« ParksAssociates.com Hosted by Parks Associates

CONNECTIONS™ Summit Speakers

Contact Parks Associates with any questions about speaking.


Rob Conant Rob Conant, CEO, Cirrent

Rob Conant, the CEO of Cirrent, has a long history in the Internet of Things and connected products. Rob was a pioneer in the Internet of Things as a co-founder of Dust Networks in 2002 where he ran sales and marketing and set the product direction as the company enabled a new market for wireless connected products in the industrial market. After Dust, Rob joined Trilliant to bring the benefit of connected products to the energy industry, where he delivered smart meters and energy management to millions of customers across the US, Europe, and Asia. Rob first ran the engineering team to ensure the company had market-leading products, then took the position of Chief Marketing Officer to drive the company’s growth. Rob’s deep technical background and business orientation gives him a unique perspective on the interactions between business models, technology, and consumers. Rob has a PhD in Electrical Engineering and a BS in Mechanical Engineering from UC Berkeley.

Alex Dunn Alex Dunn, President, Vivint Smart Home

As President of Vivint Smart Home, Alex oversees the strategic direction of the company and manages Vivint’s revenue growth and future expansion plans. Since joining the company, Alex has taken Vivint from a local, direct-to-home business to a leading smart home company with 9,000 employees and more than a million customers. In 2006, Alex played a critical role in bringing on equity partners including Goldman Sachs, Jupiter Partners, and Peterson Partners, and securing an $800 million credit facility with a syndicate of 13 financial institutions. In 2012, he spearheaded the company’s acquisition by the Blackstone Group for more than $2 billion, positioning Vivint for further growth. Before joining Vivint, Alex started and ran two successful venture-backed companies, and served as Chief of Staff and COO to Governor Mitt Romney in Massachusetts. Alex has a bachelor's degree from Brigham Young University.

Grant Erickson Grant Erickson, President, Thread Group

Grant Erickson is President of the Thread Group and a principal engineer at Nest, where he oversees the technical development of software designed to support Bluetooth Low Energy, Thread, WiFi, and Nest Weave. In his role, he was also an early contributor to the formation of the Thread Group and Thread networking protocol.

Asit Goel Asit Goel, Senior Vice President & General Manager, Business Line Secure Monitoring & Control, NXP Semiconductors

Asit joined NXP in January 2015 as SVP GM for Secure Monitoring and Control business line to drive opportunities for NXP in the Internet of Things domain. He brings strong leadership capabilities with 20+ years of experience in the tech industry, deep expertise in formulating and implementing technology strategies – particularly in the IoT sector, and a track record of driving growth in large technology firms. Before joining NXP, Asit Goel was a Partner at Bain & Company, one of the world’s leading management consulting firms. While there, he orchestrated and led several multi-year engagements focused on driving growth in new technology sectors, and leading M&A and post-merger integration for large multi-billion dollar deals. Prior to Bain, Asit held several technical and business management positions at ST Microelectronics and Memec LLC. He holds an MBA from Anderson School of Business, UCLA, and a Bachelor of Engineering degree from Bangalore University, India.

Lee Gruenfeld Lee Gruenfeld, VP of Strategic Initiatives, Support.com

Lee joined Support.com in July 2014 as Vice President, Strategic Initiatives, responsible for overseeing the development and execution of various long-range technology and service strategies, including the company’s IoT positioning and mergers & acquisitions. Prior to joining Support.com he consulted to clients including Citrix, where he contributed to the design of a customer care system for the SaaS division and helped guide the integration of several acquisitions. He also served as Senior Vice President/General Manager of the SaaS product division he started for New Wave Automation (acquired by Global Cash Access). Earlier, he was a partner in the management consulting practice of Deloitte in New York and Los Angeles, where he served as National Director of Education for the firm’s Strategic Information Systems Planning service line and was a national resource in the areas of technology-related litigation and contracting.

A best-selling novelist and non-fiction writer, he has also written features and blogs for Computerworld, and served as a member of the board of directors for the Society of Certified Data Processors. He is currently co-director of Exceeding Expectations, a not-for-profit organization serving at-risk, inner-city kids in San Bernardino.

