Director of Product Management, Google Assistant Developer Platform Google
Rebecca works as Director of Product Management at Google. She leads the Developer Platform for Google Assistant, working to ensure that the developer experience for Assistant is intuitive, fast, and fun. Prior to Google, Rebecca led compliance and Admin product management at Box. Rebecca has also led product at Jobvite, where her team delivered deeply-researched, smartly-designed products and features for Jobvite's Engage, Hire, and Onboard products. Prior to Jobvite, Rebecca worked at NetSuite, leading first Commerce then Infrastructure product management. She also has extensive experience in driving commercial and technology innovation through product management in consumer e-commerce and retail companies, including Shutterfly, eBay, Apple, and BizRate. Rebecca received her MBA from Carnegie Mellon University's Tepper School of Business, and her BA in International Relations from Stanford University.
Greg Bennett is Director of Conversation Design at Salesforce, where he founded and leads the company’s first dedicated Conversation Design practice since its inception. As a sociolinguist, he shepherds a product and design vision at Salesforce that helps teams across the entire product portfolio create inclusive experiences that feel natural, helpful, and meaningful, and manages an international team of Conversation Designers who work with Salesforce’s Product leaders to define the future of conversational AI.
Shyamala is a seasoned conversational AI expert. Having led initiatives across connected home, automotive, and wearables - just to name a few, she's put her work on research into usability, accessibility, speech recognition, and multimodal voice user interfaces and has even been published internationally across publications like Forbes. Outside of her research, she's spent the last 18 years designing mobile, web, desktop, and smart TV interfaces and has most recently joined NVIDIA to own their roadmap for speech AI solutions.
As the Executive Vice President, Sean manages the day to day operations of the agency & licensing teams at Veritone. He has been working in media, sales, marketing, and operations since early 2000. Sean has held various senior level management positions focusing on sales management, technology operations, and strategic partnership development over his career. Sean brings his forward thinking operational insights to the Veritone team in addition to all of their clients and partners. He is passionate about finding new ways to refine media operations as well as creating new advertising opportunities.
Head of Digital – Service Delivery, Cargo & People Cathay Pacific
Maple is an aviation and management professional with experience across a variety of leadership positions in Cathay Pacific Airways. In the current role, she leads the Digital Transformation initiatives across Service Delivery, Cargo and People functions at Cathay Pacific to drive business change through data driven insights and promoting adoption of new technology such as Conversational AI.
Arte Merritt leads Conversational AI partnerships at AWS. He was the co-founder and CEO of Dashbot, a leading analytics platform for chatbots and voice assistants, which he led to 20,000 customers, 90 billion messages processed, and multiple acquisition offers. He is a frequent author and speaker on conversational AI and data insights. Previously, he founded Motally, a mobile analytics platform he sold to Nokia. Arte is an MIT alum
Lisa Falkson is currently Senior VUI Designer at Amazon, leading a team of VUI designers covering Alexa Communication, FireTV, and new multimodal devices. She is the editor and author of “Ubiquitous Voice: Essays from the Field” and has over 20 years of industry and research experience, specializing in the design, development and deployment of natural speech and multimodal interfaces. Her most recent work includes next-generation voice user interfaces at NIO and CloudCar, as well as Amazon’s first speech-enabled products: Fire TV, Fire Phone and Echo/Alexa. Prior to that, she focused on early iPad/iPhone interfaces at Volio, and speech-enabled IVR applications at Nuance. Lisa holds a BSEE from Stanford, and an MSEE from UCLA.
AI Solutions Architect CARIAD, A Volkswagen Group Company
Sanket Shinde is the Voice AI Solutions Architect at CARIAD, a Volkswagen Group Company. A self-described technology and math enthusiast, his background is in data science and research. Sanket received his Master of Science at Technische Universität Darmstadt in Information and Communications Engineering, with a focus on Machine Learning and AI, and a Bachelor of Engineering at the University of Mumbai in Electronics and Communications Engineering. When Sanket's not innovating the driver experience, he's most likely playing the drums or bouldering.
