Keynote Speakers

Abeba

Abeba Birhane

Dr. Abeba Birhane

Advisor, AI Accountability
Mozilla Foundation


Adjunct Assistant Professor

Trinity College Dublin, School of Computer Science and Statistics

Abeba Birhane is a cognitive scientist, currently a Senior Advisor in AI Accountability at Mozilla Foundation and an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the School of Computer Science and Statistics at Trinity College Dublin, Ireland. She researches human behavior, social systems, and responsible and ethical AI – work for which she was recently featured in Wired UK and TIME on the TIME100 Most Influential People in AI list.
 
Birhane’s work explores the challenges and pitfalls of automating human behavior through critical examination of existing models and audits of large scale datasets used for training models. She demonstrated patterns of problematic data collection, labelling, and use of large scale image datasets like MIT’s 80 Million Tiny Images, which was taken down as a direct result of one of her audit papers. Her paper showed that these datasets – which were used to develop numerous algorithmic tools – encode racist, misogynist, and otherwise marginalizing labels that cause downstream harms (as models trained on such dataset further exacerbate these problems), especially towards people at the margins of society.
 
Birhane was awarded the 2019 NeurIPS Black in AI Best Paper Award, a 2020 VentureBeat AI Innovations in Computer Vision Award, a 2022 Fairness Accountability and Transparency (FAccT) Distinguished Paper Award, and a 2022 Lego Director’s Prize for her PhD thesis contribution, among many other honors.
Betsy Allen-Manning

Betsy Allen-Manning

BETSY ALLEN-MANNING

Owner & Ceo
Corporate CUlture Training Solutions
Featured on FOX, CBS, ABC, NBC & TEDx, Betsy Allen-Manning is an internationally known leadership speaker, best-selling author, & company culture expert. Her specialty is helping leaders attract, engage and retain the best talent in a hypercompetitive marketplace. Betsy is the owner of Destination Workplace™, one of the top leadership training companies in Dallas, Texas. Through her dedicated research, expertise in human behavior, & experience managing at 5-star hotels, she is honored to have trained over 15,000 leaders & teams for small businesses, franchises & associations, to multi-billion dollar corporations, such as Toshiba, Aflac, Fidelity & the US Department of Defense. Her mission is to help leaders put purpose, accountability & loyalty back into the workplace.
Cordero Barkley

Cordero Barkley

Cordero Barkley

Partner
TitletownTech
TitletownTech Partner Cordero Barkley had a successful career in banking and wealth management before joining TitletownTech. He spent nearly a decade with Associated Bank in various roles, from small business lending to retail banking to corporate financial education, before ending in wealth management, where he assisted high-net-worth individuals, business owners and their families. Earlier in Cordero’s career he worked as a credit analyst and personal banker for Wells Fargo.
 
Cordero is chair of the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay (UWGB) council of trustees. Additionally, he serves on several boards, IVO Systems, Midwest Games Co., American National Bank-Fox Cities, the Fox Cities Performing Arts Center, the Wisconsin Technology Council, Status Pro (FL) and the Greater Green Bay Community Foundation.
 
A former collegiate athlete at UWGB, Cordero wanted to share his love of basketball, so he joined forces with his wife and got involved in coaching; he is now the director of the Wisconsin Purple Aces, a club basketball program in northeast Wisconsin.
 
Cordero is a two-time graduate of UWGB, with a BA in business administration and an MS in management.
Hugh Forest

Hugh Forest

Hugh Forest

Co-President and Chief Programming Officer
SXSW (South by Southwest)
Hugh Forrest serves as Co-President and Chief Programming Officer for South by Southwest (SXSW). In this role, he oversees content for the SXSW Conference, as well as the SXSW Music Festival, the SXSW Film Festival, the SXSW Comedy Festival and SXSW EDU.
 
Forrest was named "Austinite of the Year" in 2012 by the Austin Chamber of Commerce (along with fellow SXSW Directors Roland Swenson, Louis Black and Nick Barbaro). In 2014, Forrest and these other SXSW Directors were named Austin Entrepreneurs of the Year by Ernst & Young. He was awarded a Key to the City in January 2023 by Austin Mayor Steve Adler.
 
He received an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters in 2018 from Kenyon College, his alma matter. In 2021, he was awarded Diversity Champion of the Year by the Austin Black Business Journal.
 
In addition to his work at SXSW, Forrest has previously served on of the National Advisory Board for the Poynter Institute in St. Petersburg, Florida. He has also served on the Board of Directors for Austin Habitat for Humanity. He currently sits on the Board of Directors for the Austin-based accessibility company Knowbility. Via his decades of work with the Austin Reggae Festival, he has helped to raise more than $1 million in funding for the Central Texas Food Bank. Before joining the SXSW team in the dark ages of 1989, he founded a small monthly alternative publication called The Austin Challenger. Forrest also wrote for several other newspapers and publications, including the Austin Chronicle, the Texas Sports Chronicle, the West Austin News, Willamette Week and the Seattle Weekly. For 2025, SXSW is scheduled March 7-15.
Jonah Turner

Jonah Turner

Jonah Turner

Head of Emerging Technology
Molson Coors
Jonah Turner is a results-oriented, high-energy technology professional with a strong portfolio of project successes that span government, startup, corporate, and nonprofit sectors. He currently leads the Technology Innovation team at Molson Coors, driving the strategy and execution of emerging technologies to create new sources of value for the company while orchestrating a series of tech community initiatives to elevate IT's culture, brand, and talent pipeline. Jonah serves on the Advisory Boards of the MKE Tech Hub Coalition and i.c. stars Milwaukee and as Board President of the Ozaukee Nonprofit Center. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a B.S. in Computer Science and Mathematics, and earned a Master's certificate in Information Technology Project Management from The George Washington University.
Matt Adamczyk

Matt Adamczyk

Matt Adamczyk

Microsoft Technologist in Residence
TitletownTech
Technologist with nearly a decade of experience at Microsoft, specializing in software design, innovation, and cross-function collaboration. Leveraging a robust technical foundation to propel venture backed startups to the next level. Computer Science and Math at University of Iowa and MBA from University of Wisconsin-Green Ba
Missy Hughes

Missy Hughes

Missy Hughes

Secretary and Ceo
WEDC
Melissa “Missy” Hughes is secretary and CEO of WEDC, Wisconsin’s lead economic development organization. She was appointment to the post by Governor Evers in September 2019. Prior to joining WEDC, she was chief counsel and chief mission officer for Organic Valley, a Wisconsin- based, nationwide cooperative of organize dairy farmers. In her role at WEDC, Secretary Hughes oversees efforts to attract businesses to Wisconsin and help existing businesses expand, meet current and future workforce needs, promote global trade and investment, support thriving communities and small businesses, encourage entrepreneurship and innovation, address the unique needs of rural residents, and advance the economic well-being of every resident.
Steven Brown

Steven Brown

Steven Brown

VP of Diversity Equity Inclusion (DEI)
Molson Coors Beverage Company
Steven Brown is the VP of Diversity Equity Inclusion (DEI) & Talent Acquisition with Molson Coors Beverage Company where he is responsible for ensuring the execution of the company’s DEI, Talent Acquisition and Early Talent program management strategies across the US, Canada and LATAM. He works closely with the executive leadership team while partnering with the organization to ensure the right tools, resources, programs, and processes for DEI and Talent Acquisition are aligned with recruitment, leadership, employee development, employee engagement, and retention. His focus includes strengthening the leadership accountability for fostering a workplace where all employees feel connected and valued while being their authentic selves. Prior to re-joining Molson Coors in March of 2020, Steven was the Global Inclusion & Diversity Leader and Sr. HR Business Partner for Leadership Programs with GE Healthcare. Steven has held various Human Resources roles including Global Talent Acquisition Leader and Senior HR Business Partner. He has previous industry experience with SC Johnson and BMO Harris. He earned a MS in Human Resources at Marquette University, and a BBA degree in Finance from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. Steven is a life member of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Incorporated.

Breakout Session Speakers

Aaron Towns

Aaron Towns

Aaron towns

Director of Corporate
BMO

Aaron Towns is Director of BMOs Commercial Bank. Aaron oversees the strategic execution of BMOs Diversified Industry Groups clients who have revenues that range from $30M - $1B and is the Ambassador for BMO's $40B Empower program. An initiative designed to provide financial and community driven investment in communities across the state of Wisconsin and beyond. Aaron joined the bank in 2013 and has more than 20 years of professional service experience.

Prior to his role with BMO, Aaron was an IT Leader a part of GE Aircraft Engines Leadership Development Program, Project Team Member with Kroger Corporate responsible for the creation of the Kroger plus rewards program. He then was recruited to be a part of National City Banks leadership team, where he lead 4 business lines and was responsible for the implementation of six sigma and lean methodology concepts being integrated in banking / finance, as a Best In Class initiative. Aaron, then joined 5/3rd Banks Consumer Banking line of business. With BMO, Aaron has served as a leader of one of BMOs top 5 Flagship locations, a Market President with BMOs Premier Wealth business, a Retail Regional Sales Manager and now takes his previous expertise to help his clients identify holistic solutions to positively impact their employees, leaders, corporate entity and community.

Aaron received his degree in Business Marketing and Information Systems with Xavier University and serves as an advisor and strategist for many local non profit organizations. Furthermore, he serves on the leadership committee for the OCC’s Project Reach initiative, which supports and advocates for small businesses and affordable housing in order to offer equity to underserved communities.

Adam Gruszcynski

Adam Gruszcynski

Adam Gruszcynski

IT Director
Potawatomi Casino Hotel

Information Technology Director, Adam Gruszcynski, is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the IT Department for Potawatomi Casino Hotel while ensuring all of the technology needs, whether current or future, of the organization are met.

Adam joined Potawatomi Casino Hotel in 2008. During his time at PCH, Adam has gained an abundance of experience by taking on various roles including IT Security Manager, Senior Cybersecurity Engineer, Lead Network Administrator, Network Administrator, and Application Administrator. Prior to PCH, Adam was Network Engineer at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel where he began his career as Help Desk Intern. Adam is a graduate of Milwaukee Area Technical College.

As an engaged leader of the Potawatomi Casino Hotel team, Adam is passionate about inspiring more people to explore career opportunities at PCH – within the Information Technology department and beyond – so they too can experience the great workplace that PCH truly is.

