STARWEST 2017 - Conference Speakers | TechWell

Conference archive

Conference Speakers

Appdiff, Inc.

Jason Arbon is the CEO of Appdiff, which is redefining how enterprises develop, test, and ship mobile apps with zero code and zero setup required. He was formerly the director of engineering and product at, where he led product strategy to deliver crowdsourced testing via more than...Read more

Wayne Ariola

Known for his efforts to promote continuous testing, Wayne Ariola has contributed to the design of many innovative technologies and received several patents for his inventions. A recognized leader on topics such as service virtualization, SOA and API quality, software quality governance, and application security, Wayne is a frequent contributor...Read more

Adam Auerbach
Lincoln Financial Group

Vice president of quality and DevOps engineering at Lincoln Financial Group, Adam Auerbach is responsible for leading the implementation of continuous testing and continuous delivery across the organization. Previously Adam was the senior director of technology for advanced testing and release services at Capital One Financial Corporation. Adam led Capital...Read more

Richard Bender

Richard Bender has more than forty-five years experience in software with a primary focus on quality assurance and testing. He has consulted internationally to large and small corporations, government agencies, and the military. Richard’s work has included a wide variety of application classes and technology bases from embedded systems to...Read more


Melissa Benua has worked in nearly every software development role—dev, test, DevOps, and program management—at companies big and small. She's created and run high-availability, high-quality services on products such as mParticle, PlayFab, Bing, Cortana, and Xbox One. Melissa discovered her love of massively-scaled systems while growing the Bing backend, where...Read more


Michael Bolton is a consulting software tester and testing teacher who helps people solve testing problems that they didn’t realize they could solve. He is the co-author (with senior author James Bach) of Rapid Software Testing, a methodology and mindset for testing software expertly and credibly in uncertain conditions and...Read more


A VP of global delivery and solutions for tap|QA, Inc., Jennifer Bonine began her career in consulting, implementing large ERP solutions. Jennifer has held executive level positions leading development, quality assurance and testing, organizational development, and process improvement teams for Fortune 500 companies in several domains. In an engagement for...Read more


Hans Buwalda has been working with information technology since his high school years. In his career, Hans has gained experience as a developer, manager, and principal consultant for companies and organizations worldwide. He was a pioneer of the keyword approach to testing and automation, now widely used throughout the industry....Read more

CSAA Insurance Group

Originally focused on becoming an accountant, Marcia Buzzella shifted gears and twenty years ago applied her passion for quality and details to the art of software testing. She is now the testing practice leader at CSAA Insurance Group, where she manages the creation and maintenance of testing standards, builds trusted...Read more


Ömürden Cengiz is a QA lead at Hipo, a digital product consultancy that specializes in delivering design, development, and strategy services to startups and enterprises worldwide. For the past nine years, he has worked in CRM and Telco projects in companies including Nortel and Huawei. For two years,...Read more


Melissa Chawla manages a software development team at Guidewire. For the previous five years, she managed the test infrastructure and performance engineering teams at Shutterfly. Prior to that, Melissa held software development positions at startups in the high performance computing storage and development tools software industries. She worked in the...Read more

Unspecified LLC

Some have described Dawn Code as the most passionate tester they have ever met. Her current role as recent founder of startup Unspecified LLC, encompasses her love of testing and test automation with her future goal of utilizing machine learning and cognitive computing for applications. A lifelong learner who often...Read more


With thirteen years of QA experience across various logistic domains, Lisa denDekker-Redemann is the UPS flight and crew QA manager, working on mobile solutions, creating a mobile lab, and transitioning her area to DevOps. Lisa’s responsibilities have included transitioning the QA role to agile, re-defining QA artifacts, and championing the...Read more

Mike Duskis

Mike Duskis got his test automation start in 1997 using Rational Robot on a multimedia interleaving product. Through the years, he rotated through testing, development, and test management roles for industries ranging from higher education to medical devices but rarely drifted far from the source code. He currently plays test...Read more

Isabel Evans
Independent Consultant

Independent quality and testing consultant Isabel Evans has more than thirty years of IT experience in quality management and testing in the financial, communications, and software sectors. Her quality management work focuses on encouraging IT teams and customers to work together via flexible processes designed and tailored by the teams...Read more

Olympus Corporation of the Americas

Jon Fetrow has fifteen years of experience in healthcare-related software focused on testing, process, and quality. He has led and mentored team members in test automation, test strategy, and agile processes by applying best practices and methodologies to continually improve testing. In his five years with Olympus Corporation of the...Read more

