eric Choy, U.S. Customs and Border Protection;  Amy Albano, Grainger
    Forced labor compliance and enforcement is evolving. Are you ready? Learn what Forced Labor risks exists and how to create corporate compliance programs to mitigate these risks. (Note: This panel is off-the-record)
  • 10:30am – 11:00 am    Coffee Break
  • 11:00 am – 12:00 pm    Breakout 1: Corporate Compliance Professionals – Raising Your Profile
    Moderator: Matt Varner, Aritzia
    Speakers: Cynthia Whittenburg, NCBFAA;  Cindy DeLeon; DeLeon Trade LLC; Jason Kenner, Sandler Travis & Rosenberg P.A.; Robert Morris, Daniel B. Hastings, Inc.
    New Customs Broker Regulations are here. What does that mean for your corporate compliance program? Compliance professionals will examine what these changes mean for in-house and traditional brokers.
  • 11:00 am – 12:00 pm    Breakout 2: Export 201 – Challenges for Export Specialists
    Moderator: Phillip Poland, Poland Trade Law
    Speakers: Tom Cook, BlueTiger International Dennis Krepp, Caterpillar, Karen Wyman, Teledyne FLIR
    Export regulations are changing rapidly. Are you up to speed on the new challenges for export specialists? Examine how new export regulations are changing the way companies are remaining compliant.
  • 12:00 pm – 12:30 pm    Transition Break
  • 12:30 pm – 1:30 pm    Premier Keynote Luncheon
    Featuring Deputy Executive Assistant Commissioner John Leonard, U.S. Customs and Border Protection
  • 1:30 pm – 2:00 pm    Transition Break
  • 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm    Breakout 3: Drawback 2023: Where Are We Now?
    Moderator: Michael Cerny, Charter Brokerage
    Speakers: Dave Corn, Comstock & Theakston, Inc.;  Brandon Morris, U.S. Customs and Border Protection;  Thomas J. Kendrick, U.S. Customs and Border Protection
    Now that drawback has settled into the post-CEE norm, we will examine the possibility of making drawback business processes more efficient.
  • 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm    Breakout 4: Congressional Perspective on the Future of Trade Policy
    Moderator: Myles Getlan, Cassidy Levy Kent LLP
    Speakers: Alexandra Whittaker, U.S. House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee
    Congress sets U.S. trade negotiating objectives, enacts trade laws and oversees executive trade functions. Hear from congressional trade staff on how Congress will be pursuing trade and customs policy in the 118th Congress.  (Note: This panel is off-the-record)
  • 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm    Breakout 5: Now that the Dust has Settled, What Can We Expect From Our Maritime Ports?
    Moderator: Evelyn Suarez, American Port Association
    Speakers: Joe Kramek, World Shipping Council;  Cary Davis, American Association of Port Authorities;  Cathie Vick, Port of Virginia
    Trade and the growing trend toward globalization has made the world’s largest ports critical infrastructure. Discover how those ports are leveraging technology and public-private partnerships to support the growing demands of exporters and importers.
  • 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm    Breakout 6: Progressive Filing & Integrating E-Manifest with Export Modernization
    Moderator:  Elizabeth Merritt, A.N. Deringer
    Speakers: David Garcia, U.S. Customs and Border Protection;  Gerry Horner, U.S. Census BureauDave Corn, COAC Export Modernization Co-chair
    Can providing trade data earlier improve trade facilitation? Export professionals examine how progressive AES filing and e-manifest may or may not guarantee to the government that exporters are carrying compliant goods.
  • 4:00 pm – 4:30 pm    Coffee Break
  • 4:30 pm -5:30 pm    General Session: US Government Update on Sanctions and Export Controls
    Moderator: Doug Jacobson, Jacobson Burton Kelley PLLC
    Speakers: Charles Wall, U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS);  Erik Grossman, U.S. Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC)
    The US, in close coordination with many other countries, has imposed numerous sanctions and export controls on Russia and its allies. These sanctions and export controls have created many compliance challenges for businesses. Hear the latest information on US sanctions and export controls policies and enforcement directly from senior officials at BIS and OFAC.  (Note: This panel is off-the-record)
  • 5:30 pm – 7:00 pm    Networking Reception Sponsored by Flexport
  • 7:00 am – 12:00 pm    Registration
  • 7:00 am – 8:00 am    Continental Breakfast
  • 8:00 am – 9:00 am    Executive Keynote: How Technology could Reshape How We Trade?
