CONFERENCE SPEAKER BIOGRAPHIES

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Corey Adams

Corey Adams

Education Program Manager
Universal Robots

Based in Columbus, Ohio, Corey Adams has nearly 10 years in industrial automation industry experience. He has worked in business development with Universal Robots for two years, and now specializes in Education as the educational program manager.

Prior to joining Universal Robots, Corey worked in project management and technical sales for an industrial manufacturing distributor and robot integrator. He served honorably in the U.S. Coast Guard and holds MBA Degrees from Keller University in Finance and Marketing

Session(s):

Educator Day
LUNCHEON PANEL DISCUSSION: Preparing our Workforce for Smart Manufacturing Careers | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 11:45 AM


Sina Afrooze

Sina Afrooze

CEO & Co-Founder
Apera AI

Sina is a technical entrepreneur in artificial intelligence, machine learning and systems engineering, with more than 20 years of experience. He was a founding engineer at Avigilon, an innovator in the surveillance market acquired by Motorola for U.S.$1.2 billion. He was then a major contributor to the SageMaker Reinforcement Learning service used to train AI for robotic simulation at Amazon Web Services (AWS). He holds 10 patents in the fields of AI, digital imaging, image processing, and media streaming. Sina holds a Bachelor of Systems Engineering from Simon Fraser University.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Deploying AI to Retrofit Manual and Vision-Guided Robotic Processes in the Automotive Industry | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Gretchen Alper

Gretchen Alper

Business Director
AT - Automation Technology, Inc.

Gretchen Alper is the Business Director for the new North American subsidiary of AT-Automation Technology. With two decades of experience in metrology and vision applications, she brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her role. Her primary responsibilities include promoting AT's innovative products within the North American market and providing support to local customers.

Gretchen is dedicated to collaborating with Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) to enhance their measurement accuracy and throughput. This underscores her commitment to advancing technology and helping businesses achieve greater efficiency and precision in their operations. Her extensive background in metrology and vision applications positions her well to lead AT-Automation Technology's efforts in North America and contribute to the success of the company's customers in the region.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Revolutionizing Industrial Metrology: How Advanced 3D Laser Sensors Are Changing the Game | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Joshua Alphonse

Joshua Alphonse

Head of Mobile Robotics US
ABB Inc.

Josh Alphonse is the Head of Mobile Robotics for ABB in the US. He is responsible for the business leadership, segment management, and customer focused growth initiatives in the United States.

Josh was named to the Mobile Robotics leadership role in 2023. He joined ABB in 2017 as a Manager of Field Service, later stood up the first Project Management Office for the business, and then moved on to lead the Electronics Business Line focusing on automation solutions for the electronics manufacturing industry. Prior to ABB, he was an Officer in the United State Marine Corps serving in the Infantry and Special Operations community.

Josh holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Electrical Engineering from Kettering University and a Master of Science degree in Corporate Finance from Southern New Hampshire University. Josh lives in Detroit and enjoys home improvement, physical fitness, and spending time with his wife and three girls.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
AI Enabled AMR Navigation Technology | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 3:00 PM


James Anderson

James Anderson

Digital Business Consultant - Vision and Quality Control
SICK

Jim has been working in the automation industry for over 20 years with the last 15 concentrating on machine vision.  He has worked in many different phases of the application cycle.  In the earlier years he worked as an application specialist helping companies use 3d technology to solve some of their more difficult applications.   He then moved into the product manager role and helped bring many imaging based products to the market in both the machine vision and the industrial code reading sections of the business.  Over the last handful of years he has worked on the end-to-end project delivery that many customers are looking for in the imaging segment of automation especially in the area of vision guided robotics, with applications ranging from bin picking to navigation.  Jim has also been an active member of the A3 and has presented information about 3D vision at shows and conferences including the CVP program.  He has also served as a member of the Automate trade show committee since it transitioned from the Robot and Vision show years ago.  Jim also brings a unique perspective to the board as he and the SICK organization are members of all three of original groups of the A3, AIA,RIA and the MCMA.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
3D Vision System Development | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Kence Anderson

Kence Anderson

CEO & Co-Founder
Composabl, Inc.

Kence Anderson teaches Autonomous AI design and consults enterprises on how to build their autonomous systems organizations and practices. He was previously director of Autonomous AI Adoption at Microsoft. Kence has pioneered uses for Autonomous AI in industry and designed over 150 autonomous decision-making AI systems for large enterprises.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Introduction to Industrial AI for Automation | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 8:00 AM
Designing Autonomous AI Agents | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Gerard Andrews

Gerard Andrews

Product Marketing, Robotics
NVIDIA

Gerard Andrews is a Head of Product Marketing for Robotics and is focused on revolutionizing the way intelligent robots are developed, trained, tested, and deployed through driving the adoption of the NVIDIA Isaac Robotics platform. Prior to joining NVIDIA, Gerard was at Cadence where he was Product Marketing Director, responsible for product planning, marketing, and business development for licensable processor IP. He holds an MS in electrical engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology and a BS in electrical engineering from Southern Methodist University.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
ChatGPT, Simulation & Beyond: How AI Advances Are Changing What’s Possible | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 12:30 PM


Juan Luis Aparicio Ojea

Juan Luis Aparicio Ojea

CEO
Reshape Automation

Juan is a robotics and automation enthusiast on a mission to scale and democratize access to robotics technology in manufacturing and beyond. During his career he has brought together the worlds of Industrial Automation, Robotics, and AI with his work featured in the New York Times, MIT Tech Review, Wired, Forbes, TheRobotReport, and other media outlets. Juan is the founder and CEO of Reshape Automation, a company that is directly targeting the labor shortage in manufacturing with an innovative approach to design, deploy and support industrial automation and robotics cells. Before that, he was the VP of product at Rapid Robotics, a Robotics as a Service startup where Rapid Machine Operators (RMOs) could be hired by subscription. Prior to Rapid, Juan was the VP of Product at Ready Robotics, where he launched Forge/OS 5, an award-winning industrial platform for robots and automation. Before that, Juan was the Head of Advanced Manufacturing Automation for Siemens, where he led a top team of researchers and engineers in Berkeley, California, working elbow-to-elbow with renowned academic partners. Juan is a Technical Advisor for the Advanced Robotic in Manufacturing (ARM), a member of A3’s AI Tech Strategy Board, and a Skydeck advisor. In 2019, he was awarded the MIT Tech Review Innovator under 35 Europe in the Pioneer category. In 2020, he was awarded Siemens Inventor of the year and the prestigious Thomas Alva Edison Patent Award.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
The Generative AI in Automation: Automating the Tasks That You Least Expect! | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 4:15 PM


Darcy Bachert

Darcy Bachert

Founder and CEO
Prolucid

Darcy Bachert is the founder and CEO of Prolucid, a software engineering company and certified A3 vision systems integrator specializing in the development of custom data collection, computer vision, machine learning, and cloud applications ranging from proof of concept through full software commercialization. Prolucid supports customers in a variety of regulated industries including medical device software, helping automate and improve a wide variety of diagnostic, therapeutic, and laboratory processes. 

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
The Future of Automation in Healthcare, Medicine & Pharmaceuticals | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 10:30 AM


David Bader

David Bader

VP of Business Development
Eurotech

Dave Bader is a seasoned professional with over three decades of experience in robotics and automation. As a Vice President of Business Development at Eurotech, he brings a wealth of knowledge and a distinguished career history that spans across leading organizations in the industry. Dave has been instrumental in several automation revolutions, including the evangelism of Artificial Intelligence at the Edge, Industrial IoT, and Autonomous Mobile Robotics for industrial and warehouse applications.

In addition to his numerous leadership roles, Dave has made a significant impact by actively helping customers understand and address ever-evolving cybersecurity risks. With his unique ability to convey highly technical solutions, he bridges the gap between technical and non-technical audiences, ensuring that clients receive comprehensive support and guidance in navigating the complex landscape of cybersecurity. Dave is excited to lend his considerable expertise to inform next-generation technologies and solutions.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Designing for Tomorrow’s Cybersecurity Challenges | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Dan Bagley

Dan Bagley

Founder & Principal
StrategicInk - BBML

Dan Bagley is the Founder & Principal for Strategic Ink. His body of work includes development and application of super-hard materials, hydraulics, automation, cutting tools and engineered software. He has 8 patents, and several pending with clients in advanced metal cutting, friction materials, and operator assistance technology. He is also the founder of B&B Management Labs, LLC and former chairman of Cepstral Voice Technologies, and the inventor the Athena digital assistant. Dan is a veteran US Navy Nuclear Power instructor, serving aboard fast attack submarines and nuclear prototype facilities. He has held Vice President of Sales and/or Marketing Positions with General Signal Pump Group, Bosch Fluid Power, and Sophus Berendsen USA. He was CEO of Unimerco USA, Chief Marketing Officer for Kennametal, and a Director in the Deloitte Consulting Manufacturing practice, based in Chicago. Dan is active in the National Fluid Power Association, AMT, Helicopter Assn Int'l, NBAA and Water Environmental Federation, among others. He has worked globally for many years, in more than 75 countries.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Digital Fluid Power – Advances & Controls in Hydraulics & Pneumatics | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Saeed Bakhshmand

Saeed Bakhshmand

AI & ML Manager
Musashi AI North America

Saeed Bakhshmand is an AI & ML Manager at Musashi AI North America, where he leads the development of innovative AI solutions for automated visual inspection. With a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from The University of Western Ontario, Saeed has a solid foundation in computer vision, deep learning, and medical image analysis. His expertise is instrumental in advancing Musashi AI's mission to enhance quality control processes through cutting-edge technology.

Before his current role, Saeed excelled as a Senior Research Engineer and AI Engineer, contributing significantly to the fields of video and image processing. His work has led to patented technologies that improve manufacturing quality control, demonstrating his commitment to creating human-centric solutions that augment human work.

Saeed's philosophy of "human jobs for humans" drives his approach to technology, making him a compelling speaker on AI, engineering, and the integration of human values in technological advancements.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
AI-Driven Manufacturing Excellence: Mastering Cendiant Quality Insights Technologies for Superior Production Oversight | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 3:45 PM


Joseph Baldiga

Joseph Baldiga

National Education Account Manager
FANUC America

Joe Baldiga is the National Education Account Manager at FANUC America Corporation. With over two decades of experience, Joe is familiar with all aspects of the FANUC world; from his humble beginnings in the FANUC Receiving Department, Joe has worked his way up the ranks and held positions in Customer Service, Field Service, Inside Sales, Training Instructor, New Business Development, Marketing, and now Education.

Joe credits his time in the FANUC Training Department and the launch of FANUC’s CERT Program for igniting his passion for education. As technology advanced at a rapid pace, there emerged a growing divide between the demand for skilled workers and the available talent pool. Determined to address this challenge head-on, Joe and the Certified Education Training (CERT) Team have dedicated themselves to nurturing the next generation of manufacturing talent. Joe is a great advocate for vocational education and apprenticeship programs, recognizing the importance of hands-on training to prepare individuals for careers in advanced manufacturing.

Through mentorship initiatives, outreach programs, and collaboration with educational institutions and industry partners, Joe hopes to inspire young minds and ignite a passion for manufacturing innovation. Joe champions diversity and inclusivity in the industry, striving to create opportunities for underrepresented groups and empower individuals from all walks of life. Joe believes automation education empowers individuals with the means to support themselves and their families and plays a vital role in building a more equitable society by fostering upward mobility for all. Joe is committed to building a brighter future for the manufacturing industry and inspiring the next generation of talent to dream big and reach even greater heights.

Session(s):

Educator Day
LUNCHEON PANEL DISCUSSION: Preparing our Workforce for Smart Manufacturing Careers | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 11:45 AM


Suprateek Banerjee

Suprateek Banerjee

Head of Standardization, Robotics and Automation
VDMA e.V.

Dr. Suprateek Banerjee is the Head of OPC UA and I 4.0 at VDMA’s Robotics and Automation (R+A) Sector Group. He is responsible for the development of OPC UA Companion Specifications for the Robotics and Automation industry sector which include OPC UA for Robotics, Machine Vision and Industrial Joining Technologies among others. He represents VDMA R+A in various Industry 4.0 harmonization activities, both within the VDMA and at the OPC Foundation level, developing standards and best practices for seamless interoperability between machines from different sectors of the automation industry. Prior to joining the VDMA, Dr. Banerjee completed his Masters in Embedded Systems from the University of Stuttgart in Germany and thereafter has been a Marie Curie Fellow and has completed his PhD in the field of Industry 4.0 at the Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Updates on Machine Vision Standards | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 3:30 PM


Jessica Barnas

Jessica Barnas

Partner
Wipfli LLP

Jessica Barnas is a partner and a leader of our client accounting and advisory solutions team group, leveraging her in-depth knowledge of accounting software and financial processes and procedures as she guides our clients into the future, allowing them to focus on their core business.

  • Performing chief financial officer (CFO) and controller services for a wide range of clients
  • Partnering with business owners to help them build key performance indicators (KPI) and dashboards to better manage their business operations and focus on growth
  • Providing procedural documentation for companies looking to strengthen internal controls, succession planning and employee training, allowing them to ensure efficiency and reduce lost time from employee turnover

Arye Barnehama

Arye Barnehama

CEO
Elementary

Arye Barnehama, a Forbes 30 under 30 honoree from 2020’s manufacturing and industry list, is the CEO of Elementary, which is developing a new generation of quality vision inspection that uses visual AI and machine learning to automate the inspection of products for defects or other problems in manufacturing.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Advances in AI-Powered Machine Vision Inspection | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Dan Barrera

Dan Barrera

Sales Product Manager
Bosch Rexroth

Dan is a passionate and experienced industrial leader in automation solutions, Internet of Things (IoT), digital twin, AI, communication and their application in industrial manufacturing. He has extensive experience in product management, project management, industrial automation solutions, marketing, business development, digital business transformation and strong management/leadership skills.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Digital Fluid Power – Advances & Controls in Hydraulics & Pneumatics | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Jaron Bass

Jaron Bass

International Trade Specialist
Office of Transportation and Machinery, International Trade Administration

Jaron Bass is an International Trade Specialist with the International Trade Administration’s (ITA) Office of Transportation and Machinery (OTM). OTM’s objective is to support the U.S. industrial base by developing and recommending U.S. policy positions for multilateral and bilateral discussions that ensure U.S. companies are safeguarded from unfair trading practices; providing information, trade data, and industry analysis to the U.S. business community, policymakers, and trade negotiators; maintaining close liaison with U.S. firms to focus and construct programs that enhance U.S. industry's competitiveness; and providing export assistance, including advocacy and business counseling, to help companies penetrate new markets, increase market share, and resolve specific market obstacles.

In OTM, Jaron manages the development of ITA’s advanced manufacturing portfolio, which includes industrial automation, robotics, additive manufacturing, advanced materials, and related digital services.

Before joining ITA in 2016, Jaron completed his graduate studies at American University’s School of International Service and served as a Program Coordinator at the Washington College of Law’s Clinical Program.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Global Business Opportunities for Automation Panel, followed by the International Trade Reception | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 4:00 PM


Billy Beane
KEYNOTE SPEAKER

Billy Beane

Former Executive Vice President of the Oakland Athletics

Billy Beane, now senior adviser to Oakland Athletics owner John Fisher, has molded the team into one of baseball’s most consistent winners since taking over as General Manager following the 1997 season. Eventually rising to the role of Executive Vice President of Baseball Operations, Beane shattered traditional MLB beliefs that high payrolls equated wins by implementing a data-driven methodology that led the Oakland A’s, with one of the lowest payrolls, to 7 AL Western Division titles and 10 playoff appearances. That strategic methodology has come to be known as the “Moneyball” philosophy, named for the best-selling book and Oscar-nominated film chronicling Beane’s journey from General Manager to hero to celebrated management genius. Beane is a four-time Major League Baseball "Executive of the Year" award winner and was named by Forbes as one of the "100 Greatest Living Business Minds."

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Session(s):

Automate Conference
Moneyball: Lessons for Life and Business from Baseball’s Best General Manager | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 9:00 AM


Amanda Beaton

Amanda Beaton

U.S. Program Manager
Siemens Cooperates with Education

Amanda Beaton has been with Siemens since 2003. As the U.S. Program Manager for Siemens Cooperates with Education (SCE), she is responsible for connecting academia to industry by facilitating the use of Siemens Factory Automation products in schools. In previous roles, she also created an apprentice program for field service technicians and managed a leadership development program for Siemens engineers and employees. Amanda started her career with Siemens in the Operations Leadership Development program and worked in manufacturing in Mexico and the U.S. She also served as a Project Manager and a Product Manager for Low Voltage and Energy Management product lines.  Amanda holds a Bachelor of Industrial and Systems Engineering from Georgia Tech and an MBA from Georgia State University.

Amanda sits on several industry advisory boards at colleges and universities across the US.  She is also a frequent STEM volunteer at her daughters’ middle and high schools. 

Session(s):

Educator Day
A3 Educator of the Year Award Presentation | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 1:45 PM


Ronnie Belcher

Ronnie Belcher

Product Training Engineer
Yaskawa America

With a degree in Electrical Engineering from ITT Technical Institute, Ronnie Belcher has been with Yaskawa America since 2012. Ronnie started out in the Drives Technical Support Engineer Group at Yaskawqa America. After 5 years he transitioned to the Motion Group Division as a technical support engineer and now works in the Motion Product Training Division as a Trainer. He has worked closely with the other trainers and product engineering groups to update current classes and create new eLearning videos. In his free time, Ronnie enjoys the outdoors on his electric longboard and boating.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Digital Servo Amplifier Basics | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 9:00 AM


Matt Berch

Matt Berch

Sr. Account Manager
Gudel Inc.

This presentation will be offered by Sr. Account Manager – Midwest, Matt Berch. Matt has Bachelor of Arts from Michigan State University and Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Wayne State University. He has worked for Gudel since 2013 and previously worked for Stanley Engineered Fastening in weld systems. He has a tremendous amount of experience in the robotics industry and is an expert in linear motion solutions including robot trackmotion, multi-axis gantries and custom design equipment.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Expanding Your Reach - Extending the Work Envelope for 6-axis Robots | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 3:15 PM


Sanjay Bhatia

Sanjay Bhatia

Director of Product
FairCom

Sanjay Bhatia, a visionary leader in the realm of product development, currently serves as the Director of Product at FairCom, where he skillfully orchestrates the vision, strategy, roadmap, and positioning of their IoT platform and the comprehensive product portfolio. His journey spanning two decades in the tech industry is marked by a fervent passion for creating and scaling technology products that profoundly impact customers and drive business success. This dedication extends to his adeptness in cultivating and leading teams that bring these innovative products to life.

Sanjay's enthusiasm for IoT and IIoT technologies took root during his tenure at one of the largest residential solar installation companies. It was here that he honed his expertise in developing applications that meticulously track and analyze a myriad of data points: from electricity production and consumption to the intricate import and export data from solar inverters. His work didn’t stop there; he also focused on the charging and discharging data from batteries. Central to his achievements was his strategic approach to collecting data in real-time using edge gateways, coupled with running intelligent analytics. This not only enhanced solar energy utilization for customers but also revolutionized overall home energy management.

His comprehensive understanding of IoT/ IIoT technologies and protocols and his innovative approach to data analytics make Sanjay Bhatia a distinguished figure in the field, driving forward the potential of smart technology in manufacturing.


Robert Bollinger

Robert Bollinger

Owner
Dynamic Horizons Automation Solutions LLC

Bob has over 35 years of experience in the creative application of robotics, collaborative robotics, mobile robotics, and automation technology to solve challenging problems and create business opportunity. Prior to founding Dynamic Horizons, Bob was a Technical Director for Applied Robotics Innovation at Procter & Gamble. There he identified new and innovative robotic technologies to leverage throughout the company. He was also responsible for setting technical direction and deploying global standard approaches for robotics within P&G. Bob is also an active member of several safety standards committees, including industrial robot standards RIA R15.06 the industrial mobile robot standard RIA R15.08.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Getting Started with Mobile Robotics | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 10:15 AM
Introduction to Mobile Robot Risk Assessment | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 2:15 PM


Bill Boucher

Bill Boucher

Partner
WIPFLI

Bill Boucher currently serves as Wipfli’s Manufacturing, Retail and Distribution Leader. In that role, he oversees a team of over 100 partners nationally who provide audit, tax and consulting services to businesses and individuals. Bill’s role is primarily focused on organic and M&A growth, increasing Wipfli’s awareness and value to clients and prospects.

With over 25 years of consulting experience, Bill’s expertise lies in working with business leaders to assess, improve, and scale business performance for his clients while aligning digital solutions to support growth and efficiency.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Manufacturer’s Back Office Intelligent Automation Creates Labor Efficiencies | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 2:15 PM


Collin Bristow

Collin Bristow

Territory Manager
LMI Technologies

Based in the Greater Toronto Area, Collin Bristow is the Territory Manager for Central and Eastern Canada for LMI Technologies. Collin has more than 10 years of experience providing hardware and software measurement solutions to a wide range of industries. Collin’s specialties include 2D and 3D vision solutions, image processing software and AI and Deep Learning.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
The Fusion of 3D Vision and AI in Inspecting Robotic Welds: A Paradigm Shift in Quality Control | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:15 AM


Robert Brodecki

Robert Brodecki

Application Portfolio Manager
KUKA Robotics Corp

With more than 6 years' experience in the industry, from small to large automation companies, I have experience with automation applications in industries ranging from food & beverage to metals & machining and many in between.  I've primarily held sales or business development and product management roles, with KUKA and Mitsubishi Electric Automation.  I particularly enjoy working with new technologies and partners to help manufacturers improve their processes and production.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Ecosystems - Unlocking Solutions via Partnerships | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 10:00 AM


David Bruce

David Bruce

Engineering Manager
FANUC America

Dave Bruce joined FANUC America Corporation (FAC) in 1997 and is currently an engineering manager in the General Industry & Automotive Segment for a group of engineers that support FANUC Robot integrators and end users with the application of FANUC’s fully integrated intelligent products. These intelligent products make it very easy for FANUC Robots to use machine vision (iRVision) and/or 6-Axis force control as part of any intelligent robotic system. He has a Master’s in Computer Science from Oakland University (Auburn Hills, MI) and a Bachelor’s in Electrical Engineering from the University of Windsor (Windsor, Ontario).

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Advanced Vision Guided Robotics | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Lacey Brugier

Lacey Brugier

Key Account Sales Manager
Agilox

Lacey is a key account sales manager and business development representative for Agilox North America with a background in chemical engineering. She has been with Agilox 1.5 years and covers accounts mostly within the southeast states.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Robots Unleashed: Why AMRs Are on the Rise and How AI Will Further Disrupt Production Logistics | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Martin Buehler

Martin Buehler

Distinguished Fellow, Robotics
Johnson & Johnson MedTech

Martin Buehler is a Distinguished Fellow, Robotics, for Johnson & Johnson MedTech. In this role, he is focusing on mentoring, inspiring, and developing the next generation of engineers and innovators within J&J MedTech. He is also leading outreach activities and fostering strategic partnerships with academic institutions, research organizations, and industry leaders to boost our talent pipelines. In addition, he advocates for J&J MedTech as a leader in the field of robotics and identifies opportunities for external collaboration. Most recently, Martin was the Global Head of Robotics R&D. He has a strong track record of inspirational leadership in technology innovation and diverse robotics experience across medical, industrial, consumer, food, agriculture, logistics, entertainment, and defense industries. He has technical expertise in the full robotics software and hardware technology stack and the unique ability to lead the design, development and productization of complex, multi-disciplinary systems. Previously, Martin was the Chief Technology Officer at Wavemaker Labs, and has held leadership roles at Medtronic, Walt Disney Imagineering, iRobot, and Boston Dynamics. Before joining industry, he held a tenured professorship in academia. Martin was named a Fellow of the IEEE, and is the recipient of The Joseph F. Engelberger Award in Technology, one of the most prestigious awards in robotics. Martin holds a PhD in Electrical Engineering from Yale University and completed his postdoctoral work in the Artificial Intelligence Lab at M.I.T. He resides in the Bay Area with his wife.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
The Future of Automation in Healthcare, Medicine & Pharmaceuticals | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Greg Buell

Greg Buell

Staff Engineer - General Industry and Automotive Segment
FANUC America Corporation

Greg Buell has over 20 years of experience in the automation industry. His specialties include automating machine tending applications, collaborative robotics operation and safety specifications, robot path teaching and vision, high speed picking/packing application, software and control logic architecture, troubleshooting, as well as training development and execution.

Since 2021, Greg has been responsible for supporting and bringing FANUC's Quick & Simple Startup of Robotization (QSSR) product to the US market. QSSR enables automation of machine tending by integrating FANUC robots and FANUC CNCs with a quick and single ethernet connection paired with simple software configuration. In order to stay viable in the US manufacturing market given the worker shortages being seen across the country, companies need to automate their machinery.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Bridging the Gap: The Link Between Automation and Machine Tools | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 11:00 AM


Brian Burke

Brian Burke

Product Manager III
Bishop-Wisecarver Corporation

Brian Burke, Product Manager at Bishop-Wisecarver, is passionate about product development and manufacturing with educational backgrounds in Computer Aided Drafting and Design and Manufacturing Technology. He has 20 years of experience in the automation industry and extensive knowledge from production floor operations to product marketing activities, including CNC machining, lean manufacturing, equipment acquisition and implementation, product literature and catalog development, and trade show expositions. 

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
Extend the Reach of Robots with Robot Transfer Units | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 11:15 AM


Jeff Burnstein

Jeff Burnstein

President
Association of Advancing Automation (A3)

Jeff Burnstein is President of the Association for Advancing Automation (A3), the world’s leading robotics & automation trade group,  representing over 1300 global companies involved in robotics, artificial intelligence, machine vision, motion control and related automation technologies. Burnstein joined the association in 1983 and has held a variety of senior positions, culminating in his promotion to President in 2007.  He is a frequent commentator in the media, often discusses automation issues with policy makers, and regularly speaks at global conferences on issues such as global automation trends, the impact of automation on jobs and the future of automation beyond the factory floor. Burnstein also serves on the Executive Board of the International Federation of Robotics (IFR). In 2023 he received the Engelberger Award for Leadership, considered the “Nobel Prize of Robotics.”

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Advocacy and the Future of Robotics and Automation: How A3 is Working with Industry and Government Leaders To Advance U.S. Leadership | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 3:45 PM


Shawn Busse

Shawn Busse

CEO/Founder
Kinesis

Shawn Busse is the founder and CEO of Kinesis, a Portland-based marketing firm and business consultancy focused on transformation.

