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Techweek Chicago is a weeklong festival celebrating the innovation ecosystem in the Windy City, with 7 days of exciting tech-related events culminating in a 3 day conference and expo.



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Stay ahead of the curve in rapidly evolving web languages, get your hands on newest tech toys and keep your edge in the hiring arena: the Dev Summit has it all.



Jonathan Abon

Jonathan Abon is the Sr. Director of Advanced Analytics at Saggezza. He brings over 18 years of experience working in high technology hardware/software firms and as a business-owner/entrepreneur. He leads the analytics product business unit for Saggezza to enable data-driven enterprises to increase their productivity. His underlying philosophy is to help enterprises increase the quality and speed of decision-making by making analytics more efficient to implement, operationalize, and execute.

Aurimas Adomavicius

Aurimas is a founding partner of Devbridge Group LLC, a Chicago-based technology consulting firm that specializes in enterprise solutions, UX design, custom software development, cloud services, and enterprise mobility. Since 2010, he has served as the company’s President focusing on strategic leadership, business development, and advocacy of blending the design and engineering practices. Since its founding, Devbridge Group has grown to an international company with close to 100 employees servicing mid-market and Fortune companies across the globe.

Chad Albrecht

For the last 20 years, Chad has been a successful executive, consultant, developer, coach and trainer. Working with dynamic organizations around the world in diverse industries has grown Chad into a strong believer in Agile ALM techniques and the Kaizen corporate culture. Currently, he “practices what he preaches” as the President and CEO of Centare with offices in Milwaukee, Madison and Chicago.

Tim Breslin

Tim Breslin is SVP of Product & Technology at The Onion. Tim lead The Onion to its most recent successful launch of the new satirical website, Tim and colleague, Chris, will discuss how to create an evolvable product, achieving large-scale results with small-scale resources, as well as general tech topics.

Alex Brown

As CEO of 10th Magnitude, the Chicago-based, Microsoft Azure-specialized cloud software and services firm he founded in 2010, Alex spends his days converting his clients to cloud tech so they can unleash corporate innovation. Alex currently sits on Microsoft’s exclusive “Born In The Cloud” advisory board, and 10th Magnitude is an Azure Circle Partner recognized as one of the nation’s leading firms for Azure development and migration.

Fred Cate

Fred Cate is a Distinguished Professor and director of the IU Center for Applied Cybersecurity Research and managing director of the IU Center for Law, Ethics, and Applied Research in Health Information. A member of Microsoft’s Trustworthy Computing Academic Advisory Board, Intel’s Privacy and Security External Advisory Board, the US Department of Homeland Security Data Privacy and Integrity Committee Cybersecurity Subcommittee, the OECD Panel of Experts on Health Information Infrastructure, the Board of Directors of The Privacy Projects, and more.

Will Cole

Will Cole is the Product Manager for Careers 2.0: the hiring platform that connects employers to the developers on Stack Overflow. Will spends much of his time working with developers on Stack Overflow to understand how they participate in the recruiting process, and building products that allow employers to reach developers in the most respectful and efficient way.

Yael Cosset

Yael provides strategic leadership on all aspects of technology, infrastructure and product offerings. As Global Chief Information Officer, Cosset provides leadership focused on building innovative, world class products and solutions including an expanded portfolio in the digital personalization area. Cosset also serves as Chief Executive Officer of KSS Retail, a global enterprise software provider of price modeling and optimization solutions for retailers worldwide.

Don Costello

Don Costello is the Web Product Manager for Uponor North America, a worldwide provider of radiant heating and cooling, plumbing and fire sprinkler systems for the residential and commercial building markets. With 15 years of experience in B2B and B2C web-based marketing strategies, Costello proficiently manages the day-to-day operations of the company’s multiple web platforms, including two consumer-based websites, two professional-based websites, key account portals and various microsites.

Mark Cravotta

Mark is responsible for global sales and service execution for SingleHop. He brings over 15 years of web hosting industry and IT experience to the SingleHop team and has worked in a broad spectrum of capacities. Cravotta has extensive experience working in sales, engineering, IT systems architecture, security, quality assurance, and business development. Mark holds a Master’s in Business Administration in Finance from Charleston Southern University and a Bachelor’s of Science in Mechanical Engineering Management from West Point.

Andrew Cronk

Andrew is an experienced engineer and entrepreneur that generates insight and efficiency through data. He learned the power of data-driven leadership as an engineer at UPS and Motorola, leveraging data to enable manufacturing decisions at the crowdfunding company he founded. This revealed the unique challenges of storing and analyzing massive streams of time series data from realtime sensors, and they leveraged this insight in architecting TempoDB’s time series database service.

Tiffany Farriss

Tiffany Farriss is the President of Chicago-based, which she has bootstrapped along with CEO George DeMet into an influential and still growing Web design and development firm. For Palantir, Tiffany specializes in providing project leadership and strategy through consultation, project planning and training. Tiffany has over 16 years of experience working with a wide variety of clients in universities, cultural institutions and corporate organizations. An open source enthusiast, she serves as the Treasurer of the Drupal Association.

David Fisher

David Fisher serves as chief executive officer of Enova International, the global online lender which provides reliable, real-time financial options for everyday, hard-working people facing short-term cash demands. Based in Chicago, Enova is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Cash America International, Inc. (NYSE: CSH). Prior to joining Enova in January 2013, Fisher served as the chief executive officer and member of the Board of Directors of optionsXpress Holdings, Inc. from October 2007 through March 2012.

Ted Gaty

Ted Gaty serves as the Senior Vice President of Product Development at Paylocity. In this position, Ted oversees all aspects of the development of Paylocity’s cloud-based HR and Payroll solutions. Ted’s strategic agenda includes accelerating product speed to market, scaling the organization to significantly expand product development capabilities, continuing a fundamental shift to a mobile-first development paradigm, and expanding the set of actionable analytics provided to clients. Ted’s experience in the industry spans over 18 years.

Steve Gutterman

Steve Gutterman is the President of GeoPoll, a mobile surveying platform revolutionizing the way data is collected. For 15 years, Gutterman has built companies that use technological innovation to propel growth. From 2005 – 2011, Gutterman was president & managing director of MBH Enterprises, a holding company that acquires controlling interest in financial service & B2B companies. Prior to MBH, Gutterman served as EVP and COO of E*TRADE Bank, a $35 billion federally regulated thrift institution.

Melissa Harris

Melissa Harris joined The Chicago Tribune as a business columnist in 2009 after nearly five years as an award-winning metro reporter at The Baltimore Sun. She is a graduate of Northwestern and Johns Hopkins universities (B.S., Journalism/M.A., Government), and a two-time finalist for The Livingston Award, honoring outstanding reporting by journalists under the age of 35. She is currently enrolled in the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, where she is working toward an MBA.

Jason Hart

Jason Hart is an ITIL certified Cloud Client Executive with over 14 years of IT sales experience across various market segments. Using a consultative approach, he provides clients definitional, categorical, and strategic expertise around CDW’s cloud portfolio. He serves as a “face-in-the-cloud” where you’ll see him conduct in-market speaking events on emerging market trends and cloud adoption use cases. Jason graduated from Purdue University in Business and Marketing and obtained his MBA from Lake Forest Graduate School of Management.

Alan Hoffman

Alan, like his co-founders, holds a PhD in Physics from MIT. Before Cloudant, he spent 5 years analyzing data from the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider.

John Horn

John joined RacoWireless as president in 2011 after serving as leader at T-Mobile for more than nine years. Since joining RacoWireless, John has led the company to record growth and achievement of multiple awards for accomplishments in M2M. At T-Mobile, John developed and managed indirect distribution for the California Launch – largest launch in wireless history – and launched the M2M Channel. During his last six years at T-Mobile, he focused on developing T-Mobile’s M2M program and go-to market strategy.

Joe Humphries

Joe Humphries is a seasoned recruiter who currently recruits for Stack Exchange, a professional network of more than 100 Q&A sites. The most popular of these sites, Stack Overflow, is a website for software developers that is consistently one of the top 100 trafficked sites on the Internet. With more than 10 years experience in the recruiting profession, Joe not only has a solid understanding of the developer market, but also knows what it takes to hire the right developer.

Adam Justice

Adam Justice is Vice President and General Manager of Grid Connect. He is responsible for developing the vision for the ConnectSense product line, a family of wireless sensors that monitors the things you care about and notifies you when something goes awry. Adam is an expert on the Internet of Things and has spoken on the topic at conferences including’s Dreamforce, one of the largest technology conferences in the world.

Bill King

William P. King, Ph.D. is Chief Technology Officer at the Digital Lab for Manufacturing in Chicago, IL, and the College of Engineering Bliss Professor at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. The Digital Lab for Manufacturing is the nation’s flagship research institute for digital manufacturing. At the University of Illinois, Dr. King leads a research group whose work crosses boundaries between science, technology, and commercialization.