Adam is also a Steering Committee Member of Tribal-ISAC.  Tribal-ISAC is a national organization that brings together Native American owned/operated businesses to share information and experiences to strengthen cybersecurity programs within these organizations.

In his free time, Adam enjoys spending time with his family, being outdoors, watching All Elite Wrestling, and reading comic books (DC is better than Marvel).

Adam Suring

Adam Suring

Adam Suring

CISO
ValorTech

With over 25 years experience, Adam Suring is the Chief Information Security Officer at ValorTech, a Milwaukee-based IT Managed Service Provider. Adam leads ValorTech's team of systems engineers responsible for the design, implementation and 24x7x365 support of all clients' technology infrastructure and applications. His expertise is focused in Application Development Operations, Application Performance Management, Security Infrastructure, Storage and Virtualization Solutions for enterprises to small business.

Alex Devries

Alex Devries

Alex Devries

Technical Architect
Aleysian

Alex has over 15 years of experience in IT consulting services, serving as a developer and technical architect. His knowledge and expertise in programming, systems integration, data modeling, system architecture, and technical management has helped him to deliver efficient and intuitive solutions to clients. In addition to the delivery of technical services, Alex has experience in requirements gathering and analysis, user interface and experience design, and training. Alex began his career as a full-stack developer by implementing custom web applications for state and local government agencies, guiding them in modernization efforts to better serve their constituents. Initially, Alex worked extensively with Microsoft technologies, but transitioned to working with the Salesforce platform in 2017.

Andreas Bubenzer-Paim

Andreas Bubenzer-Paim

Andreas Bubenzer-Paim

Managing Director: Head of Technology Banking
BMO

As the Head of Technology Banking, Andreas Bubenzer-Paim oversees the delivery of BMO Commercial Banking’s services to Technology clients nationwide. Bubenzer-Paim has two decades of corporate and investment banking experience, as well as expertise across lending, capital markets, investments and treasury services. Bubenzer-Paim earned his Masters of Business Administration from Duke University's Fuqua School of Business; he also studied Entrepreneurship and Technology Innovation at Stanford University. He is an official member of the Forbes Technology Council and contributing author on Forbes.com.

Andrew Hockin

Andrew Hockin

Andrew Hockin

Managing Director
BMO Capital Markets

Andrew Hockin is a Managing Director with BMO Capital Partners which is an evergreen investment fund focused on investing in the North American mid-market through fund commitments and direct investments (minority equity/sub-debt) into companies across various stages of growth.  Andrew has nearly 20 years of mid-market corporate finance experience in M&A advisory, leveraged lending, sponsor coverage and LP and minority equity investments.  Andrew is a member of the Chartered Professional Accountants of Ontario and a graduate of Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario.

Andy Byrne

Andy Byrne

Andy Byrne

Director of EV products and markets
Potawatomi Ventures

Andrew Byrne is currently the Director of EV Products and Markets for Potawatomi Ventures. Andy leads all facets of the PV’s go to market and service delivery functions of their newly launched EV Infrastructure offering. Potawatomi Ventures (PV) was established in 2002 as the economic development and income diversification business of the Forest County Potawatomi Community (FCPC). Headquartered in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, our subsidiary companies and investments provide financial diversification for our shareholders and investment partners. We grow with a clear focus on profitability and sustainable economic development. Prior to the Potawatomi Ventures, Andy led eMobility product development and sales for Lindsay Renewables. Lindsay Renewables designs and manufacturers precast concrete and pre-fabricated steel products for the Solar, EV and BESS industries. Prior to Lindsay Renewables, Andy led the North American Sales and Business Development efforts for Autel Energy. Autel Energy is a global OEM hardware and software developer/manufacturer of EV and Energy Storage products. Andy began his journey in the eMobility industry while working for Harley-Davison Motor Company. In 2018, Andy was assigned to the team dedicated to preparing the organization for their forthcoming EV motorcycle (Livewire). After Harley-Davidson, Andy continued his work in the industry, accepting leadership roles in the eMobility teams at both ABM and The State Group. Andy has been dedicated to energizing the Renewables industry for over 6 years.

Angela Johnson

Angela Johnson

Angela Johnson

CIO and VP of Security & Business Continuity
Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Angela Johnson is chief information security officer for Children’s Wisconsin. A tireless advocate for the better health and wellness of children, Angela works all levels of information systems to promote policies that support this goal. She has more than 17 years of experience in information systems, supply chain and financial services. Always focused on Children’s belief that kids deserve the best, Angela leads Children’s strategic efforts to improve security and infrastructure processes and securely implement new technology. She works in close partnership with all parts of the system to support innovation and collaboration while ensuring compliance with the strict regulatory environment governing the healthcare industry.
 
In her role as chief information security officer, Angela collaborates with other leaders to ensure infrastructure design and implementation meet security requirements. She also plays a role in planning, maintaining, securing, optimizing, expanding and protecting Children’s growing information technology infrastructure.
 
Angela brings a multi-disciplinary approach to leading and executing a risk-based enterprise information security, physical security, business continuity and infrastructure strategy and program, helping Children’s effectively meet the needs of the kids and families it serves.
 
Angela is a graduate of Marquette University where she earned her undergraduate degree. She also holds a MBA from Walden University. Angela is a member of the YMCA of Metropolitan Milwaukee board, as well as president of the Midwest Cybersecurity Alliance. Prior to joining Children’s in 2017, Angela served as the director of information security at Robert W. Baird & Co in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
 
Anne Norman

Anne Norman

Anne Norman

Senior Director Digital Solutions
Horizontal Digital
Anne has 15+ years of experience focused exclusively within digital helping customers drive business value and ROI from their MarTech investments. Anne specializes in complex, integrated solutions that span business strategy, user research, creative design, and digital technology. She provides insights and subject matter expertise in the areas of Marketing Strategy, Commerce, and MarTech platforms
Ayrton Bryan

Ayrton Bryan

Ayrton Bryan

Senior Manager, Sustainability
Avery Dennison
Ayrton Bryan supports the globe as a professional and champion for greater environmental accountability. As a Senior Manager for Sustainability at Avery Dennison, he leads efforts to integrate sustainability across the company's value chain. His work supports connecting the physical and digital to create a healthier planet. In 2023, he was named to the Milwaukee Business Journal 40 under 40 and the Harvard Business School Young American Leader Program.
 
Bryan is passionate around community impact and empowerment. He continually works to create opportunities for workforce development and environmental impact reduction. He is also active in several nonprofits focusing on diversifying small businesses and representation in the outdoors. Prior to joining Avery Dennison, he has worked in sustainability defining cradle to grave carbon impacts and in environmental health and safety manager at global companies focused on employee safety and well-being & environmental reporting.
Balamurugan Balakreshnan

Balamurugan Balakreshnan

Balamurugan Balakreshnan

Senior Director/Principal Cloud Solution Architect
Microsoft
Bala brings extensive leadership in driving digital transformation initiatives through the strategic application of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and cloud-based digital solutions. His expertise encompasses cutting-edge technologies such as Generative AI (Gen AI), Artificial General Intelligence (AGI), Large Language Models (LLM), Machine Learning (ML), Internet of Things (IoT), Big Data, and advanced analytical solutions.With a profound knowledge of both first-party Microsoft technologies and a wide range of open-source solutions, as well as other leading cloud providers, Bala excels in providing comprehensive leadership, analysis, and design tasks essential for developing robust and scalable solutions.
Betty Yang

Betty Yang

Betty Yang

Software Development Engineer
American Family Insurance

Hello, my name is Betty Yang. I am a Software Development Engineer at American Family Insurance. As an alumnus of the AWS Re/Start Program through Brooksource, I transitioned into my career into the technology sector with a strong foundation in cloud computing. I hold a Bachelor of Science in Human Development/Psychology from the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay. With a diverse background encompassing 8 years in childcare and customer service. My commitment to continuous learning is evidenced by my self-directed journey into data analysis, culminating in the attainment of two professional certifications. My hobbies include indoor plants, patio gardening, reading and aquatics.

Bob Fudurich

Bob Fudurich

Bob Fudurich

Senior Solutions Engineer
Netskope

As long as I can remember I've been passionate about technology. I'm lucky enough now to be in a role when I can share my experiences with others. I love having the opportunity to educate, but I'm amazed by how much more I'm able to learn daily through the conversations I have with my customers, partners, and colleagues. 

Bob Langys

Bob Langys

Bob Langys

Solutions Engineering Manager
Netskope

An avid technologist and consummate sales professional, Sales/Solution engineering is my dream career. I take great joy in leveraging technology to solve challenges and this career has afforded me the opportunity to contribute to the success of my customers and my team. 

From the initial engagements required to understand business challenges, through detailed technical demos and proof of values conducted with the challenges in focus, to the successfully adoption of solutions by my customers - sales engineering is where I perform my best work. 

SASE solutions encompass a wide variety technology solutions. I am a lifelong learner and SASE provides interesting material with real-world benefits to my customers.

The only constant in the tech industry is change - an idea that I embrace and live every day.

Brian Thompson

Brian Thompson

Brian Thompson

Chief Innovation and partnership officer
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Brian Thompson is Chief Innovation and Partnership Officer at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He is responsible for partnerships with corporations, non-profit organizations, and other groups to enhance and uplift the academic enterprise, research accomplishments, and student experiences at UWM. In this role, he oversees key initiatives that include the Connected Systems Institute (CSI), Northwestern Mutual Data Science Institute (NMDSI), Freshwater Collaborative of Wisconsin (FCW), and the Lubar Entrepreneurship Center (LEC). Thompson joined the UWM community in 2006 to help launch the UWM Research Foundation which he led through 2022. He also served as Director of the Lubar Entrepreneurship Center from 2016 to 2023 and is Co-PI on the Milwaukee I-Corps (Innovation Corps) program sponsored by the National Science Foundation.

Bruce Wolf

Bruce Wolf

Bruce Wolf

Senior Manager, Enterprise Digital Risk
American Family Insurance

Bruce manages the Office of the CISO for American Family Insurance, accountable for the strategy, operations, budget, and storytelling for the Enterprise Digital Risk organization. Previously, he worked in Corporate Strategy at Northwestern Mutual, where he managed the $500M enterprise portfolio of projects. Prior to that, he held many technical leadership roles at SC Johnson. A lifelong Wisconsin resident, he earned a B.S. in Computer Science and an MBA from University of Wisconsin – Parkside. He is married to his wife Corrine, and they have four children.