Andrea Fox
Cerner Corporation

Andrea Fox was a collections supervisor before making the switch to software testing as a test analyst. With a natural curiosity and mind for detail, it quickly became the perfect fit. A senior test analyst with Cerner for three years, Andrea spends her time developing an internal best practice for...Read more

Cher Fox
Fox Consulting

Cher Fox (@TheDatanista) brings thirty years of experience as a solution architect, developer, tester, and analyst for business intelligence, data warehouse, and software development industries. Her experience includes more than twenty-five years of training corporate users on IT applications and business processes. A board member for the Colorado...Read more

Bob Galen
Zenergy Technologies

An agile methodologist, practitioner, and coach, Bob Galen helps guide leaders and teams in their pragmatic adoption and organizational shift toward Scrum and other agile methods. Bob is often called “a Coach of Coaches” because of his deep and broad experience in the agile arena. He is director, agile practices...Read more

CA Technologies

Julie Gardiner is a pragmatic, practical, and people-driven leader, specializing in testing, agile, and quality. An enthusiastic and passionate speaker, her presentations worldwide come from real-world experiences in her more than twenty-five years in the industry. As product management director at CA Technologies, Julie is able to influence software quality...Read more

American Family Insurance

At American Family Insurance Byron Glick is part of the I/S quality engineering team, delivering software quality assurance, people advantages, and practice transformation. His passion is helping technologists deliver greater value to their organizations and constituents. Byron led the first campus-wide ISP for the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the first...Read more


In software quality assurance for fifteen years, Oscar Gracia has worked in diverse situations—start-ups to mature organizations, small and large teams, waterfall to agile methodologies—to build a wide array of software from real-time ad-exchange to payment system software. For the past five years, Oscar has been working with AppFolio, focusing...Read more

Dorothy Graham
Software Test Consultant

In software testing for more than forty years, Dorothy Graham is coauthor of four books—Software Inspection, Software Test Automation, Foundations of Software Testing, and Experiences of Test Automation—and is currently working with Seretta Gamba on a test automation patterns wiki. A popular and entertaining speaker at conferences and seminars worldwide,...Read more

Grand Software Testing

Jon Hagar is a systems software engineer and testing consultant, supporting software product integrity and verification and validation (V&V), with a specialization in mobile and embedded software system testing. For more than thirty years, Jon has worked in software testing and engineering projects. He authored Software Test Attacks to Break...Read more

Dawn Haynes
PerfTestPlus, Inc.

Dawn Haynes is CEO, testing coach, and consultant for PerfTestPlus, Inc. A highly regarded trainer of software testers, Dawn blends experience with a real-world view to provide testers with tools and techniques to help them generate new approaches to common and complex software testing problems. Passionate about improving the state...Read more

Driven Forward

Glen Hellman is the founder of Driven Forward, an organization that helps companies with leadership development, team building, and strategic planning. Glen has more than thirty-four years of high tech sales, marketing, and executive management experience including years as a hired-gun turn-around CEO working for private equity investors. He’s founded...Read more

Brian Hicks

Brian Hicks is a software engineer, development manager, and technical architect with over 15 years of hands-on experience designing and developing software using core Java, web services, and related technologies in both the commercial and public sectors. He is also a Certified ScrumMaster® and has experience implementing agile processes, leading...Read more

Paul Holland
Medidata Solutions, Inc.

With more than twenty years’ experience in software testing, Paul Holland is a senior director of test engineering at New York City-based Medidata Solutions, Inc. Previously, he spent two years as head of testing at a small consultancy, two years as the principal consultant/owner at Testing Thoughts, and seventeen years...Read more

HCL Technologies

An Open Group Master Certified IT specialist in application development, Marianne Hollier has strong, practical expertise in measurably improving the software development lifecycle and driving the necessary cultural changes to make it work. Marianne is instrumental in architecting, tailoring, and deploying best practices and appropriate software development tools on many...Read more

PQA Testing

Director of quality for PQA Testing Mike Hrycyk has been trapped in the world of quality since he first did user acceptance testing nineteen years ago. He has survived all the different levels and a wide spectrum of technologies/environments to become the quality dynamo that he is today. Mike believes...Read more


