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Speakers

Keynote Speakers

Sean Ammirati

Partner, Birchmere Ventures

Sean Ammirati is a Distinguished Service Professor of Entrepreneurship at Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School of Business. In addition to teaching, he is also the Co-Founder and Director of the Carnegie Mellon Corporate Startup Lab (CSL). The CSL is a Swartz Center initiative that has conducted research and developed tools to help companies better adapt and integrate entrepreneurial best practices into their own innovation processes. The frameworks and tools have helped innovators become more successful entrepreneurs and helped leaders better encourage entrepreneurship and manage their innovation portfolios. In addition to his work at CMU, Sean is also joined Birchmere Ventures as a Partner in 2012. Birchmere focuses on seed-stage SaaS and marketplace startup investments. The firm is headquartered in Pittsburgh with a second office in San Francisco. You can learn more about Sean's work in this area at CorporateStartupLab.com

Jeremy Gilbert

Director of Strategic Initiatives, Washington Post

As Director of Strategic Initiatives at The Washington Post, I lead The Post’s newsroom in developing content strategies tied to workable business models. I also direct a lab dedicated to experimental storytelling that works to identify, create, and execute unique digital products and stories. And I work across The Post to strategize and build products with The Post’s engineering, product design, design graphics, audience, analytics and revenue teams. In my role, I developed The Post’s 2020 election strategy, helped ensure that 2018 election website and apps were safe from malicious attackers, figured out how to tell the story of the 2016 presidential race with 3D printers. I also built The Post’s first machine-generated, fully automated AI-created stories to cover both elections and the Olympics. I helped create The Post's first virtual reality project - including one shown at the Tribeca film festival, initiated the use of 360 cameras, oversaw its first augmented reality story, built a freelance network that changes how The Post covers national stories and launched a new leadership vertical. I was a key part of the digital team that drove The Post to multiple Online News Association and Society of News Design digital news awards. Previously, I led National Geographic’s digital new producers, product designers and iPad magazine. And I spent five years as a professor at Northwestern University’s Medill School. I taught classes in the interactive sequence focusing on the design of media products, helped found a cross disciplinary program with computer science and had an appointment with For Segal Design Institute. While at Medill, I researched the future of human-centered news design, especially tools for the creation, consumption and distribution of journalism on mobile devices, tablets and web-based media applications. Between 2006-8, I led The Poynter Institute's website redesign and worked as a design director, redesigning a pair of award-winning Florida newspapers.

Paul Miller

CEO, Questex

As Chief Executive Officer of Questex, Paul is responsible for shaping the Company’s growth strategy and enhancing its offerings to better serve its customers as a next-generation Information Services Company. Paul will drive Questex’s franchises in its core markets – Beauty and Wellness, Travel, Hospitality, Pharma and Technology. He will also invest in activities including acquisitions to advance Questex’s leadership positions in its core markets and will explore expansion into new market segments that have attractive growth characteristics. A visionary leader with a keen ability and track record of growing businesses, Paul has a passion for creating winning cultures and high performing teams. Paul has led and grown businesses with revenues ranging from $30 to $250 million in both privately and publicly held companies.

Speakers

Jim Elliott

President, James G. Elliott Co., Inc.

Jim Elliott has more than 40 years experience in the advertising industry, including media planning, research, and sales. Prior to founding the James G. Elliott Co., Inc. in 1984, he held numerous executive positions including director of field services at CBS Magazines and western advertising manager for Road & Track Magazine. He writes frequently for industry publication and often speaks at venues such as ABM, AM&P, digitalNow and Folio: events. The James G. Elliott Co., Inc. is the nation’s largest national outsourced media ad sales company and a full-service media solutions consultancy for print and digital publishers and organizations, with extensive experience in business-to-business, association, and consumer publishing. Elliott Co. offices are located in the major advertising centers of the United States.

John French

CEO, John French LLC

As a known leader in the B2B Media industry, John has earned his reputation by taking on challenging roles and producing results. He started his career in the Massachusetts area working for names like IDG, Penn Well, and CMP Publications. John then moved his career to Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey where he worked with a number of groups and eventually became the Vice President and Electronics Group Director for Penton Media, Inc.