Carl Lewis

Carl Lewis

Carl Lewis

Founder
Craft the Future

 Carl is a no-code creative passionate about democratizing access to technology education, blockchain, and AI. He is the founder of Craft The Future, a marketing analyst agency, while also powering an upcoming platform called No-Code Creatives. Carl has been featured in Sheppard Express, ETHChicago, Internet Computer Protocol Community Conference, and the upcoming Blockchain Futurist Conference. His mission is bringing the next wave of creatives into the no-code atmosphere.  

Carlos Vasquez

Carlos Vasquez

Carlos Vasquez

Founder
hABLAcODE

Tech is my passion, whether I'm navigating corporate complexities or guiding community workshops. I specialize in simplifying intricate problems into elegant solutions, catering to engineers and enthusiastic learners alike. My commitment to excellence shines through every step of the tech journey.

Casey Cammilleri

Casey Cammilleri

Casey Cammilleri

CEO
Sprocket Security

Casey Cammilleri is the CEO and founder of Sprocket Security. He helps businesses outsmart cyber adversaries and prevent cybersecurity breaches. With a decade of exhilarating exploits under his belt, Casey emerged from the shadows of hacking to revolutionize the world of security. Over time, he has forged industry-defining security tools, implemented ingenious methodologies, and developed his wizardry into scalable software that is now the technology driving Sprocket Security. Dissatisfied with the status quo, Casey championed a radical transformation in the industry. He dares to challenge the norm, swapping the outdated annual 'penetration test' ritual for an unending cadence of dynamic, real-time security testing to ensure threats are constantly met with proactive defenses.

Chad Steighner

Chad Steighner

Chad Steighner

Chief Digital & Information Officer
Clarios

In his role he serves as CDIO with key priorities of operating and securing the IT landscape, enabling strategy and delivering projects as well as leading digital value creation. Chad directs IT investments executed via 290+ internal employees located around the world along with support of contract staff and managed service firms. Starting in 2018 Chad led the strategy and execution of a 30-month carve out from Johnson Controls completing ahead of schedule in July 2021. Since then he has focused on improving the digital customer experience, identifying new business models and most recently smart manufacturing strategy. 

Chad has more than 23 years of experience designing, building and deploying systems around the world in process and discrete manufacturing environments. Sixteen of those years have been in the Clarios organization. 

Prior to his career in IT Chad managed the systems group for a private electrical engineering firm where he designed and deployed industrial automation, batching and traceability solutions worldwide for clients such as Cargill, Agribrands Purina and Mars Pet Food. Chad also has engineering experiences from Kimberly-Clark Corporation infant care division and IBM server manufacturing.

Cherry Ji

Cherry Ji

Cherry Ji

Senior Program Manager
AWS Education Program: AWS Training and Certification

Cherry Ji is a Senior Program Manager of AWS Education programs at Amazon Web Services (AWS). In this role, Cherry owns the vision and execution of learner experiences for AWS Educate, one of AWS Education programs that offers barrier-free, foundational cloud trainings to individual leaners worldwide.

Cherry is passionate about helping learners to build in-demand cloud skills at their own pace, own time, and nurturing the next generation of cloud-ready talent. She is a firm believer in continuous learning, self-improvement, and educational equity. She is focused on closing the IT cloud skills gap by skilling, reskilling, upskilling, and training individuals around the world.

Cherry has been with Amazon for more than 8 years serving in a variety of roles across Amazon business units, including Amazon retail, Alexa Shopping, and AWS Training and Certification. Cherry holds a Bachelor degree in Industrial Design from University of Washington. Cherry lives in Seattle where she spends most her free time exploring local parks and trails with her family.

Chris Brown

Chris Brown

Chris Brown

Sr. Vice President of Sales
Caddi

Chris Brown has demonstrated exceptional leadership in the manufacturing industry over the past two decades. In 2024, he joined CADDi as the Vice President of Sales. Here, he successfully launched and expanded the company's presence in North America, implementing innovative sales strategies that aligned with advanced solutions for manufacturers and fabricators.

Prior to his role at CADDi, Brown was instrumental at Xometry, where he served as Vice President of Marketplace Growth and Vice President of Sales and Business Development. During his tenure, he drove the company's revenue from $8 million to $400 million over five years, building a network of over 5,000 partners and generating $23 million in a single year.

Earlier in his career, Brown began at Proto Labs. His efforts, as a Sales Lead and Senior Account Executive, significantly expanded the client base, solidifying the company's position as a leader in rapid prototyping and on-demand manufacturing services.

Brown's strategic leadership has consistently fostered growth and innovation, making him a key figure in the competitive manufacturing industry.

Chris Luecke

Chris Luecke

Chris Luecke

Podcast Host & Community Builder 

Manufacturing Happy Hour

Chris Luecke is a Podcaster, Marketer, and Content Creator in the manufacturing industry and the host of the top-ranked podcast Manufacturing Happy Hour. Described as "TEDx meets 'How It's Made," Manufacturing Happy Hour goes beyond the buzzwords and dissects real-life applications and success stories through candid interviews with executives, entrepreneurs, and thought leaders. To date, Chris has interviewed over 200 leaders in the industrial sector in an effort to simplify and explore the latest trends and technologies impacting modern manufacturers.

Craig Armstrong

Craig Armstrong

Craig Armstrong

President 

Viking Masek Robotics & Automation

Craig Armstrong is the President of Viking Masek Robotics & Automation. Over the past +20 years he has held key technical, sales and general management positions in both Public and Private organizations in the manufacturing industry. Combining his technical knowledge as a Chartered Engineer with business strategy and leadership skills, he has successfully lead organizations through organic growth, M&A and turn around transformation phases of their life cycle. Originally from the United Kingdom, he started out his career as a Reliability Engineer, before progressing into Sales and Service leadership roles on a Global level. Over the past 6 years he held the position of President & CEO of a privately held manufacturing organization, based in Milwaukee, and has recently transitioned to lead the growth of Viking Masek Robotics and Automation. Viking Masek Robotics & Automation is a Milwaukee based integrator, providing bespoke automation solutions to the manufacturing industry. Viking Masek has a passion for innovation and a long history of delivering cutting edge automation solutions.

Conor Farley

Conor Farley

Conor Farley

Executive Vice President
Oliver Construction

Conor joined Oliver in 2018. He has held various positions at Oliver from Project Manager, Estimator, Vice President and now his current title. Conor is responsible for operations, preconstruction management, estimation management, design team management, and management of the project managers group. Conor’s construction and design experience covers data centers, test cells, industrial facilities, commercial, and retail facilities.  Before Oliver Construction, Conor was Chief Revenue Officer at Intrinio where he took the company from idea stage to $1M in recurring revenue. Intrinio continues to grow to and succeed. Conor has bachelor’s degrees in Economics, International Studies, and Spanish from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a master’s in Construction Management from Louisiana State University.

Cris Ippolite

Cris Ippolite

Cris Ippolite

CEO & Director of ML/AI 

iSolutionsai

Cris Ippolite is CEO/Director of ML/AI @ iSolutionsAI, providing AI services to enterprise. iSolutionsAI actively develops, implements, and delivers custom AI services to business decision makers that safely leverage artificial intelligence with high upside ROI.

Cris began his AI journey in the sports industry with a paper on 2013 that led to disruption in fantasy sports gaming. Since, he has applied custom machine learning models and A.I. language model implementations for businesses uses cases within various enterprises and small to medium organizations. Cris is a thought leader in the modern AI space, evangelizing to business leaders, founders and developers. iSolutionsai.com

Dan Rogers

Dan Rogers

Dan Rogers

Owner/CEO

Bredan Mechanical

Dan is the CEO of BREDAN Mechanical Systems, Inc., a design/build mechanical engineering and contracting company.  Dan has been involved as a design/build mechanical engineer in the Commercial / Industrial HVAC market for over 39 years. Dan has been providing design solutions for a wide range of HVAC and mechanical applications for commercial facilities, industrial facilities, computer / data centers, clean rooms, engine test cells and a multitude of industrial processes.  Dan started BREDAN Mechanical Systems, Inc. 31 years ago with a goal to provide customers with options for cost effective mechanical design solutions for a wide range of customers with an emphasis on energy efficiency and maximizing system life cycles.

Dan Shelton

Dan Shelton

Dan Shelton

VP CTO in-Residence 

Zscaler

Dan has over 24 years experience in managing large multi-faceted global IT organizations. Prior to joining Zscaler, Dan served as the Senior Director for Global Networks & Telecom at Kelly Services. He was an early adopter of the direct-to-internet branch architecture and leveraged several cloud-based infrastructure and security services to lead a multi-phased Digital Transformation Program across 900 locations in 22 countries.  

Dan also served as a manager at Deloitte Consulting where he focused on helping customers in large-scale Network & Security Transformation Programs and served in multiple global roles at TRW Automotive in the network and data center disciplines.

Dana Guthrie

Dana Guthrie

Dana Guthrie

VP CTO in-Residence 

Zscaler

Dana A. Guthrie is Managing Partner at Gateway Capital, a venture capital firm focused on Wisconsin-based, early-stage startups. Prior to her current role, Guthrie founded and managed Alchemy Angel Investors, an angel investment network. She founded Alchemy while being employed full-time at a Fortune 500 company and managing a multi-million dollar, global product offering.

Guthrie is a two-time patent recipient, holds a B.S. in Computer Engineering from Milwaukee School of Engineering, and a M.S. in Energy Engineering from University of Illinois at Chicago.

Dave Woodward

Dave Woodward

Dave Woodward

Owner 

GranGraeGroup

Dave Woodward is the Founder and Host of Beers with Peers Tap Talks for IT Professionals, Owner of GranGraeGroup, a Sales Agency for IT Consulting, and Co-Owner of Once Upon a Stream, LLC farm

David Henke

David Henke

David Henke

Chief Information Officer 

City of Milwaukee

David Henke is the Chief Information Officer for the City of Milwaukee. As CIO, David oversees the city web services, unified contact center, municipal communications, e-government applications, information technology projects, information technology standards and guidelines, information technology training, cybersecurity, and broadband advocacy.

