Introducing Our Speakers Check back as this page is frequently updated!
Speakers - Saturday, November 20
Opening General Session: Hayley Arceneaux (4:00 pm - 5:00 pm)
Hayley Arceneaux, Historic SpaceX Astronaut and Cancer Survivor
Hayley's interest in space dates back to her childhood, when her family visited the NASA complex on a vacation. "I got to see where the astronauts trained and of course wanted to be an astronaut after that - who doesn't?" But a pediatric cancer diagnosis at age 10 put her dreams of space travel on hold. Her experience at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital not only cured her, but also changed her career aspirations. Now a physician assistant at St. Jude, she's giving back to the place that saved her life as a child. In a journey that's come full circle, she will be an ambassador for the research hospital on the recently announced Inspiration4 to space. In addition to being part of the first all-civilian crew to travel to space, she will make history in another way, becoming the first person with a prosthesis to go into orbit.
Speakers - Sunday, November 21
General Session: Working Across the Aisle (9:00 am - 10:00 am)
Speaker Spencer Gosch (SD)
Minority Leader Jamie Smith (SD)
Monica Guzman, Braver Angels, Director of Digital and Storytelling
Monica Guzman is the Director of Digital Storytelling at Braver Angels and the host of Crosscut's monthly interview series Northwest Newsmakers. A Seattle-based journalist who lives for good conversation sparked by challenging questions, she's cofounder of Seattle newsletter The Evergrey and a recent fellow at the Henry M. Jackson Foundation and Harvard's Nieman Foundation for Journalism. Her guide to staying curious in dangerously divided times is due to publish BenBella Books in 2022.
Breakout Session: Healthcare Innovation, Access and Equity (10:15 am - 11:15 am)
Scott McGoohan, JD, Senior Director Policy & Alliance Development, Vertex
Scott currently serves as Senior Director, Policy and Alliance Development for Vertex Pharmaceuticals and leads Vertex's genetic therapy policy portfolio. Prior to joining Vertex, Scott served as Director of Scientific and Regulatory Affairs at the Biotechnology Innovation Organization, where he led a broad array of activities related to the innovative biopharmaceutical industry and served as an industry negotiator on the FDA User Fee Agreement reauthorizations. He previously held roles with the American Clinical Laboratory Association, Harvard Medical School, and Genzyme, and worked as a contract lobbyist and scientific advisor, representing pharmaceutical and device companies and their interests on Capitol Hill. Scott received his Bachelors of Science from Boston College, specializing in molecular biology, and his Juris Doctorate from the University of Wisconsin Law School.
Tom Whitehead, CEO Emily Whitehead Foundation
Tom Whitehead is a keynote speaker, author, and journeyman lineman for Penelec, a FirstEnergy Company. He is also the proud father of Emily, and co-founder of the Emily Whitehead Foundation, which raises funds and awareness for pediatric cancer immunotherapy research. Tom and his wife Kari founded the Emily Whitehead Foundation in honor of their daughter Emily who was diagnosed at age five with an aggressive form of leukemia that failed to respond to chemotherapy. As a last hope, Emily was enrolled in a clinical trial and became the first pediatric patient in the world to receive CAR T-cell therapy. The therapy worked and Emily is now 9 years cancer free.
Breakout Session: Supply Chain Challenges: Charting a Path Forward (10:15 am - 11:15 am)
Jennifer Salts, CPPO, CPPB, Chief Administrative Officer, NASPO Jennifer Salts is NASPO's Chief Administrative Officer. Jennifer supports the NASPO Board of Directors and Administrative Committee as well as providing strategic support for NASPO's Chief Executive Officer. Her responsibilities include strategic initiatives, program implementation, and performance measurement. Jennifer serves as Chief Officer for the Administration, Membership, and Communication divisions. In addition to her executive leadership role, Jennifer leads daily administrative operations for NASPO as a 501(c)3 non-profit association dedicated to advancing public procurement through leadership excellence and integrity.
Prior to her engagement with NASPO, Jennifer was a Deputy Director with the State of Utah's Division of Purchasing. In this role, she was responsible for organizational operations, developed strategic partnerships with procurement stakeholders, and established procurement and professional training for state departments and divisions, higher and public education units, and public entities.
Dave Selman, Senior Vice President, Delve
Dave Selman is the Senior Vice President at Delve, a Washington-based competitive intelligence and risk advisory firm. At Delve, Dave helps government affairs professionals at major corporations, trade associations, and advocacy organizations obtain and leverage competitive intelligence to gain a deeper understanding of their operating landscape and better anticipate what comes next. These insights help organizations identify trends and opportunities and navigate challenges to their business interests. Prior to his work at Delve, Dave worked with a geopolitical risk consultancy, helping prominent infrastructure and investment management companies better understand geopolitical and public affairs risks and opportunities for their investments. Dave has also worked at influential advocacy groups helping to strengthen US economic and national security. Dave started his career in the financial services industry, spending 15 years with the private client groups at major Wall Street financial services firms, where he gained a deep understanding and insight of the relationship between markets, policy making and Main Street.
