Event Closed

This event ran April 27, 2017 and has now finished.

We are currently accepting speaker submissions. For more information please contact:

Symon Rubens
Energy Conference Network
+1 (832) 709-0098

Speakers Include:

Phil Beckett
Chief Expansion Technology Officer, HASA

Phil joined HASA in September 2015 as CIO to deliver HIE services in Dallas/Fort Worth, north Texas and west Texas. Phil has served for the last three years as the Chief Technology Officer and Privacy and Security Officer with Greater Houston Healthconnect. Formerly trained in biochemistry and metabolism at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland, Phil came to Houston as a post-doctoral fellow to study protein metabolism at the Children’s Nutrition Research Center.

At Texas Children’s Hospital he developed a rapid amino acid assay used to perform protein clamps and measure insulin sensitivity in children with diabetes. Phil kickstarted his IT career in the neonatal ICU writing interfaces to capture data electronically from monitoring systems around the concept that quality is driven by data.

He co-founded a startup, RosettaMed, as a developer for patient data capture applications with interfaces to electronic health records. He led the sale of the company to Kryptiq Corporation and worked there on secure clinical messaging before joining Baylor College of Medicine to lead their clinical information systems implementation (Epic, iSite PACS).

Phil joined Healthconnect in May 2012 and served as a pioneer for interoperability in Houston and the Southeast Texas region. During his tenure as CTO, Healthconnect went live in April 2013 when CHRISTUS Health and Legacy Community Health Services became the first organizations connected to the Healthconnect network.

Since that first connection, more than 280 healthcare organizations have signed on to exchange information through the network; the entire Beaumont MSA hospital community is live and sharing data. Phil introduced and integrated diagnostic image sharing using DicomGrid into Healthconnect with the goal of reducing duplicate tests and reducing patients’ exposure to unnecessary radiation. Phil has a major focus on usability after many years working with physicians – if it isn’t easy they won’t use it – and on patient engagement. He believes that consumers will drive the future of HIE.

Jesse Carrillo
SVP & Chief Information Officer, Hines

Jesse Carrillo is responsible for directing all corporate technology, strategy and standards for Hines worldwide. Jesse joined Hines in 1994 as a consultant to assist in the implementation of the firm’s accounting and property management software. He took over the responsibility for Hines IT as CTO in 2007 and later promoted to CIO in 2009. Mr. Carrillo completed undergraduate studies at Trinity University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science, and received his Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Texas at San Antonio.

Mr. Carrillo is a member of the National Society of Hispanic MBA’s (NSHMBA), CIO Executive Council, Greater Houston Partnership’s (GHP) Cybersecurity Task Force, serves as VP for Houston Chapter of Society of Information Management (SIM), and serves on the Realcomm International Advisory Council after having served as co-chair in 2010.

He was a featured writer for the book, Building a Green IT Team, part of the Inside the Minds series from Aspatore Publishers. He is also a strong supporter of promoting Youth In IT through his involvement with the Genesys Works (http://www.genesysworks.org) and Citizen Schools (http://www.citizenschools.org) programs, and serves on the board of trustees for Citizen Schools as well as The Shlenker School.

Dr William E. Carter
Vice Chancellor - Information Technology, Houston Community College System


Dr. Carter has been the Vice Chancellor of Information Technology/CIO at Houston Community College since 2006. He leads the strategic planning and budgeting, technology governance, and technical support efforts district wide. The departments and services under his leadership include application development and database management; customer care services; campus technology support services; server, network and telecommunication system administration; cyber-security administration and project management for the technology implemented in all construction and building upgrades in the district.

Dr. Carter has been intricately involved in international initiatives in the Middle East and Southeast Asia. These initiatives include the design and implementation of the administrative and instructional technology and support departments for two campuses of the Community College of Qatar in Doha, Qatar; the pre-accreditation review of the Riyadh Community College in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia which lead to their successful accreditation under the National Commission for Academic Accreditation and Assessment; and the pre-accreditation review and successful accreditation of the Saigon Technical Institution in Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam under the Southern Association of Colleges and School.