Larry Kiss

After receiving his Master’s in Electrical Engineering at University of Colorado at Boulder, Larry spent a number of years designing Microprocessors for Advanced Micro Devices, and then building mobile devices for Motorola. This experience, helped Larry break off from the traditional corporate job, and pursue a lifelong goal of being an entrepreneur. A few iPhone apps later, SpotHero found Larry, and the rest is history.

Brian Kopp

Brian Kopp joined STATS in 2008 and is currently Senior Vice President of Sports Solutions. In this role, Kopp leads all aspects of new business development including the revolutionary SportVU player tracking technology. SportVU is installed in all 29 NBA venues and has changed the face of basketball analytics. Kopp was named a 2013 Idea Innovator by Sports Business Journal and SportVU has won numerous technology and innovation awards. STATS was recently named #1 Most Innovative Company in Sports by Fast Company.

Jeff Kosseff

Jeff is a privacy and communications attorney in the Washington, D.C. office of Covington & Burling, LLP. He advises organizations on privacy practices and develops Privacy by Design programs. He clerked for Judge Milan D. Smith, Jr. of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and Judge Leonie M. Brinkema of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eastern District of Virginia. Prior, he was a technology and political journalist for The Oregonian and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and recipient of the George Polk Award for national reporting.

Christopher Krohn President and Chief Marketing Officer Christopher Krohn oversees the growth and development of the nation’s largest restaurant deals site. A veteran e-commerce leader, Krohn has extensive experience scaling businesses and cultivating strong consumer-facing brands and teams. Krohn marries his marketing skills with a background in information technology and strategy, and has done consulting work for Bain & Company, Hewitt Associates and Accenture.

Amanda Lannert

Amanda Lannert is the Chief Executive Officer of The Jellyvision Lab and has been a key figure in driving the company’s direction since its founding in 2001. Her focus at The Jellyvision Lab is on furthering the company’s digital strategy, improving processes to better scale operations, and client acquisition to continue fueling the company’s growth.

Trevor Olson

Trevor is the President & CEO of Aware Web Solutions, an award winning, full-service consultancy specializing in web solutions that best integrate Sitecore with a wide range of business systems, applications and tools. Aware puts clients at the center of everything they do, enabling organizations to truly own their web through Sitecore’s powerful platform. Olson’s diverse background includes market research, digital marketing, user experience design and a stint at one of the world’s largest public relations firms.

Morgan Page

Morgan Page (born May 31, 1981) is an American progressive house and electro house DJ from Los Angeles, California. His tracks include “The Longest Road”, “Fight for You” and “In the Air”. Page has received two Grammy Award nominations; a personal nomination for best remix with Nadia Ali and in 2009 his song was nominated for best remix (The Longest Road – Deadmau5 Remix). Page is signed to Nettwerk Records worldwide.

Darrell Pratt

Darrell Pratt is the architecture leader for the global buy platform at The Nielsen Company. As the architecture leader, Darrell leads a global team of solutions architects who design and lead development of systems including mobile, web, services, BI and data warehouses. Currently Darrell is working on designing a new OLAP solution using Ext JS, Couchbase and host of other technologies for the Nielsen client platform.

Gary Robinson

Gary Robinson is a Program Director in IBM’s Big Data organization based in Silicon Valley, California. During his 25 years with IBM in the UK and USA, Gary has worked on many emerging technologies in the Information Management arena, including: Decision Support Systems, Multidimensional Analysis technologies, Data Warehouse, Information Integration, RFID and XML. He specializes in bringing new technologies to market & holds 10 technical patents in relational, multidimensional and RFID related technologies.

Kurt Rohde

Kurt W. Rohde is a partner with McDonnell Boehnen Hulbert & Berghoff LLP. Mr. Rohde focuses on patent litigation, with a special emphasis on ANDA litigation. He has experience in pre-filing investigations, fact and expert discovery, eDiscovery management, dispositive motions, trial, and appeals. Mr. Rohde’s practice also includes freedom-to-operate studies, patent validity analyses, opinion preparation, and patent preparation and prosecution.

Bradley Serot

Bradley Serot is currently a Senior Vice President, joining the firm in 2000. Mr. Serot is one of CBRE’s most prominent tenant representation brokers, having been involved in over 6,000,000 square feet of transactions valued at more than $5 billion. Through his perseverance and leadership, he is largely responsible for establishing the firm’s dominant tenant representation market share in downtown Chicago. Throughout his career, Mr. Serot has been retained by the top digital media and technology companies in Chicago.

Chris Sinchock

Chris Sinchock is a Senior Developer at The Onion. Chris lead The Onion to its most recent successful launch of the new satirical website, Chris and colleague, Tim, will discuss how to create an evolvable product, achieving large-scale results with small-scale resources, as well as general tech topics.

Kevin Steele

Kevin is responsible for all technology areas, including IT architecture, product development, quality assurance, systems engineering and enterprise services, as well as providing technology direction to the organization. Kevin has over 20 years of experience as a distinguished IT leader with a proven track record of adding value to multiple industries. Prior to, Kevin was Director of Internet Marketing Technology at Allstate Insurance where he was responsible for the platform, enabling business growth and customer value via the website.

Craig Ulliott

Craig Ulliott is a British-born serial technologist and entrepreneur currently serving as VP of Product and CTO at Belly. Craig’s list of services and companies he’s built or founded include Card Creator, Ohaso Limited, Where I’ve Been, SocialKaty Inc, and now Belly. Craig also serves as the CTO of Chicago Ideas Week, is an advisor at several Chicago area startups, and is a mentor at 1871.

Maurice White

Maurice is the Director of Enterprise Mobility at Seneca Global. Prior to joining, he was a Senior Enterprise Mobility Architect & Developer for BlackBerry worldwide, consulting and directing Fortune 500 companies, government entities & healthcare facilities through the design & development of enterprise mobility solutions for the BlackBerry platform. Prior to that, he acted as a Technical Lead for a Chicago based mobile development firm, applying his close to 15 years of experience in delivering solutions on multiple mobile platforms.

Ian Whiting

Ian Whiting is the Director of Interactive Services at Saggezza. He brings over 10 years of experience working in the interactive design and development space. He leads a team of interactive designers, business analysts and developers who focus on user experience optimization, interactive design, and lean user-driven development. He oversees the building of custom web applications and mobility solutions, yielding business and process transformation for Saggezza enterprise clients.


The links between a well-educated population and a productive workforce have never been greater. Speakers and exhibitors in the Edu & Work Summit empower us in new and exciting ways.



Alan Anderson

Before he began his role as the founding executive director in 2010, he led a new citywide education and advocacy process for CPS. Serving as the acting chief school design officer in the Chief Administrative Office, Alan was determined to improve the quality of education available to students & decided to mobilize parents & community leaders to develop solutions to fix failing schools. At Year Up, he built a foundation to allow students the opportunity to apply the skills learned in the classroom to the workforce.

Rona Borre

Since founding Instant Technology in 2001, Rona has been instrumental in growing the firm to the multi-million-dollar, woman-owned enterprise it is today. As a thought leader, Rona recognized that the future of IT staffing lied in providing comprehensive talent solutions in order to help her clients build leading-edge IT workforces. As a result, Instant Technology expanded their offerings to include strategic consultations regarding talent management, training, niche staffing initiatives in DevOps and beyond.

John Carpenter

John is a reporter for the Chicago Tribune’s Blue Sky Innovation. A veteran, award-winning Chicago journalist, covering everything from business new to education to transportation to politics to crime – often tackling the last two subjects at the same time! Before joining the Tribune last year, he launched the Homicide Watch Chicago website for the Chicago Sun-Times, which recently won a Peter Lisagor Award from the Chicago Headline Club. A native New Englander and graduate of Boston College, as well as Carlow University in Pittsburgh.

Aneesh Chopra

Aneesh Chopra was the first CTO of the United States government. He is a graduate of Johns Hopkins & the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. Aneesh has recently released his new book INNOVATIVE STATE: How New Technologies Can Transform Government. INNOVATIVE STATE synthesizes his experience as the first CTO and interviews tech leaders and policy experts to create a playbook for how government can tackle our most challenging problems.

Benjamin Dyett

Changing the future of work, Benjamin, along with some partners, created Grind. Grind is the antidote to everything you knew about work. Dedicated to taking all of the frustrations of the old work experience and pulverizing them to a dust so fine it actually oils the wheels of the machine. Benjamin has founded, funded, operated and advised successful start-ups. He has experience in real estate and corporate law, represented financial institutions and prominent businesspeople, owned his own consulting firm, always at the epicenter of where business and imagination meet.

Andrew Geant

Andrew is cofounder and CEO of WyzAnt, the leading marketplace for in-person and online tutoring with nearly two million registered users. WyzAnt is headquartered in Chicago where it currently has 75 employees. Drew is passionate about making tutoring more affordable and accessible. As a former tutor, he’s also dedicated to helping tutors reach more students, manage their business and maximize their impact on learning. He grew up in Maine and in his spare time enjoys golfing, skiing, fishing and trying new restaurants in town.

