Our Speakers

Adam Barney Staff Software Engineer, Rocket Mortgage

Adam Barney

Adam is a nerd. That kept me humble and nearly friendless (sniff) through school, but he wears it as a badge of honor now. After buying a Commodore 64 with money from his paper route in the 4th grade, he’s never stopped learning about computers and how to make these stupid machines do cool things. When he's not slinging code for his 9-to-5 job, he's slinging code for himself to keep current on things, playing with electronics and IoT, 3D printing, and watching far too much TV.

Mike Benkovich

Mike Benkovich

A software architect, Azure expert, and former Microsoft evangelist, Mike Benkovich dedicates huge amounts of his time to helping his fellow developers and burgeoning programmers learn about new technologies and platforms. Mike’s website www.benkotips.com equips developers with tips and resources to help them get to grips with technologies including cloud, data and devices, and he produces online courses covering areas like Azure development, data architecture strategies and serverless computing. Follow Mike on Twitter @BenkoTips

Toni Bennet Software Architect, Tigerpaw Software

Toni Bennet

My name is Toni Bennet and I'm a Software Architect at Tigerpaw Software with a demonstrated history of working in the information technology and services industry. I have 12 years of experience as a software developer and skills in web applications (mainly .Net), SQL, IIS, databases, and system administration. I earned my Associate of Applied Science focused in Software Applications & Programming from ITT Technical Institute. I have been in my current role for about 10 months and am looking to improve my public speaking and connect with my community.

I'm a queer, genderfluid person and I spend my time with my wife and our dogs. We play a lot of video games, mainly involving puzzles, survival, and resource management. I was that weird kid who liked sorting light bright bulbs. These days, I like to think I put those skills to good use by studying the puzzles of what we've built and what we want to build, and trying to find a path forward.

Drew Brown CIO, Union Bank and Trust

Drew Brown

Drew Brown is the Chief Information Officer of Union Bank and Trust, where he leads enterprise-wide digital transformation and oversees data engineering and analytics, information security, software engineering, infrastructure, and establishing and driving the technology strategy throughout the bank. Prior to his work at UBT, Drew founded and led two consulting practices, one advising the CIO's of publicly traded companies on IT strategy and turnaround, and the other leading a team of data scientists providing advanced analytics in the healthcare space. Drew's career has spanned most industries and has focused heavily on maturing technology organizations and improving business' use of technology.

In the last two years UBT team has been recognized nationally for processing the second highest number of PPP loans on the program's opening weekend by developing an automated processing pipeline in a week, developing the top-rated mobile banking app in our markets, and being recognized in 2020 by Forbes as the #2 bank in America.

Drew is married with five children and spends his spare time with his family reading, building robots, and rock climbing.

Steven Carlson Cloud Security Architect, FNBO

Steven Carlson

Hello, I’m Steven. I’m a Cloud Security Architect at FNBO. Beyond my former XC Teams, running and education will always be my true passions. Over the last few years God has moved me from south central Nebraska to a little house in Lincoln, Ne. I love coffee and biking to different events in the city. I enjoy traveling, even if it means getting my hands dirty on my parent's farm.

Jacob Charles Owner, Bison Cloud Solutions

Jacob Charles

My name is Jacob Charles. I've worked in the IT industry for over 8 years. I started as a software engineer and moved to a Cloud DevSecOps engineer for KBR Space and Mission Solutions. I've had the great opportunity to solve a variety of problems and grew a passion for security and infrastructure automation. I've recently turned my passion into a product that everyone can benefit from. I founded Bison Cloud Solutions in order to help others improve cloud security and infrastructure automation.

Alain Chautard Angular Consultant, Angular Training

Alain Chautard

Alain is a Google Developer Expert in Web Technologies, Angular, and Google Maps. His daily mission is to help development teams get started and become fluent with Angular. He has taught Angular on all six continents!

A world-traveler and photographer, Alain is also the organizer of the Google Developer Group chapter in Sacramento, California, an international conference speaker, and a published author of several video courses.

Chris Chung Software Delivery Manager, Spreetail

Chris Chung

Chris has always been involved Information Systems through seeking to work with great people in order to tackle complex projects using simple methods. He has gained a holistic view of software though working in business systems analysis, software development, and program management. His curiousity drives him to discover new ways of thinking and partner with individuals on new approachs to old problems. In Chris' free time, he enjoys the outdoors and sporting events with his amazing wife and three beautiful children.