Under Dr. Carter’s leadership as Vice Chancellor, Houston Community College has implemented innovative technologies that have saved the district over $30m since 2008 and earned HCC the designation as a Top Ten Digital Community Colleges in 2010 and 2012 as well as recognitions and awards from Computerworld, University Business Magazine, Huffington Post, the American Association of Community Colleges, Cisco, Oracle, Campus Technology, and many others.

He currently represents Houston and the Texas Community Colleges and serves as a member of the following:

  • Greater Houston Partnership Technology Infrastructure Committee
  • Oracle Education and Research Industry Strategy Council
  • Cyber Houston Task Force
  • Texas Association of Community College Chief Information Officers

Dr. Carter holds a Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration from The University of Texas at Austin and an M.B.A. and a B.B.A. in Management Information Systems from the University of Houston.

Deepak Chaudhry
Director - Technology Advisory, BDO Consulting

Deepak Chaudhry is currently the Director of Technology Advisory at BDO Consulting. In his current role he is responsible for driving solutions which include cyber security, platform and application solutions, IT strategy and CIO advisory services.

Prior to joining BDO Consulting, Mr. Chaudhry was the CIO and Security Officer for Greater Houston Healthconnect, which is the public health information exchange for the greater Houston region. His responsibilities included overseeing all implementations, technical support and technology development.

Mr. Chaudhry was Vice President of Information Technology at Nexus Health Systems. During his tenure there,Mr. Chaudhry was the project sponsor and lead on the implementation of Meditech C/S EMR. He also carried out multilevel infrastructure improvements including BYOD management, security appliances, client computing, wireless and network improvements.

He was founding partner of Venus Technology, a healthcare IT consulting company advising healthcare providers on EMR acquisition and implementation of IT infrastructure. During his tenure, he developed home health software and a scheduling application to support therapy staffing.

Mr. Chaudhry also held technical and managerial positions in Philadelphia and Toronto, where he assumed positions in IT consulting – IT Data Management for the healthcare, not for profit, legal and transportation industries. He also managed a large dental practice in Philadelphia and implemented dental EHR services.

Mr. Chaudhry received a Bachelor of Arts from The University of Toronto,Ontario, Canada and a Master’s of Information Science from Pennsylvania State University. He has also earned industry certifications including a Microsoft Certified System Engineer designation, a Project Management certificate from New York University, a Certified Professional in Healthcare Information and Management Systems (CPHIMS) designation and an Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL v3) certification.

Mr. Chaudhry is a board member and current President of the Houston HIMSS chapter and is actively involved in the local healthcare IT community.

Dr. Arthur Conklin
Director, University of Houston

Wm. Arthur Conklin is an Associate Professor and Director of the Center for Information Security Research and Education in the College of Technology at the University of Houston. He holds two terminal degrees, a Ph.D. in Business Administration (specializing in Information Security), from The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) and the degree Electrical Engineer (specializing in Space Systems Engineering) from the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, CA.

He holds Security+, CISSP, CSSLP, CRISC, DFCP, GICSP, CASP, and CSDP certifications. An ISSA Fellow, he is also a senior member of ASQ, IEEE and ACM. His research interests include the use of systems theory to explore information security, specifically in Cyber Physical Systems and critical infrastructures. He has co-authored six security books and numerous academic articles associated with information security.

He is active in the NSA/DHS Centers of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education program, creating the Center at UH. He is a Steering Committee Member of the DHS sponsored Industrial Control Systems Joint Working Group (ICSJWG), a group associated with workforce development and cyber security aspects of industrial control systems. He has an extensive background in secure coding and is a former co-chair of the DHS/DoD Software Assurance Forum working group for workforce education, training and development.

Marianne Crowe
Vice President of Payment Strategies, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston

Marianne Crowe is Vice President of Payment Strategies at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. She oversees industry analysis and applied research on digital and mobile retail payments, standards and security initiatives. She leads the Mobile Payments Industry Workgroup (MPIW), representing mobile payment stakeholders focused on eliminating barriers to successful adoption of mobile and digital retail payments in the U.S. She is also a payments liaison with the Federal Reserve’s Secure Payments Taskforce.

Prior to Payment Strategies, she worked with the Consumer Payments Research Center, Retail Business Development and Emerging Payments, and Check Image Services and Check Operations. Before joining the Fed in 2001, Marianne held project and operations management positions in MIS, IT and Deposit Operations at Bank of Boston.

