Minnesota IT Symposium

September 28, 2016
DoubleTree Hilton, Bloomington

Interactive Breakout Sessions

Innovation, Leadership, Agility
Enterprise, Architecture, Hybrid Storage
Security, Infrastructure, & More!

Invaluable Networking Opportunities

Network, Connect &
Reconnect with Colleagues

Value & Convenience

Education & Resources
From Your Regional Peers

Executive Level Attendees
Companies Participating


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2016 Strategic Partners



Marc Kermisch

Redwing Shoes

Tim Thull

Medica Health Plans

Jim Jones

Great River Energy

Patton Fast

Regional CTO & Enterprise Architect

Kari Toft

CIO – SE MN Region

Kim Skanson

Cargill, Inc

Matt Ode

Thrify White Pharmacy

Garrett Gleason

VP, Financial, Affiliate, Corporate Technology Services
Thrivent Financial

Mike Rhodes

VP $pendwise Indirect Procurement

Richard Binger

Director, Data Center Services
Securian Financial

Brian Dahlin

University of MN

Mike Wasik

Sr Director of IT
Healthside Foods

Brian Kirchner

Director of Enterprise Architecture
GE Capital Americas

Patrick Jerich

Director, Global Infrastructure Services

Kory Nadeau

Director of Infrastructure & Security Services
Presbyterian Homes & Services

Lisa M Ward

Associate Director, IT Infrastructure
Upsher-Smith Laboratories, Inc

Andrea Markstrom

IT Director
Faegre & Benson

Lauri Petersen

Manager, Infrastructure & Project Services
Great River Energy

Pg Narayanan

Founder & CEO
SmiForce Inc

Craig Wilson

Director of IT
Winthrop & Weinstine, PA

Steve Thein

IS Manager
Federated Mutual Insurance

Brad Longerbone

Director of IT Enterprise Engineering
Maximus, Inc
Join Us At The 2016 Minnesota IT Symposium

September 28, 2016

At The DoubleTree Hilton, Bloomington


7:30am - | Attendee Check-In: Traditional Breakfast Buffet Served

Scrambled Eggs, Bacon and Sausage Links, Breakfast Potatoes, Chilled Juices, Fresh Seasonal Fruit, Assorted Muffins and Pastries, Preserves, Sweet Cream Butter, Freshly Brewed Regular and Decaffeinated Coffee and Assorted Herbal Teas

8:20am - Grand Ballroom | Welcome Message

Andrew Wittenborg

Director of Outreach & Member Engagement
8:30am - Grand Ballroom | Embracing a Digital-First Mentality at Cargill

Kim Skanson

Chief IT Operating Officer

For more than 150 years, Cargill has worked together with farmers and communities to provide food, agriculture, financial and industrial products and services worldwide.  Naturally, in 2016, innovation and modernization are key to staying competitive and relevant, and digitization – changing the what, where, and how Cargill operates – is critical.  Kim Skanson, a core member of the Global IT Leadership Team, will share the story of how the Global IT function is helping Cargill shift its mindset to innovate and grow in more modern and digital ways, in order to advance its work in the global marketplaces and economies where its businesses operate.

9:15am - | Networking Break
9:45am - | Breakout Sessions
9:45am - Veranda 1-2 | “When IT is Just Has to be Easy: Providing a Video Conferencing Solution to Pediatric Patients and Their Families to Remain Connected During Their Care.”
Sponsored by Pinnaca/Acano

Jason Albrecht

Manager, Patient & Family Interactive Services
University of Minnesota Health

Children and their families endure multiple separations during complex healthcare experiences. Children are often separated from their parents, siblings and school for extended periods. Parents are often separated from each other, their child’s care team, work and their community support. Mothers with critical care needs or those who have infants with critical care needs experience tremendous emotions when their babies are immediately transferred to a neonatal intensive care unit at a time when they cannot follow.  The University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital has pioneered the use of video conferencing technology to keep patients and their families connected. From complex to what seems as simple as it can get, learn from our journey as we continue to explore how to make the use of video connectivity simple, secure and available to families at times when they need each other most.

9:45am - Veranda 3-4 | Kiewit: The Digital Transformation of a $9B Construction Giant
sponsored by HPE/Aruba Networks

Rusty Holiday

Enterprise Architect, Security/Field Connectivity

Driving technology solutions across a 22,000-employee construction and engineering enterprise can be more than a little daunting. But Kiewit understands that embracing innovation is the key to becoming the best construction company in the world. Rusty Holiday, Enterprise Architect at Kiewit, will share his company’s journey through the initial phases of digital transformation and talk about how connecting devices (BYOD, MDM, Guest access), heavy equipment (Telematics, IoT, PLC’s), and ultimately people in often-remote greenfield environments, is already improving the business outcomes of a historically conservative and traditional business. Learn why Kiewit’s rapidly deployable outdoor wireless infrastructure is a vital foundation for the company’s line of business applications and hear examples of how new apps are streamlining previously paper-based processes with greater accuracy, efficiency, and speed – all of which improve productivity and allow Kiewit to complete projects on time and on budget. Holiday will also provide a glimpse into the future of digital transformation at one of the best construction companies in the world.

