May 14-18, 2017
San Francisco, CA
Delivering on the promise of data science
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 Dean Abbott

Dean Abbott

Co-Founder and Chief Data Scientist



Dean Abbott is Co-Founder and Chief Data Scientist of SmarterHQ, and President of Abbott Analytics, Inc. in San Diego, California. Mr. Abbott is an internationally recognized data mining and predictive analytics expert with over two decades of experience applying advanced data mining algorithms, data preparation techniques, and data visualization methods to real-world problems, including fraud detection, risk modeling, text mining, personality assessment, response modeling, survey analysis, planned giving, and predictive toxicology.

Mr. Abbott is the author of Applied Predictive Analytics (Wiley, 2014) and co-author of IBM SPSS Modeler Cookbook (Packt Publishing, 2013). He is a highly-regarded and popular speaker at Predictive Analytics and Data Mining conferences and meetups, and is on the Advisory Boards for the UC/Irvine Predictive Analytics Certificate as well as the UCSD Data Mining Certificate programs.

He has a B.S. in Mathematics of Computation from Rensselaer (1985) and a Master of Applied Mathematics from the University of Virginia (1987).

Keynote:The Revolution in Retail Customer Intelligence
Workshop: Supercharging Prediction: Hands-On with Ensemble Models
Workshop: Advanced Methods Hands-on: Predictive Modeling Techniques

 Leanne Bateman

Leanne Bateman

Academic Chair of the Master's degree program in Strategic Analytics

Brandeis University

Leanne M. Bateman, MA, PMP, is the Academic Chair of the Master's degree program in Strategic Analytics at Brandeis University, where she also serves on the faculty. She is also the Principal Consultant with Beacon Strategy Group, a Boston-based management firm specializing in project management services. Leanne has more than 20 years of experience across the areas of health care, biotech, information technology, high-tech manufacturing, human resources, construction, real estate, government, and higher education. She is a member of the Project Management Institute, AIIM: The Global Community of Information Professionals, and the Scrum Alliance. She is a frequent speaker at technology and project management conferences across the country and Canada.

Throughout her career, Leanne has been focused on the effective use of data and systems, and the processes that must take place in order for that data to ultimately serve as strategic instruction to an organization.

Session: Analytics in Academia: Making Sure the Rubber Meets the Road in the Real World

 Charles Berger

Charles Berger

Sr. Director, Product Management, Data Mining and Advanced Analytics


Charlie Berger is Sr. Director of Product Management, for Data Mining and Advanced Analytics at Oracle. He has over 30 years of experience in data analysis software including Oracle, Thinking Machines Corporation, Bolt, Beranek and Newman, Palladian (expert systems), Automatix (robotics and machine vision), Honeywell Computers and IBM. He is responsible for product management and direction of Oracle's in-databases' data mining and predictive analytics technology including data mining, text mining and SQL based statistical functions. He holds a MS in Manufacturing Engineering and an MBA both from Boston University. He holds a BS in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

Session: Education and Training Options for Predictive Analytics
Diamond Sponsor Presentation: Leveraging Best Practices with Oracle Advanced Analytics

 Jay Bhatt

Jay Bhatt

Chief Health Officer

Illinois Hospital Association

Jay Bhatt serves as the first Chief Health Officer at the Illinois Hospital Association. In this role he helps the 200 hospitals and 50 health systems transform, achieve the triple aim, and be positioned to succeed in this era of reform. Most recently, he was Managing Deputy Commissioner and Chief Innovation Officer for the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH). There he lead the implementation of innovations in cross-sector partnerships, predictive analytics, chronic disease and informatics earning numerous national recognition. He also is a practicing internal medicine physician for Erie Family Health Center in Chicago serving vulnerable populations and is a member of the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern faculty.

In 2006-07 he served as the National President of the American Medical Student Association (AMSA) where he led advocacy efforts around the National Health Service Corps. Dr. Bhatt led the development of the AMSA PharmFree Scorecard in 2007 helping change the culture of conflict of interest in academic medical centers.

He graduated from the University of Chicago in 1999 with a degree in Economics. In 2008, Dr. Bhatt received both his medical degree from the PCOM, and his Master in Public Health degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health. In 2012 he received his Masters in Public Administration from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government as a Zuckerman Leadership Fellow and Mongan Commonwealth Fund/Harvard Minority Health Policy Fellow.

Session: Transforming Food Inspections Using Predictive Analytics

 Richard Boire

Richard Boire

Senior Vice President

Environics Analytics

Richard Boire's experience in predictive analytics and data science dates back to 1983, when he received an MBA from Concordia University in Finance and Statistics. 

