Gautam Kotwal

VP of Analytics, Data Platform & Data Science Engineering at Kohl's Department Stores


Heather Lavoie

Chief Strategy Officer at Geneia


Joshua Birk

Developer Evangelist at Salesforce

Joshua Birk is a Developer Evangelist with, bringing a wide range of experience when it comes to software development to the community. On the Salesforce Platform itself, Josh has been developing since around the same time Apex could create custom SOAP endpoints. In the past he has been a consultant, a front end developer for a major national retailer, a dotcom survivor and a dabbler in HTML5, Objective-C, Java, C#, PHP, Python and other languages.

Naomi Ceder

Co-Founder of  Trans*Code


Amul Chapla

Solution Architect at Microsoft

Ashish Gupta

Principal Data Solutions Architect at Microsoft

Enrique Kortright

Senior Academic Program Manager at IBM Analytics

Gaya Magie

Business Development Executive at IBM Watson Internet of Things Academic Initiative

Dr. Patrick Lucey

Director of Data Science at STATS LLC

Tom Pizzato

Business Intelligence Technology Specialist at Microsoft

In his 25 years at Microsoft, Tom has worked with every data technology Microsoft has delivered (starting with SQL Server and Access and progressing to Analytics Platform System and cloud solutions). He is currently focused on Microsoft’s Business Intelligence tools. In this role, Tom provides our customers technical guidance and support in evaluation and implementation planning for using both on-premise and cloud-based solutions to analyze data and make more informed business decisions. These include Excel, Power BI, Azure Data Factory, Azure Machine Learning, HDInsight, and Azure.

Mohammed A. Salam

Professor, Department of Information Technology and Media at Robert Morris University

Mohammed Salam is a Certified Ethical Hacker who teaches Computer Networking, Network Security, Computer forensics, and Ethical Hacking courses. With his 16 years of teaching experience, he has been awarded with certification in Microsoft products, Networking, and Network Security. He is currently helping Chicago Community Colleges in designing courses in cyber security. He is a member of the Association of Information Technology Professionals.


Salam has earned his BS in computer Science from Karnataka University and MS in Computer Science from Northeastern Illinois University, Chicago, IL

Michael Shan

Trainer at Tableau

Michael is a Trainer at Tableau, where he teaches individuals and organizations how to use Tableau Desktop effectively. Before becoming a Trainer, Michael was a member of the Technical Support team. He’s also a Tableau Desktop 10 Certified Professional.


Michael received his BA in Finance and Information Systems at the University of Washington Foster School of Business. He is passionate about all things sports – playing (Fantasy and real life), watching, reading, analyzing, and cheering.

Michael Warjas

Watson Data Platform Evangelist at IBM

Michael Warjas is a Watson Data Platform Evangelist with IBM. He has 20 years experience defining, developing, and delivering cloud based enterprise platforms. His focus is on helping clients evaluate and understand emerging technology frameworks in the context of existing business constraints to achieve compelling results. Current projects include predicting hospital readmissions for diabetics and modeling health insurance benefits by population.  His interests include disruptive innovation, game theory, and the ethics of big data.


Join us May 6th, 2017 for the Escape Data Science and Sports Analytics Conference in Chicago, IL where we will "Learn by Doing."


Brought to you by Northwestern University and Robert Morris University.

Contact Info

Northwestern University

Dr. Faisal Akkawi


339 East Chicago Avenue Chicago, Illinois 60611

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