Evan has been an entrepreneur most of his life. Previously, he co-founded Zappedy, a payments technology company that was backed by Eric Schmidt's venture fund and acquired by Groupon. His other technology projects have been covered by the WSJ and PBS. Evan's patents include an HCI invention and a bank infrastructure capability. He has an engineering bachelor's from Stanford in Product Design.
Founder, AI Leadership Institute | Former VP of Digital Technology at NPR | WAC Global Digital Ambassador | Voicebot.ai Top Influencers in Voice | Alexa Conference "Executive of the Year" | VentureBeat’s Women In AI Award for AI Mentorship. I am a leader who creates clarity, leads with empathy and delivers results. I am a leader who acknowledges the work of my teams, inspires and supports innovation and fosters a growth mindset. Intentional, Mindful Leadership is the new normal.
Ayesha is a Conversation Design Manager @ Instacart where she leads the strategy for voice AI and chatbots. Prior to Instacart, Ayesha was the first Conversation Designer at Rocket Mortgage where she defined what conversation design looks like in the home loan space. Ayesha has a Masters in Human-Centered Design and Engineering from the University of Michigan and is a proud Detroit native.
Toni Klopfenstein (she/her) is a Developer Relations Engineer for Google Assistant, focused primarily on Smart Home and IoT platforms. She has been involved with open-source hardware for over a decade, including her previous work at SparkFun Electronics and the Open Source Hardware Association, and enjoys mentoring and teaching. Toni believes in making technology and technology documentation accessible to empower others in making, hacking, and developing their own solutions.
Alex Dunn leads the product team at Voicify and is the founder of Enabled Play. He's also a Microsoft MVP, PubConf Champion, Bixby Premier Developer, and AWS Alexa SME. His background in accessibility, application development, and conversational AI has leaned into enabling applications to do more for businesses and consumers using scalable architectures and design, distributed services, cloud infrastructure, and innovative edge technologies. Alex does his best to remain platform agnostic in his practices and development with specialties in C#, Kotlin, and TypeScript while building for cross-platform compatibility. You might find him co-organizing the Boston Mobile C# Meetup with Microsoft, speaking at all sorts of conferences and events around the world, streaming on Twitch, and on Pluralsight. You can read his regular tips and thoughts in the development community at https://alexdunn.org/ or watch him live at https://twitch.tv/suave_pirate Outside technology, you can find him playing guitar, working with animal rescue, or exploring the great outdoors.
Marlinda Galapon is Conversation Design Senior at Salesforce, where she leads design strategy and production for cutting-edge conversational products across the company's CRM product suite. Drawing on her experience at myriad tech companies such as Adobe, Meta, and Yahoo!, Marlinda puts fairness, rigor, and inclusion at the center of her design process, guiding teams toward developing experiences that are efficient, welcoming, and personable for her users.
Surbhi Rathore is bringing to life her vision of a future where conversation intelligence is easily accessible to any organization. Surbhi has had quite the journey - from software developer to first time founder who moved to the U.S. to create a programmable AI platform built on easy-to-deploy APIs and SDKs. Surbhi is co-founder and CEO of Symbl.ai, a technology that makes it simple to deploy contextual AI and analytics across voice, text and video communication, for any stage software. Symbl is now a Series A startup with $24M in venture financing and 70+ team members across the globe.
Tobias Dengel is CEO of WillowTree, LLC. a leading mobile strategy, design and app development company servicing Fortune 500/5000 clients and large government agencies. He is a seasoned technology executive with 20+ years experience in Mobility, Digital Media and Interactive Marketing.
Jessica Den eEarley-Cha (she/her) is a Developer Relations Engineer for Google Assistant. She has been teaching developers how to build voice applications and App Actions for over 3 years. She enjoys connecting with developers and future developers. Jessica is @WomenInVoice Advocate, former @WomenTechmakers & @gdg lead, former @girldevelopit & @Hackbright teacher. Before attending a software bootcamp in 2015, Jessica worked in the non-profit sector for over 10 years, working primarily with at-risk female youths and adults with mental health challenges.