His initial experience at organizations such as Reader’s Digest and American Express allowed  him to become a pioneer in the application of predictive modelling technology for all database and CRM type marketing programs. This extended to the introduction of models which targeted the acquisition of new customers based on return on investment.

With this experience, Richard formed his own consulting company back in 1994 which is now called the Boire Filler Group, a Canadian leader in offering  analytical and database services to companies seeking solutions to their existing predictive analytics or database marketing challenges.

Richard is a recognized authority on predictive analytics and is among a very few, select top five experts in this field in Canada, with expertise and knowledge that is difficult, if not impossible to replicate in Canada. This expertise has evolved into international speaking assignments and workshop seminars in the U.S., England, Eastern Europe, and Southeast Asia. 

Within Canada, he gives seminars on segmentation and predictive analytics for such organizations as Canadian Marketing Association (CMA), Direct Marketing News, Direct Marketing Association Toronto, Association for Advanced Relationship Marketing (AARM) and Predictive Analytics World (PAW).  His written articles have appeared in numerous Canadian  publications such as  Direct Marketing News, Strategy Magazine, and Marketing Magazine. He has taught applied statistics, data mining and database marketing at a variety of institutions across Canada which include University of Toronto, George Brown College, Seneca College, and currently Centennial College. Richard was  Chair at the CMA's Customer Insight and Analytics Committee and  sat on the CMA's Board of Directors from 2009-2012. He has chaired numerous full day conferences on behalf of the CMA (the 2000 Database and Technology Seminar as well as the  2002 Database and Technology Seminar and the first-ever Customer Profitability Conference  in 2005. He has most recently chaired the Predictive Analytics World conferences in both 2013 and 2014 which were held in Toronto.

He has co-authored white papers on the following topics: "Best Practices in Data Mining" as well as "Customer Profitability:  The State of Evolution among Canadian Companies."  In Oct. of 2014, his new book on "Data Mining for Managers-How to use Data (Big and Small) to Solve Business Problems" was published by Palgrave Macmillian.  In March of 2016, Boire Filler Group was acquired by Environics Analytics where his current role is senior vice-president of innovation.

Session: Predicting Extreme Behavior to improve the rating structure for Travel Insurance

 Ashish  Braganza

Ashish Braganza

Director of Global Intelligence


Ashish Braganza is Director of Global Business Intelligence at Lenovo and responsible for Digital Personalization, Optimization, BI and Big Data Analytics. He leads a global team of 40 Business Analysts, Data Scientists, Modelers, Visualizers and Big Data Architects. He built Lenovo’s first Big Data Platform and draws on his extensive management experience in running and building enterprise analytics for fortune 500’s. He has published articles on Optimization, Digital Strategy, Enterprise Analytics Management and is a frequent industry speaker. Prior to Lenovo, Mr. Braganza was Manager of Digital Analytics and Optimization at Comcast Cable. In that role, he led the Analytics & Optimization practice for the eCommerce and Digital Self Service channels at Comcast. Mr. Braganza has earned an M.S in Quantitative Marketing from Temple University, The Fox School of Business & Management, Philadelphia and an MBA and BS in Business Administration from University of Pune, India.

Lunch & Learn: Driving Unified Customer Experience Insights and Impact: A Case Study Presentation with Lenovo

 Bob Bress

Bob Bress

Vice President of Analytics & Business Intelligence

Freewheel, A Comcast Company

Bob Bress is Vice President of Analytics & Business Intelligence at Freewheel, a Comcast Company focused on advanced advertising technologies. In that role he leads teams of data science and analytical staff using their expertise to lead the development of the next generation of advanced targeted advertising products for television and premium video. Bob has over 15 years of analytics experience across industries including work in hospitality, energy, and at GE's Global Research Center in the Applied Statistics Lab.

Bob holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research & Statistics from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Session: TV Audience Targeting through Predictive Analytics

 Jack  Brinson

Jack Brinson

Director - Oracle Big Data Solutions & Strategy


Jack is responsible for driving business development and strategic initiatives for Oracle Big Data and Oracle Technology product portfolio. He has 25+ years of experience within the Information Technology and Software industry.

He is a long time Oracle veteran (17 years) and has held key positions in Product Management, Consulting, Sales Engineering, Business Development & Strategy, and Global Alliances organizations. He has an extensive technical background with Oracle’s BI/DW and Big Data solutions. He holds several US patents on Oracle’s Database technology. He is based in Oracle’s Washington, DC area office (Reston, Virginia).

Expert Panel: Education and Training Options for Predictive Analytics

 Vivek  Desikan

Vivek Desikan

Director - Strategic Account Management & Service Delivery


Vivek is the resident Math guru and spearheads many of LatentView’s efforts in the evaluation, adoption and implementation of cutting-edge analytics solutions with its clients. Vivek is responsible for partnering with stakeholders in a large strategic account for LatentView and for developing a strong service delivery organization.

