Speakers at the IT Leadership Strategies Conference

Mike An
Mike is responsible for delivering world class mobile business solutions to Solstice's clients. He has a successful background in helping organizations realize further return on investment in their ERPs by extending existing workflows and leveraging emerging technologies in creative ways to build mobile line of business applications. Mike was the lead architect for the mobile point of sale and inventory management solutions that won Microsoft's 2009 Mobility Solutions for Business Applications award. His passion is for helping enterprises envision new uses for mobility and helping them define and realize that vision.

Joel Basgall
Over the past twenty-four years, Joel has been a technical leader and innovator in software and data architecture, practice management, and project leadership.  He has combined this expertise and solid methodology to mold groups of people into hyper-efficient software development teams.  Joel’s technical background covers mainframe, client/server and internet, and transcends specific platforms. Joel’s particularly unique and powerful contribution to Geneca is his “thinking methodology” which allows him to quickly and correctly abstract software requirements into systems-level designs that are robust and extensible. Prior to Geneca, Joel owned another software firm and was employed by such organizations as Kemper Financial and McMaster Carr.  Joel earned his BS in Computer Science from Northern Illinois University.

William Caraher
William Caraher is a Corporate CIO with 18 years of extensive experience managing and supporting technology in fast-paced, multi-million dollar transactional environments. He is very passionate about emerging technology, innovation in the enterprise and the applications of Social Media not discussed in the main stream. Bill often lectures, participates in panel discussions and writes about Social Media, emerging technologies, software and gadgets. He has his undergraduate degree from DePaul University, his MBA from Marquette University and a MCSE Certification from Microsoft. Bill is an advisory board member to several companies and is on the board of the Milwaukee IT Leadership Forum. Contact Bill on Twitter: @WilliamCaraher, email:bcaraher@vonbriesen.com or on the web at: http://c3social.com.
Karthikeyan Chakkarapani
Karthik is an accomplished Business Technology leader with 14 plus years of experience in strategy, business architecture, technology leadership and management across many industries. Karthik has strong expertise in enabling and transforming business using simple, creative and innovative technologies and solutions. Karthik has extensive experience in creating value to business by leveraging new and emerging technologies – Collaboration, Enterprise 2.0, Social Media, New Digital Media & Mobile Applications, Cloud Computing, SaaS & Business Discovery.
For the past 6 plus years, Karthik has lead and implemented many business technology initiatives at AHA including the 'Enterprise Social Collaboration & Innovation Platform' project. For this project, AHA got the 2011 Computerworld Honors Program Laureate for the "Collaboration" category. In his current role as IT Director, Technology Solutions & Operations, Karthik is leading the team in design and implementation of new and emerging technology solutions to enable and transform business in revenue growth, cost reduction, process efficiency, new business opportunities and customer satisfaction.
Prior to joining American Hospital Association, Karthik worked as a consultant for Keane, RCN Telecom and Telecom Australia. Karthik holds Master’s degree in Electronics & Telecom Engineering from University of South Australia and MBA in Finance from DePaul University. Karthik is a certified PMP, Agile Scrum Master, ITIL Manager (IT Service Management) & Lean Six Sigma Black Belt professional.
Eytan Dallal
Eytan Dallal is an experienced IT business executive specializing in IT strategy and execution, staff leadership and project management. With over 18 years of experience in IT, Eytan has worked with CEOs and CIOs from an expanse of industries developing and leading technology solutions, and has been the keynote speaker at technology seminars discussing strategies and tactics to IT professionals. Eytan is currently the CIO of the Illinois Framework, a government agency at the State of Illinois dedicated to interoperability and data sharing between State agencies. Prior to working at the State of Illinois, Eytan was Director at the Bureau of Technology at Cook County, the nation's second largest county government. Eytan holds a Bachelors Degree in Business Management from Northeastern Illinois University and is certified in Scrum and ITIL.
Fares Ghanimah
Fares Ghanimah is the Director of Application Development & Support at Harris Associates LP, an investment manager based in Chicago. His role oversees the development and implementation of business solutions that support research, trading and portfolio accounting to name a few. Prior to Harris, Mr. Ghanimah held various leadership positions at Caremark CVS and Allstate. Mr. Ghanimah has an undergraduate degree in Computer Engineering from the University of Illinois at Chicago and an MBA from Northwestern University (Kellogg). He has over 20 years of extensive Information Technology and program management experience. His expertise covers areas of IT strategy, organizational planning, process improvement and technology modernization.

Larry Kallembach

Larry Kallembach is Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer of MB Financial Bank. MB Financial a Chicago based bank with assets of $11.5 billion. Spanning over thirty years Larry’s banking career includes expertise in operations, payment systems, information management and technology, risk management, and mergers including FDIC acquisitions. As CIO at MB Financial his corporate-wide responsibilities include the direction and management of all information technology systems, bank operations, payments and payment systems and the bank’s enterprise risk management systems. His effective leadership is a product of his strategic thinking and interpersonal communication skills. Larry is a former National Board Member of the American Institute of Banking (AIB), and former Chairman of the Illinois Bankers Operations and Technology committee.  Larry currently serves as the Chairman of the FiServe-Signature User Strategic Direction Committee and is a member of the Illinois Bankers Association Board of Directors.  He has taught Finance and Economics at Parkland College and he is a periodic speaker and lecturer for various organizations including the University of Illinois. Larry holds a Bachelor of Science in Finance degree from Indiana University and Master of Business Administration from the University of Illinois.