    Keynote Speaker: Ben Hammersley, International Strategic Forecaster
  • 9:00 am -9:30 am    Coffee Break
  • 9:30 am – 10:30 am    Breakout 7: 21st Century Customs Update
    Moderator: Matthew Zehner, Roanoke Insurance Group
    Speakers: Caroline Dale, Flexport Customs LLC;  Steve Story, Apex Logistics International, Inc.;  JD Gonzalez,  JD Gonzalez C.H.B.;  Brandon Lord, U.S. Customs and Border Protection
    What is the appropriate blueprint for the management of trade and borders and the role of Customs? This panel will discuss the next steps of the regulatory and legislative process.
  • 9:30 am – 10:30 am    Breakout 8: Export Controls on China
    Moderator: Charles Capito,  Morrison Foerster LLP
    Speakers: James Min, LimNexus LLP;  Kim Strosnider, Covington & Burling:  April Snyder-Bolden, IBM
    Learn the scope of export controls on China and how these rules could impact corporate compliance and your supply chain decisions.
  • 10:30 am -11:30 am    Breakout 9: Future of the BIEC and 1-USG
    Moderator: Kari Finch, General Mills
    Speakers: Michael Mullen, Express Association of America (EAA); Tom Gould, Flexport Customs LLC; Amy Wert, McCormick & Company
    The Border Interagency Executive Council was created in 2014 to streamline the export and import process for America’s businesses. Almost 10 years later, how close are we to a one-government release? This panel will explore how far we have come and what’s next for 1-USG.
  • 10:30 am -11:30 am    Breakout 10: Technologies’ Impact on Reasonable Care
    Moderator: Julie Parks, Raytheon Technologies
    Speakers: Todd Smith, KYG Trade;  Mukesh Mahajan, ArchLynk;  Rebecca Allen, Deloitte
    The trade community is increasingly considering new methods of automation that rely on artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning. This panel will explore how these technologies may allow the trade to benefit, reducing costs and adding simplification.
  • 11:30 am – 12:00 pm    Transition Break
  • 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm    Strategic Keynote Luncheon
    Featuring Assistant Secretary for Export Enforcement Matt Axelrod, Bureau of Industry and Security
  • 1:00 pm – 1:30 pm    Coffee Break
  • 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm    Breakout 11: Navigating Regulated Imports in the Complex PGA Environment
    Moderator: Elizabeth Lomax, Lomax Associates
    Speakers: Heidi Woods, Medtronic;  John Verbeten, U.S. Food and Drug Administration;  Matthew Rhoads, U.S. Department and Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS)
    How do you navigate the spaghetti bowl of participating government agencies at the border? Importers and government agency representatives will explore how best to keep up to speed with multiple agency requirements and requests.
  • 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm    Breakout 12: Supply Chain Strategies
    Moderator: Jerry Cook, Hanesbrands
    Speakers: Rich DiNucci, Venable LLP; Brett Tipple, FloraTrace
    Forced labor and green lane compliance are putting new attention on supply chains. What should a good supply chain strategy include? What kinds of compliance tools are worth investing in?
  • 2:30 pm – 3:00 pm    Transition Break –  Award Ceremony & COAC Recognition
  • 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm    General Session: Diplomatic Update
    Moderator: Eric Ham, The Washington Diplomat
    Speakers: Brett Bruen, The Global Situation Room; Hardy Boeckle, German Embassy
    Many Washington diplomats are the highest official envoys representing a state. In their unique role, they engage in foreign relations with the U.S. government. Hear from current and former diplomats representing key partners to the U.S. and U.S. businesses and learn how trade is impacting their country.
  • 4:00 pm – 4:30 pm    General Session: Ports Industry Perspective
    Moderator: Vince Iacopella, Alba Wheels Up International
    Speaker: Wes Sudduth, Venable LLP; Peter Friedmann, Agriculture Transportation Coalition
  • 4:30 pm – 5:00 pm    General Session: Federal Maritime Commission Regulatory Update
    Moderator: Vince Iacopella, Alba Wheels Up International
    Speaker: Commissioner Carl W. Bentzel, Federal Maritime Commission
    The Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 2022 broke new ground in creating a mechanism to seek greater transparency at the port. Learn how the Federal Maritime Commission is working to implement the new law, and what additional changes could be coming to help improve port congestion and business practices.
  • 5:00 pm – 5:15 pm    Closing Remarks
  • 8:30 AM – 10:30 AM    AAEI Board of Governor’s Meeting
  • 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM    Benchmarking Session – Importing /Exporting
    Facilitator: Beth Lomax, Lomax Associates
  • 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM    AAEI Drawback Committee Meeting
  • 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM    AAEI Healthcare Industries Committee Meeting

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