Tom Gimbel

Tom Gimbel is president and CEO of LaSalle Network, a Chicago-based staffing firm, specializing in technology. Since inception in 1998, LaSalle has won nearly 30 culture-based and revenue-based awards, including National Best and Brightest Companies to Work For, Inc. 500/5000 (2007-2013), Staffing Industry Analysts’ Best Staffing Firms to Work For (2011-2013) and Fastest-Growing Staffing Firms (2012-2013). In an industry categorized by high turnover, LaSalle has among the highest retention rates with nearly 90%.

Dale Hersowitz

Fueled by his entrepreneurial spirit and driven by a passion to revolutionize the shared space category, Dale Hersowitz co-founded WUN Systems becoming the leading provider of turn-key cloud-based products for the shared space community. Significant changes in where, when and how people work inspired Hersowitz to co-found HappyDesk featuring the HappyDesk Marketplace an on-line peer-to peer marketplace and HappyDesk Apps the only software of its kind transforming the way providers offer and seekers access space.

Christopher Klundt

Chris is Founder and President of StudyBlue, a fast-growing learning app used by nearly five million students. While studying computer science and biomedical engineering at UW-Madison, Chris was frustrated with the lack of innovative technology specifically for students and determined to find a solution. He went to work by creating a collaborative, personalized learning app that reaches beyond the limits of pen and paper and revolutionizes the studying experience for students across the globe.

Martin Moran

Martin Moran is the Director of Education Innovation at the Parker School and a Google Certified Teacher. He has over 12 years experience in schools and was recently named an NAIS “Teacher of the Future” for his use of technology and innovation in the classroom. Martin is also a technology in education consultant for Bennett Day School, an independent JK-8 independent school. He has presented at SxSWEDU, the National Conference for the Social Studies, and the Progressive Education Network Conference.

Ryan O’Connell

Ryan O’Connell is the Vice President at Influence & Co. Influence & Co helps entrepreneurs, consultants, business and universities establish themselves as thought leaders within their industry by getting them published online. Ryan has started small businesses, worked in real estate, radio, marketing and sports before he was hired on to the leadership team at Influence & Co. He has a proven experience, a track record of success, as well a unique background and passion to work with business owners, brands and athletes.

Ashish Rangekar

Ashish Rangnekar is the CEO and Co-Founder of BenchPrep, an educational technology startup based in Chicago. At BenchPrep, Ashish designed the first testing and assessment engine for iOS in 2008 and led the product development for the first cross-platform exam prep app. He has helped several education publishing companies and advised their executive teams on mobile distribution strategies.

Adam Robinson

Adam co-founded Hireology with the mission to help growing companies make better hiring decisions through data and better technology. Previously, Adamwas the co-founder and CEO of illuma, a leader in high-volume recruitment outsourcing solutions, and the creator of the Ionix Hiring System, a full suite of interview and assessment tools. Adam is passionate about entrepreneurship, donating time to a number of organizations that support the entrepreneurial cause.

Mike Sajor

Mike Sajor joined Apollo Group in April 2012 to create a strong, integrated technology, information technology and innovation organization that can drive world class operational effectiveness and support for Apollo Group’s multiple strategic initiatives and business units. He works to create the platforms and systems for Apollo Group to drive a global transformation in education.

Mike Shannon

Mike Shannon co-founded as a senior in college (Illinois State U.). Packback provides students with a range of services to save money on textbooks, most notably the first ever “pay per use” digital textbook rental model. Mike & team gained national exposure in March of 2014 by presenting Packback on ABC’s “Shark Tank” and reaching a deal with Mark Cuban.

Todd Thibodeaux

Todd Thibodeaux is the president and chief executive officer of CompTIA, the leading trade association representing the business interests of the global information technology (IT) industry. He is responsible for leading strategy, development and growth efforts for the association. Before joining CompTIA in July 2008, Thibodeaux spent more than 17 years with the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), where he served in a wide range of roles culminating as its senior vice president of industry relations.

Scott Wyatt

Scott Wyatt is Managing Partner of NBBJ — one of the world’s largest architecture firms — where he oversees the talents, accomplishments and business strategies of the firm’s ten offices. As an architect and leader of NBBJ’s corporate office design practice, Scott also oversees the creation of HQ’s for companies like Amazon, Google, Samsung, Boeing, Tencent, Alipay and Microsoft. Scott’s work has been featured in the WSJ, Wired, Businessweek, Fast Company, Inc., Bloomberg TV, Fox Business, CNBC and NPR.


Elevating women in dialogue, action and business.



Sabeen Ali

Sabeen Ali is the Co-Founder and CEO of AngelHack and it’s sister non-profit Code for a Cause, the world’s largest developer ecosystem. In a past life, Sabeen has been a consult for leadership and organizational development with Kaiser Permanente, Yahoo!, Peet’s Coffee, and Cisco. She founded her own training and development company, Team Building ROI, in the Bay Area in 2011 which she sold to begin AngelHack. She’s an advocate for women in tech and loves being a great mommy to her 2 daughters, Noor and Laila.

Jayna Cooke

CEO and Partner at EVENTup, Jayna is distinguished as being one of the successful sales and business development professionals in technology startups over the past decade. As Vice President of Business Development at Groupon, Jayna was integral in executing the company’s early sales and partnership strategies helping launch various sales strategies and successfully closed the two largest deals to date with national retailers Gap and Nordstrom. She’s responsible for creating 25% of entire company revenue in 2009, and 10% of Gross Revenue for 2010.

Linda Darragh

Beyond teaching and leading the KIEI, Linda is an active member of the Chicago entrepreneurial community. She has been a long-time board member of the Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center and ACCION Chicago. She is also a member of Illinois Task Force on Social Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Enterprise and a board member for TiE Midwest. Linda organized Springboard: Mid-West, a nationally recognized investor forum for women entrepreneurs, in 2001 and 2003 raising more than $85 million for participants.

Sarah Doherty

Sarah is Co-Founder & CTO of TeleHealthNow, an angel-backed venture that has created the world’s first tele-robotic healthcare platform. The platform enables a virtual pool of providers to examine patients anywhere in the world in real-time. It also brings down the cost of care delivery by capitalizing on efficiency gains from pairing remote, robotic manipulation of medical tools with telepresence technology. The first application of TeleHealthNow’s platform is in delivering remotely-executed heart ultrasound.

Tiffany Farriss

Tiffany is the President of Chicago-based, which she has bootstrapped along with CEO George DeMet into an influential and still growing Web design and development firm. Tiffany specializes in providing project leadership and strategy through consultation, project planning and training. Tiffany has over 16 years of experience working with a wide variety of clients in universities, cultural institutions and corporate organizations. An open source enthusiast, she serves as the Treasurer of the Drupal Association.

Fred Hoch

Fred is the CEO of the Illinois Technology Association. Under his leadership, ITA is relentless in championing the growth of technology and its applications, from start-up companies to industry leaders, leveraging the transformative nature of technology to revolutionize industries. Fostering collaboration and peer advise from leaders from the technology industry, ITA uniquely integrates powerful and experienced resources to power the growth of Illinois technology. He is also the founder of Chicago’s TechNexus Venture Collaborative.

Melinda Kramer

Melinda is CEO of KloudVentures LLC, a think tank and consultancy focused on new ideas and solving problems in the world at large. For 11 years prior, Melinda was CTO at Grosvenor Capital Management, a large global alternative investments firm. Melinda has spent her career in rapidly changing worlds – technology and financial services. She has held technology leadership roles at several firms including Grosvenor, Access Data Corporation, Goldman Sachs & Co, David Bruce & Co. and Leveraged Technology, Inc.

Amanda Lannert

Amanda is the Chief Executive Officer of The Jellyvision Lab. Her focus is on furthering the company’s digital strategy, improving processes to better scale operations, and client acquisition to continue fueling the company’s growth. The Jellyvision Lab has doubled its revenue three out of the last four years and has grown to serve almost 100, mostly Fortune 1000 clients with interactive communication solutions for desktop, mobile, and emerging platforms via the company’s digital agency work and ALEX, the Jellyvision Benefits Counselor.

Avery McCall

Avery has been involved with human rights causes since age 12 when she read “Half the Sky” and became one of 14 United Nations Girl Up teen ambassadors. She has spoken on stage at the UN, in DC, San Francisco and Chicago on women and girls’ rights while raising nearly $40,000 for the UN. She has worked with Congolese refugees as well as an array of organizations ranging from Girl Rising to ArtWorks Projects and has been featured in several publications including the Half the Sky website.

Suzanne Muchin

Before launching Mind + Matter Studio, Suzanne was a founding Partner and Lead Strategist of Frequency540, a strategic communications agency that acquired the company she founded, ROI Ventures (Return on Inspiration)— a strategy firm that packaged social impact for the marketplace. Began her career at Teach For America, where she served for three years as the Vice President of National Programs after having been a TFA Charter Corps Member in the South Bronx. Inducted into the Chicago Entrepreneur Hall of Fame in 2012.

Brent Payne

Brent D. Payne is esteemed as one of the top SEOs in the world. Before becoming CEO of Loud Interactive, Brent cut his teeth in online marketing by working closely with well-known brands like, Best Buy, Chicago Tribune and Brent’s industry knowledge is sought after around the world and he has spoken in 6 of the 7 continents, sharing insights on social media strategy, SEO and resolving online reputation issues.