Gene Han Gene Han, Vice President- Consumer IoT, Head of SF Innovation Office, Target

Gene Han is Vice President of Consumer IOT and leads Target’s San Francisco innovation office. Gene leads the team responsible for Open House, Target’s IOT learning lab in San Francisco, for building relationships with startups and for developing a pipeline of IOT products to Target stores. Previously, Gene worked on Target’s strategy team and led teams responsible for incubating several billion-dollar growth initiatives. He established the company’s retail innovation research lab and is co-champion of its internal design thinking practice. Gene also actively consults with the company’s ecommerce acquisitions, start-up accelerator in India and Entrepreneurs-In-Residence. Outside of work, Gene is an active angel investor and coaches several start-ups. He also serves on the Board of Advisors for Recycle Across America and is the founder of MBA Connect, a Minnesota based philanthropic group supporting local charities. Gene received an MBA from the Chicago Booth School of Business and holds an Engineering degree from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

Daniel Herscovici Daniel Herscovici, SVP & GM, Xfinity Home, Comcast Cable

Daniel Herscovici is Comcast's Senior Vice President and General Manager, responsible for all aspects of the Xfinity Home business, a cloud and broadband-based platform providing next-generation home security, home automation and the foundation for a ‘smart home’. Xfinity Home delivers the platform and services through which Comcast will deliver on the promise of connected devices, connected home and the Internet of everything.

Prior to this position, Dan was vice president and general manager of Signature Support, a business that provided consumers and small businesses with advanced tech support and outsourced IT services for all the technology they connect to Comcast’s core services.

Dan joined Comcast in 2007 as vice president of Product Management for Comcast's high-speed Internet service, which with more than 20 million Internet customers, makes Comcast the nation’s largest Internet service provider. In this role, he conceptualized and led the launch of Xfinity WiFi, enabling Xfinity Internet customers to access thousands (and now millions) of Wi-Fi hotspots nationwide. He also helped lead the introduction of DOCSIS 3.0 technology, further solidifying Comcast’s market leadership position as one of the fastest Internet service providers in the U.S.

Before joining Comcast, Dan spent nine years at Motorola Mobility and several years with Lucent Technologies and Philips Electronics in various product leadership roles.

Dan earned a Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering from Boston University, a Master of Science in mechanical and manufacturing engineering from Drexel University, and an MBA from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

A native of New York City, Dan now resides in Princeton, New Jersey with his wife and two children. He serves as a mentor to entrepreneurs through programs like DreamIt, a venture capital firm and startup accelerator.

Jim Hunter Jim Hunter, Chief Scientist and Technology Evangelist, Greenwave Systems
Twitter ID: @GreenwaveSys

Jim Hunter is the Chief Scientist and Technology Evangelist of Greenwave Systems. He is responsible for oversight of technology, architecture and innovation of the Axon platform. As Technology Evangelist, Jim promotes the Greenwave platform and technology message through industry engagement. Prior to joining Greenwave Systems, Jim led Motorola Mobility’s (a division of Google) architecture and strategy for driving the future of the smart, simple connected home. During this time, Jim invented several key patents and served on several patent boards mentoring other inventors. In December 2010, Jim joined Motorola Mobility through the acquisition of 4Home, a company he founded and served as CTO and Chief Architect. Earlier in his career, Jim founded Premise Systems, the first IP-based connected home platform company, which was acquired by Motorola in 2003. Jim’s specialties include Software Architecture, User Interface Design and Development and Intellectual Property Development. Jim is a passionate inventor and futurist, inventing a number of patents across a broad spectrum including data algorithms, user interaction, contextual data and device management. Prior to the advent of the connected home, Jim served in the US Navy as a Nuclear Engineer and Nuclear Certified Instructor.

Erik Kling Erik Kling, Vice President M2M New Business Development, Vodafone

Erik Kling has more than 20 years of experience in the communication technology field covering hardware, software, services and solution elements of the industry. Erik has held senior sales and product management roles at Siemens Communications and wireless startup companies along with over ten years specifically in the IoT space. Erik joined Vodafone in September 2010 and holds the current position as Vice President IoT New Business Development. His responsibilities include building and developing the IoT domestic new business team including the Latin America region, driving IoT solutions into Vodafone Global Enterprise accounts along with additional customers and markets and defining, developing and nurturing the IoT ecosystem within the market place. Erik’s experience has spanned the globe with multiple roles in Europe, based in Spain and Germany and over 10 years in the Americas. Erik was born in Germany, lived in Spain, Mexico and Canada.