In 2007, after several years in the private sector telecommunications industry, he joined the City of Milwaukee as a telecommunications analyst project leader. Over the last 15 years he rose progressively through senior roles. In February 2020 the mayor selected him to serve in his cabinet as the Chief Information Officer.

David is an experienced leader of large-scale transformation, organizational change, and restructuring efforts that enable and accelerate enterprise objectives, including promoting the affordability, accessibility, availability, and adoption of broadband for Milwaukee residents. David led the expansion of public Wi-Fi at ten city parks in 2021 and the piloting of low-cost fixed-wireless Internet anchored by neighborhood city buildings in 2022-2023. Currently, he is overseeing IT and cybersecurity preparations for the City of Milwaukee in support of the upcoming Republican National Convention. David also currently represents the City of Milwaukee as a member of the Milwaukee Broadband Partnership, a public-private group advocating for increased broadband adoption throughout the City of Milwaukee.

David holds a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering, and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering, from Michigan Technological University.

DJ Vogel

DJ Vogel

DJ VOGEL

Partner

Ghostscale

DJ is a Partner at Ghostscale and has spent over 20 years consulting and educating others on information security, risk management, IT compliance, and technical security testing. He has hacked into banks, written customized malware to access sensitive client data, and led investigations for companies to find others who did the same without permission. In 2005, DJ founded 403 Labs and grew it into one of the most respected cybersecurity consultancies in the country. After a successful exit to a top 30 professional services firm, DJ went on to share his passions with the next generation of cybersecurity talent as a collegiate professor. Now he's back at it, leading a team of cybersecurity experts to help organizations secure and protect their data.

Eric Ehlers

Eric Ehlers

Eric Ehlers

Former Owner/CEO

Preferred Electrical

A seasoned and creative Master Electrician and Designer of Engineering Systems, Eric Ehlers has been in the electrical industry for over 45 years. Eric was president and owner of Preferred Electrical Contractors from 2001-2022, delivering new and innovative ideas to the industry. He earned his engineering knowledge from MSOE, after completing his apprenticeship through the State of WI. As part of Eric’s work, he’s had the opportunity to design and build an array of Data Centers including, NML North Tower (Milwaukee), Fiserv (Brookfield), (3) major sites for e-Funds including Brown Deer, New Berlin, and Oak Creek, AT&T U-Verse Project, Generac (multiple sites), Deluxe Data (Glendale), and Metal Craft of Mayville (multiple sites) United Healthcare (Milwaukee). He enjoys designing new builds for power and data to help projects run more efficiently and enable better solutions for the future. Eric continues to be active in the industry working at Preferred Electrical Contractors where he is designing R&D facilities for clean energy research.

Erik Wilde

Erik Wilde

Erik Wilde

Executive Vice President Industrial, Americas

Generac

Erik Wilde has served as our Executive Vice President Industrial, Americas since July 2016. He also is the executive sponsor of Generac’s Professional Women’s Resource Business Employee Group. Earlier in his career, Mr. Wilde was Vice President and General Manager of the Mining Division for Komatsu America Corp. Prior to that role, he held additional leadership positions with Komatsu as Vice President of the ICT Business Division and Product Marketing. Mr. Wilde holds a B.B.A. in Management from Boise State University and an M.B.A. from Keller Graduate School of Management.

Fred Jandt

Fred Jandt

Fred Jandt

Senior Privacy Consultant

American Family Insurance

Fred Jandt is a Senior Privacy Consultant at American Family Insurance. In this role he develops and implements privacy solutions to align advanced technologies with Privacy by Design principles, ensuring data use meets established regulatory compliance. Fred is a Certified Information Privacy Technologist with the International Association of Privacy Professionals. A lifelong learner, Fred considers himself a “Many of Many Hats” and values the honest engagement of someone eagerly seeking knowledge. Fred lives outside Madison, with his wife, daughter, and two tiny dogs with fierce barking capabilities.

Greg Marshall

Greg Marshall

GREG MARSHALL

Chief Storyteller and Producer

CI Design

Greg Marshall is Chief Storyteller and Producer at CI Design, a Creative Brand Agency that serves clients nationally and internationally. He assists organizations in creating powerful stories and experiences that create traction and momentum with their audiences and teams. Greg has successfully assisted tech and therapeutics startups in raising funding in their Seed round, Series A, B, C and D. He has won national and international awards for his writing and producing, including three Emmy wins and several Emmy nominations. He is also a Milwaukee Business Journal 40 Under 40 recipient. In the last 13 years, Greg has led alignment, story, and brand workshops with over 140 organizations, and has been a featured keynote speaker on these and other topics related to creativity, purpose, and diversity.

Heather Polen

Heather Polen

Heather Polen

Global VP of Customer Transformation

Sitecore

Heather Polen is the Global Vice President, Customer Transformation at Sitecore where she is responsible for partnering with customers to drive industry inspiration and transformation of digital marketing initiatives.

Prior to joining Sitecore, Heather worked at General Mills where she spent 9+ years building a global digital agency model that served 42 countries. She led a team of 160 marketing and technology professionals as well as an extensive network of partners that represented capabilities in digital strategy, digital development, creative/content production, CRM, loyalty and data and analytics. Heather was also responsible for the development of marketing technology solutions that contributed to multi-million-dollar efficiencies & business growth.

No matter the initiative, Heather is passionate about putting the consumer at the center to deliver remarkable consumer experiences

Jake Krueger

Jake Krueger

Jake Krueger

Partner

Fresh Coast Labs

Jake has thirteen years of experience in sales and business development. He has worked for both Fortune 500 companies and scaled startup businesses into multi-million dollar ventures. During his time in corporate America, he both negotiated and implemented national contracts driving growth from top down and bottom up. As an Account Manager, he consistently grew his territory year over year, increasing revenue and profitability.

Jake Lou

Jake Lou

Jake Lou

Associate Professor of Health Informatics & Administration

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Jake Luo is Associate Professor of Health Informatics and Admininstration at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. His research interest lies in data-driven predictive analysis using machine learning-based algorithms and technologies, such as data mining, natural language processing and knowledge representation and modelling. He is interested in investigating how these computing technologies can be used to improve health care by providing intelligent decision support for clinicians, medical researchers, patients, and policymakers

James O. Wilson

James O. Wilson

James O. Wilson

Acting Regional Director

United States Patent and Trademark Office’s Elijah J. McCoy Midwest Regional Office

James O. Wilson, Acting Regional Director of the Elijah J. McCoy Midwest Regional Office, has worked at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office since January 1989. Mr. Wilson has served on the Executive Board of the Patent and Trademark Office Society and continues to be an active member of the organization. As a Primary Patent Examiner, he served as a Chemical Representative in the Patent Office Professional Association. Mr. Wilson became a Supervisory Patent Examiner (SPE) in Technology Center 1600 in 2002. In 2007, he served as a Managerial Detailee in the Office of the Commissioner for Patents.

During his career, Mr. Wilson has been an instructor for several classes in the Patent Examiner Initial Training Program and has served as a SPE Instructor in the Office of Patent Training. Mr. Wilson also had the distinction of serving as an Acting Director in Technology Center 1600 from November 2013-March 2014 as well as the Acting Director of the Elijah J. McCoy Midwest Regional Office from October 2018-September 2019.

Mr. Wilson received his B.S. in zoology from Howard University in 1984 and an M.S. in cellular and molecular biology from the University of Michigan in 1987.

James Rose

James Rose

James Rose

Head of Private Cellular Networks

UScellular

James is a wireless veteran of over 10 years. He is currently responsible for driving innovation and education businesses on Private Networks and IoT Solutions. Prior to joining UScellular in 2015, James held a variety of leadership, project management, and business sales positions with various industry leading organizations.

Jamie Judkins

Jamie Kimiko Judkins

JAMIE JUDKINS

VP of Business Development

ValorTech

Jamie leverages her 14+ years sales and 7+ years management experience to overachieve revenue, profit, and cultural sales goals. She is a diversity-committed executive and people-focused leader who wholeheartedly believes a strong, intentional focus on DEI within sales teams. She leads all business development functions for ValorTech, including implementation of sales strategies, development and direction of inside and outside sales teams and management of sales budgets and goals.

Jason Achilles

Jason Achilles

Jason Achilles

Former Consultant

Zandef Deksit Inc.; NASA/JPL

Following an early 2022 US tour as keyboardist for Jerry Cantrell (Alice in Chains), JASON ACHILLES now divides his time as a touring multi-instrumentalist / music producer, orchestral composer, and “side gig” as an aerospace entrepreneur, having been featured prominently in WIRED Magazine,  KTLA news and KCRW radio (Los Angeles), as well as internationally with CBC Radio, the BBC, and more. His music and live performance have graced the stages of seedy dive bars and concert halls, from Carnegie Hall to the Super Bowl.

In 2017 Achilles leveraged his audio expertise into technical consulting with NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, ultimately helping bring to Earth the first sounds of the planet Mars as recorded by the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover. Currently he is developing a touring immersive planetarium show that will inspire the public through an unlikely personal journey from music to space.

When not traveling, Achilles performs a monthly musical residency in Pasadena as part of Caltech's widely popular "Astronomy on Tap" series drawing upwards of 500 visitors at each event… and can be frequently spotted with friends from NASA / JPL and Skywalker Sound capturing high-fidelity audio from the numerous rockets launched at Vandenberg Space Force Base in Southern California (and attempting to not have their microphones incinerated).

JasonAchilles.com

Jason W. Johnson

Jason W. Johnson

Dr. Jason W. Johnson

Founder

SoundStrategies

Jason William Johnson is founder of SoundStrategies, a boutique firm that leverages the power of music to make business training and organizational learning more engaging and memorable. He is also an accomplished speaker and recording artist that delivers music infused keynotes and live training workshops. His innovative approach has proven to promote knowledge retention, enhance business competencies, and foster entrepreneurial thinking, all while aligning perfectly with the dynamic needs of cutting-edge businesses. With a background that marries organizational development, entrepreneurship development, and music production, Jason is redefining business education, making him an essential partner for any organization aiming to lead in creativity and innovation. 

