Friday, December 19, 2014

Introducing ABARTA's Northstar Team

Toby Nissel – Project Manager, Pittsburgh
Toby has worked at ABARTA for 1 ½ years, and has over 20 years of IT experience with an emphasis on software development and implementation.  He has served as Technical Project Manager for several ERP upgrades and implementations throughout his career, and is currently assigned as the Project Manager of the Northstar project to lead ABARTA in a business transformation.

Terry Reffner – Director Information Technology
Terry has worked for ABARTA since 2005, and has 38 years of Information Technology experience in various positions mainly supporting manufacturing businesses.  He has been involved in 4 major software initiatives including ERP implementations of Cullinet Application Systems, Oracle, and JD Edwards.  Terry looks forward to the next phase of business systems that will power the ABARTA Beverage Business for the next 10 to 15 years.

Florence (Flora) Torina – Director of Finance, Buffalo
Flora began her career with Buffalo Coca Cola 25 years ago as Accounting Manager.  She was promoted to Director of Finance in 1993. Flora’s responsibilities include providing financial guidance by making recommendations regarding revenue and productivity opportunities. She directs the preparation of the Annual Plan, prepares financial reports which summarize and forecast company business activity in areas of income, expenses, and earnings based on past, present, and expected operations. Additionally, she monitors and controls expenditures on a continuing basis by developing key indicators and reviews financial results with superiors and peers. Flora also establishes and coordinates planning procedures and administers annual operating and capital budgets.  Flora was born and raised in Buffalo, NY. She currently resides in Pendleton, NY.  She retired from the United States Navy Reserve as a Lieutenant Commander after 20 years of service.  Flora enjoys exercising, gardening and volunteering for The City Mission

Brian Horwath – Director of Operations, Lehigh Valley
Brian’s career at the Coca Cola Bottling Company has spanned 18 years starting in 1996 as summer temporary machine operator.  After graduating from Penn State University in May of 1997 with a degree in Environmental Engineering Technology, he became a full time employee in the Production Department.  He has held multiple positions before becoming the Director of Operations including Laboratory Technician and Quality Assurance Manager.  He is currently responsible for the areas of Manufacturing and Quality in the ABARTA Business Transformation initiative.

Dave Banas – Sales System Analyst, Pittsburgh
Dave joined ABARTA in 2008 to develop the new beverage ecommerce business unit, ThirstMonger.  He has over 15 years of experience managing technology to support sales and marketing initiatives for both B2C and B2B organizations.   Dave looks forward to bringing new tools to the field to help the Sales Teams create additional value for their customers.

Scott Ellmaker - Cold Drink Manager, Lehigh Valley
Scott has 23 years of service in Sales.  He started as Account Manager and then moved into different positions in both AOM Market and Cold Drink.   He has been in his present position for 10 years.  Scott’s project focus is Sales, from street level to District Managers.

Kathy Rupp - IT Manager, Cleveland
Kathy Rupp, IT Manager at Cleveland Coca Cola, has been employee of Cleveland Coke since 1976. During her long tenure, Kathy has worked in many areas of the business; Accounts Receivable, General Accounting, Route Settlement, Payroll, Cold Drink Sales Administration and finally IT.  Working in these areas, in some cases before there were computer systems, has given Kathy a solid understanding of our business.  She has been involved in many of our earlier Business Transformation projects including the implementation of the first handhelds for salesmen and drivers.  Other projects include Roadnet, VIP, Wizard, Kronos, PRISIM.  Kathy is working on the Northstar project team in the areas of IT and Business Analyst.  The Business Analyst role acts as a conduit between Business and Technology, helping the business with all the changes that will take place during this Business Transformation.

Tom Stroh – Distribution / Fleet Manager, Cleveland
Tom has been the Distribution Manager for Cleveland Coca Cola since 1997, having started at Buffalo in 1982.  His focus on the Northstar project will be on Full Service, WMS, Routing Systems and Vending.

Monday, December 1, 2014


  • Business Transformation Project
  • Upgraded mobile hardware
  • Updated software to better serve our Customers
  • New Processes at every level
  • Unified processes at all ABARTA plants
  • Systems integrated with CCR
  • eoStar and Microsoft Dynamics GP software installations

  • Accounts Payable, Purchasing and Manufacturing for all of ABARTA begins February 2015
  • Sales, Warehouse, Drivers  - Mid 2015 -  ABE (ABARTA Beverage East – Lehigh/Chester)
  • Sales, Drivers, Warehouse - 2016 for ABW (ABARTA Beverage West – Buffalo/Cleveland)

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