Sue Purvis

Sue Purvis currently serves as the Outreach and Education Advisor in the Office of Innovation Development. In this capacity she is work to expand education and assistance to the innovation and entrepreneurial community. Prior to her current role, she was the first Innovation and Outreach Coordinator in the Greater New York Region as part of a partnership with Cornell University.

Heidi Sullivan

Named as The Hub’s “Individual Influencer of the Year” and one of PRWeek’s 40 Under 40 Rising Stars in 2012, Heidi is Senior Vice President of Digital Content. She leads the company’s digital and broadcast content teams, the global research team for Cision’s media database and the company’s content marketing strategy. Prior to this role she was Vice President of Global Media Research and managed the enhancement and maintenance of Cision’s media database of more than one million media outlets, journalists and influencers.

Sheila Talton

She is a 30-year veteran in the information technology industry, and leads Gray Matter Analytics as CEO. She has successfully built consulting practices as an entrepreneur, inside of EDS and within Cisco Systems. She is an executive with experience building management teams and business solutions, helping technology businesses with their global strategies, and driving channel strategies utilizing numerous technology partners.

Liz Vellojin

Liz is the founder of Argyle Search Partners, a candidate driven recruitment firm dedicated to the high-growth tech movement in Chicago. Liz moved to the city in 2004 to join an early stage start-up and played an integral role in growing the business from a $1.5 million IT recruiting office to a $60 million nationwide division of Addison Group. In 2012, Liz left Addison and started Argyle Search Partners. As an operating partner, she advises on strategic hiring initiatives for incubated and pre-IPO businesses alike.


From adtech, social media and online publishing, the avenues to extended your reach and power your message are growing at staggering speeds.



Rida Khan

Rida founded her company Zee report in 2008 which aimed to provide Fashion Industry news without any subscription costs. Recently assuming her role as a CEO of Fashion TV beginning of 2013; Khan plans on remaining the President of Zee Portal and Zee report, and Chair of the board. She still owns around 80% of the company, recently valued at over 214 million USD. In May of 2014 Rida left Fashion TV to become the President of Style Network. She purchased the rights of Style TV and plans to re-launch in the American Market October 2014.

Kara Kaplan

Kara spent her early career working as an investment associate at Mesirow Financial and at Angel Street Capital. She then worked in Business Development at ShopTalk, a deal focused aggregator and $30M venture backed start-up delivering a direct marketing voice portal. Her more recent experience included managing the business development at SelectDeck, a multi-million dollar direct marketing card pack/deal company that reached 450,000 affluent consumers on a quarterly basis. While at SelectDeck she was responsible for the creation of Giftbar.

Nicole Staple

Nicole graduated from Wellesley College and successfully pursued investment banking on the East Coast before catching the startup bug. With a swift move to San Francisco, she joined the market as a venture capital investor, concentrating on technology. The decision to explore business school led the Princeton, NJ native to Kellogg School of Management, where she continued to develop her passion for technology (and skills as a spinning instructor extraordinaire).

Rachel Schostack

After years of working in New York fashion industry and studying Fashion Merchandising & Marketing at the Fashion Institute of Technology, Rachel’s career path took her to Chicago where she worked as a Style Specialist at DNA 2050. Rachel returned to her native Detroit as a Design Associate & Director of Media for Denise Ilitch Designs. In 2013 she founded, marrying her knowledge of fashion retail, merchandising, e-commerce and creative approach toward digital strategy.


Fluidity, fierceness and embracing the faces (or often facelessness) of financial markets and the modern money exchange.



Scott Belous

Scott is responsible for the development of America Express OPEN’s new products and features, including new Card products, mobile applications, data platforms, digital marketing solutions, and digital product features. Scott has overseen the refresh of OPEN’s core products, including Business Gold, Plum, and Simply Cash, as well as rolled out the new ReceiptMatch application that allows small businesses to capture, catalogue, and file their receipts within seconds, from anywhere.

James Janega

At Blue Sky Innovation, James covers innovation, new ventures, and best practices for large firms to create new value in an evolving marketplace. His 15 years at the Tribune span cultural shifts in the news business, foreign coverage, relationships to readers and adopting social media in a storied newsroom. In his previous role as Trib Nation Manager, he helped open pathways between the newsroom and the communities it covers.

Kristi Ross

President of tastytrade, Kristi has been in and around the trading business for more than 20 years. Previously CFO of online brokerage thinkorswim. Prior to that Kristi was CFO of Automated Trading Desk Specialists (formerly CSG), and CFO of Chicago Securities Group (CSG), a stock specialist on the Chicago Stock Exchange (CHX). Kristi started her career in public accounting, specializing in financial services industry clientele including individual traders; prop, market makers, specialists, discount brokerage and advisory firms.

Nicole Sherrod

Nicole is responsible for driving product development and business growth initiatives for the active trader segment of the business. Prior to joining TD Ameritrade, she was director of active trading at E*TRADE Financial. There she focused on driving growth in the futures and options business and was responsible for the firm’s active trader sales division. Prior to that, Sherrod was vice president of sales and marketing at Wall Street Access. In 2008 she joined the thinkorswim Group, which was eventually acquired by TD Ameritrade.


From adtech, social media and online publishing, the avenues to extended your reach and power your message are growing at staggering speeds.



James Aitken

James Aitken, is Founder and CEO of The Exchange Lab. In every media endeavour that he undertakes, James anticipates market needs and gathers teams around him to build vibrant, best-of-breed business that have a deep understanding of both marketing and technology at their core. James has been at the forefront of some of the most significant developments in digital advertising that have occurred over the past 15 years, including being an important player in the start-up and 1999 IPO of Seattle-based Avenue A Media.

Andrew Caravella

Andrew Caravella is vice president of marketing at Sprout Social, a leading social media management and engagement platform for business. He leads a rock star team that creates and delivers relevant, engaging content and conversations through multiple forms of media and technology. Andrew believes the heart of social media hinges on exceptional experiences and meaningful connections, and uses those principles to guide dedicated acquisition, brand visibility and customer growth efforts at Sprout.

Robert Channick

Robert Channick’s media career span has spanned over three decades, working as a freelance writer, account executive, broadcast consultant and radio station manager. Robert began freelancing for the Chicago Tribune in 2002, covering a wide range of subjects for Metro and Business. In 2011, Robert joined the Tribune staff as a business reporter, coalescing his experience to focus on Chicago’s lively and fascinating media beat.

Laurie Davis

An expert in cyber courtship, Laurie Davis is as passionate about technology as she is relationships. She is the founder of eFlirt Expert, an online dating consultancy that has helped thousands of singles navigate the intersection of dating and technology. She’s also the author of the best-selling book, Love @ First Click: The Ultimate Guide to Online Dating. Her advice has been featured in 500+ international media outlets including The New York Times, Good Morning America, Forbes and Elle. She’s married to her tweetheart who she met on Twitter.

Shannon Denton

As the CEO of Razorfish’s North American operations, Shannon oversees client teams and offices in New York, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Chicago, Austin, Portland, Seattle and San Francisco. Previously, Shannon was the leader of the Central region, managing client teams and offices across Chicago, Atlanta and Austin. Shannon’s other roles at Razorfish include executive leadership for several global practice groups including Emerging Experiences and Omnichannel Commerce.

Molly Garris

Molly is a Digital Strategy Director for Leo Burnett and Arc Worldwide. Molly has been instrumental in activating successful mobile marketing campaigns for Coca-Cola, Miller, Coors, Whirlpool, P&G, Kellogg’s, and Purina. Molly spends much of her personal time working with local universities, hosting lectures focused on mobile and digital strategy. She is also co-authoring a book to be used in integrated marketing college classrooms. Her accomplishments were noted in Advertising Age as one of the 2011 Women to Watch.

John Hall

John Hall is the the co-founder and CEO of Influence & Co ( Influence & Co. helps companies position key individuals as industry influencers and thought leaders, with a focus on creating high-quality content, coming from its clients, that reaches their target audience online. Their clients range from fast-growing companies on the Inc. 5000 to established Fortune 500. John also has a weekly column at Forbes, and has contributed to sites like Business Insider, Inc., and The Washington Post, and many other reputable publications.

Steve Hannah

Steve Hannah is the Chief Executive Officer at The Onion, an American digital media company and news satire organization. It runs an entertainment website featuring satirical articles reporting on international, national, and local news in addition to a non-satirical entertainment section known as The A.V. Club, and a creative services division called Onion Labs.

Colin Hodge

Colin Hodge co-founded Bang With Friends, now known as DOWN, in January 2013 and has served as CEO since its conception. Colin holds a Bachelor of Science from Cornell University in Computer Science. Colin and DOWN have excited and angered crowds at SXSW, Business Insider’s STARTUP Conference, Glimpse Social Media Conference, and the Colbert Report.

