Speakers & Trainers

Nathan Salmon 
Chief Architect for Ember at MetiStream

Nathan Salmon is MetiStream's Chief Architect and visionary for Ember, an intuitive machine learning solution leveraging FHIR and Spark. He brings deep domain expertise in healthcare from his early career at Cerner and extensive experience in big data technologies such as Spark, Kafka, Solr, and HBase. Nathan has architected and implemented streaming, search, analytic, and storage solutions for companies such as Cerner, Rush University Medical Center, Global Wireless Solutions, Evariant, and Bose Corporation. As a contributor to Open Source projects such as Samza and Impala and a regular speaker at many technology meetups, he is passionate about Open Source and regularly gives back to the community. Nathan is also an amateur ping-pong champ, avid musician, and can share jokes in Japanese.

Elena Boiarskaia
Senior Technical Solutions Engineer at Databricks

Elena is an enthusiastic data scientist who loves to explore diverse applications of machine learning in a variety of fields. Currently, Eena is a Senior Technical Solutions Engineer passionate about helping a wide range of customers solve their data science needs on the Databricks’ Unified Analytics Platform. Prior to Databricks, Elena was a Lead Data Scientist at the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, building machine learning models to identify manipulative activity in the US markets. With a strong quantitative background, Elena earned her PhD from the University of Illinois with a dissertation focusing on predicting health outcomes using machine learning.​

Patrick Hall
Senior Director of Product at H2O.ai

Senior Director of Product at H2O.ai Patrick Hall is a senior data scientist and product engineer at H2O.ai. Patrick works with H2O.ai customers to derive substantive business value from machine learning technologies and his internal product work at H2O.ai focuses on model interpretability. Patrick is also currently an adjunct professor in the Department of Decision Sciences at George Washington University, where he teaches graduate classes in data mining and machine learning.

Chris Fregly
Founder, CEO at PipelineAI: Real-Time Enterprise AI Platform

Chris Fregly is Founder and Research Engineer at PipelineIO, a Streaming Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence Startup based in San Francisco. He is also an Apache Spark Contributor, a Netflix Open Source Committer, founder of the Global Advanced Spark and TensorFlow Meetup, author of the O’Reilly Training and Video Series titled, “High Performance TensorFlow in Production.” Previously, Chris was a Distributed Systems Engineer at Netflix, a Data Solutions Engineer at Databricks, and a Founding Member and Principal Engineer at the IBM Spark Technology Center in San Francisco.

Ugur Tigli
Chief Technical Officer at Minio, Inc.

Ugur joined Minio in August 2017. Prior to Minio, Ugur spent 8 years as the Sr Vice President of Global Hardware Engineering at Bank of America and 10 years as the Vice President of Storage Engineering at Merrill Lynch. Today, Ugur has been instrumental in the strategic development of Minio's S3 high performance object storage platform and helping customers deliver on their cloud based initiatives for big data, AI and machine learning. And BTW, his first name is pronounced UR. 

Hari Rajaram
Director Of Engineering - Open Source / Big Data Solutions at Merlin International

Hari Rajaram, Director of Engineering at Merlin with over a decade of experience in Information Technology has extensive knowledge in big data analytics, security, real-time streaming. He has great passion towards data science and finds a way to implement machine learning into everything that he works on. He is a Speaker , multiple hackathon winner and has received various accolades throughout his career. He has co-authored a book on real-time streaming (Apache Flink) and is instrumental in architecting /implementing open source/ big data frameworks for the Cyber security product at Merlin.

Charmee Patel
Product Innovation - Data & Analytics Architect at SYNTASA


Charmee Patel is a Data Architect at Syntasa and is working on building next generation Advanced Analytics Application that can handle many types of digital interactions and allows it's users to gain Behavioral Insights quickly. Prior to Syntasa she was doing Distributed Data Processing at Telarix; mastering the concept of pushing Computations to Data instead of Data to Compute nodes well before Hadoop revolutionized large scale distributed storage and computing on commodity hardware.

Eric Martin
Chief Technical Officer at Capital One

Eric Martin joined Card & Small Business Tech on July 2018 and as Chief Technology Officer, US Card Verticals, EASE Mobile/Web, Digital Servicing & Engineering Excellence. As CTO, Eric focuses on delivery of innovative, industry-leading digital capabilities for our Mainstreet and Upmarket segments. In addition, as the leader of Engineering Excellence & Architecture, Eric drives optimization of engineering and agile development practices. Eric previously served as MVP for Cyber Security Architecture, Engineering, Cloud and Machine Learning at Capital One. Prior to joining Capital One, he has more than 20 years of diverse technical, engineering and leadership experience. Eric is one of the original engineering leaders and architects of AWS infrastructure and many of the core design principles and creation of AWS’ security design and architecture that has successfully scaled and is in use today having previously served as CISO and Security Engineering leader for Amazon including Retail and AWS. Eric has also served as CISO and leader of Fraud Management at Intuit, and CISO for eBay, Inc. (PayPal, Marketplaces, Enterprise). Eric has also held engineering and security leadership roles at IBM and TNS (WPP) along with multiple entrepreneurial, advisory, and consultant roles at startups throughout his career.