Jason has been featured presenter for organizations such National Urban League, ITW, McDonalds Corporation and Verizon, and has been a featured subject matter expert on platforms such as Forbes and NPR. His TEDx Talk, "Four Things that Hip-Hop Taught Me About Business Leadership", has over 60K views. Prior to SoundStrategies, Jason was Director of People & Culture at Next Street, a mission driven firm that designs and implements solutions that connect entrepreneurs and small business owners with the right resources at the right time. He also has served as Director of the Chicago Urban League Center for Entrepreneurship Center, and as adjunct faculty at Illinois Institute of Technology. 

Jason currently serves as faculty for Experiential Classroom, a premier entrepreneur educator clinic that provides university faculty and community entrepreneurship educators with best practices, frameworks, and tools to become amazing entrepreneurship educators. He is also on the Board of Directors for Good Food Catalyst

Jim O'Brien

Jim O'Brien

Jim O'Brien

Director Of Technology Services

American Family Insurance

Jim O'Brien is a seasoned Director of Technology Engineering at American Family Insurance, where he has been leading the charge in technology infrastructure and service delivery since October 2016.  Jim's strategic vision has led to the consolidation of 13 data centers, achieving a 20% reduction in spend.   A champion of both private and public cloud adoption, Jim developed reference architectures and implementations for AWS, facilitating the migration of numerous application teams. His commitment to staff development is unwavering, as evidenced by the comprehensive training program he developed for hundreds of staff members, enhancing their skills in public cloud service delivery, data center infrastructure, and network service delivery.

Jim also has a rich history of roles in information security across various organizations.  Over the last three decades Jim has served as Global IS Security Operations Manager at QBE Insurance, IT Security Officer for the State of Wisconsin - Department of Justice, TDS Telecom as a Security Architect, IT Security Risk Manager at CUNA Mutual Group and as a Security Architect at Alliant Energy.  Each of these roles contributed to Jim's extensive knowledge and leadership in the field of IT security and risk management.

Joan Johnson

Joan Johnson

Joan Johnson

City Librarian

Milwaukee Public Library

Joan Johnson currently serves as the Library Director at the Milwaukee Public Library (MPL). In 2020, she became the twelfth Director, the fourth woman to lead the library, and the first African American in this role. She joined the MPL system in 2006 as Director of Central Library and Special Projects and was promoted to Deputy Director in charge of Public Services in early 2008.

Prior to MPL, Johnson was with the Seattle Public Library (SPL) serving in various management positions including Branch Manager II for Neighborhood Libraries, and as Temporary Manager for SPL’s Magazines, Newspapers and Government Publications Department in the Central Library.

Johnson has a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and earned her MLS in 1995 at the University of Washington in Seattle, WA. Special areas of interest were Government Publications and Bibliographic Instruction.

Joe Herington

Joe Herington

Joe Herington

Vice President - Chief Information & Digital Officer

Charter Manufacturing

Joe has held the position of Chief Information & Digital Officer at Charter Manufacturing since August 2023.  In this capacity, he is responsible for leading the Digital Technology function and collaborating with the businesses on Charter’s digital technology strategy and roadmap execution.  Prior to joining Charter, Joe worked for GE Healthcare for almost 20 years, in a variety of IT leadership roles spanning project/ program management, technical product management, data and analytics, MES, predictive maintenance and application support & maintenance. Most recently, Joe was the CIO for GEHC US-Canada and partnered with business and IT leaders to implement technologies to improve customer and employee experiences. Joe holds an MBA and Bachelor’s degree in Marketing, both from Marquette University.  Outside of work, Joe has been on the i.c.Stars Board since 2023 and a Tech United CIO Advisory Board Member since 2021.

Joe Poeschl

Joe Poeschl

Joe Poeschl

Director of Engagement

MKE Tech Hub Coalition

Joe is on a mission to be a catalyst for inclusive collaboration, strategic innovation, and community connections in Milwaukee. Very fittingly, he’s the Director of Engagement at the MKE Tech Hub Coalition, a non-profit membership organization that fosters a strong, vibrant tech ecosystem in the region

John Bonczek

John Bonczek

John Bonczek

Chief Revenue Officer

1547 Realty

With over two decades of experience in the data center and telecom space, John Bonczek is the driving force behind revenue generation as the Chief Revenue Officer (CRO) at 1547. In his role as CRO, John oversees all of the sales and marketing operations within the organization while bringing 1547's vision, mission, and strategic initiatives to life. As a highly respected industry veteran, John is widely recognized for his outstanding leadership and his ability to steer top-tier sales teams to success. Prior to joining 1547, John served as Vice President at Digital Realty Trust | Telx. He earned his undergraduate degree from Seton Hall University, followed by an MBA from Stillman School of Business.

Joseph Hamann

Joseph Hamann

Dr. Joseph Hamann

Executive Director

Connected Systems Insititute, UWM

Dr. Joe Hamann, Executive Director of Connected Systems Institute at UWM, has a career spanning 18 years in engineering, R&D, and leadership.  Joe has focused his career in engineering on continuously improving people and teams through mentorship and experiential learning.  Joe earned his formal engineering degrees (B.S., M.S., and Ph.D.) in Materials Science and Engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  He started his professional career in 2006 as an R&D engineer with Xtalic Corporation in Marlborough, MA.  In 2010, Joe transitioned into an R&D engineering role with Rexnord Corporation (now Regal Rexnord Corporation), where he found passion for early career engineering talent development.  Joe progressed through various roles in engineering and R&D leadership with Regal Rexnord, leaving the company at a level of Sr. Director of Engineering with responsibility for a global team of 60+ engineering associates.  Throughout his time with Regal Rexnord, Joe built and led structured programs in early career engineering talent development, including University partnership development.  Joe lives in Shorewood, WI with his wife and three sons.

Joseph Zaccaria

Joseph Zaccaria

Joseph Zaccaria

Manager

Rockwell Automation Industry Academia Group

Joseph Zaccaria is a Manager within the Industry – Academia group at Rockwell Automation, working in IOT and cyber-physical systems program development. He has 38 years of industrial experience in oil and gas, petrochemical, water and water, food and beverage, pulp and paper, and more. He holds several patents and a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the University of Pittsburgh-Johnstown.

Julie Ragland

Julie Ragland

Julie Ragland

CIO, Senior Vice President

Navistar, Inc.

Julie Ragland is a transformational executive focused on the intersection of technology and business to drive strategic value.  She is differentiated by demonstrating an ability to work in large multi-cultural organizations, a deep understanding of the influence technology has on business strategy, and an ability to oversee large multi-year roadmaps that drive business outcome.  Her passion is to help companies discover the strategic contribution of technology to both top line and bottom-line results.  She is a respected and collaborative leader in highly matrixed organizations.  She brings extensive international experience having conducted business in over 20 countries and having lived overseas eight years as an expat in London, UK and Dubai, UAE. 

Julie has over 30 years’ experience in the Information Technology field.  Most recently, Julie is the Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer for Navistar, Inc., the manufacturer of International trucks and IC school buses.  Her key focus is developing a roadmap of IT investments that transform the revenue opportunities and bottom-line improvement of the company.  Key to this transformation is a shift to agile working methods, cloud-based modern architecture and digital products and services.  She is responsible for the delivery of the platform that supports Navistar’s Internet of Things (IOT) solution for intelligent vehicles, On Command Connection.  In this role, she advises the company on technical opportunities to shift the product and service portfolio beyond traditional revenue and profit pools.  This includes the monetization of data from vehicles and the exploitation of this rich data source into unique insights and business decisions.  As CIO, she reports to the company’s board of directors on cybersecurity risks and priorities for both the enterprise and embedded vehicle technologies.

Prior to Navistar, Julie spent nearly 15 years with Johnson Controls and Adient, the spin-off of Johnson Controls’ Tier 1 automotive division.  At Adient, she was a key member of the leadership team that established the company’s first IT organization and orchestrated the IT spin-off of a $16B organization.  Prior to that she spent nearly 15 years with Ernst & Young and Cap Gemini as an IT advisor to large multi-national companies undergoing significant IT transformation.  In this role she was responsible to help companies undertake large, complex organizational changes driven by the introduction of new IT capabilities. 

Julie holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management.  She was previously licensed by the state of Wisconsin, now inactive, as a Certified Public Accountant.  Julie serves on the Board Governance committee of the Women’s Fund of Greater Milwaukee and she serves as board advisor to the United Way’s Technology United and i.c.stars – Wisconsin.

Leah Newman

Leah Newman

Dr. Leah Newman

Associate Professor and Program Director for Industrial Engineering

Milwuakee School of Engineering (MSOE)

Leah Newman, Ph.D., is an associate professor and the program director for the Industrial Engineering (IE) program at the Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE), where she has worked since the fall of 2007.  Prior to coming to MSOE, Dr. Newman taught for four years at The Pennsylvania State University (Penn State).  Dr. Newman’s research interests are in the study and design of medium- to large- scale systems, particularly as it relates to the “human factors” needs of the system.  Specifically, she is interested in further exploring the area of social innovation as it relates to issues of culture and organization and job design, to name a few.  During her time at MSOE, Dr. Newman has taught classes in the area of Human Factors/Ergonomics, Applied Statistics, Financial Engineering, Team Facilitation and Leadership, Project Management, Safety and Engineering Socio-technical Systems.  Dr. Newman received her B.S., M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in IE from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Lorrie Lisek

Lorrie Lisek

Lorrie Lisek

Executive Director

Wisconsin Clean Cities

Lorrie Lisek, Executive Director, Wisconsin Clean Cities (WCC): Lorrie Lisek is the president and co-owner of Legacy Environmental Services, Inc., an Indiana Certified Women's Business Enterprise. Lisek has served as Executive Director of Wisconsin Clean Cities since 2011. The coalition works locally in urban, suburban, and rural communities to strengthen our nation’s environment, energy security and economic prosperity through the U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Cities and Communities program. WCC builds partnerships to advance affordable, efficient, and clean transportation fuels and technologies. Under Lisek’s leadership, WCC was named a U.S. EPA SmartWay Affiliate Challenge Honoree for the coalition’s role in reducing freight emissions. Lisek has also been instrumental in securing more than $40 million in funding for coalition and member advanced fuel and technology projects. In 2015, Lorrie was inducted into the U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Cities Hall of Fame. She was also recognized by the late U.S. Sen. Richard Lugar as an Indiana Energy Patriot and is the recipient of the Northwest Indiana One Region Outstanding Achievement Award.