Eric Devlin
CEO, Lone Star Forensic Group

Eric Devlin is considered one of the foremost experts in Child Exploitation and Cybercrime in the United States. While an Assistant District Attorney with the Harris County he created the Child Exploitation and Cybercrimes Section and served as its Chief Prosecutor.

Eric is also one of the founders and served as a commander of the Houston Metro Internet Crimes Against Children Taskforce, which became one of the largest and most productive cooperative taskforces in the United States. While a member of HMICAC, he was one of the principal authors of the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement’s Cybercrime Certification, for which he still serves as an Instructor.

Eric has taught forensics, cybercrime, and child protection across the United States and served as an expert witness in various state and federal courts as well as with legislative entities. He serves as an on air digital forensic expert and legal consultant for the hit television shows Cold Justice Homicide and Cold Justice Sex Crimes and a new show set to begin airing shortly. Eric is a licensed as an attorney by the State Bar of Texas, and as an investigator by the Texas Department of Public Safety. He is currently the CEO of the Houston based Lone Star Forensic Group, which specializes in Digital Forensics and Technology.

Mary Dickerson
Asst. Vice President | Asst. Vice Chancellor, IT Security/CISO, University of Houston

Mary Dickerson is Asst. Vice President/Asst. Vice Chancellor for IT Security and serves as Chief Information Security Officer for the University of Houston and the University of Houston System.  As CISO, she is responsible for strategic planning and implementation of information security practices, encompassing a range of activities from compliance to technical forensics.

Ms. Dickerson has a B.S. from Texas A&M University and an MBA from the University of Houston. She holds a variety of industry certifications including: PMP, CISM and CISSP. A 19-year member of the Nassau Bay Volunteer Fire Department, Ms. Dickerson is also an Accredited Basic Firefighter for the State of Texas.

Ms. Dickerson served as Chair of the Texas Cybersecurity, Education and Economic Development Council (TCEEDC) originally established by Texas Senate Bill 988, and was elected Vice-Chair of its successor, the Texas Cybersecurity Council.  She currently serves on the Greater Houston Partnership Cybersecurity Task Force, the FBI InfraGard Houston Board of Directors, the Texas CISO Council and the Eastwood Academy Cybersecurity Advisory Board, as well as other boards and special interest groups.

Nick Economidis
Underwriter, Beazley

Nick Economidis is a professional liability underwriter for Beazley USA. Prior to joining Beazley, Nick was the Vice President and Product Manager for Media, Technology and Network Security with AIG Executive Liability. He has 30 years of underwriting experience covering everything from workers compensation to professional liability. For the past 18 years, Nick has specialized in underwriting risk for the technology industries and technology related risk issues.

Nick has an Associate in Risk Management designation from the Insurance Institute of America, a B.S. (Marketing) from Rutgers University, and an MBA degree from Villanova University.

Ed Gonzalez
Sheriff, Harris County

Sheriff Ed Gonzalez, a lifelong Houstonian, was elected on November 8, 2016 as the Sheriff of Harris County. On January 1, 2017, Gonzalez became the 30th Sheriff of Harris County, Texas.

Sheriff Gonzalez earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from the University of Houston Downtown and went on to serve 18 years in the Houston Police Department. Sheriff Gonzalez started out as a civilian employee and became a police officer, rising through the ranks to Sergeant. He served on the elite hostage negotiation team and was assigned to the Homicide Division as an investigator.

After retiring from the Houston Police Department in 2009, Sheriff Gonzalez served three terms on the Houston City Council representing District H. He was elected by his peers in 2010 to serve as Vice Mayor Pro-Tem and was appointed Mayor Pro-Tem in 2012 by Mayor Annise Parker.

Sheriff Gonzalez chaired the council’s Public Safety & Homeland Security Committee. Sheriff Gonzalez resorted to the core of his law enforcement background and experience to improve public safety and neighborhood protection – breaking new ground with initiatives to protect vulnerable seniors from elder abuse, expand the fight against human trafficking, reduce the public safety risks of stray animals, protect cyclists and pedestrians on city streets and protect online buyers and sellers from predators.

