John Vaskis — Keynote Speaker
Head of Hardware, Technology, and Design Sales
John manages Indiegogo’s largest sales team that is focused on driving growth in the hardware and technology vertical at Indiegogo.
Director of Research, NAPCO Media
Director of Research for NAPCO Media, heading new research initiative. Develop business strategy and go to market plan together with senior leadership. Design custom research studies for multi-national companies, develop thought leadership and proprietary research for both internal and external use.
Sr. Content Editor, Dealerscope
Patrick McCarthy is a Senior Editor for Dealerscope who covers trends, technologies, and products in the consumer electronic space. Patrick has been a journalist for the six years, working for various publications covering a variety of topics through video, photo, and print in Illinois, St. Louis, Philadelphia, and across the internet.
Editorial Director, Dealerscope
Editorial Director for the CT Lab publishing group at NAPCO Media. Oversees the editorial content strategy and direction for Dealerscope and other related publications. Avid techy and host of the UNBOXED product review series on Dealerscope.
InfoScout has rapidly established the largest and richest source of household purchases by item, brand, category, and channel. By capturing over 200,000 trips daily across all retailers and channels daily, InfoScout in the only OMNICHANNEL panel provider across the categories we deliver insights to, including CPG, Consumer Electronics, and Apparel. InfoScout’s real-world analytics make brands better marketers by providing the industry’s largest, richest & most actionable source of household purchase information, by item, across all retail and eCommerce channels.
NATM Buying Corporation is a national buying co-op representing 12 regional retailers in the appliance and electronics industry. NATM coordinates the buying and merchandising strategies for its members, and provides a forum for the exchange of ideas.
Joel Silver is the President and founder of the Imaging Science Foundation, Inc.,(ISF) which incorporated in 1994 to introduce image quality improving calibration services into HDTVs. There are now over 12 million HDTVs shipped each year under license to the ISF.
Kevin Miller is the owner of ISFTV, a Display Product Development Consulting company to the industry’s leading television and video source manufacturers. ISFTV has also been providing professional calibration services since the inception of the ISF in early 1994. Kevin specializes in home theater design consulting for the end user and full service professional calibration for all types of displays for both the consumer and professional markets.
Vice President of Programs and Partnerships
Tom O’Connell is the Vice President of Programs and Partnerships at Code/Interactive. As a former high school physics & computer science teacher and teacher coach, Tom joined Code/Interactive to build professional development and content coaching programs for computer science teachers. Tom has fostered partnerships and supported teachers with schools and districts nationally as a part of the Computer Science For All Initiative. He is an adjunct professor at the Lehman College Graduate School of Education and a facilitator and teacher coach for Exploring Computer Science. Tom is an advisor to Facebook’s TechStart program, Teach For America’s CS Fellows initiative, and the Out In Tech Youth Program. He is a frequent speaker and panelist at computer science and technology education events
Chairman, Board of Directors
Brian Cohen is the Chairman, Board of Directors of NY Angels. He created iFluence PR a strategic behavioral-based communications consultancy for the new earned influence/social media community. Its focus is on understanding determinant business success factors and using qualitative customer research matched with highly aggressive guerrilla communications techniques to achieve client marketing objectives while providing the greatest financial value possible. He developed Good Cause Communications, the first full-service not-for-profit PR firm designed to meet the needs of struggling non-profits. Brian created and instituted the RPM (Rapid Publicity Marketing) model of strategic communications and started Focus Technology, a Focus Group company that provided qualitative research and beta site utilization services. Before launching TSI, Brian was a founding publisher of Computer Systems News and InformationWeek magazine at CMP Publications.
Former Winner of the Young Innovators Award
Mamadou Diallo, a former winner of the Young Innovators award, is a hackathon guru currently in his first year at Stanford University. He enjoys coding websites and iOS apps especially when his work solves problems that improve people’s lives. Mamadou is also the Co-founder of The Young Hackers, an organization dedicated to connecting and empowering a diverse new generation of programmers. Mamadou really enjoys playing pickup basketball, procrastinating on Youtube, and freestyle rap-battling with his friends. He aspires to work towards alleviating poverty and social injustice everywhere. He will be studying at Stanford University in the fall.
Former Winner of the Young Innovators Award
Emily Post, one of our past Young Innovator winner, has a deep interest in coding and believes that it will play an important part of her life. A student at the Chapin School in NYC, she created an online game that teaches kids about toxins and the environment. The game is called “FindingClover” and she plans to use it to raise awareness about the dangers of pesticides. Coincidentally, she learned that one of the world’s largest games companies, League of Legends, asks all their game creators to take martial arts, because the movements are perfect for game avatars. Since she already has her black belt, she is ahead of the curve.
