2017 PMI Silicon Valley Chapter Symposium

"Creating Business Value Through Project Leadership"



Keynote Speakers


Mark Morgan, Founder of StratEx Advisors, Inc.

Leadership for Strategic Execution

If management is doing things right and leadership is doing the right things, then strategic execution is doing the right things right. The imperative for project managers is to know why their project is the right thing to do so that they can lead their team effectively toward delivering the value intended. In doing so, project managers must develop:


  1. A working knowledge of value creation
  2. Mental flexibility
  3. A strong power equation
  4. Adaptive communication

ExecutingYourStrategyMark’s presentation uses well-researched models backed up by concrete examples derived from work with over 75 organizations. It is designed to cover material and examples that are out of the ordinary and provide immediately useful information for the attendees. A group facilitation app will be used to collect audience input.

Mark Morgan has more than 30 years experience working with individuals, teams within over 75 organizations helping them improve their ability to develop and execute strategy by doing the right projects right. His focus is first on doing the right projects based on the strategy, goals and metrics of the company. Given a set of the right projects his focus is on doing the projects right using just enough project management process to be able to effectively manage the project to deliver value. Mark is the lead author of two books,
Executing Your Strategy (Harvard 2008) and Executing Your Business Transformation (Jossey Bass 2010).

ExecutingYourBusinessTransformationMark is also a founder of the Stanford Advanced Project Management Program.







ZacharyWongZachary Wong Ph.D., DABT, Recently retired Senior Manager at Chevron

The Three Critical Human Factors in Project Leadership and Performance

Human Factors are the underlying motivators and de-motivators of human behavior. They are the reasons why you do the things you do and why a project succeeds or fails. To manage and motivate the right behaviors, project leaders must be able to look beneath the surface, understand the root drivers of behaviors and leverage the “right” set of human factors to maximize organizational and team performance. Human behavior is a complex and challenging aspect of project management and rarely do we have the models, tools and strategies to manage it well. Moreover, there are probably hundreds of human factors in project management but which ones matter the most in project leadership?

For the first time, Dr. Zachary Wong will reveal the three most critical human factors in project leadership and organizational performance. These critical human factors were researched and identified by Dr. Wong through thirty years of project management experience in industry and twenty five years of teaching at U.C. Berkeley and U.C. Davis

HumanFactorsZachary Wong is an accomplished instructor, facilitator, trainer and senior manager in business and project management for over thirty years. He is an “Honored Instructor” at U. C. Berkeley Extension and Adjunct Professor at U. C. Davis. He has held senior management positions at Chevron in research and technology, strategic planning, business analyses, and health, environment and safety. He is an active consultant in organizational effectiveness, leadership training and team development and an author of two popular books in project management, Human Factors in Project Management: Concepts, Tools and Techniques for Inspiring Teamwork and Motivation and Personal Effectiveness in Project Management: Tools, Tips and Strategies to Improve Your Decision-Making, Motivation, Confidence, Risk-Taking, Achievement and Sustainability.

PersonalEffectivenessZach teaches three highly recommended PM courses at U. C. Berkeley Extension: “Project Leadership and Building High Performing Teams,” “Advanced Human Factors: Personal Effectiveness and Influence” and “Essential People Management Skills for Project Leaders.”






Tom Pavelko, Program Director at Lockheed Martin

How to Save a Program or Project That Is Failing and Make a Good One the Best It Can Be

The US economy thrives on the development of new products, systems, and processes, and usually one or more creative individuals create them. Unfortunately, about one out of every four development programs fail, and sixty-five percent of those that survive do not achieve all their goals. When the decision is made to implement an invention. the leadership culture must realign.

In my many years at a major aerospace company leading the successful recovery of troubled development programs, I experienced firsthand what causes programs to stop achieving major performance, cost, schedule, and quality commitments. I refined ways to evaluate these programs, reorganize them to achieve their commitments and resurrect the morale of the team. I led these teams to enter a heightened state of productivity I refer to as being “on step”.

