Jason Allen AshlockFounder, Frontier Press
The shared architecture of our lives is story.
As leaders and teammates, salespeople and customers, creators of strategy and engineers of comebacks, we are first and foremost authors of stories. In all of our endeavors, across our pasts and presents and futures, we build meaning from the narratives we shape and share.
In fast-paced, inventive keynotes across a range of topics, Jason brings to life the powerful logic of storytelling for ourselves, our tribes, our companies, our partnerships, and our customers. Explore how customer service transformation in companies around the world is being driven by fresh understanding of a customers' narrative experience. Discover how sales teams across industries are fashioning reinvigorated strategies with storytelling at their core. Learn how leaders and change agents of all kinds are winning influence and increasing stakeholder buy-in through the precise use of narrative logic. And learn how to surface and broadcast stories of your own to connect, motivate and persuade.
Rick BoydVP of Sales, ShoreTel
Rick Boyd is VP of Sales at ShoreTel. His tenure with ShoreTel spans over 10 years. During his 30 year career in Communications, Rick has been in Sr. Management positions with Mitel, Cisco & Verisign.
Mike CisekResearch Director, IT Operations, Gartner
Mike Cisek is a Research Director focusing on Infrastructure and Operations in Midmarket. Mr. Cisek works with clients on IT budgeting, cost optimization, infrastructure design and operations management solutions tailored to unique needs of the Midmarket. He spent more than 23 years as a technologist with extensive knowledge of servers, storage, networking and virtualization.
Prior to joining Gartner, Mr. Cisek held the title of Director of Emerging Infrastructure & Operations Support for a $300 million transportation company. Under his leadership, his team was honored by CIO Magazine and Midsize Enterprise Summit, and was listed twice on the Information Week 500.
Mr. Cisek directed a team of 17 I&O professionals who provided project and support services for a 24-site enterprise. His areas of responsibility included networks, systems, storage, virtualization, enterprise architecture, service desk, client support, mobility, reporting, and telecommunications.
Heather ColellaResearch VP, Gartner
As a research Vice President for Gartner's Office of the CIO, Heather Colella works hard to make the difficult easy when helping CIOs improve their contribution to business results. She is passionate about strategy, governance, effective communications and Gartner clients' personal success. Ms. Colella's motto is: "Your Success Is My Joy" because when she works with clients on a daily basis, she feels energized by the results the clients achieve using Gartner research. Ms. Colella's experience has been invested as a management consultant, developing information technology strategies, architectures and plans for major corporations. She has been a CEO of her own management consulting firm, was a Managing Director with KPMG/BearingPoint, a Senior Manager with KPMG/Nolan, Norton & Co., and a Consultant with both Gemini Consulting and IBM.
Keith CollinsCIO, SAS
Keith Collins directed R&D at SAS for most of his career, including 13 years as chief technology officer. His latest charter is to redefine the role of IT from tactical to strategic, and to accelerate SAS in cloud computing. Collins, a graduate of North Carolina State University in computer science, is a founding member of the computer science department’s strategic advisory board. In 2003, NC State named him a Distinguished Engineering Alumnus. Collins is an adviser for Bull City Venture Partners and a patron of the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences.
Domingo CortesWest Sales Director, Hewlett-Packard Enterprise
Domingo Cortes is a seasoned sales executive who specializes in the development of high-performance sales and customer-focused organizations. Cortes has led teams of sales directors, managers, account executives, engineers, and marketing managers to gain market share while increasing profitability. His leadership style and philosophy have consistently inspired teams to over achieve sales targets by focusing on business outcomes that leverage leading-edge technologies, marketing strategy and tactical sales execution. Cortes focuses on creating an environment of empowerment with accountability. Before joining HP, Cortes served as a sales vice president with Siemens Enterprise Communication. Prior to that he served in sales leadership roles at Meru Networks, Avaya, Tellium and Cisco. Cortes spent more than 12 years at AT&T Paradyne organization where he served in a number of marketing, sales and partner sales roles.
Thomas DelVecchioFounder, Enterprise Technology Research Group
Thomas DelVecchio is the Founder and Director of Enterprise Technology Research (ETR) –the next‐gen technology market research firm that powers ETR&D and ETRiQ. DelVecchio has spent the last decade in the enterprise technology space between both research and investment. Over the last five years, he organically built a highly-engaged enterprise CIO community and survey respondent sample in excess of 3,500 globally. ETR’s revolutionary research methodology is Thomas’ brainchild and he’s attributed with coining the term “Net spending intentions”. ETR has helped to redefine the goal and use of survey work in the institutional investment community. Prior to ETR&D and ETRiQ, DelVecchio acted as an Advisor to TheInfoPro (TIP) within institutional research methodology, publication, sales and marketing. He believes that the future of technology will be shaped by the enterprise and this fuels his motivation to support CIOs and other high-level enterprise IT end users. This belief also justifies his reliance on CIOs direct input over all other sources. DelVecchio values primary research over all others and is ever-contrarian.