Meredith Beeson, Director, State Government Relations, Global Business Alliance
Meredith Beeson is the Director of State Affairs at the Global Business Alliance who is focused on educating policy makers about the important role of foreign direct investment helping advance policies that ensure fair treatment of U.S. subsidiaries of foreign owned companies. Meredith has over 12 years of experience in leading state public policy and lobbying efforts.
Prior to joining GBA, Meredith operated as a Senior Policy Manager at Target Corporation. She covered legislative issues related to tax, transportation, environment and corporate security for all states and key local markets. Prior work also included work for Minneapolis-based Faegre, Baker, and Daniels LLP, the City of Saint Paul, MN and in the U.S. Senate. Meredith has a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science from the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities and currently serves on the SGAC Board of Directors.
Breakout Session: Staying Connected: The Importance of Broadband & Closing the Digital Divide (11:30 am - 12:30 pm)
Julia Pulidindi, BroadbandUSA, NTIA Julia Pulidindi joined the National Telecommunications and Information Administration in September 2021 as a broadband program specialist with the BroadbandUSA program. Just before joining NTIA, Ms. Pulidindi was with the Atlanta City Council for five years where she was the staff lead for the Council's transportation and community development policy and legislative committees. Prior to the Atlanta City Council, she spent ten years at the National League of Cities working on transportation and telecommunications infrastructure issues. Ms. Pulidindi works on BroadbandUSA's broadband infrastructure team coordinating partnerships and outreach with state and local governments on broadband programs and policy issues. Ms. Pulidindi holds a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Richmond College in London and a Master of Science in Development Economics from the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London.
Thomas E. De Poy, SVP, Money Management International
Tom De Poy is the Senior Vice-President of Industry Relations at Money Management International (MMI), a 501(c)3 dedicated to helping consumers make empowered financial decisions through education and counseling. Tom leverages 35 years of experience and long-established relationships in financial services to help MMI develop and grow life-changing consumer programs to create financial stability. With experience in collections, customer care, and institutional support, he has a deep understanding of the consumer financial journey and facilitates MMI's relationship with local governments including the City of Los Angeles and the states of Arizona and Nevada.
Representative Bill Owen, (MO)
Representative Bill Owen, a Republican, represents Greene County (District 131) in the Missouri House of Representatives. He was elected to his second two-year term in November 2020. Owen spent 39 years in the banking industry, and previously served in the Missouri House from 1981 - 82. He sponsored the Missouri Enterprise Zone Act in 1982, and he sponsored an increase of the cigarette tax for education. Owen has a long history of working in his community and was named "Contributor of the Year" in 2019 by the North Springfield Betterment Association. He belongs to the First and Calvary Presbyterian Church. Born in Springfield, Owen attended Parkview High School before Drury University for his undergraduate degree. He also has a degree from the Graduate School of Banking at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He continues to reside in Springfield with his wife, Carol. They have two children.
David Zasada, Vice President, Education and Corporate Responsibility, Intuit
David Zasada is Intuit's Vice President of Corporate Responsibility. He leads all corporate responsibility programs for Intuit, helping millions of individuals become better prepared for jobs, as well as driving efforts to have a positive impact on climate. He is focused on increasing educational equity for students in underserved communities through providing free access to programs that build durable skills for the modern, global workplace. Prior to taking his current role in 2019, Zasada was Vice President of Education for Intuit, supporting schools and universities across the country by providing real world tools as part of their career and financial readiness programs.
Before joining Intuit, Zasada previously held a number of senior leadership roles in educational technology organizations where he consistently worked to empower and inspire educators and students to reach their career goals. He currently serves as a board member for the Collegiate Entrepreneurs' Organization and the JumpStart Coalition, as well as an advisory board member for DECA.
Speakers - Monday, November 22
General Session: Reality of AI & Technology: Its Issue on Government & Business (9:00 am - 10:00 am)
Kevin Surace, CEO of Appance, Futurist and Disruptive Innovation Keynote Speaker, Creator of First Smartphone and Digital Assistant, CNBC Innovator of the Decade
Kevin Surace is a Silicon Valley innovator, serial entrepreneur, CEO, TV personality and Edutainer. Kevin has been featured by Businessweek, Time, Fortune, Forbes, CNN, ABC, MSNBC, FOX News, and has keynoted hundreds of events, from INC5000 to TED to the US Congress. While he has a technical background with 93 worldwide patents, he is known as a very dynamic speaker who is a true entertainer.
