Summerfest Tech 2021
Summerfest Tech 2021, September 8th, 2021 : 8am-7pm
In its fourth year, Summerfest Tech will continue to support the growing tech initiative in the region and the state with an event convening technologists, business leaders, and innovators. Programming will range from keynotes and breakouts focused on creating a tech town and diversity, equity, and inclusion. Programming will appeal to all audiences in the corporate business, startup, investment, and nonprofit tech communities. All programming accessible virtually, but with an in-person component in the afternoon at Johnson Controls World Sound Stage at Henry Maier Festival Park.
Please continue to check back as the full schedule comes together!
Pitch Competition Application
Check out past Summerfest Tech winner's success stories.
To get involved or or sponsor this event please contact SummerfestTech@summerfest.com
Senior Vice President, Corporate Strategies
Dennis Hoffman leads the Corporate Strategy Office at Dell Technologies. In this role, Mr. Hoffman is responsible for the execution of Dell Technologies’ strategic management process, development of the overarching corporate strategy and coordination of the company’s strategically-aligned businesses. He also oversees Dell Technologies’ corporate consulting organization and leads select strategic programs and partnerships.
Mr. Hoffman is a 25-year veteran of the high-technology industry. Prior to his current role, he was responsible for strategic planning and programs at EMC. Before that, he was responsible for launching EMC’s Virtual Computing Environment coalition with Cisco and VMware to help organizations around the world capture the promise and benefits of converged infrastructure platforms. He was previously responsible for the professional development, productivity and technical excellence of EMC’s global presales organization, as well as the performance of EMC’s Education Services offering and organization.
Mr. Hoffman led the team at EMC that developed and initiated the execution of the company’s information security strategy, which resulted in the acquisition of RSA Security and several other security companies. While at RSA, he was responsible for the strategy development, execution and financial performance of RSA’s Data Security Business Unit, as well as strategic planning, strategic partnerships and business development for the RSA Division as a whole. In his first role at the company, he led product marketing for EMC Software Group.
Earlier in his career, Mr. Hoffman served as CEO and Co-founder of Storigen Systems, a pioneering developer of distributed storage networking software that was acquired by EMC in October 2003. Mr. Hoffman also spent six years at Avid Technology where he was responsible for the marketing and business development of its storage and networking products, and he has held strategy consulting and engineering roles at companies including Marakon Associates, Eastman Kodak and Polaroid Corporation.
Mr. Hoffman graduated from Union College with a B.S. in Electrical Engineering and holds an MBA from Harvard University.
Two-time Grammy-nominated producer/DJ Steve Aoki today stands as one of the most successful American cross-genre artists, solidified via his numerous releases, multiple awards, billions of music and video streams and innovative cross-platform projects.
At the core of it all, Aoki is a visionary, a road he’s traveled since the humble beginnings of Dim Mak Records, the trendsetting record label, events/lifestyle company and apparel line he founded in 1996. For over two decades, Dim Mak Records has remained one of the leading independent record labels in modern music, having served as the launch pad for global acts like The Chainsmokers, Bloc Party, The Bloody Beetroots, The Gossip and The Kills, among many others. In 2014, Dim Mak unveiled its 500th release, followed by its 20-year anniversary in 2016. Today, the label counts more than 1,000 official releases from the biggest acts and most buzzing newcomers across EDM, indie rock, hip-hop and beyond.
That same enterprising mentality now drives Aoki’s ambitious Neon Future series (released via Ultra Music/Dim Mak), an ongoing thread of connected semi-concept albums that delve into Aoki’s deep interest in futurism through technology and explores timely themes of singularity, biotechnology, electronic immortality and the symbiotic relationship between man and machine. Officially launched in 2014 with the inaugural installment, Neon Future I (certified gold by the RIAA), followed by Neon Future II (2015), the series features high-profile collaborations with artists from across multiple genres including will.i.am, Linkin Park, Snoop Dogg, Fall Out Boy and others, as well as leading figures in pop culture and technology including Google’s Director of Engineering Ray Kurzweil, theoretical physicist and Nobel laureate Kip Thorne and director/producer J.J. Abrams. Originally conceived as a futuristic concept series, Neon Future is Aoki’s most pop-driven creative output to date. An innovative multiplatform approach, the Neon Future series fully encompasses all of Aoki’s multimedia properties, from his music, videos and social media all the way through the albums’ artwork, which depict Aoki in various stages of his physical transformation from man to machine.
