About this event:

The inaugural IT Leaders’ Festival is all about the experience of you and your team. Inspired by your peers , Computing has created a three-day festival that holds each individual at the core . Sit at your desk, on the sofa, or relax in the garden to settle in for one of our ‘big picture’ keynotes and browse the agenda to find the key sessions you don’t want to miss. Perhaps you’ll join an interactive workshop to trial the tech you’ve been meaning to learn about. After, you can chat with your colleagues and peers in our online networking area to discuss the challenges, concerns and transformations that COVID-19 has bought your IT department.

Join us at the first ever IT Leaders’ Festival on 20th – 22nd October from the comfort of your own home (we heard the coffee was better there!) Built by IT Leaders, for IT Leaders . Through a range of keynotes, case studies, panel discussions, workshops and much more it’s a fantastic opportunity to collaborate, network and resolve your IT challenges with your peers.

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Speakers

Ade McCormack

Ade McCormack

Founder, Digital Readiness Institute

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Ade McCormack is a former technologist who today is focused on helping organisations and societies thrive in the digital age.
He has worked in around forty countries across many sectors. His focus is largely on leadership. He has lectured at MIT Sloan School of Management on digital leadership and currently works with Cambridge University on their executive education programmes.
Ade is a former FT and CIO columnist, as well as having been a former CIO100 judge. He has written six books on digital matters. He is also the founder of the Digital Readiness Institute (www.dri.guide).
His work focuses around creating super-resilient organisations. In respect of public speaking, his anthropological and cognitive management perspectives are considering educational, engaging and entertaining.

Alex Denley

Alex Denley

Director of Innovation and Transformation, London South Bank University

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Alex Denley is Director of Innovation and Transformation at London South Bank University. A multi award winning senior IT leader and visionary, noted for his disruptive stance and approach to transforming the way his students interact with technology. Alex has overall accountability on technology modernisation spend for one of London’s top Universities, aligning strategy with benefits realisation to achieve his goals. A member of the UK Governance Board for BETT, being a Judge for the UK Business Awards and also ranking within the accredited CIO 100.
With over 16 years of experience, he has led the technology teams for some of the most exciting visitor attractions in the UK, including the prestigious London Eye. Combined with experience in running technology programs for Barclays Investment Bank and delivering 5 star experiences within London’s thriving hospitality market. He has leveraged technology to modernise, transform and innovate; striving for world-class customer service with operational efficiencies at the forefront.

Amie Zhou

Amie Zhou

Head of Business Office, Worldline UK&I

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Amie joined Worldline as a PMO apprentice in 2014 and in 6 years she has progressed through different roles in the organisation including as PM in successfully delivering a number of high profile and strategic projects. Amie is currently working towards a Chartered Manager CMgr (MCMI) status and recently, Amie has been promoted to Head of Business Office where she’ll be leading a team of 7 providing support for the delivery organisation and driving the change to improve co-ordination between different teams within the business to achieve better on-time delivery for projects and services.
Apprenticeships are a great alternative to going straight to University and Amie has been a keen advocate for apprenticeship schemes. She led the Atos and Worldline team in the 2016 Apprentice Brathay Challenge winning two awards, ‘Highly Commended Team Leader’ and ‘Outstanding Community Project’, worked with other apprentices to promote apprenticeships to businesses and presented at schools to encourage more young people to consider this route.

Chris Storey

Chris Storey

Head of Technology, Yachts and Le Boat

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Chris is an experienced digital and technology leader, with 15 years of experience across different industries including Telco, Retail and Travel. Despite not being able to write a line of code, Chris started his career at consultancy SapientNitro, before spending 5 years at Sainsbury's leading technology enabled change programmes across HR, Trading, Logistics and Supply Chain.
For the last 5 years, Chris has worked for Travelopia, the KKR private equity backed collection of specialist travel brands, which until 2018 was part of travel giant TUI. Chris is currently the Head of Technology for the Yachts and Le Boat businesses, with responsibility for driving an ambitious technology agenda for the largest Yacht & Boat charter companies in the world (Sunsail, The Moorings, Leopard Catamarans, Le Boat.)