QA department head at Baaz, Inc., Talal Ibdah has more than seven years of experience and knowledge covering the areas of e-business performance optimization and quality engineering, release management, leadership, test automation, strategic data analysis, social media marketing, as well as project management, progress monitoring, and performance KPI tracking. Talal...Read more

Griffin Jones
Congruent Compliance

Griffin Jones is an Agile consultant and coach, specializing in applying human-centered systems thinking to regulated industries. He has a technical background of over twenty-five years of testing as an individual contributor, Manager, Director, and Consultant - for medical device and pharmaceutical companies, clinical research organizations, banks, and insurance companies....Read more

E-gineering, LLC

Sreekala Kalidindi is a senior software test engineer and certified Scrum Master, currently working with E-gineering, LLC, a custom software solutions company based in Indianapolis, Indiana. Sreekala has been manually testing software products for over twelve years and has been doing so within regulated industries for the past four years....Read more

Tania Katan
CEO of Creative Trespassing
Creative Trespassing

Tania Katan, CEO of Creative Trespassing, is an award-winning author, creative consultant and keynote speaker who believes in storytelling at all costs! She has been a featured speaker at Business of Software, Social Innovation Summit, Etsy, S.H.E. Summit, NPR, Comedy Central Stage, TEDx, and more. Her work has been written...Read more

Ultimate Software

Tariq King is the director of quality engineering at Ultimate Software. With more than fifteen years of experience in software testing research and practice, Tariq provides technical leadership, people leadership, strategic direction, and staff training in software quality and test engineering. He has previously held positions of test manager, test...Read more

Stacy Kirk
QualityWorks Consulting Group, LLC

Women Who Test Sessions

As a software QA architect, agile coach, coder, and speaker, Stacy Kirk champions quality and process innovation in software development. She has led global IT teams to deliver cutting-edge web, mobile, and enterprise applications in a variety of industries from advertising to security. Stacy founded QualityWorks Consulting Group and ...Read more

Mark Lambert
Vice President of Products

Mark Lambert, Vice President of Products, is responsible for ensuring that Parasoft solutions deliver real value to the organizations adopting them. His team helps customers optimize their software development processes by assessing their specific development needs, then determining how to apply Parasoft technologies, processes, and methodologies to achieve their goals....Read more

Applied Research Laboratories: University of Texas

Software engineer Julie Lebo has more than eight years of test engineering experience, which began when, as a student, she developed her interest in and appreciation for finding bugs and solving problems. After graduation, Julie became a software developer and quickly became the lead test engineer for a software development...Read more

Claire Lohr
Lohr Systems

Claire Lohr has been an active professional in the computer field for thirty years, with the last twenty years emphasizing software process improvement and testing. Claire provides training—design, authoring, and instruction—and consulting services for a wide variety of both government and commercial clients. She is a Lloyd’s Register trained ISO...Read more

Wilson Mar

Wilson Mar has been building and bringing enterprise applications to market on major platforms—from mobile to server clouds—as an architect, developer, performance tester, and manager. His website provides concise, in-depth advice on leading technologies. For the past three years, Wilson has been refining his training techniques on Git...Read more


Working with companies and testing teams of all sizes and skills, Jeffrey Martin is product owner of SmartBear Software’s test management solution QAComplete. With more than fifteen years of experience in product management, quality, regulatory, sales, engineering, and marketing, Jeffrey brings his broad, cross-discipline skill set to uncover unique insights...Read more

Daria Mehra
Quid, Inc.

Daria Mehra has been a bug huntress in the SF Bay Area since the roaring 2000s. Her software development background in distributed systems prepared her for the challenges of testing SaaS and appliance products in data storage space and, more recently, web-based data analytics. As a director of quality engineering,...Read more

CA Technologies

Kenneth Merkel’s twenty-two year IT career has covered development, test, and operations. From developing in the telecommunications industry to helping customers with development platforms, testing frameworks, and operations platforms for monitoring applications, Kenneth has spanned the entire SDLC. For the past seven years Kenneth has focused on service virtualization at...Read more

Beaufort Fairmont

Paul Merrill is principal software engineer in test and founder of Beaufort Fairmont Automated Testing Services. Paul works with clients every day to accelerate testing, reduce risk, and increase the value of testing processes with test automation. An entrepreneur, tester, and software engineer, Paul has a unique perspective...Read more

