Tamra Hunter is a Logistics & Operations Coordinator for Vanguard. In this role Tamra works closely with the many crucial vendors in Vanguard’s supply chain. This includes trucking companies, air freight forwarders, and ocean carriers.
Let’s get to know Tamra a little more!
VG – Has Washington always been home, or did you re-locate for work?
Tamra: Born in Seattle but lived in the South when I was younger. After moving back and graduating from the University of Washington (Go Huskies!), I then headed to Southern California. My family finally brought me back to Washington for good!
VG – Have you always been destined for fresh produce? How did your career begin?
Tamra: I have always loved fruit and what a different perspective one has of it when in the industry. I started on the Logistics side of business with Nordstroms. After a few years of staying home with my daughters, I knew I wanted to continue working in logistics. Moving produce instead of clothing – there is absolutely no comparison between the two. No two days are ever the same when it comes to fresh produce! An opportunity with Vanguard came up and I am very happy and fortunate to have joined the Vanguard team 19 years ago.
VG – We are well into managing in a global pandemic – what have been the greatest challenges? Any positive outcomes of a change in SOP?
Tamra: Challenges, hands down, along with flight schedules, are the ocean vessel schedules. Trying to figure out the best, fastest, non-port omitting vessels – I think we can all agree what a challenge this has been and continues to be. Even with new models of working from home or office, I do miss the daily face to face interactions with co-workers in the office, the hum of conversations, laughing, and talking.
VG – Whose day to you impact on a regular basis. Who hears from you the most?
Tamra: Being on the logistics side of the produce industry – everybody hears from me! Co-workers, our foreign offices, sales, suppliers, truckers, carriers, air forwarders, and terminals – I love talking with everyone on a daily basis and solving problems.
VG – What has been a memorable moment of your time with Vanguard?
Tamra: Moving all the desks in the office and setting up a mini hydro plane race course to celebrate Seafair. The majority of Vanguard graduated from Washington State University, so for those of us who went to the University of Washington, it is a fun rivalry during football season with a lot of bets and trash-talking!
VG – What does your free time look like! Spending time with family, friends?
Tamra: With three grown daughters and my first grandson living out of the area, I try to see them as often as I can.
I love being outside, especially puttering around in my garden regardless of the rainy Pacific Northwest weather. I am an avid soccer fan; watching, playing, and refereeing, being named East King County Referee of the Year. I am fascinated with genealogy, having traced one direct line through 500AD. It’s amazing what you will find, from signers of the Declaration of Independence and railroading pioneers to bootleggers and swashbuckling pirates.
VG – Do you have a favorite produce item? If yes how do you prefer to eat it (Snack? Signature Recipe?)
Tamra: You can always find fresh fragrant lemons in my kitchen. Refreshing, tangy, and tasty in any type of dish or drink. I absolutely love cooking! Grilled swordfish with a creamy lemon sauce… need I say more!
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.