Since starting Kinesis in 2000, Shawn has been on a mission to radically transform how businesses think about marketing, culture, and growth. While traditional marketing focuses on external tactics, he found that the most successful companies start at their epicenter and gravitate outward. Shawn uses this core business philosophy, Marketing from the Inside Out®, to help small business owners and leaders reinvent their companies. 

Kinesis has been one of Oregon’s fastest-growing private companies for five straight years — earning the prestigious Lighthouse Award in 2016. The company was also honored at the Portland Business Journal’s Small Business Innovation Awards, and named one of America’s Best Entrepreneurial Companies by Entrepreneur Magazine. Kinesis is also a proud certified B Corporation and has been acknowledged as a Best For The World Company two years in a row.

As Kinesis’ CEO, Shawn’s primary focus is on setting the strategic direction for the company, championing the business mission, values, and vision, and deliberately maintaining internal culture with every new hire and client acquisition. His book, Marketing from the Inside Out® captures nearly two decades of experience in starting, running, and growing small businesses.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
Value Shop: Building An Automation Practice Designed For This Century | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Utku Buyuksahin

Utku Buyuksahin

President & CTO
Sensobright Industries LLC

Prof. Dr. Utku Buyuksahin, who holds over 180 internationally granted patents, is the founder & CTO of Sensobright, a tactile sensing technology company which has engineered the world’s tiniest tactile sensors (over 300 receptors per 1 square centimeter). 

Prof. Dr. Buyuksahin’s innovations at Sensobright (over 140 international granted patents about tactile sensing technologies) provide robots with a sense of touch more powerful than human touch sensing abilities and can greatly enhance robotic manipulation/gripping, safety/surrounding sensing, and multidimensional touch data gathering. Applications include Automotive, MedTech, Robotics, Industrial Automation, and Consumer Electronics. 

As a decorated engineer he owns a B.S. M.Sc. and Ph.D. in mechanical engineering and B.S. in business administration. His expertise is in but is not limited to robotics, sensors, image processing, motion control, and neuromodulation. 

Prof. Dr. Buyuksahin's dedication to making a positive impact on society and his unwavering commitment to advancing technology have earned him respect both professionally and personally. In 2019, he was selected as one of the top 25 scientists across the globe by Falling Walls Foundation, which has the President of Nobel Foundation among its board members. Recently he was selected to the lists of “Most Influential Leaders to Follow in 2023”, “World’s Most Technophile Leaders to Watch in 2023”, “The 10 Smartest Personalities in the Robotics Industry, 2023” and has been honored as the cover face of many prestigious technology and business magazines. 

He also actively engages in music to stimulate his mind and fuel his imagination. He is both a music enthusiast and a skilled musician. He plays over 10 instruments and has been composing/playing/recording/arranging advertisement music for television channels for many years.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Emerging Tactile Sensing Technology Solving the Challenges in Robot & Cobot Safety | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 11:15 AM


Stephanie Cannon

Stephanie Cannon

SVP, Operations Excellence & Collaborative Innovation
Pitney Bowes

Stephanie Cannon oversees the Operations Excellence & Collaborative Innovation group for Global eCommerce. The design of the Operations Excellence & CI group is intended to foster efficient partnership with the GEC operations and Pitney Bowes cross functional teams to accelerate the modernization and expansion of our network and support operational excellence for long-term growth.

The group consists of four teams: Industrial Engineering & Continuous Improvement that include our Collaborative Innovation Group, Workforce Optimization group, Automation and System Innovation group, and Operational Excellence group.

Other roles prior to current role included leading the Operations Practices & Innovation Group, Automation & Systems Innovation Group, Director of Operations for Fulfillment Services, and lead the Industrial Engineering group for fulfillment services. Stephanie Cannon attended the University of Toledo and graduated with a Bachelor of Science, Industrial Engineering

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
How Ease-of-Use Automation is Empowering Industries | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 1:45 PM


Jeff Cardenas

Jeff Cardenas

Co-founder and CEO
Apptronik

Jeff Cardenas is co-founder and CEO of Apptronik and specializes in new product development and go-to-market strategy. Cardenas received his Master of Science in Technology Commercialization from the University of Texas at Austin. He previously worked in the Global Commercialization Group at the IC2 Institute at UT Austin, working with innovators from around the globe to take innovations out of the research lab and into the market. Cardenas holds an undergraduate Business degree from UT and worked in the technology practice of Deloitte Consulting. He previously founded several startups and a nonprofit. Cardenas has a passion for entrepreneurship and using technology to solve social issues and improve the world.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Humanoid Robots: The Next Wave of Versatile Automation | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 8:00 AM

Automate Show Theater
Humanoid Robotics: Is It Their Time? | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 12:00 PM


Brian Casey

Brian Casey

CEO and President
ECM PCB Stator Tech

Mr. Casey is an expert in the energy and technology industry with over 30 years of experience. This includes leading two companies from growth-stage, to scale, to acquisition.    

As the founder and CEO of sustainable energy firm, SourceOne,  Brian was responsible for the overall management and technical efforts of the company. He successfully raised equity investments, targeted and acquired a complementing business from a Fortune 500 company, and developed a uniquely qualified commercial, private utility offering. Under Mr. Casey’s direction, SourceOne created and implemented award winning, sustainable energy projects for its customers and secured multi-million-dollar energy efficiency and infrastructure contracts within the private and public sectors.  

Veolia Environnement S.A. acquired SourceOne in April of 2007. Mr. Casey continued to grow SourceOne over the next several years, realizing double-digit growth in revenue and earnings and delivering significant shareholder value.  

From there, Mr. Casey co-founded SourceGreen, an industrial scale solar energy development company that successfully created 8 MWs of renewable solar energy within the state of Massachusetts. NextSun Energy acquired SourceGreen in 2013. 
 
In his role as President and CEO of ECM PCB Stator Technology, Brian has driven ECM’s development as a global electric motor design and SaaS company. ECM pairs advanced Motor CAD and patented PCB Stator—printed circuit board—technology to create next generation electric motors that are lighter, quieter, and more energy and space efficient across a broad range of use cases.   

Mr. Casey has led the adoption of ECM’s technology by multiple partners across a broad range of verticals: HVAC, Consumer Electronics, E-Mobility, Fitness, Medical, Robotics, Renewable Energy, Aerospace, Defense, and more. 
 
Brian served on the board of Hubbell Power Systems acquired Cantega Technologies—an industry-leading software platform for the manufacture of dielectric polymer products that serve the electric utility industry.  

Mr. Casey holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Electrical Engineering with a concentration in Power Systems & Delivery from Northeastern University.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
Using PrintStator CAD To Optimize PCB Stator Electric Motors for Automation | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Clint Chapman

Clint Chapman

Sr. Mgr. Strategic Partner Relations Education / Work Force Development
Yaskawa America, Inc. Motoman Robotics Division

Clint Chapman has spent over 25 years in the robotics industry, both as a customer and supplier.  Before joining the Yaskawa Motoman team in 1998, he worked at Hitachi (San Francisco, CA), using robots to manufacture computer hard-drive components.  Chapman’s early work at Yaskawa supported customers such as Toyota and Honda, as well as many other supply chain networks, helping to improve OEE through the adoption of state-of-the-art automation. 

Recently, he has moved from the Sr. Sales Manager for key Japanese OEM and automotive accounts to focus on Education and Workforce Development.  Chapman is a regular speaker on the topic of automation at the University of Dayton, among other schools.  He’s also an avid RC pilot, married, and has three TEENAGERS

Session(s):

Educator Day
LUNCHEON PANEL DISCUSSION: Preparing our Workforce for Smart Manufacturing Careers | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 11:45 AM


Rebecca Charboneau

Rebecca Charboneau

Optical Engineer
Edmund Optics

Rebecca Charboneau joined Edmund Optics in 2021 and is part of the Engineering Leadership Program. Currently, she works with the Imaging Business Unit and is focused on developing a strategy for Edmund Optics’ microscopy portfolio. Rebecca holds an MS and BS in Biomedical Engineering from Rowan University.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Discovering the Key Factors in Microscope Objective Performance | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 10:15 AM


Romik Chatterjee

Romik Chatterjee

VP Business Development
Graftek Imaging

Romik Chatterjee has a Ph.D. from the University of Texas in Electrical Engineering. He has been involved in the development of new scientific imaging methods and technologies for over two decades. His research started with the visualization of density fluctuations that occur in magnetically confined fusion plasmas with an infrared laser based imaging system. He has experience developing imaging systems using microwaves, visible and infrared light, and x-rays. As the Vice President of Business Development at Graftek Imaging for the last 13 years, he has led a team of engineers in development of custom machine vision systems for Fortune 50 companies that have been deployed worldwide. Graftek has specialized in color measurements, metrology and automated inspection systems for semiconductor, electronic manufacturing and food industries.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Advanced Color Machine Vision & Applications | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 2:00 PM


Roger Christian

Roger Christian

Divisional Leader, New Business Development
Yaskawa America Inc., Motoman Robotics Div.

Roger Christian started his robotics career at Bendix Robotics in 1982 as a Mechanical Engineer and has spent the past 34 years working for Yaskawa America Inc., Motoman Robotics Div. https://www.motoman.com. His current role as Divisional Leader of New Business Development is to recommend focused strategic investment, product development and/or new market penetration to insure mid to long term growth by studying broad market needs and trends and then developing commercial strategies for the Company.

Roger currently serves on the Technology Advisory Committee for the Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing (ARM) Institute http://arminstitute.org/, is an active member of the ROS Industrial Consortium https://rosindustrial.org/ and leads his division’s participation in Yaskawa’s venture capital fund.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Strategies for Making Advanced Robotic Manufacturing Technology Accessible to System Integrators and End Users | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 2:30 PM


Gina Chung

Gina Chung

Vice President, Corporate Development
Locus Robotics

As Vice President of Corporate Development, Gina is responsible for shaping Locus’ end-to-end automation strategy and driving growth through strategic partnerships and initiatives. She leverages over a decade of global experience in the logistics sector, applying her unique blend of innovation, business, and operations skills to advance Locus’s vision. Prior to this role, Gina was Vice President of Innovation at DHL where she launched their most advanced Innovation Center located in Chicago. In this capacity, she worked closely with DHL’s top 100 customers and startups to evaluate and implement a broad range of automation technologies in post, parcel, forwarding, and 3PL operations. Her leadership also extended to DHL’s global research endeavors, where she directed the industry-acclaimed Logistics Trend Radar series. Hailing from New Zealand, Gina is a staunch advocate of using technology to improve the world around us.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
AI in the Warehouse: What You Really Need to Know | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 3:30 PM


Mike Cicco

Mike Cicco

President and CEO
FANUC America Corporation

Mike Cicco is the President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of FANUC America Corporation.  As President and CEO, Cicco has responsibility for all of the company’s operations in North and South America.  Cicco also serves as a senior managing officer of FANUC CORPORATION (Japan).   Cicco joined FANUC in 1999 and has held a variety of management positions over the years including software/controls manager and district sales manager at the company’s Southern California facility.  In 2005, Cicco transferred to FANUC’s headquarters in Rochester Hills, MI to take on the role of national account manager of the company’s Authorized System Integrator sales group.  As his career progressed, he was named general manager of several robot division groups including Material Handling Engineering, Authorized System Integrator sales, and Domestic Automotive/Michigan Regional sales.  In 2015, Cicco was promoted to vice president of FANUC’s North and South American sales and execution.  In April 2016, Cicco was named president and COO.    Before joining FANUC, Cicco served as lead automation engineer for Northrop Grumman in the Automation and Information Systems group.  Cicco holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Bucknell University in Lewisburg, PA.   In addition, he is a board member of the Association for Manufacturing Technology (AMT).

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
The Robotics Executive Roundtable: The Trends & Technologies Driving the Industry in 2024 | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Jacob Cipriano

Jacob Cipriano

Business Development
Manufacturing Automation Systems LLC

With 19 years experience in robotic automation for manufactures ranging from the complexities of the aerospace industry, to the harsh environments of foundry, Jake has experienced many of industries needs to "level-up" American manufacturing with intelligent automation.

As business development and product manager for Manufacturing Automation Systems, Jake is focused on advancing manufacturing through intelligent manufacturing software QCPlus Core. Jake believes that the key to enabling higher-level automation is with advanced 3D vision systems and software capable of closing feedback loop of measurements and defect inspection with adaptive robotic path planning.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Strategies for Making Advanced Robotic Manufacturing Technology Accessible to System Integrators and End Users | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 2:30 PM


Michael Clark

Michael Clark

Director OPC Foundation North America
OPC Foundation

As the Director of OPC Foundation North America, Michael Clark continues his career-long advocacy on behalf of the automation industry as it transforms itself through IT/OT convergence into the digital era.

With over 30 years of experience in the discipline of industrial automation and controls, Mr. Clark is internationally recognized throughout the process automation sector for his expertise in Industrial Control System (ICS) fieldbus protocols. Mr. Clark is also recognized for his contributions as one of the authors of the Open Process Automation Standard (O-PAS™). As a vendor-neutral advocate for the end-user community, Mr. Clark became the Founding Director of BusCorp Inc., a Canadian-based consulting firm dedicated to design, implementation, commissioning, and training in the competencies of ICS networks and fieldbus systems. He has supported industrial sectors across the globe including, refining & upgrading, chemicals, food & beverage, gas exploration, offshore production, water & waste water treatment, power generation, and nuclear remediation. 

You can reach Mike at: [email protected]

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
OPC UA - Secure Interoperability from Sensor to Cloud | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 11:15 AM


Josh Cloer

Josh Cloer

Director of Sales
Mujin

Speaker biography coming soon. 

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Simplifying Robotics: True No-Code Programming | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 11:15 AM


Robb Colbrunn

Robb Colbrunn

Director, BioRobotics Lab, Cleveland Clinic
Cleveland Clinic

Robb received a B.S.M.E. in 1996 from Grove City College, a M.S.M.E. in 2000 from Case Western Reserve University, and a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering in 2013 from Cleveland State University. Along the way he worked in both academia and industry developing test systems for the automotive industry, creating control systems for unique robotic actuators, performing system integration of International Space Station experiments for NASA, and designing & manufacturing novel medical devices. He was recruited by the Cleveland Clinic in 2005 to launch the BioRobotics Core. His area of research interest lies where medicine and robotics intersect; both currently and in the future. Much of the research he has done is in the realm of orthopaedic biomechanics using robotic testing methodologies, but is not limited to a single joint or anatomical region. This technology is now being applied in manufacturing settings as well. This broad perspective has given him a unique view and cross-disciplinary knowledge in the field. Robotics are becoming more and more common in today’s world and the potential applications are limitless. He is motivated by having the ability to harness those technologies and apply them in ways to ultimately help patients and workers.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Robotic Force Control: Applications from Medicine to Manufacturing | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 10:15 AM


Alex Coleman

Alex Coleman

Market Research Analyst
A3

Alex Coleman is A3’s Market Research Analyst. With a background in finance and data analytics, he is focused on providing A3’s members with useful, quantitative research.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
The Automation Market: The Statistics & Trends You Should Be Watching | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 1:15 PM


James Cooper

James Cooper

General Manager - General Industry Sales and Execution
FANUC America Corporation

James Cooper is the General Manager of FANUC America’s General Industry Sales and Execution. He is responsible for the company’s general industry regional office sales and execution teams, Certified Education Training (CERT), Authorized System Integrator (ASI) group and the Executive Sales Team.

Cooper joined FANUC Robotics in 1985, and has over 40 years’ experience in the automation, robotics & packaging industries serving the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico markets.

Cooper has a Bachelor of Science in business administration and a major in marketing from Lawrence University. He has served on the A3 Automate Show and Events committee for 14 years.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Logistics & Warehousing: What’s Next for the Industry & Automation | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 2:30 PM


Del Costy
KEYNOTE SPEAKER

Del Costy

President and Managing Director
Siemens Digital Industries

Del Costy serves as Managing Director, Americas for Siemens Digital Industries Software and President of Digital Industries (software and automation) in the U.S. In this role, Del is responsible for leading all of Digital Industries U.S. Go-To-Market in addition to serving as the head of the Americas Zone Sales & Customer Success for Digital Industries Software.

Del’s unique experience brings together the power of Siemens automation and software businesses, delivering solutions for agility, efficiency and new business value to companies across the U.S. and the Americas. This includes championing Siemens Xcelerator portfolio and its integrated software and application tools tailored to meet customers’ specific needs as they pursue digital transformation.

Before his current role, Del was the U.S. Country Manager, responsible for operations in Siemens Digital Industries Software’s largest revenue country. He has also held leadership positions in several vertical businesses focused on automotive, transportation & heavy equipment solutions.    

Prior to joining Siemens, Del spent a decade in the automotive supplier community supporting vehicle programs in both product development and manufacturing. In addition to his management experience, he has served as a Technical Sales Engineer for Abex Friction Products, now a division of Federal Mogul, and provided manufacturing consulting focused on the application of software tools to drive manufacturing plant optimization.  

Del holds a Master of Business Administration from Wayne State University and received his Bachelor of Science in applied engineering sciences from Michigan State University. He also serves on the board for SAE ITC.

Del and his wife, Suha, reside in Northville, Michigan, with their son Dominic.  

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Session(s):

Automate Conference
Expect More From Your Automation: Transforming U.S. Manufacturing | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 9:00 AM


Brian Coyne

Brian Coyne

VP of Engineering
Harmonic Drive LLC

Brian Coyne is the VP of Engineering at Harmonic Drive LLC. Thanks to his knowledge and expertise in mechatronics, Harmonic Drive LLC developed and launched a line of actuators with integrated servo drives. He attended Tufts University where he developed his appreciation and understanding for custom machine design and processes.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Development of A Low Profile, Power Dense Actuator to Meet the Demands of Current Robot Designs | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 11:15 AM


Adam Crandall

Adam Crandall

Chief Revenue Officer
Addtronics

Adam Crandall has a successful track record building high-performing teams and leading new commercial initiatives. In his role at Addtronics, he will continue to build and lead sales, marketing, and applications teams, while also driving revenue growth. Previously, Mr. Crandall served in various senior leadership positions at VWR International (now Avantor), Refraction Technologies Corporation, Micro Instrument Corporation, and Dynamic Design Solutions. He has also led all areas of new business development, including monitoring market trends, acquiring new customers, and implementing robust sales and marketing strategies. As a former member of the World Leaders Group and current member of Vistage Worldwide, Mr. Crandall is dedicated to refining his craft in order to further empower his team and find new ways to give back to others around him. With 6 years in the automation space and more within manufacturing, Mr. Crandall has a vast knowledge and extreme passion for innovation in the manufacturing industry.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
An Introduction to Automation: Working with Systems Integrators | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 3:30 PM


Ken Crawford

Ken Crawford

Senior Director of Automation Sales Network
Weidmuller

With 25+ years of experience working in the automation industry, Kenneth Crawford has quickly become a leader in the field of Industrial Automation Intelligence. Ken graduated with a BSEE from Old Dominion University and an MBA from The University of Richmond. Ken led many IoT and Automation teams at General Electric before becoming the Dir. of Automation at Weidmuller USA, where he currently leads the Automation business. He is charged with growing the automation business through IIoT offerings and services, as well as assessing and meeting customer needs across a variety of industries for solutions leading to smarter manufacturing aal the way to AI-enabled solutions. An experienced and accomplished Engineer, Ken has over 150 design wins, 7+ patents, and multiple awards.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
How to Simplify Your Industrial IoT Through an Open Ecosystem | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Justin Crump

Justin Crump

Application Engineer, Large Accounts
Universal Robots

Justin Crump is a 14-year veteran of turnkey automation, having worked for a robot manufacturer, system integrator and vacuum end-effector producers. For the past 5 years with Universal Robots, Justin held various roles including application engineer and currently a Senior Application Engineer, Large Accounts. In his roles, he supports distributors, integrators and end-users find success with cobot deployments. He is based in North Carolina and supports the East Region.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Cobots in Machine Tending: How You Can Succeed with Deployment | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 2:15 PM


Drew Cunningham

Drew Cunningham

Business Development Manager
AutoStore

Drew Cunningham has advised clients at every organizational level across the full gamut of industries. He brings a decade of experience specifying and deploying technology into manufacturing facilities and warehouses. After graduating with a Mechanical Engineering degree from the University of Texas, he began his career designing pipelines and O&G facilities before finding his calling in industrial automation.

He currently leads AutoStore’s Industrial Division in North America, its largest vertical worldwide. AutoStore systems are installed at over 1,200 sites globally. Drew’s primary aim is to be a resource for leaders who want to explore automation to maximize space and labor utilization.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Unlock Your Facility’s Potential with Robotic Storage | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Beatrice Danese

Beatrice Danese

Product Manager
Opto Engineering

Beatrice Danese is a product manager at Opto Engineering® Headquarters.

She graduated in linguistic mediation with a major in marketing, public relations and advertising in 2019 and in international communication for enterprises and organizations in 2021, while already interning at Opto Engineering.

Since 2022, she has started giving speeches at international events in the field of machine vision.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Special Lenses for Top and Side Inspection with Just One Camera: Advantages vs. Multi-camera Systems and Latest Innovations | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 4:15 PM


Eric Danziger

Eric Danziger

CEO & Co-Founder
Invisible AI

Eric Danziger is the CEO and Co-Founder of Invisible AI. After serving in the US Army for nearly a decade, Eric studied computer vision at the Robotics Institute of Carnegie Mellon University. He then moved to Silicon Valley and worked at several startups before joining the self-driving race at Luminar Technologies. As the Director of Software Engineering, he led a team of over 30 engineers working on some of the hardest problems in autonomous driving. In 2018, he founded Invisible AI to bring state-of-the-art technology from self-driving to industrial applications, blending his military experience and technical knowledge to help companies streamline operations.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Demystifying AI: Tangible Solutions for Today's Manufacturing Challenges | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Georgy Das

Georgy Das

Director of Systems & Training
Midwest Optical Systems

Georgy Das is the Technical Training Manager at Midwest Optical Systems. He has delivered countless presentations and training sessions all over the globe. He loves to figure out simple solutions to complex problems and is always tracking the latest trends in both machine vision and the technology landscape as a whole.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Protect and Enhance Your Imaging System with Optical Filters | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 3:30 PM


James Davidson

James Davidson

Chief Architect
MiR

Dr. James Davidson is the Chief Architect at Mobile Industrial Robots (MiR), where he oversees the development of the company's next-generation products. With a focus on the intersection of robotics and artificial intelligence, his career has spanned over 20 years. Dr. Davidson's expertise in this field began with his doctoral work at the University of Illinois, where he specialized in reinforcement learning applied to robotics. He went on to co-found two successful startups, serving as CEO of Talos Robotics and CTO of Third Wave, as well as holding research leadership positions at Google Brain Robotics and the MITRE Corporation. Throughout his career, Dr. Davidson has contributed to a broad range of AI topics and research publications. He has experience working with terrestrial and space robots, having worked on satellites at Sandia National Laboratories early in his career. However, he has yet to work with underwater robots, which he plans to remedy by building a submersible robot with his two kids.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Cutting Through the Hype: An Overview on How to Evaluate AI Solutions for Industrial Applications | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Tim Dawson

Tim Dawson

Senior Research Director
Interact Analysis

Tim is the Senior Research Director and Principal Analyst for Interact Analysis' Industrial Automation team. He uses his 20+ year experience to develop best-in-class research for the manufacturing sector and is a frequent speaker on all things research at conferences and industry trade shows across the world.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
The Automation Market: The Statistics & Trends You Should Be Watching | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 1:15 PM


Evaldo de Oliveira

Evaldo de Oliveira

VP of Business Development
FairCom

Evaldo has more than 20 years of IT experience in both the sales and technology. He's worked with enterprise software, hardware infrastructure, cloud and edge data management, databases, and digital transformation.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Edge Computing and Manufacturing: Use Cases and Practical Examples of Industrial IoT | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 11:00 AM


David Dechow

David Dechow

Industrial Factory Solutions Architect
Motion AI

David L. Dechow is an engineer, programmer, and technologist specializing in the integration of machine vision, robotics, and other automation technologies. Mr. Dechow is Industrial Factory Solutions Architect for MOTION AI located at their North Carolina office and has had a long career in the automation industry.

Mr. Dechow is a recipient of the A3 Automated Imaging Achievement Award, is a member of the Association for Advancing Automation (A3) Imaging Technology Strategy Board and is contributing editor for Vision Systems Design magazine.

As a key educator within the machine vision industry, Mr. Dechow has participated in the training of hundreds of engineers as an instructor with the A3 Certified Vision Professional program. He also is well known for his frequent informative technical articles, papers, webinars, and conference sessions and classes covering a wide range of technical topics involving machine vision and enabling technologies in industrial automation.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
The Fundamentals of Machine Vision | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 8:00 AM
Automation Solutions and Machine Vision – Keys to Reducing Risk and Ensuring Success | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 10:15 AM
Vision System Design | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:30 AM
Advanced Vision System Integration | Friday, May 10, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Dale Deering

Dale Deering

Senior Director, Business Development
Teledyne

Dale Deering is the Senior Director for Business Development at Teledyne Imaging, responsible for oversight of product and business development for all machine vision camera products. Dale has worked in the field of machine vision for over 25 years in both development and business leadership roles, and has extensive experience with line-scan use for many high speed and novel imaging applications. His in-depth knowledge of application requirements and key performance factors combined with technical innovation have produced a succession of imaging products with industry leading performance and strong global demand.

