Member Spotlight: Meet Pilar Dorfman of Phoenix International Freight Services, Inc.

TIA loves to celebrate our diverse membership. Meet Pilar Dorfman, customs broker for Phoenix International Freight Services, Inc. in West Covina, Calif.

How did you get involved in the industry? How many years have you been working in the industry?

I embarked on my logistics journey at the age of 20, initially working on FDA approvals for wine labels. My passion for this industry has fueled my career for around 35 years. Prior to joining Phoenix International, I served 32 years as Vice President of Compliance and Brokerage with my former company, during which I obtained my customs broker’s license and a customs specialist certification. This path reflects my dedication to excellence and ongoing education in our field.

Who has inspired your career?

My inspiration comes from within – a personal drive and a profound love for the logistics industry. I am particularly captivated by the complex interplay of customs brokerage, including compliance, regulations, and the nuanced art of providing exceptional customer service. It’s the intricate details and constant learning that inspire me every day.

What has been the greatest challenge/opportunity in your career?

The greatest challenge in my career was passing the customs brokerage exam; it tested my knowledge and resolve but ultimately led to one of my most significant opportunities. That opportunity was joining Phoenix International and being entrusted with the responsibility of building the brokerage department from scratch, a task that has been both challenging and rewarding.

What advice would you give to others who want to start working in the industry?

For those embarking on a career in logistics, patience, focus, and customer orientation are key. Be ready for challenges; they’re an opportunity to solve problems, ensure the delivery of shipments, and experience the deep satisfaction that comes from piecing the complex logistics puzzle together. Stay committed, and the rewards will follow.

Why is it important for you to be a member of TIA?

Being a member of the Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA) is crucial for staying abreast of the latest updates and critical information in the industry. It’s an invaluable resource for understanding new developments and for awareness of situations that may not be immediately on your radar. It’s an essential tool for anyone serious about their role in this ever-evolving industry.

TIA 3PL Market Report Q4 2023: Navigating Through Challenges with a Glimpse of Recovery

The Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA), the voice of third-party logistics professionals, has released its much-anticipated 3PL Market Report for the fourth quarter of 2023. This latest report captures the ongoing challenges and emerging positive trends within the transportation and logistics industry, highlighting the resilience and adaptability of TIA members in navigating a complex market landscape.

The report outlines a decline in shipments, invoice amount per shipment, and total revenue compared to the previous quarter. Specifically, total shipments saw a 4.7% quarter-over-quarter decrease and an 8.9% year-over-year decline. Invoice amounts per shipment and total revenue also faced significant drops, indicating that the fourth quarter was the toughest of 2023.

Despite these challenges, the report identifies signs of recovery in transportation costs, which have started to rebound from the early 2023 lows. This shift comes as the industry grapples with the exit of over 35,000 carriers from the market in the last 18 months, underscoring the dynamic nature of the logistics sector. 

“The market is tough for brokers and intermediaries, as our Q4 Market Report revealed,” said Anne Reinke, TIA president & CEO. “Despite headwinds, TIA members are serving their customers effectively and efficiently, investing in their businesses, and are beginning to see some positive trends in the marketplace.”

More Key Takeaways and Trends Include:

  • Resilience Amidst Decline: While the overall volume and revenue metrics indicate a downturn, the report highlights the sector’s resilience. Larger brokers have notably outperformed their smaller counterparts in terms of invoice amount per load and gross margin, suggesting a slight overall enhancement in market conditions.
  • Segment-Specific Recovery Signs: There’s a noteworthy improvement in the invoice amount per load for both Truckload (TL) and Less Than Truckload (LTL) segments, hinting at a gradual recovery in the transportation cost. This recovery is crucial for stabilizing the market and offering some relief to 3PL providers facing tight margins and decreased volumes.
  • Future Outlook and Adaptability: Despite the challenging year, the fourth quarter showcased the best performance in 2023, signaling potential for recovery and growth. TIA members are actively adapting to market demands, refining their service offerings and leveraging technology to enhance efficiency. 

The report also sheds light on the significant decline experienced by the Full Truckload (TL) segment compared to others, with Intermodal (IM) facing the most considerable drop in invoice amount per load and total revenue. However, the resilience in the Less Than Truckload (LTL) segment, showcasing improvements in invoice amount per load similar to the third quarter, suggests varied impacts across different modes of transportation. 