Robert DeMarzoSVP, Event Content and Strategy, The Channel Company
Riad HasanSenior Vice President, CIO, National Western Life
Riad Hasan is a globally experienced IT executive with 20 years of expertise in driving business change from concept to operational reality. He possesses a unique blend of technology and operations skills and is adept at building strong business to IT alignment, selling solutions, strategic planning, and managing multimillion dollar programs in highly matrixed environments. Hasan has a history of achieving organizational efficiency through process consolidation and outsourcing. He is a Six Sigma certified Black Belt with a passion for process simplification and continuous learning. He has successfully led teams through periods of rapid growth and navigated economic downturns. Prior to joining National Western Life, Hasan rose through the ranks of Genworth where he eventually led new business development and underwriting technology for the company. He spent seven years with GE Capital. Hasan got his start in IT working for solution providers Vanstar and Integrated Systems Consulting Group. He has a master’s degree in management of information technology from the University of Virginia and a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from Lafayette College.
James KennerDirector of IT, TwinStar Credit Union
As Director of IT for TwinStar Credit Union, James Kenner has assembled a team of highly skilled systems support, engineering and development staff from the ground up. Kenner has had the honor of helping restructure the department to better meet the needs of the business and its membership by strategically aligning IT with all levels of the institution from the board and CEO to front line staff. Working as a key member on teams such as business continuity planning, risk management, and security committees, Kenner had the opportunity to influence direction and implement real change. Kenner has served as the chief technology architect for the County of Rosebud, senior project manager of Timbercraft Contracting and spent 5 years as director of operations for the U.S. Marine Corps.
Tony LageraBusiness Manager, Software-defined storage and Hyper-converged solutions, HPE
Lagera has more than 25 years of industry experience with a storage focus over the last 18. He joined Hewlett Packard with the acquisition of LeftHand Networks in 2008 when their software became the basis for HP E’s software-defined storage and hyper-converged strategy. Lagera started with LeftHand Networks in August 2005 and began his career in the telecom industry in the 1980s as a developer and eventual CIO.
Jeanette LeeDirector of Global Field Sales Enablement, Ruckus Wireless
Jeanette Lee is Director of Systems Engineering for the Americas at Ruckus Wireless. She oversees a team of pre-sales engineers dedicated to designing the best Wi-Fi solutions on the planet. An industry veteran, she has spent over 20 years building high-performance networks for customers in the enterprise and service provider industries. She has authored numerous papers and given talks on best practices for practical subjects such as high density, authentication and security, RF fundamentals and troubleshooting. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Carnegie Mellon.
Tony LengManaging Director, Diversified Search
Tony Leng is a Managing Director at Diversified Search and leads the CIO and Technology practices. He also manages the firm’s San Francisco office. Previously, Tony was Managing Partner of Hodge Partners. Tony has conducted senior IT management searches for organizations such as Axalta, Delta Dental, Kaiser Permanente, Dignity Health, Franklin Templeton Investments, Visa, Esurance, Levi Strauss, Blue Shield, TE Connectivity, REI, PG&E, and Polycom. He has also conducted technology searches for companies such as Broadvision, Hypercom, JDA Software, Symmetricom, Backflip Software, SAP and OpenTV. Prior to his executive search experience, Tony was a Board member of three public companies and CEO of a $600 million public IT company. Before that, Tony ran a $1 billion division of a telephone company focused on corporate users and had responsibility for all data services and networking products. While at the telephone company, he was founder and Chairman of its ISP and a board member of its 2 million-subscriber cell phone associated company. Tony specializes in CIO search and is a frequent speaker at CIO conferences. He has written numerous papers on technology leadership and the challenges facing CIOs today and authors a blog, “Resources for the Modern CIO” (www.tonyleng.com).
Tony has facilitated the Fisher CIO Forum for the past ten years. The Forum is a monthly venue for CIOs to discuss topics of relevance in their daily lives, and has afforded CIOs the opportunity to develop a close network to discuss current challenges in a peer group environment on a confidential basis. Participating companies have included: Delta Dental, Esurance, Dolby, Gap, Levi Strauss, Dignity Health, PG&E, BioRad, Uber, Genentech, CBS Interactive, McKesson, Macys.com, Clorox, Matson, Charlotte Russe, Kaiser Permanente, Williams-Sonoma, Bebe, Raley’s, Restoration Hardware, Cost Plus, Ross Stores, VMWare, Facebook, Schwab, Salesforce.com, GoPro, Safeway, Franklin Templeton, AirBNB, DocuSign, One Kings Lane, Splunk, and Blue Shield among others.