Dell EMC

A test architect in the Dell EMC infrastructure solutions group, Geoff Meyer has more than thirty years of industry experience as a software developer, manager, program manager, and director. Geoff oversees the test strategy and architecture for more than 400 software and hardware testers across India, Taiwan, and the United...Read more


Chief technology officer and cofounder of LeanDog, Jeff “Cheezy” Morgan has been teaching classes and coaching teams on agile and lean techniques for twelve years. Most of his work has focused on the engineering practices used by developers and testers. For the past few years, he has experienced great success...Read more

Bayside Consultants

With operations experience in a variety of regulatory settings from public utilities to video games, Bill has been involved in projects that require compliance with payment processing, privacy, rate structures and consumer protection. After joining a global QA organization, Bill broadened his legal and regulatory compliance background with testing for regional requirements from around...Read more

Progressive Insurance

Umang Nahata is a senior system test engineer with Progressive Insurance, where he applies architectural, technical, and process knowledge to deliver software assets that add value by increasing the breadth, coverage, and speed of testing. He has an inquisitive spirit and researches new approaches, tools, and techniques to solve complex...Read more

Michael Nauman

Michael Nauman started out his career doing computer aided design but after a decade made the leap from an AutoCAD user to a tester on the test development team for Autodesk Inc.’s flagship product AutoCAD. He has spent the past twenty years testing various versions of AutoCAD. Michael started out...Read more

Jaimee Newberry
Picture This Clothing

Jaimee Newberry is the CEO of Picture This Clothing. She brings industry leadership and experience gained from advising C-level and senior management teams at startups, agencies, and Fortune 500 companies. Her insight, practices, and a personal ecology have proven to elevate the culture, processes and quality of high-performance software design and...Read more

Kristoffer Nordström
Northern Test Consulting AB

Kristoffer Nordström is a Test Developer that in his career has worked with technologies such as Telecommunications System, Distributed Compilers, Cloud technology, Smartphone OS development, Embedded systems, and much more. A testing devotee and a member of the Context-Driven test community who with his own company, Kristoffer consults and teaches...Read more

Broadridge Financial Solutions

Concurrent Sessions

For the past three years, Meher Nori has been global head for quality assurance at Broadridge Financial Solutions. He has introduced methods to measure quality using metrics and has coauthored three publications/presentations in the areas of performance testing, Big Data testing, and mobile testing. Previously, Meher worked in strategy, program...Read more

Jeffery Payne
Coveros, Inc.

Jeffery Payne is CEO and founder of Coveros, Inc., a software company that builds secure software applications using agile methods. Since its inception in 2008, Coveros has become a market leader in secure agile principles and recognized by Inc. magazine in 2012 as one of the fastest growing private companies...Read more

Maaret Pyhäjärvi
F-Secure Oyj

A software professional with testing emphasis, Maaret Pyhäjärvi considers herself an empirical technologist, a tester and a programmer, a catalyst for improvement, and a speaker. Maaret’s day job is working with a software product development team as a hands-on testing specialist with focus on exploratory testing. In addition to tester...Read more

Jithesh Ramachandran

An information technology leader at Infosys, Jithesh Ramachandran has expertise in software development, quality assurance, testing, and software process improvement in a highly matrixed and collaborative environment. He has more than seventeen years of strategic leadership experience providing technology-enabled business solutions. Jithesh has used his IT role to align with...Read more

Mutual of Omaha

At Mutual of Omaha Bambi Rands is a quality assurance lead with a focus on mobile testing. Leveraging her prior experience on the business side of insurance, she has spent the past fifteen years creating testing solutions in roles of business analyst, consultant, trainer, and quality assurance lead. With real-world...Read more


Paola Rossaro is Co-Founder and CTO at Nouvola. She loves seeing data and distributed systems in action, working flawlessly. Her career has spanned leadership roles at Teachscape and Wind River where she was responsible for the teams ensuring distributed enterprise application testing and monitoring (i.e.: making sure everything works flawlessly)....Read more

Amir Rozenberg
Perfecto Mobile

Concurrent Sessions

Director of product management Amir Rozenberg is responsible for core product strategy at Perfecto Mobile, the leading digital cloud and test automation company. Amir pioneered mobile quality practices at Perfecto to extend the service across the application lifecycle. He has extensive experience in the digital industry with expertise in areas...Read more

Anna Russo

Anna Russo is an ALM MVP specializing in ALM TFS Software Process consulting and training. Since 2008 Anna has worked with a variety of clients to improve their software quality and processes by properly implementing Microsoft Team Foundation Server, Test Manager, and Visual Studio tools. Anna applies hands on expertise...Read more