Jon Stine is the Executive Director and founder of the Open Voice Network. Prior to founding OVN, Stine was global director of retail sales at Intel and a director of North American retail at Cisco. He has an MS in telecommunications from the University of Oregon.
Angela Marin serves as the Director of Athletics for UT Dallas. In October 2021, she became the first Hispanic woman to lead a National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division III (D-III) athletic program. Marin joined UT Dallas in 2012. She leads a team of over 50 staff members and 450+ student athletes. She has worked with the American Southwest Conference (ASC) in the league’s development and she wrote the by-laws and best practices for their compliance directors group. Marin is a member of the NCAA D-III Management Council, the highest position available for a non-president in the division. She received the NADIIIAA Emerging Athletic Administrator Award in 2017, became an NCAA Pathway Graduate in 2021, is an active member of Women Leaders in College Sports and the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics and is serving a four-year appointment on the NCAA D-III Management Council.
Vice President for Diversity, Equity, and Engagement University of Texas
Dr. Yvette E. Pearson is Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) at the University of Texas at Dallas. A Fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), Pearson is recognized globally for over 25 years in higher education, particularly for her work to advance sustainability, justice, equity, diversity and inclusion. Her efforts have led to over $30M in funding for initiatives to support DEI in STEM and changes to policies and practices of global engineering organizations. Among her awards and honors are ABET's Claire L. Felbinger Award for Diversity and Inclusion, ASCE's Professional Practice Ethics and Leadership Award, the Society of Women Engineers’ Distinguished Engineering Educator Award, and ASCE’s President’s Medal, one of the organization’s highest honors. Pearson is a registered Professional Engineer, a Commissioner on ABET’s Engineering Accreditation Commission, and host of Engineering Change Podcast, which has audiences in over 70 countries on six continents.
Joti Balani, founder of Freshriver.ai, is a creative architect designing and delivering complex enterprise, human and systemic transformations with her multidimensional framework blending AI, Data Science, Engineering and Social Sciences. She leads transformative innovations at Fortune 100 enterprises to create emotional, economic and brand value with her team, who represent the empowered human race in all dimensions.
Stas Tushinskiy is the CEO of Instreamatic, based in Palo Alto, California. Prior to Instreamatic, Stas built a leading digital audio advertising sales house in Europe, working closely with Tier 1 brands like Porsche, Starbucks, and McDonalds, as well as global ad agencies including OMD and Mindshare. He's a contributing writer to several voice, marketing and advertising industry publications, including Radio & Internet News, MyCustomer, Podcast Business Journal, Mobile Marketing, and Marketing Magazine.
Alex founded Respeecher with Dmytro Bielievtsov and Grant Reaber in 2018. Since then the team has been focused on high-fidelity voice cloning. Their technology was the first synthetic speech adopted by big Hollywood productions, starting from 2019. Alex is in charge of Business Development and Strategy. Their primary focus is improving the voice cloning technology in several directions, including the tech democratization to let sound professionals and creators all over the world have the fine tool in their acquaintance. Respeecher works in Feature films and TV projects, Video Games, Animation studios, Localization, media agencies, Healthcare, and others
Emily is a content designer at WillowTree, conversation/VUI designer, and professional violinist. She co-moderates the Ethical Use Task Force at the Open Voice Network and co-hosts the Voice Spark Live podcast. Engagements include speaking about voice ethics at VoiceTech Summit Americas and featuring as a Voicefluencer on "The Voice Den." Awards include winning the Digital Assistant Academy's Hackabot 2021.