“Neon Future focuses on where we are going with our technology, our society, our humanity, our culture — essentially, an idyllic utopian vision of the future,” Aoki says. “I started seeing the concept of science fiction becoming science fact. I wanted to explore all that in my music with a scientific conversation, so I created the idea of Neon Future. This is my version of having this conversation with the world.”
The Neon Future series now enters its final chapters with Neon Future III and Neon Future IV, scheduled for release November 2018 and Spring 2019, respectively, on Ultra Music/Dim Mak. The two concluding albums include confirmed collaborations with Blink-182, via their long-awaited collaboration “Why Are We So Broken”; Mike Posner, on the introspective “A Lover and a Memory”; and EDM star Nicky Romero on “Be Somebody,” featuring Kiiara.
Aoki is renowned for his adventurous attitude toward genre-defying collaborations, which has seen him join forces with A-listers like Migos and Daddy Yankee, among many others, as well as rising up-and-comers alike. In 2016, Aoki enlisted One Direction’s Louis Tomlinson for the global hit “Just Hold On,” which they performed together on the series finale of The X Factor in the UK. Debuting at #1 in more than 40 countries, the track has since gone gold or platinum in 18 countries. Elsewhere, he’s collaborated with rap star Desiigner on his remix of the BTS track “MIC Drop,” which became the highest-charting song by a K-pop group in US history and the first to go gold, as well as Fifth Harmony’s Lauren Jauregui for his track “All Night,” which hit #1 on the iTunes dance chart. In 2018, Aoki released the Spanish-language track “Azukita,” featuring an all-star cast of Latin pop legends: Daddy Yankee, Play-N-Skillz, and Elvis Crespo, all of whom joined him for a live performance on the main stage of Ultra Music Festival.
As a solo artist, Aoki boasts a lauded discography that also includes: Wonderland (2012), his debut solo album, which garnered him his first-ever Grammy nomination for Best Dance/Electronica Album; Neon Future I (2014) and Neon Future II (2015); and his most recent album, Steve Aoki Presents Kolony (2017). Debuting at #1 on the iTunes Dance Albums charts, Kolony sees Aoki fully crossing into the hip-hop realm via collaborations with top rap and R&B acts including Lil Uzi Vert, Lil Yachty, Migos, 2 Chainz, Gucci Mane, iLoveMakonnen, T Pain and more. Collectively, Aoki’s music has amassed 1.5 billion streams on Spotify, with an additional 2 billion music streams on YouTube.
In addition to multiple EPs, singles, and remixes, Aoki’s 2016 Netflix Originals documentary film I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead captures his career to date and chronicles his family upbringing, personal life and long-winding career from a scrappy entrepreneur to mainstage superstar. Premiering to a sold-out audience at Tribeca Film Festival, the film garnered Aoki’s second Grammy nomination in 2016 for Best Music Film and has been globally released in more than 190 countries.
Recognized by Forbes as one of the top 5 World’s Highest-Paid DJs of 2018 and the World’s Hardest-Working DJ, Aoki is “one of the most in-demand entertainers in the world” (Billboard), counting over 250 tour dates per year and officially holding the Guinness World Record as the “Most Traveled Musician in a Single Calendar Year” (2012). In addition to multiple headlining tours, he’s performed at nearly every top festival around the world including Coachella, Ultra Music Festival, Lollapalooza, Fuji Rock Festival, Tomorrowland, Electric Daisy Carnival and more. He’s also remained a leading figure in DJ Mag’s coveted Top 100 DJs annual poll, ranking in the Top 10 consecutively over the last five years.