Vivek spent many years developing and implementing cutting-edge analytic methodologies for leading Fortune 500 financial services companies including credit card and insurance companies, and online payment providers.

Vivek’s love for statistics extends to his ardent pursuit of cricket online.

He holds a B.Tech. in Computer Science from College of Engineering, Guindy and an MBA from IIM, Ahmedabad.

Sponsor Presentation: Five Things that you Need to do to Increase the Efficiency of Predictive Models

 Dave Dimas

Dave Dimas

Lecturer, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Director, Engineering, Sciences and Information Technology Programs - Extension

University of California, Irvine

Dr. Dimas is a lecturer in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering and the Director of Information Technology, Engineering and Science programs for the University of California, Irvine. In this latter role he is tasked to insure that the US workforce has the skills required to meet the changing needs of the business community. He has developed many certificate programs including Predictive Analytics, Data Science, Big Data, Data Management, Web Intelligence and Business Intelligence and Data Warehousing. Dr. Dimas has been a lecturer for the school of engineering for over 20 years. His teaching and research areas include; numerical analysis, engineering simulation, product lifecycle management and effective educational methods in STEM.

Dr. Dimas also worked at Santa Ana, Calif.-based MSC Software corporation for over 25 years. While at the simulation solutions company, he served in a number of top-level management positions including director of customer support, training services, educational sales and product documentation. In this role he implemented several analytics-based systems and processes that included a global CRM system that significantly improved the operational efficiency of the organization. In addition, he worked for Costa Mesa-based PDA Engineering as director of support and training deploying similar tools and processes to efficiently run the business while keeping customer satisfaction levels high.

Dimas received his bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from UC Irvine in 1978, master's degree in engineering mechanics in 1979, and a Ph.D. in civil engineering in 1988. Since 1985, Dimas has played an active role in the university's Henry Samueli School of Engineering securing several large donations to the School, valued cumulatively at more than $20 million. He was also honored with the university's distinguished alumni award in 2006.

Expert Panel: Education and Training Options for Predictive Analytics

 Bill Dolby

Bill Dolby

Senior Director, Worldwide Sales Operations


Following 20 years of field sales and sales leadership positions in high tech companies like IBM, DEC, Bay Networks and Nokia, Bill Dolby, Senior Director of Worldwide Sales Operations for RingCentral, transitioned to Sales Operations as a career focus. Since then he has led global or regional sales operations for companies like Nokia, Taleo, Trend Micro and now RingCentral. With a strong sales background, he is well prepared to offer Executive Management insights into the data in the CRM, Territory Management, Forecasting, Sales Enablement, and Cloud Analytics.

Session: Going Beyond BI: How RingCentral Uses Predictive Analytics to Drive Revenue Growth

 Mark Eduljee

Mark Eduljee

Business Program Manager for Insights Intelligence Data Sciences, Global Customer Support Services


Mark leads real-time and near real-time voice interaction and unstructured text analytics Insights Intelligence and data sciences across Microsoft’s multi-vendor, multi audience, multi product and services global support centers. The mission is to provide the right insights, at the right time, for the right purpose, to the right audience for action that drives business impact and ROI. He has deep experience with, and is passionate about, the root-causes of a Company’s customer experience, and the drivers of its satisfaction, affinity, and loyalty for business revenue and health. In an earlier role at Microsoft he led the MVP influencer satisfaction, affinity and loyalty program, moving OSAT from the mid 40’s to consistently over 80% within 2 years. As customers moved in ever increasing numbers to talk about their experiences online, he followed the trend to lead the Consumer Support Social Media Insights and Intelligence team who synthesized hundreds of millions of social data points to track and monitor major product launched like Windows 8, Office, Surface and others. He has led small, agile, performance-driven teams, as well as larger teams of up to over 20, received Customer-Partner Experience Champion Microsoft awards, Industry awards (TMRE Explore), and has been a sought-after conference speaker for over 5 years. Off-work he likes to run off mountains under a paraglider, hike the Himalayas, and has been scuba diving in the USVI. A family man, he has 2 daughters, one of who is an opera singer (look for Serena on YT), and the other a budding business major.

Diamond Sponsor Presentation : Next Generation Customer Insights from Multichannel: A Case Study in the Use of Machine Learning and NLP

Dr. John Elder, Ph.D.

Dr. John Elder, Ph.D.