9:45am - Veranda 5-6 | Leveraging Adaptive Authentication and Behavioral Biometrics
sponsored by SecureAuth

Christine Mikolajczak

Sr Solutions Engineer

Despite millions spent each year on security, breaches still persist, and oftentimes compromised user credentials are used by attackers to move laterally within your network. How can you make the most of your existing security investments, while ensuring those who access your network are who they say they are? Join Chrstine Mikolajczak from SecureAuth as we discuss how to enhance your secure access control strategy with adaptive authentication. We’ll explore how using a layered approach with techniques like threat services, device recognition and behavioral biometrics can help detect intrusions, even attackers with valid credentials, without causing a burden to users.

9:45am - Veranda 7-8 | Trends in Data Lifecycle Management and Information Governance
sponsored by EMC

Brian Johnson

Account Manager
Doculabs, Inc

How do you purge your data? Are your data management practices in compliance with recordkeeping conventions and with legal standards? A recent survey from Doculabs unearthed some surprising findings about how organizations approach data lifecycle management. This meeting will host a discussion on the survey and discuss the impact on information governance and security, and offers recommendations for how to improve.

10:30am - | Networking Break
11:00am - | Breakout Sessions
11:00am - Veranda 1-2 | Journey to the B.I. Cloud
sponsored by Collier IT

Joan Stevens

Director, IT
United States Distilled Products

Hear about the journey a small company went on over several years evaluating options for BI tools and why they moved to a cloud version. Things we considered along the way: Should we use an OOTB solution? How much additional work will it take to implement this? What are the options available for cloud? This will also cover a demo of the solution implemented along with the successes and challenges we faced in our implementation.

11:00am - Veranda 3-4 | Encouraging “Shadow IT” as a Way to Innovate
sponsored by OutSystems

Garrett Gleason

VP, Business Solutions Team
Thrivent Church Solutions Group

Suppressing and attempting to control “Shadow IT” makes little business sense. The “IT” in “Shadow IT” stands for Information Technology! IT in any form, has the potential to create value! This session will help cast a light into the shadows and explore the why (…does shadow IT exist), what (…to do about shadow IT units), and how (…to go from it being negative to positive structure) you can benefit from Shadow IT in your company.

11:00am - Veranda 5-6 | The Criticality of Email Security
sponsored by Zixcorp

Al Dankovich

Director of Systems Engineering

The increase in data breaches and external threats has reminded us of the importance of securing emails. Organizations need to be confident that the millions of emails leaving their network each day are protected where necessary, whether sent from a desktop or from a mobile device. Implementing secure email solutions should increase productivity and mitigate risk without creating employee frustration. 

11:00am - Veranda 7-8 | Legal Issues Emerging From the Internet of Things

Ken Coleman

Warner, Norcross & Judd

Nate Steed

Sr Associate
Warner, Norcross & Judd

Experts estimate that by 2020 there will be 50 billion devices connected to the internet. The proliferation of the “Internet of things” – the network of connected objects with the ability to communicate and share data with each other– brings both untold benefits to businesses as well as significant security, privacy, and legal risks. Vulnerabilities in some of these internet-connected devices can be exploited to allow hackers to access and misuse personal information, or even cause harm to the device or the device’s user. In this session, we will give you an overview of the emerging legal issues and trends from the “Internet of things.”

11:45am - Minnesota Lunch Buffet Served

B.L.T. Salad, Chive Ranch Dressing, Macaroni and Cheese Salad, Peas and Ham, Pan Seared Walleye, Lemon Cream, Roasted Potato, Wild Rice Stuffed Chicken, Sage Cream, Medley of Broccoli, Cauliflower and Carrots

12:25pm - Grand Ballroom | Keynote Introduction

Kari Toft

CIO - SE MN Region
12:30pm - Grand Ballroom | 11 Secrets of Engaged Employees

Kevin Jones

Business Coach & International Speaker

Over 70% of the workforce is disengaged from their work; in other words they are there for the paycheck.  And although you may create great solutions and develop the best systems and technology, unless employees are engaged you will find that adoption of your solutions will be severely lacking.  Focusing on employee engagement may not seem like an IT responsibility, but without it too many initiatives will not meet expectations.  During this keynote you will be introduced to the 11 secrets that create engaged employees - ones that are ready to adopt your technology.