Maribeth Achterberg

Maribeth Achterberg

Maribeth Achterberg

CITO

The Boldt Group

Maribeth Achterberg is Chief Information & Technology Officer and an executive leadership team member at The Boldt Group. In this role, she drives IT solution design, builds, and implements solutions for global, craft, and specialty brands. She leads an organization 200 professional employees.  Her organization includes serves to all entities of The Boldt Group including The Boldt Company, Boldt Holdings, Eprix and Calnin & Goss.. Previously to her role at Boldt, she held positions at Molson Coors, Johnson Controls, Schneider National, Sodexo, Verity Management Solutions, and Knowledge InterSpace. She holds a Master of Science in Engineering Management from Milwaukee School of Engineering. She is certified in Private Company Governance; as a Lean Practitioner and a Zachman certified Enterprise Architect. She serves on the state board of Women in Technology Wisconsin and is a steering committee member of Milwaukee Women, Inc, an organization that works to place women on boards; a member of the Society of Information Management Wisconsin, the Professional Directors Association, and is an IT United Way TechforGood program guest CIO. She is also a member of the CDO Magazine Global Editorial Board. Maribeth is a technology published author and public speaker who focuses on the topics ranging from lean agile to the value of data.

Matt Friedel

Matt Friedel

MATT FRIEDEL

Senior Lecturer

UWM School of Information Studies

Matthew specializes in Web 3.0: Blockchain, AI Artificial Intelligence, and ML Machine Learning. He is co-founder of Milwaukee Venture Partners Angel Network, Previous Director of the UWM Business Innovation Incubator, co-founder of UWM’s Disruptive Technologies Lab, and Senior Lecturer at UWM’s Lubar College of Business and the School of Information Studies. He is also an adjunct faculty member at Marquette University. He teaches a graduate level class at UWM: Applied Web 3.0: Artificial Intelligence and Blockchain. Matt was recently featured in the BizTimes as one of Wisconsin’s 275 Most Influential Business Leaders. He was also named a Notable Leader in Higher Education for the Class of 2023. He holds a B.S. in Engineering from UWM. He earned an M.S. in Engineering and MBA from Marquette with a focus on entrepreneurship and holds a Professional Engineering (PE) License from the State of Wisconsin. 

Michael Barrett

Michael Barrett

Michael Barrett

CIO

Potawatomi Ventures

Michael Barrett serves as Chief Information Officer for Potawatomi Ventures where he is responsible for driving the overall strategy and direction for IT and infrastructure development across the company and its subsidiaries. Bringing his expertise in information technology and strategic business growth, he is actively involved in the overall strategic direction and long-term growth plans for Potawatomi Ventures.  

Previously, Michael served as Chief Technology Officer at River Run Managed Services, and Senior Director of Digital Products at Northwestern Mutual. Michael’s career highlights include extensive experience in business consulting, technology operations, and revenue growth strategies. He specializes in aligning technology initiatives with business objectives and driving operational efficiencies and profitability.  

In addition to his work at Potawatomi Ventures, Barrett serves on the Cedarburg Education Foundation Board as Technology Committee Chair. He also is a part of the Village of Grafton Fire Department as a firefighter, master pump operator, and emergency medical technician. In addition to that, Barrett serves as Division President for Ozaukee County’s Mutual Aid Box Alarm System (MABAS).  

Barrett earned his Executive MBA at Marquette University, and his bachelor’s degree in political science and public policy analysis from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.  

Molly Mulroy

Molly Mulroy

Molly Mulroy

Executive Vice President & Chief Administrative Officer

WEC Energy Group

Molly Mulroy was named executive vice president and chief administrative officer in August 2021.

 

In this role, Mulroy has responsibility for Administrative Services, Facility Management, Human Resources, IT Services, and IT System Strategy and Development. She assumed additional responsibility for Supply Chain and Supplier Diversity in December 2021.

 

Mulroy previously served as vice president and chief information officer for WEC Energy Group since June 2015, with responsibility for a centralized information technology function, including technology security and providing infrastructure support and applications for all operating areas of the company and corporate center departments.

Since joining the company in 1999, she has held a number of management and leadership positions in Customer Service, Customer Operations, Finance, Wholesale Energy and Fuels, and Regulatory Affairs. She also served as a principal representative in State Government Affairs. Mulroy served as director — credit and collections from 2008 to 2012 and director — supply chain from 2012 to 2013. Mulroy was named director — information services for We Energies in April 2013. She was appointed to vice president and chief information officer when WEC Energy Group was formed in 2015.

Mulroy earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Minnesota and her Master of Business Administration from the University of Chicago.

Mulroy is currently chair of the Milwaukee Tech Hub and vice-chair of Next Door.

Nadiyah Johnson

Nadiyah Johnson

Nadiyah Johnson

Founder

Jet Constellations & Milky Way Tech Hub

Nadiyah Johnson is a 3x graduate of Marquette University with a bachelor’s degree in computer science, a master’s degree in computational science and a Ph.D. in computer science. Her doctoral research focuses on artificial intelligence and has granted her recognition at several conferences around the globe. She currently serves as a professor in the computer science department at Marquette.

 

Nadiyah’s passion for diversity in STEM fueled the launch of her company, Jet Constellations, a Milwaukee-based technology company. Jet Constellations’ social impact initiative, the Milky Way Tech Hub, functions to promote racial diversity in the tech industry through STEM education and entrepreneurship programming as well as building a nurturing ecosystem of diverse techies and entrepreneurs.

 

As the founder of a for-profit company as well as an impact-driven initiative, Nadiyah is propelled by a desire to uplift her community, including the 53206 ZIP code in Milwaukee, which incarcerates the most Black men in the nation. Her efforts currently focus on educational and technological investments, and she aspires to one day replicate this model in other communities around the U.S. She is currently realizing the vision of Milwaukee as the “Milky Way Tech Hub,” a tech ecosystem that represents and serves all parts of Milwaukee’s diverse population.

Prior to launching Jet Constellations and the Milky Way Tech Hub, Nadiyah worked at GE HealthCare as a technical product manager with a specialty in data science. In 2020, Nadiyah was named to the Milwaukee Business Journal’s prestigious 40 Under 40 list, and in 2022, she was given one of the same publication’s Diversity in Business awards. In 2022, Nadiyah and her company were recipients of the Jrue & Lauren Holiday Fund’s Social Impact Fund grant.

In her free time, Nadiyah is an artist. She enjoys painting on canvas as well as creating digital art; she occasionally sells her art in pop-up shops and at local art fairs. When she is not painting or working in the community, she is spending quality time with her family, likely beating them at chess.

Nathan Lasnoski

Nathan Lasnoski

Nathan Lasnoski

Chief Technology Officer

Concurrency

Nathan Lasnoski is the Chief Technology Officer of Concurrency, a CIO/CTO advisor, a 14x Microsoft MVP, and a frequent speaker at 100s of events and conferences. I help companies look at the mission of their organization through the lens of transformative technology. I have spent the last 21 years advising enterprise organizations on their technology strategy, challenging them to think boldly and with courage. I work hand-in-hand with business and technology leaders to think about their organization’s mission through the lens of technology acceleration. I am an artificial intelligence, innovation, and cloud ecosystems leader, enabling businesses to take advantage of the benefits to bring about operational savings or revenue production. I am on the short-list of Milwaukee/Midwest leaders in IT and contribute both professionally and community-wide enabling tech throughout organizations that promote everyone having a place to make an impact in tech. Having worked with 100s of companies to build technology strategies, I provide executive, strategic, and practical impact.

Orlando Lopez

Orlando Lopez

Orlando Lopez

President

Syngergy Technology Advisors, Inc.

Orlando Lopez is the President of Synergy Technology Advisors, Inc., a pioneering technology firm headquartered in Milwaukee, WI, which he co-founded in 2006. Under his leadership, Synergy has emerged as a frontrunner in the local technology market, experiencing continuous growth year after year. Beyond his professional endeavors, Orlando is deeply ingrained in the community, dedicating his time to coaching high school girls' varsity and JV lacrosse teams in Waukesha, a city nearby Milwaukee. His commitment to youth sports extends to his previous roles coaching football and hockey.  Orlando's educational background includes studies at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, where he not only excelled academically but also played a pivotal role as the inaugural President of Latinos Unidos. This experience laid the foundation for his passion to advocate for underrepresented communities in the technology sector. Driven by a desire to bridge the gap in IT representation, Orlando's mission extends beyond his business success. He aims to mentor and guide individuals from diverse backgrounds, empowering them to access opportunities within the technology industry. Through his leadership and advocacy, Orlando aspires to create a more inclusive and prosperous future for individuals and families alike.

Patrick Ruffino

Patrick Ruffino

Patrick Ruffino

Infrastructure Solutions Architect

AE Business Solutions 

Senior Solutions Architect with over a decade of experience in designing and implementing cutting-edge solutions. Excel in crafting holistic, scalable, and innovative architectures that empower organizations to thrive in today's dynamic digital era. Possess a deep understanding of emerging technologies, cloud computing, and security best practices to translate business needs into efficient, cost-effective, and sustainable solutions, driving growth and ensuring long-term success for my clients. Passionate about continuous learning and collaborating to transform ideas into reality and navigate the ever-evolving technology landscape.

Reshad Alam

Reshad Alam

Reshad Alam

Chief information security officer

Regal Rexnord

Reshad Alam serves as the Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) at Regal Rexnord. In this role, Reshad oversees cybersecurity and compliance, notably developing a cybersecurity framework aligned with NIST guidelines and establishing IT General Controls (ITGC) on a global scale.

Prior to Regal, Reshad was at Datasite and accenture where he held positions as Data Services manager and Server Systems manager supporting global business and customer initiatives including IT audit, security, project management and disaster recovery.

Reshad is passionate about creating a secure technical foundation for digital growth and leads the development of a comprehensive, cross-functional chatbot for Regal Rexnord associates, aimed at enhancing multi-application integration.

Ricardo Navarro

Ricardo Navarro

Ricardo Navarro

Senior Vice President - Global Telecom & DC Infrastructure

Generac Power Systems

Ricardo Navarro joined Generac in 2014. He has hold different roles in the organization including Senior Vice President and President of the Latam/International Business Group. Since 2021, Ricardo serves as Senior Vice President of the Global Telecom & DC Infrastructure business as well as, more recently, President/GM of Constructiv (a Generac subsidiary and a Data Center Design and Construction company). Prior to joining Generac, Ricardo was President and CEO of Pramac Industries Inc. and Pramac America LLC as well as Americas Managing Director between 2006 to 2014 working for Italian generator manufacturer, Pramac Group, prior to Generac’s acquisition.  Ricardo holds a Bachelor Degree in Industrial Engineering from Universidad Politecnica de Cartagena (Spain), and M.B.A from ENAE Business School as well as an Advance Management Program from Harvard Business School.