Rob Sabourin, P. Eng., has more than thirty-three years of management experience leading teams of software development professionals. A highly-respected member of the software engineering community, Rob has managed, trained, mentored, and coached hundreds of top professionals in the field. He frequently speaks at conferences and writes on software engineering,...Read more

KMS Technology

VP of testing services at KMS Technology, Adam Satterfield leads software testing and DevOps for this technology consulting and development firm. He is responsible for integrating manual and automated testing as well as DevOps strategy across the Atlanta and Ho Chi Minh City offices of KMS Technology, where nearly 700...Read more


Jennifer Scandariato serves as the test engineering director and leads the Women in Technology initiative at iCIMS. She has more than twenty-one years of experience in developing technical solutions to drive growth and profitability while increasing customer satisfaction through high quality and overall engineering effectiveness. Jennifer is a frequent keynote...Read more

Karen Schaefer

Concurrent Sessions

Calabrio’s quality assurance manager Karen Schaefer is responsible for reviewing processes and metrics to increase quality and reduce risk across Calabrio's product deployments. With twenty-five years of quality assurance and software testing experience, Karen applies her analytical and organizational talents to continually refine the testing approach to keep the QA...Read more


Craig Schwarzwald has more than a decade of professional scripting and automation experience. For the past six years he has focused on creating and maintaining the Selenium framework used by hundreds of testers, developers, and automation engineers at a large financial organization. Widely regarded as his company’s Selenium expert, Craig...Read more

TechWell Corp.

TechWell’s CIO and president of SQE Training, Mike Sowers has more than twenty-five years of practical experience as a global leader of internationally distributed test teams across multiple industries. Mike is a senior leader, skilled in working with both large and small organizations to improve their software development, testing, and...Read more


An engineer with a background in test and quality across multiple industries and various company sizes, Geordie Speake has been a member of technical teams focused on bringing quality products and solutions to customers both internal and external. From the test labs of a large aerospace company where software was...Read more

Tom Stiehm

Tom Stiehm is a 20 year veteran of the Information Technology industry. He has spent the past 10 years managing, designing and implementing software products and applications using agile software development methods. Prior to Coveros, Tom held a variety of CTO and architect positions at software development companies. Tom is...Read more

Equal Experts

Paul Stringer was given his first Mac in 1985—starting a lifelong obsession with technology and Macs. He’s programmed everything from hypercard to WebObjects, which he used in 2003 to develop one of the earliest mobile cloud services, Several million text messages later, these worlds collided with the launch of...Read more


Chief storyteller of The Three Pillars of Agile Testing and Quality, Mary Thorn is director of agile practices at Ipreo in Raleigh, NC. Mary has a broad agile and testing background that spans automation, data warehouses, and web-based systems in a wide variety of technologies and testing techniques. During her...Read more

Independent Consultant

Jim Trentadue has more than seventeen years of experience as a coordinator and manager in the software testing field. In his various career roles in testing, Jim has focused on test execution, automation, management, environment management, standards deployment, and test tool implementation. In the area of offshore testing, Jim has...Read more


Vincent Truong has eighteen years of hands-on experience in globalization quality engineering. He is a globalization quality engineering manager at VMware and has been managing the QE efforts for VMware products under the cloud management business unit (CMBU) for five years. He serves as a globalization program manager, helping drive...Read more

Alison Wade
TechWell Corp.

Women Who Test Sessions

Alison Wade is an accomplished executive dedicated to the business of software. For the past fifteen years, she has worked with industry leaders developing programs for software development and testing professionals.  She is the Program Chair for the Mobile Dev + Test and IoT Dev + Test conferences, and she...Read more

Vanderbilt University Medical Center

Jim Weaver is a principal developer and mentor at Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC). Jim has decades of experience building software products in a variety of industries, with a focus on agile practices and mentoring. He is a co-inventor of MyHealthAtVanderbilt, a VUMC patient web portal. Previously at ThoughtWorks, Jim...Read more

Quicken Loans

Hilary Weaver-Robb is a software quality architect at Detroit-based Quicken Loans. She is a mentor to her fellow QA team members, makes friends with developers, and helps teams level-up their quality processes, tools, and techniques. Hilary has always been passionate about improving the relationships between developers and testers, and evangelizes...Read more