Sean Griffey

CEO, Industry Dive

Sean Griffey is the co-founder and CEO of Industry Dive, a B2B media start-up that publishes news and original analysis to more than 4 million business executives across 11 different verticals. Industry Dive has been named a Folio Magazine "Startup to Watch", Top 10 Hottest Publishing Startup by Mattermark, and an ABM "Innovative Media Launch." Sean initially got started in the media industry at FierceMarkets where he served as President and oversaw the launch of more than 25 digital titles and products. Sean was inducted into the min Digital Hall of Fame in 2015.

Tim Hartman

CEO, Government Executive Media Group

Tim Hartman is Chief Executive Officer of Government Executive Media Group, the public sector division of Atlantic Media Company. Dedicated to helping influential executives in government do their important work, Government Executive Media Group is one of the leading digital B-to-B media companies. Over the past fifteen years, Tim has served in various roles across Atlantic Media Company. He joined Government Executive in 2007 to manage new product development, and rose to the role of President in 2012. During his time there, Tim oversaw the transformation of Government Executive Media Group into a digital-first enterprise, launching numerous digital brands and products and expanding Government Executive into the Defense and State and Local markets. Through this aggressive growth and innovation plan, Government Executive Media Group saw explosive reach in audience engagement and traffic increase. Today, over 60% of Government Executive Media Group’s revenue stems from digital products. In March 2014 Tim was appointed Chief Executive Officer of National Journal Group, where he oversaw the National Journal’s transformation from an ad-supported media company to a premium membership and services enterprise. Upon completion of the transformation, Tim returned to Government Executive Media Group as Chief Executive Officer in November 2015.

Wilma Jordan

Founder and CEO, Jordan, Edmiston Group, Inc. (JEGI)

As leader of the most successful independent investment bank for the media, information, marketing, software and tech-enabled services sectors since 1987, Ms. Jordan has been instrumental in completing more than 600 M&A transactions for global corporations, private companies, entrepreneurs, and private equity and venture capital firms. Ms. Jordan’s Best Practices approach to M&A advisory services has been influential in forging the firm’s reputation for overall excellence, integrity and the ability to maximize value for its clients. Her experience includes having founded, owned, managed, advised and served on the Boards of Directors of media, marketing, interactive and technology businesses. Ms. Jordan was one of the founders and initial shareholders of the 13-30 Corporation. She also participated as shareholder, chief operating officer and principal negotiator in the revitalization and 1986 sale of the Esquire Magazine Group. Ms. Jordan has served on the Boards of Directors of four public companies – Lin Broadcasting (NYSE), Lin Television (NASDAQ), Clayton Homes (NYSE) and Lin TV (NYSE). She recently joined the Board of Directors of Fenimore Asset Management, a preeminent wealth management group. In addition, Ms. Jordan is a Trustee of Guideposts, Inc.

Jeff Mancini

Chief Strategy Officer, arizent

Jeff Mancini is Arizent's Chief Strategy Officer, responsible for brand, experience and commercial strategy. His mission is to continually reimagine the experience for our community of leaders who shape the B2B industries we serve. Before joining Arizent, Mancini was the Chief Marketing Officer of Related Companies managing more than $30 billion in assets globally, including the beloved lifestyle brands Equinox and SoulCycle. Before that, he served as the CMO of PIRA, the energy information and analytics division of S&P Global Platts. Starting his career in advertising and branding, Mancini led the brand experience practice at Interbrand, then the business transformation group at R/GA.

Geordie Pierson

Principal, Falfurrias Capital Partners

Mr. Pierson joined Falfurrias Capital Partners as a Senior Associate in 2014. He was later promoted to Vice President in 2016 and Principal in 2018. Previously, Mr. Pierson was an Associate at Pamlico Capital, a Charlotte-based private equity firm with approximately $2.5 billion under management. While at Pamlico Capital, Mr. Pierson focused on the execution of middle-market growth equity and leveraged buyout transactions in the business & technology services and communications industries. Prior to Pamlico Capital, Mr. Pierson worked in investment banking with Wells Fargo Securities (formerly Wachovia) where he focused on mergers and acquisitions, equity financings, and leverage finance transactions for both public and private companies as a member of the Financial Sponsors Group.