Justyn Howard

Justyn is the founder and CEO of Sprout Social. Founded in 2010, Sprout Social provides innovative tools that help businesses more effectively manage their social media and social care efforts. A technologist at heart, Justyn is extremely passionate and fully dedicated to helping businesses do more with less and maximize social media engagement opportunities. Prior to founding Sprout Social, Justyn was a sales leader in the enterprise software space for 10 years and has written two books on the subject of leveraging technology to impact sales.

Eric Johnson

Eric Johnson is EVP of multimedia sales for ESPN’s Customer Marketing and Sales group. Johnson leads U.S. and international multimedia ad sales team efforts, responsible for all sales activity across all of ESPN’s businesses. Johnson’s tenure at ESPN began 14 years ago as an account executive for West Coast account television sales. Prior to joining ESPN, Johnson worked at TIME magazine. Mediaweek has named him one of the most indispensable executives shaping the future of media. Currently, Johnson sits on the Board of Directors for IAB and MPA.

Colleen Kennedy

Colleen joined the Lightbank team in summer 2013. Colleen executes public relations campaigns for Lightbank’s portfolio companies and Chicago startups. In her role, Colleen works with startups to develop their messages, and share their stories with the media. Before joining Lightbank, Colleen worked as a Media Relations Specialist at Walker Sands Communications, a tech PR agency. She conducted media relations for tech startups and public companies, including HarperCollin’s tech division.

Marc Landsberg

Marc is the founder and CEO of socialdeviant, a social media agency dedicated to creating value for brands in a socially connected world. Marc has 20+ years of marketing and M&A experience, serving as CEO of the digital agency MRM (part of IPG) and Arc Worldwide, the digital arm of Leo Burnett. He also served as a director of a private equity firm, Lake Capital. Early in his career, Marc co-founded startup Digital Knowledge Assets, a Web-based knowledge-management platform, with Twitter CEO Dick Costolo and telcoms guru Tim McDonald.

Brian Lisi

Brian has more than 12 years of experience applying technology solutions to financial and media verticals. Clients have included Orange, Blackberry, Microsoft, and Intuit. Prior to founding Qello, Brian built a solid legacy of leadership and innovation as the driving force behind online financial data aggregation web properties where he authored, developed, and implemented the leading middleware transactional platform for 35 of the largest financial and brokerage institutions including Fidelity, UBS, and Merrill Lynch.

Brandon Martinez

Brandon is the Co-Founder & CEO of INDMUSIC. Current Channel Partners include Decon, Mad Decent, IAMSOUND, okayplayer, Baeble Music, Brendan Benson, SongsToWearPants, and ClaraCMusic. INDMUSIC was founded in 2011 with Jon Baltz (VP, Administration), Allen Debevoise (CEO, Machinima), and Guy Oseary (Partner, Untitled Entertainment). Previously, Martinez was the Head of Digital Media at Abrams Artists Agency, a top 10 bicoastal talent & literary agency. Martinez has spoken at CMJ, SXSW, NATPE, and many other events.

Joe Matthews

Joe Matthews is co-founder of Tagkast, a social advertising platform that turns event photography into branded content. Prior to Tagkast, Joe co-founded Poggled, an events and daily deals for nightlife, while attending Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management. Before Kellogg, Joe worked in investment banking and retail consulting.

Mike McAvoy

Mike McAvoy is the President of The Onion, an American digital media company and news satire organization. On November 8, 2013, Onion Inc. CEO Steve Hannah and President Mike McAvoy announced in Crain’s Chicago Business that The Onion would move to an all-digital format by that December, citing a 30% year-over-year growth in page views to McAvoy received a Bachelor of Arts in Finance, Spanish & Accounting from University of Saint Thomas.

Jennifer Miller

Jennifer is President and Chief Operating Officer at Audiosocket, Inc. She is the former Executive Director of a national extreme sports association (WWSRA). During her tenure, she began scouting talent and providing music clearance services for extreme sports films and built up a network within the music industry. Jenn then spent two years working as CEO of her own consulting company. In 2007, she and Brent partnered up to begin developing the foundation and vision that would become Audiosocket.

Kathryn Minshew

Kathryn Minshew is the Muse’s CEO and number one swashbuckler. Kathryn has spoken at MIT and Harvard, appeared on The TODAY Show and CNN, and contributes on career and entrepreneurship to the Wall Street Journal and Harvard Business Review. She was named to Forbes’ 30 Under 30 in Media and Inc.’s 15 Women to Watch in Tech. Before founding The Muse, Kathryn worked on vaccines in Rwanda and Malawi with the Clinton Health Access Initiative and was previously at McKinsey. Say hi on Twitter @KMin

Phil Penton

Phil is Partner and Chief Operating Officer at SocialDealer. Phil specializes in revenue enhancement through the application of technology into the day to day processes of a startup enterprise. After forming and managing several small businesses, Phil worked with HomeNet Automotive as Vice President of Business Development. Phil worked daily with other business owners nationwide on how to better design, build, implement, and execute solid business plans that were built to drive revenue and profits using the same concepts and philosophies.

Aaron Rankin

Aaron is CTO and co-founder of Sprout Social, a leading social media management and engagement platform. He leads the company’s technology strategy as well as the growing team of developers and engineers. Aaron has astutely built the team’s tech culture around simplicity, scrappiness and common sense. Prior to co-founding Sprout, Aaron held various leadership and solution development positions at Endeca Technologies. His work on information discovery systems and big data led a natural progression into emerging technologies.

Eric Sheinkop

Eric started out in management, forming Bandit Productions. He concluded that “it wasn’t about the record labels anymore [or the] traditional lanes artists used to hope for or aspire to. There were a lot more opportunities out there.” Sheinkop wound up rapping on a McDonald’s commercial, inspiring him to create Music Dealers with his brother Jonathan and partners. Now he’s doing deals with Coke, MTV, CBS and the Facebook gaming company Kboom for a client list of product lines, TV and film studios, ad agencies and videogame manufacturers.

Lisa Winning

Lisa Winning is the Founder and CEO of HeTexted Inc. Launched only 18 months ago, and with 1.8 million users, HeTexted gives answers to dating and relationship questions. Lisa and her Co-founder Carrie Henderson McDermott raised a lightning seed round led by the New York Angels’ Fund, while also securing media deals with Simon & Schuster, Random House and William Morris Endeavor. HeTexted’s mission is to build “Google for Relationship Questions”.


Learn about the integrated framework upon which digital networks operate from those leading the charge on the cutting edge of information technology.



Alex Brown

As CEO of 10th Magnitude, the Chicago-based, Microsoft Azure-specialized cloud software and services firm he founded in 2010, Alex spends his days converting his clients to cloud tech so they can unleash corporate innovation. Alex currently sits on Microsoft’s exclusive “Born In The Cloud” advisory board, and 10th Magnitude is an Azure Circle Partner recognized as one of the nation’s leading firms for Azure development and migration.

Yael Cosset

As Global Chief Information Officer, Cosset providesleadership focused on building innovative, world class products and solutions including an expanded portfolio in the digital personalization area. Cosset also serves as Chief Executive Officer of KSS Retail,a dunnhumby company and a global enterprise software provider of price modeling and optimisation solutions for retailers worldwide. In this capacity, Cosset interacts with executives and clients from both companies in order to ensure access to the value and services they jointly deliver.

Christian Dawson

Chairman and co-founder Internet Infrastructure Coalition (i2coalition) Christian Dawson creates an open conversation between hosting and IT infrastructure companies and decision makers both public and private. Christian and the I2coalition educates legislators, helps develop best business practices, and promotes the industry’s messages. Along with his capacity as chairman and co-founder of i2coalition, Christian is also the Chief Operating Officer of Servint.

George Demet

George DeMet is the founder and co-owner of For nearly two decades he’s helped high-profile corporate, educational, cultural, and non-profit clients develop effective online strategies. George is an active open source advocate, serving on the Advisory Board of the Drupal Association, as well as several of the organization’s committees. He’s helped organize many open source community events, including DrupalCon Chicago in 2011, and is a frequent speaker at conferences and other industry events.

Tiffany Farriss

Tiffany Farriss is the President of Chicago-based, which she has bootstrapped along with CEO George DeMet into an influential and still growing Web design and development firm. For Palantir, Tiffany specializes in providing project leadership and strategy through consultation, project planning and training. Tiffany has over 16 years of experience working with a wide variety of clients in universities, cultural institutions and corporate organizations. An open source enthusiast, she serves as the Treasurer of the Drupal Association.

Jordan Jacobs

Jordan brings more than a decade of business strategy and product development experience in the cloud, hosting, and managed services market to SingleHop. As VP of Products, Jordan oversees the entire SingleHop product lifecycle from conceptualization to market. Jordan is extremely technical with practical business aptitude derived from professional experiences spanning from cloud architecture and design, to data center engineering.

Jon Schepke

Jon is an Internet marketing industry veteran who has been in the space for over a decade. Jon has driven innovative marketing strategies that focused on achieving significant ROI for multiple Fortune 1000 companies. Jon’s broad understanding of the space include: all facets of Internet marketing, technology, web analytics, web video, research and tracking tools. As CEO, Jon manages all day-to-day operations, helps drive the company’s business and product development, sales and marketing, partnerships and strategic direction.