The Harris County Sheriff’s Office is the largest Sheriff Office in the State of Texas, and the third largest nationwide. Sheriff Gonzalez leads upwards of 5,000 employees to protect the County’s 4.5 million residents within the 1,700 square miles of Harris County.

Bob Harvey
President and CEO, Greater Houston Partnership

Louanne Harvey
Teacher, Eastwood Academy

Angela Haun
Special Agent & Coordinator, InfraGard, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)

Special Agent Angela Haun entered on duty with the Federal Bureau of Investigation in March 1998.  Agent Haun has served in the Chicago Division, the Office of Congressional Affairs and the Cyber Division at FBI Headquarters, and the Houston Division. Agent Haun has received numerous awards for her work at the FBI, including the Director’s Award for Outstanding Criminal Investigation. In April 2015, Agent Haun received a “Citation for Special Achievement,” signed by FBI Director James Comey, for her dedication and hard work supporting the Houston Members Alliance – one of the most robust InfraGard chapters in the country. Agent Haun received the award for “InfraGard Coordinator of the Year” from the InfraGard National Members Alliance in 2013 and 2016.

Gary Hayes
Senior Vice President & CIO for Technology Operations, CenterPoint Energy

Gary Hayes, Senior Vice President and CIO for Technology Operations, joined CenterPoint Energy in 2010. In this position, he leads the technology solutions and infrastructure across CenterPoint Energy’s electric transmission and distribution, natural gas distribution, and competitive natural gas sales and services which serves more than five million metered customers in six states.

Hayes brings to CNP over 35 years of utility experience. Gary joined CNP from TXU Energy where, as vice president of its Business Applications group, he led the development, deployment and operations of a portfolio of technology systems.

Prior to joining TXU Energy, Hayes served as a director at Deloitte Consulting. For ten years, his focus was Deloitte’s energy practice, delivering consulting services for strategy, operations and large scale implementation of customer, field services and enterprise solutions for regulated and deregulated companies providing electric and gas services.

Hayes’ energy experience began in 1980 at Oklahoma Gas and Electric Company, a regional regulated utility providing services to customers in Oklahoma and western Arkansas. During his tenure at OG&E, he was involved in the construction of three 550 megawatt power plants as well as the expansion of service and electric facilities across OG&E’s service territory.

Hayes holds a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Oklahoma State University. He is a registered professional engineer and land surveyor

Paul Kendall
Governance, Risk & Compliance Senior Consultant, Accudata Systems, Inc.

Paul Kendall is a Governance, Risk, and Compliance Senior Consultant at Accudata Systems, providing high-level consulting services to customers in the areas of IT security, regulatory compliance, and information security management. He is an experienced Information Security Manager with over 35 years of IT experience in the healthcare, financial services, and utility fields, and has broad knowledge of international security issues. Mr. Kendall is an esteemed industry speaker and has been published in nearly 100 publications across the United States, Canada, and Europe.

Taylor Landin
Regional Vice President - External Affairs, AT&T

Taylor Landin is Regional Vice President for External Affairs at AT&T. Prior to joining AT&T, Taylor was Vice President of Public Policy for the Greater Houston Partnership, the region’s leading business advocacy organization. Before joining the private sector, Taylor began his career in Washington working for Vice President Dick Cheney, Sen. Cornyn and Congressman Pete Olson. During the 2012 cycle, Taylor was a Media Director for Mitt Romney’s campaign and also worked the 2008 and 2006 campaign cycles at the Republican National Committee.

Josh Leachman
Sr. Sales Executive, Nehemiah Security

Samuel P. McGee
CIO/COO, Texas First Bank

Sam has 22 years of community banking management experience dealing with technical support, design, implementation, innovation and compliance. He’s worked in diverse multi-user environments ranging from small denovo systems to large established community banks.   Currently Sam serves as the Bank’s Information Security Officer, is Chair of the Business Continuity & Operational committees and is a member of the Executive Committee.

Sam holds a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Arts from Sam Houston State University.  He is a 2005 graduate of the Southwest Graduate School of Banking at the SMU Cox School of Business.  Sam is an eagle scout as well as a proud Army veteran, having served in the first Gulf War with the 307th Engineers, 82nd Airborne.  When not working Sam enjoys fishing, hunting, cooking and spending time with his wife Stephanie and children Maxwell (13) & Malorie (11).