My presentation reveals the human needs and abilities that need be addressed to bring a program or project team to their maximum performance. It highlights how to plan and execute to capitalize on these traits. I identify the essential fundamentals for effective program turnaround, including assigning each program responsibility to one person, capitalizing on face-to-face communication, recruiting problem solvers, establishing team commitments, using team accomplishments to propel high team morale, and more. This presentation includes guidance applicable to all program or project genres, including nonprofit work.

ProjectandProgramTurnaroundThomas Pavelko worked 37 years for Lockheed Aircraft and now Lockheed Martin. He started as an engineer organizing and leading teams to develop embedded computer systems that performed critical flight controls and data reduction functions. He was promoted to the levels of System Engineering Manager and Program Director. He reported to a wide variety of divisions including, Satellites, Missile, R&D, Electronics, Propulsion, Advanced Astronautics, Commercial Space, Human Spaceflight and Skunk Works. During his career, he was assigned to assist large commercial and government programs in trouble. For some he became the new Program Manager. All the programs he led were completed successfully. Author of Project and Program Turnaround, Taylor & Francis, 2017, PMI February Book on the Month


ThomasLukeJarocki Thomas Luke Jarocki, Managing Director Emergence One International, Ltd.

“Big Picture” Project Leadership: Laying the Foundation for Organizational Adoption, Utilization, and Business Value Creation

As project professionals, we have a responsibility to help ensure our projects create value for our customers. And as any seasoned project manager knows, projects are funded not simply to be delivered “on-time, within budget and according to scope” but to drive the necessary organizational changes that create business value. However, for the project manager to be solely responsible for the creation of business value is a tall order; one that cannot be accomplished if the project manager works in a vacuum focusing solely on the mechanics of project management.

In this dynamic presentation, Thomas will show attendees how to identify and address the numerous value enhancing opportunities present in each distinct phase of the project life cycle. From the initial opportunity assessment through supporting, sustaining, and enhancing the long term value of the initiative, attendees will learn how to create and leverage the necessary foundation for long term business value.

ProjectAndChangeManagementThomas Luke Jarocki is one of the leading authorities when it comes to integrating organizational change proficiency with project management rigor and structure. His groundbreaking book, “The Next Evolution – Enhancing and Unifying Project and Change Management” is considered by many to be the definitive guide on the subject. Thomas has logged over 25,000 hours working with various project teams across the United States, Latin America, Europe, and the Middle East. His influential, practical approaches to managing people, projects, and change have been recognized and embraced by corporate leaders, professional organizations, government agencies, and project professionals worldwide. After holding senior level positions with both Oracle Consulting and KPMG/BearingPoint, Thomas is currently the Managing Director at Emergence One International, a San Francisco based consulting and training firm. Clients have included Apple, Motorola, Chevron, McDonalds, HP, McKesson, Plantronics, Cisco, DIRECTV, PepsiCo, and Microsoft

Thomas was the opening keynote speaker at the 2013 Silicon Valley Symposium, and he is also one of the select few chosen and sponsored by the PMI global organization to regularly deliver 1, 2, and 3 day workshops at PMI SeminarsWorld® events worldwide.

Track Speakers



Chintan Singh Ahuja, Operations Program Manager, Boston ScientificDeveloping Product Lifecycle Management Culture and Processes through Project Management

This presentation encompasses my journey of projects and initiatives that created strong value to the business and customers. At Varian Medical Systems I lead two initiatives that set the foundation and established processes for very successful new products that the company has launched in the last five years. I was project manager of creating a product portfolio selection and management process that helped select new product ideas that have become very successful medical devices for fighting cancer and therefore have added immense value to the business, customers and patients.

Additionally I was project manager for establishing a robust process at the other end of the product lifecycle, i.e. retirement or phase-out, which some industries also call it as Product End of Life. Systematically retiring your products from the market and timing them with launch of their next generations takes a lot of discipline and courage. Chintan’s presentation summarizes the challenges, opportunities, and frustrations of this work. It will provide important lessons to project managers and make them think of this profession outside the norm, and give them a renewed sense of energy by listening how methodologies and principles of project management can add non-traditional value to businesses.