Tom Cudd Lead Cloud Engineer, American Century

Tom Cudd

As an advocate for DevOps, I've helped bring about a positive change in the way Development and Operations teams work together at companies and in the tech community. I work to create automation in complex technical environments driven by the needs of individuals and teams on different stacks. I help early career technologists learn and grow to build great opportunities for themselves.

Kimberly DelSenno UX Developer, Gallup

Kimberly DelSenno

Kim DelSenno is currently a UX developer at Gallup, a company that provides analytics and advice for everything that matters. She wrote her first line of code almost 7 years ago and has been working as a UX developer ever since. During that time she has worked on Gallup.com, Gallup Access and conducted numerous user tests on all of Gallup's websites. When she's not at work or on the computer, she enjoys teaching and practicing yoga, hiking, and spending time with her husband, their two dogs .

Aaron Deming Applications Development Manager, Buildertrend

Aaron Deming

At Buildertrend I have served as a developer, team lead, trainer, and manager. As a team lead, I helped acclimate new developers to my team, managed many projects at once, and acted as the technical owner of the areas of the application that my team owned.

As a trainer and manager I get to onboard all new developers and coach them for several months, until they are ready to graduate from the training team, to one of our feature teams. I also help facilitate and conduct continuing education and knowledge shares for a 50+ person development team.

Arthur Doler Senior Software Engineer, Aviture

Arthur Doler

Arthur (or Art, take your pick) has been a software engineer for 18 years and has worked on things as exciting as analysis software for casinos and things as boring as banking websites. He is an advocate for talking openly about mental health and psychology in the technical world, and he spends a lot of time thinking about how we program and why we program, and about the tools, structures, cultures, and mental processes that help and hinder us from our ultimate goal of writing amazing things. His hair is brown and his thorax is a shiny blue color.

Mike Driscoll Software Engineer, Teach Me Python LLC

Mike Driscoll

Mike Driscoll has been programming with the Python language for more than a decade. When Mike isn't programming for work, he writes about Python on his blog. Mike is also a contributor to Real Python. He has worked with Packt Publishing and No Starch Press as a technical reviewer for their books. Finally, Mike is the author of several books on the Python programming language.

Ryan Ebke Director of Product, Cordova

Ryan Ebke

Hi, I'm Ryan Ebke. I've been in software development for 14 years in a variaty of roles in Software Development and Software product design/delivery. My main focuses are eCommerce, .NET and Node based development.

Stephanie Eckles Software Engineer, Microsoft

Stephanie Eckles

Stephanie Eckles is a front-end-focused SWE at Microsoft. She's also the author of ModernCSS.dev which provides modern solutions to old CSS problems as in-depth tutorials and is the creator of StyleStage.dev, and author of SmolCSS.dev and 11ty.Rocks. Steph has well over a decade of webdev experience that she enjoys sharing as an author, egghead and workshop instructor, Twitch streamer, and conference speaker. She's an advocate for accessibility, scalable CSS, and the Jamstack (especially Eleventy). Offline, she's mom to two girls and a cowboy corgi and enjoys baking.

Benjamin Ferguson Senior Programmer/Analyst, Duncan Aviation

Benjamin Ferguson

Professionally, I am a senior programmer/analyst with Duncan Aviation and have been developing software ever since graduating from SCC - Milford in 2002. Most recently, we have been developing on a new tech stack including angular 2+ and node, both using typescript in VS Code.

Personally, I am a husband and father of 5. I'm also a youth minister, worship leader, football coach, and a mentor.

David Giard United States, Microsoft

David Giard

David Giard is a former accountant and a former biochemist, who has been developing solutions using Microsoft technologies for nearly 3 decades. Currently, David helps people build solutions in his role as a Microsoft Senior Software Engineer. David has been very active in the developer community, speaking at numerous major conferences, code camps, and user groups around the world; helping to lead user groups; and helping to organize conferences and other geek events. He is the host and producer of the mildly popular online TV shows Technology and Friends and GCast. He is the co-author of the Wrox book Real World .NET, C#, and Silverlight. You can read his latest thoughts at DavidGiard.com. His hobbies include video, photography, sports, and embarrassing his sons.