Tony received a Bachelor of Commerce (with honors), University of Cape Town, South Africa and is a Chartered Accountant and CPA.
Lisa MacKenziePartner, Executive Vice President, The Channel Company
Lisa MacKenzie is a seasoned executive with expertise in marketing, sales, product management and operations. Lisa was instrumental in The Channel Company's evolution from providing traditional media to offering a full portfolio of solutions and services. She brings her proven expertise to The Channel Company's extensive events portfolio - helping ensure that our events meet the evolving needs of our customers. Thanks to Lisa's leadership, The Channel Company attracts record audiences and receives high customer satisfaction scores. Lisa also repositioned our consulting, research and education offerings, resulting in increased profitability and new product launches.
Barmak MeftahPresident & CEO, AlienVault
Barmak Meftah is a veteran of the technology industry with over 20 years experience in building and leading great teams. Meftah has been CEO and President of AlienVault since late 2011. Previously Meftah was VP of the Enterprise Security Products division at HP, after HP’s acquisition of Fortify Software in 2010. At Fortify, Meftah was Chief Products Officer from inception until its acquisition by HP. Prior to Fortify, Meftah held senior management positions in engineering, product management, and management consulting for industry leading companies, including Oracle, Price Waterhouse LLC and Wells Fargo.
Alan NafzigerVice President of IT, Impact Telecom
As VP of IT for Impact Telecom, Alan Nafziger is responsible for setting strategic direction for corporate infrastructure and business applications. He also manages application development, database, production and infrastructure teams. Nafziger was also accountable for integrating systems and consolidating data centers during Impact Telecom’s merger with TNCI where he served as IT director. He possesses broad IT experience in telecommunications (VoIP and TDM), health insurance, software development, higher education administrative systems, international telecommunications and systems integration. Nafziger has also served as IT director for Globalinx and TMC Communications. He has also served as director of application development for TMC and director of emerging technology for RSL Communications. Nafziger graduated from Goshen College with a bachelor’s degree in math and physics.
Duy NguyenResearch Director, Gartner
Duy Nguyen covers strategies and methods for aspects of ERP application planning, implementation and program management, including solution engineering, architecture, system development life cycle (SDLC), system engineering, access security and software acquisition strategies.
Before joining Gartner, Mr. Nguyen was an accomplished solution architect with diversified experience in providing technical solutions to both commercial and public-sector clients across the full ERP SDLC and information technology (IT). He has extensive expertise in bringing a wealth of industry-leading tools and technologies, such as ERP business application architecture and identity management (IdM) technology in operation, and a solid background in SAP infrastructure management and application security.
Niel NickolaisenChief Technology Officer, OC Tanner
Niel Nickolaisen is the chief technology officer at OC Tanner â€“ the leading provider of innovative cloud-based software, awards, education, and recognition solutions. He has held various IT and operations leadership roles and has a track record and reputation for improving alignment, decision-making and IT's deliver and credibility. Niel has spent his career finding rapid, pragmatic ways to improve processes, teams, and results. He is passionate about transforming IT and leadership and speaks about, writes about and trains others how to do this. Niel is the author of "The Agile Culture" (Addison Wesley, 2014) and "Stand Back and Deliver" (Addison Wesley, 2009). He holds an MS in Engineering from MIT and an MBA and BS in Physics from Utah State University.
Olin OlsonSales Engineering Manager, Aruba Networks, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company
Olin Olson has more than 20 years in the networking industry and has witnessed the mobility transformation first hand as an engineer, consultant and now engineering manager. With almost nine years at Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company, Olson has focused on the mobile transformation and worked to evangelize the benefits of a truly unwired workforce.
Brian ReedResearch Director, Gartner
Brian Reed is Research Director for Data Loss Prevention (DLP), which includes endpoint DLP, network DLP, and data discovery and classification.
Before joining Gartner, Mr. Reed worked in a variety of product management and business development roles. Most recently, he worked at Lastline, where he was responsible for technical alliances and partnerships. Prior to Lastline, he was part of the Advanced Malware team at Sourcefire, which was acquired by Cisco Systems.
