IT Leadership SummIT Keynote Speaker
Leonard Brody
Entrepreneur, Venture Capitalist, Author and Media Visionary
Co-Founder and Executive Chair, Creative Labs (CAA)
Leonard has recently been named one of top 30 management thinkers in the world. He has also been called, “a leader of the new world order”. He is an award winning entrepreneur, venture capitalist, bestselling author and a 2 time Emmy nominated media visionary. Leonard has helped in raising hundreds of millions in capital for startup companies, been through taking a company to a 6 Billion market cap IPO
and has been involved in the founding and successful exit of numerous companies to date. After selling his company in 2009, Leonard became the President of the Innovation and Digital Group for the Anschutz Company, one of the largest live sport and entertainment businesses in the world. The company owns assets such as the O2 Arena in London and Staples Center in LA; sports teams like the Los Angeles Lakers, Los Angeles Galaxy and the Los Angeles Kings, and today, is one of the premiere concert promotion businesses in the world seating hundreds of millions of people a year.

Currently, Leonard is the Co-Founder and Executive Chairman of Creative Labs, a joint venture with CAA (Creative Artists Agency in LA), the largest sports and entertainment agency in the world, often called “Hollywood’s Secret Society”. Leonard oversees the building of new ventures for some of the most well known celebrities and political leaders in the world.

He is also one of the proud owners of the professional soccer team Coventry City in England.

Currently, Leonard is authoring a new book in partnership with Forbes Magazine, entitled, “The Great Re:Write” based on the successful documentary series Leonard and Forbes produced which has already garnered an audience of over 6 million in the last year.

Leonard holds an Honours Bachelor of Arts from Queens University, a law degree from Osgoode Hall and is a graduate of the Private Equity Program at the Harvard Business School.
 
Lisa Davis
VP and GM, Digital Transformation and Scale Solutions
Intel Corporation
Lisa Davis is vice president and general manager for Digital Transformation & Scale Solutions in Intel Corporation’s, Enterprise and Government Data Center Group where she is responsible for growing Intel’s data center business and working alongside enterprise and government CIOs to create IT transformation strategies for their organizations.

Lisa joined the Data Center Group from Intel’s IT Group where she led and developed the IT architecture and integrated technology solutions supporting Intel’s world-class global supply chain, HR, Finance, and M&A IT.

Davis is a three-time Chief Information Officer and has led four technology transformations over the course of her 30-year career in technology. Prior to Intel, Davis served as Chief Information Officer (CIO) at Georgetown University, and held a variety of technology leadership roles in her 26-year career in the Federal Government. As a member of the Senior Executive Service she was the CIO of the U.S. Marshals Service in the Department of Justice, as well as CIO of the Counterintelligence Field Activity in the Department of Defense.
Throughout her 30-year career in technology, Lisa has been a champion for women in technology and leadership – channeling that passion into leading professional development initiatives for women. She serves on the board of Mirantis, as well as the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and a number of non-profit boards.

Lisa holds a bachelor's degree in computer engineering from Syracuse University, and a master's degree in human resources management from Golden Gate University, and is also a Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP). Find her on twitter @LisaM_Davis or LinkedIn.
 
Keren Elazari
Cyber Security Analyst, Author & Researcher
Keren Elazari is an internationally acclaimed security researcher, author and strategic analyst, with years of experience in the international cyber security industry. Since 2000, Keren has worked with leading Israeli security firms, government organizations, Big 4 firms, advised Fortune 500 and groundbreaking startup companies, helping global organizations navigate complex cyber security issues.
 
Elazari’s independent research work and writing about emerging security issues has been featured by Scientific American, WIRED, and she is a frequent speaker and commentator in international events and in the media. Ms. Elazari holds an MA in Security Studies from the prestigious Security & Technology workshop at Tel Aviv University – where she is a senior researcher with the Balvatnik Interdisciplinary Cyber Research Center, focusing on the complex relationships between hackers, industry and government. Elazari is also a Security Fellow and faculty member with Singularity University, a private future-forward think tank.
 
In 2014, Keren became the first Israeli woman to speak at the annual TED conference. Keren’s TED talk has been viewed by millions online, translated to 27 languages and selected for TED’s list of ‘Most Powerful Ideas in 2014’ and Inc.com’s list of ‘Top TED Talks of 2014’.
 