Brian Gorman Owner/Trainer/Developer, Major Guidance Solutions

Brian Gorman

Brian is a Microsoft Azure MVP and is an experienced speaker, author, trainer, and .Net developer with MCSA: Web App Certification, MCSD: App Builder, AZ-900/104/204/220/303/304/400/500, DP-900/300, and MCT (3rd Year) certifications. Brian has a masters of science degree in computer information systems, and a bachelor of science degree in computer science. Additionally, Brian has over ten years of experience instructing college courses online in SQL databases, C#/VB.Net/and Java object-oriented programming, and Microsoft Office. Brian has created many online technical training courses that can be found online on various platforms. Brian has also published a book with APress entitled "Practical Entity Framework." The second edition of the book is currently in production was released in December of 2021 to leverage .Net 6 and EFCore6.

Chad Green Director of IT Architecture, Glennis Solutions

Chad Green

Chad Green is a manager, software development, architect, community leader, Microsoft MVP, and most importantly a father and husband. Over his career spanning three decades, Chad has managed groups from 3 to 63 people, worked on projects in a wide range of markets including education, healthcare, military, government, workforce management, financial services, chemical research, and electronic commerce. Being a big believer in giving back and wanting to ensure that there are cool events for others, Chad founded and chairs the annual Code PaLOUsa conference, organizers the Louisville .NET Meetup user group and the Monthly Tech Leader Coffee and Discussion, and has helped other groups like the Louisville Tech Ladies and events like Cincy Deliver.

Kevin Grossnicklaus President, ArchitectNow

Kevin Grossnicklaus

At one point in his career Kevin was the youngster on most development teams. He got his start developing with Visual Studio and managed .NET code during the early beta cycles in 2001. As a technical author, his first writing experience was for the Visual Basic.NET Bible released in 2002. He has been recognized as a Microsoft MVP since 2009 and is a member of the ASPInsiders program. He is also very active in the local St. Louis development community.

In 2009, Kevin Grossnicklaus started his own software product development firm called ArchitectNow (www.architectnow.net). At ArchitectNow, Kevin and his team specialize in a wide variety of tools and technologies and take pride in helping their customers deliver great solutions on a variety of platforms. As expected (and necessary) today, they are always on the lookout for the “next big thing” in the software or technology space while guiding customers through the waves of new technology.

Born in rural Nebraska, he has spent the last 20 years in St. Louis, Missouri where he lives with his wife Lynda and their three daughters: Alexis, Emily, and Hanna. He is an avid guitar player, home brewer, and gamer including everything from retro arcade games, to board games, to role playing games. When not spending time on any of those hobby’s he waits patiently for a second season of Firefly.

Joseph Guadagno Director, Technology, Rocket Mortgage

Joseph Guadagno

Joe Guadagno is a Director of Engineering at Rocket Mortgage, the nation’s largest mortgage lender based in Detroit, Michigan. He has been writing software for over 20 years, has been an active member of the .NET community, serving as a Microsoft MVP in .NET for more than ten years. At Rocket Mortgage, he leads five software development teams building and modernizing our internal services. He has spoken through the United States and international events on topics ranging from Microsoft .NET, Microsoft Azure, Ionic, Bootstrap, and many others. You can see the complete list at https://www.josephguadagno.net/presentations. When not sitting at a computer, Joe loves to hang out with his family and play games. When not playing games with the family, Joe is checking out the latest in Home Automation. You can connect with Joe on Twitter at @jguadagno, Facebook at JosephGuadagnoNet, and on his blog at https://www.josephguadagno.net

Vaibhav Gujral Director, Global Microsoft Cloud CoE, Capgemini

Vaibhav Gujral

Vaibhav is a thought leader and a seasoned cloud professional currently working at Capgemini as a Director in Global Microsoft Cloud CoE, where he provides trusted technology advisory to the clients while demonstrating a deep understanding of cloud technologies.

He specializes in cloud strategy and governance with deep technical expertise in cloud security, cloud architecture, application architecture, micro-services architecture, and DevOps practices. He helps organizations adopt the cloud the right way by clearly understanding the business drivers and developing a cost-effective solution utilizing suitable architectural patterns and design principles. In addition, he has led several cloud transformation and cloud migration projects for clients located across geographies in the insurance, banking, real estate, and healthcare industries.

He has been awarded Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) award for the Microsoft Azure category since 2020, and he is a Microsoft Certified Trainer. He holds numerous cloud certifications, including Microsoft Certified Azure Solutions Architect Expert and AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate. He has a Bachelor of Engineering degree with Information Technology as his specialization.