Founder & Chair

Elder Research


John Elder chairs America’s most experienced Data Science consultancy. Founded in 1995, Elder Research has offices in Virginia, Maryland, North Carolina, Washington DC, and London. Dr. Elder co-authored 3 award-winning books on analytics, was a discoverer of ensemble methods, chairs international conferences, and is a popular keynote speaker. John is occasionally an Adjunct Professor of Systems Engineering at the University of Virginia.

Special Plenary Session: Top Five Technical Tricks to Try when Trapped
Workshop: The Best and the Worst of Predictive Analytics: Predictive Modeling Methods and Common Data Mining Mistakes

 Byron Ellis

Byron Ellis

Chief Technology Officer


Byron Ellis is CTO of Spongecell, where he heads research and development. Prior to Spongecell, Byron served as Chief Data Scientist for LivePerson, a company that helps businesses engage in real-time customer communications. Byron also held various leadership positions at AdBrite, eventually serving as the company's CTO. Byron holds a PhD in Statistics from Harvard University and was a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford Medical School. Byron earned a BS in Cybernetics from UCLA.

Session: Drowning in Data: Predictive Analytics in a 24/7 World

 Dominic Fortin

Dominic Fortin

National Director, Business Intelligence


Dominic Fortin is currently national director of business intelligence at Co-operators. With a degree in actuarial mathematics, he has been involved all his career with data and analytics playing many roles in data warehouse architecture, business intelligence, forecasting, indepth analytics and more. In his current role he is responsible to set the grounds of a truly data centric organization utilizing analytics at all levels, from the operations to the decision makers.

Session: A Success Story: Sales and Revenue Forecasting through Predictive Analytics

 Fred Grunwald

Fred Grunwald

Vice President Analytics

New Directions Behavioral Health

Fred Grunwald is the Vice President of Analytics at New Directions Behavioral Health where he manages the Analytics, Reporting and Claims Audit functions. Fred has led numerous Analytics efforts directed at improved outcomes and lower costs in the Behavioral Health market. These include lowering readmissions, increasing HEDIS™ scores, using patient mix to create comparative case rates for facilities, and identifying utilization differences using demographic lifestyle clusters.

Fred has worked in health care for his entire career in both hospitals and payer settings. He has a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Chicago and an undergraduate degree in Industrial Engineering & Operations Research from the University of Missouri.

Session: Predicting Undiagnosed Substance Abuse

 Bryan Guenther

Bryan Guenther

Qi Program Manager


Bryan joined RightShip in 2013 to enhance the capabilities of the existing Ship Vetting Information System, employing predictive analytics deliver to the commercial shipping sector a state-of-the-art risk management system RightShip Qi.

Before joining RightShip, Bryan worked at BP as a Business Project Manager and was responsible for designing, implementing and delivering BP Shipping's largest ever transformation IT project. He was also Senior Vetting Specialist and Port Information Superintendent for BP in the US and UK.

Bryan has also held the positions of Vice President - Business Development for Heidenreich Innovations, Project Manager for Optimum Logistics in New York, Director of Technology at, and he also established the first Maritime Assurance Program at ARCO Marine.

Bryan has a Bachelor of Science in Marine Transportation, commencing his seafaring career as a Cadet on container ships with American President Lines and later sailing as a Senior Officer on ARCO tankers.

Session: The Impact of Predictive Analytics on Maritime Safety and Efficiency

 John Haller

John Haller

Chief Data Scientist and VP

CCC Information Services

A native of sunny San Diego, with a background in Electrical Engineering from Stanford, John is passionate about pushing the envelope on big data and analytics. John is the Director of Data Science at CCC Information Services Inc. where he works to improve the claims process through the use of data analytics and predictive solutions. He has had the privilege of speaking at numerous analytics conferences on the world stage including Shanghai, Beijing, Austria, and Spain. Now a father of 2 boys, John stays active by running after them.

Session: Predictive Claims Management: Identifying the Optimal Repair or Loss Channel

 Daniel Hansen

Daniel Hansen

Data Scientist


Daniel is a Data Scientist at Personagraph where he works primarily on text classification problems. Prior to Personagraph, Daniel was a post-Doctoral researcher in the Physics department at UC Santa Cruz. His
work focused on the effects of strong correlations in quantum fluids.

Session: Efficient Text Classification with Neural Nets

 Josh  Hemann

Josh Hemann

Director - Analytic Services


Josh Hemann is a Principal Statistician in Activision’s Game Analytics Team, where he builds analytic services that support video game development studios. His industry experience in analytics spans diverse settings such as oil and gas exploration, aerospace, retail loyalty programs, recommendation systems for grocers, and massively multiplayer on-line games. Throughout these settings he has appreciated how much effective visual communication is critical for influencing decisions made by scientists and executives alike. Josh has an MS in Applied Mathematics from the University of Colorado at Boulder where he maintains involvement in air pollution research.