Richard Scudellari

Richard Scudellari

RICHARD SCUDELLARI

Founder

Penny Jar

Rich Scudellari is a Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Penny Jar Capital. Before Penny Jar, Rich was the Investment Partner for SC30 Inc, the off-court business of two-time NBA MVP and four-time NBA Champion, Stephen Curry. Previously, Rich founded an SMB software company building infrastructure in the creator economy and spent several years at TPG and Morgan Stanley. Rich has an MBA from Stanford and a degree in Electrical Engineering from Yale where he played football. Rich lives in Milwaukee with his wife and three girls.

Robert Dana

Robert Dana

Robert Dana

Integration & Automation Specialist

MuleSoft

Robert serves as a subject matter expert guiding organizations through data integration strategies and corresponding architectures; coupled with a focus on reducing manual processes at an enterprise scale.

He has been with MuleSoft for 2 years. Prior to MuleSoft Robert supported teams across the globe, formulating and actioning on multi faceted data and analytics strategies at Gartner and Infor.

Rogelio Villanueva

Rogelio Villanueva

Rogelio Villanueva

Director of Global Web Marketing

SHURE

Rogelio is the Director of Global Web Marketing at Shure, where he leads the strategic planning and execution of Shure’s web presence, serving both B2B and B2C customers globally. He manages the full web team and collaborates with global stakeholders to set priorities and initiatives. Known for his high energy and teamwork, Rogelio builds solid relationships and delivers top-tier results with integrity and business acumen.

A digital marketing and technology professional, Rogelio brings vast industry experience in customer experience, data storytelling, and crafting and implementing effective global digital marketing strategies. He has successfully implemented Sitecore and other CMS systems and managed multiple web redesigns, driving efficiency and productivity throughout his career. His expertise extends to technology improvements and digital transformation, as well as leading effective teams. Throughout his career, his ability to design system improvements has consistently driven efficiency, engagement, and productivity.

Beyond his professional achievements, Rogelio is passionate about technology, digital marketing, and music. As a musician, he has performed for audiences of various sizes, blending his creative and technical talents.

Ross Harmsen

Ross Harmsen

Ross Harmsen

Industry 4.0 Business Development Manager

UScellular

As the UScellular Industry 4.0 Business Development Manager, Ross is a graduate of University of Wisconsin and has 25+ years of global enterprise sales and marketing experience within the Fortune 1000 and Federal Government markets.  As a result, he’s had the opportunity to help some of the world’s largest organizations address their critical business and operational challenges with innovative and emerging technological solutions. Most recently, Ross led the “Smart Factory” solutions efforts at Fii (Foxconn Industrial Internet) which included Private Cellular Networking (PCN) and Artificial Intelligence (AI).  Ross is passionate about helping manufacturers become globally competitive and bringing manufacturing back to the United States.

 

Russ Kennedy

Russ Kennedy

Russ Kennedy

Chief Evangelist

NasUni

Russ is a well-known and highly regarded storage industry executive, with more than 25 years of experience developing software and hardware solutions to address exponential data growth. Before Nasuni, Russ directed product strategy at private cloud object storage pioneer Cleversafe through its $1.3 billion acquisition by IBM. While Russ was helping transition the product to what is now IBM Cloud Object Storage (COS), he began working with IBM partner Nasuni, and became convinced Nasuni’s cloud-native global file system is the only data management technology that truly exploits the strengths of object storage.

Ryan Brooks

Ryan Brooks

Ryan Brooks

CTO & GM

Data Holdings

As CTO and General Manager of Data Holdings, Ryan oversees strategy, operations, and business development. Data Holdings is a top-tier public data center in Milwaukee that many of the region’s enterprises and organizations entrust with their applications and data. Data Holdings is a subsidiary of Potawatomi Ventures, which is owned by the Forest County Potawatomi tribe.

Ryan has previously worked with large organizations including Time Warner, Kohl’s, UPS, and British Telecom. He specializes in assisting with large scale public-facing applications and networks and is often involved with new product/service development. He enjoys internetworking, hardware and software development and the rapid pace of change in the technology economy. Compliance and security continue to be top priorities.

He's founded or co-founded three startups, two of which resulted in exits.

Ryan Moylan

Ryan Moylan

Ryan Moylan

Industry Advisor

Salesforce

Ryan serves as an Industry Advisor for Salesforce, specifically helping executives and corporations prioritize, sequence and execute digital transformation investments. He has been at Salesforce for 8-years and currently leads the Industrials vertical across the United States and Canada. Prior to Salesforce he specialized in valuing companies and structuring complex mergers and acquisitions.

Scott Schanke

Scott Schanke

SCOTT SCHANKE

Assistant Professor of Information Technology Management

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Director

Center for Technology Innovation

Scott Schanke is an Assistant Professor of Information Technology Management at UWM's Lubar College of Business at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. His research seeks to identify and quantify effective approaches to the design and implementation of the entities that represent firms and brands in customer interactions, e.g., AI-enabled conversational agents and digital brand personalities. To causally identify the merits and detriments of alternative design characteristics, he has employed a combination of controlled laboratory experiments, as well as field experiments in partnership with several U.S.-based firms.

Sean Lightner

Sean Lightner

Sean Lightner

Director of BMO Technology Banking – Growth & Innovation

BMO

With 15+ years of commercial banking experience, Sean brings in-depth knowledge and understanding of the technology sector and clients’ needs. Prior to joining BMO in 2008, Sean started his career with ABN AMRO where he held various roles within commercial banking including credit structuring and relationship management. Sean holds a B.S. in Finance from Indiana University. He has spent the last 5 years exclusively covering the Technology & Innovation sector helping clients with a variety of banking needs.

Shelby Whalen

Shelby Whalen

Shelby Whalen

Elevate Program Coordinator

Brooksource

Shelby Whalen manages Brooksource's workforce transformation program, Elevate, for Wisconsin-based Fortune 500 clients. She collaborates with community organizations, leveraging partnerships to facilitate successful transitions into the IT field.

Sheldon Cuffie

Sheldon Cuffie

Sheldon Cuffie

Vice President & Enterprise Chief Information Security Officer (CISO)

American Family Insurance

Sheldon is a technology thought-leader of 30 years focused on enabling business outcomes through technology and innovation. As Vice President & Enterprise Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) at American Family Insurance, he is responsible for cybersecurity engineering, incident response, information risk management, and disaster recovery across the American Family portfolio of companies.

Previously, Sheldon was VP & Chief Information Officer of American Family Insurance, VP & Global CISO of Dell Technologies, and VP & CISO at Northwestern Mutual. Earlier in his career, Sheldon started as an IT analyst, assuming increasing levels of leadership responsibility in engineering and architecture disciplines for Kohl’s, M&I Bank, Harley-Davidson, Abbott Laboratories, and Northwestern Mutual. Sheldon also served nine years in the Wisconsin Army National Guard as an enlisted soldier in telecommunications, signal, and artillery roles.

Sheldon is a proud graduate of Milwaukee Trade and Technical High School (now Bradley Tech) within Milwaukee Public Schools. He earned a BA in Management and Communications from Concordia University Wisconsin and an MS in Organizational Leadership with honors from Quinnipiac University.

Sheldon actively volunteers his time and resources to the Milwaukee community serving as a Board Director of the United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County, the Audit Committee of UW Hospital System / UW Health, and Trustee & Vice-Chairman of Greater Mt. Sinai Church.

Sheldon is married to his wife, Celeste, of 30 years. They have two adult children, Alyssa and Zach.

Stephanie Hoskins

Stephanie Hoskins

Stephanie Hoskins

Herbert Kohler Frank Jacobson Chair in Business & Entrepreneurship

Lakeland University

Founder

Debtle

Stephanie Hoskins is the Herbert Kohler Frank Jacobson Chair in Business & Entrepreneurship at Lakeland University, and the founder of Debtle, a software startup that helps people access the financial assistance programs and community resources they are eligible for so they can pay their bills. Prior to launching her startup, Stephanie graduated from Tulane University and LSU and spent 14 years in New Orleans working in healthcare finance and strategy. Prior to academia and startup life, Stephanie worked for Amedisys, Ochsner Health System, and Walgreens. She coaches student entrepreneurs, teaches corporation innovation, runs Jake's, Lakeland's center for entrepreneurship & innovation, and is a Ph.D. candidate in financial economics at LSU.  She currently resides in Kohler with her husband, 3 small children, and dog. 

Stephen Magnuson

Stephen Magnuson

Stephen Magnuson

Vice President of Corporate IT

Regal Rexnord

As Vice President of Corporate IT at Regal Rexnord, Stephen Magnuson spearheads the strategic and operational aspects of global Infrastructure and Applications portfolios. Leading a team that oversees multiple instances of Oracle and SAP, Stephen caters to over 36,000 associates across 220 global locations, contributing to an annual revenue of $7BN.

In this role, Stephen brings over 20 years of experience to executive leadership, change management, and strategic planning. From January 2022 to November 2023, he served as VP of Global IT Infrastructure, playing a pivotal role in defining comprehensive IT infrastructure strategies and aligning business and technology goals. His accomplishments include successfully managing acquisition and deployment processes, assessing associated risks, and ensuring operational excellence in network, desktop, and server infrastructure.

Prior to joining Regal Rexnord, Stephen spent 18 years at 3M, where he progressed from a Manager of U.S. Distributed IT Infrastructure to Senior Director, overseeing IT integration of 3M’s largest acquisition. His experience includes standardizing legacy systems, accelerating systems integration, and implementing Lean Six Sigma practices.

Stephen holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Metropolitan State University and a Master’s in Organizational Change Leadership from the University of Wisconsin – Platteville.