“While 2023 has been a challenging year for the 3PL sector, with the fourth quarter being particularly tough, there are emerging signs of a turnaround,” said Mark Christos, TIA chairman of the Board. “The industry’s ability to remain flexible and responsive to changing market conditions will be crucial in overcoming current challenges and seizing future opportunities.” 

The full report “3PL Market Report, Fourth Quarter 2023, Issue 61” is available for free to media upon request. 


Please note: The 3PL Market Report is intended for TIA subscribers and the full report is not meant to be reproduced or redistributed by any recipients.


About TIA

The Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA) is the professional organization of the $343 billion third-party logistics industry. TIA is the only organization exclusively representing transportation intermediaries of all disciplines doing business in domestic and international commerce. TIA is the voice of transportation intermediaries to shippers, carriers, government officials, and international organizations. Learn more about TIA at

Member Spotlight: Meet Charlie Saffro of CS Recruiting

March is Women’s History Month and TIA believes in celebrating the diversity in our membership. Meet Charlie Saffro, CEO, of CS Recruiting in Highland Park, Ill.

How did you get involved in the industry? How many years have you been working in the industry?

I started working in the industry in 2006 when I joined a logistics technology start-up. My original role was a cross between marketing and office management, yet our company went through some unexpected growth and I quickly transitioned into a recruiting position to support additional hiring needs. I was with this company for four years before they were acquired and I spun off my own recruiting firm, CS Recruiting in 2010. As of 2024, I’ve been in this industry 18 years…but who’s counting?!?

Who has inspired your career?

I draw most inspiration from the remarkable women I’ve encountered on my journey. There are too many to name, but these include various clients, job seekers, colleagues, mentors and partners that I’ve met over the years. Despite women being outnumbered in our industry, I’ve found so many inspiring females who have influenced me along the way. Their stories and experiences are relatable and serve as a reminder that anyone can forge their path to success with the right amount of resilience and passion to make a meaningful difference.

What has been the greatest challenge/opportunity in your career?

Leading people has been both the greatest opportunity and biggest challenge in my career. Leading a team can be incredibly rewarding when you know you’re making a difference in someone’s life. However, leading a team is also an ongoing challenge, as it comes with a huge amount of accountability and responsibility to do right by others.

My goal as a leader is to influence to inspire others to reach their own potential by providing them with the opportunities and resources to do so. Being a leader means you face challenges everyday; but, it also means that you are taking advantage of opportunities everyday…and there’s no doubt the reward is greater than the risk.

It’s no irony that my biggest challenge is also my biggest opportunity because I’ve learned that leadership and people management is all about balance. I find myself constantly gauging my own alignment between leading with my head and leading with my heart and use this to drive my behavior and decision making.

What advice would you give to others who want to start working in the industry?

I would encourage anyone aspiring to join the logistics and supply chain industry to embark on an exciting journey that never ceases. The dynamic nature of this field ensures that every day is a new adventure. The gratification of contributing to the movement of essential goods and services on a global scale is unparalleled. My advice would be to embrace the constant evolution, stay curious, and be ready to leverage your superpowers to make a meaningful impact.

Why is it important for you to be a member of TIA?

Being a member of TIA holds immense significance for me due to the invaluable opportunities I’ve been exposed to for networking and learning. The collaborative environment allows me to connect with industry peers, share insights, and stay updated on the latest trends and innovations. TIA fosters a community where knowledge is shared, relationships are built, and together, we contribute to the growth and advancement of the logistics and supply chain sector.


Member Spotlight: Meet Harinder Kaur of Vineyard Brokerage in Indianapolis.

March is National Women’s Month. This month we will be highlighting our women-owned brokerages.

Meet Harinder Kaur, CEO of Vineyard Brokerage in Indianapolis.

How did you get involved in the industry? Our Family had trucking business and I saw the opportunity of expanding it by being a broker.

Who has inspired your career? My husband

What has been the greatest challenge/opportunity in your career? Making new customers believe there are still good people and companies in freight that are earning honest business.

What advice would you give to others who want to start working in the industry? Consistency and persistence will get you the business. Honesty and ethics will maintain the business.

Why is it important for you to be a member of TIA? TIA helps to get you a solid start with your business, including providing time-tested contracts, platform, tools, software and support.

Member Spotlight: Meet Martha Brown of Advantage Brokerage Corporation in Loveland, Colo.

March is National Women’s Month. This month we will be highlighting our women-owned brokerages.

Meet Martha Brown, president of Advantage Brokerage Corporation in Loveland, Colo.