Session: Cheating Detection in Call of Duty

 Thomas Hill, Ph.D.

Thomas Hill, Ph.D.

Executive Director Analytics

Dell Software Group

Dr. Thomas Hill is Executive Director for Analytics at Dell Software Group. He joined Dell through the acquisition of StatSoft Inc. in April 2014, where he had been Senior Vice President for Analytic Solutions for over 20 years and was responsible for building out Statistica into a leading analytics platform. Dr. Hill received his Vordiplom in psychology from Kiel University in Germany and earned an M.S. in industrial psychology and a Ph.D. in psychology and quantitative methods from the University of Kansas. He was on the faculty of the University of Tulsa from 1984 to 2009, where he conducted research in cognitive science and taught data analysis and data mining courses. He has received numerous academic grants and awards from the US National Science Foundation, the National Institute of Health, the Center for Innovation Management, and other institutions. Over the past 20 years, his team has completed diverse consulting projects with companies from practically all industries and has worked with leading financial services, insurance, retailing, manufacturing, pharmaceutical, healthcare, and other companies in the United States and internationally on identifying and refining effective predictive modeling solutions for a broad scope of applications. Dr. Hill has published widely on innovative applications for data mining and predictive analytics and is also the author (with Paul Lewicki, 2005) of "Statistics: Methods and Applications," the "Electronic Statistics Textbook" (a popular on-line resource on statistics and data mining), and a co-author of "Practical Text Mining and Statistical Analysis for Non-Structured Text Data Applications" (2012) and "Practical Predictive Analytics and Decisioning Systems for Medicine" (Elsevier/Academic Press, 2014). Hill is also a contributing author to the popular "Handbook of Statistical Analysis and Data Mining Applications (2009)."

Diamond Sponsor Presentation: New Challenges: From Predictive to Prescriptive to Automated Analytics

 Sarah Holder

Sarah Holder

Sr. Market Research Analyst

Duke Energy

Sarah Holder has been an analyst with Duke Energy for six years. She worked closely with SAS to implement predictive modeling best practices. She has a Bachelor of Science in statistics from North Carolina State University

Session: It's Not a Black Box! Explaining Predictive Models to the Masses

 John Ittner

John Ittner

Sr. Director


John Ittner is focused on research projects and initiatives for TransUnion's insurance analytics group. He utilizes TransUnion's unique insurance data assets for reporting and client-focused proactive analytics and is also responsible for marketing, underwriting and retention analytics.

Prior to TransUnion, Mr. Ittner worked at Liberty Mutual and Safeco Insurance in various capacities including property research, auto research, director of state operations and trends and financial forecasting. He has also served as a consulting actuary, professor at Columbia University and housing/economics researcher at the Federal Reserve Board.

Session: What Unique Data Assets Reveal about Auto Insurance Shopping and Consumers

 Ron Jayaraman

Ron Jayaraman

Demand Chain & Logistics Programs & Financials Manager


Ron is a seasoned program manager and team manager at the intersection of Supply Chain Management, Information Technology, Performance Management, Strategic Finance & Process Improvement. His Supply Chain & operations experience spans across diverse industry verticals. He is an excellent program leader with broad supplier, resource & customer management experience. Prior to 7-Eleven, he was employed within Energy retail, consumer goods, automotive, & secure logistics industries. He is a graduate of Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.

Session: Converting Deep Dive Analytics to Structured Cadence for Optimizing Logistics Priorities

 Mohamad Khatib

Mohamad Khatib

Sr. Project Manager


Mr. Khatib has been leading delivery of IT solutions to clients for over 20 years. He is currently a deployment lead at the Nielsen COE for advanced analytics deployments to leading CPG manufacturers and retailers. Prior to Nielsen, he worked at IBM and led delivery of data warehousing and mining systems to leading financial institutions, and oversaw the rollout of IBM's leading big data platforms to these clients.

Mr. Khatib was a cofounder of an IT solutions company that specialized in delivery of integrated CRM solutions, and introduced innovations in information integration across multiple data platforms. Mr Khatib holds a Master degree in Computer Engineering from the University of Florida.

Session: Pizza Analytics & Optimization

 Steve  Knode

Steve Knode

Program Director

University of Maryland University College (UMUC)

Currently engaged in an academic career, Dr.Steve Knode is a retired Air Force officer who served twenty years in the USAF in a variety of analytical and decision making positions. He was an intercontinental missile crew commander, a tactical operations planner at major command headquarters, and served in Plans and Programs in the Pentagon. He obtained his PhD at Syracuse University in the area of Operations Research Management and also possesses an MS in Industrial Management from the University of North Dakota as well as BS in Mathematics from Duke University.