Her collaborative book with 8 leading women, Women in Tech, was published by Penguin USA in March 2016 and became an Amazon bestseller. In 2016, Keren founded Israel’s largest security community event, BSidesTLV, part of the global Security BSides movement. In July 2017, Keren was selected by Forbes as one of Israel’s “most influential women” and featured on the cover of Forbes Israel.
 
Pat Gelsinger
CEO
VMware
Pat Gelsinger has been serving as CEO of VMware since September 2012, doubling the size of the company during his tenure. He brings almost 40 years of technology and leadership experience.

Before joining VMware, Gelsinger led EMC's Information Infrastructure Products business as president and COO. A respected IT industry veteran, he was at Intel for 30 years becoming the company’s first CTO and driving the creation of key industry technologies including USB and Wi-Fi. He led Intel to be the dominant supplier of the microprocessor – while in the significant role as the architect of the original 80486 processor.

Gelsinger earned a master's degree from Stanford University in 1985, his bachelor's degree from Santa Clara University in 1983 (magna cum laude), and an associate degree from Lincoln Technical Institute in 1979, all in electrical engineering. In 2008, he was named a Fellow of the IEEE and that same year awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Letters from William Jessup University. He holds seven patents in the areas of VLSI design, computer architecture and communications.
 
Christine Leahy
CEO
CDW
Christine A. Leahy is chief executive officer of CDW. Leahy is responsible for the strategic direction and performance of the company as well as leading the senior management team.

Leahy has held numerous roles at CDW, most recently serving as chief revenue officer, where she was responsible for all customer-facing units of the company including its corporate, public, small business, international and integrated technology solutions organizations. Prior to that role, Leahy was senior vice president, international, where she led the development of the company’s international strategy, including the acquisition of Kelway, now CDW UK, and was responsible for the performance of its international business. Leahy also acted as chief legal officer. Prior to joining CDW in 2002 as the company’s first general counsel, Leahy was a corporate partner in the Chicago office of Sidley Austin, an international business law firm.

Leahy earned a bachelor’s degree from Brown University and a J.D. from Boston College Law School. She completed the CEO Perspectives Program at Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University, as well as the Women’s Director Development Program at Kellogg. Leahy is past chair of the board of trustees of Children’s Home and Aid. She is also a member of the Economic Club of Chicago and The Chicago Network. In addition, Leahy is a founder and a sponsor of CDW’s Women’s Opportunity Network, a business resource group that actively and strategically supports women’s advancement at CDW.
 
Gary Steele
CEO
Proofpoint
Mr. Steele currently serves as chief executive officer of Proofpoint, Inc. and oversees corporate strategy and direction.

As the founding CEO, Mr. Steele’s 15+ years of leadership has spanned the company’s successful 2012 IPO and 50+ consecutive quarters of growth at a 32% compound annual growth rate. With more than 30 years of enterprise software experience, he leads a global cybersecurity workforce of more than 1500 employees to ensure organizations and their users are protected across email, mobile and social media communication channels. Mr. Steele is recognized as a leading global cybersecurity expert and is a frequent commentator on cybersecurity issues for CBNC, CNBC Europe, Fox Business News, and Bloomberg News.

Before joining Proofpoint, Mr. Steele served as the CEO of Portera, a SaaS applications company delivering solutions for the professional services industry. Under his leadership, Portera raised more than $100M in capital and grew the business from its initial concept to $20M in revenue. Prior to Portera, Mr. Steele served as the vice president and general manager of the Middleware and Data Warehousing Product Group at Sybase, Inc., an organization of more than 350 people, spanning four geographies and generating $150M in revenue. In this capacity, he initiated and spearheaded all new Internet projects targeted at the enterprise. His prior experience includes business development, marketing, and engineering roles at Sun Microsystems and Hewlett-Packard.

Mr. Steele is a member of the board of directors for Vonage and Malwarebytes, and he holds a Bachelor of Science degree in computer science from Washington State University.
 
IT Leadership SummIT Speakers
Shobhana Ahluwalia
Head of Information Technology
Uber Technologies
Shobhana Ahluwalia is the Head of Information Technology at Uber Technologies, responsible for providing global IT operations and services support for an exploding business. She leads both the strategic and tactical support for Uber worldwide corporate infrastructure components, network and telecommunications, enterprise applications, endpoints, and 24/7 internal service desk.