How did you get involved in the industry? In the 1980s, I worked as an administrative assistant to a couple traffic managers in south Florida. That resulted in my being hired by a Miami-based freight brokerage as a customer service representative.

How many years have you been working in the industry? I spent a few years learning about the industry from a user standpoint, then a couple years as a CSR in a brokerage. I’ve been self employed for almost 30 years. About 15 of them was operating as an independent agent under a large corporation’s flag. I opened my first brokerage 14 years ago and my second 10 years ago. We also have been providing custom warehouse solutions for our largest customer for about eight years.

Who has inspired your career? My customers have inspired me by way of challenging me to find solutions during difficult times.

What has been the greatest challenge/opportunity in your career? The greatest challenge AND opportunity we face is recognizing when we make a mistake, taking ownership of it, and offering and providing solutions to reconcile the situation.

What advice would you give to others who want to start working in the industry? Learn the language of the industry in general. Then find a niche that resonates in your soul.

Why is it important for you to be a member of TIA? TIA membership provides so much education and resources! The templates are top notch and easily tailored to each member’s particular needs. Members have access to information that isn’t found elsewhere. Further, the camaraderie among fellow brokers is remarkable.


TIA and Avalon Announce Trimester 1 2024 Scholarship Recipients

[Alexandria, Va., Feb. 27, 2024] — The Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA) – the only organization exclusively representing transportation intermediaries of all disciplines doing business in domestic and international commerce – is pleased to announce the winners of the Trimester 1 2024 Certified Transportation Broker (CTB) scholarships. Generously sponsored by Avalon Risk Management, these scholarships empower logistics professionals to advance their knowledge and expertise.

The CTB is the third-party logistics industry’s most widely recognized designation and is earned after a rigorous four-month course and comprehensive examination. This year’s recipients of the scholarships are Francis Murdoch with RKA Transportation in Bridgewater, Mass., and Brock Bonner with Prosponsive Logistics in Atlanta.

“Avalon Risk Management is committed to supporting TIA’s vision of being a leader in providing exceptional resources and education to the 3PL community,” said Christie Brush,         CIC, CTB, vice president, Southern Region for Avalon. “We believe that continuous learning and professional growth are essential for success in today’s fast-paced business world. It is our privilege to extend our support to TIA’s CTB Program by offering two scholarships to deserving individuals.”

Commenting on how this scholarship will help him in his career, Bonner said, “This scholarship will significantly support my career aspirations by providing me with the financial means to pursue additional certifications and training within the brokerage industry. By enhancing my skills and knowledge, I aim to become a more effective professional and contribute meaningfully to the growth and success of Prosponsive.”

Explaining how this scholarship will help him in his role as a director in his company, Murdoch said “There are a few mentors in this space and there is a great need for certified, verified and approachable leaders to help control the misinformation and bad actors that give this industry for some, a bad reputation. This scholarship enables me to learn and implement skills that will help me teach and grow the individuals on my team and provide better service for our customers and the industry at large.”


Students interested in the CTB Trimester 2 program may register here until May 13.

TIA Announces Dora McCann as Director of Government Affairs

[Alexandria, Va., Feb. 26, 2024] — The Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA) – the only organization exclusively representing transportation intermediaries of all disciplines doing business in domestic and international commerce – announces the appointment of Dora McCann as its new director of Government Affairs.

With an impressive career spanning two decades in intermodal policy, McCann brings a proven track record of legislative success in fostering political cooperation to achieve the codification and implementation of Congressional legislation, regulation and testimony.

McCann began her political career as an aide to Sen. Mark O. Hatfield (R-Ore.) before transitioning into a role as a federal lobbyist in Washington, D.C., representing clients in surface transportation, mass transit, and aviation policy. Her expertise further expanded during her tenure in San Diego where she gained a grassroots perspective serving as the director of Government and Civic Relations at the Port of San Diego, the executive director of San Diego’s largest business improvement district, and as a consultant to clients seeking innovative legislative and funding strategies to achieve long-term business objectives. Notable achievements include supporting key appointments on the U.S. Department of Transportation Marine Transportation System (MTSNAC) and the U.S. Department of Commerce Supply Chain Competitiveness (ACSCC) presidential advisory committees, as well as chairmanships to the California and American Association of Port Authorities (CAPA, AAPA).