He has been an active member of the global Azure community. Apart from being a regular speaker at several user groups, events, and conferences, he also runs the Omaha Azure user group (https://omahaazure.org/), a meetup community of more than 1000 members. He also moderates a Twitter community for Microsoft Azure with over 1000 members.

He regularly blogs at https://vaibhavgujral.com/ and runs his own YouTube channel - https://bit.ly/3r4uAK9.

Courtney Heitman Technical Accessibility Specialist, Gallup

Courtney  Heitman

Courtney is a Technical Accessibility Specialist for Gallup, a company that provides analytics and advice for everything that matters, in Omaha, Nebraska. Courtney's passion for the web all started with teaching her 11-year-old self how to write CSS on a dial-up internet connection on a farm in rural Iowa. Since then she has been in a myriad of positions including a Flash developer, a brief stint as a server admin, a designer, a full stack developer, and a project manager. Her passion is making a web that is usable and accessible to all. When she's not playing with new technology, you can find her creating new recipes in her kitchen or working on her farm.

Shawn Hellwege Senior Front End Developer, University of Nebraska

Shawn Hellwege

I work at the University of Nebraska Admissions office overseeing the front end development of several of our sites relating to Admission. I work with the designers to turn their designs into a website and make changes and maintenance as needed.

While most of my background is in software development I do have a passion for UX and UI and look for opportunities to grow. I have had previous employment at the University where I was the web admin and worked closely developing the best possible experience for the client and delegated responsibilities to a team.

As far as education I got my Bachelor's in Computer Information Systems (eCommerce emphasis) and in 2017 I got my Masters in Instructional Technology at the University of Nebraska - Lincoln. I am obtaining a second masters degree in Integrated Media Communications with a minor in Marketing as well as a certificate in PR and Social Media. I do have a passion for how people learn through computers (especially games) and this really forms how I view UX and how a really great UX system is one so unobtrusive you don't even notice it at all.

Outside of work I have wife and 3 wonderful children. While I have really enjoyed my web freelance opportunities over the 15 years, having a family has heavily curtailed that; but totally worth it.

Evan Hennis Software Engineer

Evan Hennis

Evan is a Google Developer Expert in Machine learning. He has a computer science degree from Iowa State and a master's degree from Georgia Tech with a specialization in machine learning. He has been writing .NET code for the last 17 years. He recently started teaching 'Advanced C#' at Des Moines Area Community College.

Robert Herbig Lead Software Engineer, SEP

Robert Herbig

Robert Herbig is passionate about leading teams that can deliver products that users love.

He is a Lead Software Engineer at SEP, a software product design and development company. In his 10+ years in the software industry, he has worked on products ranging in size from small apps to enterprise systems; embedded, desktop, web, and mobile platforms; and in a variety of markets and domains including aerospace, medical, agriculture, construction, and secure communication.

As an AI Practice Lead at SEP, he strives to educate clients and peers about what AI can do, identify complex problems AI can address in whole or in part, and incorporate AI into software products that make a difference for their users.

He currently lives in Carmel, Indiana with his wonderful wife, three rambunctious sons, and three dogs.

Nick Hershberger Information Technology Development & Integration Manager, Ameritas

Nick Hershberger

I’m a manager, agile coach, and team leader with a passion for building effective teams. For over 20 years, I’ve been helping software development teams deliver large-scale, world-class solutions to customers. Learning from experiences and communicating my skills to others energize me. Overall, my passion for application development is combined with a love for big-picture development and daily operational leadership.

Timothy Ingledue Enterprise Infrastructure Lead Developer, Orion Tech

Timothy Ingledue

Timothy Ingledue is an accomplished software engineer with over two decades of experience in the field. Specializing in the Microsoft and AWS cloud technology stacks, Timothy has worked on a variety of projects across different industries, ranging from industrial to finance to e-commerce.

Throughout his career, Timothy has demonstrated a deep understanding of software development principles, including software design, coding, testing, and deployment. He has a strong background in C#, .NET, Web Assembly, Blazor, Azure, DynamoDB, and SQL Server, among other technologies. He is also experienced in agile methodologies, DevOps practices, and cloud infrastructure.

In addition to his technical skills, Timothy is also an effective communicator and collaborator, able to work effectively with both technical and non-technical stakeholders. He is committed to staying up-to-date with the latest industry trends and technologies, and is passionate about sharing his knowledge and expertise with others through presentations and mentoring.