Prior to Uber, Shobhana served as Vice President of Information Technology at Rocket Fuel, where she created and scaled a global IT team to support Rocket Fuel’s rapid business growth. Until 2013, Shobhana held various roles at CBS, including as Vice President of Enterprise Resource Planning and Information Technology, where she led internal technology for all ten of CBS’s business units including Network, CBS Studios, and Simon & Schuster.

Shobhana holds an MBA with a double major in Strategy and Finance from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business and a Bachelor of Computer Science in Engineering.

During her downtime, she is an avid peloton biker, enjoys long hikes, and hopes to read two good books every month.
 
Sai Balabhadrapatruni
Head of Product Marketing
Palo Alto Networks
Sai is head of product marketing for public cloud security at Palo Alto Networks. He has 15+ years of experience in enterprise security, data-networking/telecom and cloud with broad business knowledge and expertise in product marketing, product line management, and software/cloud architecture. He holds B.E and M.S degrees in computer science and engineering.
 
Mary Cecola
CTO
Ariel Investments
Mary joined Ariel in 2019 and is responsible for establishing and executing innovative firm-wide technology strategies. As an accomplished change agent with a diverse range of expertise, she works with the firm’s key executives to identify technological solutions that can be leveraged to drive business opportunities and organizational goals. In this capacity, she also manages all aspects of Ariel’s technology infrastructure and oversees the firm’s technology team as well as its IT vendor relationships. Prior to Ariel, Mary worked for Antares Capital, a provider of middle market private equity-backed transactions, where she served as the Chief Information Officer. She formerly held a variety of C-suite technology positions with FHLB Des Moines and Deutsche Bank, including Chief Business Technology Officer and Global Chief Information Officer, Asset Management, respectively. Mary graduated with a BS in Political Science and a MS in Computer Science from Northern Illinois University, and completed the Executive Leadership Program through the London Business School.
 
David Chapman
VP, Sales
CDW UK
With over 20 years of experience, David is responsible for the performance goals and strategic direction of the CDW UK sales organisation. He joined CDW in 1999 and has a diverse background spanning roles with increasing levels of responsibility leading public sector and commercial sales teams.

David is a graduate of Indiana University Kelley School of Business where he earned a B.S. in Marketing.
 
Brad Cline
Director, IT
SolarWinds
Brad Cline was drawn to technology at a young age, his early passions included everything from rebuilding defunct Atari’s to optimizing boot sequences on the parents Tandy. Following that passion has led to a career of over 20 years in the tech industry, from a start in building Token Ring networks, a path through Virtualization and now a charge into the Cloud and Software-Defined present, every day in tech brings a new challenge. He is currently the Director of Enterprise Platforms and Operations, supporting SolarWinds global IT operations and focused on aligning the next wave of technology to drive the business vision. Most recent challenges cover a global SDWAN implementation, a complete datacenter redesign utilizing HCI and Cloud adjacency and a migration from on-prem to the Cloud for all user facing collaboration tools. Brad thrives on bridging the gap that often exists between the business direction and IT implementation. His free time is focused on being a husband, wrangling a dog pack and restoring classic cars.
 
Adam Dennison
Publisher, CIO; SVP/General Manager
IDG Events
Adam Dennison brings more than 15 years of media sales experience to his role as Senior Vice President and Publisher, leading the integrated sales and events teams for CIO, CITEworld, Computerworld and Network World. In this role, Dennison oversees the brands go-to-market strategies, including brand positioning, market research and creating turnkey solutions for his clients. He also sits on the Executive Committee for IDG Enterprise. Dennison joined IDG in 2007 as National Sales Director for the Custom Solutions Group where he excelled in providing innovative marketing services.

A popular moderator, speaker and columnist, Dennison possesses an in-depth knowledge of emerging technologies and key strategies for marketing to IT decision-makers. These insights are shared in his regular CIO magazine column. Additionally, Dennison has recently spoken at several conferences and private events for companies including Avaya, Citrix, Dropbox, Samsung and VMware.

Prior to joining IDG, Dennison spent 6 years in IT media sales at CMP’s flagship brands InformationWeek and CRN. Dennison also held media sales roles at Lawyer’s Weekly and American Sports Media.

Dennison is a graduate of Syracuse University in New York with a B.A. in International Relations.
 