David Germain

David Germain

Group Chief Information Officer, RSA Group

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David is RSA’s Group, UK & I CIO and leads the long-term technology / transformation vision. He is responsible for transforming both the way that IT is operated and how it interfaces with the overall business. Including reshaping new ways of improving the customer experience and optimising business performance.
Prior to joining RSA, David worked for a number of world leading Banking institutions in C-suite roles. 2020 FDM everywoman in Technology Woman in Technology panel judge.
David was voted Top 10 BAME (UK Black, Asian and minority ethnic individuals who are driving change) leader influencing the technology sector in 2019 by the Financial Times.
2019 Finalist at the ITA Awards and British Black Business Awards in the STEM (Science, Technology, English and Maths) category.

Hayley Addison

Hayley Addison

Lead Product Owner, Department for Work and Pensions

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Hayley is the Lead Product Owner in the Intelligent Automation Garage (IAG), a Digital Group function in the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). A founding member of IAG, Hayley is responsible for leading the roadmap and teams, driving transformation and delivering “Intelligent Automation” technologies (such as RPA, Machines Learning and Chatbots) across the Department, running these as business critical live services. IAG’s position as an industry leader in Intelligent Automation means that Hayley and her teams are recognised as best practice experts in this area.
Prior to this role in IAG, Hayley held roles in digital project/service delivery across DWP as well as senior commercial roles in the digital space, providing commercial strategy and support to major Government and digital initiatives.

Professor Huseyin Seker

Professor Huseyin Seker

Associate Dean (Research & Enterprise), School of Computing and Digital Technologies, Staffordshire University

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Huseyin is a research-oriented and enterprise-focused academic and manager with both academic and industry experiences in data science, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and emerging & disruptive technologies/systems. He has published over 100 peer-reviewed articles and has been involved with a portfolio of collaborative research, enterprise and teaching/learning projects of over £20M as PI, Co-I and international researcher in collaboration with universities and companies in the UK and abroad. He was one of the founding members of the Institute of Coding and lead its activities at Northumbria University until September 2019.
He previously worked as a Reader/Assoc Professor and Director of Enterprise and Engagement for the Department of Computer and Information Sciences at Northumbria University and Faculty Head of Research Operations for the Faculty of Technology at De Montfort University.

John Leonard

John Leonard

Group Research Director, Incisive Media

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John Leonard is Group Research Director for the Enterprise Technology Group at Incisive Media. He has designed and conducted research studies and analyses covering many of the aspects of business technology that are driving the way we live and work today.

John Rakowski

John Rakowski

VP Strategy, LogicMonitor

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John Rakowski, VP of Strategy, joined LogicMonitor in December 2019. He is responsible for the alignment of LogicMonitor's go to market functions, including sales, marketing, product and customer success. John has nearly 20 years of monitoring solution experience and started off as an engineer working with monitoring products back in 2001. Prior to LogicMonitor he was at AppDynamics and before that was lead analyst for monitoring and analytics at Forrester Research.

Jon Howard

Jon Howard

Executive Product Manager, BBC Design and Engineering

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Jon Howard is a digital executive in his 14th year of developing innovative and educational digital products at the BBC - working closely with brands from Doctor Who to Radio One and CBeebies to Bitesize to bring the potential of new technologies to large audiences. Over the last three years, Jon has dedicated his attentions to the challenge of using emerging deep learning and AI tech to support children as they take their first personal steps with smartphones - delivering the ground-breaking and multi-award-winning Own It App.

Laura Dawson

Laura Dawson

Director, Data and Technology Services, London School of Economics

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Laura Dawson is Director, Data and Technology Services at the London School of Economics and Political Science. She has been a leader in the Charity and Not for Profit sector for nearly 30 years including RSPB, Save the Children UK and British Council. She is an advocate for ensuring that we get the value out of data and ensuring that technology is making a difference to our beneficiaries which is why she has been a Trustee of Charity IT Leaders. A long standing Watford FC season ticket holder, she has learnt to manage her expectations, expertly.

Marina Brilleman

Marina Brilleman

Global Business Analysis IT Manager, British American Tobacco

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Marina is a Global Business Analysis IT Manager in BAT. Her international career spans across Russia, Germany, Singapore and UK and she fluently speaks languages of those countries. Love for optimisation and structure topped up with the International Management Master’s degree and passion for art giving Marina a powerful mix for creative problem solving. Within her team she instils the idea that nothing is impossible.
In her current role Marina has championed the potentially risk-reduced products as a step-changing addition to the traditional tobacco business in BAT. Overseeing IT side of this start-up within the corporation, she was instrumental in defining the operating model and data structures, lately integrating new generation products into the overall company business, and finally launching B2C e-commerce platform as a service.
Marina is delighted to be judging the 2020 nominees for the Cloud Excellence Awards. The sky's the limit!