Theresa Krupicka

Jim Kudirka Founder, Principal Solution Architect, Premier Software Systems, LLC

Jim Kudirka

Jim is the Founder and Principal Architect of Premier Software Systems, a company leading the change toward sustainable and repeatable best practices in software engineering. Through both practice and training, he has achieved mastery of the software development process and now dedicates his time to mentoring and coaching organizations.

Jim has over 28 years of software engineering experience, with 20+ years leading development teams and projects. He is passionate about good software design techniques and applying sound engineering principles that result in reduced time to market, exceptional quality, and minimizing overall cost.

Jim is a native Nebraskan, has a wife and two children, and received an Electrical Engineering degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Seth Larson Engineering Team Lead, Raven Industries

Seth Larson

A software engineer in the Ag industry with experience working on web applications/services, IoT, and embedded applications. Organizer of South Dakota Code Camp and Sioux Falls Developer's Group. Currently focused on keeping a team moving forward, modernizing and instrumenting a cloud products codebase spanning multiple languages and platforms.

Cathy Ludwig Shyft Solutions

Scott McAllister Developer Advocate, PagerDuty

Scott McAllister

Scott McAllister is a Developer Advocate for PagerDuty. He has been building web applications in several industries for over a decade. Now he's helping others learn about a wide range of web technologies and incident management principles. When he's not coding, writing or speaking he enjoys long walks with his wife, skipping rocks with his kids, and is happy whenever Real Salt Lake, Seattle Sounders FC, Manchester City, St. Louis Cardinals, Seattle Mariners, Chicago Bulls, Seattle Storm, Seattle Seahawks, OL Reign FC, St. Louis Blues, Seattle Kraken, Barcelona, Fiorentina, Borussia Dortmund or Mainz 05 can manage a win.

James McKee Global Developer Security Program Manager, Trimble

James McKee

James is a developer (MCPDEA) and security advocate (CISSP) whose biggest responsibility is leading developer security practices. He sets the standards and procedures for how the practice operates, and leads all client engagement efforts with regard to security. He also takes the lead in making sure that company staff (developers specifically) are properly trained and following best practices with regard to application security. In his current position he is responsible for the training and providing product guidence for developers across the world.

James also acts as a system and application architect, and oftentimes he evaluates application design as part of the security audits he performs. In a past life James was responsible for Architecting and developing solutions on multimillion implementation efforts. Key clients included the Eight Fortune 500 companies (Seven in the Fortune 100), as well as several well known non-profits and leaders in their industries. Vertices served included healthcare, transportation, financial services, retail, insurance, and energy.

In his free time James is involved with running BSidesBoulder.

Website: Punkcoder.com
Twitter: @punkcoder

Brian McKeiver Co-Owner | Microsoft MVP, BizStream

Brian McKeiver

Brian McKeiver is Co-Owner at BizStream, digital agency in Allendale, MI. At BizStream he is a solution architect, visionary, Microsoft Azure MVP, Kentico Xperience MVP, and Kentico Kontent MVP. He has over 19 years of experience leading his agency of more than 30 employees, about a hundred clients spread out across North America, and one heck of an interesting story of how it all started from a two-person team. In addition to his expertise in web development, cloud, integration, and digital marketing, Brian is active with the tech community via his blog at Mcbeev.com.

Adam McQuistan Solution Lead & Engineer IV, Mutual of Omaha

Adam McQuistan

Experienced Software Engineer with a demonstrated history of working in High-Tech Enterprises such as Biotech and Digital Media. Skilled across technology stacks and layers including server-side development with Python, JavaScript, Java, strong background in analytics and data engineering utilizing distributed computing technologies like Spark, Hive, Kafka, Kinesis and, deep understanding of relational databases (PostgreSQL especially).

Passionate about building data driven software in scalable cloud computing platforms to solve challenging problems with potentially huge impact. I also write frequently about these topics on my blog thecodinginterface.com built from scratch using Python and the Django web framework backed by PostgreSQL.