Session: Decision Modeling for Predictive Analytic Projects

 Scott Lancaster

Scott Lancaster

Vice President

State Street Corp.

Scott Lancaster, a VP at State Street, is part of the Application Development & Maintenance Governance in their IT organization and leads Performance Analytics and Estimation Center of Excellence along with other program management responsibilities.

Prior to his current role he worked in the Basel II PMO using analytics to manage the critical path. Before working for State Street, Scott worked for IBM/Rational as project manager, software services consultant, and technical field sales specialist where he assisted Fortune 500 clients in deploying improved software development and business processes.

Scott began his interest in predictive analytics and estimation over 20 years ago while working for Intel. He has a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and expects to receive his Master of Science in Predictive Analytics from Northwestern in 2015. He has over 24 years of experience in the technology industry and is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP).

Session: How Can Predictive Analytics Help Avoid $1.2 Million In IT Project Development Costs?

 Aaron Lanzen

Aaron Lanzen

Solutions Architect - Business Rules & Analytics


Aaron Lanzen has spent the last 15 years of his professional career in various IT and business roles creating innovative, long term business solutions that blend technology with the disciplines of decision science and operations management. The last 9 years have been in Cisco's Technical Support Operations. Aaron's current role is the Solutions Architect for Business Rules and Analytics. His focus is the continued evolution of the business owned platform used to plan, optimize, and execute service delivery at a global scale.

Aaron has a BS in Finance and an MS in Decision and Information Science from the University of Florida. His home is in Raleigh NC with his wife, 4 year old son

Session: Integrating Predictive Models within a Rules Engine for Resource Allocation

 Kim Larsen

Kim Larsen

VP of Data


Kim Larsen is the VP of Data at ThirdLove. Kim has experience working in the software and consulting industries, as well as e-commerce and financial services. Throughout his career, he has managed a wide array of data mining and analytical problems including price optimization, media mix optimization, demand forecasting, customer segmentation, and predictive modeling. Kim frequently speaks at data mining conferences around the world in the areas of segmentation and predictive modeling. His main areas of research include additive non-linear modeling and net lift models (incremental lift models).

Session: Response Modeling is the Wrong Modeling: Maximize Impact with Uplift Modeling
Workshop: Uplift Models: Optimizing the Impact of Your Marketing

 Jack Levis

Jack Levis

Senior Director, Process Management


"Through the marriage of technology, information and analytics UPS reduces cost and improves services. These advanced technologies streamline our business processes and ultimately benefit our customers."

Jack Levis, Senior Director of Process Management, drives the development of operational technology solutions. These solutions require advanced analytics to reengineer current processes to streamline the business and maximize productivity.

Under Jack's direction, UPS has completed integration of multiple operations systems, requiring extensive system engineering, usability and analytics provisions. These systems ultimately synchronize the flow of data throughout UPS, allowing the seamless movement of goods, funds and information.

Jack has been the business owner and process designer for UPS' award-winning Package Flow Technology suite of systems, a breakthrough change for UPS, resulting in 85 million fewer miles driven each year.

His team designed UPS' next generation of dispatching technologies which use advanced optimizations. The world-class optimizations and systems, UPS ORION, On-Road Integrated Optimization and Navigation, is in deployment and will provide significant operational benefits to UPS and its customers.

Having earned his Bachelor of Arts in psychology, from California State University Northridge, Jack also holds a Master's Certificate in Project Management from George Washington University.

Jack holds advisory council positions for multiple universities and associations, including the U.S. Census Bureau Scientific Advisory Committee.

In his spare time, Jack enjoys baseball, scuba diving, skiing, home electronics and Corvettes. He lives in York, Pa. with his wife and four children.

Keynote: UPS Analytics - The Road to Optimization

 Anees Merchant

Anees Merchant

Senior Vice President - Digital

Blueocean Market Intelligence

Anees has over 18 years of industry experience and has worked with numerous global Fortune 500 clients across various industries, including Retail, Travel and Hospitality, Telecommunications and Technology, Media and eCommerce. Prior to joining Blueocean Market Intelligence, Anees was in an executive role at eClerx Services Ltd. for nine years, where he was instrumental in setting up a team of 500+ people across functions in digital analytics, marketing automation, social media marketing, visualization and analytics. He has also played a significant role in developing core functions such as knowledge management, quality practices, operations excellence and presales throughout his career. Apart from strong domain and operations background, Anees is also trained on Lean Six Sigma with sound understanding of applying quality tools in day-to-day delivery. He has a MBA from SVKM’s Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies in Mumbai.