Bruce Massel

Bruce Massel is the Vice President of Information Technology and the Project Management Office at Fidelitone Logistics.  Bruce has more than 23 years of information technology leadership, management and consulting experience with mid-sized distribution companies. In addition to his IT experience, Bruce also has more than 6 years of operations, sales and web marketing management experience. His career has progressed from a technical programmer to a hands-on business leader in the implementation of innovative and practical technology solutions.  He has led IT departments as CIO in multiple industries after beginning his career at Coopers & Lybrand as an EDP auditor before becoming the practice lead for the Midwest Middle Market IT Consulting Services. Bruce earned his BS in Computer Science from Purdue University and a Masters of Management in Marketing and International Business from Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management.

Gina Papworth
Gina Papworth is currently the Executive Director of IT at Motor Coach Industries. Here responsibilities include: Adherence and setting of budgets for US and CAD operations (US $6 Mil, Canadian $3 Mil), setting I.T. Strategy, Programming Management, Project Management, Operations, Motor Coach Telemetry Systems, Motor Coach Diagnostics Software, Web Services, E-Commerce applications (i.e. Web store, EDI, catalog). Achievements include but not limited to: Helpdesk is no longer a “black hole”; Cost reductions in all budgets, increased utilization of existing tools and software by the business, higher utilization of Lotus Notes Applications, increased personal and departmental productivity enhancements, many processes re-designed, enhanced, or have become more efficient due to analysis and utilizing existing technologies available. Previously, Gina created and implemented a plan for MCI to become PCI Compliant including an annual Security Awareness document that is agreed to by all employees. She created and implemented a Coach Diagnostic Software Update Procedure, by documenting the existing process,revising the process and enhancing the communication throughout the sales forces and service centers. She also created Disaster Recovery Plans, performed several tests and periodic reviews of procedures.
Jes Sherborne
Jes Sherborne is the Managing Principal of Software Development for ZS Associates.
Mark Smith
Mark S. Smith has 25 years of Information Technology experience, including over 20 years of management experience, 15 of which have been in senior management roles. Currently Mark is the Interim CIO, Director of Business Application Development and the Director of the Project Management Office (PMO) at American Water, the nation’s largest investor owned water and wastewater utility company. Mark is responsible for technology solutions for Financial, Customer, Billing and Field Service Operations. His team is comprised of a wide variety of roles including business analysts, programmers, project managers, quality analysts, groupware/web specialists, database administrators, and change management specialists (communication & training). Recent successes for his team have included a customer web self-service solution, internal web hosting, development of a data archive initiative for the company’s customer information system, implementation of disaster recovery for critical applications, and the deployment of a SharePoint-based contract management solution.
Leigh Ann Thomas
Leigh Ann Thomas has over 15 years of experience in business process reengineering, ERP implementations, and client facing engagements spanning the construction, insurance, and utility industries. Today, Leigh Ann focuses on the design, development and communication of technology methodologies (software development and project governance) for the nation’s largest water utility. Throughout her career, Leigh Ann has specialized in representing the needs of the business and speeding the acceptance and adoption of new IT processes. Her work has involved the recruitment and development of change management, business analyst, communications, and training teams that excel at translating ‘IT speak’ to business-focused solutions. She prides herself on the ability to build teams that understand how to partner with the business from initial requirements gathering through end user training in delivering solutions that meet or exceed client expectations. Leigh Ann has experience with a wide variety of technology projects for organizations such as Accenture, CNA Insurance, Deloitte Consulting, Pulte Homes, Britannica.com and American Water.
Gregg Wheeler
Gregg leads Solstice’s Mobile practice and is focused on enterprise mobile strategy and mobile application development with global clients spanning such industries as financial services, media and entertainment, manufacturing and non-for-profits. His passion is in leading high performance teams to build and implement solutions leveraging emerging technologies like mobile, cloud, enterprise 2.0 and social media.
Christopher Willis
Christopher Willis is a highly experienced in the management of corporate information assets. As Senior Director of Cloud and Converged Solutions at Hitachi Data Systems, he provides strategic consulting support to customers in the areas of Cloud and Converged storage and information management solutions. Willis has over 20 years of experience in application and infrastructure assessment and design for Fortune 1000 companies in such verticals as banking, insurance, military contracting, telecommunications and pharmaceuticals. His particular areas of technology expertise include enterprise storage, enterprise resource planning (ERP), business intelligence (BI), data warehousing (DW) and online analytical processing (OLAP) analysis, development implementation and management. Willis joined HDS as a Principal Business Consultant for Canada and the Eastern USA. Willis has held a variety of executive and management roles with HDS, FXinnovation, EMC Corporation, Speedware Corporation, Oracle, STS Systems and Royal Bank of Canada. He began his career as an officer in the Canadian Navy. Willis has a Bachelor of Commerce degree from Concordia University.