Don Miller Director & Digital Technology Manager, TouchStone Digital

Don Miller

Don is a prominent voice in the field of software engineering who leads high-value development projects. He’s widely regarded for his technical skills, as a developer of mobile and web applications, and for his broad understanding of databases and information systems. His reputation as a reliable, entrepreneurial expert who manages teams of developers to build quality software is well deserved. Don is committed to providing technical solutions through effective programming and project management. Yet, even with his extensive knowledge, Don communicates technical concepts well to the uninitiated. In fact, he’s a popular speaker who frequently shares insight from his 20+ years of building custom desktop, web and mobile software to groups around the country. A graduate of the University of Toledo, Don gives back to the school by molding and updating the curriculum via advisory committees and teaching classes to future programmers.

Piyush Neekhra Software Engineering Manager, Spreetail

Piyush Neekhra

I work as a Software Engineering Manager at Spreetail, a fast growing e-commerce company based out of Omaha, Nebraska. I am fortunate enough to have worked in multiple geographies with numerous teams and diverse set of amazing people. I have been in the Software Engineering industry for over 12 years in roles such as Software Engineer, Tech Lead and Engineering Manager. I believe in continuous learning, thus I am also doing MBA from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign while working full-time. I enjoy public speaking and people management, and have held leadership positions in some nonprofits as well. Recently I was a speaker at the HDC conference in Omaha where I delivered an in-person presentation.

Duane Newman Co-Founder, Alien Arc Technologies, LLC

Duane Newman

Duane is Co-Founder of Alien Arc Technologies, LLC where he focuses on creating apps targeting mobile devices, modern desktops, and the Internet of Things. As a Microsoft MVP and technology enthusiast with a passion for good software he strives to bring solutions that improve or eliminate costly duplication and repetitive processes so more important things can be done. He enjoys teaching others through his random blog posts and by speaking at conferences on topics ranging from DevOps to Xamarin. When not behind a computer screen he can be found sharing his love of SCUBA and all things underwater with new divers at the pool or through his underwater videos and photos.

Rob Nickolaus Sr. Manager, Software Engineering, Helix by Q2

Rob Nickolaus

With 25 years of experience, I have worked as a developer, IT manager, ScrumMaster, small business owner, managing consultant, volunteer, and chief bottle washer. I have led teams through rapid growth, challenging technology implementations, and entrepreneurial bets. I love leading in the "positive chaos" space with teams experiencing growth and challenges. As a lifelong learner and risk taker, I have many scars and war stories to match the wins and celebrations. I'm happy to share my experiences to help those around me. Need an opinion? Just ask!

Check me out at https://www.linkedin.com/in/robnickolaus/

Kirk Payne Senior Programmer/Analyst, Duncan Aviation

Kirk Payne

When I first started in computers at the start of my career, I worked with setting up computers and servers. From an early age, I loved programming computers to do interesting or useful things. In my computer and server duties, I always found reasons to program tasks to make the job easier and more efficient. I decided to get a degree in programming. After getting that degree, I was asked to apply for a job at Duncan Aviation as a programmer. Ever since then, I have done what I loved and have learned so much from my co-workers and mentors. I have been programming for over 20 years now and have seen the birth of Object Oriented principles. I have seen the good and the bad of these principles and strive to help others with what I have learned. I am currently a Senior Programmer/Analyst at Duncan Aviation.

Zach Perkins DevOps Engineer, Fusion Medical Staffing

Zach Perkins

I'm a seasoned tech professional with a breadth of experience in development processes and cloud infrastructure. I've had the opportunity to work with Azure, AWS and VMWare automation tools to optimize delivery of cloud resources and applications. My professional focus is on automation, optimization and continuous improvement, but I love to learn about everything. I believe the key to creating a great system is cross-collaboration of people, removing bottlenecks and continuous improvement.

Chris Powell Software Engineer, Hudl

Chris Powell

A few things to know about me is that I like to live an active lifestyle: hiking, paddleboarding, sports, etc are some of the my favorite activities. I've been fortunate to travel often in my life to places like: Singapore, Paraguay, Rome, Sydney, Nairobi, etc. And most importantly, I'm a husband and father. Often times, you can find me taking some action with the point of making those people in my life happier.

Professionally: Earned a bachelor's degree in Mass Communications at Kansas State University, focused coursework in advertising and journalism. Earned another bachelor's degree in computer science from University of Colorado at Boulder.

Rodrigo Ramirez Software Engineer II, Mutual of Omaha

Rodrigo Ramirez

I love technology and its possibilities, that's why I picked the computer science path and I've been working as a Software Engineer for 15 years in multiple companies and in 3 different contries. I believe sharing different ideas, solutions and cultures can achieve greater results. My family is my major treasure and I consider myself a music, movies and videogames lover.