Lucas McLane
Directory of Security Technology, SparkCognition

Lucas McLane is the Directory of Security Technology at SparkCognition and is responsible for the product engineering and efficacy of the Cyber Security (SparkSecure™) product line.  He specializes in applying solid engineering practices and subject matter expertise to ensure product capabilities are enterprise ready. He previously worked as Principal Engineer at Click Security to pioneer next generation incident resolution powered by security analytics. Prior to that Lucas worked for Cisco Systems as a technical lead for next generation firewall (NGFW) products.   He previously served for 7 years as a member of the Texas Tech University Computer Science Department External Advisory Board and still serves as a volunteer for alumni engagement. Lucas graduated from the University of Texas with a Master’s degree in Software Engineering, and has maintained his CISSP credentials since 2008.

Perry Pratt
SVP - Information Security Officer, Allegiance Bank

Perry Pratt is the Senior Vice President and Information Security Officer for Houston based Allegiance Bank. His responsibilities include the strategic vision and implementation of technology in an environment where cyber security and risk are the foundation for every endeavor. Mr. Pratt is a six sigma yellow belt and former United States Marine with a passion for aligning business objectives with technology initiatives that create real-world solutions to everyday problems.

Mr. Pratt is a dynamic technology professional with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Computer Information Systems combined with more than 10 years of security management experience in billion dollar financial organizations. Prior to Allegiance Bank, Mr. Pratt worked at Fiserv and CheckFree corporations where he was part of the team that brought VISA/MasterCard Payment Card Industries (PCI) compliance to the company. He was awarded a certificate of achievement for his efforts in bringing the company its first successful compliance with PCI network standards.

Daniel Ragsdale
Founding Director, Texas A&M Cybersecurity Center

Dr. Daniel Ragsdale is the founding director of the Texas A&M Cybersecurity Center and a Professor of Practice in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering. Dr. Ragsdale previously served as a DARPA Program Manager and successfully led and managed a $175M research and development portfolio of classified and unclassified cybersecurity and educational programs.

Before joining DARPA, Dr. Ragsdale served 30 years in the U.S. Army in a wide array of operational, educational, and research and development settings. During his Army career, Colonel (retired) Ragsdale participated in Operations Urgent Fury (Grenada), Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan) and Iraqi Freedom (Iraq). Dr. Ragsdale also served nearly 15 years at the United States Military Academy, West Point, where he was a leader in a variety of teaching and research roles – culminating with his academy service as Vice Dean for Education, the Principal Deputy to West Point’s Chief Academic Officer.

Jeff Reichman
Principal, January Advisors

Jeff Reichman is the founder of January Advisors, a technology firm that specializes in data analysis and visualization. He is also the founder of Sketch City, which is a community of 2,000+ people looking to advance data and technology in the public sector. He serves on the board of the League of Women Voters Houston where he leads their advocacy work. Currently, Jeff also serves on the Mayor’s Technology and Innovation task force, the Mayor’s Complete Communities Advisory Committee, Sheriff Gonzalez’s transition team and District Attorney Ogg’s transition team.

Jason Ritchie
Assistant Vice President, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas—Houston Branch

For more than 15 years, Jason Ritchie has enjoyed a challenging career at the Houston Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, which combines his background in engineering and information technology with economics and monetary policy.

As Assistant Vice President, Jason leads a diverse team in the planning, implementation, and operation of information management systems across all 12 Federal Reserve districts. He also holds supervisory responsibilities for the operational budget and IT projects of Houston.

Prior to joining the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, Jason worked at NASA, where he managed software assurance issues for the International Space Station. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Aerospace Engineering from Texas A&M University.

Jason is a member of the Texas A&M Banking Program Board of Directors as well as a member of the Greater Houston Partnership Cybersecurity Task Force representing financial services, through which he collaborates and speaks on the improvement of cybersecurity health of Houston businesses and citizens. Related to this effort, he has established the Advisory Board for Eastwood Academy’s Cybersecurity and Digital Forensics, a linked learning program in a Houston ISD high school.