1:15pm - | Networking Break
1:45pm - | Breakout Sessions
1:45pm - Veranda 1-2 | Inspiring a Culture of Innovation in Your Company Through a Collaborative Work Environment

Lisa Ward

Director IT Infrastructure
Upsher-Smith Laboratories, Inc

Leah Schneider

Human Resources Associate Director
Upsher-Smith Laboratories, Inc

This session will focus on how one company has enabled the business to greater creativity and collaboration by co-locating cross-functional project teams.  Co-Locating cross functional departments is something companies have been doing for years and, therefore, not revolutionary.   However, what Upsher – Smith Laboratories decided to do was really shake things up by creating an adaptable and flexible work space, with a variety of un-assigned work areas, for core project team members.  This session will share how the HR, IT, and Facility management teams worked together to design the space, engage the project team members, and facilitate the change and culture movement to create an innovative environment that truly focuses on delivering business value quicker.

1:45pm - Veranda 3-4 | The Moneyball CIO - Learning the Science of IT Decision Making
sponsored by Info~Tech

Matt Mandich

Director, Innovation & Strategy

IT can often feel like an unwinnable game, with limited resources, changing priorities, multiple stakeholders and increased demands. Too often, IT leaders must make decisions with insufficient information and without knowing the true effect on the business.

Info-Tech’s framework removes the guesswork from what makes the business happy and predicts the impact of key decisions before they happen.
Info-Tech will walk you through the 3 real drivers of business satisfaction, and help IT leaders navigate a world in which:

  • Only 28% of Business Leaders are satisfied with the performance of IT
  • 67% of CIOs are not aligned with executives on the role of IT
1:45pm - Veranda 5-6 | "We’re not Google" – Attracting IT Talent in One of the Hottest IT Markets in the Country

Andre LaMere

Chief Human Resources Officer (Interim)

Most people don’t realize that there is more technology in a grocery store than most other retail establishments. On average, there are over 100 systems - from the not so obvious of wifi connected scales to the obvious checklanes, just to make sure that your milk is delivered, stocked, kept at the appropriate temperature, correctly dated, accurately scanned, replenished, and applicable coupons applied – all done in a way that is mostly invisible to the customer. What makes your business an exciting technology business and how do you harness that narrative to get applicants to clamor for jobs?

Once you’ve crystallized your employee value proposition for IT applicants, how is your workplace set up to appeal to various generations of workers? Do you have flexible schedules? Do you discuss purpose? Do employees have a good idea of career path? Do you think outside the box (e.g., hackathons, breakathons, etc.)

1:45pm - Veranda 7-8 | Are We Really Reducing Risk Exposure & Getting More Secure?
sponsored by ServiceNow

Brandon Reese

Solution Sales Consulting

Are you able to answer the question “Are you secure and are things getting better or worse?”  Security teams are inundated with alerts from multiple, siloed products and typically have manual processes and handoffs making it impossible to know what’s important, where to start and the current status of an incident or vulnerability.  Linking security and IT together can help organizations deliver more efficient security response, streamline remediation and clearly visualize security posture.  ServiceNow can extend the proven orchestration capabilities of the ServiceNow platform to security teams giving an organization a single platform for responding to security incidents and vulnerabilities – and ultimately reduce their risk.

2:30pm - | Networking Break
2:45pm - | Breakout Sessions
2:45pm - Veranda 1-2 | Latest Trends in Security

Bryce Austin

Leading Voice on Cybersecurity Issues
Nationally Recognized Public Speaker

Jim O'Conner


Scott Singer

PaR Systems

Barry Caplin

Fairview Health Systems

Security continues to be something that is top of mind for all IT executives.   The struggle continues to be “how tight one should lock down information and still allow people to get their work done?” as well as “how much investment is enough and where is the threshold of return verses risk?”    Join us as we discuss the latest trends in security. This session will cover:

  • Federal security requirements
  • Legal trends in data security
  • Best practices for protection
  • Effective integration of security awareness programs in a changing threat landscape
  • Metrics used for continuous improvement in a security program
2:45pm - Veranda 3-4 | Building Diversity Within Your Company Utilizing Local Resources

Marie Larson

Industry Relations Manager
City of Minneapolis Employment Training

Becky Ryan

Sr Manager for the Enterprise Support Centers

Otto Doll

City of Minneapolis

TechHire MSP has trained 318 people in accelerated IT programs (April 2016).  Over 200 graduates have been placed in full-time positions, (February 2016).  Graduates are 32% women; 24% minorities. Employers range widely across industry and sectors.   C.H. Robinson, the City of Minneapolis, Wells Fargo, Target, the Nerdery, G5 Solutions, Allina Health, and Ceridian are utilizing the program to fill positions.  