In this course you learn about Line-scan imaging, and how using a scanning technique can be beneficial for efficient image capture of moving objects. While line-scan imaging enables some of the simplest applications, it also facilitates the highest resolution, highest performance applications on the planet (or off planet) due to its ability to rapidly capture image data and stream it for sequential processing. Topics cover components for line-scan image acquisition, when to use line-scan, factors that impact image capture, how to achieve optimum results, and trends in the industry. When you complete this course, you will be able to recognize candidate applications for line-scan imaging and understand how to develop and implement line-scan solutions.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Designing Linescan Vision Systems | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Dave DeGraaf

Dave DeGraaf

CEO
JR Automation

As Chief Executive Officer of JR Automation, DeGraaf is responsible for corporate growth and company operations worldwide. With an extensive career in manufacturing, mobility, and energy storage, DeGraaf has held leadership positions at Johnson Controls, Volta Power Systems, Faurecia, and Gill Industries in addition to a distinguished career in the United States Air Force. Prior to his current role at JR Automation, DeGraaf served as CEO of Volta Power Systems, a leading player in advanced lithium-ion power systems for RV, marine and work-truck OEMs. Throughout his career, DeGraaf has built business success by focusing on customer service, teamwork, and people development.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
The State of the Automation Industry - Leadership Roundtable | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 12:30 PM


Michael DeGrace

Michael DeGrace

UR+ Ecosystem Manager
Universal Robots

Michael DeGrace graduated from the Colorado School of Mines with a Bachelor of Science in Chemical and Biological Engineering and is an experienced sales engineer with proficiency in manufacturing, components, and collaborative robots. Michael started at Universal Robots as a Channel Development Manager in 2018 and is now a Universal Robots Plus Ecosystem Manager.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Emerging Trends in Collaborative Automation | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Paul DeWys

Paul DeWys

Sales Engineer
Forerunner 3D Printing

I am a sales guy trapped in the body of an engineer who ended up in marketing, hence, my role as a Sales Engineer! I love to work with companies and customers to help educate them about what is possible when you combine 3D laser scanning to capture a part, mechanical engineering expertise to modify it as needed, and a wide variety of additive manufacturing equipment to help either prototype it or in some cases produce end use parts.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Design For Additive Manufacturing: By A Machine Designer For Machine Builders | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 10:15 AM


Ross Diankov

Ross Diankov

CEO & Co-Founder
Mujin Corp

Ross Diankov, co-founder of Mujin, is a distinguished innovator in robotics and artificial intelligence, celebrated for his pivotal role in advancing robot software development. With a foundation in computer science, Diankov furthered his expertise in robotics with a Ph.D. from Carnegie Mellon University's Robotics Institute. His groundbreaking research there laid the groundwork for robots performing complex manipulations in dynamic environments.

In 2011, Diankov leveraged his expertise to co-found Mujin, aiming to redefine industrial automation with intelligent robotics solutions. Mujin has since been at the vanguard of integrating robotics into logistics and manufacturing, streamlining operations with unparalleled efficiency. The MujinController Platform, a testament to Diankov's vision, exemplifies the company's innovation, enabling robots with the ability to autonomously navigate and manipulate their surroundings.

A proponent of open-source technology, Diankov has significantly contributed to the Robot Operating System (ROS) and various other open-source projects, facilitating widespread advancements in robotics research and application.

Diankov's contributions extend beyond technology development. As a thought leader, he actively participates in conferences and panels, sharing insights into the fusion of academic research and industrial application in robotics. His forward-thinking approach and dedication to innovation not only fuel Mujin's success but also inspire the next wave of robotics enthusiasts and professionals.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Logistics & Warehousing: What’s Next for the Industry & Automation | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 2:30 PM


Jan Diekmann

Jan Diekmann

Technical Account Manager
Ericsson

Jan Diekmann is helping bring the advantage of cellular technologies (4G/5G) to life in production and process industries—enabling them to cut the wires enhance existing means of production and logistics. He is currently a Technical Account Manager focusing on partnering with the manufacturing technology ecosystem to develop the next generation of digital manufacturing. He has been with Ericsson for over 20 years and holds an Electrical Engineering degree from the University of Dortmund in Germany.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Private Cellular Networks: Lessons from Early Adopters in Manufacturing | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 11:30 AM


Jacob Dison

Jacob Dison

Technical Specialist II
Mayo Clinic

Jacob Dison is the technical lead for autonomous mobile robots and related technologies at Mayo Clinic, where he leverages his diverse background in IT and OT to oversee the technical design and implementation of robotic solutions that enhance patient care and operational efficiency. Jacob also plays a key role in the establishment of enterprise governance, architecture, and review processes for robotic solutions.

Jacob joined Mayo Clinic in 2011 and has held a variety of roles related to product support, software development, systems architecture, and currently serves as an architecture board chair. Throughout his career Jacob has gained broad insight into healthcare technology, enterprise governance, information security, and regulatory compliance.

Before joining Mayo Clinic, Jacob spent 12 years as a plant maintenance manager, where he managed and maintained a wide range of operational technologies and infrastructure. He gained valuable experience in automation, optimization, and reliability engineering, which he applies to his current role. Jacob holds a Master’s of Computer Science from the University of Minnesota.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Autonomous Mobile Robots in Healthcare | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 2:30 PM


Jeremy Dodson

Jeremy Dodson

CISO
NextLink Labs

Jeremy began his 20+ year career in Information Technology and Cybersecurity as a Signals Intelligence Analyst for the United States Air Force. While in the armed forces, Mr. Dodson served in NSA’s Center for Executive Protection, where he performed nation-state threat analysis and conducted security briefings at the White House with the President of the United States and top government and military officials.

After leaving military service, Jeremy led the technical team for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Independent Enterprise Assessments (EA-21) performing full-scope assessments of critical national infrastructure, including 92 DOE sites, nuclear weapons complexes, Power Marketing Administrations, and Headquarters.

Now Mr. Dodson serves as the CISO for the Digital Transformation company NextLink Labs, where he assists other organizations in developing, maturing, and testing their own cybersecurity programs.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Automation's Cybersecurity Minefield: The Trends and Tools in Navigating the Invisible Threats | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Leah Dodson

Leah Dodson

Senior Cybersecurity Specialist
NextLink Labs

Leah Dodson is a cybersecurity researcher and advocate with 10 years of experience analyzing cybersecurity programs and authoring technical documentation. She specializes in helping organizations aggregate and compile data from their environments and develop customized cybersecurity program plans. Leah dedicates time to continually educating herself and her clients on the latest cybersecurity innovations, tools, techniques, frameworks, and standards.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Automation's Cybersecurity Minefield: The Trends and Tools in Navigating the Invisible Threats | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Taylor Dodson

Taylor Dodson

Information Security Manager
Interactive Training Systems, Inc.

Taylor Dodson, an information security manager at Interactive Training Systems Inc., combines her computer science background from UTSA with leadership skills developed as a Coach. Passionate about cybersecurity from childhood, to attending NSITE High School, she now spearheads emerging security trends. At Interactive Training Systems, Taylor plays a key role in advancing cybersecurity practices to protect their digital assets. Her collaborative approach and commitment to continual learning highlight her as an emerging talent in the field.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Automation's Cybersecurity Minefield: The Trends and Tools in Navigating the Invisible Threats | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Hope Dollarhide

Hope Dollarhide

Project Engineer
FANUC America

Hope Dollarhide is a Project Engineer with FANUC America Corporation positioned in the Automotive Component and General Industrial Paint Group. Her background includes a B.S. in Robotics Engineering from Lawrence Technological University and 4 years of experience in the Finishing and Coating industry. Those 4 years have included marketing/sales technical support as well as robot integrator liaison. She has field experience installing large scale robotic systems into Paint Shops from large class 8 trucks plants to single robots in small job shops.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Learn How the Latest Cobot Technologies can Optimize Any Production Process | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 2:30 PM


Tad Douce

Tad Douce

Co-Chairperson A3 Education Committee; Executive Director
EduEverything, Inc.

Tad Douce has served as a classroom teacher, instructional coach, and school administrator since beginning his career in 1996. He started his career as a middle school pre-engineering instructor in central Ohio and has authored numerous books, tutorials, and curriculum packages in robotics, STEM, manufacturing, and making. In 2011, he was awarded the Professor George Schneider, Jr. Manufacturing Technology Education Faculty Award from the Society of Manufacturing Engineers -Education Foundation and the prestigious SME-EF “Building the Future” award in 2008.

Tad is currently the Director of Educational Technology and Communication (a.k.a. Head Nerd) for River Valley Local Schools near Marion, Ohio. He also serves as the Executive Director for the 501c3 organization EduEverything, Inc., where he oversees operations for the National Robotics Challenge, Drones in School, and Advanced Vertical Robotics (AVR) STEM programs. Tad is also an adjunct faculty member at Ashland University instructing various STEM related graduate level courses. His great purpose is to help people find their passions and unleash their full potential.

Session(s):

Educator Day
PANEL DISCUSSION: Smart Manufacturing Workforce Development Best Practices | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Boris Duché

Boris Duché

Product Manager
IDS Imaging Development Systems GmbH

Boris Duché holds a position of Product Manager at IDS Imaging Development Systems GmbH. He is an experimented sales oriented engineer with deep knowledge in camera technologies including 3D sensors.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Which 3D Imaging Technique Is Right for You? | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Heiko Eisele

Heiko Eisele

President
MVTec USA

Heiko Eisele is the President of MVTec's subsidiary in the USA and responsible for sales, technical support, managing the North American network of distributors and integration partners as well as general business development.  Heiko joined MVTec in 2003 as an Application Engineer. He provided technical support to MVTec's worldwide distribution network, conducted product trainings for customers and distributors and implemented solutions for customers based on MVTec's HALCON software.  Bevor joining MVTec Heiko was a PhD student at Robert Bosch GmbH. There he developed software algorithms and applications for the automated analysis of X-Ray CT images. Heiko received his PhD from the University of Heidelberg in 2002.  Heiko has more than 20 years of experience in the machine vision industry.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Image Processing Fundamentals | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Jerry Entrikin

Jerry Entrikin

Sr. Applications Engineer
Andrews Cooper

Jerry Entrikin's professional journey includes impactful roles at JR Automation, Doerfer Companies, ATS Automation, and Rosen Aviation, where he honed his applications engineering and software engineering management skills.

Known for his exceptional problem-solving abilities and versatile skill set in engineering, Jerry is highly regarded for his inquisitive approach, innovative solutions, and productivity. Jerry's ability to tackle challenging engineering problems and his contributions to product development have made him a valuable asset in every role he has undertaken.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
Advanced Vision & Dispense Systems Integration | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 12:45 PM


Martin H. Ettenberg

Martin H. Ettenberg

CEO/President
Princeton Infrared Technologies, Inc.

Dr. Ettenberg is currently the CEO, board member, and founder of Princeton Infrared Technologies, Inc., a company dedicated to commercialization of NIR/SWIR detection technologies. They have been in business for 10 years and have several award-winning products. He had been developing InGaAs detectors for over 25 years starting at Sensors Unlimited Inc./Goodrich Corporation. He led the development of the first night-vision-capable InGaAs camera, which was later commercialized as the SU320MX. In addition to fabricating larger focal plane arrays and more sensitive cameras he was instrumental in developing smaller cameras for robotics and unmanned aerial vehicles. His DARPA worked lead to his nomination in 2005 for the DARPA Significant Achievement Award. Dr. Martin H. Ettenberg graduated with a Masters and a Ph.D. degree from the University of Virginia Dept. of Materials Science and Engineering. He also received his BS in Materials Science and Engineering from Cornell University.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
The Importance of Signal to Noise in SWIR Imaging: Why Is My SWIR Image Black? | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 1:30 PM
Non-Visible Imaging: Infrared Technology and Applications | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Paul Evans

Paul Evans

Executive Director R&D
Southwest Research Institute

Paul Evans is the Executive Director of R&D for the Technology, Operations, Programs and Strategy (TOPS) Team within the Intelligent Systems business area at Southwest Research Institute® (SwRI®). In his current role, Mr. Evans connects customers with expertise. His focus is on crosscutting applied research-based solutions for government and industry and providing customer connections to SwRI capabilities and resources. Focus areas include robotics, artificial intelligence, intelligent transportation systems, and high reliability systems. He supported the formation of the ROS-Industrial open-source program, an extension of the Robot Operating System (ROS), that focused on enabling advanced applications for industrial robotics. Paul is a registered Professional Engineer in the State of Texas, serves on the Executive Council for the Texas Manufacturing Assistance Center, and is a member of the Stakeholder Executive Committee for the Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing Institute.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Strategies for Making Advanced Robotic Manufacturing Technology Accessible to System Integrators and End Users | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 2:30 PM


Stephen Ezell

Stephen Ezell

Vice President, Global Innovation Policy
Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF)

Stephen Ezell is Vice President, Global Innovation Policy at the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF) and Director of ITIF’s Center for Life Sciences Innovation. He also leads the Global Trade and Innovation Policy Alliance. His areas of expertise include science and technology policy, international competitiveness, trade, and manufacturing. Ezell is the coauthor of Innovating in a Service-Driven Economy: Insights, Application, and Practice (Palgrave Macmillan, 2015) and Innovation Economics: The Race for Global Advantage (Yale, 2012).

Ezell came to ITIF from Peer Insight, an innovation research and consulting firm he cofounded in 2003 to study the practice of innovation in service industries. Ezell previously worked in the New Service Development group at the NASDAQ Stock Market, where he spearheaded the creation of the NASDAQ Market Intelligence Desk and the NASDAQ Corporate Services Network, services for NASDAQ-listed corporations. Ezell holds a B.S. from the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University, with an honors certificate from Georgetown’s Landegger International Business Diplomacy program.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Advocacy and the Future of Robotics and Automation: How A3 is Working with Industry and Government Leaders To Advance U.S. Leadership | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 3:45 PM


Diane Farrell

Diane Farrell

Deputy Under Secretary for International Trade
International Trade Administration

Diane Farrell is the Deputy Under Secretary for International Trade. In these roles, she plans, determines, and coordinates policy; directs the International Trade Administration; and oversees the daily operations of the International Trade Administration (ITA), which has an annual budget of $613 million with approximately 2,100 trade and investment professionals—based in more than 100 U.S. cities and 70 markets around the world. Within the Department of Commerce, Diane Farrell also serves currently as Co-Chair of the Equity Council, alongside Deputy Secretary of Commerce Don Graves.

Prior to becoming the Deputy Under Secretary for International Trade, she served as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Asia, where she was the principal advisor to the Assistant Secretary for Global Markets on all matters concerning international economics, trade, investment, and commercial policy programs and agreements with respect to Asia. In this role, she also oversaw planning and execution of Department of Commerce commercial diplomacy and export promotion strategies at United States Missions in Region Asia.

Previously, Farrell worked at the U.S. India Business Council (USIBC). As Executive Vice President, she oversaw business advocacy policy and government relations.

Farrell served on the Board of Directors at the Export Import Bank of the United States (U.S. EXIM Bank) before joining USIBC. A Presidential appointee, confirmed by the U.S. Senate, she was responsible for voting on transactions in excess of $10 million as well as significant policy matters. Her portfolio responsibilities included small business, India, Southeast Asia, and portions of Latin America. In addition, she was named a member of the White House Business Council. During her tenure at U.S. EXIM Bank, Indian transactions expanded and diversified as aircraft sales and conventional and green energy projects, among others, led to India becoming the second largest country by U.S. dollar allocation in the bank’s overall portfolio.

Before serving at U.S. EXIM Bank, Farrell was elected as the First Selectwoman (mayor), in Westport, Connecticut. In this role she managed multimillion-dollar budgets within the Consumer Price Index and maintained the town’s AAA bond rating at a time when significant infrastructure investment was taking place. She oversaw the construction of schools, a municipal wastewater treatment plant, affordable housing, and other necessary facilities.

Farrell also served as Chairwoman of the Southwestern Connecticut Regional Planning Agency Metropolitan Planning Organization that was responsible for federally funded transportation infrastructure in a vital commercial corridor. As a select member of the National League of Cities Transportation and Infrastructure Steering and Policy Committee, she helped set policy goals for transportation and infrastructure initiatives in support of cities and towns across the United States.

She is the recipient of the 2022 Presidential Rank Award as a Meritorious Executive for her sustained accomplishments in federal career senior executive service.

Farrell holds a Bachelor of Arts in American government from Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Global Business Opportunities for Automation Panel, followed by the International Trade Reception | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 4:00 PM


Neil Farrow

Neil Farrow

Machine Vision Applications Engineer
Datasensing

Neil Farrow has over 8 years of machine vision experience. Previously he was involved in the design, startup and improvement of control systems for many years. Roles include consulting, systems integration, and process improvement. He is a Certified Vision Professional and licensed professional engineer. The most important and fun aspect of his current role as Applications Engineer at Datasensing, a division of Datalogic, is training of Machine Vision fundamentals.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Beginning Lighting for Machine Vision | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Uriel Fraire

Uriel Fraire

Regional Manager Mexico and Central America
Universal Robots

Uriel Fraire is a Mechatronics Engineer with a specialization in bio-devices from the Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León, Mexico. He has over 12 years of experience in Industrial Automation and Collaborative Robotics. His career began as a Technical and Commercial Support Engineer, later transitioning to roles such as Industrial Consultant. He then assumed the position of Key Account Manager in the automotive industry at FESTO Automation. Uriel continued his professional development as a Business Development Manager, Channel Manager, and currently holds the position of Mexico and Central America Manager at Universal Robots.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Global Business Opportunities for Automation Panel, followed by the International Trade Reception | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 4:00 PM


Carole Franklin

Carole Franklin

Director of Standards Development, Robotics
Association for Advancing Automation

Carole Franklin is the Director of Standards Development, Robotics, for the Association for Advancing Automation (A3). She leads A3’s standards development activities in developing the ANSI and ISO Robot Safety Standards. Before joining RIA, Carole spent over four years with management consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton, where she led projects on business process improvement, internal communications, and executive communications. Prior to Booz Allen, Carole worked for Ford Motor Company for ten years in the market research department, where she led consumer research projects and tracking studies. Carole holds BA and MBA degrees from the University of Michigan.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Robotics Standards Update | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 11:15 AM


Kyle Franklin

Kyle Franklin

Senior Solutions Consultant
Lucas Systems

Kyle Franklin is a Senior Solution Consultant with Lucas Systems, leading numerous solution designs and implementations in the U.S., EMEA and Asia Pacific Regions and helping to transform and optimize distribution center operations worldwide. Prior to Lucas, Kyle held roles in international logistics and warehousing for global logistics providers. Kyle has an MBA with a focus in Operations and Strategy from the Katz Graduate School of Business at the University of Pittsburgh and a B.S. in Economics from the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
A Software Approach to Reducing Picking Hours By 50% | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 12:00 PM


Philip Freidin

Philip Freidin

Applications Engineer
IDS Imaging Development Systems

Philip Freidin is an Applications Engineer at IDS Imaging Development Systems Inc. He currently supports customers that are developing machine vision solutions with IDS 2D, Ensenso 3D, and NXT embedded cameras. Throughout his 5 years at the company, Philip has helped integrate IDS cameras into applications such as bin picking, palletizing/depalletizing, logistics automation, quality assurance, and sports engineering. He holds a B.S. in aerospace engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
The Fundamentals of Camera & Image Sensor Technology | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 2:00 PM


Michelle Frumkin

Michelle Frumkin

Senior Global Robotics Portfolio Manager
3M Company

Michelle Frumkin is a Senior Global Robotics Portfolio Manager for 3M’s Abrasive Systems Division. She is responsible for Marketing, New Business Models, Partnerships, and utilizing her consumer marketing background to share and help simplify the message that Robotic Abrasive Processing is Possible!

Michelle’s background includes 12 years at 3M split between industrial & consumer businesses including internal corporate strategy, new product innovation, marketing for Post-it® Notes, and her current role focused on Robotics & Automation for 3M Abrasive solutions. Prior to 3M, Michelle had her own photography business and worked in marketing and PR. She has an MBA from Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business and a BS in Marketing from University of Arizona’s Eller School of Management.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
No One Does It Alone: What It Takes to Make a Partnership Work in Robotic Abrasive Processing | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 3:30 PM


Jeff Fryman

Jeff Fryman

Principal Consultant
Association for Advancing Automation

Jeff Fryman is a retired United States Air Force officer. His 21-year career included eleven years’ experience as a Program Manager overseeing technical training programs.

For a second career, Jeff joined the Robotic Industries Association as their Director of Standards Development until his retirement in 2013. His 17-years at the RIA saw him responsible for the development of both the 1999 and 2012 editions of the ANSI/RIA R15.06 American National Standard for Industrial Robot Safety. He was also responsible for organizing the annual National Robot Safety Conference and numerous smaller safety events. In his roll at RIA, Jeff developed curricula for robot safety training, and taught hundreds of classes featuring the R15.06 methodology for conducting Risk Assessment. He also assisted in consulting on Risk Assessment and Robot Safety, and continues in his training roll with the association.

Internationally, Jeff was the Convener for ISO TC184/SC2 WG3, the committee responsible for developing the ISO 10218-1 and -2 International Standards for Industrial Robot Safety. Domestically, Jeff was the Vice-chair for the ANSI/ASSE Z244.1 committee; the standard for Control of Hazardous Energy – Lockout/Tagout and Alternative Methods. He has also been involved in other standards development efforts including the Canadian Standards Association committees for Robot Safety and Hazardous Energy Control; the Underwriters’ Laboratories Standards Technical Panel for UL1740 (robot safety); AMT and B11 Inc. ANSI Accredited Standards Committee for Safety of Machines – B11; and an advisor to the American Welding Society’s D16 committee for robotic welding.

Outside interests include all aspects of railroad operations. His model railroading activities include standards development and participation in regional and national events. And finally, Jeff never denies “going around in circles”; particularly when he is doing volunteer work for a railway museum where he is a qualified antique trolley operator.

Jeff resides in Saline, Michigan; outside of Ann Arbor.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Introduction to Robot Risk Assessment | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Daniel Fudge

Daniel Fudge

Sr Director Software & Data Solutions
Very

With a Master’s of Aerospace Engineering and Master of Business Administration, Daniel Fudge has over 20 years of experience bringing advanced analytics to reality in a wide array of applications, including space robotics, military flight simulators, and business jet engines. This synthesis of hardware, cloud computing, and Machine Learning (ML) is now focused on deploying intelligence to IoT systems.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
From Sensors to ChatGPT; How to Unlock Connectivity and Automation | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 3:45 PM


David Galati

David Galati

Chief Scientist
TITAN Robotics Inc

Dr. David G. Galati is a co-founder and the Chief Scientist at TITAN Robotics Inc. Over the past two decades, he has applied optimization techniques in high dimensional space to the practical commercialization of advanced robotics. He focuses on developing robotic systems that act intuitively to gain end users' trust. Dr. Galati’s work includes UAV's, UGV's, and Mobile Manipulators across a wide variety of applications in numerous domains. He specializes in Coverage Problems, Trajectory Generation, and Multi-robot Collaboration. After earning his doctorate from the University of Pittsburgh Department of Electrical Engineering in 2004, he spent the next twelve years at Carnegie Mellon’s the National Robotics Engineering before moving on to TITAN Robotics. Dr. Galati is a US Patent holder and has built numerous award-winning systems.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
From Funding to Impact: How ARM Institute Projects Strengthen U.S. Manufacturing | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Sudhanshu Gaur

Sudhanshu Gaur

Vice President of R&D, Hitachi America and Chief Architect
Hitachi Astemo Americas

Sudhanshu, the Vice President of Hitachi America, leads the industrial Edge computing R&D program, fostering innovative solutions across various industry sectors. In tandem, he shapes the Industry 4.0 vision for digital transformation, covering the IT x OT technology stack across group companies like Astemo and Hitachi Rail. His work integrates emerging technologies such as 5G and Generative AI into manufacturing operations, enhancing efficiency and agility. His industry impact was recognized when he was named among the top 25 leaders by the SME in 2020.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Enabling Smart Factories with 5G-Driven Computer Vision – A Case Study | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 3:15 PM


Colm Gavin

Colm Gavin

Portfolio Development Manager
Siemens

Colm Gavin is Portfolio Development Manager for Siemens Digital Industries Software. With over 22 years at Siemens, he applies his experience in discrete manufacturing to help companies take advantage of new innovations with Industry 4.0.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Simulation and Virtual Commissioning for Discrete Production Systems | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 3:30 PM


Joe Gemma

Joe Gemma

Chief Revenue Officer
Wauseon Machine; McAlister Design & Automation

Mr. Joe Gemma has 35 plus years of experience working in the automation industry. Early in his career, he spent 12 years working for a System Integrator and then 20+ years working for Robotics OEM’s. Strongly supporting the industry by participating on the RIA Board of Directors and as past Chair, as well as severing on several committees.  He currently serves on the Technology Sector Board of the Association for Advancing Automation. He has served on the Board of the IFR and past President for International Federation of Robotics. At Wauseon Machine, Joe is responsible for the front end of the business as the (CRO) Chief Revenue Officer. Previously he spent 5 plus years as the CEO/Chief Regional Officer for KUKA Robotics Division - Americas. Spending 18 years at Stäubli, Mr. Gemma was CEO the Stäubli Group North America. Until 1997, he worked for the US enterprises, Advanced Technology Systems, Crellin Technologies and Corner & Lada, working in engineering, project management, business development and sales management.

Mr. Gemma currently serves on various committees of the (A3) Association for Advancing Automation, which covers the North American automation industry. Joe is committed to working to get broader visibility of the automation industry in general.

Session(s):

Educator Day
The Industry Needs You | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Brian Gerkey

Brian Gerkey

CTO
Intrinsic

Brian Gerkey is currently CTO at Intrinsic, working to democratize access to robotics. He was previously CEO of Open Robotics, building open source software and hardware for the global robotics community. Before that, he worked at Willow Garage, the SRI Artificial Intelligence Center, the Stanford Artificial Intelligence Lab, and the USC Interaction Lab.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
How Ease-of-Use Automation is Empowering Industries | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 1:45 PM


Mohua Ghosh

Mohua Ghosh

Principal Engineer, Industrial Automation
Schneider Electric

Mohua Ghosh is a Principal Engineer in Industrial Automation at Schneider Electric, residing in North Carolina. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree from India in Electrical Engineering and a Master of Science degree from USA (Utah State Univ.) also in Electrical Engineering.

Mohua has been with Schneider Electric for 19 years, starting her journey as a trainee engineer in Motion Control & Robotics at Schneider Electric, Germany. As a trusted engineering advisor for many Schneider Electric customers and channel partners, she helps them design and develop high-performance systems with multi-technology integration.

Mohua is also a Schneider Electric Global Certified Technical Expert; in this role, she contributes to innovation projects in the automation and software domains.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Digital Twins and Gen. AI : How Innovative Technology Assistants are Reshaping Automation | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 3:00 PM


Simone Gianotti

Simone Gianotti

Application Engineer Manager
Elmo Motion Control Inc.

Simone Gianotti is an Application Engineer Manager at Elmo Motion Control. Before joining Elmo, he held numerous positions at Schneider Electric over an eleven-year period, mostly dealing with motion and safety. He holds a Bachelor of Engineering degree from Politecnico di Milano and received certification as a Functional Safety Specialist from TUV Nord Akademie in 2011.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Functional Safety | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 4:15 PM


Adam Gluck

Adam Gluck

Founder & CEO
Copia Automation

Adam Gluck was an early hire on Uber's driver engineering team and later was the founding engineer on Uber's engineering strategy team. At Uber, Adam worked on multiple rewrites of Uber's driver app, the processes to ship the driver app to millions of drivers each month, and helped redesign Uber's overall microservice architecture. He founded Copia to bring the same best practices that top-tier engineering organizations use to the fundamental technology that runs our economy.