Eric Reichwaldt President, Shyft Solutions LLC

Eric Reichwaldt

"The future is already here. It's just not evenly distributed yet" - John Gibson probably "Aim for the moon. If you miss, you may hit a star" - W Clement Stone

I'm a big dreamer that is passionate about helping people and organizations find ways to work smarter, not harder. Too many times we find ourselves in life stuck on the treadmill of "that's the way we've always done it." Don't be afraid to try new things, take risks, and occassionally fail. After serving in the US Air Force as a weather forecaster for 10 years I moved into the software development world eventually starting a company with two of my best friends combining our military experience and weather domain knowledge with our passion for technology to help modernize software in the Department of Defense and commercial organizations. I love teaching and coaching software developers and teams. When I'm not working, you might find me at the race track driving fast, in the garage building something neat, or at my desk working on a hobby project or playing video games.

Rob Richardson @rob_rich

Rob Richardson

Rob Richardson is a software craftsman building web properties in ASP.NET and Node, Vue and React. He’s a Microsoft MVP, published author, frequent speaker at conferences, user groups, and community events, and a diligent teacher and student of high quality software development. You can find this and other talks on https://robrich.org/presentations and follow him on twitter at @rob_rich.

John Roby Scrum Master

John Roby

I have worked in IT project management since 2000, mostly in the waterfall methodology. In 2014 I became a Certified Scrum Master and served as Scrum Master for two scrum teams. I am working to continue my Agile development journey.

Mitchel Sellers CEO, IowaComputerGurus, Inc.

Mitchel Sellers

Mitchel Sellers, Microsoft MVP, ASPInsider, is the CEO of IowaComputerGurus, Inc. an Ankeny, Iowa based software consulting organization. Mitchel enjoys sharing his experiences with others at local events and conferences. As a consultant and former educator, Mitchel tries to take a real-world approach to software development presentations. When not working with code you will find him flying around the US.

Erik Shafer Software Engineer, Trility

Erik Shafer

Erik is a software engineer with a passion for learning, designing, implementing, and teaching solutions. His current adventure is in e-commerce where he builds maintainable, resilient, replayable, observable, and high-performance systems for an industry that never sleeps. He has designed, built, migrated, refactored, and maintained systems in .NET, JVM, and even some NodeJS. Current obsessions include event sourcing, CQRS, event-driven architecture, distributed and observable systems, and breaking down complex business domains.

When not working with software or developing solutions for the business, he enjoys powerlifting, traveling, listening to heavy metal, and playing either online games or tabletop games like Dungeons & Dragons.

Nathaniel Shere Technical Services Director, Craft Compliance

Nathaniel Shere

Nat Shere has worked in the security industry for eight years, specializing in ethical hacking and secure coding. He has experience both as a security consultant and as a product security engineer. As a consultant, he has performed penetration testing services for small and large companies alike and presented findings to both technical teams and executive leadership. As a product security engineer, Nat has worked with development teams throughout the development lifecycle to ensure that security requirements and testing are a priority. Finally, Nat has college level and public speaking experience, which has helped him learn to discuss complex, technical issues in a plain, clear manner.

Dennis Stepp Software Engineer, Lirio

Dennis Stepp

I passionately deliver innovative software solutions that enhance the customer experience and maximize business value. Building upon over a decade of software engineering experience I assist technologists in architecture, automation, design, implementation, testing, and workflow. I continuously broaden my skills through game development, conference speaking, and networking within the software development community.

Brent Stewart Co-Founder, Alien Arc Technologies

Brent Stewart

As a professional software developer with over two decades of experience, I have seen many development trends come and go and learned that there is not a shortcut to being a great developer. I enjoy teaching others what I have learned and try to mentor others whenever I can. I am a co-organizer of the Kansas City .NET User Group and love speaking at conferences.

I am a creator at heart and have started multiple businesses over the years in a variety of industries. My latest venture is Alien Arc Technologies which allows me to take my ideas and give them form. I love quality in all things and I always try to provide the best quality in everything I do. If it is worth doing, then it is worth doing right.

Nien Sui Solution Architect, Sui Dynasty

Nien Sui

Nien Sui is a published author and an invited international speaker. He brings in two decades of technical expertise, research experience and multiple advanced degrees in computer engineering and computer science. He has worked with diverse teams across various disciplines and countries.