Sr. Director of K-12 Education
Diane Levitt is the Sr. Director of K-12 Education for Cornell Tech. She drives their engagement with the NYC computing education community, including the Dept. of Education’s CS4All initiative, and works with individual schools to catalyze K-12 computer science. She is responsible for Cornell Tech’s annual conference, To Code and Beyond, convening educators, nonprofit and industry leaders, policymakers and funders to examine best practices and innovative solutions in K-12 computing education.Before joining Cornell Tech, Diane was the Director of Corporate Social Responsibility for Belkin, and philanthropic advisor to Belkin’s founder and CEO. Diane received a Masters degree in Early Childhood Education from Bank Street College, and a Bachelor of Science in Women’s Studies and Anthropology from Barnard College, Columbia University.
Warren Buckleitner is an educational psychologist who reviews children’s interactive media. He’s been a preschool, elementary and college teacher (currently TCNJ’s IMM program). He is the founding editor of Children’s Technology Review (www.childrenstech.com). He speaks at education and library conferences, and contributes content to many books and publications, including a decade of children’s tech coverage for the New York Times. He holds a degree in elementary education from Central Michigan University (Cum Laude), an MA in early childhood education from Pacific Oaks College, and a doctorate in educational psychology from Michigan State University. He serves as a Sr. Advisor to the Breteau Foundation, and coordinates the KAPi prize at CES and the Bologna Ragazzi Digital Prize at the Bologna Children’s Book Fair. In 2000, he started Dust or Magic (www.dustormagic.com) and the Mediatech Foundation (www.mediatech.org), a non-profit community technology center in his town’s library where he serves as a Trustee. He is the father of two daughters, and tries to play trumpet in a Dixie band.
Producer and Project Lead, Large-Scale Event Management
Kerry Goldstein, A native Texan, is passionate about technology and spreading the word about the individuals, companies, and organizations enhancing our lives and work via high-tech solutions. As the Marketing Director for Living in Digital Times, Kerry is responsible for creating the unique identity of the brand’s events and conferences. She brings more than 20 years of strategic marketing, product, and promotion experience to her job including working for a number of education companies including Cambium, The Princeton Review and others.
Former Winner of the Young Innovators Award
Surendra Persaud, a past winner of the Young Innovators award in 2015, is a hackathon enthusiast currently pursuing Computer Science & Political Science at the University at Albany. He emigrated to New York City from Guyana when he was three and has always had an interest in technology. He has organized inclusive events and mentored others through a variety of organizations including The Young Hackers, The Knowledge House and Global Kids. Today, his ambitions lie at the intersection of computer science, politics, and education. Surendra loves to meet new people and recite to them the Hamilton soundtrack. His favorite hobbies are lifting weights, producing films, and dancing.
Managing Director of the Eugene Lang Entrepreneurship Center
Vincent Ponzo is the Managing Director of the Eugene Lang Entrepreneurship Center at Columbia Business School where he leads the team responsible for all entrepreneurship related education, programming, positioning, fundraising and strategic initiatives.Vince serves as an advisor to numerous startups, is a mentor to multiple Columbia Business School students and alumni, and plays an active role in the New York City entrepreneurial ecosystem. Vince previously held client facing executive positions at a wide variety of startups, including leading the build out and growth of General Assembly’s offline education business from its earliest days. Vince has an MBA from Columbia Business School and a BS in finance from Boston College.
Founder and CEO
Robin Raskin has spent the past 30 years exploring what it means to be living in digital times. An author, editor, magazine publisher, blogger, TV and radio personality, and founder of Living in Digital Times, Raskin says she’s never met a media she doesn’t like, and is happiest when she’s looking in awe at the role that technology plays in all of our lives. An early champion of the digital lifestyle, Robin has brought her unique perspective on technology to audiences around the world. Robin is the former editor of PC Magazine and editor in chief of FamilyPC. She served as Vice President at Ziff Davis Publishing, and she was one of the founding advisors at Yahoo! Tech. She has been a columnist for USA Today Online and has authored 6 books about parenting in the digital age. Robin was a regular contributor to CBS News and appeared regularly on CNBC, MSNBC, Lifetime and other networks. She’s served at the National Academy of Science and has testified numerous times in Washington to protect children in the digital age. Today she writes for Mashable and Huffington Post, and serves as the voice of Living in Digital Times as a frequently quoted expert. In 2007, Robin entered into a partnership with the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) to produce conferences and events focusing on lifestyle applications for emerging technologies. From its toe-tipping beginning, Living in Digital Times has grown to encompass six different lifestyle-meets-technology events at the International CES: Kids@Play, MommyTech, HigherEd Tech, Silvers Summit, Digital Health, and FashionWare, She also created and produced The Last Gadget Standing (now in its 14th year) and The Mobile Apps Showdown, both wildly popular events at CES. Robin serves on numerous Boards of Advisors including the CEA Foundation and the Cyclic Vomiting Association.