Mr. Surace led pioneering work on the first cellular data smartphone (AirCommunicator), the first plastic multichip semiconductor packages, the first human-like AI virtual assistant (Portico), soundproof drywall, high R-value windows, AI-driven building management technology, AI-driven QA automation, and the window/energy retrofits of the Empire State Building and NY Stock Exchange. He is also an accomplished music director, conductor, Broadway producer, and percussionist.
Breakout Session: The Future of Transportation: They Future of Mobility (10:15 am - 11:15 am)
Amy Brink, Vice President, State Government Affairs, Alliance for Automotive Innovation
Amy is the Vice President of State Government Affairs for the Alliance for Automotive Innovation. Amy joined the Auto Innovators team in January 2020, from the association's inception. Prior to that she was with the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers since 2005. Amy is an automotive lawyer specializing in state legislative and regulatory matters involving motor vehicle safety, technology, franchise, and environmental issues. Prior to joining the auto industry, she worked for the National Retail Federation and the International Franchise Association. In her role as Vice President of State Government Affairs, she oversees a team of 4 regional directors and a nationwide network of in-state lobbyists. Originally from Michigan, Amy earned a B.A. from Michigan State University and a J.D. from The Catholic University of America. She lives in Alexandria, Virginia with her family.
Tom Tucker, Director of State Government Affairs, Auto Care Association
Tom Tucker serves as the Director of State Government Affairs for the Auto Care Association and has extensive experience advocating complex legislative and regulatory issues before federal, state and local governmental agencies over the past 15 years. Tom has particular expertise in technology issues, privacy, data collection and storage, intellectual property, e-commerce, tax policy, energy conservation, sustainability, community development, crisis management and community engagement. Tom attended the University of Texas at Austin, majoring in Communications, completed the Nonprofit Management Leadership Program at Georgetown University and the Senior Executives in State and Local Government Program at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. Tom enjoys golf, swimming, bike riding and family activities with his children.
Breakout Session: Cybersecurity - The Digital Transformation (10:15 am - 11:15 am)
Amanda Crawford, Executive Director and Chief Information Officer (Texas)
Amanda Crawford is the Executive Director of the Texas Department of Information Resources (DIR). In this role, she is responsible for the overall leadership, director, and daily operations of DIR, an agency with an annual fiscal profile of more than $4 billion per year. DIR's responsibilities include protecting the state's data and critical technology infrastructure, managing a multi-billion-dollar cooperative contracts program, and providing strategic technology leadership, solutions, and innovation to all levels of Texas government. She also serves as the Chief Information Officer for Texas state government.
Prior to leading the team at DIR, she served at the Office of the Attorney General of Texas for more than 17 years. She held various positions at the OAG, including ultimately serving for two and a half years as the Deputy Attorney General for Administration and General Counsel, overseeing the administrative and general counsel divisions of the office. In that role, she directed the daily business operations of an agency of more than 4,300 employees with offices across the state, while also serving as General Counsel and leading the Open Records, Public Finance, and General Counsel Divisions. Additionally, since she joined the OAG in 1999, she has served as the Associate Deputy Attorney General for Legal Counsel and General Counsel, the Chief and Deputy Chief of the Open Records Division, a drafting attorney in the Open Records Division, and the OAG's Public Information Coordinator.
Tom Kellermann, Head of Cyber Security, VMWare
Tom Kellermann is the Head of Cybersecurity Strategy for VMware Inc. Previously Tom held the position of Chief Cybersecurity Officer for Carbon Black Inc. Prior to joining Carbon Black, Tom was the CEO and founder of Strategic Cyber Ventures. In 2020, he was appointed to the Cyber Investigations Advisory Board for the United States Secret Service. In 2017, Tom was appointed the Wilson Center's Global Fellow for Cyber Policy. Tom previously held the positions of Chief Cybersecurity Officer for Trend Micro; Vice President of Security for Core Security and Deputy CISCO for the World Bank Treasury. In 2008 Tom was appointed a commissioner on the Commission on Cyber Security for the 44th President of the United States. In 2003 he co-authored the Book "Electronic Safety and Soundness: Securing Finance in a New Age."
