Speakers

Ash Banaszek, Union Pacific Railroad

Ash Banaszek, Union Pacific Railroad

Omaha, NE


Ash Banaszek is a passionate and outspoken UX advocate at Union Pacific Railroad with nearly a decade of experience in the field. She holds a masters of science in information science from Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla, MO and returns to her alma mater regularly to guest lecture in human factors and human-computer interaction courses. Ash has a passion for teaching and getting folks to that “ah-hah” moment about UX. As an avid proponent of creating technology people want to use, Ash’s eternal quest is to destroy technology that gets people so frustrated that they want to chuck it out of a window. Outside of righting tech wrongs, Ash is an award-winning Toastmaster and uses her public speaking experience to infuse humor and thought-provoking questions into her talks. You can follow her on Twitter @ashbzak or linkedin.com/in/ashmb, or meet in person for lively conversation at a UX Happy Hour Book Club Meetup in Omaha, NE.

Jennifer Battan

Jennifer Battan

Minneapolis, MN


Jennifer Battan, CBAP®, the Out of the Box BA, has an energetic passion injecting innovation and creative problem solving techniques into how BAs do their day to day work. Her passion is helping teams apply the art and science of business analysis techniques with fresh, modern perspectives. Jen is an internationally recognized conference speaker, educator and thought leader within the business analysis and creative problem solving communities. She served on her local IIBA (International Institute of Business Analysis) Chapter board as President and in various roles for more than seven years, and led a content development and writing team for the IIBA’s Guide to the Business Analysis Body of Knowledge®. Jen has been a passionate volunteer with the Minnesota Destination Imagination Affiliate for more than 18 years inspiring today’s learners to utilize diverse approaches in applying 21st century skills and creativity to any challenge they face. She is a crafting ninja and is working with her husband to build the ultimate maker space in their currently unfinished basement. All four of their kids (ages 9 to 15) can solder and use power tools. Neither the fire department nor Haz Mat has been to their home. (We don’t discuss Urgent Care visits.)

Paul Carvalho

Paul Carvalho

Waterloo, ON


Paul Carvalho is an avid explorer of how people can work together in ways that generate happiness and success. He is a whiteboard enthusiast dedicated to helping people learn to solve important problems and to grow into their full potential.

With over 30 years IT experience across a variety of industries, technologies, and company sizes, Paul has settled into the primary roles of Training and Coaching (Leadership, Enterprise, Agile, Lean, BDD and DevOps). Paul spent the last three years abroad building digital startups for Fortune 500 companies in Europe, North & South America, and the Caribbean.

Paul’s passion for learning is matched by his passion for sharing and he has spoken internationally on a variety of topics related to software development, quality, agile, and personal wellness. You can find a selection of his articles on the topic of Agile + Quality on his web site at: https://www.quality-driven.com

Sam Chandrashekar, D2L

Sam Chandrashekar, D2L


Sam spent a number of years of her work life coding, designing systems, managing software projects, and training. That’s until she discovered that ‘human’ is the more interesting part of Human-Computer Interaction. Thereafter, work became more of an exploration of how diverse users access the computer and the internet – especially users with constraints such as a sensory or physical disability.

Sam has taught, researched, and practised accessibility and inclusive design in the academia, non-profit, and commercial sector. She now champions these values in education.

Sam currently leads the accessibility initiatives at D2L Corporation, an Ontario-based company known globally for its inclusive technology offerings for education and training.

Marcelo Dubiel, SkipTheDishes

Marcelo Dubiel, SkipTheDishes

Winnipeg, MB


Marcelo is interested in all-things-engineering, and is fuelled by building new technology with amazing people. He has worked in a variety of industries—from aerospace to eCommerce—which has provided him with an effective perspective on delivering products and projects. In his current role as a Product Manager at SkipTheDishes, he collaborates with internal stakeholders to deliver and execute on work that adds value for SkipTheDishes, and other partners.