Michael Lambert
CTO; Director of Research & Development
Wintrust Financial Corporation
Michael Lambert joined Wintrust Financial Corporation in April 2007.  Michael leads the new Research and Development department for Wintrust Technology.  Prior to this new role, Michael oversaw the daily operations for technology, leading the Infrastructure and Operations teams that encompass data centers, servers, storage, virtualization, networking, telephony, end user and desktop support. 

Prior to Wintrust, Michael spent 11 years at Open Solutions/BISYS, Inc. in multiple leadership roles, most recently as the Director of Operations.  In this role he was responsible with the oversight of a 7x24 online/real time financial data processing environment along with a national transmission department, processing over 1000 files daily.  Michael started working in the financial industry running data processing for Algonquin State Bank, a small community bank, where he worked for over 4 years. 

Michael has a BS in Business Management, an AS in Applied Computer Science and is ITIL v3 Certified.  He is a board member on the Northern Kane Education Corporation Board of Directors and an active basketball coach for girls 8th grade and high school feeder programs.
 
Christopher Leach
Senior CISO/CSO Advisor
Cisco
Christopher Leach is currently is a Senior CISO/CSO Advisor for Cisco in the Americas.  Chris brings his considerable years (25+) of experience in Cyber and InfoSec to advise Cisco’s strategic clients on charting their Cyber Security Strategy.

Chris has had a career spanning topics from technology risk analysis, operations, to strategy and financial controls which have included senior management, consulting and entrepreneurial experiences. Most recently he was the interim CISO at a financial services company, a client of his firm, the CISO Toolbox.  Previous experience includes working with other CISOs, CTOs, CIOs on security strategies, security mega trends and emerging threats at Hewlett Packard and Hewlett Packard Enterprise.
 
Previous to his work at HP we was a CISO for a large outsourcing company acquired by Xerox, Affiliated Computer Services in Dallas; and was the CISO for BankOne/JPMC in New York and First Horizon National Corp in Memphis, TN. 
 
He has deep operational experience globally and has been on the forefront of Operations, monitoring and incident response of client networks and infrastructure. 

A recognized thought leader and sought-after professional, he has maintained strong relationships with other security professionals, providers and vendors. He views security as a partner with the business and understands that risk can be controlled but never fully eliminated and therefore approaches security from a risk-based model.
 
Outside the office he can be found riding a horse or on a trail ride in the mountains.  If not there – check underwater where he may be found scuba diving among some awesome coral reefs. 
 
Kristin Malek
Senior Manager, Supplier Diversity
CDW
Kristin Malek serves as the Senior Manager of Supplier Diversity at CDW. In this capacity, she drives CDW’s strategies to achieve supplier diversity objectives. She is responsible for CDW’s $2+ Billion Dollar annual Supplier Diversity spend initiatives. Kristin is the architect of the CDW’s diverse supply chain which today is defined as more than 1100+ suppliers that serve the needs and offers solutions to CDW and their customers.

She is a member of the National Minority Supplier Diversity Council ( NMSDC) , Board Member of the Chicago Minority Supplier Diversity Council,  Women's Business Enterprise National Council, National LGBT Chamber of Commerce, National Veteran-Owned Business Association (NaVOBA) and TIG ( Technology Industry Group ), sharing her voice and best practices on inclusive business strategies.
 
Under Kristin’s leadership at CDW; the supplier diversity program at CDW has been named a finalist for Corporation of the Year with NMSDC in 2018 and 2019. In 2019, the supplier diversity program was named the Best of the Best Supplier Diversity Programs for veteran owned businesses.
 
Earlier this year, Kristin was named one of Top 25 Women in Power Impacting Diversity. Under Kristin’s leadership, in October, CDW was inducted into the prestigious Billion Dollar Roundtable.
 
 
 
Aletha Noonan
VP, Central Region
CDW
Aletha Noonan is vice president of the Central region for CDW. Noonan is responsible for the performance goals, strategic direction, business initiatives and talent development of the Central region.