Born and raised in New Delhi, India, Chintan has lived in the San Francisco Bay Area since 1999. From 2007 until present I have worked in various project and program management roles in the medical device industry. Due to my keen interest in keeping things around me organized and always creating and following a plan, I consider myself as a project manager by heart and soul since a very young age, even though I understood and followed the profession of Project Management later in life. The most successful attribute of my career as a project manager has been that I have had the opportunity to apply project management skills on very unique and organizational change oriented time critical projects in the medical device industry. My presentation will be well aligned with the symposium theme “Creating Business Value through Project Leadership”.



John Carter, Co-Founder & Principal, TCGen, Inc. - Case Studies: Agile Transformations to Develop Tangible Products Quickly

One of the fastest ways to build business value is to accelerate cycles of learning through rapid product launches and customer engagement. But using Agile methods for tangible products is not simple or straightforward. Despite the gains in Agile software methodologies, those delivering tangible products, for example mobile telephone handsets & medical devices, are still living in a waterfall world. There are certainly different challenges between software and tangible products, but there is also a lot to learn (and apply) from the success of companies that have implemented Agile techniques in their development process.

You’ll learn via case studies of real world application about how some of the most effective Agile methodologies have been adapted to help teams take on the “hardware-specific” challenges of leveraging Agile methods in system development that includes: supplier partnerships, remote teams, prototyping – all elements that some think can only be managed in a waterfall development framework. We will also talk about the risk elements and possible traps that these organizations discovered and ultimately avoided, so you can know what works and how to avoid pitfalls so participants will gain insight into how to implement this in their own organization.

John Carter has been a CEO, founder and inventor. As Principal of TCGen Inc., he has advised technology firms such as Apple, Cisco, Dolby, HP, IBM, and Xerox on strategy and operations. He currently serves on the Board of Directors of Cirrus Logic (CRUS). John has raised private equity to execute a successful rollup in the Consumer Electronics sector and he has held the positions of CTO and Chief Engineer. John is the co-inventor of the BOSE Noise Cancelling Headphones and shares the original patent with Dr. Bose.

He has been a member of the faculty at Case Western’s Executive program, and an invited speaker at MIT and Stanford University. John has served as an advisor to the International Association of Product Development, the Gordon Institute and The Management Roundtable. He earned his MS in electrical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a BS in engineering from Harvey Mudd College in Claremont, CA. John has extensive speaking experience, and has been a frequent invited speaker for dozens of companies, conferences, universities and project management groups.



Kétan Davé MS, MBA, PgMP, Managing Director. Professional PM Consulting & TrainingDeploying Emerging Technologies and New Products - A Program Management Perspective;

In Silicon Valley, the land of innovation, developing and deploying emerging technologies and new products is a norm. Every such initiative starts as a project or a program, no matter what it is called. Many of such innovations will give birth to a startup or even a new industry, just like it has been in the past. Recent waves of emerging technologies, including advances in semiconductors, computer hardware, software, networking, storage, internet, alternate energy, bio-tech, and life sciences fueled innovation and growth across all industries changing the world as we know today. It brought us revived Apple, Microsoft, Dell, Amazon, Facebook, Google, eBay, Tesla, Genentech, Celgene, Biogen, Amgen, and thousands of small and large companies. These companies continue to innovate and enable more breakthrough technologies and bring new products to the market impacting our everyday life. Development of such emerging technologies and new products always start as a project or a program before they are operationalized for the mass production.