Adam was recently recognized in Forbes 30 under 30 2022 in the category of Manufacturing and Industry.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Modern Backup Strategies to Minimize Risk and Maximize Efficiency | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 3:30 PM


Ed Goffin

Ed Goffin

Vice President, Product Marketing
Pleora Technologies

Ed joined Pleora in 2013 and is responsible for overseeing product and marketing strategies for our video connectivity portfolio and expansion into AI for manufacturing to ensure the company delivers the best solutions to our customers. Over his 25-year career, he has held media relations, marketing, and investor relations roles in the telecom and machine vision industries and has been widely featured as an event speaker and author on topics ranging from packet switching and network timing to real-time vision and AI solutions for automation and manufacturing.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Advances in AI-Powered Machine Vision Inspection | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Evan Gonnerman

Evan Gonnerman

Product Portfolio Manager
Concept Systems, Inc.

Evan Gonnerman is a robotics veteran devoted to pushing the boundaries of integrated technology in the advanced manufacturing space. With an academic background in mechanical engineering paired with 6+ years of industry experience in programming and commissioning high-speed, cutting-edge robotic solutions, Evan understands common pain points with full-solution robotics for manufacturers. During his career, Evan has acted at every level of solution development and deployment. 

As an applications engineer, he worked hand-in-hand with customers to bring their highly personalized robotic systems to life. 

As a lead mechanical and controls engineer, he designed high-speed, dynamic turnkey robotic work cells using Nachi, KUKA, FANUC, and custom servo-driven robots from the ground. 

In his current role as the Product Portfolio Manager at Concept Systems, Evan oversees a development team of software engineers, mechanical and electrical designers, and automation enthusiasts. With a suite of automation solutions ranging from off-the-shelf robotic paint systems to high-precision 6-degree of freedom advanced collision avoidance software, Evan’s product team is always pushing the bounds of the technological landscape is capable of.

Outside of work, Evan is married to his wife Hailey, is the father to his 2-year-old daughter Luna, and thrives in the Pacific Northwest camping, hiking, skiing, and generally adventuring.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Exploring Modularity in Robotics Work Cell Design | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Anatoli Gorchet

Anatoli Gorchet

CTO
Neurala

Anatoli has over 20 years of experience developing massively parallel software for neural computation, he is a pioneer in applying general-purpose computing on graphics processing units to neural modeling. Anatoli has spoken at every major neural network conference as well as at GTC, DARPA, The National Institute for Aerospace and a keynote at the Embedded Systems Conference. He holds several patents, has authored over 30 publications on neural networks, and advises Fortune 500 companies on how to use AI to improve operational efficiencies. He has a PhD in Cognitive and Neural Systems, Boston University; an MS in Computer Science.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Living at the Edge: The Era of AI, Everywhere in the Production Floor | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 10:15 AM


Satyandra K. Gupta

Satyandra K. Gupta

Co-Founder & Chief Scientist
GrayMatter Robotics

Dr. Satyandra K. Gupta is a Co-Founder and Chief Scientist at GrayMatter Robotics. He also holds Smith International Professorship in the Viterbi School of Engineering at the University of Southern California and serves as the founding director of the USC Viterbi Center for Advanced Manufacturing. He served as a program director for the National Robotics Initiative at the National Science Foundation from September 2012 to September 2014.  Dr. Gupta’s research interests are physics-informed artificial intelligence, computational foundations for decision-making, and human-centered robotics and automation. He has published more than four hundred technical articles in journals, conference proceedings, and edited books. He is a fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME), and the Solid Modeling Association (SMA). He serves as a member of the Technical Advisory Committee for Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing (ARM) Institute and a member of the National Materials and Manufacturing Board (NMMB).

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Leveraging AI to Deliver Human-Centered Automation | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:15 AM
Enhanced Robotic Abrasive Methods Through Proper Abrasive Selection and AI Enabled Processing | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 4:15 PM


Michael Haas

Michael Haas

Vice President
FerRobotics

Michael Haas has a sophisticated technical background in mechanical engineering completed with international sales skills. He is leading North American operations as VP of FerRobotics INC. With his extraordinary expertise, he is a regular speaker at events and supports the FerRobotics customer network in the automotive, aerospace, and general industries.

Since 2015 Michael is the FerRobotics US expert in sensitive automation. Prior to that, he worked as a leading sales expert and oversaw contract management and distributor development activities in the European, middle, and far east markets.

With offices in Phoenix and Chicago Michael has a strong commitment to the US, Canadian and Mexican markets. Michael serves currently as TAC member (Technical Advisory Committee) for the ARM institute and is a regular speaker at North American events from Key Notes to educational lectures.

During Michael's time, FerRobotics INC got rewarded “The 20 most promising Robotic solution providers” by the CIO review and in The 10 Most Innovative Automation solution providers 2017 and again 2021 by Insight success.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Mistakes to Avoid When Using Robots for Finishing or Material Removal | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 3:30 PM

Automate Innovation Stage
Ready-To-Use Robotic Masking-Tape Solution For Your Robot | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 12:00 PM


Blake Hall

Blake Hall

Systems Engineering Project Manager
SCHUNK

Blake has supported the automation industry for over five years as an applications engineer focused on concepting and specifying automation equipment. Today, Blake is a project manager in a systems engineering group pairing standard automation equipment with custom solutions to solve challenging automation applications with advanced end effectors.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Robotic End Effector Technologies Adapted for Special Applications | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 3:15 PM


Mark Hanson

Mark Hanson

VP of Technology and Business Innovation
Sony Electronics

At Sony Semiconductors Solutions of America, Mark demonstrates and evangelizes the business value of “Extreme Edge Visual AI” solutions like the AITRIOS Edge AI platform and the unique AI-integrated Intelligent Vision Sensor – the world’s first. Mark and team work to ensure the industry makes the shift from AI/ML as experimental to a wide variety of scalable, real-world applications for use by developers, partners and customers alike. His 30+ year career in technology includes time at Synnex, Compaq Computers, HP, Webroot and Sony. Whether challenging the status quo in business innovation, delivering powerful lead vocals in his San Franciscobased rock band or building a robotic astronomical observatory from scratch, Mark’s energy, passion and vision motivate and help him build world-class teams that deliver successful business outcomes.


David Hart

David Hart

Director Business Development, Manufacturing
Ericsson

David is passionate about technology transformation, manufacturing, and supply chain. His work as Head of I4.0 Transformation at Ericsson's 5G Smart Factory in Texas led to the factory being recognized by the World Economic Forum as a Global I4.0 Lighthouse Factory. David has held leadership roles in manufacturing, sourcing and supply chain in consumer packaged goods, food & beverage and technology companies. David holds a degree in biology from UC San Diego and an MBA from Washington University in St Louis.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Private Cellular Networks: Lessons from Early Adopters in Manufacturing | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 11:30 AM


Chris Harwood

Chris Harwood

Director of Supply Chain & Business Intelligence
SUN Hydraulics

Chris Harwood leads the vertical business transformation, integration and strategic sourcing at Sun Hydraulics. This builds upon 25 years of experience in leading design and innovation in the commercial vehicle OEM and Tier 1 supply value chain in hydro-electric systems as the industry transitions to energy efficiency, sensor technology, data enablement and automation. He has held roles of increasing responsibility at John Deere including expanding the Construction & Forestry division’s testing and manufacturing footprint in China, leading design and innovation of Construction & Forestry equipment integrating digital transformation to serve customers with enhanced technology features for operator assistance, automation and increased precision in performance. Chris is passionate about building high performing global teams that foster inclusion and is a recognized for his holistic experience across the value chain of hydro-electric vehicle systems. He is a registered professional engineer and holds a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Waterloo.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Digital Fluid Power – Advances & Controls in Hydraulics & Pneumatics | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Jean-Pierre Hathout

Jean-Pierre Hathout

President Mobile Industrial Robots
Mobile Industrial Robots

Jean-Pierre Hathout is a highly experienced professional with a strong track record in the industrial space. He has spent over two decades working in various technical and managerial leadership roles globally.  

Jean-Pierre comes from a role as president of SIT Controls USA. Prior to this, he built a 17-year career at Bosch, including several international management roles. Jean-Pierre earned a Sc.D. in mechanical engineering from MIT and he brings deep technological expertise and global leadership skills including management of operations in the US, Germany, the Netherlands, Turkey and China.? He has successfully managed the integration of multiple companies acquired by Bosch.


Will Healy III

Will Healy III

Global Industry Segment Leader, Welding
Universal Robots

Will Healy III is enthusiastic about manufacturing, technology and workforce development. A Purdue University mechanical engineer who loves to share his passion for automation, Will is a leader at Universal Robots and with the Advanced Manufacturing Industry Partnership (AMIP) in Cincinnati. He speaks from personal experience about people-centric technology investments, managing culture change in organizations, bridging the manufacturing skills gap and creating value through automation. Will has more than 18 years of experience in a variety of industries including automotive, welding, and food & beverage.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Advances in Cobot Welding: Your New Welding Journey | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 4:15 PM

Automate Show Theater
Automation's Cybersecurity Minefield: The Trends and Tools in Navigating the Invisible Threats | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Brian Heater

Brian Heater

Hardware Editor
TechCrunch

Brian Heater is the Hardware Editor at TechCrunch. He worked for a number of leading tech publications, including Engadget, PCMag, Laptop, and Tech Times, where he served as the Managing Editor. His writing has appeared in Spin, Wired, Playboy, Entertainment Weekly, The Onion, Boing Boing, Publishers Weekly, The Daily Beast and various other publications. He hosts the weekly Boing Boing interview podcast RiYL, has appeared as a regular NPR contributor and shares his Queens apartment with a rabbit named Juniper.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Humanoid Robotics: Is It Their Time? | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 12:00 PM


Jane Heffner

Jane Heffner

VP Sales - Americas
MiR

Jane Heffner is the Vice President of Sales at Mobile Industrial Robots (MiR), responsible for all activities in the Americas including sales, application engineering, service & support and marketing in the US, Canada and LATAM. Jane is passionate about MiRs mission to extend industrial automation further into human scale operations as well as the technology behind it. Prior to joining MiR, Jane spent many years in various leadership roles in sales, marketing and product management across automation companies, industrial manufacturers and automotive Tier 1 suppliers.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
The Robotics Executive Roundtable: The Trends & Technologies Driving the Industry in 2024 | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Eric Hershberger

Eric Hershberger

Principal Application Engineer
Cognex

Eric Hershberger is a Principal Applications Engineer at Cognex with over 23 years of experience in machine vision integration and applications. He possesses expertise in programming robots, PLCs, and cameras. Eric is well-versed in various tips and tricks to streamline the resolution of challenging vision projects that often lack straightforward solutions. He dedicates significant effort to simplifying solutions for enhanced application support, and he thrives on tackling tough problems that challenge his analytical skills and critical thinking.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Machine Vision Made Simple | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 10:15 AM
Advances in AI-Powered Machine Vision Inspection | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Eric Hill

Eric Hill

Executive Director
SkillsUSA Illinois

Eric Hill is the Executive Director of SkillsUSA Illinois, Inc., overseeing nearly 10,000 students and instructors in career and technical education across the state. With a tenure spanning almost 20 years within SkillsUSA, Eric brings a wealth of experience, having served as a state and national competitor, state officer, and technical committee member. In his current role, he focuses on forging strategic partnerships to address workforce needs, aligning with SkillsUSA Illinois's mission of fostering world-class workers, leaders, and responsible citizens.

Previously, Eric held the position of Assistant Executive Director, where he managed conference operations and the State Championships. Based in Pekin, Illinois, Eric leverages his extensive business network to support SkillsUSA Illinois's initiatives. Beyond his professional commitments, Eric is deeply engaged in his local community, serving as an elected school board member, and chamber of commerce board member. Additionally, Eric is an entrepreneur, owning multiple local businesses. Through his multifaceted roles, Eric remains dedicated to advancing career and technical education and strengthening his community.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Hiring for the Future: How To Build an Automation Workforce | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Christopher Hoemeke

Christopher Hoemeke

Global Account Manager
Rockwell Automation, Inc.

Over 30 years of automation experience in more than 30 countries. I am now focused on IIOT and private networks

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Eliminating Drift and Hallucinations in Generative AI with RAG AI | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Mark Holcomb

Mark Holcomb

Owner
Dynamic Systems Engineering

Mark Holcomb is currently the owner of Dynamic Systems Engineering, a consulting company focused on engineering and business development. He studied at the University of Buffalo (MS 1994) and began his professional career at CSA Engineering (now Moog) in Palo Alto, California. In 1997 Mark started his own consulting company, focusing his work at KLA, a leading semiconductor equipment manufacturer. While at KLA, Mark conducted model testing and servo loop modeling, tuning, and testing. Joining Celera Motion in 2015, his early work focused on writing software for motor analysis and automated testing of motors and mechatronics products. In 2018 he became Applications Engineering manager, helping customers solve their motion control needs. In September of 2022, Mark joined Genesis Motion Solutions as Director of Product Management and Application Engineering where he supported a team of product managers and applications engineers, setting product roadmaps and helping customers and sales with pre and post sales technical support. In December of 2023, Mark returned to work as a motion control consultant, focusing his talents towards helping people solve precision motion challenges, both technically and commercially.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Applied Vibration Theory: A Guide to Vibration Troubleshooting and Measurement Techniques | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 2:30 PM
Introduction to Magnetism and Motor Basics | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 2:00 PM


Gregory Hollows

Gregory Hollows

VP of Product Strategy and New Product Development
Edmund Optics

Biography coming soon.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
The State of the Automation Industry - Leadership Roundtable | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 12:30 PM


Misa Ilkhechi

Misa Ilkhechi

Co-Founder, VP of Sales
Formic

Misa Ilkhechi is the Co-founder and VP of Sales for Formic, the leading provider of fully managed automation via a unique "Robots-as-a-Service" offering. Prior to launching Formic with Saman Farid back in 2020, Misa held various sales and business development roles at companies such as Universal Robots, Dunkermotoren USA Inc, MW Industries, Inc., Robert Bosch Tool Corporation NA and John Deere. He earned a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Illinois, Chicago.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
How Ease-of-Use Automation is Empowering Industries | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 1:45 PM


Rajesh Iyengar

Rajesh Iyengar

Co-Founder and CEO
Lincode Labs Inc.

Rajesh Iyengar boasts a track record of over two decades in the ever-evolving technology industry. With a strong background in AI, machine learning, and robotics solutions, he has been a driving force in the field. Rajesh has held pivotal positions as the Chief Technology Officer at Si3D Systems Pvt. Ltd. and PurpleData and has achieved two successful exits in Silicon Valley, showcasing both his entrepreneurial and technical prowess. Furthermore, he generously shares his expertise as an advisor to Rover Robotics and Lavorro while diligently overseeing the operations of Lincode as the Co-Founder and CEO. .

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Advances in AI-Powered Machine Vision Inspection | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 1:30 PM


John Jackson

John Jackson

Account Executive
Exotec

John Jackson has over 15 years of experience in the material handling industry. He excels in collaborating with clients across various sectors to integrate automated systems, providing the optimal solutions for their most complex challenges.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
How Lane Automotive Cut Order Processing Time to 15 Minutes | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Frank Jakubec

Frank Jakubec

Product Marketing Manager
Balluff Inc.

Frank Jakubec is a product marketing manager at Balluff Americas, where he leads the growth of the machine vision portfolio in the region. He has over 10 years of experience in B2B product and solution selling, with a focus on automation and machine vision technology. He holds a master's degree in business and commercial engineering from the Czech Technical University in Prague.

He collaborates closely with sales engineers to support their efforts and help drive business success. He oversees the release of new products, product introductions, and deal closures, as well as discounts and margins to ensure profitability. He has a proven track record of achieving double-digit growth for the machine vision market in the Americas. He is passionate about ensuring customer success and working on challenging and complex projects across various industries. He is an expert in customer relationship management, business relationship building, and presentations. He has also received multiple awards and certifications for his outstanding performance and skills.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Industrial Cameras: Beyond the Limits of Smart Cameras | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Michael Jensen

Michael Jensen

Product Manager - Industrial Machinery & Automation
UL Solutions

Michael is an industrial segment product lead in UL Solution’s Energy & Industrial Automation division. Michael focuses on advanced manufacturing for industrial market segments globally including robotics, additive manufacturing, machinery and control panels.

Michael is identifying business opportunities, creating and optimizing service offerings, and building capabilities within UL Solutions for industrial manufacturers and suppliers with advisory, digital, testing and compliance safety solutions. Industrial applications of focus include autonomous mobile robots, 3D printers, digital certification data, and advanced manufacturing innovation.

Prior to developing a focus on industrial product safety, Michael worked in product marketing for IoT and IIoT cybersecurity. Before joining UL Solutions, Michael worked as a marketing consultant for industry-leading 3D printing technology companies.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Leveraging UL Robotics Standards Testing to Meet Your Verification & Validation | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 10:15 AM


Wen Jiang

Wen Jiang

Boeing Designated Expert(BDE) in Factory Automation
Boeing Commercial Airplanes

Factory automation in Final Assembly and Delivery (FAD), Fabrication Hard Metals and Composite, Manufacturing Process.
 
Has extensive experience and knowledge of hardware, software, system integration in programmable logic controller (PLC), computer numerical control (CNC), Motion Servo Control, Robot, Enterprise-Control System Integration (ISA95), through control design with Siemens, Fanuc and Allen Bradley (AB), Ladder logic, Micro code, Assembly language, NC program, Human Machine Interface (HMI), Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA), C++, and Visual Basic.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Digital Thread and Digital Twins Used to Control and Monitor Real-Time Manufacturing Process at Boeing | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 2:30 PM


Tiansu Jing

Tiansu Jing

Product Manager
Siemens

Tiansu Jing is an accomplished product manager with a decade of experience across multi-national corporations. Based in Chicago, he excels in driving product innovation and market expansion. At Siemens Industry Inc., Tiansu manages industrial controller products, achieving significant revenue growth through strategic market analysis and product launches. His leadership led to the development of new markets, generating millions in revenue annually. Previously at Siemens Limited China, Tiansu managed a diverse portfolio, receiving accolades for exceptional performance. He also contributed to product innovation as a project manager in Siemens R&D. Tiansu holds a Master of Electrical Engineering from Northeastern University in China.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Overcoming Motion Control Technology Challenges: A Powerful Combination of Simulation, Virtualization, and Data Analytics for Industrial Drivetrain and Robotics | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 11:30 AM


Kevin Jones

Kevin Jones

VP of Sales
OnLogic

In leading the sales team at OnLogic, Kevin has had the privilege of working side-by-side with customers across a wide range of verticals who are looking to solve today's technology challenges. From Machine Vision and AI, to factory automation and SCADA deployments, the OnLogic team provides the hardware necessary for projects in nearly any environment. In combination with OnLogic's software and ecosystem partners, the team consults with customers across the world and bring the insight and experience necessary to tackle even the most ambitious programs.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Leveraging AI in Manufacturing and Logistics | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 2:30 PM


Matthew Jones

Matthew Jones

VP of US Sales and Operations
Micropsi Industries USA, Inc.

Matt Jones has been working in the automation world for the last 10 years, with his most recent 3 being at Micropsi Industries. Matt was the first US-based employee for Micropsi, which was founded in Berlin, Germany. Matt has helped build out the US team to 10+ people to help support the roll out of Micropsi's product, Mirai. Mirai is an AI system for controlling industrial robots. It enables automation where automation was previously not viable, making factories more productive, workspaces more ergonomic, and businesses more resilient.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
AI/Machine Learning Applications in Robotics | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 11:15 AM


Christelle Keefer

Christelle Keefer

Global Business Development Manager – GI-Education
ABB

Christelle Keefer is the Education Director and leads the Global Solutions Center for Education at ABB. She has developed turnkey robotic education packages including certification programs and curriculum for industry professionals, educators, and students in robotics and automation globally. She serves on the Robotics Technology Strategy Board for the Association for Advancing Automation (A3), A3 Education committee, and is a FIRST Robotics coach/mentor. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Human Resources and a master's degree in Instructional Design/Training and Development from Oakland University, and enjoys collaborating with industry professionals, educators, and students around the world to help prepare the workforce of tomorrow.

Session(s):

Educator Day
LUNCHEON PANEL DISCUSSION: Preparing our Workforce for Smart Manufacturing Careers | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 11:45 AM


Will Keller

Will Keller

Senior Manufacturing Engineer
General Motors

Will has spent almost 30 years working in manufacturing with a Focus on automation.

Will holds an MBA from NYIT, an MS in Manufacturing Systems Engineering from Stanford and a BS in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Minnesota.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Robotic Bin Picking Solutions in Automotive | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 10:15 AM


Holger Kenn

Holger Kenn

Director of Business Strategy, AI, Data and Emerging Technology
Microsoft Corp.

Dr. Holger Kenn is responsible for the technology strategy in the AI, Data and Emerging technology business development team at Microsoft, working with a cross-functional team building out the ecosystem of technology partners, standards bodies, and other innovation catalysts in the domains of AI and Data. He also represents Microsoft as the chairperson on the board of the OPC Foundation. Outside of Microsoft, Dr. Kenn has led international research teams in the domains of robotics, wearable computing and AI at several international research organizations. Dr. Kenn earned a Ph.D. degree from Vrije Universiteit Brussels in Belgium, designing operating systems for autonomous systems.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
AI in the Machine - AI and OPC UA in Industrial Manufacturing and Robotics | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 8:00 AM

Automate Show Theater
ChatGPT, Simulation & Beyond: How AI Advances Are Changing What’s Possible | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 12:30 PM


Steven King

Steven King

Product Manager
Omron

Steven King has been in the automation field for 35 years, working both as a developer and as a solutions engineer in the fields of mobile robots, machine vision and code reading. For the past seven years he has put that technical and field training into practice as a product manager for Omron Microscan’s lineup of Smart Cameras, Code Readers and Machine Vision Lighting with the goal of creating innovative, capable and simple to use products.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Advanced Vision Lighting | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 12:30 PM


Steve Kinney

Steve Kinney

Director of Training
Smart Vision Lights

teve Kinney is a machine vision expert who joined Pulnix America and entered the machine vision industry in 1998. Going on to work for Basler, JAI, CCS, and now Smart Vision Lights, he has many years of machine vision imaging experience and has become an expert in industrial cameras and imagers. Since starting work in the lighting sector of Machine Vision in early 2015, he now combines camera expertise with machine vision lighting to bring an expanded knowledge base to the machine vision market.

Steve has additionally been an active A3 member and a current member of the A3 Board of Directors as Vice Chair of the Vision & Imaging Technology Strategy Board. He has been a past chairman of the AIA’s Camera Link Committee, beginning with its inception in 1999. As chair of one of the major standards committees, he has also been a participant the G3’s Future Standards Forum.

Steve has also been a major material contributor and instructor for the A3 Certified Vision Professional (CVP) program in both the Basic and Advanced CVP Camera + Image Sensor Technology courses. Steve currently is the Director of Training, Compliance and Technical Solutions for Smart Vision Lights in Muskegon, MI.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Advanced Camera & Image Sensor Technology | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 3:00 PM


Steffen Klawitter

Steffen Klawitter

Digital Enterprise Lead Architect
Siemens

Steffen Klawitter is a Digital Enterprise Lead Architect with Siemens Digital Industries providing well-balanced visionary & practical leadership for strategic digital transformations in highly competitive industries, cutting-edge markets, and fast-paced environments. He has a proven track record of leading cross-functional, international teams to create long-lasting business value for enterprises in areas like enterprise & solution architecture, digital twin & virtual commissioning, industrial internet of things, blockchain-based supply chain traceability and edge AI for manufacturing & logistics.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Transforming Manufacturing with AI: From Development and Deployment to Optimization | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 11:15 AM


Michael Kleiner

Michael Kleiner

VP Edge AI Solutions
OnLogic

Dr. Michael Kleiner is the VP of Edge AI Solutions at OnLogic (www.onlogic.com). His mission is to bring OnLogic's history of providing innovative industrial computing hardware to the world of edge solutions and AI consulting, helping to best serve the company's growing list of customers who are deploying AI at the edge.

Michael joined OnLogic in 2015 to lead the company's Engineering and Product Management teams. Prior to joining Onlogic, Michael worked for over a decade in the DRAM industry, starting out as a circuit design Engineer and later building and leading development teams at locations in the US, Germany, and China. Michael loves technology and is passionate about growing teams and building businesses.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Leveraging AI in Manufacturing and Logistics | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 2:30 PM


Tom Knauer

Tom Knauer

Global Strategy Manager - Robotics & Automation
Balluff GmbH

Tom Knauer has more than 30 years’ experience in the industrial automation industry, with firms including GE Fanuc, Parker Hannifin, Omron STI and Balluff. He focuses on strategy, product management and business development for sensors, safety and networking. Recent activities include work on robotic, material handling, condition monitoring and general factory automation solutions and market development. Tom leads Balluff’s activities to evaluate and understand changes in robot and factory automation technologies and the marketplace, and helps direct Balluff’s strategy and technology development path based on this information.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Improve Uptime and Save Money – Getting Started with Condition Monitoring | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 11:15 AM


Keith Knight

Keith Knight

Director of Business Development
Invio Automation

Keith H. Knight is currently the Director of Business Development at Invio Automation. Prior to his current role, he was a Business Development Manager at Novanta, and held positions as the Product Manager, and Engineering Manager for HaydonKerk Motion Solutions and has spent his entire career in the arena of motion control. Prior to his professional career Keith graduated with honors from Wentworth Institute of Technology of Boston MA with a BS in Electromechanical Engineering.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Mechanical Motion Control Components and Subsystems | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 10:00 AM
Understanding Inertia and Reflected Inertia | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 11:00 AM


Chris Knorr

Chris Knorr

Vice President, Business Development North America
Eclipse Automation, Part of Accenture

With over 30 years in various progressive rolls with some of the world leading companies in the automation industry, Chris leads the Business Development team and strategy for Eclipse Automation, part of Accenture, in North America. 

Over the years, Chris has assisted countless companies in the transportation, life science and consumer product industries in developing their automation strategy and optimizing their manufacturing operations through automation.

