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BNSF Railway Co. President and Chief Executive Officer Carl Ice and Norfolk Southern Railway President and soon-to-be-CEO James Squires will be the keynote speakers in Chicago next month for the annual meeting of the North American Rail Shippers (NARS).To be held May 27-28 at the Drake Hotel, the meeting also will feature three rail association presidents and a panel of logistics executives representing chemicals, grain, silica sand, and short line and associated services, according to a NARS press release.The meeting "will be an opportunity to hear what some of the best leaders in logistics have to say about today's challenges and possibilities in our industry," said NARS President Glen Courtwright, director strategic operations for Georgia-Pacific LLC.Scheduled to speak during the event are: Michael Bourque, president of the Railway Association of Canada; Edward Hamberger, president and CEO of the Association of American Railroads (AAR); and Linda Bauer Darr, president of the American Short Line and Regional Railroad Association.Others slated to speak or serve on panels include John Barrett, general manager of supply chain for Chevron Phillips Chemical Co.; Jim McKinstray, vice president of central purchasing and transportation for The Andersons; Justin Renfro, vice president of logistics for Superior Silica Sands; and Allan Roach, senior vice president of business development for Watco Cos. LLC.Positive train control and the Chicago Region Environmental and Transportation Efficiency, or CREATE, Program will be discussed by Frank Lonegro, CSX Transportation's vice president of service design; Steve Hoye, director of the Chicago Transportation Coordination Office, Belt Railway Co. of Chicago; and William Thompson, chief engineer of the CREATE Program, AAR.Following Squires' keynote address on May 28, TTX Vice President of Fleet Patrick Casey and National Steel Car Co. Senior Vice President of Marketing and Sales Robert Pickel will review rail car market conditions. Scheduled to wrap up the event are Tony Hatch from ABH Consultants and Jason Seidl, Cowan and Co.'s managing director, who will look at railroads from a financial perspective.
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