We are again at the crossroads of another technological revolution. Emerging technologies of the recent past have become core technologies of the day to provide platform to innovate the next generation of emerging technologies and new products. Major breakthroughs in many other fields are driving further development in quantum cloud, robotics, artificial intelligence, virtual reality, liquid biopsy, stem cell, and DNA sequencing & editing, to name a few. Leaders who understand these technologies, their applications, and implications will be able to develop and introduce more innovative products and services. The objective of this presentation is to provide a program management perspective on:

  • What it takes to deploy emerging technologies and innovative new products
  • How to deploy a simple yet powerful model for effective execution applicable to both strategic enterprise programs or tactical agile projects

Kétan Davé, a bay area resident for more than 20 years has three professional passions - Learn, Apply, and Share Knowledge. Ketan is an independent consultant with 25+ years of diverse experience across business and IT domains helping companies of all sizes to deploy emerging technologies, innovative products, and transform their business. For more than 7 years, in his free time, Ketan has taught PMP certification preparation, creating high performance teams, and effective negotiations classes at UCSC Extension.



Aimee Degnan PMP, CSM, CSPO, SCPM, CEO and Co-Founder, Hook 42, Inc.Healing a Broken Project

Our team adopted a very broken web commerce migration project in need of drastic recovery. A previous agency had worked for four years with no obvious progress and the client looked for our help to finish the work. Using project and process management techniques, our team helped work through the mess of mid-process deliverables, the client’s lack of trust, strained budget, and project fatigue to heal the broken project.

Aimee’s presentation will explore successfully using a combination of process improvement techniques (Six Sigma-type work) and project management techniques for this case study.

For over 20 years, Aimee has been leading large enterprise projects as a Technical Architect, Project, and Program manager. She has lead successful teams within many verticals, including healthcare, the entertainment industry, and the public sector. Aimee pulls from the multiple methodologies to cater project management practices that will fit each client’s business culture and each project’s needs. In 2012, she co-founded Hook 42, a web design and development team specializing in Enterprise Content Management software, with a primary focus on the Drupal technology. She is currently writing the “Drupal 8 Multilingual Sites” book.



Anup Deshpande PMP, PMI-ACP, CSP, CSM, SAFe-SPC, Sr. Director at CyberSource, a Visa Company—< i>Create a Value Delivery Office (VDO) for Extreme Business Agility

Does your organization strive to achieve laser focus on planning the right set of projects and delivering at a predictable pace? Do you want to learn from the successes (and failures) of Extreme Agile Implementation at a Corporate to attain a sustainable business model? Then hope isn’t a plan! It takes more than a year to get in to a regular rhythm with about 1,000 people interacting with the model. If you want to learn directly from the people who’ve made it work, this session is for you.

Anup Deshpande is a Sr. Director of Portfolio Management at CyberSource, a Visa company. He also currently serves as a Member, Board of Directors at Large at PMI San Francisco Bay Area Chapter. He is a Mentor, an Agile Coach and a Trainer and has over 22 years of worldwide program experience. He worked at Yahoo! for several years, among many other medium size organizations. He has managed co-located as well as distributed teams from different parts of the world. His Portfolio and Program Management experience includes one of the world’s largest payments platform, Data Analytics for Petabytes of data, Search experiments for the 2nd largest Search Engine in the world, SaaS based Email Marketing, Web Analytics, Meeting management, Insurance products, manufacturing and Smart-grid capabilities.

Anup served as 2012 President for the PMI® Silicon Valley Chapter. Among other roles, he has performed as VP of Programs and Advisor to the chapter President for several years.



Zul Helal, PMP, AIA, LEED AP, Founder, www.leadershipforquality.orgQuick Leadership Tools for Top-Notch Project Managers

In project management, the project is a temporary endeavor and it delivers a product at the closing. Although the project is gone at the end but what stays behind is the quality throughout the lifecycle of the product. It is very interesting that quality is still a mystery and typically referred to as the level of workmanship. However, if you look into it deeply, you will see that it also includes the project’s scope, schedule and cost- the risk triplet.

Quick leadership tools or QLT can help you demystify quality and make it the top priority. In this presentation I will tell a success story and ponder upon these tools and their effective use to help you become a top notch project manager. Zul will use the construction sector and quality as the knowledge area to demonstrate how quick leadership tools works.