Beyond music, Aoki is also a fashion designer/entrepreneur and philanthropist. In addition to collaborations with major fashion and lifestyle brands like Converse and Bathing Ape, Aoki debuted his very own Dim Mak Collection streetwear line in 2016, which he later presented at New York Fashion Week in 2017. He is also a global ambassador for several international brands including ASICS and Diesel. In 2012, he founded THE AOKI FOUNDATION, which primarily supports organizations in the brain science and research areas and has donated over $500,000 to date.
As an impressionable youth, Marcus Lemonis read the description of Entrepreneur to his mother from the dictionary while working on a school project, which inspired him to challenge himself and make his dreamscome true. His humble beginnings and journey through life represent the heart and soul of what true entrepreneurism is. Although he was not born in America, he is proud to be living the American Dream through hard work, determination and believing. Those who have had the chance to hear his story through his moving speaking engagements would say that he is humble, down to earth and 100 percent brutally honest.
A past nominee for the 2018 Critic’s Choice Award for Best Structured Reality Series for his work on CNBC’s The Profit, Marcus lends his business expertise to struggling businesses in various industries across the country while using his famous People-Process-Product principle. Through his 3P mantra, he analyzes every business by the quality people, whether they have an excellent and relevant product, and the best possible process for creating, delivering, and selling that product. While many people frequently call him the “business turnaround king,” he will be the first to say that he really helps people with tough love so they can use the experience to inevitably succeed.
Marcus was born in war-torn Beirut, Lebanon in 1973; and, at nine months old, was adopted by a couple living in Miami, FL. As a young child, he was exposed to positive and prosperous business values at his family-owned auto dealership. His entrepreneurial spirit bloomed at age 12 while attending Epiphany Catholic School, when he started a lawn mowing service to generate money for a candy business while enlisting his friends for their help. He then graduated from Christopher Columbus High School and moved to Milwaukee, WI to attend Marquette University, where he studied Political Science, Criminology and Economics.
It was a conversation with family friend and former Chrysler CEO, Lee Iacocca, who advised him to get into the camping and RV business, which put him on the path to eventual chairmanship at America’s #1 source for RVs, camping accessories, RV maintenance and repair: Camping World.
Lemonis was recognized for having “more impact on the industry than any single individual or company in recent memory as an agent of change and retail consolidation,” when RV Business Magazine named him their 2007 Newsmaker of the Year. Ten years later he became 2017 RV Business Newsmaker of the Year for “evolving into one of the most transformational characters in the U.S. recreational vehicle industry, having built up Camping World’s dealer network to some 135 company-owned RV stores in 36 states retailing RV’s, parts and accessories, emergency road service, insurance and other services as America’s No. 1 RV dealer in terms of sheer sales volume.” In addition, Crain’s Chicago Business featured him in their 2005 edition of “40 under 40,” and in 2008, Ernst & Young named him Entrepreneur of the Year.
Prior to The Profit, he appeared on NBC’s Celebrity Apprentice in 2011 and 2012, and was also featured on ABC’s television show, Secret Millionaire in 2012.
With multiple ventures on his resume, Marcus can be seen sharing his knowledge through numerous business and entertainment television programs, and is also regarded as one of the most sought-after industry experts and keynote speakers in the small business sector today.
Marcus drives results through collaborations, partnerships and relationships. His advice for aspiring entrepreneurs is simple: know your numbers, trust the process and remember that he’s 100 percent IN CHARGE!
Sudhi Sinha is the vice president and general manager of Digital Solutions at Johnson Controls, focusing on bringing value to customers by reducing costs, minimizing risk and failures, and improving the comfort, health and safety of buildings and its occupants. Through his leadership, Sudhi helps create and commercialize new data-enabled and Internet of Things (IoT) offerings. He has full P&L responsibilities for the business including sales, operations, product management, marketing and technology development functions. In his more than 20 years of experience in business management and engineering, Sudhi has achieved several granted and pending patents in smart building technologies, and has published two books on big data and IoT. Sudhi lives in Milwaukee, Wis., U.S. and holds a bachelor’s degree in Engineering and Production Engineering from Jadavpur University, India.
