Lee Abner, Director, IT, CIBM Bank

Lee Abner has over 25 years in the IT industry, including the last 18 years at CIBM Bank.  In his role at the Bank, Lee provides leadership in the area of technology, providing both strategic and operational perspectives to the bank.  Lee is responsible for all aspects of information technology and information security at the bank, ensuring that all bank employees have the resources they need to provide services to our customers and to ensure that we protect our customers private information.


Prior to the bank, Lee worked as a Technology Consultant for Clifton Gunderson, LLC. And an information systems specialist for the Village of Rantoul.


Lee has a Bachelor of Science degree in General Engineering from Olivet Nazarene University and is a Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP).  He has been featured and quoted in trade articles and has been asked to speak on topics ranging from the use of virtualization to computer security.

Nadirshah N Ali, Senior Director, IT Operations, Forsythe (A Sirius Company)

Nadir Ali is a Sr IT Director responsible for IT operations and Infrastructure at Forsythe. He is responsible for managing the Forsythe Data Centers, defining strategy and leading the implementation of Data Center Projects.


During his tenure at Forsythe he implemented a robust IT Disaster Recovery program which included both private and public cloud options to reduce IT expenditures while helping the business grow.  He has been responsible for evaluating cloud application and develop a matrix that would allow business to determine the benefits of the solutions.


Nadir has also been involved in the Merger and Acquisition planning representing IT.  Nadir’s involvement in the M&A process helped streamline the integration process from an IT standpoint.  He also led IT Cost optimization efforts which resulted in redefining the BCDR implementation and realigning of cloud and network activities.


Nadir holds a Master Degree in Telecommunications from DePaul University and MBA from Loyola University. He also holds several industry related certifications including CISSP.


Besides work, Nadir is an active volunteer at his community center leading several social governance projects. He was awarded The President Volunteer Service Award in 2013.

Steve Anderson, Principal Outbound Product Manager, ITOM, ServiceNow

Steve has worked in enterprise software for 25 years, spanning numerous technology segments including data security, identity management, data center automation, cloud computing, devOps and IT operations. His current role is in product management at ServiceNow, influencing vision and driving solutions in the IT Operation Management suite to market.


Diego Ferrer, Managing Deputy Commissioner, IT & Telecommunications, City of Chicago, Department of Aviation

Diego Ferrer leads the strategic planning efforts of the Information Technology/ Telecommunications division to support the mission of the Chicago Department of Aviation. He leads the efforts to develop solutions that improve passenger experience, reduce costs and enhance operational efficiencies.


He also provides oversight for IT/Telecommunications solutions including: network and desktop support, application development, video and camera management systems, enterprise systems, wireless infrastructure, distributed antenna systems, PCI compliance, content management platforms, and network security.


Diego is a Senior IT Executive with proven track record in systems design, development and maintenance, vendor management, engineering, networking, and office technologies. He has over 25 years of technical experience in the IT Industry and has extensive experience with IT strategic planning.


He has provided technical and managerial leadership for different consulting companies where he managed teams of technology specialists. He managed services provided to several customers, which included application development, technology package selection, acquisition, implementation and support, systems administration, network operations, technical security, disaster recovery, vendor management, business process improvement and end-user support.


He holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Electronics Engineering Technology. He also holds a Management Certificate from Loyola University. He is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) and holds several certifications from IBM, VMware, Microsoft and CompTIA.

Eric Fiste, Vice President, Information Technology, Invenergy, LLC

I have more than 20 years of diverse experience providing valuable technology guidance and managing the implementation and operations of integrated enterprise business applications, highly available IT infrastructures, holistic security postures, and digital business capabilities at many companies and across several industries.



I am currently responsible for technology innovation at Invenergy LLC, overseeing the company’s strategic vision for both information technology (IT) and operations technology (OT), and developing a technology maturity that ensures business and operational requirements are aligned with technology services.



Prior to joining Invenergy in 2012, I worked for a global energy company, responsible for Information Technology strategy, infrastructure, and services across North America. Prior to that, I led practice areas at both large and midsize consulting organizations providing systems integration projects for global Fortune 500 companies.



I have a Computer Science degree from DePauw University, hold certifications with ITIL, and am a Project Management Professional (PMP).

Mark Forbes, Vice President and CIO, D&W Fine Pack

Mark Forbes is the Vice President of Information Technology and joined D&W in February of 2017.


Mark brings over 30 years of IT experience to D&W including over 14 years in Foodservice and Distribution. Mark has successfully built and or transformed several IT organizations into highly collaborative teams who work with business executives to formulate innovative solutions that deliver significant results, creating competitive advantages, in multiple industries. Mark was an early adopter of cloud technology and leverages it to make his team agile, flexible and innovative.


Mark received his MBA from DePaul University and his Computer Science degree for Loyola University of Chicago. Mark enjoys working with various organizations in the Chicagoland area to mentor the next generation of IT leaders.

Chris LeBeau, Global IT Director, Advanced Technology Services

Chris LeBeau is the Global Director of IT at Advanced Technology Services, Inc. With over 25 years of unique experience combining broad technical knowledge, Chris holds a thorough understanding of business and the impact of technology to organizational achievement. Chris has previously held positions at Cisco Systems, AT&T, IBM and began his career in satellite communications with the U.S. Army Space Command.

Anthony Lukken, Director- IT Operations & Support, COUNTRY Financial

Full biography coming soon!