Maximizing Impact through Technology
Date: Friday, June 27
Time: 9AM-12PM
Location: Merchandise Mart, 7th floor



Hope Bertram

Emmy Nominated Hope Bertram jumped into the digital marketing scene early on. She went on to interactive marketing positions with top companies such as GE, Discover Card and Sears. In 2007 she founded Digital Megaphone, giving marketing professionals and influencers the opportunity to network, learn and socialize. Digital Megaphone has connected more than 3,000 marketers through cutting-edge educational events. Bertram recently launched the Powerful Woman Project a video series featuring accomplished women.

Brian Lauterbach

Over the last fifteen years, Brian has worked with more than 100 nonprofit organizations throughout the United States to increase their contributed revenue capacity. Leading the redesign and integration of annual fund, major gifts corporate sponsorship, membership, ticket sales, special events, and board development, Brian has helped to raise a combined total of nearly $400 million from 3 million people.

Kevin Pujanauski

Kevin Pujanauski is the VP of Business Operations at Jail Education Solutions, a social enterprise dedicated to improving inmate outcomes during incarceration and after release by introducing secure tablet technology to enable self-driven education and approved entertainment content. Prior to JES, his experience at McKinsey & Company included multiple projects for $100MM+ public-private partnerships and non-profit organizations, as well as significant corporate experience across industries.

Dan Ratner

Serial entrepreneur, author, engineer, and life tourist. Dan has started companies in IT consulting, telecoms, and e-commerce. With his wife, Genevieve, he founded and operated Sittercity, the nation’s first and largest site for matching parents and babysitters, petsitters, elder care, tutors, and housesitters, and still serve on the board. More recently he served as Director of Development at Obama for America and am now working as a co-founder of Public Good Software.

Aleca Sullivan

Aleca’s over 25 years of experience in economic development and community outreach cross the private, nonprofit and government sectors. She is thrilled to be helping Benevolent transform the way we give, using today’s technology to make giving engaging, personal and enriching for donors and recipients alike.


There is no shortage of advice on how to start smart, but this summit will teach you how to stay smart and grow towards post-revenue glory.



Shradha Agarwal

ContextMedia co-founder Shradha Agarwal has a passion for people and communication as well as finding alignment of profit and purpose, starting her first media enterprise at age 9. When building ContextMedia, she branded the healthcare media company as for-benefit. Shradha designed the media and marketing strategies, and developed expansion initiatives that doubled the company’s growth. ContextMedia has been recognized as 101 Best & Brightest Companies to Work For two years as well as a Top Gen Y Employer.

Austin Allison

As founder and CEO of dotloop, Austin Allison embodies the true nature of leadership – taking his company from startup to market leader. Allison has built a company that fundamentally changed the way real estate is bought and sold every day. Allison was named to Forbes 30 Under 30 list in 2012, Inman News Top 100 Most Influential Real Estate Leaders and was one of ten CEOs featured as “Ohio’s Most Talented Entrepreneuers” by CEO Magazine.

Michael Alter

Michael is the Chief Executive Officer of The Tie Bar, LLC. Founded on the premise that a well‐made tie shouldn’t cost a fortune, they have become the #1 e‐commerce destination for stylish men’s accessories. Michael was a co-founder and CEO of SurePayroll, a Chicago-based technology company that is now a wholly owned subsidiary of Paychex®. Michael’s other experience includes work at McKinsey and IBM. For years, he was a columnist at and in 2012 was named the Illinois Technology Association CityLIGHTS CEO of the Year.

Chris Bard

For 20 years Chris has worked full time in the area of U.S. federal, state, and non-U.S. R&D tax services. He has identified more than $1 billion in R&D benefits for companies in virtually every industry and supported over 90% of those benefits on exam or at appeals. Formerly with PricewaterhouseCoopers, LLP, Chris has designed and implemented procedures and technologies for large-, mid-, and small-cap companies to identify and document their R&D costs and activities in the most efficient and effective manner.

Daniela Bolzmann

Daniela, most recently head of Product Marketing at edtech startup, SymbalooEDU, growing it from a startup to a successful 200k community of engaged educators worldwide. Graduate of the Miyahlo School of Business at CSUF and Founder of SocialSkoop, a digital marketing agency consulting 200+ restaurants in California. She is currently in the TechStars class of ‘2014 and serves on the council for Ms.Tech, dedicated to helping women entrepreneurs gain access to resources they need.

Anand Chari

Anand is Executive Vice President & Chief Technology Officer of Gogo. He brings more than twenty years of experience in the wireless communications and telecom industry with him to this position. Mr. Chari has been playing a critical role in the design and development of Gogo’s air-to-ground broadband connectivity concept and technology. He also leads the development of Gogo’s portfolio of satellite solutions. He served as a consultant to Gogo from 2003 to 2006, and was hired as Vice President of Engineering in July 2006.

Anthony Broad-Crawford

Anthony Broad-Crawford serves as CTO at Fooda and has previously served as CPO at GiveForward and CTO at Within3. Anthony has an established history as a technology executive who builds great teams that build great products. Anthony also has a proven track-record for growing and leading small and large organizations comprised of world class, highly skilled individuals that consistently exceed expectations on throughput and quality while continuously building a teams core competencies.

Matthew Cobb

As the VP of Product, Matthew oversees all product development and technology efforts at Valkre Solutions, a company bootstrapped and built in Chicago. Valkre helps create better B2B companies by providing software-based solutions for improving customer value and revenue growth. As founding developer of the company, Matthew provides strategic vision and leadership for building and scaling Valkre’s technology platform, and is a strong advocate for applying lean startup and customer development principles in both start-up and enterprise organizations.

George Deeb

George Deeb is a Managing Partner at Red Rocket Ventures. George is a serial entrepreneur who launched, VC funded and sold his two startups (iExplore and MediaRecall) to billion dollar companies. He is the author of the best-selling book, “101 Startup Lessons—An Entrepreneur’s Handbook”, and the widely read Red Rocket Blog. He is a weekly contributor on entrepreneurship for Forbes, Entrepreneur, WSJ, TNW and others, and has been honored as an E&Y Entrepreneur of the Year and a Crains Tech 50 member.

Bobby Emamian

Bobby is the co-founder and CEO of Prolific Interactive, a mobile agency headquartered in DUMBO Brooklyn, with offices in San Francisco. Bobby and his team have worked with such companies as ModCloth, Lululemon, Rent the Runway, and Threadless to build their mobile products. Bobby also sits on the Quinnipiac University Entrepreneurship Advisory Board and the New York Digital District Welcome Committee.

Brad Farris

As principal advisor at Anchor Advisors, Brad Farris guides business owners through the pitfalls and joys of growing their business. Brad is a speaker and author, and also heads, an online business owner community. With an MBA from Northwestern University, Brad is passionate about business and helping business owners find better ways to do things, make more money and enjoy life more. He is an accredited Executive Associate of the Institute for Independent Business and a member of Vistage.

Jeff Hoffman

Jeff Hoffman is a serial entrepreneur and internationally recognized innovator who has been a founder and CEO in a number of startups and high growth companies, including,, and ColorJar. Jeff writes a regular column on innovation and entrepreneurship for Inc. Magazine, and works with the White House, the US State Department, and entrepreneurial organizations all over the world to support business and economic growth initiatives.

David Monhait

David Monhait, SinLabel’s managing partner, comes from a traditional background in architecture, design and planning. His vision and design process have led to various nationally acclaimed experiential and digital projects. In addition to SinLabel, David consults and is active in a small handful of start-ups in action sports, design and music between Chicago and Los Angeles. You can find David ripping on boards of all kinds and walking his little dog Tiger.

Ryan Ozonian

Ryan is the President & Co-Founder of Cyber Dust – Disappearing Chat Messenger. In it’s first few months on the market, Cyber Dust has become a top 100 social networking application and a leading product in the ephemeral messaging space. Ozonian is partnered with serial entrepreneur, Mark Cuban who became a primary investor in Ozonian’s gaming company Mention Mobile in 2010. Since then, Cuban and Ozonian have pivoted away from gaming into the mobile messaging space.

Bill Pescatello

Bill joined Lightbank as a Principal in May 2011. While at Lightbank, Bill led the firm’s investments in Centzy, Locu (acquired by GoDaddy), Ovuline and Contently (co-lead), while also sitting on the boards of Udemy, Snapsheet, Fooda, Lifecrowd and Whoshere. Bill joined the team from NBCUniversal, where he was a VP and founding member of the Peacock Equity Fund, a $250m venture arm for NBCUniversal. While at Peacock Equity, Bill served as board rep at Greystripe, Ramp and Vivox.

Ross Peterson

Ross Petersen is a Co-Founder of Blitsy, a venture-backed e-commerce company vertically focused on serving the $30B Arts and Crafts market. Previous to Blitsy, Ross was Co-Founder of ScrapHD, a SaaS platform that was acquired by the world’s largest Arts and Crafts retailer, Michaels Stores. He is a Chicago-native who enjoys golf, lacrosse and going to Montrose Dog Beach with his wife and 2 dogs.