Joao Gilberto Magalhaes, SkipTheDishes

Joao Gilberto Magalhaes, SkipTheDishes

Winnipeg, MB


I am passionate by Computer Science. I am working since the last 10 years with startups and contributing for their exponential growing. Currently I am at SkipTheDishes as a Cloud DevOps Engineer and assigned to the Core Services Team. I have also a background in software development as well and I maintain a lot of opensource projects. I am from Brazil and enjoying my new life at Canada :)

Ben Goldstein, Northfield IT

Ben Goldstein, Northfield IT

Winnipeg, MB


Ben Goldstein has acted as a bridge between people, business, and technology within large North American organizations for nearly 20 years. He brings a unique perspective as both a communicator and project leader who has worked on web and digital properties, starting with hand-built HTML sites and corporate intranets.

Ben has become a respected leader in making changes in the workplace, helping user adopt new technology, and helping teams deliver the best value. His approach blends technology, team facilitation, and empathy for the complexities of work.

Although self-declared, Ben is an expert in collaboration tools, agile methodologies, and DevOps practices. He’s a past winner of the PMI Manitoba Project of Year Award (2011) and is currently a board member of the Agile User Group Winnipeg

Kevin Guenther, Online Business Systems

Kevin Guenther, Online Business Systems

Winnipeg, MB


As a Principal Consultant of User Experience (UX) Design, Kevin helps define and drive the future of Online clients’ digital experiences. He identifies and sets product strategies, envisions complex UX ecosystems and inspires project teams to push the boundaries of what’s possible. Kevin brings with him 20 years of knowledge in human-computer interaction and excellence in design execution.

Mike Harris, Baird

Mike Harris, Baird

Milwaukee, WI


Mike Harris is a software crafter and life long learner, who is constantly searching for the best tools for the job. Mike enjoys learning new program languages, tools, and techniques which he uses in his day-to-day work as a Software Developer at Baird.

Philip Japikse

Philip Japikse

West Chester, OH


An international speaker, Microsoft MVP, ASPInsider, MCSD, PSM II, PSD, and CSM, and a passionate member of the developer community, Phil Japikse has been working with .NET since the first betas, developing software for over 35 years, and heavily involved in the agile community since 2005. Phil is co-author of best selling “C# and the .NET 4.6 Framework” (http://bit.ly/pro_csharp) and “Pro C# 7” (http://bit.ly/pro_csharp7), the Lead Director for the Cincinnati .NET User’s Group (http://www.cinnug.org) and the Cincinnati Software Architect Group, co-hosts the Hallway Conversations podcast (http://www.hallwayconversations.com), founded the Cincinnati Day of Agile (http://www.dayofagile.org), and volunteers for the National Ski Patrol. Phil is also a published author with LinkedIn Learning (https://www.lynda.com/Phil-Japikse/7908546-1.html). During the day, Phil works as an Enterprise Consultant and Agile Coach for large to medium firms throughout the US. Phil enjoys to learn new tech and is always striving to improve his craft. You can follow Phil on twitter via http://www.twitter.com/skimedic and read his blog at http://www.skimedic.com/blog.

Rob Keefer, POMIET

Rob Keefer, POMIET

Cincinnati, OH


Rob Keefer, PhD is the Director of Data Science at Illumination Works, a software development consultancy. He has advanced degrees in both human factors engineering and computer science, and has practiced Agile Software Development methods since his days with Extreme Programming in 2003. When he is not building systems that make people awesome, Rob enjoys distance running and cycling.

Jeff Kosciejew

Jeff Kosciejew

Toronto, ON


Jeff is an Agile Coach who developed his skills consulting & working with both large and small organizations across a diverse range of industries. His experience includes technical, non-technical, and fully cross-functional teams. He is always looking for ways to disrupt & highlight inefficient processes & systems to enable & empower people’s creativity, and maximize outcomes and value to organizations. His default approach to work, and life, is to turn pretty much everything into a game. Jeff struggles to manage his own WIP. Jeff loves learning, and is always looking to expand what he knows. About anything and everything. Jeff thinks it’s funny to write his own bio in the third person.