Madhukar is a product manager on the Google Assistant team working on the Assistant Integration Platform building products that help developers create voice first experiences across surfaces. At Google he has also worked across the Assistant on Auto, Next Billion Users, and Ads teams. Prior to Google, Madhukar was a co-founder at a few startups and has multiple patents in his name. He's an alumnus of Carnegie Mellon University, Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad, Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur, and loves spending time with his kids and pursuing his passion of playing cricket and acoustic guitar.
Chandler Murch is the CEO/Co-Founder of TalkGo. His background is in managing IT business operations for Valve Software, known for it billion dollar distribution platform, Steam and Promethean, a global leader in front-of-class education hardware. His work experience in hardware and software have set him up for an exciting ride to make TalkGo a huge success.
David is a Co-Founder of Curious Thing which is leading the way you engage with your customers using voice-based conversational AI. David is serial tech entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience building technology businesses.
In a few words - entrepreneur, developer, tester, keynote speaker and drummer. Active member and organizer in the testing community. Deep interest in artificial intelligence, machine learning and chatbots from day one. Close friendship with Florian, even after playing in the same rock band for several years :). Started together developing the open source Botium Core in 2018 to reinvent automated testing for chatbots. Today Botium can be considered as the first choice for testing and training conversational AI.
Conversation Designer Australian Broadcast Corporation
Michael Collett joined the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) as a journalist in 2008 and first became involved in conversation design in 2016 as one of the creators of the ABC News chatbot on Messenger. He switched to conversation design full-time in 2020 in order to create a voice app for ABC Emergency, among other CUI projects.
Ed Sewell is an AI security technology pioneer. Ed is the CEO and Founder of Velocity AI - a global artificial intelligence company. Our mission is to build trust in AI to accelerate economic growth for everyone. Velocity is a partner of the Linux Foundation - Open Voice Network - helping move the conversational AI market forward faster. Velocity collaborates with the Open Voice Network to co-create new security standards and technologies for conversational AI. Ed is the inventor of the Mobile Health ID security protocol. The Mobile Health ID allows mothers in sub-Saharan Africa to access health care and immunization services for their newborns. Ed was also the Founder and Chief Architect of Virtual DNA - a global Biometric and Embedded AI security firm.
Charlie Cadbury has been building businesses in emerging technologies for the past 20 years. Having sold his first website in 1999 he went on to found a software business, putITout, growing that organically to a 45 person team and overseeing the creation of over 350 digital products for clients like BBC, RBS and Boeing. Since 2015 Charlie has been working exclusively with Conversational AI. In 2015 he co-founded the multi award winning conversational platform www.dazzle.ai, which among other things became the the first Alexa based concierge tested by Marriott Hotels. Charlie founded Say It Now with Sander Siezen in 2018 to create the platforms required to harness the value created by the voice channel. They have gone on to work with innovative multi-nationals, are UK & EU Alexa Cup holders and recently announced a global ‘Media First’ delivering actionable audio advertising campaigns that allow consumers to purchase goods directly from an audio advert.
Ken is a serial entrepreneur who has leveraged nearly 20 years of strategy, product development, and business management experience to build a company from IP he co-authored with Dr. Hamid Nawab, a renowned researcher, engineer (PhD, MIT ’82) and Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Boston University. His company was the recipient of a National Science Foundation (NSF) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant to conduct research and development work on voice technologies whose performance in speech and speaker recognition does not significantly degrade due to the presence of interfering voices or environmental sounds.
We help companies create charismatic digital assistants. I am a strong believer in the “Age of Assistants” — digital assistants becoming an indispensable connector between brands and their customers. What could be an easier way to start interacting with a brand than to just speak your wishes and questions out loud? I have extensive experience in consultancy for companies on their way into the Age of Assistants. With my team, I help brands discover the strategic potential of starting a true conversation with their customers, work out the way to get there efficiently, and navigate the challenges along the way. My special passion lies in building unique teams that are suited for tackling the challenges of this new age. At VUI.agency, we have assembled a special team covering all the nuances of language and communication; combining fields like linguistics and rhetoric with UX design and technical implementation.