Gemma Postlethwaite

CEO, arizent

Gemma Postlethwaite became CEO of arizent (formerly SourceMedia) in April of 2018. Prior to joining arizent, Gemma was CEO of PIRA Energy Group where she led a major transformation of the company and established PIRA as the leading integrated, research and data provider to the global energy markets. In 2016 Gemma led the sale of PIRA Energy Group to S&P Global. Postlethwaite has spent several years in leadership roles in the business information sector. Prior to joining PIRA Energy Group, she was SVP, Strategy and Operations at Altegrity, a global provider of risk and compliance solutions; and Chief Product Officer and President of Infogroup’s SMB business unit. She also spent eight years at Thomson Reuters in leadership positions spanning product and commercial management and led the channel partnership business for the Investment and Advisory Division.

Rob Ristagno

CEO, Sterling Woods Group

Rob Ristagno is the founder of The Sterling Woods Group and previously served as a senior executive at several digital media and e-commerce businesses, including as COO of America’s Test Kitchen. Starting his career at McKinsey, his focus has always been on embracing technology and analytics to spur strategic growth. He and the team are passionate about helping clients understand their best customers through data, and developing new product and marketing strategies that exceed expectations - and generate impressive revenues. Committed to spreading this message, Rob is the author of A Member is Worth a Thousand Visitors and is a regular keynote speaker at conferences around the world. He has been featured on ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox, and Digiday. He holds degrees from the Harvard Business School and Dartmouth College and has taught at both Harvard and Boston College.

Jesse Serventi

Founding Partner, Renovus Capital

Mr. Serventi is a founding partner of Renovus Capital. Previously, Mr. Serventi was an investment professional at Leeds Equity Partners, an education focused private equity firm. Mr. Serventi began his career at Citigroup, first in its investment banking division and then its principal investment division, Citi Private Equity.

Tony Uphoff

President and CEO, Thomas

Tony Uphoff is President and CEO of Thomas. He previously was CEO of Business.com; the leading online destination that over 30 million, small-to-medium business executives rely on to acquire the knowledge, products and services they need to run and grow their businesses. He is a uniquely accomplished operating executive with an unparalleled track record of building, growing and transforming media and marketing businesses. He has been a leader in media innovation and transformation for the last 20 years. Before joining Business.com in 2013, he was CEO of UBM TechWeb, where he led the transformation of a declining $125M print-centric business into a fast-growing $225M digital media, live event and marketing services powerhouse. Prior to that, Uphoff was founding CEO of Beliefnet, an Internet startup that was sold to News Corporation in 2007. He served as President of VNU Media’s Entertainment Group and Publisher of The Hollywood Reporter, growing the business to $100M in revenue and delivering the 3 largest years in The Hollywood Reporter’s 75 year history. Uphoff was Publisher of InformationWeek in the mid-90′s, growing revenues from $15M to over $150M and into the largest brand in the history of B2B media. Uphoff also served in several key management positions at Ziff-Davis during the company’s rapid growth in the early 1990′s. Uphoff was named “Folio Forty C-Level Visionary” by Folio Magazine in 2011 and is regularly named in the Top 100 business media execs by B2B Magazine. He was named “Top Media Innovator” by Mins B2B in 2009. Uphoff is acknowledged as an industry expert on media, marketing and technology and serves as a regular speaker at industry conferences and leading business schools. Uphoff serves on the boards of NTN Buzztime, the HIMSS Media Group and as a Trustee of Linfield College. He also serves as a Business Mentor at Mucker Labs Accelerator and on the advisory boards of the data company Connotate and the Internet radio company Jelli.

Matthew Yorke

Chief Digital Officer, Northstar Travel Group

Matthew Yorke joined Northstar Travel Group as Chief Digital Officer in September 2018. In this role, Matt is charged with advancing Northstar Travel Group’s portfolio of digital marketing capabilities and products and enabling profitable revenue growth across all aspects of the business. Matt has responsibility for Northstar’s strategic digital transformation, marketing services, digital product development, custom content solutions, audience development and customer data management, and digital media sales at Northstar.



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