Ryan Peterson

Ryan Petersen is a Co-Founder of Blitsy, a venture-backed e-commerce company vertically focused on serving the $30B Arts and Crafts market. Previous to Blitsy, Ryan was Co-Founder of ScrapHD, a SaaS platform that was acquired by the world’s largest Arts and Crafts retailer, Michaels Stores. He has been in the crafting industry for over 10 years and for the last 8 years has enjoyed bringing his dog, Ranger, with him to the office everyday.

Sanjib Sahoo

Sanjib was awarded AITP’s “2013 CIO of the Year Award” and other industry awards. He directs all aspects of IT for tradeMONSTER Group’s online retail brokerage,, and its financial media site, He has been with tradeMONSTER Group since it was founded in 2006 and masterminded their innovative, award-winning brokerage technology platform, tradeMONSTER, rated as best options trading platform by Barron’s. He is the visionary architect of tradeMONSTER’s patent pending mobile app ranked best in the financial industry.

Jill Salzman

The Founding Moms is the world’s first and only kid-friendly collective of monthly meetups for mom entrepreneurs. Graduate of Brown University and law school, started Paperwork Media LLC. Jill has been featured in national media outlets including CNN’s Headline News, People Magazine, The Chicago Tribune, Daily Candy Kids, Business Matters, WGN TV and WAHM Talk Radio. Her TED talk, Why Moms Make The Best Entrepreneurs, received rave reviews. Recently named in Top 50 Women To Watch In Tech and Top 100 Champion Small Business Influencer.

Gary Shapiro

Gary Shapiro is the President and CEO of the Consumer Electronics Association. Shapiro is also the author of the best-selling book The Comeback: How Innovation Will Restore the American Dream and numerous opinion pieces published in outlets such as Forbes, The Huffington Post, The Daily Caller, and numerous other publications.

Asha Sharma

Asha is responsible for marketing and communications, including consumer, b2b, public relations, brand, social media marketing, loyalty, virility, channel, and evangelism. Asha worked at Microsoft where she led channel and direct marketing for an incubation cloud business, the commercial marketing launch across the US for Windows 8, and most recently global lifestyle and celebrity public relations for Xbox. Asha was recognized by the President and Whitehouse for her efforts around creating a 501(c)3 social entrepreneurship serving at risk teens.

Dr. Charles Sidman

Dr. Sidman was elected Board Member (Investors Seat) & President of the Crowdfunding Professional Association in October 2013. He is Managing Partner of ECS Capital Partners LLC, a Venture Fund investing in early-stage and growth enterprises, & is a retired Professor in the Medical and Business Colleges of the University of Cincinnati. He remains an active member in the Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethics, and also founded and leads the organization Crowdfunding Investment Angels.

Gene Stefanyshyn

Eugene (Gene) Stefanyshyn, Vice President of Innovation and Racing Development, joined NASCAR last year following three decades with General Motors. He is working closely with NASCAR’s C-suite as the organization is using new technology to transform auto racing.

Josh Tetrick

Josh is the CEO & Founder of Hampton Creek, a food technology company recently backed by Li Ka-shing, the wealthiest man in Asia, and chosen by Bill Gates as one of three companies shaping the future of food. Interviewed for his work with Hampton Creek by CBS, Travel Channel, Forbes, The New York Times, and The Wall Street Journal, amongst others. Prior, Josh led a UN business initiative in Kenya, worked for both former President Clinton and the President of Liberia, and taught street children as a Fulbright Scholar in Nigeria and South Africa.

Howard Tullman

Howard is the CEO of 1871 – where digital startups get their start and the General Managing Partner of G2T3V, LLC and of Chicago High Tech Investment Partners. He is a member of Mayor Emanuel’s Chicago NEXT and Cultural Affairs Councils and of Governor Quinn’s Illinois Innovation and Arts Councils; member of President Preckwinkle’s New Media Council; adjunct professor at Kellogg; and advisor to many start-ups. He is the former Chairman & CEO of Tribeca Flashpoint Media Arts Academy and founded more than a dozen high-tech companies.

Patrick Wallace

Patrick is the Regional Leader for BDO’s R&D Tax Services Practice for Atlantic, Central, and Southeast US Regions. He has 13 years of experience advising clients on federal and state tax matters and extensive experience leading the implementation of R&D tax credit studies. Patrick has advised a range of privately-held businesses to billion-dollar publicly-traded companies in an array of industries, including automotive, engineering, consumer products, food products, defense, software, and a variety of other manufacturers.

Kevin Willer

Kevin is a Partner at Chicago Ventures, a seed-stage venture capital fund where he is overseeing all aspects of Chicago Ventures including fund management, deal sourcing and investments, and working directly with portfolio companies. He sits on the boards of Blitsy, Elicit, SimpleRelevance, and GetSet. He joined the fund in June 2013.

Brad Wilson

Brad Wilson is the Founder & Editor-in-Chief of Brad started BradsDeals in 2001 as a poor college student to show his friends and fellow students how to save money using tips and tricks online. Brad Wilson is a nationally-known savings expert and professional bargain-hunter. He has appeared on The Early Show, FOX & Friends, USA Today, The New York Times, TIME, AOL Daily Finance, and many other national and local news outlets.


A balanced look at the rapidly changing wellness ecosystem is the focus of this summit. We will explore a billion dollar tech opportunities in the health and wellness sphere.



Subbu Arumugam

Subbu is the managing partner of SugarSnap, a start-up that provides post-grad med ed content for doctors – with CME credit. He’s also a co-organizer for Chicago Health 2.0, a chapter of the national Health 2.0 organization. This group offers a forum for enthusiasts in health and healthcare technology to network and present innovative ideas involving quality improvement, cost efficiency, and healthcare accessibility.

Jonathan Bush

Jonathan Bush is CEO and President of athenahealth, Inc. He co-founded the Company in 1997 and took it public in 2007 in the most successful initial public offering that year. Today, athenahealth remains one of the health care information technology industry’s fastest growing companies. Previously, Bush served as an EMT for the City of New Orleans, was trained as a medic in the U.S. Army, and worked as a management consultant in the health care practice of Booz Allen & Hamilton.

Jeffrey Carter

Jeffrey Carter is an angel investor and independent trader. He specializes in turning concepts into profits. In April of 2007, he co-founded Hyde Park Angels, one of the most active angel groups in the United States. He is a former member of the CME Board of Directors. Currently he is trying to raise a small VC fund, West Loop Ventures. He holds a MBA from the University of Chicago, Booth Graduate School of Business.

Patrick Flavin

Flavin is an entrepreneur and corporate lawyer with over 15 years of experience in the life sciences field. He is the Executive Director of MATTER, a Chicago medtech center. Previous to this role, Mr. Flavin has helped build several life sciences companies in the Chicago area, including MediChem Life Sciences and Advanced Life Sciences, both of which he helped to take public on NASDAQ while serving as each company’s chief legal executive. In addition to his experiences as chief legal executive, Mr. Patrick Flavin also co-founded a venture capital fund.

Ron Gutman

As Founder and CEO of HealthTap, Ron is responsible for the company’s innovation, vision and product. He is an avid public speaker and writer, and serves as the Curator of TEDx Silicon Valley. Prior to HealthTap, Ron was the founder and CEO of a leading online consumer health company that developed the world’s largest community of independent health writers. Ron is also an angel investor and advisor to health and technology companies Rock Health, Stanford’s Medicine X, and Harvard Medical School’s SMArt Initiative.

Marc Lessem

Marc is a seasoned medical device executive, and the Co-founder and CEO of Caraseal, a startup combatting hospital acquired infections. Prior to starting Caraseal, Marc worked for 30 years in the healthcare industry having spent his career in the Finance, Sales and Marketing organizations of global industry leaders like Baxter (formerly American Hospital Supply), Astellas (formerly Lyphomed), B. Braun and Medline. Over the past 14 years with Medline, he was part of a team that saw annual revenues grow from approx. $700M to approx. $7B.

Andrew Moyer

Andrew manages the lead agency for economic development in Illinois, and coordinates across offices for business development, entrepreneurship and innovation, international trade, workforce and training, tourism, film, energy assistance, community development and energy and recycling. In his role at Illinois DCEO he is responsible for program and budget development, personnel decisions, policy implementation, intra- and inter-agency coordination and external relations.

Maryam Saleh

Maryam is Managing Director and founder of the Center for Device Development (CD2) at Northwestern’s Innovation and New Ventures Office. CD2 houses a fellowship program in medical device innovation where doctors and engineers team up to commercialize their own healthcare technology with the support of mentors at Northwestern and beyond. Maryam was a founding member of a startup, Cyberkinetics Neurotechnology Systems Inc., where her team developed and tested a brain implant to restore movement in quadriplegic individuals.

Philippe Schwartz

Philippe was appointed President of Withings Inc. in May 2013, having previously been the founder and CEO of ooVoo and CEO of NBase Communications. With over fifteen years experience as a senior executive in various Internet and telecommunications markets, Philippe has a proven track record in developing companies toward high-revenue growth and profitability and in identifying new market opportunities.