Doug Robinson, Executive Director, National Association of State Chief Information Officers
Doug Robinson has served as Executive Director of the National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO) since 2004. Founded in 1969, NASCIO is the only national organization representing state chief information officers of the fifty states and territories. He is responsible for the overall executive leadership of the association including strategic plan and policy execution, government affairs, strategic alliances, emerging issues and board and committee oversight. He also provides strategic direction for NASCIO's initiatives and advocacy positions on issues such as cybersecurity, enterprise architecture, IT governance, information sharing and business innovation. Doug is a frequent speaker, panelist, author and recognized national expert representing state CIOs, policy issues, priorities and trends in state government IT. His career spans almost forty years in public sector information technology including positions in state government, higher education and IT consulting. Prior to joining NASCIO he served as Executive Director in the Governor's Office for Technology, Commonwealth of Kentucky.
Jim Weaver, Secretary & State Chief Information Officer (North Carolina)
James "Jim" Weaver joined the N.C. Department of Information Technology in March 2021, with more than 30 years of leadership and management in the IT industry. As Secretary and State Chief Information Officer, he leads the agency responsible for strategic IT planning and the procurement and delivery of IT services and solutions as well as cybersecurity and efforts to expand broadband access and affordability across North Carolina. Prior to NCDIT, Weaver served as Director and State CIO at Washington Technology Solutions. In that role, he strengthened the department and the state enterprise by focusing on efficiency, consistency and continuous improvement; driving business alignment; balancing operations and policy; and seeking quicker adoption of newer technology. Weaver was also Chief Technology Officer for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, where he held Chief Technology Officer and Deputy CIO roles in Pennsylvania's Departments of Human Services, Aging and Insurance. As Secretary, Weaver chairs the North Carolina Information Technology Strategy Board. He also serves on the several committees for the NASCIO, including its executive committee and broadband advisory group. He also co-chairs the Enterprise Architecture Committee.
Breakout Session: Innovation & Evolution in the Insurance Marketplace (11:30 am - 12:30 pm)
Emory Wilkerson, Associate General Counsel, State Farm Insurance Companies
Emory Wilkerson is Associate General Counsel and Lead Attorney for the Law Department Southeastern Office of the State Farm Insurance Companies. The office is responsible for State Farm's legislative and regulatory activities in the states of Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, and Tennessee.
Emory began his practice of law as an insurance defense litigator with the law firm of Darroch and Obenshain in Atlanta, Georgia in 1988. After a short stint as a solo practitioner, Emory joined the Atlanta Claim Litigation Counsel (CLC) office of State Farm Insurance Companies. While at the Atlanta CLC Office, Emory tried numerous jury trial cases with a 100 percent win record. In 1994, Emory transferred to State Farm's corporate headquarters in Bloomington, Illinois, where he served as a Zone Attorney, supervising the managing attorneys for seven CLC offices in the Northeastern states. He joined the legislative / regulatory section of State Farm's Corporate Law Department in 1996. During his tenure as a member of the legislative / regulatory section, he represented State Farm before the state legislatures and insurance departments in Arkansas, Louisiana, Virginia, North Carolina, and New York. Emory is a native of Georgia. He earned both an undergraduate and graduate degree from Emory University, Atlanta, GA. He earned his Juris Doctorate degree from Mercer University Law School, Macon, GA, and a MA in Christian Leadership from Dallas Theological Center, Dallas, TX. Emory has earned both the Chartered Property Casualty Underwriters (CPCU) and Associate in Reinsurance (ARe) insurance designations. In 2014 Emory was awarded the SGAC Professional Development Certificate. Currently, he serves as President on the Executive Board of The State Government Affairs Council (SGAC), the premier national association for multi-state government affairs professionals of major U.S. corporations, trade associations and service providers. Emory is past private sector co-chair of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) Commerce, Insurance, & Economic Development Task Force. He was awarded the ALEC Private Sector Member of the Year Award in 2012. Emory resides in Fayetteville, GA where he attends the Olivet Church and serves in the College of Ministers. Emory has been married for over 37 years to his lovely wife Laura, and they are the parents of four adult daughters, two sons-in-law, and one graddaughter.
Speakers - Tuesday, November 23
General Session: Political Perspective - Eugene Robinson (8:30 am - 10:00 am)
Eugene Robinson, Pulitzer Prize-winning Columnist, The Washington Post and Political Analyst, MSNBC
Eugene Robinson is on the front lines of news coverage every day. He is a twice-weekly, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist for The Washington Post who is syndicated in 145 newspapers across the nation and is a prominent commentator on MSNBC. With an innate ability to cut through the clutter and provide clarity on today's events, Robinson's insights are free of the usual inside-the-beltway jargon. While media outlets may be tempted to churn out news served on a platter by candidates and companies, Robinson takes a step back not only to look at the big picture, but to focus on deeds - not just words. Whether he's assessing politicians, cliff-hanging events on Wall Street or handicapping elections, he reminds us that politics may not be for the faint of heart but sure can be fun to watch.