“We are thrilled to have Dora join our team to help advance the legislative and regulatory goals of the third-party logistics industry,” said Anne Reinke, president & CEO of TIA. “Dora’s extensive transportation policy experience equips her with a unique blend of federal, state, and transnational legislative skills that will undoubtedly contribute to advancing TIA’s membership objectives in connectivity, sustainability, and profitability objectives.”

McCann earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Virginia, a language certificate from Instituto de Málaga Plus, Málaga, Spain, and a Master of Arts degree in Public Administration from George Mason University.

TIA Releases White Paper on Safeguarding Shipments Against Fraud

 [Alexandria, Va., Jan. 29, 2024] — TIA recently unveiled its latest resource aimed at addressing widespread fraud in the marketplace. The release features the latest industry whitepaper, titled ‘Safeguarding Shipments Against Freight Fraud and Double Brokering Risks.’ 

Focused on shippers in the marketplace, the whitepaper identifies seven strategies for shippers to protect themselves from cargo and payment fraud. These strategies include:

• Conduct Rigorous Due Diligence;
• Foster Long-Term Relationships;
• Verify Carrier and Driver Information at Pickup;
• Restrict Exposure to Load Boards;
• Inform Carriers on How to Detect Fraud;
• Insist on Real-Time Tracking Updates; and
• Enforce Appointment Scheduling.

The whitepaper represents the latest initiative from TIA’s Shipper Committee, comprised of logistics and shipper professionals. TIA’s ongoing efforts aim to deliver value and guidance to all entities within the supply chain.
To view the latest whitepaper, click here.

TIA Launches New Industry Fraud Report

[Alexandria, Va., Jan. 18, 2024] TIA is launching a new quarterly fraud report to highlight the damage that freight fraud is having on the supply chain industry.

Collaborating with the International Factoring Association, the global leader among associations for accounts receivable finance organizations, the TIA Fraud Task Force will work with its members to highlight how often fraud happens in the industry; what commodities are most targeted and how much fraud is costing shippers, brokers and carriers annually.

“Freight fraud is our members number one priority,” said Anne Reinke, president & CEO of the TIA. “We do not feel that the federal government, FBI or local police are understanding the extent of fraud that happens in the supply chain industry. Fraud costs victims an estimated $500 million to $700 million in freight payments annually.”

With an annual revenue of more than $700 billion, the trucking and logistics industry is a big target. This common fraud occurs when bad actors, masquerading as motor carriers, logistics companies, or fraudulent entities steal or re-broker loads without the knowledge or consent of any of the parties to the transaction. Fraudulent entities will often steal the identities of legitimate motor carriers and find other victims to take freight and withhold payment.

Tania Daniel, executive director of the International Factoring Association, expressed her support for the collaborative effort, stating, “Combating fraud requires a unified front, and the cooperation between TIA and the International Factoring Association is a crucial step towards safeguarding the integrity of the industry.”

To help members combat fraud, TIA offers a free course “Fraud in the Supply Chain“, which helps brokers develop selection policies to combat fraud. Additionally, TIA will be releasing an updated Framework to Combat Fraud. This comprehensive framework covers all the types of fraud currently perpetuated in the supply chain and feedback on how to handle these situations when faced with them. This is the third update to this important framework since its inception in 2015.

Furthermore, stay tuned for the highly anticipated whitepaper on fraud and the supply chain and how shippers are addressing this crisis. The whitepaper will provide seven best practices for shippers to mitigate the risk of freight fraud and what they are looking for in their brokers.

The first quarterly Fraud Report is expected to be released in Quarter 2 2024.

TIA Express Disappointment in DOL Independent Contractor Ruling

[Alexandria, Va., Jan. 10, 2024] — TIA released the following statement in response to the final rule issued recently by the Department of Labor related to the classification of independent contractors:

TIA and our 2,000 member companies express our disappointment with the Administration and anti-business DOL.

Independent contractors play a pivotal role within our nation’s supply chain, serving as essential cogs in its seamless operation. Logistics companies depend significantly on their contributions to the supply chain and workforce. The notion of reclassifying these vital independent contractors as employees and creating a confusing and conflicting system to determine employment status poses a grave threat to the well-being of the supply chain, small businesses, and the American economy.

TIA remains firm in our commitment to advocate for the preservation of independent contractors and protect the important role they play in sustaining the integrity and efficiency of our nation’s supply chain.

TIA is the premier organization for third-party logistics professionals in North America and abroad. Membership at TIA adds value to your business and provides resources for growth.
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