Lunch & Learn: Driving Unified Customer Experience Insights and Impact: A Case Study Presentation with Lenovo

 Ashwin  Mittal

Ashwin Mittal


Blueocean Market Intelligence

Ashwin has deep expertise in knowledge process management and structuring client engagements for success. Prior to joining Blueocean Market Intelligence, he spent time in the corporate treasury at Reliance Industries in Mumbai and in a strategic consulting role with Cap Gemini Ernst & Young in New York. He received the “Star Entrepreneur" award at the India International Innovation Summit in January 2009. Ashwin has a Bachelors and Master’s degree in Commerce, is a qualified Chartered Accountant, and holds a Master of Business Administration from the Anderson School at UCLA and London Business School.

Diamond Sponsor Presentation : Next Generation Customer Insights from Multichannel: A Case Study in the Use of Machine Learning and NLP

 Bin Mu

Bin Mu

VP, Business Analytics


Bin Mu is the Vice President, Data Science of MetLife. In this capacity, he is responsible for applying advanced analytics to identify and explore business opportunities, increase topline sales, and improve operation efficiency and effectiveness. He currently leads a team of 20 data scientists that supports MetLife’s business across all the product lines. Before joining MetLife, Bin was the Global Head of Data Analytics at Cigna, responsible for all the analytics to support group business. Prior to that, Bin Mu held various analytics leadership positions at Deloitte, Limited Brands, and The Hackett Group.

Bin Mu is a competitive marathoner and active triathlete.

Keynote: Establishing Value: the "Making Impact Through Analytics" Framework

 Philip O'Brien

Philip O'Brien

MIS and Portfolio Manager


Philip O'Brien is responsible for the predictive analytics program at Paychex Inc., a leading provider of payroll, human resource, insurance, and benefits outsourcing solutions for small- to medium-sized businesses. The predictive analytics team at Paychex has implemented models to help with strategic decisions across all aspects of the business, including effectively targeting retention strategies, assisting in dynamic cross-sell initiatives, improving collection targets for bottom line results, and driving client service progression strategies.

Philip has been with Paychex for 15 years and has served in a leadership capacity within analytics for the past ten years. For well over a decade, Paychex has developed its predictive analytics program and has earned industry recognition for its leadership in the space. The predictive analytics function at Paychex continues to grow and add value across the organization, with more than 20 models divided between four portfolios: Operations, Sales, Risk, and Strategy.

Session: Shaping Sales Strategy with Predictive Analytics

 Jim Porzak

Jim Porzak


Jim is a semi-retired data scientist specializing in data-driven customer insights. He is currently engaged by One Medical (San Francisco), Li and Fung (Hong Kong), and Leitersburg Cinemas (MD). In 2015 he focused on (a LinkedIn/Microsoft company). Past experience includes,, Responsys, LA Times, 24 Hour Fitness and Sun Microsystems, to name a few.

Jim specializes in using customer behavioral and demographic data to predict propensity to purchase and/or churn, do uplift modeling, segment customers based on cluster analysis, and do routine marketing analytics. Jim is very active in the open-source community; particularly with R-the open-source software environment for statistical computing and graphics. He is a frequent speaker at conferences in the US & Europe.

Session: Data Driven Customer Segmentation Methods

 Steven Ramirez

Steven Ramirez


Beyond the Arc


Steven J. Ramirez is the chief executive officer of Berkeley, Calif.-based Beyond the Arc, Inc., a firm recognized as a leader in helping companies transform their customer experiences by leveraging advanced analytics.

In addition to developing and executing the vision for Beyond the Arc, Ramirez leads teams of data and strategy consultants committed to client success. They analyze customer and social media data, combined with text analysis, to drive customer growth, improve customer retention, understand service breaks and build stronger customer loyalty.

Prior to leading Beyond the Arc, Ramirez served as an executive with Time Warner, where he was responsible for creating and successfully implementing marketing and corporate development strategies.

Ramirez earned a bachelor's degree and master's in Business Administration from the University of California at Berkeley. He as also created and taught courses in business management for UC Berkeley and been a guest speaker at the university's Haas School of Business.

Q&A Ask Dean and Steven Anything (about Best Practices)

 Shawn Rogers

Shawn Rogers

Chief Research Officer - Information Management Group

Dell Statistica

Shawn Rogers is Chief Research Officer for the Information Management Group at Dell Software. Shawn is an internationally recognized thought leader, speaker, author and instructor on the topics of big data, analytics, cloud, data integration, data warehousing and social analytics.

Shawn has more than 19 years of hands-on IT experience. Prior to joining Dell he was Vice President Research for Business Intelligence and Analytics at Enterprise Management Associates a leading analyst firm. He co-founded the BeyeNETWORK, a global publication covering business intelligence, data warehousing, and analytics. He was also a partner at DMReview magazine.