Dr Muhannad Alomari

Dr Muhannad Alomari

Head of London AI Hub, Rolls-Royce

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Dr. Muhannad Alomari is the head of the London AI Hub in Rolls-Royce. In his current role, he is leading a team of AI specialists and developers, working on introducing state of the art AI and Machine Learning algorithms into Rolls-Royce. The challenges tackled by Muhannad’s team are some of the most exciting and challenging engineering problems in the world. Utilising the state-of-the-art in artificial intelligence research to advance the engineering designs of aircraft engines and nuclear power plants; whilst, advancing the digital capabilities for Rolls-Royce.
Dr. Muhannad completed his PhD in AI & Robotics from the School of Computing, University of Leeds. His research on advancing the boundaries of Natural Language Processing capabilities for robotic agents was awarded the highly prestigious EurAI Distinguished Dissertation Award in 2017, by the European Association for Artificial Intelligence; and awarded the Research Excellence Award from the University of Leeds. Muhannad’s research interests are in Natural Language Processing and Understanding, Deep Learning, Robotics and Computer Vision. Moreover, Muhannad authored thirteen papers in the field of Machine Learning; for which he received a number of Best Paper Awards from top AI and ML conference around the world.

Neil Walker

Neil Walker

Chief Architect, Covea Insurance Digital

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Neil has worked in IT and digital roles for 25 years, from early 90’s SGML first online internet solutions to current Head of Architecture role with Covea. He has defined and shaped strategy for Enterprise Architecture, SOA and Cloud. This included transformation approaches and innovations to establish next generation platform solutions. Neil’s specialised in a number of IT areas, with SOA being one of his key specialities.
Neil spent 15 years working on strategy and architecture for distributed computing and has worked across a variety of sectors including Banking, Insurance, HealthCare, Manufacturing, Logistics, Mobile and Government. He has also spent some time working as a consultant in America, India and Europe, and have now been at Covea for 3 years as Chief Architect.

Paul Davison

Paul Davison

Head of Data, Royal Mail

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Paul is currently Head of Data at Royal Mail and has recently been recognised by DataIQ as one of the Top 100 most influential people in data and by HotTopics.ht and Truata as one of the Global Top 100 Data Visionaries. He is passionate about helping businesses get the most from their own data and the data solutions available in the market. Paul is an advocate of the use of data for good and has worked with organisations of all sizes enabling them to understand the value data can bring to their business. Prior to this role with Royal Mail, Paul held roles in data and marketing as well as senior commercial roles and has over 20 years’ experience in these areas.

Rachel Skelton

Rachel Skelton

Junior Software Engineer, Covea Insurance

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Rachel is a creative junior software engineer at Covéa Insurance, from studying Computing at both college and university to getting involved with the ever-evolving Leeds tech community. Rachel supports the tech community buzz by voluntary teaching Code First Girls classes, co-hosting Leeds Frontend meetup and organising other free community events for everyone in tech and those who want to get into tech. Following this, Rachel set up her personal blog, started her public speaking journey, and stepped into her first management and mentoring role, whilst beginning to study the ILM Level 3 course in Leadership and Management at Covéa Insurance.

Rob Price

Rob Price

Head of Commercial Software, HP Inc.

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COO & Deputy CEO, Worldline UK&I, also on twitter as @the_digital_COO. Rob has led the integration of a Digital mindset in the operational running of the UK payments business, bringing a love of emerging technologies together with transforming the ways in which we work. In previous roles as CDO for Atos in the UK, and Consulting Partner, he led Digital Transformation in international organisations whilst also publishing a series of blogs and papers on lessons from that work. In 2014-15, he helped the MCA with their Year of Digital, defining “What is Digital?”. In 2016, he was listed in the top 50 Digital Transformation influencers in the world by Onalytica. In 2018 he published a paper on Digital Society, and launched Corporate Digital Responsibility, helping organisations understand there was a wider responsibility they had in engaging all parts of society.
Over the past five years, Rob has recruited 70 apprentices into the UK business, putting in place ongoing development programmes to accelerate their progress in the business. Last year, he launched the first apprenticeship also focused on legacy technologies such as COBOL, recognising that there are still many legacy systems not yet phased out or replaced, and a wave of retirements due to happen imminently. He has also launched the first leadership apprenticeship, focused on existing employees at a turning point in their career, which he has delivered with Raise the Bar.