Ted Malaska
Director of Enterprise Architecture at Capital One

Ted is currently a Director of Enterprise Architecture at Capital One. Previously, Ted was the Director of Engineering of Global Insights at Blizzard Ent, and before that a Principal Solution Architect at Cloudera, seeing the company grow 10x in his tenure. Ted has also written two books (Hadoop Application Architect and Foundations for Architecting Data Solutions: Managing Successful Data Projects), multiple blogs, and about a dozen training classes for O-Reilly.

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Yuri Bogdanov
Director of Software Engineering at Capital One 

Yuri is has been a director of software engineering since 2016, responsible for operations of over a dozen engineering teams and leading solutions for Capital One Upmarket customers. He is a hands-on executive leader who strengthens business opportunity through strategic technology planning, enterprise roadmaps and leadership, connecting business and IT. Yuri brings passion and culture shift and to his organizations. He is a strategic IT executive and champion for change – with reputation for leading through ambiguity and maximizing cutting edge technologies. His main interests include Big Data, Machine Learning, Apache Spark, and Deep Learning. 

Dr. Eliu Huerta Escudero
Founder and Lead of the Gravity Group at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 

Founder and Lead of the Gravity Group at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Eliu obtained a Master in Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, followed by a PhD in Theoretical Astrophysics, at the University of Cambridge, United Kingdom. His work is motivated by grand computational challenges in the nascent field of Multi-Messenger Astrophysics. He combines his expertise in theoretical astrophysics and large scale computing to create scenarios for Multi-Messenger Astrophysics, driving innovation on the exploitation of machine and deep learning for the modeling, detection and scientific exploitation of transient astrophysical phenomena.  

Dr. Alain Briançon
Vice President of Data Science at Cerebri AI

Dr. Alain Briançon, Ph.D., is the Vice President of Data Science at Cerebri AI. He is a known serial entrepreneur and inventor with more than 230 patents worldwide. Dr. Briançon has vast experience in wireless, electronics, IoT, and enterprise software, as well as domains that have experienced meaningful growth through ecosystem approaches. Cerebri AI is his fifth venture. His previous startups included NTERA, Horizon Analog, Kitchology, and DemSoft. While at Motorola, he was responsible for standards at WAP Forum, FIPA, VoiceXML, MeXE, IETF, W3C, Bluetooth, Home RF, Java SIGs, ETSI. At InterDigital, he directed work on technologies covering 4G, LTE, IoT, security, and privacy. Previously, Dr. Briançon also held executive and leadership positions at Comsat, GTE, and BellSouth. At his previous startup ventures, he applied AI and IoT to predict appliance failures, electioneering management in state races, tackled food and diet management through technology, and now he is creating 'Next Best Actions' for Fortune 500 companies to predict customer behavior. Dr. Briançon holds a Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 

Victor Potapov
Senior Director of Software at Cerebri AI

Victor Potapov, M.A., is the Senior Director of Software at Cerebri AI. Victor brings over 15 years of technical and managerial experience in Hadoop big data, business intelligence, data science and digital marketing industries with a track record of successfully executing big data, analytics and innovation roadmaps. Victor has spent the last six years focusing on building large-scale enterprise data lakes, data science and digital platforms, and enabling self-service capabilities in the digital media and telecommunications space. Prior to joining Cerebri AI, Victor led the big data innovation teams for Ernst & Young and Rogers Communications. Presently, he is responsible for evolving the Cerebri Values system, Cerebri AI’s patent-pending product while also integrating big data and AI features and capabilities into it. Victor holds a Masters in Economics and a specialization in Econometrics from the University of Missouri. 

Chris Hamson
Cloud Solution Architect, Data and AI at Microsoft

Chris Hamson is a Cloud Solution Architect focused on Data and Artificial Intelligence at Microsoft. He is now architecting enterprise-scale environments for commercial customers and actively training AI models for the Agriculture sector. Prior to Microsoft, he was Chief Credit Officer at a fintech start-up and worked at Capital One as a Statistician for 13 years. As a hobby he is developing a system to recognize, target, and aggressively deter the squirrels that are eating the tomatoes in his garden. 

Silvio Fiorito
Resident Solutions Architect with Databricks

Silvio is a Resident Solutions Architect with Databricks. He joined the company in May, 2016 but has been using Spark since it's early days back in v0.6. He's delivered multiple Spark training courses and spoken at several meetups in the Washington, DC area. He's worked with customers in the financial industry, digital marketing, and cyber security all using Apache Spark. In addition to Spark development, Silvio also has a background in application security and forensics.

Ricardo Portilla
Solutions Architect at Databricks

I am a Solutions Architect at Databricks as of April 2018. I completed a Ph.D in Mathematics at the University of Michigan, and after graduating there became immersed in big data technologies at FINRA. There, I have led several large-scale Spark migrations for equities market surveillance projects, and I have also led machine learning and anomaly detection efforts on financial time series data as a product owner, architect, and data scientist. I'm passionate about enabling data science at scale on the Databricks platform and unlocking use cases for data-driven work. 

Mike Trepanier
Senior Big Data Engineer at MetiStream

Senior Big Data Engineer at MetiStream. Experienced Software Developer and Electrical Engineer with a demonstrated history of working in the telecommunications industry. Currently holds a BS in Electrical Engineering and an MS in Computer Science with a specialization in Machine Learning from the Georgia Institute of Technology. Expert in Python, C, C++, SQL, and Scala programming languages. Adept in big data tools such as Oracle, Hadoop, Spark, Hive, and Pig.