Professional Development
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From local leaders to industry titans, here’s a first look at the PTW20 speaker roster

This list of edge-defining speakers gives you a glimpse at who you’ll meet at 2020's Introduced by and Developers Conference.

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More than 40 speakers will fill nearly 16 hours of programming during’s two pillar business conferences, held each year during Philly Tech Week: Introduced by and Developers Conference.

While the Philly Tech Week 2020 presented by Comcast spans a five-day work week this year, our keystone events cover just two days — yet they are jam-packed with speakers hailing from a diverse cross-section of industries, backgrounds and even geographies.

Here is our first-round list of some of the speakers you will virtually meet during PTW20:

Guy Raz, NPR

Journalist, correspondent and radio host

Danielle Cohn, Comcast NBCUniversal + LIFT Labs

VP of startup engagement and strategic development

Bill Golderer, United Way

President and CEO

Wil Reynolds, SEER Interactive

CEO and founder

Sarah Harris, Entercom

VP of social impact

Manav Thiara, TD Bank

SVP and head of digital transformation, automation and innovation

“Digital transformation can no longer operate on two-year cycles,” Thiara told us. “Development cycles have to be responsive to business-critical needs and measured in days, weeks and months, not years. I will discuss how to build more responsive development cycles at the largest scale and, through case studies, track how COVID-19 has accelerated the rise of business-led IT and the need for more efficient operating models and risk frameworks.”

David Dylan Thomas, Think Company

Content strategy advocate

Thomas’ thoughts: “Fundamentally, this workshop is for people who understand that design is broken. They may not know exactly why or how, but they’ve been paying attention to what’s going on in the world and they need a next step for their business, practice, or organization.”

Greg Ebbecke, Harmelin Media

Team lead for business consulting and VP of business intelligence

“In the face of disruption, a record of success can be a powerful motivation to resist change,” Ebbecke said. “Harmelin Media is proud to support in their efforts to celebrate the value of pushing boundaries and rethinking our impact on our communities through technology. We’re eager to share our experiences blending human ingenuity with technical prowess to keep taking incremental steps into the future.”

Christina Yakomin, Vanguard

Site reliability engineer, Vanguard’s Chief Technology Office

“I will explain how Vanguard implemented a home-grown Chaos Engineering platform for self-service experimentation,” Yakomin said. “I’ll break down the fundamentals of chaos engineering, the value of the practice, and why our team decided to build their own platform from scratch, rather than leveraging a vendor product or an open source library. We’ll get into the details of the architecture, the client engagement model, the risk management strategy, and integrated observability and reporting tooling.”

Alan Hester, Nividous


“With the accelerating adoption of intelligent automation, there is polarization within the enterprise as executives look to automation to bolster revenue and reduce costs while employees fear losing their jobs to robots,” Hester told us. “There is a need to achieve operational excellence and improved customer engagements while maintaining or improving employee satisfaction/motivation. Many of the organizations we, at Nividous, speak with have unanimously asserted that the automation of manual processes has helped tremendously in meeting all of these goals. The recent ‘hyperautomation’ trend is all about leveraging technology to enable businesses, employees, and even partners to automate more and thereby achieve more.”

Adam Mohammed, Linode

Software Engineer

“I will be discussing how to empower your team when solving infrastructure-related problems,” Mohammed said. I’ll show you how the team at Linode has made use of a systematic approach to solving these issues, and how to leverage the method. Using this approach has been successful at making the team effective at leveraging metrics monitoring tools and preventing knowledge silos.”

Nyra L Jordan, AmFam Institute

Social impact investment director

“I think it’s important to be a part of PTW20, especially right now,” Jordan said. “I believe what we are witnessing right now, with the pandemic and with the social justice unrest, is an example of inadequate systems that require innovation and collaboration. I believe that the coupling of private capital with the innovation of startups can be a driving force in the change that we need to see.”

Register today for PTW20’s professional conferences:

Developers Conference — Wednesday, Sept. 23

Whether you are new to programming or you want to sharpen your skills, the Developers Conference is perfect for you. Attendees will experience a full day of tech talks with industry luminaries and a virtual exhibit hall to connect with some of the region’s most prominent tech companies.

Get your Dev Conference ticket today

Introduced by — Friday, Sept. 25

Introduced is a daylong event that introduces you to the ideas, people and opportunities that build better companies. Join over 30 industry leaders and keynote speaker, award-winning journalist Guy Raz of NPR’s “How I Built This” for a full day virtual conference focused on building better companies. Pro tip: Secure your ticket now; we are quickly approaching our inventory limit for you to get a free, signed copy of Raz’s new book (set to drop soon).

Get your ticket and FREE book

Plus, don’t forget to check out Philly Tech Week’s crowning social event:

Signature Event: Thursday — September 24

Bored of the same ol’ virtual events? The 10th annual Signature Event promises to be something different. We will start with an exclusive DJ then present the Awards, reveal the winner of our “Nerd Met Gala” cosplay contest, and wrap up the evening with a live, uniquely PTW-style game of trivia. Your ticket price goes to support the journalism and community organizing from

Get your ticket today

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Companies: Harmelin Media / Entercom / Vanguard / Harmelin Media / Think Company / Linode / NPR / Comcast / SEER Interactive / United Way

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