Jason Little

Jason Little

Toronto, ON


Jason began his career as a web developer when Cold Fusion roamed the earth. Over the following years, he moved into management, Agile Coaching and consulting. The bumps and bruises collected along the way brought him to the realization that helping organizations adopt Agile practices was less about the practices, and all about change.

In 2008 he attended an experiential learning conference about how people experience change and since then, he’s been writing, and speaking, all over the world about helping organizations discover more effective practices for managing organizational change. He is the author of Lean Change Management and an international speaker who has spoken all over the world from Canada, the US, Finland, Germany, Australia, Belgium and more.

Matthew Philip, 1904Labs

Matthew Philip, 1904Labs

St. Louis, MO


As Director of Delivery at 1904labs, Matthew helps build the right teams to build the right things the right way. He is especially passionate about building learning organizations and creating humanizing and engaging work environments.

Steve Porter, Scrum.org

Steve Porter, Scrum.org

Winnipeg, MB


Steve Porter is an Agile mentor/coach/trainer who has a strong background in multiple project management styles. Over the past several years, he has focused his efforts on Agile practices in general and the Scrum Framework in particular. He has recently worked as the Product Owner for TeamPulse, Telerik’s agile project management tool, and before that has filled the Scrum Master role along with the role of Team Member on many Scrum projects. His hands-on experience with all three Scrum roles makes him an excellent trainer. Steve is currently employed by Scrum.org and works in close collaboration with Ken Schwaber on his mission to improve the profession of software development. He plays an active role in the creation of all Scrum.org training material, and assessments. Most recently Steve was one of only 8 acknowledged contributors to Ken Schwaber’s Nexus framework; a framework for scaled Scrum initiatives.

Steve Rogalsky, Desire2Learn

Steve Rogalsky, Desire2Learn

Winnipeg, MB


Steve Rogalsky first started experimenting with agile and lean techniques as a child. He learned the importance of ‘test first’ and the folly of ‘test last’ after starting a snow ball fight with the older kids in the neighbourhood. While playing the popular Lego game of ‘zoom your vehicle towards your brother’s vehicle and see which one breaks first’, he honed his iterative and experimental development skills. As a basketball player, he saw firsthand the importance of team alignment (“ummm… you just scored on the other team’s basket”).

Today, Steve applies these childhood lessons as a senior product manager at Desire2Learn. Testing assumptions early, iterating on solutions, and maintaining alignment are foundational as we try to reach every learner.

Dave Rooney

Dave Rooney


Dave Rooney is a veteran Agile Coach, manager and developer who has been at this software thing since the 80's. He has a deep interest in the human factors involved in the effective delivery of software that delights its customers, and in promoting practices that make the work environment both more humane and fun. More than 35 years after he solved his first real-world problem on an Apple ][, Dave still enjoys getting his "hands dirty" by writing code!

Dave Sharrock, agile42

Dave Sharrock, agile42

Vancouver, BC


Dave has over 25 years experience working with product delivery organizations, from Fortune 100 companies to startups, local government to academic institutions, from financial institutions to eCommerce giants. Dave helps organizations to understand and to realize the benefits of applying an Agile / Lean mindset to all aspects of the enterprise, whether helping to build an agile product and service delivery organization or creating a resilient enterprise that demonstrates business agility in all that they do.

Dave worked across Europe, eventually acting as CTO for a social media startup before moving from Europe to Vancouver in 2010, to launch agile42 consulting in North America. A sought-after speaker and consultant, Dave is an expert on organizational change and agile product and service delivery.

Amanda Stockwell, Stockwell Strategy

Amanda Stockwell, Stockwell Strategy

Raleigh-Durham, NC


Amanda Stockwell is President of Stockwell Strategy, a UX research practice focused on lean research methods and integrating user knowledge with business goals to create holistic product strategies for businesses large and small. She has focused most of the last decade focused on finding innovative ways to understand end users and embed that knowledge into overall process. Amanda has lead teams that provide research, design, and UX strategy services and frequently writes and speaks about her experience. She has a human factors background, an engineering degree from Tufts University, and was one of the first females on the tech side of her first company. Amanda is used to being one of the only ladies in a men’s world and likes helping and inspiring other females to find ways to shine. She also kicks butt teaching fitness classes, likes spoiling her pooch Bromer, is a proud lobster snob, and helps organize the Durham chapter of Ladies that UX. No preference for One Direction members.