Techweek builds a more complete experience by connecting the topics that are explored on stage to what is happening at the expo hall and the gatherings that are hosted throughout the event.


  1. Three nights of renowned artists featuring indie & electronic acts. Local bands kick off the fest on the South Drive in front of the majestic Merchandise Mart & along the banks of the famous Chicago River.
  2. Enjoy libations, one-of-a-kind spectacles, & dance the night away at one of the most unique music festivals in the country.

  3. View Lineup

St Lucia will take over the South Drive Friday, June 27 View Lineup

  1. Witness, first-hand, the vanguard of companies and entrepreneurs, re-imagining the home of your dreams.
  2. Technology graces and improves every aspect of our lives. Why would it not follow you home? Interact with products and exhibits that will change the way you heat, light, sleep, and entertain in your home in the years to come

Maker Bot’s 3D Printer in action at Techweek

  1. Technology can’t change the way you eat and drink. Yet, technology can change how you eat and drink.
  2. From finding sustainable solutions to food production to revolutionizing the way we distill spirits, technology has never been more delicious.

Techweek attendees indulge in tasty eats on the South Drive

  1. We’ve got our own red carpet, and it’s only for Techweek attendees – enjoy documentaries, new products, and insightful films diving into the future of how media is consumed.
  2. Gain exclusive access to films before they hit the general public, and partake in Q&A sessions with directors, actors, and writers pioneering brave topics.

Downloaded director, Alex Winter with Techweek attendees

  1. Have what it takes to win the very first Techweek Hackfest? Coding gladiators will battle it out, round by round, until they make APIs sing.
  2. Solve, develop, and innovate while you and your team compete for prizes and are evaluated by an industry leading panel of judges.

Attendees compete in Hackathon


  • 150+ companies pack the floor with innovative products & insights to give Techweek attendees an unrivaled peek into the next wave of technology
  • New business, new clients and new perspectives — all at one of the nation’s most anticipated trade shows.

New Amsterdam shave lounge at Techweek Chicago 2013

  • Meet and talk to the very hiring managers building the teams changing the playing field. Shop around, and find your next dream job in tech.
  • 75+ tech companies will be looking to fill their talented ranks – will you be their next stellar find?

Trading Technologies engages attendees at the Techweek Hiring Fair

  • Meet the 100+ teams of risk-takers showing off their innovative products, services, and ideas while they compete for a grand prize of $100,000 in cash and prizes.
  • Be part of the fray as a panel of judges that includes entrepreneurs, investors, professors, journalists and CEOs analyze the potential success of the leading start-ups.

2013 Launch winner, WeDeliver celebrate with Mayor Emanuel

  • Gain a true understanding of some of tech’s most preeminent visionaries while they speak on topics ranging from developing their niche industries to managing mammoth tech empires.
  • Industry leaders gather on stage to fuel ground-breaking panels, and deliver keynotes These elements fuse on stage for a truly immersive experience.

CTOs Leon Chism, Harper Reed and others speak to a packed room

  • A new element to the Expo – meet experts from fields ranging from public relations, video production, social media marketing, and many other fields.
  • Listen in on, or ask a burning question while you dynamically interact with real-world business experts. Vital content finally meets direct audience engagement at The Knowledge Bar.

Creator Up! Co-Founder Michael Tringe leads a Q&A at the TKB

  • Partake in curated group discussions ranging from topics regarding how to handle a social media crisis to how to capture funding for your burgeoning startup.
  • Learn from industry experts and fellow attendees in this remarkable new, engaging format

Campfire session at the Polsinelli Smart Lounge

  • Daily alumni meet-ups and happy hours keep the vibe going all day in the best bar in town. Imbibe with your new business partners or old friends.
  • Beer pong tournaments, DJs, and all the refreshments all the refreshments one could want are waiting at Bar Techweek.

Attendees socialize over cocktails at Bar Techweek

  • Play cutting-edge games and see the best of what is on the horizon of gaming. Meet the developers and engineers that are making this new artform possible.
  • Compete, collaborate, and kick some butt with other attendees at the Techweek Gamer’s lounge.

Techweek attendees get their adrenaline pumping at the Gamers Lounge


  • This ain’t your average food court. We’ve lined the Merchandise Mart’s South Drive with the finest food trucks in the Windy City.
  • Sample special offerings and prices while industry judges vote to crown the winner of the annual Food Truck Face-Off!

Attendees swarm the Mart to get their hands on Food Truck treats

  • Ever wondered where the amazing companies of Chicago call home? The Techweek Grand Tour gives you a sneak peak into the most dynamic, exciting office spaces in the city.
  • Journey alongside local executives on their turf, as they give insight to what makes their companies tick.

Katie Spriggs of Centro hard at work during the Grand Tour

  • Take over Bar Techweek inside the expo hall – kick it like only your company knows how to!
  • Gather with your favorite associates to celebrate your collaborative accomplishments or meet up with your new co-founder!

George Bousis and the Raise team enjoying the Groupon Happy Hour

  • Each year that the Techweek conference grows, so do our parties! In our 4th year we have teed up some unforgettable events at the city’s hottest venues to cap off each productive day
  • To give you a tiny hint: past Techweek parties have included the 2013 Stanley Cup champs, the Chicago Blackhawks & Calvin Harris – just saying.

Drinks flow as attendees kick back at Techweek parties

  • Tech has transformed many aspects. Fashion will never be the same. Styles, pieces, & brands gain exposure through new channels and make defining and sharing your style as easy as tapping “share.”
  • The FashionTECH Runway Show is the defining intersection of tech, fashion and e-commerce. Grab a front-row seat to the hottest runway show featuring tech influenced designers.

The fabulous models closing out the FashionTECH Runway Show

  • At one of the most unique music venues in the city, the South Drive stage will feature local and international acts of all genres and will be the nucleus of the Future Sounds Music Festival.
  • Three nights of first-rate groups will grace the stage, while the sounds of their tunes and fan’s cheers resound off the stunning Chicago Skyline and River. You don’t want to miss this beat.

JC Brooks & The Uptown Sound rocking out on the South Drive Stage


  • Categorized speakers, expo booths, and professional workshops
  • Witness the pioneers of new technologies and topics that push the boundaries of modern day innovation meets attendees at their expo booth

  • Educational sessions & specialized workshops
  • Focus ranges from professional development to new technology implementation

Motorola gives a hands on demo at the Technical Stage

  • Home of the future of tech – past speakers include likes of Travis Kalanick (CEO, Uber) and Craig Newmark (Founder, Craigslist)
  • Technology’s leading CEOs, founders, and rule-breakers share their stories

Matt Mullenweg of & Stefan Wietz of Bing at Techweek

  • The fun doesn’t stop when you leave the Techweek floor – attend a slew of events all over town
  • Choose between workshops, brunches, happy hours, office tours and more

Launch winner WeDeliver celebrate at the CDW Bootleggers Ball




The Merchandise Mart is a transportation hub. “L” trains, buses and taxis stop at the building’s doorstep. The Mart is walking distance from the Metra stations and moments from the Ohio Street ramp of 90/94. A variety of parking facilities are just steps away.

    The building is easily accessible by the following travel options:
  • CTA bus stops & elevated “L” stop on the second floor
  • Taxi stand on the South Drive
  • Walking distance to Ogilvy and Union Stations
  • Quick, easy driving access to major expressways

Join, take, ride, return! Bike your way to Techweek Chicago on a Divvy. All Divvy 24-Hour passes will be $5 (usually $7) throughout the week of Techweek Chicago June 23-June 29. Make your way to the conference without worrying about the traffic and enjoy the beautiful sights this great city has to offer! Visit the nearest Divvy station to get started today!

Arrive to Techweek Chicago in style with our National Transportation Partner, Uber! Enter the promo code ‘TECHWEEKCHI’ to receive a discount up to $20 off of your first ride (if you are a new user)! Already using Uber? Enter the code ‘TWCVIP’ for 10% off your ride to or from the Merchandise Mart! Get started now:

Techweek has partnered with Parking Panda, the nationwide leader in online parking reservations, to allow visitors to purchase guaranteed parking passes at several locations within easy walking distance the Merchandise Mart.

Inventory is limited and garages will fill up before the event, so it is strongly recommended that you purchase Parking Passes for Techweek in advance if driving.

Click below to purchase parking or select a location from the interactive map:



You’re savvy, you’ve got your badge, and now you’re on the road to one amazing experience at Techweek.

We’ve reserved discounted blocks at two River North hotels for our amazing attendees.

Hampton Inn & Suites Chicago-Downtown

Minutes from Techweek | 800- 429-1152

Book by the 23rd

Holiday Inn

Three minutes from Techweek | (312) 836-5000

Book Here

The Godfrey

Ten minutes from Techweek | (312) 649-2000

Book Here

These blocks will guarantee you discounted rates from Wednesday June 25th to Sunday June 29th.

If booking by phone at the Holiday Inn, please call (312) 836-5000 & mention code CT7 for a discounted rate.