Through working with a broad range of clients bringing new products to market, Chris has gained extensive experience in what strategies lead to a successful manufacturing automation program launch and has a passion for sharing these best practices through thought leadership opportunities.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Automated Manufacturing Scale Up: Planning for Success | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 10:15 AM


Alex Koepsel

Alex Koepsel

Sr Product Marketing Manager
Formic

Alex leads Product Marketing at Formic, a leading robotics company for manufacturers, co-packers, and logistics. Prior to product marketing in the robotics and semiconductor markets, Alex designed electronic defense systems for the U.S. Airforce and Navy as a Lockheed Martin engineer. He earned a Bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering from Marquette University and an MBA from Rollins College.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
How to Calculate ROI of Automation When the Investment is Zero with Robots-as-a-Service | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 2:30 PM


Vish Kolur

Vish Kolur

Senior Director, Manufacturing Solutions
Ericsson

Vish Kolur is a Senior Director, Manufacturing Solutions, at Ericsson. In this role, Vish leads the development, co-creation and innovation of Industrial IoT solutions. He has 20+ years of experience in Information and Communication Technology industry; managing diverse IT, Telco and CIO functions including: cloud and IoT solutions, product management, business development and sales.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Enabling Smart Factories with 5G-Driven Computer Vision – A Case Study | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 3:15 PM

Automate Show Theater
Private Cellular Networks: Lessons from Early Adopters in Manufacturing | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 11:30 AM


Jay Korpi

Jay Korpi

Principle Cybersecurity Advisor
NextLink Labs

As a Principal Cybersecurity Advisor for NextLink Labs, Jay puts his 21 years of military service and strong social engineering skills to work in some of the most creative ways possible. Before retiring from the Air Force he was responsible for handling and protecting sensitive, mission critical data for one of the top weapons systems in the arsenal. Jay also was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to secure government contracts for large medical facilities, gaining invaluable experience coordinating cross agency federal teams. After his military service he was able to put his social engineering and physical security skills to use as a Principal Cybersecurity Advisor leading red teams for one of the nation's largest municipalities. During these full-scope adversarial attack emulations he was able to improve access controls and information security through the analysis of procedures done correctly and those needing a little more improvement. While executing his duties as a social engineering expert, he has been a janitorial custodian and CEO of a billion dollar company all in the same day.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Automation's Cybersecurity Minefield: The Trends and Tools in Navigating the Invisible Threats | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Jason Kovarik

Jason Kovarik

Business Development Manager
OnLogic

Jason Kovarik is a Senior Business Development Manager at OnLogic. He focuses on developing relationships with integrators and end users to help them identify and find solutions to existing problems in their automation. Using his love for technology and interest in how automation helps companies thrive, he works to provide tailored solutions that exceed customer expectations.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
Overcoming the Challenges of Computer Reliability in Automation and Robotics | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 12:45 PM


Thomas Kuckhoff

Thomas Kuckhoff

Product Manager – Controllers and Industrial PC’s
Omron Automation America

Thomas Kuckhoff is the product manager for NX and NJ controllers, NY industrial PCs, as well as the Sysmac Studio software for Omron Automation in the Americas, where he champions the power of Sysmac solutions. Thomas has a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering and a master’s degree in business from Clemson University. A licensed engineer in the State of South Carolina and author of thirteen patents, he has been named Greenville’s Best and Brightest as well as receiving Clemson’s Roaring 10 Alumni award.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
All-In-One: Accelerating Robotic Success Through Holistic Factory Control | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Eric Kumar

Eric Kumar

Head of Customer Success
Corsha, Inc.

Eric Kumar is the Head of Customer Success at Corsha Inc. Eric is a technical professional with deep experience spanning in each phase of the customer lifecycle improving cross-functional and bottom line performance of a company. Eric joined Corsha to build a culture of customer excellence at the DC-based cybersecurity, focused on automating identity and access for machines. Corsha is an Identity Provider for Machines that allows the machines in an enterprise to securely connect, move data, and automate with confidence from anywhere to anywhere.

Eric has a proven track record of enabling customers to achieve success with complex solutions, increasing lifetime value with a focus in cyber security. Eric has been routinely recognized for above and beyond performance being able to communicate and deliver on a vision for internal and external stakeholders. Eric holds a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from The Pennsylvania State University and a Master of Science in Systems Engineering from Johns Hopkins University.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
From Funding to Impact: How ARM Institute Projects Strengthen U.S. Manufacturing | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Etienne Lacroix

Etienne Lacroix

CEO
Vention

Etienne is a business leader and entrepreneur with deep experience building and turning around engineering-intensive businesses. He’s the founder and CEO of Vention.

Before founding Vention in 2016, Etienne spent five years at McKinsey & Company as an Associate Partner with the Operations and Product Development Practices. In this role, he led enterprise-wide strategic, operational, and turnaround programs at global industrial and high-tech companies. Before joining McKinsey, he held various positions in product management, product development, and supply-chain operations at General Electric as part of the Technical Leadership Program.

Etienne holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering from the École de Technologie Supérieure.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
The Rise of the Advanced Manufacturing Team and DIY Industrial Automation | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 11:15 AM

Automate Show Theater
How Ease-of-Use Automation is Empowering Industries | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 1:45 PM


Rafael Larcher

Rafael Larcher

SINAMICS GP Drives Product Marketing Manager
Siemens

Rafael Larcher is a seasoned professional with 20 years of experience in the drives and motors industry. For the past decade, Rafael has held various positions within the Siemens Motion Control team, gaining a deep understanding of customer needs and industry challenges. Currently, Rafael serves as the Product Marketing Manager for the Siemens Digital Drive Train portfolio, where he is all about unlocking the future of manufacturing and harnessing the transformative powers of simulation, virtualization, and data analytics in optimizing manufacturing processes. A degreed Mechatronics Engineer, Rafael's current mission is to champion the digital drive train revolution and to translate tech wizardry into practical solutions to unlock manufacturing's hidden potential!

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Overcoming Motion Control Technology Challenges: A Powerful Combination of Simulation, Virtualization, and Data Analytics for Industrial Drivetrain and Robotics | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 11:30 AM


Daniel Lau

Daniel Lau

Professor
University of Kentucky

Daniel L. Lau (Senior Member, IEEE) received the B.Sc. degree (with highest distinction) in electrical engineering from Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN, USA, and the Ph.D. degree from the University of Delaware, Newark, DE, USA, in 1995 and 1999, respectively. He is currently a Professor and the Director of graduate studies for electrical and computer engineering with the University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY, USA. His research interests include image and signal processing, 3D imaging, and machine vision. His work has also been featured in trade magazines such as Imaging Insight, Prosilica Camera News, and Inspect Magazine.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Using AI for Semantic Segmentation in Uncontrolled Environments | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Sam Leboe

Sam Leboe

Product Manager
Framos Technologies

Sam Leboe is a Product Manager at FRAMOS, with over 10 years of experience in Machine Vision, IoT, and electronics manufacturing. Sam works closely with FRAMOS customers and engineering teams to build innovative solutions, leveraging leading-edge technology from our close partners at Sony, NVIDIA, and Intel.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
Navigating the Challenges of Building An Optical Module for Embedded Vision | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Alex Lee

Alex Lee

Marketing Development Manager
Doosan Robotics

With over 20 years in the automation industry, Alex Lee has held top executive roles at Yaskawa America, Bosch Rexroth, Schneider Electric, and Accenture. He currently serves as the General Manager for Doosan Robotics Americas. Mr. Lee has a degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
Doosan Robotics – Becoming the First “Solutions Platform Company” | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 12:00 PM


Chan Lee

Chan Lee

CEO
Floatic

Chan Lee is CEO and co-founder of Floatic, a company that provides robotics solution for e-commerce warehouse automation. Chan graduated from KAIST with a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering, where he focused on gaining extensive knowledge and study on the robotic industry.  He also brings a wealth of practical experience in the field of robotics and business with his past experience in Kakao Ventures’ investment team, robot engineer for Delivery Hero’s Robot Business Unit and Naver Labs’ Robotics Team.  His deep passion for driving innovation and growth in the robotics and automation industry  has been recognized by multiple stakeholders including Forbes, listing Chan as one of the ‘30 Under 30’ in Korea.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Real-World Use Cases: Step into the South Korean E-Commerce Warehouse Industry and Discover How to Deliver A Successful Automation Experience to the Users | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 4:15 PM


Hongsuk Lee

Hongsuk Lee

CEO
Neurocle Inc.

Hongsuk Lee, CEO of Neurocle, is a dedicated professional with a solid background in business administration. He graduated from Seoul National University in 2015 and has since built a successful career in the field of Market Analysis, gaining valuable experience in the industrial sector.

In his current role as CEO of Neurocle, Hongsuk Lee is focused on the development of their flagship product, an auto deep learning vision software designed for universal accessibility. This software caters to a wide range of applications, including semiconductor, batteries, automotive, and food packaging industries.

Hongsuk Lee will be joining us to discuss Neurocle's deep learning vision inspection software and its versatile applications across multiple industries during the conference.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
The Future of AI Vision Inspection: How to Maximize Inspection Accuracy Using Auto Deep Learning Vision Software | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 10:00 AM


Tom LeFavor

Tom LeFavor

Account Manager
LINAK U.S.

Tom LeFavor is an Account Manager at LINAK US, specializing in linear motion technologies for collaborative palletizing and automation. With a focus on fostering strong relationships, Tom collaborates closely with integrators, distributors, and end users, offering custom-made solutions tailored to their specific automation needs. Leveraging his expertise and the backing of LINAK's global resources, Tom delivers unparalleled support, empowering clients to optimize their operations with cutting-edge motion solutions.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
ELEVATE Cobots to the Next Level with LINAK Lifting Columns | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 3:00 PM


Jim Lenox

Jim Lenox

Vice President of Global Sales
Sony Electronics

Jim Lenox is the Global Vice President of Sales for Sony AITRIOS™, where he oversees the complete sales strategy and operations for AITRIOS, as part of Sony Semiconductor Solutions. 
 
Prior to this role, Jim served as VP of Worldwide Sales at Klarity Intelligence, LightStep (acquired by ServiceNow), and BlueData (acquired by HPE) and spent nearly 14 years at VMWare in a variety of leadership roles that led him to reside in Tokyo and Singapore. Jim holds a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Syracuse University, M.S. in Systems Management from University of Southern California, and M.A. in Asian Studies from the University of the Philippines. 

Jim is a veteran of the United States Air Force and resides in San Francisco.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
How Vision AI Can Identify Errors and Inefficiencies from Processes to Production | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 4:30 PM


Adi Leviatan

Adi Leviatan

President - Abrasive Systems Division
3M

Adi Leviatan is the President of the Abrasive Systems Division in 3M. In this capacity, Adi has responsibility for driving business growth and expanding profitability for 3M’s $1.5B industrial abrasives business. She is responsible for developing and implementing a global business strategy; directing the creation and execution of a long-term product development roadmap to maintain 3M’s technology differentiation in abrasives; and building a new business in robotics & automation systems for material removal.

Prior to this role, Adi served as Vice President in 3M’s Industrial Adhesives and Tapes Division, where she led the $2B industrial bonding business. Prior to that, Adi served as Vice President, Strategy & Business Development for SIBG, where she held responsibility for the development of the business group strategic direction, execution of strategic initiatives and M&A activity.

Before joining 3M, Adi was a Partner with the management consulting firm McKinsey & Company, serving clients in the industrial, transportation and technology sectors in the US, China, East Africa, Israel and Europe. Earlier in her career, she was a Project Director at Kamsky Associates, a boutique consultancy in Beijing. Prior to that, Adi served as a Military Intelligence Analyst in the Israeli Defense Forces.

Adi holds a bachelor’s degree summa cum laude in Economics and East Asian Studies from Hebrew University in Jerusalem and diplomas in Mandarin Chinese from Peking University and Tsinghua University in China. She is a Board Member of the Jewish Federation of Greater St. Paul and together with her husband Eli is raising three young children: Yotam, Yael and Tamar.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
The Robotics Executive Roundtable: The Trends & Technologies Driving the Industry in 2024 | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Bernhard Lichtenauer

Bernhard Lichtenauer

Head of Marketing and Product Management Automation Technology II
Dr. Johannes Heidenhain GmbH

At HEIDENHAIN he is responsible for product management for inductive encoders. Through his continuously innovative mindset, he motivates teams within the company to think outside the box. His focus is on motor feedback applications in general automation and robotics.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Enabling A New Era of Motor Design | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 3:15 PM


Charlie Liu

Charlie Liu

Global Vice President of Technology
TWS Technology

Charlie Liu is the member of the Board and Global Vice President of Technology.

Charlie leads the global Technology organization towards achieving TWS' greatest potential in the competitive renewable energy industry and delivering TWS' full value proposition across all global customer segments, via innovative technologies and applied engineering developments. He is responsible for the end-to-end product design and development, including efforts to develop new innovative technologies and software in the new Li-ion battery solutions.

With over 20 years of U.S. work experience in the fields of communications, semiconductors, multimedia, internet and control systems, Charlie has gained extensive technical knowledge and a wealth of leadership and management skills in various industry leading companies, including General Motors, Texas Instruments, Ericsson and Sony Ericsson. As the CTO of Sony Ericsson Greater China, he led his team to promote technology innovations and achieved great success.

Charlie holds a MS degree in Physics and a MS degree in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EECS) from the University of Illinois. He also completed advanced leadership and management training from the Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina. Charlie published 40 international patents and has also published many papers in the IEEE Journals, Journal of the Optical Society of America, and other publications.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
Power Up Your Robot with Intelligence | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 3:00 PM


Adam Livesay

Adam Livesay

Founder
Elevat, Inc

Adam is the Co-Founder at Elevat, an industrial IoT company focused on connecting the industrial world. Elevat specializes in working with OEMs to connect their machines and deliver the next generation of Service, Aftermarket Parts, Utilization, and Warranty. Elevat enables businesses that manufacture and use machines to compete more effectively in the rapidly evolving global market. Elevat connects supply chains and entire partner ecosystems, enabling real-time data-driven decision-making across company boundaries. The Elevat solution aligns suppliers, OEMs, and distributors so that operators have exactly what they need when they need it. It is no longer sufficient to simply have the highest-quality or best-performing machine. Going forward, world-class companies must deliver the most intelligent machines.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Digital Fluid Power – Advances & Controls in Hydraulics & Pneumatics | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Andrew Long

Andrew Long

CEO
Cyth Systems

Andy Long founded Cyth Systems in 1999 after working for several years on test engineering projects large and small. His earliest experience was for the British Aerospace Military in roles of Flight Test, Information Services, and Marketing. He later developed test systems for aerospace, automotive, and biotech applications. Cyth Systems grew rapidly and began developing the procedures, skills, and experience to help customers around the world develop successful Machine Vision applications. Now, thanks to Cyth's AI-based Machine Vision software NeuralVision, clients for the first time ever have total control of their machine vision systems performance without being dependent on an external vision expert and without any prior programming experience.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Introduction to Machine Learning | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Mariana Lopez Martinolich

Mariana Lopez Martinolich

Application Engineer
Opto Engineering

Mariana Lopez Martinolich is the lead Application Engineer at Opto Engineering's USA branch and is part of the team that supports the American, Canadian, and Latin American markets. She received her B.Sc. degree in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Houston in 2021 after having completed several research-focused internships in the fields of Nanotechnology, Neuroimaging, and Genetics at Rice University, University of Houston, and University of Texas Health Science Center.

Mariana began her career in Machine Vision in 2021 as an Application Engineer at Opto Engineering's Houston office, where she is responsible for leading technical discussions, performing feasibility studies, and presenting technical trainings on key Machine Vision concepts.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Special Lenses for Top and Side Inspection with Just One Camera: Advantages vs. Multi-camera Systems and Latest Innovations | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 4:15 PM


Daniel Loucks

Daniel Loucks

Sr. Imaging and Measurement Systems Engineer
Corning Inc.

Dan Loucks is a Sr. Imaging and Measurement Engineer who works for Corning Incorporated, developing novel machine vision solutions. In this role, Dan partners with Corning’s businesses to build and sustain Corning’s manufacturing as a differential advantage by deploying measurement systems that support manufacturing process control and inspection of Corning products. Prior to his current role, Dan spent 13 years in the medical device manufacturing industry as a Sr. Manufacturing Engineer. Dan brings his passion, knowledge, and expertise of developing new products, manufacturing processes and custom vision systems from concept to implementation to Corning Incorporated.

Dan has developed machine vision solutions for multiple industries, including Medical Device, Automotive, Aerospace, Defense and Consumer Electronics. At Corning, Dan has developed production machine vision systems for multiple Corning businesses including, Corning Display Technologies, Corning Environmental Technologies, Corning Life Sciences, and Corning Optical Communications. He has also supported numerous internal Research and Development applications. Solutions that Dan has developed for Corning include vision guided CNC machining, polarization camera systems for process control, and inspection systems used in the manufacturing of pharmaceutical vials intended for novel drugs and vaccines, to name a few.

Dan has a beautiful family, including his wife Alenna and their 4 children. Outside of work, Dan’s hobbies include quality family time and adventures, fly fishing, bee keeping and gardening. Dan also volunteers at his church where he coordinates and leads financial education classes as well as walking alongside of others through their own cancer journeys, to support in any way he can.

Dan holds a bachelor’s degree in Manufacturing Engineering Technology from Rochester Institute of Technology.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Metrology & 2D Calibration Techniques | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 9:00 AM


Robert Luchars

Robert Luchars

EVP
ECM PCB Stator Tech

Mr. Luchars is a tech entrepreneur with unique experience in motors, batteries, and renewable energy. Rob was introduced to ECM’s PCB Stator electric motor and CAD technology in November of 2019 and immediately jumped on board. Since then, he’s developed the Boston-based deep tech company’s sales and operational strategy, alongside ECM CEO Brian Casey.

Luchars started his career at ARK Invest in New York City as a research analyst specializing in industrial battery storage and photovoltaic cells in preparation for the launch of the ARKQ ETF. Through this research, he discovered the economics of solar in Australia were incredible. Rob packed his bags and spent three years traveling and working in the solar industry across Australia. There he facilitated a large variety of solar projects, from residential to large MW scale farms.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
How Electric Motor Design Innovation Will Advance Automation | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:15 AM


Jonathan Luse

Jonathan Luse

Industrial Solutions Management Director
Intel Corporation

Jonathan Luse leads Intel’s Industrial Solutions Management organization, which is responsible for defining, architecting and deploying software and silicon solutions serving the various industrial market segments including energy, process and discrete manufacturing and logistics industries. His team leads the industry evolve into next generation of industrial operations with processor and advanced software solutions for time sensitive control, business and manufacturing analytics and insights in ruggedized and harsh environments.

Prior to this role, he was the general manager of Intel’s internet of things roadmap planning and product line management, where he defined and architected processors and base software for Intel’s multi billion-dollar Internet of Things business. His career spans positions leading sales, marketing, and engineering positions and is the recipient of Intel’s Quality Award in 2014, Intel’s highest award for a business unit.

Prior to Intel, Jonathan held various marketing and management roles at Honeywell Industrial Control leading strategic, product, and industry marketing and competitive intelligence. He has published several technical papers on applying adaptive Neural Networks in control systems in the mining industry.

Jonathan holds an Electrical Engineering degree from The Ohio State University and an MBA from Arizona State University.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
The State of the Automation Industry - Leadership Roundtable | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 12:30 PM


Kat Maddi

Kat Maddi

Senior Manager, CPA
Wipfli

Kat Maddi, a Senior Manager in Wipfli’s Outsourced CFO and Controller service line, stands out for her consultative mindset and experience advising manufacturing, retail, and distribution clients. With a keen focus on optimizing accounting functions, Kat excels at identifying and evaluating best practices and process improvements. Her proactive approach empowers clients, offering tailored guidance to achieve strategic objectives and financial goals. Having worked as a CFO in different businesses, Kat has gained the ability to offer proactive guidance as she helps her clients achieve their immediate and future objectives.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Manufacturer’s Back Office Intelligent Automation Creates Labor Efficiencies | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 2:15 PM


Scott Marsic

Scott Marsic

Group Product Manager
Epson Robots

Scott Marsic has over two decades of experience successfully transforming diagnostic, technical, and business intelligence products into innovative, market-leading goods and services. As Group Product Manager at Epson America, Scott is responsible for developing strategic initiatives to help drive channel growth and end-user demand across the industrial robotics product category. Scott holds a BS from the University of California, Santa Cruz, an MS from the University of Southern California, and an MBA from San Francisco State University.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Automation 301: Improving Key Steps in Your Automation Process | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 2:30 PM


Ryan Marti

Ryan Marti

Product Manager – Industrial Cameras & Smart Cameras
Omron Automation America

Ryan Marti is a Product Manager at Omron Automation Americas. He brings 12+ years of experience in industrial cameras as well as expertise in machine vision. He is in charge of PC Based Vision solutions and the Smart Camera product line at Omron. Ryan has led multiple custom projects for large OEMs and end users, as well as specifying cameras for large products.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Inspect the Impossible, Seeing Beyond the Visual Spectrum | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 11:00 AM


Kevin Mauger

Kevin Mauger

President
Glide-Line

Kevin Mauger started working for the parent company of Glide-Line the day after college and bought the company 12 years into his career when it was at an all-time low. The company has multiplied in volume 5X since and is growing at 20%+ year over year. Personally, his entire life is based upon spending time with his family, figuring out a way to get out deep sea fishing, and supporting his Philadelphia Eagles. His vision for Glide-Line is to make it the world’s most flexible multi-strand conveyor solution with tools for customers allowing instantaneous response and control of their own destiny along with the fastest deliveries in the industry.


Craig McAtee

Craig McAtee

CEO and Executive Director
National Coalition of Advanced Technology Centers (NCATC)

Experienced CEO & Executive Director with a demonstrated history of working in the advanced manufacturing and workforce development / higher education management industries. Strong business development professional skilled in Nonprofit Organizations, Career Development, Coaching, Government, and Conflict Resolution.

Executive Director & CEO for the National Coalition of Advanced Technology Centers (NCATC), Principal of McAtee Ventures, LLC, and Director of Additive Manufacturing for Tri-C. Before starting his own consulting company in 2007, McAtee served as Executive Director of the Workforce and Economic Development Division of Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C) in Cleveland, Ohio for seven years. And, before that, he spent over twenty-five years in engineering and senior leadership positions for Swagelok Company, an international manufacturing organization, based in Cleveland, Ohio.

In addition to his role at NCATC, he provides direction, technical support, and external evaluation for several national grants including the Automotive Manufacturing Technical Education Collaborative (AMTEC), Weld-Ed (OH), Smart Grid Technicians (HI), Necessary Skills Now (TX), RCBI/Marshall Apprenticeship Works (WV), and others.

McAtee is also an active member of the Workforce & Economic Development Commission for the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) in Washington, DC, immediate past chair of AACC’s Council of Affiliated Councils (COAC), Co-Chair of the Workforce Industry Experience Working Group at America Makes, Director on the NextFlex Board for Workforce & Education in San Jose, CA. and member of the ARM Institute Education & Workforce Advisory Council in Pittsburg, PA.

He is actively involved with SME, SkillsUSA, FIRST Robotics, MSSC, NIMS, AWS, SACA, NC3, Urban Institute, and several other ManufacturingUSA workforce collaborations - including ARM, America Makes, LiFT, MxD, ReMADE, AIM Photonics, CESMII, CYMANII, and NIMBLE.

McAtee is also a BILT Academy Coach for 2020-2024 cohorts, a member of the 2021/22 BLU Manufacturing Recover Panel for the Biden Administration and a Keynote Speaker on “The Future of Work and Industry 4.0” across the nation, as time permits.

Session(s):

Educator Day
LUNCHEON PANEL DISCUSSION: Preparing our Workforce for Smart Manufacturing Careers | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 11:45 AM


Bob McCurrach

Bob McCurrach

Director of Standards Development
Association For Advancing Automation

Bob McCurrach has over 25 years of experience in the manufacturing and product development sector, with a focus on global engineering management, strategic program and process management, primarily for the nuclear, defense and automotive industries. He holds a BS in mechanical engineering from Lehigh University as well as an MBA from Georgia Institute of Technology. Bob joined the Association For Advancing Automation (A3) in 2011 as their Director of Standards Development for Vision & Imaging. He has been a key leader in A3’s standards development and coordination of vision standard development globally. Standards play a key role in the Vision & Imaging industry by ensuring interoperability of components, increasing market size, and shortening the time it takes to get new products to market.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Updates on Machine Vision Standards | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 3:30 PM


David Meadow

David Meadow

Chief Information Officer
Lane Automotive

David is a technology and operations executive with over 25 years of experience helping distribution, ecommerce, and retail organizations optimize and strategically transform their fulfillment operations. He has led the design and construction of multiple Distribution Centers, along with several enterprise software solutions including ERP, WMS/WES, and TMS.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
How Lane Automotive Cut Order Processing Time to 15 Minutes | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Matt Miller

Matt Miller

CTO/President
MobileDemand

Matt Miller founded MobileDemand in 2003 who recently celebrated its 20-year anniversary, and has 30 years experience in bringing technology to the logistics and supply chain industry. In 2016, Miller founded 4DMobile, a companion company offering software solutions for MobileDemand's line of rugged tablets focusing on computer vision and artificial intelligence geared toward improving logistics workflows. Miller is a technologist with a passion for bringing products to market, utilizing extensive sales and marketing experience and skills as well.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
The Future of Dimensioning is Here: Discover How AI-Powered Mobile Dimensioning Creates a New and Efficient Workflow to Capture Dimensions Anywhere | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 4:30 PM


Ramey Miller

Ramey Miller

HMI Product Marketing Manager
Siemens

Ramey Miller is the HMI Product Marketing Manager for the US with more than 18 years of industry experience and has been with Siemens for +6 years.


Alan Minney

Alan Minney

Global Lead Strategic Partnerships, Enterprise & Emerging Business
Ericsson

Alan Minney leads 5G innovation and new business development through strategic partnerships for Ericsson’s Enterprise & Emerging Business organization. He has expertise in driving digital transformation, collaborative innovation, and co-development strategies that deliver business value. He works closely with partners, and customers to utilize dedicated 5G connectivity solutions that enable new customer experiences, build engagement, and improve business outcomes.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Enabling Smart Factories with 5G-Driven Computer Vision – A Case Study | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 3:15 PM


Rashmi Misra

Rashmi Misra

Chief AI Officer
Analog Devices

Dr Rashmi Misra is the Chief AI Officer for Analog Devices executing an AI strategy across enterprise, silicon manufacturing and product for the intelligent edge.

Prior to this, Rashmi headed Data and Artificial Intelligence, Business Development, for Microsoft where she led Microsoft’s strategic partnerships in AI including those with OpenAI since 2019, Meta, NVDIA, Mistral, and in Automation and Robotics with Kawasaki, Figure.ai, Wayve, and others.

Working closely with ecosystem partners, as well as customers and engineering teams, Rashmi was responsible for proving leading-edge solutions and partnerships combining AI, Data, mixed reality, Web 3.0 and other emergent technologies at Microsoft.

Rashmi has been at the forefront of intelligent systems for over 20 years, managing network applications, cloud, media, IoT and M2M businesses for HPE where she was the Head of AI Solutions for High Performance Compute solutions.