Zul is a program, design, and construction strategist carrying two decades of experience in infrastructure, educational, workplace and leisure facilities. He is a licensed architect in California and the founder of www.leadershipforquality.org blog site focused on construction quality



Skyler Holloway, MSCE, Data Center Construction Program Manager, FacebookManaging B-Players to A-Level Results

Undoubtedly at some point in your career you will need to work with others who are not high-performing or up to your standards. How you choose to handle this will have specific impacts on 1) the team’s performance/project outcome, 2) your personal reputation, and 3) the interpersonal relationship in place. This session will present tools and offer candid advice from experience to help maximize the outcomes of this common situation.

As part of Facebook's Data Center Special Projects team, Skyler Holloway helps design, build, and operate the most efficient and cutting-edge infrastructure in the world. In this capacity. He is responsible for programs within Facebook's existing data center footprint and build-outs of collocated facilities worldwide. In addition, Skyler supports infrastructure for Facebook’s Connectivity Lab. Holloway has a Masters of Civil Engineering from Stanford University.



Tom Kendrick, PMP, MBA, MSEE, Retired Program Director, UC Berkeley ExtensionCrowd Control: Successfully Leading Projects Even When You Lack Formal Authority

Project leaders these days directly manage few (or none) of the people on their projects. There are many techniques that a project leader can use in cross-functional environments to control projects, and Tom’s presentation will explore ideas useful to both novice and experienced project managers. He will provide examples for using Project processes, Influencing skills, and Metrics collected from experienced project leaders, showing how to successfully lead virtual, outsourced, and matrix teams.

Tom Kendrick is author of five books on project management, including Managing Complex Programs (2016). He regularly speaks on program, project, and risk management. Tom has over 40 years of worldwide PM experience, including 20 years with Hewlett Packard and work for Visa, DuPont, and General Electric. Tom has a BSEE from Princeton and an MBA from the Wharton School at Penn. He is past president and ongoing volunteer for the PMI Silicon Valley Chapter.



Vincy Li, Global Program Manager, Hardware Innovation Group, Jabil, Inc.Valuable Leadership Lessons Learned from a Global Service Provider

In all projects, it is the people who deliver results. This presentation gathers anecdotal evidence from actual situations, success stories, methodologies, and great ideas from some of Jabil’s most experienced leaders. The lessons point to a leadership style that has been tested and tried over many years in a global manufacturing environment. What emerges as the core finding of this research is that successful leaders in Jabil have their attention and focus on developing and serving their respective teams.

Vincy Li is a Global Program Manager working at Jabil, Inc. a global contract manufacturing firm. She has successfully delivered consumer electronics products from conception to market. Li currently works in the Hardware Innovation Group, specializing in research and development.



Haziel Matias, PMP, MBAThe Taming of the New Shrew: Working with IT Professionals

IT Professionals (software engineers, systems analysts, data analysts, systems developers, technical specialists, project managers/leads, and infrastructure support personnel) have evolved over time and are gaining recognition, clout, and influence (not to mention affluence).

IT Professionals are likely to develop varied attitudes in their field disciplines and may be difficult to work with. (One day a colleague grabbed Haziel’s request for security documents and threw it in a trash can. She was too short to punch him in the face…) IT Professionals are just humans; and each person is unique and different. However, there seem to be general types of IT professionals that can be categorized into groups. This presentation will focus on working with them successfully.

As an advocate of "Kaizen" continuous improvement, Haziel is all for continuous learning; searching for knowledge, taking on new challenges as opportunities and continuously improving her professional skills. She has taught Project Management since 2005. Haziel has 18 years of experience in software application development and systems implementation projects, including project ranging from small Data Store, Data Warehouse development and implementation to more complex Finance, Payroll & Human Resources, and an ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) effort that replaced all the functioning legacy systems. As an Information Technology professional, she has had many different roles and responsibilities: as a programmer, systems analyst, trainer, software security officer, and Project Manager. She is a member of PMI and MPUG (the Microsoft Project User Group).



