Laura Snyder is a very important member of Vanguard’s Operations & Logistics team. As the Logistics, Operations, and Documentation Coordinator, Laura has her hands on Vanguard’s shipping documentation from ALL origins tracking the thousands of ocean containers of fresh fruits and veggies that Vanguard ships around the world.
Laura is crucial in creating the document packages required by Vanguard’s customers to easily receive and clear their product when it arrives in their home port. This is a monumental task with each market, customer, and product often requiring a unique set of documents (think Bills of Lading, Phytosanitary certificates, Certificates of Origins, Commercial invoices and the documentation list goes on and on). One of Vanguard’s ocean carriers recently told us “We love working with Laura – she just get’s it done – when others are needy – she is a problem solver!”
Let’s get to know Laura a little more!
VG: Has Issaquah always been home or did you relocate for work?
Laura: I grew up in Issaquah and went to Washington State University in Pullman. I’ve always lived in the area.
VG: Have you always been destined for fresh produce? How did your career begin?
Laura: I was working for a tax firm and found out about Vanguard through a past employee who told me there was an open position. I never gave fresh produce a thought for a career but now 14 years later I still love it!
VG: We are well into managing in a global pandemic – what have been the greatest challenges? Any positive outcomes of a change in SOP?
Laura: With documentation that includes a lot of original documents and courier pouches that must go out timely it was a real challenge at first. My typical workday now starts at home checking emails and printing documents to the Issaquah office. Then I go into the office to assemble and finalize document packages before sending them out to customers. I end my day at home finishing up any open items and getting ready for the next day.
I have a great SOP now and enjoy the new workflow.
VG: Whose day to you impact on a regular basis? Who hears from you the most?
Laura: My usual email buddies are Jossi, Lily, and Horaychio, who are all key members of our global Logistics & Operations team, and of course my close colleagues in the Issaquah office, especially , Tamra and Kent.
VG: What has been a memorable moment of your time with Vanguard? After 14 years I’m sure there are more than a few memorable moments!
Laura: Years ago, going to Dim Sum with Kirk Son and our other Chinese colleagues and Ops/Doc department. There was a huge spread of food, but Kirk could not convince me to try the chicken feet! That was a fun lunch!
VG: What does your free time look like! Spending time with family, friends?
Laura: I spend my weekends and any free time with my fiancé and his kids. We recently got engaged and I went from having no kids to 3 stepdaughters and 2 grandkids!
I try to visit my parents who live in Arizona as much as possible. This has become more difficult after I adopted my rescue dog, Indiana, as she is very attached to me and does not like to travel. This last April my fiancé and I took the 22-hour drive to go visit my parents.
VG: Do you have a favorite produce item? If yes, how do you prefer to eat it (Snack? Signature Recipe?)
Laura: My favorite produce item is cherries! I look forward to the season and my favorite is the Rainier Cherry.
Every day is different at Vanguard; with new growers joining our community, new crops and fresh varieties being introduced, and new markets opening. Keep up to date with what’s happening in our expanding world.