Noonan joined CDW in 1994 as an account manager and was a member of CDW’s first outbound sales team. She quickly rose into sales management and advanced through a variety of leadership positions with increasing responsibility. In 2000, Noonan was promoted to director of corporate sales, where she was one of the regional leaders in the company’s first branch sales office in downtown Chicago. In 2004, Noonan became director of sales operations, where she was responsible for key company sales initiatives, including the hiring and talent development of all CDW sales managers for both CDW and CDW Government, a wholly owned subsidiary of CDW. In 2005, Noonan chose to stay home to care for her children. Prior to returning to CDW in November 2013 as vice president of higher education sales, Noonan served for three years as a national partner sales executive at Microsoft.

Noonan earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Ohio University. She serves on the board of directors for the YWCA of Metropolitan Chicago and the Chicago Urban League. Additionally, Noonan serves on the board of directors for CDW’s Women’s Opportunity Network.
 
Elliott Peterson
SVP, Global IT
Advantage Solutions
Elliott Peterson is our new Vice President of Infrastructure and DevOps bringing more than 20 years of experience in the aerospace, retail, entertainment, and logistics industries. Prior to Advantage, Elliott was at such places as NASA at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, HireRight, Westfield, and PaperlinX, where he oversaw several global information technology transformation initiatives. 
 
In addition to rebuilding several global IT organizations Elliott also has worked with venture capital firms in building several startups such as Logical Apps, Red Digital Cinema and Beats by Dre.  Elliott brings executive level experience that focuses on strategy, transformation, and technology innovation to streamline business processes.  

Elliott holds a Bachelor of Science is Computer Information Systems, a Master of Business Administration, and several technology certifications.
 
Sherri Pipala
Director, Chief Alliances Evangelist
Poly
Sherri joined Polycom in 2008 and has held numerous Sales Leadership roles. She currently leads the Poly Field Alliance Team specifically focused on alignment and joint solutions with Poly’s Strategic Alliances.

Sherri has over 25 years of experience in the communications industry and has led a dynamic sales career marketing and selling solutions and advanced services in the collaboration space primarily focused within the competitive enterprise and global account market landscape. She is a passionate sales leader focused on executive relationships, business development, as well as partner enablement to support the best solution sales engagements.

Sherri brings a “voice from the field” to ensure successful product solutions, marketing and support ultimately driving customer success.
 
Gary Steele
CEO
Proofpoint
Mr. Steele currently serves as chief executive officer of Proofpoint, Inc. and oversees corporate strategy and direction.

As the founding CEO, Mr. Steele’s 15+ years of leadership has spanned the company’s successful 2012 IPO and 50+ consecutive quarters of growth at a 32% compound annual growth rate. With more than 30 years of enterprise software experience, he leads a global cybersecurity workforce of more than 1500 employees to ensure organizations and their users are protected across email, mobile and social media communication channels. Mr. Steele is recognized as a leading global cybersecurity expert and is a frequent commentator on cybersecurity issues for CBNC, CNBC Europe, Fox Business News, and Bloomberg News.

Before joining Proofpoint, Mr. Steele served as the CEO of Portera, a SaaS applications company delivering solutions for the professional services industry. Under his leadership, Portera raised more than $100M in capital and grew the business from its initial concept to $20M in revenue. Prior to Portera, Mr. Steele served as the vice president and general manager of the Middleware and Data Warehousing Product Group at Sybase, Inc., an organization of more than 350 people, spanning four geographies and generating $150M in revenue. In this capacity, he initiated and spearheaded all new Internet projects targeted at the enterprise. His prior experience includes business development, marketing, and engineering roles at Sun Microsystems and Hewlett-Packard.

Mr. Steele is a member of the board of directors for Vonage and Malwarebytes, and he holds a Bachelor of Science degree in computer science from Washington State University.
 
Jesse Wilbur
Interaction Design Director
IA Collaborative
Jesse Wilbur is a digital experience design practice leader at IA Collaborative, with 20+ years of experience leading digital engagements across brands such as Hub International, Target and GE. He focuses on the definition and execution of strategic digital product experiences that answer user needs and deliver business value.
 
Elia Zaitsev
VP, Sales Engineering and Solutions Architecture
CrowdStrike
Elia Zaitsev is CrowdStrike’s Vice President of Sales Engineering and Solutions Architecture for the Americas. He has over a decade of experience working with large enterprises and government agencies to tackle complex technical and security challenges. Lately his focus is on adversary tradecraft, especially “living off the land” techniques. He was the first Sales Engineer at CrowdStrike, and previously worked at IBM, i2, and Northrop Grumman.