Richard Mazzarella PMP, Project Manager at Pragiti, Inc.Low Resistance - High Impact Release Planning for Agile-Scrum Projects

A frequent roadblock to the thorough adoption of Agile/Scrum practices is the production of a project team’s “Release Plan”. Translating the project’s requirements into a Release Plan, assigning resources to the sprints comprising the plan, and monitoring the plan’s execution can be formidable challenge to organizations struggling to adopt Scrum practices.

    This presentation will focus on organic, easy-to-adopt MS Excel-based planning tools that:
  • Avoid points-of-resistance from Agile/Scrum participants as they contribute to and refine the Release Plan
  • Provide an understandable mapping of high level plans to detailed Release Plans
  • Provide a foundation for the Agile/Scrum team’s performance measurement and improvement during project execution

Richard is a project manager with extensive experience in the eCommerce, medical device, retail, semiconductor, and aerospace industries. His contributions to the organizations he serves has been to transform chaotic work place environments into high-performing environments.



Joe Milner, PMP, CSP, MBA, Senior Manager of PMO and Continuous Improvement at inContactThe Importance of Ritual in Project Management

Good project managers make extensive use of formalized ceremonies to build shared team mentality, create a sense of formal decision making at key project lifecycle junctures, provide structure around process adherence, and impart a sense of importance to project milestones. Millennia of human evolution have engrained the need for ceremony in human endeavors, and by using the psychology of formal ceremonies we can tap into that human history to drive project success. In addition to running a PMO, Joe Milner is also a Freemason and has found the psychology of formal ceremonies to have profound overlaps with project management.

Joe Milner is a Senior Manager of PMO and Continuous Improvement at inContact. Joe is a PMO leader with extensive experience driving executive level projects with a team of dedicated senior project managers. Past key accomplishments include acting as the principle project manager on multiple merger and acquisition projects, including a $940M software company acquisition, organizing and running international software development efforts, building and leading new PMO offices, and launching a Project Management Center of Excellence. Joe has worked in the health care, public safety, communications, and retail industries. Joe has previously presented at the Agile Roots SLC conference, and the Product Camp Utah conference. He holds a BS in CS and an MBA, and is PMP and CSP certified.



Avinash Patil, Master of Technology, CSM, Staff Technical Program Manager - Portfolio & Program Management at VMWARE—Dealing with Challenges of Successfully Delivering a Complex Global Scale Business Transformation Program

Avinash’s presentation is based on his experience successfully leading and turning around a very complex business transformation program that was launched to integrate EDS (Electronics Data Systems) into HP (Hewlett Packard).

This program was very complex spread across all HP businesses, 200 people working on it in 20 different countries. This program had failed to deliver any software for 2 years when Avinash was hired to turn it around. He completely transformed the way program was planned, tracked and executed This presentation will explore how it was successfully delivered.

Avinash has 20-plus years of experience in managing very complex global PMO’s, portfolios, programs & projects in enterprise & consumer products and services, and has worked in wide variety of domains: SaaS, mobile Apps, mission critical computing, CyberSecurity. He has worked at VMWARE, Cisco Systems, and HP. Avinash has a Master of Technology degree from Mysore University, India. He is also a Stanford Certified Program Manager, Certified Scrum Master, Certified Scrum Product Owner, Certified SaFE practitioner and Kanban practitioner.



Sreedhar Potti, PMP, CSM, ITIL, ITSM Consultant with Kaiser PermanenteA Dynamic Risk Assessment & Notification Process Methodology

One of the critical steps in any IT project execution phase is to deploy code. Code deployment in an enterprise is becoming increasingly complex due to increased urgency and other factors. To ensure change deployment success, it is necessary to continuously evaluate, identify and address risks in a timely manner during code deployment life cycle. In his presentation Sreedhar will outline a dynamic and configurable risk assessment process to better manage this.