Elizabeth Rogers
Shareholder | Cybersecurity, Privacy & Crisis Management, Greenberg Traurig, LLP

Elizabeth was appointed the first Chief Privacy Officer in the Texas state government prior to joining Greenberg Traurig. Her practice at Greenberg Traurig, LLP draws from her extensive internal experience, but also includes a variety of compliance activities across industry including retail, financial institutions, healthcare, e-commerce, startups and government.

Her areas of concentration include breach prevention and post breach litigation, developing EU Data compliance programs, design of client-specific Information Security Incident Response Plans and enterprise-wide, comprehensive privacy and cybersecurity governance programs, including evaluation of cyber insurance. Outside of work, Elizabeth is an avid supporter of the arts including the Mexic-Arte Museum, Kids in a New Groove and service on the Board of the Texas Accountants and Lawyers for the Arts.

Doug Rowlett
Ph.D., Dean, HCC Digital & Information technology Center of Excellence, Houston Community College

Dr. Rowlett earned his Bachelor’s (1970) and Master’s (1974) degrees in English from Texas Tech University and his Doctorate in English from Rice University (1981). He began his career in higher education in 1976 as an adjunct instructor of English Composition at Houston Community College. In 1989 he was hired as a full-time instructor of English at HCC, where he has taught and worked for nearly 30 years.

As a native Houstonian, he has dedicated his professional life to improving education for under-served populations in the Houston area and advocating for improved quality of life for all the citizens of his native city.

He loves teaching in all its aspects, but he also has a love for technology and its application to new solutions to old problems. Thus, during that very small window of opportunity when it was possible to enter the field of educational technology without formal training in the field, he was able to assume greater positions of responsibility within the HCC system by combining the two great professional loves of his life: teaching and technology.

First as a faculty technology mentor and web master for the college, then as an instructional design coordinator, director of educational technology services, interim dean of workforce and economic development, dean of instruction, and now director of the Center of Excellence for Digital and Information Technology.

He has grown to see how the intricate threads of budgets, commitments, state and federal agencies, acronym-laden programs and initiatives, politics, community, students, faculty, and service all come together to form the whole cloth that is today’s modern educational institution. He has been strengthened in his commitment to the community college mission and model by their ever-rising prominence in the world as the gateway for all students from all backgrounds seeking to achieve their goals, be they academic, workforce, personal, or career focused.

Even today, as a senior administrator at HCC, he insists upon teaching at least one class per year to remain fresh and relevant as an administrator through continued classroom contact and interaction with students.

Dr. Rowlett and his wife Linda have lived in Industry, Texas (population 304), and operated Paradox House Vineyard since 2001, where they grow premium quality wine grapes for the Texas wine industry and enjoy small-town Texas life while still remaining attached and involved in the cultural and professional life of Houston.

Sanjeev Sah
CISO, Texas Children’s Hospital

Sanjeev Sah, a recognized visionary and thought leader, serves as Chief Information Security Officer at Texas Children’s Hospital, where he leads and oversees the enterprise-wide Information Security Program and related functions.

Sah has more than 20 years of progressive leadership experience in the information technology and cyber security arena, previously having served as CISO at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and Amedisys Home Health & Hospice, and Technology Officer at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana.

Andy Sawyer
Director of Security, Locke Lord

Director of Security and Security Compliance Officer for Locke Lord, one of the 100 largest law firms in the US.

Prior to joining Locke Lord, long-term career with the NFL including technology director for three NFL teams and European operations.

Member of:

  • FBI Infragard partnership with the private sector
  • Greater Houston Partnership Cybersecurity Task Force

Responsible for all aspects of physical and cyber security at Locke Lord.

Milind Sethi
Account Manager, Procom

Milind Sethi is a highly qualified and skilled professional with more than 20 years of overall experience. He has held senior management positions in diverse industries, with primary focus on staffing and talent acquisition and retention. He is currently an account manager at Procom, a leading provider of IT staffing services in North America.