Besides technology, Nien is interested in positive psychology, community building, and career guidance.

Jeremy Suing Manager, Business Systems, Mutual of Omaha

Jeremy Suing

Jeremy Suing is a Manager, Business Systems for Mutual of Omaha in Workplace Solutions. Mr. Suing has been involved in management and development of enterprise software systems for more than 25 years, working in both large corporate and educational environments. Mr. Suing has received the Certified Scrum Master, Certified Product Owner, and Certified Scrum Developer designations from the ScrumAlliance. Prior to joining Mutual of Omaha in March 2023, he was a Software Engineering Manager with Spreetail for 10 months and had spent the previous 16 and a half years to that with the Jeffrey S. Raikes School and the School of Computing at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) as the Senior Program Lead for Design Studio and a Lecturer, respectfully. Prior to joining UNL, Mr. Suing had 7 years of software engineering and project management experience working directly with ERP software solutions for Oracle USA, Inc. (formerly J.D. Edwards & Company and then PeopleSoft, Inc.). He has a Master of Science in Computer Science from the University of Colorado at Denver and received his Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and Mathematics from the University of Nebraska at Kearney.

Jordan Thayer AI Practice Lead, SEP

Jordan Thayer

I'm excited to teach you about artificial intelligence and to help you use it to tackle some of the problems you face today.

At SEP I'm working to establish our artificial intelligence practice. My responsibilities include educating clients and peers about what AI can do, identifying complex problems AI can address in whole or in part, and incorporating AI into software products that make a difference for their users.

Prior to joining SEP, I've held roles as a research scientist for a startup, the Charles-Stark Draper Laboratory, and an R&D consultancy. In each of these positions, I've done essentially the same thing: find and deliver feasible solutions to technically challenging problems that arise in a wide variety of domains and industries.

I completed my PhD in artificial intelligence at the University of New Hampshire in 2012. My research focused on using approximation and machine learning to solve problems known to be computationally intractable, such as automated planning and scheduling problems.

Joel Tosi Co-Founder, Hands-On Coach, Dojo & Co

Joel Tosi

Just a dude trying to help out people and teams that are trying to learn and create interesting products. With experience in dev, architecture, management, and product - I try to help teams communicate more effectively and build their products in a maintainable way that allows room for product discovery.

Andy Unterseher Software Architect, Don't Panic Labs

Andy Unterseher

Andy has been a Software Architect working at Don't Panic Labs since 2011. He has a passion for software architecture and building software with a disciplined engineering approach. Working with local Nebraska companies of all sizes he has designed numerous software systems across many domains and problem spaces.

Ken Versaw IT Manager, Nelnet

Ryan Versaw Data Science Engineering Manager, Density

Ryan Versaw

My focus areas have varied throughout the years, including areas like Full Stack, Platform, Embededded, and Data Science. These days I'm leading the Data Science team at Density, where my goal is to produce the most reliable workplace occupancy and usage data possible.

Jason Weaver Head of Product, Parchment

Alex Will United States, ArchitectNow

Alex Will

Alex started out as a mechanical engineer student until his Sophomore year when Alex took his first computer science class. After the first project of making a terminal chutes and ladders game Alex immediately switched majors. Since switching majors, Alex has never looked back. Alex's favorite part of computer science is the problem solving and the creativeness he gets to apply in algorithms. Alex is now the CTO at ArchitectNow. Alex loves to be active in playing basketball and baseball.

Matt Will Principal Software Engineer and CoE Lead, Spreetail

Brian Zimmer Don't Panic Labs

Brian Zimmer

Brian Zimmer has been with the Nebraska Global / Don’t Panic Labs family of companies for over ten years. Holding a Master of Business Administration and having completed the Jeffrey S. Raikes School at the University of Nebraska, Brian has a diverse set of experiences blending technology, business, and innovation.

Brian is accountable for the business development strategy for Don’t Panic Labs product and service offerings. On a regular basis, Brian works with potential partners to understand their vision and form up a plan to refine, validate, and bring it to life. Additional experiences within Nebraska Global / Don’t Panic Labs include bringing the EliteForm company to life, performing deal diligence, and participating in the Nebraska Angels.

Other professional experiences outside of Nebraska Global / Don’t Panic Labs include building his own IT consulting practice and as a faculty lecturer teaching the Design Studio capstone class at the Jeffrey S. Raikes School.