Sreedhar Potti has 20 years of experience in Service Delivery, Product & Program Management in IT organizations in Bay Area. He is currently working as a Solution Consultant with Kaiser Permanente, Pleasanton, CA. He is PMI member since 2004. He is a certified PMP, certified Scrum Master (CSM), ITIL certified.



Ian Rajczi, Incubation Coach at GE DigitalCultural Evolution in GE to Support Digital Transformation

GE is transforming from an industrial company into a Digital Industrial company, in its pursuit of becoming top 10 software supplier. This transformation has required changes to the way software is managed, and after a year of experimenting all over the world, GE is now rolling out a new way to work with software. Ian was an integral part of the development and the deployment of the new software methodology, and he will share his journey and results with you.

Born in Texas, Ian resided in Germany and was raised primarily in the Bay Area. His tech/corporate parents raised him to be ambitious. He got his first IT job at 14 and has been working ever since. Ian delivered software seen in the new S-Class Mercedes, worked for a financial startup helping nonprofits, and has even worked for a top-secret government department. He graduated early from his CS program at UC San Diego and took a job in an accelerated leadership program with General Electric. Now finished, he is now transforming the way GE Digital does software every day across the world.



Rekha Rao, Technical Program Manager, Domain Experts CorporationLeadership Methods – Unique Approach to Agile Transformation

Agile transformation was a key factor for American Express in 2013 as they were moving towards Digital transformation. In Rekha’s portfolio there was a lot of resistance and push back from the senior staff, who wanted to continue using waterfall methods. She came up with the unique idea of using Agile Innovation games to help reduce the resistance. Her approach used a wide variety of agile games to initiate serious work—in a very fun and relaxed atmosphere. This removed a lot of stress while employees were learning and adapting to something new.

Rekha will summarize her successful journey in adaptting agile methodologies using these unique and fun techniques. Within a short span of a year, they had 60% of all projects using agile, and the numbers continued to grow. Rekha is a dynamic Project Manager, Scrum master, and Business analyst with over 18 years’ experience in Program and Project management. She has worked with Fortune 500 companies and large organizations including American Express, Global Business Travel and FedEx. One of her key skills is in collaborating with IT and business partners to develop roadmaps that helped increase the level of agile management maturity across the enterprise. She has received accolades for initiating a new collaboration between PMI India and PMI Memphis. Her name was published in the Memphis business newspaper in March 2013 for successfully establishing this relationship as both the chapters reaped benefits from this collaboration.



Obaidur Rashid, Vice President of Engineering, CA TechnologiesLeadership Patterns - Lessons Every Leader Learns the Hard Way

What does it take to succeed as a leader? Years of experience have taught Obaidur that there are no cookie cutter approaches to leadership or management. Nevertheless, one can develop a set of principles over time that can guide leaders through this perilous journey.

In his talk he will share some of those principles, best practices and tips that can help engineering leaders avoid the pitfalls and deliver outstanding results. You will learn the art and science of leading that will add to your toolset, give you an edge over others, and provide you the foundation for delivering exceptional value in a constantly changing world.

Obaidur Rashid is currently the head of Engineering for the CA PPM (Clarity) product at CA Technologies. Before CA, he led engineering for Taleo Business Edition, the #1 cloud-based talent management suite of applications for the mid-market at Oracle/Taleo. Prior to that, he served as the Director of Engineering at StarCite, where he was responsible for all application development. Obaidur started his career at Oracle, where he moved up to the role of an Architect and led key strategic initiatives.

He has over 18 years of experience in software development. He has built highly scalable web/mobile applications/platforms across multiple domains. OB is an evangelizer of agile practices and has repeatedly built high performance teams onshore and offshore. He is also a regular speaker at industry events.