To assist businesses with aligning hiring strategies, the City of Minneapolis Employment and Training recently developed a Guide to Inclusive Hiring for employers interested in evolving their hiring systems and practices. Employers use the guide to proactively plan for diverse talent acquisition by tapping into proven strategies and tactics. The guide is currently available on the City of Minneapolis web site, at http://www.ci.minneapolis.mn.us/www/groups/public/@cped/documents/webcontent/wcmsp-179539.pdf

Attend this session to hear from the companies who have successfully developed diversity programs in their companies

2:45pm - Veranda 5-6 | Big Data Analytics – Why Getting Started is often a Difficult Challenge

Keith Johnson

Sr Data Platform Engineer
Data Strategy

Since the beginning of the Big Data buzz (~2011), companies struggle to collect, understand, and leverage not just the data they produce and own, but also the enormous amounts of publicly available data. Executives will overhear chatter about Machine Learning and Predictive Analytics, and immediately want their businesses driven towards better decision making and discovering exciting trends. However, evolving raw data to insights is rarely a straightforward process, and getting started is a daunting task. By following one company’s journey through a customer’s requirement to mine and analyze immense data sets, this session will illuminate many of the significant challenges companies will face when initiating Big Data Analytics. The lifecycle of the project will be shared, from finding the right resources with the talent and skills to perform data analytics, through identification of the data sets required and the decisions made to model, store and manage it, to the tools and platforms utilized to process and expose the data and eventually verify its usability.

2:45pm - Veranda 7-8 | The CIO Role on the Business Leadership Team
sponsored by First National Technology Solutions

Gary Acromite

Visual Farms

For several years now, technology leadership has been undergoing radical changes in terms of the relationship with their technology teams, but more importantly, what role they play on the larger executive team leading the strategic and tactical operations of the business.  It’s clear the traditional CIO role, with its traditional set of experiences and skills, is going through a transformation.  Marketplace technologies and service offerings have reached not only a new level of sophistication in delivery and scale, but also the ability to achieve economies-of-scale not attainable by individual IT departments.  Moreover, the individual technical disciplines formerly part of the CIO leadership skillset have simultaneously become more complex but also more prevalent as a service in the marketplace.  And now more than ever, business functional leaders are making technology purchasing decisions with a couple of clicks and a credit card number – often bypassing the IT department altogether.  These factors, and other organizational leadership dynamics have called into question the relevance and role for future CIOs.

This session will explore where this evolving condition is headed, provide some real-life examples for amplification, and offer some practical techniques and perspectives about the future role of the CIO and how individuals can begin thinking differently about their future.

3:30pm - | Networking Break
3:40pm - Grand Ballroom | Innovation Panel Introduction
3:45pm -Grand Ballroom | Creating Innovation Within Your Company

Andrew Wittenborg

Director of Outreach & Member Engagement

Elwin Loomis

Sr Director, Store of the Future

Garrett Gleason

VP, Business Solutions Team
Thrivent Church Solutions Group

James Rogers

Chair, Mayo Clinic Ventures
Deputy Director, Center for Regenerative Medicine

This session will feature a panel of executives that will share their experiences around how they have approached innovation in their companies.  Too many times innovation is discussed in more of a research based way “This is what you need to do in your organization to create and do innovation”.   In this session, we will move beyond research and share experiences of how to executives have jumpstarted innovation in their companies and the benefits you will receive in doing so. 

Examples of questions that will be address:

  • How do you create a culture of innovation and move beyond “this is the way we have always done this”?
  • How do you find the “good ideas”?
  • Once you find them how do you prioritize them?
  • How do you determine which of these you would like to turn into pilot projects?
  • How do you analyze the data from the pilot program?
  • It is not as easy as having an analyst review the project and come up with numbers justifying things, etc.
  • What resources are people using to learn from one another?
  • Something other than industry research groups?
  • What creative things are you doing to justify investing in innovation and how are you carving out budget dollars?
  • Are you partnering with the startup community as a way to further innovation?
  • What are examples of innovation from concept to reality in organizations?
4:30pm - Grand Ballroom | Closing Remarks
4:35pm - Networking Reception

Enjoy this complimentary cocktail reception featuring an open bar, hors d’oeuvres and conversation. Make this an important element of your attendance to the Summit. The ability to network and collaborate with your peers in an open and no-hype environment will prove to provide long lasting value to your key business initiatives moving forward.

Join Us At The 2016 Minnesota IT Symposium

September 28, 2016

At The DoubleTree Hilton, Bloomington


Title Sponsor


Platinum Sponsors


Silver Sponsors


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7800 Normandale Blvd • Minneapolis,MN 55439 • ph. 952-835-7800


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