Tom Martin, Customer Success Manager, Integrify

Tom Martin is a former member of the US Navy, who supports individuals and companies in reaching heights previously thought to be unreachable. Mr. Martin utilizes his 20+ years of IT experience meshed with LEAN/5S principles to challenge processes and assist organizations in developing a culture of winning. In less than 5 years at Exacto, Inc., a mid-sized chemical manufacturer, Mr. Martin went from Network Administrator to Director of Operations, while ultimately reducing lead time, increasing quality and most importantly, improving customer satisfaction and employee morale. Now the Manager of Customer Success for Integrify, he works with customers in a variety of markets to help them understand how the phrase “work smarter, not harder” can transform their business.

David Murray, Client Executive, LaSalle Solutions

Dave Murray is a Regional Account Manager for LaSalle Solutions, a nearly 40 year old Technology Management Firm.  He is driven to help his clients by designing custom IT finance and maintenance contract management programs, and preparing their infrastructure to incorporate cloud services.  He works in partnership with regional and national vendors and OEM’s, VAR’s, banks, and consulting firms to bring his clients the best solutions available.  Dave focuses on establishing long-term relationships and listens to his customers in order to understand specific problems that they face.  Prior to joining LaSalle, Dave worked in the Office Services and Office Equipment industry for 15 years.  He holds a Masters Degree from Roosevelt University in Chicago, and lives in Naperville, IL with his wife and three children.

Todd Pombert, Vice President, Infrastructure & Operations, Collegis Education – Chicago

Todd Pombert is the Vice President of Infrastructure and Operations at Collegis Education. In a 20-year career spanning IT services, Pombert has served in technical and leadership roles from system engineering and networking to managing support and field operations. Previously, he served as Director of IT for DeVry University. Pombert received an MBA in finance and marketing from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.

Alex Shvartsman, Director of Infrastructure Services, Hyatt

Alex Shvartsman is currently the Director of Infrastructure Services at Hyatt Corporation.  He also holds a Masters in Business IT from DePaul University.  His experience spans everything from bleeding edge cloud solutions and security platforms to legacy high-availability mainframes.


Outside of his technical experience, Alex truly enjoys the people aspect of what he does. Many times, as leaders and managers, we forget that our accomplishments are really not about us, but rather a reflection of the team we had the opportunity to lead. Alex relishes opportunities to mentor, coach, and train talent. Alex finds great joy in building teams from the ground up, which he has done at Enova Financial and Orbitz Worldwide in various capacities.


Alex has great experience in moving organizations from SMB mindsets to Enterprise grade solutions and methodologies, and he has a proven track record of doing so while maintaining the organizations ever so important culture.

John Spiers, Executive Vice President, Pivot3

John Spiers is a serial entrepreneur based in Boulder, CO. John has been pioneering break-through data storage innovations for over 30 years. John Spiers co-founded venture-backed LeftHand Networks, a market leader in virtualized, scale-out data storage, and served as LeftHand’s Chief Technology Officer. LeftHand Networks was sold to Hewlett Packard in November of 2008. In 2010 John co-founded NexGen Storage, developing the market’s first data storage system architected for flash memory, and served as NexGen’s CEO. Pivot3 acquired NexGen in 2016 and John currently serves as Executive Vice President of Strategy for Pivot3.

Mary Stevens, Director, IT Infrastructure University of Illinois – Urbana Champaign

Mary Stevens has been with the University of Illinois for the past 20 years. She has worked in various IT positions at the university during that time. She was responsible for deploying, maintaining and operating the first firewalls between the campus and the Internet ~17 years ago. She has worked as a UNIX system administrator, network engineer, managing various small teams of network engineers, system admins, DBAs. She is currently the Director of IT Infrastructure for Technology Services at the University of Illinois in Urbana. Her portfolio includes networking, virtualization and storage, database administration, UNIX system administration, data center operations, network cabling installation engineering and documentation, AV engineering, installation of network cabling and fiber both indoor and outside plant.
Mary has B.S. degree in Physics from the University of Illinois as well as and MBA also from the University of Illinois. Interests outside of work include marketing, participating in triathlons, photography, and spending time in the outdoors. 

Annur Sumar, Chief Technology Officer, MaeTech,  Microsoft MVP, Former Vice President of IT D&P

Annur Sumar is a Microsoft Cloud and Datacenter MVP and technology consultant in the areas of Infrastructure Design, Enterprise Content Management, CRM, Microsoft Azure, System Center and Cloud Technologies. Annur is an industry recognized leader and independent speaker around strategic service automation, technology driven process improvements, IT service alignment, engineering best practices and operations management. All of which are targeted in his presentations to helping businesses with complex IT environments lower Total Cost of Ownership and raising Return On Investments. 


Prior to joining a Microsoft Partner Consulting firm, Annur served as a Vice President of Technology for Duff & Phelps. One of the world’s leading independent financial advisory firms serving client needs in the areas of valuation, investment banking, transaction advice, and dispute consulting. During his tenure at Duff & Phelps, Annur worked closely with Microsoft product teams and case study managers in providing invaluable feedback around how businesses such as his were able to benefit from cloud technologies that were molded into business solutions. As a Microsoft MVP and industry expert, Annur brings 10 years of experience to work actively with other MVPs and Microsoft Partners to provide industry insight and strategic direction.