Rashmi previously led Motorola's worldwide System Integration portfolio and was instrumental in deploying some of the first expert and AI systems on mobile networks. She owns six international patents for intelligent optimisation, automated network health and monetisation of traffic on telecom networks.

Rashmi has a doctorate in Artificial Intelligence on Multi-Agent Reasoning Systems, from Exeter University, UK and an MBA from Warwick University, UK.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
ChatGPT, Simulation & Beyond: How AI Advances Are Changing What’s Possible | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 12:30 PM


Glade Montgomery

Glade Montgomery

Senior Vice President of Strategic Partnerships
Project Lead the Way, Inc.

Glade Montgomery is a lifelong educator who prior to joining Project Lead The Way served for twenty-nine years in public education in Indiana. During that time, he held roles as teacher and administrator, most recently leading as the superintendent of schools in LaPorte, Indiana.  Glade is part of PLTW’s Impact Team and serves as Senior Vice President of Strategic Partnerships. His team works to develop partnerships with business and industry to connect the PLTW network to career learning experiences.  He has also held roles on the Engagement Team leading the East Region, as well as the Strategic Accounts team.  Glade also served as Chief of Staff, supporting the President and CEO. Glade earned doctoral, masters, and bachelor’s degrees from Purdue University. He received the 2010 Norbert Nelson Outstanding Educational Leadership Dissertation Award from Purdue University and was selected Administrator of the Year by the Indiana Association of Office Professionals in 2009.

Session(s):

Educator Day
PANEL DISCUSSION: Smart Manufacturing Workforce Development Best Practices | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Danny Murphy

Danny Murphy

Assistant Professor of Mechatronics
Central Virginia Community College

Danny Murphy is Assistant Professor of Mechatronics at Central Virginia Community College. His innovations in teaching center around the creation of student-focused, modern, short-form video content depicting real-world, hands-on, relevant education. He maintains active industry collaborations to keep his curriculum up-to-pace with trends in AI, robotics, and safety in advanced manufacturing.

Danny is the recipient of several teaching awards and is a National Science Foundation partner. He owns multiple organizations that mentor local and international students in their search for education and employment.

He is an automation consultant with 25 years of experience in controls engineering and has contributed to the development of over 75 pieces of production machinery including positioning controls for ALMA Observatory: the largest astronomical project on Earth.

Some of Danny’s professional achievements are as follows.

  • Proposal Co-Author, SCHEV FFEI, Machine Vision with Deep Learning (Preparing students to meet the labor shortage using AI Collaboration).
  • Co-Principal Investigator for NSF ATE grant 2202015 Improving Advanced Manufacturing Technician Education Using Industry Partnerships.
  • Curriculum Development: XLR8 STEM Creative Experimentation with Autonomous Vehicles with focus on student-produced short-form content.
  • Curriculum Development: Safety Circuit design with Banner Engineering.

Danny teaches PLC programming, robotics, machines, electronics, industrial electrical wiring, and STEM principles of engineering. He graduated with honors from DeVry University with a BS in Electronics Engineering in 1999 on a merit-based full-tuition scholarship.

  • Allen Bradley/Rockwell Automation Logix5000 Maintainer (Certified to teach Studio5000 Maintainer since 2019)
  • Fanuc HandlingTool Operation and Programming (Fanuc Teaching Certification estimated completion date summer 2024)
  • Fanuc HandlingPro Intro Plus (Roboguide)
  • UL508A Training on Industrial Control Panels
  • PLTW Digital Electronics Credential
  • PLTW Principles of Engineering Credential

Danny has also worked with the following robotics and automation platforms; Allen Bradley/Rockwell, Automation, AutomationDirect, Banner, BNTECHGO, Dold, EPC, Fanuc, Festo, Fluke, Hakko, LabVolt, Meanwell, Pepperl Fuchs, Phoenix Contact, Siemens, SICK, SMC, Tele, Turck and Vex.

Session(s):

Educator Day
A3 Educator of the Year Award Presentation | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 1:45 PM


Tyler Naatz

Tyler Naatz

Senior Application Engineer
3M

Tyler Naatz is a Robotics Application Engineer within 3M’s Abrasive Systems Division where he is responsible for working with robotics industry members to engineer optimum robotic abrasive processes to support manufacturers as they look to expand automation within their facilities. Tyler is heavily focused in metal fabrication applications. These applications include weld grinding and processing, satin finishing, stainless steel finishing, deburring, and much more. After obtaining his B.S. in Plastics Engineering from the University of Wisconsin – Stout in 2015, he joined Flambeau Inc. where he worked as an Automation Engineer prior to joining 3M in 2018.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
No One Does It Alone: What It Takes to Make a Partnership Work in Robotic Abrasive Processing | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 3:30 PM


Michael Nagle

Michael Nagle

Machine Vision Specialist
Baumer

Mike Nagle is a Machine Vision Specialist at Baumer. He earned his mechanical engineering degree from the University of Dayton. He has a demonstrated history of working in industrial automation with a focus on providing customer solutions to make their production more efficient, safer, and profitable.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Simple Smart Cameras for AI and Industry 4.0 | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 2:15 PM


Farukh Naqvi

Farukh Naqvi

Manufacturing Business Partner
Boston Beer Company

Experienced expert with a distinguished career spanning over two decades, renowned for proficiency in manufacturing execution, automation, and supply chain planning. Adept at skillfully guiding cross-functional teams to oversee supply chain, smart manufacturing, and business transformation initiatives across a spectrum of diverse business sectors. Actively engaged in thought leadership through participation in ISA (International Society of Automation) and possessing specialized expertise in cross-system production models.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Event Driven IT/OT Convergence for Smart Manufacturing | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 11:15 AM


Luis Narvaez

Luis Narvaez

Product Manager/Automation Specialist
Siemens

Luis is the regional product manager for controllers for Siemens USA. He brings over 10 years experience with automation technology in variety of industries ranging from theme park/entertainment to oil and gas and even machine tools/machining. Luis' pursuit for Smart Manufacturing makes him a subject matter expert in digitalization and industry 4.0 trends.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Delivering Superior OEE with Edge and Machine Connectivity | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 10:00 AM


Martin Naumann

Martin Naumann

CEO
drag and bot GmbH (part of KEBA group)

After studying mechatronics at Stuttgart University, Martin joined the department of Robot and Assistive Systems of Fraunhofer IPA, Stuttgart, Germany in 2005. In 2010 he started the group "Assembly Automation" at Fraunhofer IPA and became its group leader. From 2017 till today he is co-founder and CEO of drag and bot GmbH. Since 2022 drag and bot GmbH is part of KEBA group.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Why Ease-of-Use is Key for Flexible Robot Solutions…and How to Achieve It | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:15 AM


Gianpiero Negri

Gianpiero Negri

Senior Risk Manager - Robotics Safety
Amazon

Gianpiero Negri received the MSc degree summa cum laude in Computer Science – Electronic Engineering from Salerno University, a post MSc degree in Industrial Research, Mechatronics and Automation from CNR-ITIA (Italian National Research Council - Institute of Industrial Technologies and Automation, 2005). He also holds a Ph.D. in Applied Mathematics (dissertation title “A Game Theoretical Approach to Safe Decision-Making System Development for Autonomous Machines”).

He’s currently Principal Manager - WW Robotics Safety Engineering at Amazon Global Robotics (Mechatronics and Sustainable Packaging Customer eXperience), leading the worldwide CX Robotics safety and compliance team and managing safety systems innovation, research, development, implementation and certification for mechatronics/robotics system, safe artificial intelligence systems, safe integration of technologies in automated research and testing Lab environment.

In 2004 he joined Italian National Research Council (CNR) as researcher in the field of Mechatronics. Since 2007 he has been technical leader and scientific responsible of several R&D programs in the field of advanced mechatronics, robotics and industrial automation.

Since 2017 he’s a member of ISO technical committees and working groups focused on development of autonomous machine safety and functional safety standards: ISO/IEC JTC 1/SC42 – Artificial Intelligence, ISO TC 299/WG3 focused on industrial robotics safety/integrated robotic systems, etc. Since 2018 he’s an IEEE Computer Society – IEEE Software reviewer.

His current research interests include mechatronics, functional safety, automotive control systems, sensors, system engineering, robotics, electronic control system of advanced machines, scientific dissemination and artificial intelligence. He is author of several scientific and dissemination papers in the field of mechatronics, robotics and artificial intelligence, and he holds several patents in mechatronics and automotive related fields.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Machine Learning Applied to Robotics Product Development and Standardization | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Craig Nelson

Craig Nelson

Senior Product Manager
Siemens Digital Industries

Craig Nelson is a senior product marketing manager for high performance drive systems in the Motion Control Business of Siemens Industry, Inc. Craig has been with Siemens for over thirty years and, in previous roles, has held engineering positions in the field and in system design.  He has expert knowledge motion control systems across various applications and is an avid promoter and presenter of new motor and drive technologies.


Roberta Nelson Shea

Roberta Nelson Shea

Global Technical Compliance Officer
Universal Robots

Responsible for global UR product compliance, risk management, and reducing barriers to acceptance of UR robots for collaborative applications.  Over 45+ years’ experience in automation safety and standardization.

Honored as … 

  • Recipient of the 2023 Joseph F. Engelberger “Nobel Prize of Robotics” award (safety).
  • Recipient of the 2022 Goddard Alumni Award for Outstanding Professional Achievement by Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Worcester MA USA.
  • 1 of the “Twenty Women Making Their Mark in Robotics & Automation” by Smart Manufacturing (SME) in February 2021.
  • 1 of the “100 Women in Safety in 100 years” by the American Society of Safety Professionals (known then as ASSE) in 2011. One of the 100 Women – Making a Difference in Safety
  • Chair Emeritus of A3’s standardization activities, awarded in 2016. A3 was formerly known as RIA (Robotic Industries Association).
  • Past member of the board of directors of ANSI (American National Standards Institute) and of RIA (now known as A3).

National robot safety standardization activities:

  • Since 1982, the only consistently active robot safety standards expert.
  • Chair for 23 years of the US Robot Safety Committee (R15.06).  
  • Active for 45 years in various American National machinery safety standards.
  • Expert member of the NIOSH/ OSHA/ RIA Alliance.

ISO and US national standardization in automation and safety:

  • Convenor: TC299 WG3 Industrial robotics (ISO 10218 & TS15066).
  • Convenor: TC299 SG1 Study group on TC299 Robotics structure.
  • Expert member: TC199 Safety of machinery, TC110/SC2/WG3 Safety of industrial trucks & various IEC working groups.
  • Expert member in various US and Canadian standards committees: safety, robotics, plastics machinery and IEEE.
  • Certified Functional Safety Engineer (TÜV Rheinland).

BS Mechanical Engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) with a Masters degree in Advanced Safety Engineering and Management (ASEM) from the University of Alabama Birmingham. 

Before UR, lead Rockwell’s global safety component product management organization. Preceding Rockwell, held leadership positions at Symbotic, AMT and Pilz USA, with a career start at P&G.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Industrial Robot and Robot Application Safety: A Look At the New ISO 10218-1 and -2 | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 11:15 AM


David Nichols

David Nichols

CEO/Co-Founder
Society of Automation Software Engineers (SASE)

David Nichols is CEO and Co-Founder of Loupe, a jack-of-all-trades industrial automation company based in Portland, Oregon. He is also the founder of the Society of Automation Software Engineers (SASE), a growing peer-network at the intersection of automation and software engineering.

With a passion for creativity, collaboration and a healthy amount of exploration, he brings out-of-the box solutions to the field of automation. His vision has inspired unconventional and transformational approaches to Loupe and its community of peers.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
What is Automation Software Engineering? | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 12:45 PM
Value Shop: Building An Automation Practice Designed For This Century | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Gail Norris

Gail Norris

Director of Siemens Digital Industries Learning Services
Siemens Industry, Inc.

Gail Norris is the Director of SITRAIN – Digital Industries Learning for the US. Developing people is a passion well suited for her current role. She has been responsible for customer product learning services in the US since 2011 and has been the primary driver behind the development of a Continuous Learning approach, with the incorporation of Digital Technology.


Jason Okerman

Jason Okerman

Staff Product Manager
OTTO Motors

Jason Okerman holds an MBA from the University of Pittsburgh, and a Master of Electrical Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology. Jason’s initial work in robotics dates back to 2010 when he worked as a Robotics Software Researcher on applied machine learning and vision processing to enhance how robots can function in human spaces. As Staff Product Manager at OTTO Motors by Rockwell Automation, Jason has managed the company’s comprehensive autonomous mobile robot software suite. He has led strategic initiatives to deepen investment in robot fleet productivity, security, and analytics. Prior to joining OTTO Motors, Jason managed hardware and software initiatives for industrial inspection, replacing life-threatening human work with human-robot teleop tools which collected 1000x more data while keeping human inspectors safe. He has over a decade of experience successfully and efficiently launching new products that serve industrial applications, including electrical power, hazard monitoring, inspection, and industrial automation. Jason has more than a dozen patents from his work on product innovation.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
8 Key Considerations When Assessing Autonomous Mobile Robot (AMR) Vendors | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 11:15 AM


Jeffrey Oleske

Jeffrey Oleske

Business Area Manager - North America
Specim Spectral Imaging

Jeffrey B. Oleske, Ph.D., is an experienced spectroscopist and imaging specialist currently serving as the Business Area Manager for North America at Specim Spectral Imaging. He leads a talented group of Regional Sales Managers and Application Engineers in the mission to expand the hyperspectral market across the USA and Canada. With a Ph.D. from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, Dr. Oleske’s journey from a passionate scientist to sales leader showcases a blend of scientific acumen and business strategy. On behalf of Specim, he has prioritized HSI integration into a variety of industrial machine vision applications; including food & beverage, manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, mining, agriculture, and waste management. Dr. Oleske will leverage his extensive background in spectroscopy and hyperspectral imaging to showcase the transformative impact of HSI technologies on industrial machine vision, further establishing himself and Specim as leading authorities in advanced imaging solutions.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
Advantages and Applications of Hyperspectral Imaging for Industrial Machine Vision | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Georgia Olympia Brikis

Georgia Olympia Brikis

Director of Physics-Informed AI Research
Siemens

Olympia Brikis is the Head of Physics-Informed AI at Siemens where she works on building the next generation of industrial AI applications in automation, engineering, electrification, and mobility. With her team she focuses on industrial foundation models that have a deep understanding of the physical world and leverage industry-specific domain knowledge.

Prior to joining Siemens Olympia Brikis received her MS in Computer Science from Ludwig-Maximilians University of Munich. Since 2015, Olympia Brikis has been a visiting lecturer for courses on AI at the University of Bremen and University of Salzburg and serves as an independent expert to the European Commission on topics of Industrial AI, Manufacturing and Robotics.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
ChatGPT, Simulation & Beyond: How AI Advances Are Changing What’s Possible | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 12:30 PM


Nick Orf

Nick Orf

3M Abrasive Systems Division - Application Engineering Manager
3M

Nick Orf leads a Global Application Engineering team within 3M’s Abrasive Systems Division with a focus on new product development and robotic automation of abrasive processes. Nick has over 30 years of experience in the abrasive industry with nearly half supporting testing, training, and customer deployment of 3M’s abrasive portfolio through robotic and fixed automation methods development.

Nick and his team for work closely with robotics industry members to engineer optimum robotic abrasive processes to support manufacturers as they look to expand automation within their facilities. Nick is graduate of the University of Wisconsin – Madison in Chemical Engineering and currently located at 3M’s Customer Abrasive Methods Center in St. Paul, MN.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Enhanced Robotic Abrasive Methods Through Proper Abrasive Selection and AI Enabled Processing | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 4:15 PM


Sadiq Panjwani

Sadiq Panjwani

Global VP & General Manager
Teledyne FLIR IIS

Sadiq Panjwani is the General Manager of Teledyne Integrated Imaging Solutions where he leads the machine vision operating groups in 2D and 3D camera technologies and specialty imaging solutions for GIS, High-Definition Mapping, and Retail Analytics. Sadiq is responsible for guiding the organization’s vision, leading business strategy, and driving operational excellence across all functions to bring remarkable innovations to the market and enhance customer experience. He is a Software Engineer by trade and passionate about technology and building high-performance teams.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
Robotic Vision: Creating Highly Accurate, Reliable, and Affordable Solutions | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Sarang Panse

Sarang Panse

Co-Founder
Robot Safety Center Inc.

Sarang is a progressively experienced and innovative technology leader with extensive experience in leading and growing data and analytics-led SaaS organizations. He is leading a team of 14 people with high-end technical skills mainly in web, mobile, and robotics automation technologies at his India & USA office locations. In the past two decades, Sarang has developed a good network & relationships with various businesses and business management leaders in India & USA. He is helping both countries to drive growth through cost-effective process delivery, robotics automation & innovative new Digital Products. Sarang holds a Bachelor in Computer Engineering from Shivaji University.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Global Business Opportunities for Automation Panel, followed by the International Trade Reception | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 4:00 PM


Rushiraj Patwardhan

Rushiraj Patwardhan

Safety Engineer
Pilz Automation Safety L.P

Experienced safety engineer in machinery safety, risk assessments, safety validations, control system design, CE marking, delivery of safety trainings with demonstrated history of working in the industrial automation industry. Strong engineering professional with Master of Engineering - MEng focused on Electrical Power System & Certified Machinery Safety Expert (CMSE) as well as Certified Expert in Functional Safety (CEFS).

Session(s):

Automate Conference
AGV Validation | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Jerry Perez

Jerry Perez

Executive Director - Global Accounts
FANUC America Corporation

Jerry Perez is an Executive Director - Global Accounts and Manager of the Business Develop Group at FANUC America Corporation, consulting global corporations in topics such as automation roadmap fulfillment, workforce development, and value stream transformations. Over the past 20 years, Jerry has been a leader in the expansion of robotics in multiple markets from defense and automotive to electronics and medical device manufacturing. He graduated from the University of Michigan with a B.S. in Engineering and resides in Royal Oak, MI with his wife and two kids.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Successful Automation Strategies: Fast, Wide Scale Implementation for Small or Global Organizations | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 1:30 PM
Strategies for Making Advanced Robotic Manufacturing Technology Accessible to System Integrators and End Users | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 2:30 PM


Florian Pestoni

Florian Pestoni

CEO & Co-founder
InOrbit

Florian is an accomplished business leader and author, with hands-on experience bringing innovative products to market. As InOrbit’s CEO and co-founder, Florian leads strategy, fundraising and go-to-market activities. He is passionate about raising awareness around the new category of RobOps, sharing his compelling vision for the evolution of robotics and the future of work. He is also a co-founder of the Robot Operations Group, a community-led organization of experts in scaling robot deployments. Florian is an investor, advisor, board member, and mentor to young startup founders.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
It Takes A Village: Fostering an Ecosystem to Solve the Biggest Challenges | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 2:30 PM


Søren Peters

Søren Peters

CEO
HowToRobot

Søren Peters is the founder and CEO of the global automation marketplace HowToRobot.com and founder of Gain & Co, independent advisors on robots and automation.

A serial entrepreneur, Søren has previously founded, led, and successfully exited a series of companies in the IT industry. Søren was born and raised in Denmark where he founded Gain & Co and HowToRobot. Today, he is spearheading HowToRobot’s expansion in the United States and Europe, helping local manufacturers take on automation and find the right solutions and suppliers.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
The Road to Mass Adoption of Robotics | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Gareth Powell

Gareth Powell

Product Director
Prophesee

An industry veteran with more than 35 years of experience in semiconductors, specializing in CMOS imaging after the acquisition of VLSI Vision (early pioneers in CMOS sensing technology) by ST Micro as applications engineer, then later as technical marketing/business manager. Gareth joined (Teledyne-)e2v, in 2006 as strategic marketing manager appointed with the task of building a CMOS imaging business from the ground up targeting professional/industrial markets.

Early 2022, Gareth joined Prophesee as Product Marketing Director to contribute to bringing to market their pioneering Event Based Sensing technology and products.

After graduating with a degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from Swansea University in the mid-80s, Gareth relocated from UK to France to join ST Micro in Grenoble and has remained there ever since with his wife and three children. Gareth is also passionate about music and is a performing musician and recording studio owner in spare time.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Advances in AI-Powered Machine Vision Inspection | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Ashutosh Prasad

Ashutosh Prasad

Founder & CEO
KoiReader Technologies, Inc.

Ash is the Founder & CEO of KoiReader Technologies and has broad-based background in Management, Strategy, Innovation, and Technology Consulting, with reputed organizations such as XPO Logistics, PwC, Ernst & Young, Blue Yonder, and Oracle Corporation. He comes with 20+ years of experience in Logistics and Supply Chain industry, and has been a guest or a keynote speaker at various supply chain conferences including at MIT.

Ash pioneered Applied AI in Logistics and Supply Chain and has filed over 20 patents as part of KoiReader Technologies.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Building an AI Operating Model | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 10:00 AM


Suresh Rama

Suresh Rama

Portfolio Development Executive
Siemens

Suresh C. Rama is a thought leader in Smart Manufacturing and a Portfolio Development Executive who leads the application of Siemens' Digital Manufacturing portfolio of solutions for automotive customers. He has over 30 years of Manufacturing and Industrial Automation experience with Automotive OEMs, Suppliers and Line Builders. He has been instrumental in transforming businesses through digitalization during his tenure in various leadership positions in Engineering, Manufacturing, Quality, R&D/Innovation and Industry 4.0. He currently uses his vast experience in helping guide various customers in their digitalization journey in Smart Manufacturing. Suresh has a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from Texas A&M University and an M.B.A. from The Broad School of Business in Michigan State University.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Simulation and Virtual Commissioning for Discrete Production Systems | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 3:30 PM
Delivering Superior OEE with Edge and Machine Connectivity | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 10:00 AM


Ritch Ramey

Ritch Ramey

Director of Education
Association for Advancing Automation

Ritch has spent more than 35 years in the advanced manufacturing field promoting education and workforce development. As the Director of Education at the Association for Advancing Automation (A3) Ritch can support and develop educational programming and workforce development initiatives for our more than 1200 members. He enjoys promoting career exploration and training in the smart manufacturing, Industry 4.0, robotics, and automation fields. He is skilled in program development, marketing, public speaking, grant writing, training, curriculum development, Learning Management System Platforms, coaching, and Computer-Aided Design (CAD). He has been a local, regional, and state SkillsUSA CAD contest Coordinator. He also coordinated Ohio Vex Robotics State and local contests for many years as well as Outreach coordinator for the National Robotics Challenge from 2003 until 2022.

Ritch, as a PLTW certified instructor, has taught Digital Electronic (DE), Computer Integrated Manufacturing (CIM), and Engineering Design and Development (EDD) high school courses. Ritch is also certified and has taught Yaskawa Industrial and Collaborative Motoman Robotics, FANUC Robotics, Universal Robots, Parker Hydraulics, Rockwell Allen-Bradley PLCs, and SolidWorks classes. He takes great pride in being a professional and has a Bachelor of Science in Advanced Technology from Bowling Green State University and an Associate of Applied Science focused on Engineering from Marion Technical College. He also completed the Career Tech Education Certification from the University of Toledo.

Ritch also serves on the Arm Institute Educational Work Force Advisory Committee and has received various awards and honors such as the Marion Technical College Hall of Fame 2021, ARM Institute Champion Award for 2022, and the National Robotics Challenge Dr. James Hannamann award for 2019.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Hiring for the Future: How To Build an Automation Workforce | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 10:30 AM

Educator Day
Welcome, Connect, Learn: A3 Introduction and Curriculum Highlights | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:15 AM


Mukesh Ranjan

Mukesh Ranjan

Vice President of Product
Dexterity

Mukesh Ranjan is Dexterity's Vice President of Product. He joined the company in 2023 to expand the company's product portfolio to include new applications for AI-powered warehouse solutions and enterprise software.

Mukesh is a seasoned product leader with over 15 years of experience in building native AI/ML SaaS products for B2B enterprises with responsible and explainable AI at the core. He previously acted as the SVP of Product at Noodle.ai (AI/ML Products and Platform for Supply Chain & Manufacturing) as held leadership and operating roles at Intel and Kearney.

Mukesh holds a PhD in Computer Science & Engineering from the University of Cincinnati as well as an MBA from U.C. Berkley's Haas School of Business.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
The Future of Warehouse Robotics is Mobile and Multi-Use | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 3:30 PM


Rishi Ranjan

Rishi Ranjan

CEO
GridRaster

Avid technologist with 20+ years in designing complex XR Cloud platform network-based solutions. Provided technical leadership and expertise in wireless system design– mobile & infrastructure, keeping in view the next generation application requirements at Broadcom, Beceem and Qualcomm with 7 patents. Deep expertise in technology vision and translating it into successful product. Passionate about solving challenging problems by using deep expertise in wireless technologies, cloud computing, AR/VR/MR and connected devices. Currently focused on “Bringing immersive AR/VR for Everyone” by solving some of the key technology challenges and make it accessible to masses. Key Expertise in Product & Strategy, Fundraising, AR/VR, Wireless & Mobile technologies, Deep Learning, System Design and Architecture, Cloud Computing, H.264.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
From Funding to Impact: How ARM Institute Projects Strengthen U.S. Manufacturing | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Erin Rapacki

Erin Rapacki

NVIDIA
Product Marketing Manager, Robotics

Erin Rapacki is a senior product marketing manager focused on industrial robotics and advanced simulation. Before joining NVIDIA, Erin worked for various industrial robotics companies and was responsible for product strategy, marketing, and business development. She holds an MS in mechanical engineering from the University of Massachusetts, Lowell and a BS in industrial engineering from Northeastern University.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Accelerating AI for Industrial Robots with NVIDIA: From Simulation to Real-World Deployment | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 8:00 AM


David Reger

David Reger

CEO and Founder
NEURA Robotics

David Reger is a visionary in the field of AI-powered cognitive robotics. His groundbreaking work aims to redefine the role of technology in our lives by entrusting robots with everyday tasks so that humans have more time for humanity. By founding Neura Robotics in 2019, David laid the foundation for positioning cognitive robots as essential companions in our modern, socially connected world.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
The Robotics Executive Roundtable: The Trends & Technologies Driving the Industry in 2024 | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:30 AM
Humanoid Robotics: Is It Their Time? | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 12:00 PM


Matthew Robinson

Matthew Robinson

ROS-Industrial Consortium Americas Program Manager
Southwest Research Institute

Matt Robinson is the Program Manager for the ROS-Industrial Consortium – Americas, an industry-driven open source program bringing advanced manufacturing solutions for the industrial robotics community. Prior to his current role, Robinson was team leader for Caterpillar’s Manufacturing Technology Automation Research where he led development and deployment of automation tools to improve the performance and productivity of Caterpillar manufacturing facilities around the globe. Robinson also led manufacturing value stream design initiatives that led to the deployment of over 50 robotic/automated manufacturing systems around the world. Robinson holds a Master’s Degree from Ohio State University.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Developing High Mix Capability Through Open-Source Collaborative Initiatives | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Bob Rochelle

Bob Rochelle

Account Manager
Güdel Inc.