Daron RobertsFounding Director, Center for Sports Leadership & Innovation, University of Texas
Daron K. Roberts (@CoachDKR) is the founding director of the Center for Sports Leadership & Innovation at the University of Texas. He spent seven years as an NFL and college football coach after graduating from Harvard Law School. He has been featured in ESPN the Magazine, Bloomberg Businessweek and Sports Illustrated. As a lecturer at The University of Texas, Roberts focuses on teaching leadership to nearly 300 students each year. His courses: “Leadership Strategy in Sports,” “Disruptive Innovation in Sports,” “Weaponry of Words” and “A Game Plan for Winning at Life,” are highly sought after.
In the fall, before his third year at Harvard Law School, Roberts decided to pursue a career in football coaching and wrote letters to college and professional football teams. The NFL’s Kansas City Chiefs offered Roberts a training camp internship. He leveraged that unpaid position into an assistant coaching position. From Kansas City, Roberts went on to coach with the Detroit Lions, West Virginia Mountaineers and Cleveland Browns.
Daron's first book, Call an Audible: Let My Pivot from Harvard Law to NFL Coach Inspire Your Transition, will be released in January of 2017. Visit his website at daronkroberts.com.
Marty SandersSVP, Americas Sales, HPE SimpliVity
As the Vice President of the Americas, Marty is responsible for overseeing all sales and go-to-market activities in both North and South America.
Prior to HPE SimpliVity, Marty was the Vice President at EMC where major responsibilities included managing North American sales and support, maintaining executive relationships with EMC’s largest global accounts, and delivering exceptional customer loyalty skills. He was also the CEO for both Chet Holmes International and Going Green Solar where he led the organizations to impressive revenue growth.
Marty holds a Bachelor of Science in Commerce and Engineering from Drexel University.
John SansonAlliance Business Manager, Hortonworks, HPE
John Sanson has been with HPE for six years, focused on big data analytics and data storage solutions. He currently serves as the Hortonworks alliance manager and Hadoop sales SME for the Americas. Sanson specializes in HPE big data and data center storage platforms.
Joe SykoraVP Channel Sales, North America, Fortinet
Joe Sykora is the Vice President of Americas Channels and Enhanced Technologies for Fortinet, Inc. (FTNT), and is responsible for overseeing a channel organization of over 7,400 Americas partners as well as Fortinet's channel sales strategy. Joe and his team work closely with Fortinet’s partners and their mid-enterprise customers to protect themselves from the ever-evolving threat landscape. Joe has over 30 years in IT security, in both the manufacturing sector and as a solution provider, helping customers focus on business priorities while keeping their networks secure.
Lynden TennisonSVP & CIO, Union Pacific
Lynden Tennison was named senior vice president and chief information officer of Union Pacific Corporation in February 2005. In his position, Tennison is responsible for organizing and managing the development, implementation and operation of Union Pacific Railroad’s information and telecommunications technologies.
Before his promotion, Tennison was vice president of Information Technologies and chief technology officer for Union Pacific Railroad. Tennison was named to that position in 2001 and had responsibility for the application systems and architectures for the entire company. From 1998 through 2001, Tennison was president and chief executive officer of Nexterna, a technology subsidiary of Union Pacific. Nexterna develops applications and hardware solutions for the mobile asset marketplace.
Prior to joining Union Pacific in 1992, Lynden spent five years with American Airlines’ SABRE division and was responsible for the Knowledge Systems organization. From 1979 through 1987, Lynden worked on various management and technical capacities for AT&T and Southwestern Bell Telephone.
Brian WatsonCo-Head, CIO Networks, Metis Strategy, Author, Confessions of a Successful CIO
Brian P. Watson is an author, speaker and contributor to a wide array of business/technology outlets focused on IT leadership and the CIO role. He currently serves as Co-Head, CIO Networks at Metis Strategy, a business and technology strategy consulting firm.
Watson is the author of Confessions of a Successful CIO: How the Best CIOs Tackle Their Toughest Business Challenges (Wiley, March 2014), and writes profiles of elite IT leaders for CIO.com.
Previously, he served as Editor in Chief of CIO Insight. Brian has also contributed analysis and reporting to various IT leadership publications, and has delivered keynotes and moderated panels at various CIO-themed conferences.
Outside of his writing, speaking and IT leadership analysis activities, Brian has also served as Director of Business Outreach for Workforce Opportunity Services, a 501c3 nonprofit that trains talented military veterans and young adults for careers in the private sector. More recently, he was Executive Director at iRise, where he oversaw thought leadership events and programs for IT executives.
Brian earned a Bachelor’s degree from Bucknell University and a Master’s degree from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. He lives in Fairfield County, CT, with his wife and son.