John Suek
Information Technology Examiner, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas

John Suek is a commissioned bank examiner and maintains an ISACA CISA certification. He is an Information Technology Examiner at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, where he reviews information technology programs of banks, holding companies, and technology service providers for compliance with applicable laws and regulations. Suek previously worked for the FDIC as a commissioned bank examiner where he conducted bank safety and soundness examinations and information technology examinations. He is a native Minnesotan and earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Minnesota.

Peter Thomas
Chief Technology Officer, Blue Lance

Peter Thomas is a seasoned IT security professional, analyst, and business leader who thrives in the constantly changing and challenging world of network and cybersecurity. For more than two decades, he has been a part of the success of Blue Lance, a global provider of cyber governance solutions, which is headquartered in Houston, Texas.

In 1995, Peter began his tenure at Blue Lance as a Development Manager, overseeing a software team in the development of auditing and monitoring solutions.

Since 2002, Peter has served as Blue Lance’s Chief Technology Officer, leading the engineering team in the development of innovative cybersecurity, governance and compliance solutions. He directs all technology-related planning, including overseeing configuration and systems architecture, operating systems, data communication and internet technologies. Peter monitors and reviews all Blue Lance technology developments and new product enhancements. As part of the senior management team, Peter’s expertise in all aspects of cybersecurity makes him a trusted contributor to Blue Lance’s business strategy.

Before joining Blue Lance, Peter was the General Manager at Softec International where he led technical software teams. He holds a Bachelor of Engineering degree as well as an MBA from the University of Houston Bauer College of Business.

Peter is an active member of the Cyber Houston, which sponsors monthly Cybersecurity Happy Hour events as a community forum on cybersecurity best practices for business leaders and IT professionals. Peter has also served the Greater Houston Partnership Cybersecurity Task Force at the Greater Houston Partnership, which has published the third edition of Cybersecurity and Business Vitality: What Every Houston-Area Business Needs to Know, a helpful guidebook for business owners to assess and improve the status of corporate data security.

You can find Peter on LinkedIn or stay up to date with Blue Lance by visiting BlueLance.com or by liking the Facebook page.

Tom Winn
Interim Program Director - Master of Security Management, University of Houston - Downtown

Tom Winn is currently the Director of the Master of Security Management program at UH-Downtown. Tom has over 25 years of experience in corporate and international travel security and training. Before joining the UH-Downtown Tom spent 10+ years with United Healthcare Global Risk, Security Services Intelligence and Operations. He started his security career at Destec Energy, and subsidiary of the Dow Chemical Company. He holds a Master of Security Management from UHD and a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from Stephen F. Austin State University.

Umesh Verma
Founder of Cyber Houston & CEO of Blue Lance, Chairman of the Greater Houston Partnership Cyber Security Taskforce

Over the past quarter century, Mr. Verma has built Blue Lance into a global provider of Cybersecurity products and services that help companies assess and remediate the security of their information systems. Banks, corporations, health care organizations, education institutions, retail outlets and government agencies in over 40 countries use Blue Lance’s software solutions.

Mr. Verma is actively involved in the following organizations:

  • The Center for Houston’s Future, 2017 Chairman of the Board, 2015 Vice-Chairman; 2013 Chairman of the Communications Committee;
  • Greater Houston Partnership, 2017 Executive Committee, 2017 Chairman of The Cybersecurity Task force whose mission is to (1) create a common set of recommendations to help suppliers strengthen their operations against cyber infiltration; (2) educate and inform small to medium sized businesses of these recommendations to strengthen their cyber posture and attract enterprises to employ their products and services; and (3) build regional consensus on cyber security issues identifying any policy changes needed at the local, state and federal levels;
  • 2017 Secretary/Treasurer Elect of the American Diabetes Association (ADA). Served as 2014 Chairman the Step Out National Income Development Committee. Served as 2010 and 2011 Chairman of the Houston Chapter;
  • Board Member of the Greater Houston HealthConnect (GHH) and is the 2015 Chairman of the Technology Advisory committee. Also serves on the Finance Committee as well as Information Security Risk and Compliance Committee;
  • Board Member of the Houston Technology Center. 2012-2013 Chairman of the Advisory Board;
  • Advisory Board Member of the University of Houston College of Technology.
    Mr. Verma is actively involved in the following organizations:

John Wakefield
Assistant District Attorney, Harris County