Jose Solera, MBA, Chief Information Officer at LISITransforming Insurance IT

Technology leaders can enable corporate transformations. Faced with 1990s technology and methods plus dramatic industry and competitive threats, Jose led the transformation of the IT organization, inspiring the transformation of the entire corporation. From ad hoc, waterfall-like methodology, to Kanban and Scrum Agile approaches; from on premise (fat) client-server solutions to cloud-based, SaaS-enabled solutions; from HIPPO/loudest voice to value-driven prioritization; from technology as an after-thought to a business enabler. Jose will explore the lessons he learned in accomplishing these transformations in less than two years.

Jose Solera has his MBA from Cornell University and is a United States Military Academy (West Point) graduate. He has over 25 years of experience in technology leadership. Jose is currently the CIO of LISI, a general agency in the California medical insurance market. While he is responsible for the Information Technology and Solutions needed by the company, he is focusing on transforming the organization through technology and business process reengineering. Prior to LISI, Jose worked in various director-level roles with Railinc (railroad data), Symantec, Intel, and Accenture. Jose was PMI Silicon Valley Chapter president in 2006



Ahmet Taspinar, PMP, MBA, MS, Director of Project Management Services at MacDonald-Bedford, LLCForty Years of Creating Value with Project Management

Ahmet has worked on more than 80 projects in various capacities since his immigration to the United States in 1973. Many of those projects were headed for failure, when he and a handful of colleagues were assigned to save the projects from overrunning their schedules and financial budgets, and causing irreparable damage to the reputation of the managing organization.

The high rate of success attained in these endeavors was attributable for the most part to the employment of the PMI processes, which Ahmet has championed since 1979, when he was promoted to being responsible for the success of projects in a management capacity. In this presentation Ahmet will explain his experiences with some of these successes that have been possible by his use of the PMI philosophy for managing projects.

Ahmet N. Taspinar is a management consultant providing project management training and consulting services to utilities, educational institutions, engineering/construction, banking, telecommunications and information technology development industries. He is the principal and owner of mbpNet, and Director of Project Management Services at MacDonald-Bedford, firms that specialize in assisting organizations to structure and employ the processes that bring efficiencies and maximum return on investment. Ahmet has been an active member of PMI, since 1977, serving as officer and president of numerous PMI chapters in New England, Texas, California, Mexico and Turkey. He received his PMP certification in 1991, and was a Registered Education Provider for many years. He holds an MS in Civil Engineering from Harvard University and an MBA from Northeastern University.



Pattie Vargas Coach and Trainer, The Vargas GroupLeadership: The New Management Reality

In an environment where the workforce may range from age 18 to 75, where work is typically accomplished by teams rather than individuals, and where communication must be as agile as the changing business dynamics, the need for a new kind of leader emerges.

Today’s Project Leaders find that relational skills and strong social intelligence are emerging as “must-have’s” in the behavioral skills inventory. Organizations that cultivate and value these competencies will see an improvement in productivity and profitability as they neutralize the time-wasters that can consume a manager’s time.

Pattie Vargas is a speaker, coach and trainer with a proven track record in motivating organizations and individuals to achieve greater success and improved interpersonal relationships. Pattie’s areas of expertise include behavioral and organizational change, leadership development, team building and personal resilience. She has worked with a diverse client base including high tech, defense contractors, financial services, non-profits, municipalities and more.



Rajesh Wajge, PhD, PMP, CSM, Project Director at InforCreating Business Value through Project Leadership

While deriving the highest business value is generally the main goal, the proverbial devil remains in the details. Project Leaders make sure their projects deliver on the value statement by leveraging their experience, industry-specific knowledge, and leadership skills. They work hard to secure a consensus on the success criteria, and then inspire their teams to work together.

Rajesh’s presentation is about those talented Project Leaders.

Rajesh sharpened his problem-solving skills while completing his PhD in the field of Optimization from Purdue University. After working in the chemical industry for a few years, he moved to the enterprise software field and started managing ERP and Analytics projects. Over the years, he has managed hundreds of client-facing projects of varied scale and complexities.

He believes his training in the field of Optimization, where complex, non-obvious trade-offs are achieved using mathematical algorithms, and his knowledge of various industries have been instrumental in his delivery of business value to his customers.

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