Steve McQuin

Steve McQuin

Steve McQuin

Co-Founder & CEO

Farwell

Steve has over 25 years of consulting with a focus on tailoring solutions for transformational changes, often driven by digital acceleration. FarWell is in its 11th year of helping mid-sized and enterprise clients align on, design, and deliver digital transformation, technology modernization, and business growth strategies. Organizational design, upskilling and re-skilling teams, and scaling adoption using organizational change strategies are top of mind for companies considering enterprise implementations of AI.

Tami Garrison

Tami Garrison

Tami Garrison

Senior Director of Social Responsibility

Generac

Tami Garrison is a corporate affairs leader with over 15 years of experience developing, executing and evaluating strategic corporate social responsibility programs that align with community needs and business objectives. In her current role as the Senior Director of Social Responsibility at Generac, she has oversight for the company’s community programs as well as Diversity, Equity & Inclusion initiatives. She also serves on the company’s ESG Steering Committee and oversees the reporting of social responsibility metrics and narratives.

Tami is a highly engaged non-profit board director with expertise in board governance, strategic planning and non-profit leadership. She has an extensive history of serving the Milwaukee community and currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Milwaukee Parks Foundation, VISIT Milwaukee and the Zoological Society of Milwaukee.

Tarik Moody

Tarik Moody

Tarik Moody

Program Director

HYFIN

Born in July 1973 in Louisville, Kentucky, and having spent most of my early life in Atlanta, my journey has been anything but linear. I received a 4-year scholarship from Army ROTC to attend Howard University, where I graduated in 1996 from the School Of Architecture. My career began in architecture, working in Detroit and Minneapolis, but my passion for music and culture eventually led me to a completely different path. I served in the Army Reserves for 14 years and am a veteran. My military service has been a defining part of my life, providing me with experiences and a sense of discipline that have been invaluable in my career and personal development.

My involvement in volunteering for a local community radio station, KFAI, in Minneapolis, was a turning point. I co-hosted the station’s long-running show, “Groove Garden." In 2006, I made the leap from architecture to radio when I was approached by the new Milwaukee radio station 88Nine Radio Milwaukee. I am now the Director of Digital and program director for HYFIN, Radio Milwaukee Urban Alternative station. As the program director for HYFIN, I am steering the course of 88Nine Radio Milwaukee's Urban Alternative station, which launched on Juneteenth Day, June 19, 2022. HYFIN is a vibrant platform that celebrates the full spectrum of Black music and culture, resonating with the heart of the Black community in Milwaukee and beyond.

In 2005, I launched Rhythm Lab Radio on Minnesota Public Radio's station The Current, a show that has since become a national sensation. As the host and producer, Rhythm Lab Radio is a trailblazing weekly program that shakes up the urban music scene by blending genres like jazz, electronic, hip-hop, and soul. Known for its dedication to musical diversity, Rhythm Lab Radio is now nationally syndicated, resonating through cities such as Philadelphia on WXPN-FM, Chicago on Vocalo-FM at WBEZ, Chapel Hill on WUNC, Norfolk on WHRV-FM, and Baltimore on WTMD, bringing its eclectic urban sound to a wider audience and redefining what urban radio can be. I am also a contributor to NPR Music's All Songs Considered.

My fascination with technology and AI is not just about the tools themselves but their potential to transform how we live, work, and create. In 2018, I founded 88Nine Labs, a platform that significantly influenced Milwaukee's tech scene through a series of dynamic and groundbreaking events. My work in digital strategy and innovation is driven by a belief in the power of technology to foster community, enhance creativity, and democratize access to information. Harnessing the power of AI, I have recently spearheaded an exciting development at 88Nine Radio Milwaukee, partnering with Super Hi-Fi to create a 24/7 online version of my show, "Rhythm Lab Radio." This AI-driven technology enhances the listener experience by providing seamless scheduling and automation. It's a pioneering move in public radio, demonstrating how AI can revolutionize traditional media and create engaging, personalized content for our audience around the clock.

Tere Sackerson

Tere Sackerson

Tere Sackerson

Managing Director: U.S. National TPS Executive Leader

BMO

Tere Sackerson boasts a distinguished 26-year tenure in banking, commencing in 1998 with a specialization in Treasury Management. She champions the industry's technological evolution, ignited by the Check 21 legislation, propelling banking into the digital era. As Managing Director at BMO, she exercises strategic oversight of their TPS U.S. operations within the Financial Institution Group (FIG), Correspondent Banking and Institutional Markets (IM), encompassing key sectors such as Government, Healthcare, Higher Education, and Not-for-Profit. Additionally, Tere is deeply committed to community service, exemplified by her board roles at Penfield Montessori Academy, Milwaukee Marathon, and Betty Brinn. Presently, she channels her passion for community engagement through Discovery World, Penfield Children's Center, and Tempo.

Tim Dickson

Tim Dickson

Tim Dickson

Chief Digital & Information Officer

Regal Rexnord

Tim Dickson has served as Regal Rexnord’s Chief Digital and Information Officer (CDIO) since October 2023. Tim previously served as the first-ever CIO at Generac Power Systems from 2020-2023, the Vice President of Front Office IT at Motorola Solutions from 2015-2018, and additionally served as a divisional CIO leading Emerging Technologies, M&A, and User Experience for Dell, Inc from 2004-2015.

At Regal Rexnord, Tim is responsible for leading the organization’s digital and information technology functions. He’s accountable for the strategy, management, transformation, and execution of Regal Rexnord’s global digital and IT organization. Additionally, Tim is responsible for building an industry-leading digital capability to further enhance decision making across the organization and continually exceed our e-commerce customers’ expectations.

Tim has a passion for leading Digital Transformation efforts, upskilling and investing in Digital Talent, and helping to make the greater Milwaukee area and the state of Wisconsin a popular tech hub. Tim enjoys sharing emerging technology best practices, coaching and mentoring, and volunteering for numerous community service events in the area.

Tina Chang

Tina Chang

Tina Chang

CEO

SysLogic

Tina Chang is the Chairman and CEO of SysLogic, Inc, serving clients for over 28 years in the areas of Technology Strategy & Digital Transformation, Information Management & Business Intelligence, Cybersecurity, and Software Development. Tina has maintained a strong background in business leadership and technology innovation, and she has leveraged SysLogic to launch four technology start-ups (SysSpark, LLC, Cyberspect, LLC, WillBridge, LTD, and Ghostscale, LLC). Prior to SysLogic, Tina worked for Andersen Consulting (Accenture), where she served as a business analyst and consultant to Fortune 500 companies.  

Tina currently serves on the boards of STRATTEC Security Corporation, Weyco Group, and Central States Manufacturing. She has demonstrated a dedication to her community through her leadership and board responsibilities with Alverno College, Children’s Wisconsin, MMAC, Midwest Cyber Security Alliance, Milwaukee Police Department Foundation, Milwaukee Public Schools Foundation, Wisconsin Policy Forum, Teach for America, Waukesha County Business Alliance, and YMCA of Greater Milwaukee. 

Originally from New York, Tina attended the University of Wisconsin–Madison, where she received a BBA degree with an emphasis in Marketing and International Business, and the University of Copenhagen, Denmark, where she specialized in environmental accounting and European commerce. 

Todd Kelly

Todd Kelly

Todd Kelly

Sr. VP of Solutions Engineering

Step CG

Todd is responsible for the strategic direction of STEP technology and solution offerings to our clients. Prior to joining STEP, he was the Chief Security Officer at Cradlepoint, and also served as Vice President of Solution Engineering. Prior to Cradlepoint, he held global engineering leadership positions at Starent Networks (Cisco), 3Com, USRobotics, and several startups in the field of intelligent wireless, 4G/5G cellular and wireline networking.

Todd is a seasoned network architect and cyber security leader with over 20 years of experience with enterprise and mobile network infrastructure. He is known for leading technology teams, delivering innovative, yet pragmatic solutions to enterprises as they build secure wired and wireless network infrastructure.

Todd earned a Master of Science in Information Technology from Northwestern University, a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering Technology from Southern Illinois University, and holds a CISSP® Certification, with several other cyber technology and cyber risk management credentials.

Troy Vosseller

Troy Vosseller

Troy Vosseller

Partner

Gener8or

gener8tor runs accelerators to catalyze community, mentorship, network, conviction and capital to bridge a community’s genius with opportunity. Started in 2012, today gener8tor operates venture capital funds and startup accelerators across 44 cities, 22 states and 3 countries, working with more than 300 startups per year. To date, gener8tor has worked with more than 1,300 startups that have cumulatively gone on to raise more than $2B in follow-on capital and employ more than 10,000 people.

Tyler Muncy

Tyler Muncy

Tyler Muncy

Google Cloud Sales Executive

Google

Tyler Muncy has spent 10 years in the technology services industry, helping more than 50 companies leverage technology solutions to solve business problems. Having spent his entire career at TEKsystems, he began by focusing on helping customers modernize their infrastructure by adopting hybrid and multi-cloud strategies before moving into a full-stack Client Partner role where he has helped build solutions across the Data, Cloud, Security, and other technology landscapes. Today, he runs TEKsystems’ customer strategy for the central US and is fully-dedicated to the company’s Google Cloud business unit focusing on data modernization, AI/ML, and other key areas of customers’ digital transformations.

Yusuf Abu-Hatoum

Yusuf Abu-Hatoum

Yusuf Abu-Hatoum

Chief Information & Technology Officer

Palermo's Pizza

As a battle tested IT leader, Yusuf has successfully created new organizations and revitalized struggling ones. He is passionate about digital transformation that uses information technology to exceed customer expectations. Focusing on prioritizing the customer experience in all aspects of enterprise IT delivery, he shares his customer-centric approach with his teams who consistently deliver solutions that delight customers and drive positive business outcomes. Over his career Yusuf has successful led (and is currently leading at Palermo’s) ERP initiatives that not only optimize internal operations but also greatly enhance his customer’s experience.

Zhen Zeng

Zhen Zeng

Dr. Zhen Zeng

Assistant Professor of Computer Science

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Zhen Zeng is Assistant Professor of Computer Science at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Dr. Zeng’s general research interest lies in effectively securing distributed systems, networks, and cloud environments. She is interested in cloud security, network security, AI for cybersecurity, and the integration of cybersecurity and computer science education. She has served on the federal grant review panel, the technical program committee and the organization committee for conferences and workshops on cloud computing and cybersecurity. She has worked in the high-tech industry focusing on power management and cloud computing services for years and looks forward to interdisciplinary research collaborations.