Expert Panel: Education and Training Options for Predictive Analytics

 David Schey

David Schey

Senior Director, Analytic Consulting Group


David Schey has over 14 years experience consulting Fortune 1000 companies on optimizing marketing and CRM programs, both within digital and offline channels. David has successfully designed, implemented, and measured hundreds of analytic, marketing and database solutions for clients across the Retail, CPG, Pharmaceutical, B2B, Telecommunications, and Financial Services industries, both within the U.S. and Europe. He has held management and senior-level positions at several leading agencies and consultancies, including Epsilon, Merkle, Harte Hanks, and Digitas.

Session: Uplift Modeling Versus Traditional Response Modeling - Which One is Right for You?

 Marc Smith

Marc Smith

Chief Social Scientist

Connected Action Consulting Group

Dr. Marc A. Smith is a sociologist specializing in the social organization of online communities and computer mediated interaction. Smith leads the Connected Action consulting group. Smith co-founded the Social Media Research Foundation (, a non-profit devoted to open tools, data, and scholarship related to social media research. He contributes to the open and free NodeXL project ( that adds social network analysis features to the familiar Excel spreadsheet. NodeXL enables social network analysis of email, Twitter, Flickr, WWW, Facebook and other network data sets. Along with Derek Hansen and Ben Shneiderman, he is the co-author and editor of Analyzing Social Media Networks with NodeXL: Insights from a connected world, from Morgan-Kaufmann which is a guide to mapping connections created through computer-mediated interactions. Smith has published research on social media extensively, providing a map to the landscape of connected communities on the Internet.

Session: Think Link: Connecting to the Power of Social Networks with no Programing with NodeXL
Workshop: Big Data: Proven Methods You Need to Extract Big Value

 Mike Tamir

Mike Tamir

Head of Data Science, Advanced Technologies Group


Mike serves as Head of Data Science at Uber ATG, UC Berkeley Data Science faculty, and head of Skymind Labs the Machine Learning research lab affiliated with DeepLearning4J.  He has led teams of Data Scientists in the bay area as Chief Data Scientist for InterTrust, Director of Data Sciences for MetaScale/Sears, and CSO for Galvanize where he founded the galvanizeU-UNH accredited Masters of Science in Data Science degree and oversaw the company's transformation from co-working space to Data Science organization.  Mike began his career in academia serving as a mathematics teaching fellow for Columbia University before teaching at the University of Pittsburgh. His early research focused on developing the epsilon-anchor methodology for resolving both an inconsistency he highlighted in the dynamics of Einstein’s general relativity theory and the convergence of “large N” Monte Carlo simulations in Statistical Mechanics’ universality models of criticality phenomena.

Session: Efficient Text Classification with Neural Nets

 James Taylor

James Taylor


Decision Management Solutions

James Taylor is the CEO of Decision Management Solutions and is a leading expert in how to use business rules and analytic technology to build decision management systems. He is passionate about using decision management systems to help companies improve decision-making and develop an agile, analytic and adaptive business. He provides strategic consulting to companies of all sizes, working with clients in all sectors to adopt decision-making technology. James is an expert member of the International Institute for Analytics and is the author of multiple books and articles on decision management, decision modeling, predictive analytics and business rules, and writes a regular blog at JT on EDM. James also delivers webinars, workshops and training. He is a regular keynote speaker at conferences around the world.

Session: Decision Modeling for Predictive Analytic Projects

 Kristopher Thodosoff

Kristopher Thodosoff

Quantitative Analyst

New Directions Behavioral Health

Kristopher Thodosoff has been a Quantitative Analyst at New Directions Behavioral Health since September 2013. His work focuses on two primary considerations: applying predictive analytics and machine learning algorithms to improve behavioral healthcare outcomes, and collaborating with IT and clinical operations to implement and evaluate analytic solutions. He holds both bachelor's and master's degree in economics.

Session: Predicting Undiagnosed Substance Abuse

 Andreas  Weigend

Andreas Weigend


Social Data Lab

Andreas Weigend studies people and the data they create and share. He works with companies that are eager to develop strategies to realize the untapped power of data. Clients include Alibaba, Best Buy, Lufthansa,, Nokia, Thomson Reuters, and the World Economic Forum. He also advises exciting startups around the globe, and as a partner with Open-First, helps organizations absorb relevant insights based on data, mobile and social technologies. Previously, as the Chief Scientist of, he helped build the customer-centric and measurement-focused culture central to Amazon's success.

Session: Data Alchemy, Mythology and the Quest for the Perpetual Data Machine

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