John Tobin

John Tobin

Toronto, ON


John has over 20 years of experience working in software, and with technology in general at companies such as Reuters, Clearnet (and then TELUS), and in professional services consulting firms. He is currently in the business of helping Agile development teams build and deeply software and figure out how to break down complex work into deliverable increments.

Through his career, he’s worked with customers, teams, salespeople, business people, executives, and consultants, and on projects and products large and small, including many in highly regulated enterprises.

John is convinced that Agile approaches and Agile thinking are key to solving the complex problems faced by people who have to build actual software solutions to real problems. His learning and success has come as a result of trying lots of different things, including actually using requirements tracking software to solve the problem of delivered software not meeting people’s needs (which turns out not to work too well, in case you were wondering).

Mike  van de Vijsel, RAPID RTC

Mike van de Vijsel, RAPID RTC

Winnipeg, MB


Mike van de Vijsel is a software architect and integrator with over 20 years’ experience in the field. He works as Manager of Architecture & Methods at RAPID RTC where he has led the company’s emergence as the market leader in lead management solutions for the automotive and heavy equipment industries, as well as their transition to a fully Agile development shop over the last two years. He also plays a mean plastic guitar.

Sergii Vershynskyi

Sergii Vershynskyi

Winnipeg, MB


Sergii Vershynskyi is a Developer with 10+ years of experience in software design and development. Some time ago Sergii started to heavily invest time and effort to learn more about cloud computing, particularly Amazon Web Services. His personal qualities can be categorized as having well-developed research and problem solving skills complemented by critical thinking and attention to detail. Sergii consistently keeps abreast of leading-edge technologies, promoting a knowledge exchange with team members.

Michael Wasylyk, Online Business Systems

Michael Wasylyk, Online Business Systems

Winnipeg, MB


Mike is an accomplished principal consultant and senior agile project manager with over a decade of technical delivery and project management experience. He uses leadership capabilities, and technical development experience to both build and lead high performance teams while specializing in instituting agile project governance.

Jessica Watson, Turn Yourself Up

Jessica Watson, Turn Yourself Up

Winnipeg, MB


Jessica is a creativity and innovation coach, podcaster, yogi, figure skater, and tech advocate. She is constantly curious and also learning to let go of striving mentality in order to live in the flow.

David Wesst, University of Manitoba

David Wesst, University of Manitoba

Winnipeg, MB


A video game making father of two, who believes you can chase your dreams and keep your real life too. Working on #VagabondGame by starlight, while architecting clouds in higher education by daylight. Streaming code and design on #WatchMixer and #TwitchTV, Public Speaker, and lover of video games.

Stuart Williams, IGM Financial

Stuart Williams, IGM Financial

Winnipeg, MB


Stuart Williams has a M. Sc. in Computer Science and Engineering from the University of Washington. His current position is Software Architect at IGM Financial/Investors Group in Winnipeg where he helps teams with their use of Python for Data Science, operations, and web development.

He has taught Computer Programming at University, at summer camps for high school students, and at grade schools. His Python tutotials, taught at the North American Python Conference for over a decade, have received 60,000 views on YouTube.

He founded the Winnipeg Python Users Group, now the Python Winnipeg Meetup in 2005, and the Winnipeg Data Science Meetup in 2017.

Adam Yuret, Context Driven Agility

Adam Yuret, Context Driven Agility

Seattle, WA


Adam Yuret is an experienced systems thinker who has consulted small non-profits and fortune 100 clients on adopting context-driven systems to solving difficult problems. Adam started Context Driven Agility in 2010 to share his passion for humanistic flow-based systems full time. He's been consulting organizations and teams to adapt to their respective contexts using collaborative approaches and lean principles to great effect. Context Driven Agility is about recognizing that no one set of standardized best practices is applicable to every situation. Effective learning organizations strive to understand context before applying approaches or suggesting experiments.