Stuart Sumner

Stuart Sumner

Editorial Director, Computing and Delta

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Stuart Sumner is Editorial Director of Incisive Media's technology-focused titles: Computing and Delta. He oversees all content across print, web, tablet editions, rich media and events - including the IT Leaders' Dining Club and Computing Summits. During Stuart's tenure Computing has transformed from a print-reliant business to a bleeding edge multi-channel brand with an industry-leading events portfolio. Previously he spent 10 years as a programme manager in the IT industry, working for companies such as the BBC, COLT, Nortel Networks and Equant. As a journalist he has also worked for Time Out and IPC Media. He is a regular technology pundit and contributor to the BBC News Channel, as well as a published author.

Tony Johnson

Tony Johnson

(Prev) Senior Vice President International I.T, 20th Century Fox

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Tony is a passionate advocate of the power for technology to achieve truly transformative results when implemented with a business and user centric focus.
He has successfully built and led large, international technology teams in both the retail and media sectors. Most recently he was responsible for the International (everything outside of North America) Technology group at 20th Century Fox.
During his time at Fox, Tony oversaw digital, data and cloud transformation initiatives that equipped the International business teams to successfully evolve in a constantly changing and disrupted industry landscape.

Trevor Gordon

Trevor Gordon

Global Director of Omni-Channel Retail, Sodexo

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Trevor Gordon is currently Global Director of Omni-Channel Retail at Sodexo (Sodexo is a Global Services company that operates in 72 countries and serves over 100 million customers a day). A strategic commercial and digital leader who consistently delivers results through innovative use of customer insight, data, and technology to drive growth and improvement in highly challenging conditions. He has extensive global experience across a wide range of sectors and high-profile brands on both client and agency side. Proven success in accelerating and facilitating change and transformation, his experience covers all aspects of digital transformation: digital marketing, digital operations, digital technology innovation. Recent focus has been on delivering top and bottom-line growth by developing new customer strategies, experiences, propositions, products, solutions, services and business models for the digital age.

Kimberley Robinson

Kimberley Robinson

Founder, Keep Real

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Kimberley Robinson is an award nominated mental health activist, creator and founder of Keep Real. Recently named in the UK Top 100 Women in Social Enterprise, Kimberley’s focus lies on inclusive health and wellbeing campaigns and projects in the UK; from utilising her degree in Counselling by running mental health workshops and facilitating live music events with her business Keep Real, to consulting on wellbeing projects to support further access to mental health support. With clients who have included Mind, Twitter, Sky UK, NHS Leeds, The Women’s Org and more under her belt, Kimberley lends her activism and empathic approach to a milieu of wellbeing ventures.

Dana Aonofriesei

Dana Aonofriesei

Director of Engineering, Trustpilot

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Dana started her career in Software Development 9 years ago and during this time she tried different roles and assignments, as Quality Assurance Engineer, Software Analyst, Scrum Master, Head of Product Quality, Engineering Manager in areas like banking, eprocurement, trust economy. Dana loves working with teams, driving teams and individuals towards results and solving problems. A few keywords that describe her: sports, croissants, cheese, good coffee, competitive, positive.

Dan Gilbert

Dan Gilbert

Director of Data, News UK

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At News UK (The Times, The Sun, Wireless Group etc) Dan looks after the teams who use machine learning and data to inform and power the digital product, marketing and advertising experience of customers, build innovative tools for the newsrooms and govern the effective and ethical use of data.

Before that Dan was a data scientist / consultant working for News Corp, and got into data science and visualisation whilst working in a social media startup and the UK government as the field was becoming established. Prior to that – unaware of what to do with a degree in economics and public policy – he worked in the risk and strategy teams at Visa, helping banks in Africa and Europe manage credit card fraud and prepare for the move to cashless payments.

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