Robin lives in NYC and the Hudson Valley, with her husband, her three drop-in-now-and-then children, and closets full of obsolete technology.
Tonda Bunge Sellers
For a decade, Tonda Bunge Sellers, President of Digital Kids Conference, has led the toy and entertainment industry in navigating the ever-evolving kids’ digital market. The Digital Kids Conference, co-located with Toy Fair, has become an annual must-attend event and think tank for all those focused on digital products for kids and services for the 21st century family. This year’s conference will focus on the future of connected smart play and feature experts in the fields of app / mobile development, children’s entertainment, and digital media. Tonda has cultivated an intimate event – attracting several hundred brand experts, toy companies and technologists – which allows for engaged discussion, networking and idea sharing to shape the future of the digital kids’ market.
Chief Technology Officer for the City of New York
Miguel Gamiño is the Chief Technology Officer for the City of New York under the leadership of Mayor Bill de Blasio. As CTO, he is charged with two major initiatives: developing a meaningful and innovative Smart City and “Internet of Things” (IoT) strategy in collaboration with City agencies and departments; and leading the City’s Broadband Program with agencies, private industry and academia aimed at fulfilling Mayor de Blasio’s promise to provide every New Yorker and NYC business access to affordable, reliable, high-speed broadband service in all of New York by 2025. Prior to NYC, Mr. Gamiño served as the City Chief Information Officer and Executive Director of the Department of Technology for the City and County of San Francisco. His team and colleagues brought “broadband” to the mainstream conversation and charted the course for a connected city of the future. As an industry technologist, Mr. Gamiño participates in thought-leadership conversations with global colleagues, emphasizing the significance of pervasive broadband connectivity and the value of disrupting civic services through digital transformation. He is a proud recipient of 2017 HITEC 100, 2016 State IT Executive of the Year, 2016 Top 25 Doers, Dreamers and Drivers, and 2016 Top 21 Inspiring CIOs on Twitter. 2015 CIO 100 award from CIO Magazine, and Top 20 Social CIO by Forbes Magazine, and Top 100 Social CIOs by Huffington Post in 2015 and 2016.
Gabriel Biderman has been exploring the night topography for over 20 years. Using film and digital, he blends the surreal look of the night to enhance historic and urban landscapes. Biderman’s work has been exhibited in NY, London, San Francisco, and Hawaii and he is the author of the book Night Photography – From Snapshots to Great Shots. Gabriel has also been teaching photography for over 10 years and is the co-founder of National Parks at Night workshop series and has created educational videos for Creative Live, KelbyOne, and B&H. To learn more about Gabriel visit ruinism.com
Jay Habegger is the co-founder and CEO of ownerIQ. Jay is a pioneer in digital media and advertising having over 20 years experience. He has built The Q from it’s humble beginnings to leading the industry in second party data and as the leading programmatic solution for digital advertisers, retailers and brands. Previously, Jay was the CEO and president of Bitpipe, leading the company through to its sale to TechTarget in 2004 in a $40 million transaction Jay has been a guest speaker at events attended by C-level marketing executives discussing the evolution of digital shopper marketing, retailer monetization, and programmatic advertising. He has also written several bylines for prominent advertising and retail publications such as Ad Age, Internet Retailer, Dealerscope, and TWICE Magazine. In addition, Habegger was acknowledged in The Rayno Report’s 2014 list of Top 11 ad tech visionaries. ownerIQ has been named one of the 50 Fastest Growing Private Companies in Massachusetts by the Boston Business Journal in 2017, as a MITX Award Finalist, in Ad Age’s 2015 B2B Best Awards, Digiday Signal Awards 2015, CIO Review’s 2015 Top 20 Most Promising Retail Technologies and as a Hot Tech to Watch in 2014.
Since joining Fantem in 2014, Colin has been solely focused on the mission of bringing to market a smart home for everyone. He is responsible for driving the company’s GTM strategy for Oomi including launching the brand, scaling up its B2B and DTC channels, and establishing strategic partnerships. He is also instrumental in innovation and new product development and was a driving force behind Oomi’s record breaking crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo. Colin resides in Chicago with his wife and four 10 years-old children and, thanks to Oomi, can finally stop asking if they left the light on.