Dr. Kris Ropella
Dr. Kristina (Kris) Ropella is Opus Dean of the Opus College of Engineering and professor of biomedical engineering at Marquette University. She joined the biomedical engineering faculty at Marquette in 1990 and served as the chair of the Department of Biomedical Engineering from 2004 to 2013, when she was named the executive associate dean. Ropella assumed the permanent role of Opus Dean in 2015. In these leadership roles, Ropella provides vision and leads strategic planning and implementation, creation of academic programs, engagement with industry, government and other academic institutions, fundraising, and community outreach.
Ropella’s research expertise is in biosignal processing and medical imaging for diagnostic medical devices. Her early research focused on detection of abnormal heart rhythms for implantable defibrillators and ECG monitors. Currently, she is collaborating with neuroscientists and physicians at the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW) to develop clinical applications of functional magnetic resonance imaging. Her research has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, Department of Education, The Ralph and Marion Falk Medical Research Trust, and the Whitaker Foundation.
Ropella also created and led a number of innovative educational programs, including the Joint Functional Imaging Ph.D. program with MCW, a new biocomputer engineering major at Marquette, a GAANN Graduate Fellowship Program in Functional Imaging, and an NSF-sponsored summer undergraduate research program. She is also the founder and faculty director of Engineers in the Lead , a three-year curricular leadership development program that offers undergraduate students the opportunity to build on their technical skills and develop their capacity to lead people and teams.
Ropella was named the Wisconsin U.S. Professor of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for Advancement and Support for Education (2007). She has twice received the college’s Outstanding Teacher Award (1994 and 2002) and received the university’s Robert and Mary Gettel Faculty Award for Teaching Excellence (2002). Among other honors, she was the recipient of the Milwaukee Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 (2000) and Women of Influence (2008) awards; STEM Forward’s Engineer of the Year award (2016); and the Kern Family Foundation’s Outstanding Dean award (2016).
Ropella is a fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering, having recently served on its board of directors. She has also served on the board of directors for the Biomedical Engineering Society, the Council of Chairs in Biomedical Engineering, and the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. Ropella served on external review panels for the Institute of International Education, the AAAS, the National Institutes of Health, the Coulter Foundation, and the US Professors Program. She is a member of the Board of Trustees for the Medical College of Wisconsin, the Board of Directors at Milwaukee’s Augustine Prep and the Cristo Rey Jesuit Governance Board.
She received her bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering from Marquette University and her master’s and doctoral degrees in biomedical engineering from Northwestern University.
Lisa Roy began her career 24 years ago with Johnson Controls and currently serves as the Vice President of Commercial Sales at Johnson Controls. In her role, she is responsible for the profitable growth of the direct channel business for Johnson Controls Building Technologies and Solutions Group in North America. This includes all lines of business, including systems, services and energy performance contracting.
Justin Webb is co-chair of Godfrey & Kahn’s Data Privacy & Cybersecurity Practice Group. He holds the Certified Information Privacy Professional/US (CIPP/US) certification from the International Association of Privacy Professionals.
Justin helps clients navigate the legal issues that arise from technology and data in an increasingly digital world, with a specific focus on cybersecurity and data privacy matters. His work includes:
- Compliance with state, federal and international privacy laws, including the General Data Protection Regulation 2016/679 (EU) (GDPR), the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), and the New York Department of Financial Services Cybersecurity Regulation
- Data breach response and remediation
- Data breach prevention
- · Drafting, reviewing and consulting on written information security programs, incident response plans, and subsidiary information technology and security standards and policies
- Establishing data privacy programs, including drafting, reviewing and consulting on data privacy notices and policies, governance, and information handling
- Cybersecurity and data privacy due diligence in mergers and acquisitions
- Litigation and regulatory matters concerning cybersecurity and data privacy
- Reviewing and negotiating cyber liability insurance policies
- Negotiating myriad technology contracts, including XaaS, software development, outsourcing, hosting, and technology implementation
Justin also serves as Godfrey & Kahn’s Chief Information Security Officer. In this role, Justin oversees the firm’s information security program, reviews policies and procedures, assesses risk and implements strategic software and processes to further protect data.