Bob Rochelle earned his Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Engineering from Virginia Tech and his Industrial Automation career spans over 30 years where he has held a variety of engineering, sales and management positions. He joined the Güdel team in 2016 as the Southeast Region’s Account Manager. Bob is a veteran speaker for industry groups, teaches engineering at the University and Community College level and is a freelance author for technical journals.   He is a regular contributor to educational committees for Industrial Automation Groups, has served on the RIA Board of Directors and is a past Standards Committee Chair for the 3A Sanitary Standards Institute. He enjoys sharing his experiences through speaking engagements like this one.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Getting Started with Industrial Robotics | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 10:15 AM


Jeremy Rockman

Jeremy Rockman

Product Marketing Manager
Mobile Industrial Robots

Jeremy Rockman is the head of product marketing for heavy payload autonomous mobile robots at MiR, and is focused on bringing the advantages of artificial intelligence to mobile robotics. He has over a decade of experience in bringing robotic products to market for semiconductor, warehousing, and industrial manufacturing. Jeremy has a BS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Massachusetts, and MBA in Technology Management from Boston University.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Cutting Through the Hype: An Overview on How to Evaluate AI Solutions for Industrial Applications | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Maren Roush

Maren Roush

Manager of Standards Development, Robotics
Association for Advancing Automation (A3)

Maren Roush [MAH-ren ROWSH] has more than two decades of experience with testing, inspection and certification organizations and standards development organizations (SDOs). She joined the Association for Advancing Automation (A3) as Standards Manager in January of 2022 after almost 26 years with NSF International. At NSF, she’d spent the last 8 years as manager of NSF’s Biosafety Cabinet Certification and Personnel Accreditation Programs. Maren has bachelors and masters degrees in Environmental Science from Wesleyan University and Eastern Michigan University.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Robotics Standards Update | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 11:15 AM


Daniela Rus
KEYNOTE SPEAKER

Daniela Rus

Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
MIT

Prof. Rus served as a member of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) and on the Defense Innovation Board. She is a senior visiting fellow at MITRE Corporation. She currently serves as a USA expert for Global Partnerships in AI, on the board of trustees of MBZUAI, and on the board of directors of Mass Robotics. She also served as Deputy Dean of Research in the Schwarzman College of Computing at MIT between 2019-2022.

Prof. Rus is a MacArthur Fellow, a fellow of ACM, IEEE, AAAI and AAAS, a member of the National Academy of Engineering, and of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She is the recipient of the Engelberger Award for robotics, the IEEE RAS Pioneer award, IEEE RAS Technical award, Mass TLC Innovation Catalyst Award, and the IJCAI John McCarthy Award. She earned her Ph.D. in Computer Science from Cornell University.

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Session(s):

Automate Conference
One Robot for Any Task | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 9:00 AM


Thomas Ryden

Thomas Ryden

Executive Director
MassRobotics

Thomas Ryden is the Executive Director of MassRobotics, a non-profit organization whose mission is to support the robotics community and help grow the next generation of robotics and connected device companies. MassRobotics runs the world’s largest robotics and IoT focused co-working space.

Prior to joining MassRobotics, Mr. Ryden was the founder and CEO/COO of VGo Communications where he helped launch the VGo telepresence robot. Previously, Mr. Ryden was Director of Sales & Marketing for iRobot Corporation, overseeing the development of some of iRobot’s most successful products. Mr. Ryden serves on the Tufts University Computer Science Advisory Board, the Worcester Polytechnic Institute’s Robotics Engineering Advisory Board, the Mechatronics & Robotics Engineering (MRE) Education Advisory Board, and the Robotics Technical Advisory Panel for ASME. He is also an advisor to a number of robotics start-ups. Mr. Ryden has a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Vermont and an MBA from Bentley University.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Mobile Robot Interoperability Standards | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:15 AM


William Junghoon Ryu

William Junghoon Ryu

CEO
Doosan Robotics

With over 20 years of experience across crucial business functions including finance, strategy, marketing and development, William (Junghoon) Ryu brings a wealth of expertise to the office of CEO at Doosan Robotics.

Before stepping into his role as CEO, Ryu served as VP of Corporate Strategy at Doosan Group. In that position, he had the opportunity to prove his leadership abilities and business acumen by ushering the company into the next era of innovation by incubating and accelerating new business fields including robotics, drones, and logistics solutions. In fact, Ryu has been with Doosan Group since 2007, starting as an in-house business consultant and transitioning to a Sales Lead for Doosan Infracore. He joined the Board of Directors at Doosan Robotics in July of 2021.

Through the years, Ryu has been heavily involved in an array of critical processes such as the post-merger integration of Doosan’s affiliates and overseeing all construction equipment market channels in China. He also worked across the subsidiaries on new product development and open entry while spurring efforts to achieve operational excellence. Therefore, he’s in a perfect position to enhance technological collaboration between Doosan Robotics and Doosan Group’s new business areas and initiate more customer-oriented businesses to expand collaborative robot applications and advance robotics technology.

Ryu graduated from Sogang University in Seoul with a degree in business administration and completed his MBA from the University of Michigan.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
The State of the Automation Industry - Leadership Roundtable | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 12:30 PM


Paul Ryznar

Paul Ryznar

Founder & CEO
LightGuide

Engineer, inventor, and entrepreneur Paul Ryznar created LightGuide and is the founder, president, and CEO of Wixom, MI-based LightGuide, Inc. Prior to LightGuide’s invention in 2005, he held senior management roles including Vice President of Operations positions at Detroit Diesel, Bosch, and Energy Conversion Devices—more than 30 years of manufacturing experience. LightGuide is the leading projected augmented reality (AR) software platform that transforms manual assembly and manufacturing processes for companies worldwide. Today, LightGuide works with a variety of leading automotive, aerospace, heavy equipment, agricultural equipment producers, and distribution companies, as well as in the healthcare field, to solve a growing variety of challenges. LightGuide, Inc. is headquartered in Wixom, Mich., with an EU office in the Czech Republic and an AP office in Suzhou, China. LightGuide is currently running in 36 countries worldwide.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Transform Your Workforce into a Competitive Advantage with Augmented Reality (AR) | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 11:15 AM


Aaron Saunders

Aaron Saunders

Chief Technology Officer
Boston Dynamics

Boston Dynamics creates some of the world’s most advanced mobile robots, including Spot, Stretch and Atlas. Drawing on inspiration from the animal kingdom, these robots move with remarkable agility, dexterity, perception, and intelligence. As Chief Technology Officer at Boston Dynamics, Aaron is responsible for leading key technology development activities and transforming research concepts into reality. With over 18 years of experience designing high performance electric and hydraulic mobile robots, Aaron leads teams that combine principles of dynamic control and balance with sophisticated mechanical designs, cutting-edge electronics, and software.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Humanoid Robotics: Is It Their Time? | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 12:00 PM


Andy Schaafs

Andy Schaafs

Senior Director of Development
REC Foundation

Andy Schaafs graduated from Texas A&M University in 2000 with a BS in Chemical Engineering, followed by 8 years in the oil and gas industry. During this time Andy held positions including process engineer, commercial analyst, program manager, and asset manager.

 

In 2008, Andy decided to follow his passion in mentoring by obtaining an alternative certification to teach STEM in high school. Through a series of fortunate circumstances, he found himself the engineering lead at a large high school in a large school district. For ten years Andy ran the PLTW engineering and robotics programs for the high school, until he was selected to run the engineering and robotics programs for the entire district. Through this administrative position he worked more and more with the Texas state legislature, NASA administrators, and the Robotics Education & Competition (REC) Foundation to affect legislation that brought more funding and recognition to after-school STEM programs, primarily robotics and workforce development.

 

Since 2019, Andy has worked for the REC Foundation as a Director of Regional Operations, Director of Team Engagement and Workforce Development, and, currently, as the Senior Director of Development. His current role at the REC Foundation is responsible for the advocacy, corporate relations, and grant stewardship of the organization.

Session(s):

Educator Day
PANEL DISCUSSION: Smart Manufacturing Workforce Development Best Practices | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Brendan Schulman

Brendan Schulman

VP of Policy & Government Relations
Boston Dynamics, Inc.

Brendan is the Vice President of Policy & Government Relations for Boston Dynamics, the world's leading developer of agile robots that autonomously navigate uneven terrain, stairs, and even doorways using legs and arms. In this role, he collaborates with policymakers and stakeholders on a wide range of policy and ethics issues relating to the integration of beneficial robots into society. Previously, Brendan was in charge of global public policy for DJI, the world's leading manufacturer of commercial drones. A technology advocate, thought-leader, and champion of pragmatic solutions to the concerns that are raised by emerging technologies, Brendan has served on federal and state policy advisory committees, testified in the U.S. Congress and the U.K. House of Commons, speaks frequently, and is often quoted in the media on technology law and policy.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Advocacy and the Future of Robotics and Automation: How A3 is Working with Industry and Government Leaders To Advance U.S. Leadership | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 3:45 PM


Stephen Se

Stephen Se

Senior Engineering Manager, Depth Sensing
Teledyne FLIR - Machine Vision

Stephen Se is the Senior Engineering Manager at Teledyne FLIR Machine Vision with over 20 years of experience in computer vision, video/image processing, deep learning, 3D modeling, mobile robotics, airborne surveillance, etc. He completed a B.Eng. degree in Computing at Imperial College London and a Ph.D. degree in Computer Vision and Robotics at University of Oxford.  He then worked as a post-doctoral researcher at University of British Columbia on vision-based mobile robot localization. Subsequently, he led computer vision R&D projects for defense, mining, and terrestrial applications at MDA Corporation.  He is a senior member of IEEE and a professional engineer, with over 40 technical publications.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Stereo Imaging Use Cases and Challenges for Warehouse Robotic Applications | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 3:30 PM


Michael Sharpe

Michael Sharpe

Executive Director - Materials Joining Sales
FANUC America Corporation

Mike Sharpe is the Executive Director of Sales for Materials Joining at FANUC America, responsible for sales and business development laser, arc, and adhesive bonding market.  A 36-year veteran of FANUC, Sharpe has served in a variety of positions within the company and holds patents in robotics-related applications.  Sharpe is a member of the American Welding Society, Laser Institute of America, sits on the steering committee for ALAW, and actively supports the Society of Manufacturing Engineers.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
COBOTs Make Fiber Laser Welding Easy | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Nolan Shelton

Nolan Shelton

Cobot Sales Specialist
ABB Inc.

After graduating with a degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Dayton, Nolan joined ABB as part of the early talent program which ultimately led to his current position as Cobot Sales Specialist.

Having responsibility for collaborative robot sales in the US; he provides support, resources, and strategies to the organization relating to ABB's collaborative portfolio. He spends a great deal of time taking the pulse of the collaborative robot market, and can be found networking with peers at industry events, picking the brains of cobot application engineers, and visiting customers to gain a deeper understanding of the needs, drivers, and trends that are behind the rising demand for collaborative robots.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Collaborative Robotics: Finding Your Perfect Cobot Application | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 3:30 PM


Alex Shikany

Alex Shikany

Vice President - Membership & Market Intelligence
Association for Advancing Automation (A3)

Alex Shikany is the Vice President of Membership & Market Intelligence at the Association for Advancing Automation (A3). In his position, he researches statistics and trends for global automation markets. Alex is a member of A3’s leadership team, leads membership and market intelligence efforts for the association, and is a frequent speaker at industry events around the world. He earned his bachelor’s degree and MBA from Michigan State University, where he majored in Marketing and Finance. Alex joined A3 in 2012 and has over a decade of experience in marketing, brand strategy, and market research in the automation industry.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
The Automation Market: The Statistics & Trends You Should Be Watching | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 1:15 PM


Stuart Singer

Stuart Singer

CEO
Schneider Optics, Inc.

Stuart Singer is a distinguished figure in the field of optical engineering and management, currently serving as the Chief Executive Officer of Schneider Optics, Inc. With a remarkable career spanning over 45 years, Stuart brings a wealth of expertise in optical engineering, lens design, and technical sales across diverse industries.

 

Prior to his current role, Stuart held key positions at Schneider Optics, including Senior Vice President & CTO, where he spearheaded technological innovation and strategic direction for seven years. Before joining Schneider Optics, Stuart served as the Optical Engineering Manager at Loral Fairchild Systems (formerly Fairchild Reconnaissance and Surveillance Systems) for 14 years, showcasing his adeptness in managing complex optical projects.

 

Stuart's contributions extend beyond corporate roles, as he also served as the Senior Technical Director of Ruda Cardinal, Inc., where he played a pivotal role in designing intricate optical systems. As a Senior Member of the Optical Engineering Society - SPIE, Stuart has actively contributed to the advancement of optical technology and shared his expertise through numerous technical papers and lectures.

 

Stuart's achievements in the field have been recognized with prestigious awards, including a National Emmy Award in 2012 for his pivotal role in developing an IRND Filter for Digital Motion Picture Cameras, highlighting his significant impact on the motion picture and television industries. His dedication to advancing optical engineering and his extensive experience make him a respected leader in the field.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Advanced Optics for Vision | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Nicholas Sischka

Nicholas Sischka

Director, Imaging
Edmund Optics

Nick Sischka is the Director of Imaging at Edmund Optics, specializing in optics for machine vision and robotics. In addition to teaching the basic optics course for the A3's Certified Vision Professional certification, he is the chair of the NextGen committee, which strives to get young people interested in factory automation. He has a bachelor's degree in Optical Sciences and Engineering from the University of Arizona.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Beginning Optics for Machine Vision | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Michael Skocik

Michael Skocik

Senior Programs Manager
ARM Institute

Michael Skocik is a Senior Programs Manager for the Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing (ARM) Institute, a DoD-funded national manufacturing innovation institute. Michael is responsible for managing a multi-million-dollar portfolio of ARM’s Technology Development projects and supporting the process by which they are selected. Through this work, Michael helps to fulfill ARM’s mission of increasing U.S. global competitiveness by accelerating innovative technologies and workforce programs that make robots more accessible to U.S. manufacturers.

Michael has over 20 years of manufacturing experience and has served in roles ranging in quality, product management, research & development, program management, and engineering. Recently, Michael has led the development of the ARM Institute’s Flexible Roadmap Process and served as lead designer and facilitator for workshops on Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) as well as Multi-Robot Multi-Human Collaboration. Michael also manages the National AI Data Foundry project focused on the development of AI/ML tools, datasets and strategies to accelerate the adoption of robotics for manufacture applications.

Prior to joining ARM, Michael was employed by Westinghouse Electric Company in the roles of Marketing Development and Product Management where he managed aftermarket and engineered products for the Global Commercial Nuclear Sector.

Michael is a graduate of West Virginia University with a Bachelor of Science degree in the field of Chemical Engineering.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
From Funding to Impact: How ARM Institute Projects Strengthen U.S. Manufacturing | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 1:30 PM


Jason Smith

Jason Smith

Principal Engineer - Commercial Robotics
UL Solutions

Jason is currently the Principal Engineer for Robots and Control Systems at UL Solutions, based in Northbrook, IL USA. Jason has been with UL Solutions for 18 years, during which time he also previously served as UL’s Principal Engineer for Functional Safety. Jason has worked extensively in the development of and staff training in service robot safety standards such as UL 3300 and ISO 13482, and functional safety standards such as UL 991, UL 1998, CSA C22.2 No. 0.8, IEC/UL 60730-1, and ISO 13849. Jason is a graduate of Northern Illinois University (BSEE) and has over 23 years of experience working with embedded systems and software.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Leveraging UL Robotics Standards Testing to Meet Your Verification & Validation | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 10:15 AM


Andrew Spiece

Andrew Spiece

Computer Science Teacher
Edlearn

Discover Andrew Spiece, a visionary Computer Science teacher at Grand Blanc High School, who is revolutionizing technology education by harnessing the power of Minecraft Education in the classroom. As the founder of edlrn.io, Andrew has pioneered an engaging curriculum for middle school students, collaborating with Chicago Public Schools to integrate interactive learning platforms that captivate young minds. His dedication extends to high school education, where he utilizes Minecraft Education to transform traditional computer science concepts into immersive and interactive experiences, enabling students to explore, create, and solve problems in a virtual environment.

Andrew's rich educational background, with a Master of Education in Instructional Technology from Wayne State University and a Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics from the University of Michigan - Flint, underpins his innovative teaching methods. Certified in Mathematics and Computer Science, he is a trailblazer in integrating gaming into education, engaging students in a way that encourages creativity, collaboration, and critical thinking.

His role in leading the Truck Town Thunder Robotics program demonstrates his commitment to interactive and participatory learning, principles that are echoed in his use of Minecraft Education. This approach not only has made him a beloved figure among his students but also earned him accolades such as the Woodie Flowers Finalist Award, recognizing his outstanding mentorship and educational innovation.

For attendees at the Automate conference, Andrew Spiece embodies the future of education—a realm where technology and play converge to unlock unprecedented learning opportunities. His work exemplifies how educators can leverage popular gaming platforms to foster a deeper understanding of computer science principles, making him a beacon of inspiration for integrating Minecraft Education into high school classrooms.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Building Future Innovators: Transforming Computer Science Education with Minecraft | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 11:45 AM


Denise Stafford

Denise Stafford

Business Development Manager
KUKA Robotics

Denise is fascinated by the “human element” in robotics and believes listening to skilled workers is the key to success. Among her favorite quotes is one by Ernest Hemmingway, “When people talk, listen completely. Most people never listen.”   
In her role as Business Development Manager for KUKA Robotics, Ms. Stafford works with local sales and account management to provide customers in North America with innovative automation solutions using human-robot collaboration and mobile robotics. She offers valuable insight for both KUKA and their customers on a wide range of topics, such as Industry 4.0, mobility, and human-robot collaboration.


A KUKA employee since 2008, her role with the company has evolved over time to include a variety of key positions, including head of Service Robotics Research for KUKA Laboratories and as a Key Account Manager. Prior to KUKA, Ms. Stafford was the patent coordinator for AKsys GmbH, where she set up the company’s patent department, with a focus on ensuring company processes and formulas were legally compliant. She also served as a patent engineer for REINZ-Dichtungs-GmbH.


Ms. Stafford obtained a Master of Science degree in Business Administration and Economics from the University of Hagen after completing her graduate studies In Industrial Engineering at the Ulm University of Applied Sciences.  She enjoys exploring her new home, the City of Detroit, connecting with her neighbors, traveling and golfing with her husband.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Worker-Centric Mobile Robot Integration: Unlocking Manufacturing Excellence | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 2:15 PM


Joel Stenson

Joel Stenson

Senior Vice President of Global Operations Technology
UPS

Joel is the Senior Vice President of Global Operations Technology at UPS. Joel’s team plays a pivotal role in integrating UPS’s IT and engineering team to strategically focus on operations, customer solutions and enterprise needs. Prior to his current role, Joel was the Global President of UPS Buildings and Systems Engineering (BaSE). He began his UPS career in 1994, working in the Buildings and Systems Engineering (BaSE) function, while attending college. Joel has held a variety of roles of increasing responsibility including intern, programmer, project manager, facilities manager, and automation vice president.

Joel’s team holds global responsibility for research and development, engineering design, contracts and standards, facility and system construction, maintenance and technical support, regulatory compliance, and the facility safety program with UPS’ global network of data centers and operational facilities, across all business units.

Joel currently serves on the boards of the Georgia Institute of Technology’s College of Electrical and Computer Engineering, the National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering (NACME), and the Mutual Alliance Restoring Community Hope (MARCH) Foundation.

He is a licensed Professional Engineer and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Logistics & Warehousing: What’s Next for the Industry & Automation | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 2:30 PM


Paul Stephens

Paul Stephens

Manufacturing Transformation Lead
Ford Motor Company

Paul Stephens is a next-generation manufacturing leader, bringing outside-the-box thinking and innovation to the automotive industry. Paul was appointed Manufacturing Transformation Lead for Ford Motor Company in April 2023, responsible for delivering best-in-world strategies to accelerate Ford's transition to a fully electric portfolio. With responsibilities ranging from advanced concept development through in-plant execution, Paul is fundamentally redefining vehicle assembly operations to generate long-term value for customers, employees, and shareholders.

Paul brings a fresh approach to a traditional industry, challenging the status quo and driving next-level growth in automation, process strategy, labor relations, investment optimization, and industry partnerships. Additionally, Paul has responsibilities and experience in cultivating relationships with global partners, leading negotiation delegations in the European and Asian markets.

Prior to his current assignment, he held positions in Industrial Engineering, Final Assembly, Vehicle Launch, and Technology Development.

Paul graduated from Kettering University with a degree in Mechanical Engineering, and has an MBA from Carnegie Mellon University - Tepper School of Business.

Paul holds multiple US and global patents, and is a frequent speaker at international automotive and manufacturing conferences. Outside his professional schedule, Paul enjoys exploring new cultures through travel, bringing global perspective to his Michigan home.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Transforming EV Manufacturing with Advanced Automation | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 11:15 AM


Steve Strong

Steve Strong

CEO
Concept Systems,Inc.

Steve Strong is the CEO of Concept Systems Inc., an automation systems integrator with more than 24 years of experience in the industry.  With Steve at the helm, Concept delivers turnkey automation solutions and services to manufacturers across the globe.  His team prides itself on its industry knowledge, deep technical expertise, a methodology that delivers with quality and speed, and a relentless commitment to delivering value to our partners.

Steve spent many years in the aerospace industry before joining Concept Systems in 2021.  His technical background is centered in manufacturing process development where he delivered solutions for production system PLM and MES software, developed automated robotic path planning systems, and managed NC programming system development for commercial airplane programs. Later he led enterprise strategy and deployment for NC and robotic programming for Boeing Commercial Airplanes.  His final role before joining Concept Systems was leading the organization responsible for the Digital Factory as part of Boeing Product Development future airplane programs.

Steve resides in the Seattle, WA area with his wife and three children.  He’s an active member of the local community, coaching flag football, golfing, and thinking deep thoughts on his tractor.  He and his family take every opportunity to advocate for Type 1 Diabetes research and outreach in support of his daughter Imogen who was diagnosed with T1D in 2020.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Exploring Modularity in Robotics Work Cell Design | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Lindsey Sullivan

Lindsey Sullivan

Technical Marketing Manager
CCS America

Lindsey Sullivan has spent 8 years as an engineer evaluating machine vision applications in every industry. She started as a Sales Engineer at Keyence before moving to an Application Engineer at CCS America, Inc., a machine vision lighting company. In her current role as Technical Marketing Manager, she is sharing her expertise so that industrial automation companies can design high-accuracy systems without troubleshooting lighting challenges after machines are built.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Avoiding the Major Pitfalls of Machine Vision Lighting | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Michael Suppa

Michael Suppa

CEO
Roboception GmbH

Dr. Michael Suppa is the co-founder and CEO of Roboception GmbH, a Munich-based start-up company providing comprehensive 3D perception solutions for robotic applications. Michael received his Master’s Degree (Dipl.-Ing.) in Electrical Engineering (2000) and his Doctoral Degree (Dr.-Ing.) in Mechanical Engineering (2007) from the University of Hannover, Germany. From 2000 until 2009, he was employed as a project manager and researcher at the Institute of Robotics and Mechatronics of the German Aerospace Center (DLR). In 2009, he was appointed Head of the Perception and Cognition Department at the same institute, and in 2014 he was additionally named Deputy Institute Director. In 2015, Michael co-founded Roboception, a DLR spin-off company. Roboception has since successfully introduced the innovative 3D stereo sensor ‘rc_visard’ along with an associated software suite ‘rc_reason’, enabling robotic users across a variety of domains to equip their robots with reliable perception capabilities. Under his leadership, the achievements of Roboception and its rc_visard have been recognized by a number of awards, including the iF (2017) and Red Dot (2019) Design Awards, the EU Robotics Technology Transfer Award (2018) and the Bavarian Innovation Award (2018). Michael is consulting robotic start-ups on sharpening business ideas, finding strategic partners and acquiring capital. He has been the PI in several European and national projects and was nominated for and received several best paper awards. Since 2020, he is a honorary professor for robotics, cognition and informatics at the University of Bremen.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
How to Automate Flexibly Using A Scalable AI-based 3D Vision Platform: Best Practices and Technology Insights | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 11:15 AM


German Suvorov

German Suvorov

AI Solutions Architect - Business Development, AI Ecosystem
Siemens

German trained as an aerospace engineer and earned his Ph.D. in 2005, studying the overlap of data science and industrial automation. He's spent 20 years in roles ranging from engineering to business management, in fields like automotive manufacturing, supply chain management, and advanced materials. Over the past five years, he's been building AI solutions for industrial use, mainly with Siemens and NVIDIA ecosystems.

Currently at Siemens, German's focus is on developing new business opportunities by creating and integrating AI-based industrial automation solutions.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Transforming Manufacturing with AI: From Development and Deployment to Optimization | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 11:15 AM


Larry Sweet

Larry Sweet

Director, Engineering
ARM Institute

Larry Sweet is a widely recognized robotics and automation expert, working in both commercial organizations and academia. He brings experience in bringing emerging technologies into production by increasing their Technology Readiness Level, concurrent with improvements in factory floor processes and workforce skills. Previously he was the Director, Worldwide Robotics Deployment at Amazon Robotics, leading technology transition and system integration for all internally developed automation into Amazon’s global network. Larry also held senior manufacturing and technology roles at Symbotic, the Frito-Lay, United Technologies, ABB, Fanuc, and GE. Industry recognition includes 32 patents, the Edison and IR-100 Awards, and the Manufacturing Leadership Council Outstanding Achiever Award for Supply Chain Excellence. Larry received his Ph.D. and M.S. degrees from MIT, and a B.S from the University of California, Berkeley. He was a tenured faculty member at Princeton University.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Strategies for Making Advanced Robotic Manufacturing Technology Accessible to System Integrators and End Users | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 2:30 PM


Tucker Sweet

Tucker Sweet

Automation Application Engineer
SCHUNK

Tucker has supported the automation industry for over 10 years with a focus in automation tool changing equipment and automated material removal. Tucker has extensive experience in concepting material removal automation, selecting tools and consumables, and validating the concept with application testing. Tucker is known for excellent automation support through gaining a deep understanding of customer requirements and developing a robust solution to bring confidence to the application.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Optimizing Automated Material Removal: Safe, Effective, Repeatable | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 11:15 AM


Robert Tait

Robert Tait

Partner
Optical Metrology Solutions

Robert Tait started in industrial and scientific imaging before computer vision was a thing and was an early adopter on the machine vision technology curve.  Focusing on industrial / government research and development while developing applications and technology, he has maintained a fast and fun career over the last 45 years in the field..  His projects, spanning several countries, have taken him to the bottom of a training nuclear reactor, to the top of wind towers, with an excessive range of activities in-between. After most recently working 14 years at General Electric Global Research, he left to become a partner in Optical Metrology Solutions LLC, in 2018, and has been busy supporting a range of clients, as well as working on improved optical metrology solutions for industry.  One of his favorite jobs is to mentor beginning machine vision people and help them become proficient in the craft. 

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Advanced Vision System Integration | Friday, May 10, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Frantisek Takac

Frantisek Takac

Strategic Partners Manager
Photoneo s. r. o.

Frantisek Takac is a robotics, 3D vision, and automation enthusiast with 15 years of experience in the industry. With a passion for business development, sales, and marketing, he is currently taking care of strategic accounts and robotic partners of the company Photoneo. Frantisek is an ambassador of Photoneo's novel technology for 3D scanning in rapid motion - parallel structured light, which enables bringing innovative and reliable 3D vision technology solutions to the market, enabling powerful and fast machine learning and improving the performance and efficiency of various industries including robotics, warehouse and factory automation.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Parallel Structured Light - High Accuracy 3D Sensing for Automation in Motion | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 2:15 PM


Wendy Tan White
KEYNOTE SPEAKER

Wendy Tan White

CEO of Intrinsic,
an Alphabet company

Wendy Tan White is the Chief Executive Officer of Intrinsic, which aims to unlock the creative and economic potential of industrial robotics for businesses, entrepreneurs and developers by making industrial robots easier to use and train. Intrinsic became an Alphabet “Other Bet” in July 2021.

Before becoming CEO at Intrinsic, Wendy was a Vice President at X, the moonshot factory, where she coached a variety of teams and leaders on how to chart their path to the moon, including sustainability projects Mineral and Tidal. Before joining X, she was a partner at BGF Ventures, a £2.5bn growth capital fund, and General Partner at Entrepreneur First, a global technology talent investor in AI, robotics and biotech. Early in her career, Wendy was CEO and co-founder of Moonfruit, the world’s first Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) website builder platform. She also helped launch Zopa.com, the first European peer-to-peer lending site, and Egg.com, the UK's first internet bank.

Wendy holds a bachelor of engineering in computer science from Imperial College, a masters in material futures design from Central Saint Martins, and an honorary doctorate from Salford University. In 2016, Queen Elizabeth II awarded Wendy an MBE for her services to technology and business.

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Session(s):

Automate Conference
Realizing the Value of AI in Industrial Automation | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 9:00 AM


Daniel Theobald

Daniel Theobald

Founder and Chief Innovation Officer
Vecna Robotics

Daniel Theobald is the Chief Innovation Officer and founder of Vecna Robotics, flexible, intelligent material handling automation company. Daniel has decades of experience leading research scientists and teams of engineers in developing cutting-edge technology. He has 67 issued patents and more than 30 patents pending. 

Daniel has been at the forefront of robotics for more than 20 years, working closely with DARPA, DOD, NASA, NIH, USDA, and many others to advance the use of robots and AI software to improve supply chain automation. In addition to founding Vecna Robotics, Daniel also co-founded MassRobotics, a non-profit dedicated to the global advancement of the robotics industry. Daniel is dedicated to the idea that technology can be used to empower people worldwide to live more fulfilling lives. 

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Mobile Robot Interoperability Standards | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:15 AM


Paul Thomas

Paul Thomas

Director of Machine Vision and Applied AI in Global Engineering
P&G

Paul Thomas, PE is the Director of Machine Vision and Applied AI in Global Engineering for Procter & Gamble. He has over 20 years of industrial controls experience as a developer, OEM and End User. Paul is a licensed Professional Engineer in Ohio and Michigan. Paul is also the owner of the newly created Corporate Machine Vision and Applied AI Lab. His focus is to develop and identify innovative approaches for vision applications for robotics, quality inspections and product identification throughout P&G. Some of his recent accomplishments include multiple patents for the use of deep learning in inspection systems, contributing to an ANSI standard for safety of AI in machinery applications and the end-to-end development and deployment of a high-speed, edge-based deep learning solution.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
ChatGPT, Simulation & Beyond: How AI Advances Are Changing What’s Possible | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 12:30 PM


Michka Tosan

Michka Tosan

Account Manager - Medical Robotics
KUKA Robotics

Michka Tosan is an Account Manager for Medical Robotics at KUKA Robotics Corporation. Over the past 7 years, Michka has supported key medical device manufacturers through their application development, fundraising rounds, FDA submissions, and product releases. With half a decade of experience in engineering and application development, Michka continues to support medical device manufacturing on the commercial side helping to ensure customer product development and market releases are well supported. His primary responsibilities include promoting robotic solutions for robotically assisted surgical devices and other medical systems. Michka is dedicated to supporting medical applications and customers so that patients receive the best care possible and medical device manufacturers are adequately equipped to provide patients with the best care possible.

Session(s):

Educator Day
LUNCHEON PANEL DISCUSSION: Preparing our Workforce for Smart Manufacturing Careers | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 11:45 AM


Chris Tourney

Chris Tourney

Innovation Engineer
Mayo Clinic

Chris Tourney is a dynamic Health System Engineer at Mayo Clinic, with a steadfast commitment to pioneering innovation in healthcare. Currently, he is at the forefront of robotics and automation initiatives across both the Rochester and Florida campuses, blazing a trail toward the future of Autonomous Mobile Robotics in healthcare.

Chris excels in fostering cross-functional collaboration, uniting diverse teams to devise forward-thinking solutions that promise to revolutionize patient care. His recent endeavors have been dedicated to the early integration of AMR (Autonomous Mobile Robotics) technology. 
His journey with Mayo Clinic started in 2011 when he assumed the role of Process Improvement Manager for health system sites, dedicated to elevating quality and patient outcomes. Chris's academic accolades include an MBA from Western Governors University, complemented by dual bachelor's degrees in Industrial Engineering and Supply Chain Management from Purdue University.

Before becoming a part of the Mayo Clinic team, Chris worked as a manager in supply chain at IU Health in Indianapolis. In every role, Chris has brought his distinct engineering perspective to the table, effectively turning visionary concepts into tangible, transformative solutions. With a dedication to advancing healthcare through innovation, Chris continues to be a driving force in the healthcare AMR field.


Chelle Travis

Chelle Travis

Executive Director
SkillsUSA

Chelle Travis is the executive director of SkillsUSA, a national organization of nearly 400,000 teachers and students operating within the framework of career and technical education (CTE). Travis was appointed in 2019 and leads a staff of 35 that manages a federation of 52 state and territorial SkillsUSA associations, one of which (Tennessee) Travis formerly led as its director. The work she's accomplished in two decades of advancing the cause of career and technical education makes Travis a perfect fit to help SkillsUSA, America’s proud champion of the skilled trades, continue to achieve its mission: to empower students to become skilled professionals, career-ready leaders and responsible community members.

Travis' professional experience is rooted in a wide variety of academic settings, from secondary institutions to universities to technical and community colleges. Prior to becoming executive director of SkillsUSA, she served as the senior director of workforce and economic development at the Tennessee Higher Education Commission (THEC), where she built valuable partnerships with employers, workforce agencies and postsecondary institutions. Prior to her work at THEC, Travis served as associate vice chancellor for students for the Tennessee Board of Regents College System. There, she provided leadership in promoting student initiatives across 40 technical and community colleges.

Travis has collaborated with every category of CTE stakeholder to design curricula, develop programs, draft legislation and more. The ultimate goal of these and current efforts is the same: to help students realize their full personal and professional potential while elevating the value of CTE to the forefront of educational discourse.

Travis holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration and finance, and a master’s degree in business administration, from Middle Tennessee State University. She is a doctoral student at Tennessee State University.

Session(s):

Educator Day
PANEL DISCUSSION: Smart Manufacturing Workforce Development Best Practices | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Per Treven

Per Treven

Director Business Development, Manufacturing
Ericsson

Per Treven brings over 30 years of experience within telecom. Per's domains of expertise are in charging, O&M, managed services, IoT and private networks solutions. For the last couple of years, he has worked with business development and sales to enable private wireless solutions for mining companies. Per's current focus is on assisting enterprises on utilizing the capabilities of 5G for manufacturing.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Private Cellular Networks: Lessons from Early Adopters in Manufacturing | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 11:30 AM


Marc Trusio

Marc Trusio

Business Development Director, Americas for Senseye Predictive Maintenance
Siemens

Marc Trusio is a seasoned professional with a wealth of experience in business development and sales across diverse industries. Currently serving as the Business Development Director, Americas for Senseye Predictive Maintenance at Siemens, Marc plays a pivotal role in driving growth and strategic initiatives in the region.

With a career spanning over two decades, Marc has held key positions including US Sales Director at Senseye, Strategic Account Manager at VIZIYA Corp, and Director of Strategic Accounts at Covente, Inc. His expertise extends to enterprise software sales, big data analytics, and strategic partnerships. Marc's career journey reflects his dedication to driving business growth and fostering valuable client relationships.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Unlocking Manufacturing Excellence: The Power of Predictive Maintenance Technology | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 3:15 PM


Jenny Tuertscher

Jenny Tuertscher

Vice President Technical Safety
Fortress Safety

Jenny designed machinery for use globally for over 20 years, has been a TÜV Rheinland Functional Safety Engineer for 6 years, and has participated on ISO and ANSI machinery standards development committees for 6 years.  While working at Procter & Gamble, Jenny enhanced the training and qualification program internal to the company by creating and providing material on using the machinery safety standards, U.S. and global, to evaluate machine designs for proper risk reduction implementation.  She currently teaches B11 LMSSTM and answers questions related to machinery safety, LOTO, and AMEC for Fortress Safety customers.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Risk Reduction Is Not Always About Changing Your Control System | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Nathan Turner

Nathan Turner

President
Fastems LLC

With more than 30 years of automation experience in various R&D and business development positions, Nathan Turner is the President of Fastems LLC, leading growth and expansion in North, Central, and South Americas. He oversees Fastems’ sales, engineering, and support teams to help metalworking manufacturers improve their business through automation technologies. Mr. Turner holds a BSME degree in Mechanical Engineering at Northwestern University. Throughout his career he has continued to develop and enhance his knowledge with focused courses in product management, distribution, sales, marketing, and finance.


Eric Updike

Eric Updike

Regional Sales Manager
Dobot USA

Eric Updike is a seasoned professional in the field of Robotics and Industrial Automation, bringing over two decades of experience and speaking on robotics as Regional Sales Manager with Dobot Robotics. With a deep understanding of market trends and a knack for strategic planning, Eric has played a pivotal role in driving innovation and growth within the industry. Known for his expertise in fostering a consultant sales approach with clients and implementing effective business strategies, he continues to make significant contributions to the advancement of robotics and industrial automation technologies.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
Unlocking Enhanced Workplace Safety with Dobot Safeskin | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 4:30 PM


Patrick Varley

Patrick Varley

Product Marketing Manager (Robot)
Mitsubishi Electric Automation Inc

Patrick is an automation industry veteran with over 35 years of automation experience including systems integration, robot & vision system suppliers and distribution. In his role as Product Marketing Manager for Mechatronics / Robotics at Mitsubishi Electric Automation, he is driven by the challenge of solving customers’ needs through innovative and durable automation solutions.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
How Their First Robot Purchase Enabled A 70-Year-Old Company with 11 Facilities on 3 Continents to Profitably Expand Their Domestic Manufacturing | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 2:30 PM

Automate Innovation Stage
Introducing RV-12CRL - The Latest High Performance/Low Cost Robot in Mitsubishi Electric's RV-CRL Series | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 2:15 PM


Massimiliano Versace

Massimiliano Versace

CEO and Co-Founder
Neurala

Dr. Massimiliano Versace is the CEO and co-founder of Neurala. With decades of experience and research in AI and deep learning techniques, Dr. Versace is now focused on making AI more applicable and useful in real-world applications, specifically in the manufacturing and industrial industry. Prior to co-founding Neurala, Dr. Versace co-founded the Boston University Neuromorphics Lab, and worked with government organizations such as DARPA and NASA to develop AI with the ability to learn in real-time, at the edge, and free of traditional constraints of computational hardware.

Dr. Versace has spoken at numerous events, including a keynote at Mobile World Congress Drone Summit, TEDx, NASA, the Pentagon, MIT Tech Review’s Future Compute and IMA Sensing Days. His work has been featured in Forbes, CNN, Fortune, MSNBC, the Associated Press, TechCrunch, VentureBeat, and more.

He holds several patents and two PhDs: Cognitive and Neural Systems, Boston University; Experimental Psychology, University of Trieste, Italy.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Living at the Edge: The Era of AI, Everywhere in the Production Floor | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 10:15 AM


Jon Veschio

Jon Veschio

VP North American Sales
Lucas Systems

Jon Veschio is the Vice President, North American Sales at Lucas Systems, leading a team of business development executives and solutions consultants in empowering new and current clients to meet the ever-changing demands of their customers by setting new standards for employee productivity/accuracy and operational efficiency in the warehouse and distribution sector.

He is passionate about partnering with entrepreneurs, business owners, and executives to create software solutions that help them bring innovations to the market quickly and confidently. His experience as a client and champion of innovation has positioned him to understand the risks, budgetary challenges and time constraints that come with unique software projects.

Jon’s areas of expertise include software and product development, UX strategy, product innovation, enterprise software solutions, robotics, SaaS applications, wearables, API authoring and design research.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
Supercharge DC Operational Gains with AI Software | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 12:00 PM


Alex von Eckartsberg

Alex von Eckartsberg

Program Manager
GridRaster, Inc.

Alex has been an Army Intelligence Officer in the Army Reserve and National Guard for over 13 years. He has held positions as a civilian contractor across the intelligence community (IC) ranging from data analytics to operational analyst for unmanned aircraft systems.

While serving on active duty at the Pentagon, Alex was tasked with helping lead the integration of artificial intelligence and machine learning (AI/ML) directly into the hands of the warfighter with a focus on full motion video (FMV) data collection, storage, and processing to produce the best quality data for AI model training.

As a Program Manager for GridRaster (GR), he manages the augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) portfolio across the company with customers like the U.S. Air Force, U.S. Space Force, and the U.S. Army. Use cases for the cloud-based extended reality (XR) platform include manufacturing and sustainment, end-user training, and maintenance. One of the largest projects is serving the U.S. Air Force entitled, “Mixed Reality Cloud Platform for Robotics”, provides a functional, agile, modular, scalable mixed reality (MR) technology stack for robotic workspace setup, robotic intent and process visualization, analysis of spatial defect capture data as well as other sensor data aligned with the correct parts of the objects so the operator can work in tandem with the robot and save money and time.


Ben Wald

Ben Wald

Founder
Very

Biography coming soon.


Jason Walker

Jason Walker

VP, Market Development
Locus Robotics

Before joining Locus Robotics, Walker co-founded Waypoint Robotics, which designs and manufactures easy-to-use, industrial-strength, omnidirectional autonomous mobile robots (AMRs). Locus acquired Waypoint in 2021.

Prior to founding Waypoint, Walker co-founded CyPhy Works, where he served as lead roboticist and director of operations while working on contacts for DARPA, NIST, and the National Science Foundation. He helped grow CyPhy Works into a leading tethered drone supplier in North America.

Prior to CyPhy Works, Walker was the quality and testing manager for the Roomba vacuuming robot at iRobot. He received a BSEE with a concentration in robotics and control systems from Kansas State University.


Masahito Watanabe

Masahito Watanabe

Chairman
Japan Industrial Imaging Association

Biography coming.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Updates on Machine Vision Standards | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 3:30 PM


Ron Watkins

Ron Watkins

Worldwide DELMIA Industry Process Expert – HT/A&D
Dassault Systemes

Over 25 years specialized in the MES/MOM and ERP space in the areas of strategic planning, evaluation, deployment, and continuous improve of their enterprise manufacturing solutions. Over 11 years at Dassault Systemes helping customers realize their strategic vision of deploying Virtual Twin Experience-based manufacturing solutions.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Private Cellular Networks: Lessons from Early Adopters in Manufacturing | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 11:30 AM


John Wen

John Wen

Professor and Head, Electrical, Computer, & Systems Engineering
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

John Wen is the Russell Sage Professor in Engineering and Head of Electrical, Computer, and Systems Engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He has been an active researcher in control, robotics, and automation for over four decades. His recognitions include IEEE Fellow in since 2001, the 2013 IEEE Control Systems Society Transition to Practice Award, Oversea Assessor for the Chinese Academy of Sciences 2004-2009, and Senior Visiting Scientist of the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science in 1997. He was with Fisher Controls 1981-1983, Jet Propulsion Laboratory 1985-1988, and RPI since 1988. He served as Head of Industrial and Systems Engineering 2013-2018 and Director of the Center for Automation Technologies and Systems (CATS) 2005-2013. His research is in the area of control theory and applications including robotics, material processing, thermal management, and circadian rhythm and sleep regulation. His work has been funded by federal agencies, e.g., NSF, ONR, ARO, NASA, NIST, New York State, consortia, and industry.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Multi-Robot Coordinated Motion | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 11:00 AM


Perry C. West

Perry C. West

President
Automated Vision Systems, Inc.

Perry C. West is the president of Automated Vision Systems, Inc., a leading consulting firm in the field of machine vision.  He has over 43 years of experience in machine vision.  This experience includes system design and development, software development of both general purpose and application specific software packages, optical engineering for both lighting and imaging, camera and interface design, education and training, manufacturing management, and engineering management.  He received his BSEE from the University of California at Berkeley, is a past President of the Machine Vision Association of SME, received the MVA/SME Chairman’s Award for 1990, and received the Automated Imaging Association’s annual Achievement Award for 2003.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
High-Speed, Real-Time Machine Vision | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 3:30 PM
Vision System Design | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Matthew Wicks

Matthew Wicks

Vice President, General Manager
Zebra Technologies

Matt serves as Vice President and General Manager of Zebra Technologies’ Robotics Automation division. In his role, he is fully responsible for Zebra’s Robotics Automation business and driving the company's innovative mobile robotics software and solutions. Matt is a seasoned veteran in the automation, robotics, and material handling industries, with over 28 years of experience in the field. With a wealth of expertise in robotics, controls, and software integration of warehousing, fulfillment, manufacturing, and distribution systems, he has been instrumental in developing advanced robotic solutions that push the boundaries of what's possible. Matt is widely recognized as a thought leader in the robotics industry, having patented several key technologies and regularly speaking at industry events.

Matt’s commitment to excellence is reflected in his educational background, holding a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from the University of Missouri - Rolla (Missouri S&T) and being a registered Professional Engineer in the state of Missouri. His contributions to the industry have also earned him a seat on the Association for Advancing Automation (A3) Board of Directors and Robotics Strategy Board. Matt was also a past Chairman of the Robotics Industry Association (RIA) Board of Directors.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
Empowering Your Workforce: Integration of Wearables and AMRs to Increase Picking Productivity | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 2:15 PM

Automate Show Theater
Logistics & Warehousing: What’s Next for the Industry & Automation | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 2:30 PM


Ingo Wiedenhues

Ingo Wiedenhues

Business Development Manager, Integrated Vision Solutions
Atlas Copco, IAS

With more than 20 years experience, Ingo Wiedenhues is responsible for working with customers to understand challenges and develop new and innovative solutions to deliver Machine Vision capabilities to their Assembly and Manufacturing. Ingo works closely with our R&D Teams, Product Specialists and supporting partners serving as the expert lead for all IVS opportunities at Atlas Copco. Ingo is a veteran of the Automotive industry and currently resides with his family on his Denver, Colorado ranch.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
The Power of Integrated Vision Solutions | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 3:45 PM


Jim Wiley

Jim Wiley

Product Manager
Parker Hannifin

Jim Wiley is a Product Manager for servo and stepper drives with Parker Hannifin Corporation's Electromechanical and Drives Division, where he has spent his entire twenty-year motion control career. After graduating from Carnegie Mellon University with a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering, Jim joined Parker's Daedal Division as an engineer.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Positioner Selection and Motor Sizing | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 3:00 PM
Motion Controllers, Programming, and System Design Basics | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:00 AM


Linda Wilson

Linda Wilson

Editor in Chief
Vision Systems Design

Linda Wilson is Editor in Chief of Vision Systems Design.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
Vision System Design Innovators Awards | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 10:30 AM


Melonee Wise

Melonee Wise

CTO
Agility Robotics

Melonee Wise is the CTO of Agility Robotics. Melonee has a deep history in developing autonomous robots and advancing the robotics industry as we know it today. Prior to joining Agility in 2023, Melonee was the Vice President of Robotics Automation at Zebra Technologies. She was CEO of Fetch Robotics until its acquisition by Zebra Technologies in 2021. Melonee was the second employee at Willow Garage where she led a team of engineers developing next-generation robot hardware and software, including ROS, the PR2, and TurtleBot. Melonee serves as the Chair of the IFR Service Robot Group, as a robotics board member for A3, and on the MHI Roundtable Advisory Committee. Melonee has received many accolades and awards including the MIT Technology Review TR35, Silicon Valley Business Journal’s Women of Influence and 40 Under 40, Supply & Demand Chain Executive’s 2021 Supply Chain Woman of the Year, the 2022 Engelberger award, and as one of eight CEOs changing the way we work by Business Insider. Melonee received a BS in Mechanical Engineering and Physics Engineering and a MS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Illinois.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
The Next Frontier of Automation: Mobile Manipulation Robots (Humanoid Robots) | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 1:30 PM

Automate Show Theater
Humanoid Robotics: Is It Their Time? | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 12:00 PM


Kirby Ann Witte

Kirby Ann Witte

VP of Engineering
ESTAT Actuation

Dr. Kirby Witte is the VP of Engineering at ESTAT Actuation where she leads R&D efforts and translates cutting edge electroadhesive technology into powerful motion control products. Kirby completed her PhD in Mechanical Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University in 2018. Her thesis focused on the design, characterization, and implementation of exoskeletons for athletic augmentation with results published in Science Robotics. After completing her PhD, she worked as a robotics designer at Intuitive Surgical. Her experiences putting people in robots and robots in people highlighted a need for lighter, smaller, and more power-efficient actuators. Kirby continues to pursue her passion for exoskeletons as the primary investigator on a Air Force project focusing on pilot safety. This project leverages electroadhesive technology to develop a first-of-its-kind lightweight exotendon system for protecting fighter pilots during high G events. Exoskeletons and surgical robots must operate under some of the most restrictive power and space constraints. The lessons learned from these fields can reduce the size and power consumption of any robotic system. Kirby is excited to share her passion for space- and power-optimized systems with the Automate audience. Kirby lives in Pittsburgh, PA, the robotics capital of the world. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking and hunting for fossils with her husband, kids and her dog.

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
Retrofit Your Motion System with Linear Electroadhesive Brakes | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 12:45 PM


Allyson Wyatt

Allyson Wyatt

Sr. Applications Engineer
Allied Motion

Allyson Wyatt is a Senior Applications Engineer for Allied Motion. She holds a B.S. in Physics from UC Santa Barbara and has extensive knowledge of motors, encoders, servo drives, and motion systems. Allyson is also an A3 Certified Motion Control Professional and is excited to share her love of physics with this year's attendees.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Basic Machine Design and the Physics of Motion | Tuesday, May 7, 2024 - 9:00 AM


Sreten Zakula

Sreten Zakula

Staff Engineer - Robotics/Automation Applications and Execution
General Motors

Sreten (Steve) Zakula is a Staff Engineer at General Motors primarily responsible for the development and validation of new robotic applications and technologies. He is a Certified Vision Professional and holds a MS in Robotics from Wayne State University.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Robotic Bin Picking Solutions in Automotive | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 10:15 AM


John Zappa

John Zappa

Director of Product Management
Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing (ARM) Institute

John Zappa is the Director of Product Management at the Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing (ARM) Institute. In this role, he is responsible for developing and promoting services that help the organization fulfill its mission to train and empower the manufacturing workforce for careers in robotics.

An industry expert on lifelong learning, John has spoken at numerous industry conferences including Chief Learning Officer Symposium, Society of Human Resource Management, and The Conference Board, and has co-authored articles on corporate tuition assistance programs and talent management.

Session(s):

Automate Show Theater
Hiring for the Future: How To Build an Automation Workforce | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 10:30 AM

Educator Day
PANEL DISCUSSION: Smart Manufacturing Workforce Development Best Practices | Wednesday, May 8, 2024 - 10:30 AM


David Zerkler

David Zerkler

Senior Manager - Machine Vision Learning
Zebra

David Zerkler has been in the industry for 13 years in various technical communication and education roles. He currently leads the machine vision learning group for Zebra Technologies, where they produce training videos and deliver live technical training.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Advanced Image Processing | Thursday, May 9, 2024 - 2:00 PM


Daniel Zindl

Daniel Zindl

Chief Product Officer
Agilox North America

Daniel has been with AGILOX for more than 8 years since 2015. His Responsibilities include the Coordination of the Product Strategy, Innovation Management & Future Business Models and Leading the Product Management Team. He holds a degree in Mechatronics Engineering and a Master's Degree in Innovation and Product Management.

Session(s):

Automate Conference
Robots Unleashed: Why AMRs Are on the Rise and How AI Will Further Disrupt Production Logistics | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 8:00 AM


Andrew Zosel

Andrew Zosel

Senior Vice President
Zebra Technologies

Andy Zosel joined Zebra Technologies in May 2023 as Senior Vice President and is responsible for the Advanced Data Capture, Machine Vision and Robotic Automation businesses.

A true industry veteran, Andy has more than 25 years of experience in the technology and automation markets, with leadership experience in automatic identification, machine vision, robotics, and motion control for factory automation, life sciences and logistics. Prior to joining Zebra, Andy has held multiple leadership roles in Customer Service, Marketing and Engineering, and most recently was President and CEO of Omron Microscan and Omron Delta Tau.

Andy earned his MBA from the University of Phoenix and his BS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Washington. During his career, he has attained multiple certifications in product and project management, including a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt. Andy holds 5 patents, including 3 related to designs in Micro-Opto- Electro-Mechanical-Systems (MOEMS).

Session(s):

Automate Innovation Stage
Maximizing Workforce Efficiency: Three Technological Avenues for Streamlining Repetitive Tasks | Monday, May 6, 2024 - 2:15 PM