Vice President Operations , Data Holdings Data Centers
Mr. England brings nearly 25 years of experience in the Information Technology, Critical Facilities, Operations and Management arena. Mr. England is passionately involved in all aspects of the business including operations of multiple data centers, Security, compliance with SSAE 16 controls, PCI, HIPAA-Hitech, Leading pre- and post-sales direction, initiatives, and support. Working closely with business partners and the executive team on executing all efforts related to operation, sales, marketing, operations, technical, and business directives.
PARAGON DEVELOPMENT SYSTEMS
Vice President Service Operations – Brookfield, WI
Mr. England joined PDS with a Primary Goal to Design and Build the PDS Cloud Extension Centers, along with Service Definition and creation to be offered through the extension of this business. Mr. England also provided P&L responsibility, Leadership and Operational responsibilities, direction and oversight to the organization’s technology, service support, and consulting divisions
KOHLS DEPARTMENT STORES
Director Information Technology, Menomonee Falls, WI
Mr. England provided strategic leadership for this $20 billion retailer, experiencing growth from 100 stores to 1200 during his tenure. Partnered with several firms to build Data Centers, Credit and Call Centers, Fulfillment Centers, Distribution Centers, NYDC Times Square Design Center, and Network Operation Centers. Mr. England was instrumental in the design and build of the Kohl’s E-Commerce / Multi Channel infrastructure teams, building a site that was in the top 5 most visited sites during FY2010.
VISUAL SERVICES INC – MARKETING & ADVERTISING
Operations Management - Bloomfield Hills MI
Managed a Multi-Site team responsible primarily for the execution of I.T. production, sales support, and quality management supporting the “Big 5 Automakers“ located in Southeast Michigan.
EDS – ELECTRONIC DATA SYSTEMS
I.T. Technical Project Management - Warren MI
Prior to joining Data Holdings Mr. England had partnered with many in the design and implementation of several fault tolerant, scalable I.T. infrastructure systems, data centers, and sites.
Mr. England served as a Director at Large for Hewlett Packard’s NonStop Computing Users Group (ITUG) and remains active in the I.T. Executive Community.
Mr. England is a skilled Executive Leader, project manager, engineering team leader, and coach that is able to build and develop highly performing, focused disciplined teams that consistently deliver superior results
Tom Kaczmarek joined Marquette University in 2010 to become the Director of the MS in Computing program in the department of Mathematics, Statistics, and Computer Science. He has expanded the curriculum to include professional best practices and topics such as cybersecurity and data analytics. He is the founding Director of the Center for Information Assurance and Cyber Defense and the interim Co-Director for the Northwestern Mutual Data Science Institute, a partnership between UWM, Marquette University, and Northwestern Mutual. Prior to his current role, Tom was an executive at General Motors responsible for various business and IT operations. He created a global enterprise architecture for manufacturing engineering, directed plant floor IT architecture, directed service delivery for identity and access management, created a software engineering processes group (SEPG), managed supplier relations, directed product and process quality assurance, and conducted CMMI related activities. Prior to work at GM, Tom managed an expert system consulting operation and performed DARPA funded research on knowledge representation at the University of Southern California. He received his PhD degree in computer sciences from the University of Pennsylvania and a BS in math from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.
Mary T. Bunzel
As the Manufacturing Industry Solutions Leader at Intel, Ms. Bunzel is responsible for the growth of advanced technology in global manufacturing. She has spent the last 30 years helping manufacturers optimize maintenance and production operations levering the science of asset reliability and best practices.