Bill Lee Bill Lee, Vice President of Smart Home Product Marketing, Samsung

Letha McLaren Letha McLaren, Chief Marketing Officer, Icontrol Networks
Twitter ID: @IcontrolNtwrks

As Chief Marketing Officer, Letha leads Icontrol’s product and marketing initiatives, responsible for product investments and corresponding marketing strategies to grow revenue and deliver excellent customer experiences in the emerging connected home market. She brings more than 15 years of diverse marketing, product development, and business leadership experience. Letha came to Icontrol from Landis+Gyr, a leading smart metering and energy management solutions provider, where she was the General Manager of global deployments for Energy Management and Advanced Applications. Prior to that, Letha was the Director of Software Product Management at Cellnet Technology, a leading automated meter reading services provider. She also held roles at Schlumberger in their automated metering division. Letha has a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Southern Tech in Marietta, GA and a Global MBA from the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, GA.

Kevin Meagher Kevin Meagher, SVP Business Development, ROC-Connect

Kevin Meagher is the SVP Business Development for ROC Connect, a technology company offering an enterprise grade cloud platform to support the IoT and the deployment of smart home products and services.

Meagher is the former VP and General Manager of Lowe’s Smart Home initiative. He led Lowe’s IoT program, including the development of deployment of connected products and services through stores. Kevin founded Intamac Systems, a UK company offering a Cloud platform delivering smart home solutions to the mass consumer market through telecommunications companies and utilities.

Meagher has been recognized as a global pioneer and thought leader in the smart home and IoT. He has lectured on business management and published papers at national and international conferences. Additionally, he is the recipient of numerous awards including Ruban d’Honneur as European Entrepreneur of the Year, and his company won the European Best Business Innovation Award. He has 3 patents. He has also served as a Group Captain in the Royal Air Force.

Meagher is a Chartered Engineer in Aeronautics and holds an MBA from the Open University.  

Curt Schacker Curt Schacker, SVP, Smart Home, EVRYTHNG
Twitter ID: @Evrythng
Website: http://www.evrythng.com

Curt has spent over 25 years in the Silicon Valley high tech community, having held a number of senior positions in sales, marketing, and business development, including VP of Worldwide Marketing at Wind River (Intel), Executive VP of Field Operations at Real-Time Innovations, and VP of Sales at Arrayent. He co-founded and served as CEO of Embedded Solution Partners, which was named the 20th fastest growing private company in Silicon Valley in 2006. Curt has spoken and served as a panelist at numerous events around the world, offering education and insight into leading edge embedded and communications software topics. He is a strong advocate for advancement of Web- connected products. Curt began his career developing flight software for the NASA Hubble Space Telescope. He graduated with honors from Wright State University with a degree in Computer Science.

Ratul Sengupta Ratul Sengupta, Vice President, Client Engagement, Sutherland Global Services
Twitter ID: @SGS_Corporate
Website: http://www.sutherlandglobal.com/

Ratul works as an Intrapreneur driving technology enabled transformation. His efforts towards developing creative engagement models and implementing business strategy have led to increased efficiencies and significant new revenue streams for multiple clients.

Ratul manages key OEM clients within Sutherland’s Technology Vertical as Global Client Engagement Lead;where he owns Sutherland’s relationship, business development, service operations and innovation imperatives with these clients.

In addition, Ratul has evangelized, built and leads Sutherland’s SmartLeap(tm) practice – next generation technology enabled services and platform solutions that helps clients reduce cost of services and increase end-customer satisfaction, customer stickiness and revenue realization from in-scope and out-of-scope technical support.

Ratul is an Economics graduate from Delhi University, a qualified Chartered Accountant and an MBA from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. He is based in Austin, Texas with his wife Anuradha and together they have 3 daughters.

Isaias Sudit Isaias Sudit, Founder, TROVE

Isaias has spent the last 25 years creating and building high growth companies. Prior to founding TROVE, Isaias had launched and developed three companies in technology and data aggregation service industry. In 2004, he started LOC-AID® Technologies, Inc. to focus on the developing LBS market. Prior to that, he founded Datumcom in 1995, which became the leading international supplier of vehicle-based positioning services and infrastructures. Isaias led the transition of Datumcom into the telematics field, where the company became a leader at the intersection of communications, computing, and vehicles. General Dynamics acquired his first venture, Datumtech, in 1997.

Isaias has raised over $40+ million in investment capital for his ventures, and is an active member in the South Florida entrepreneurial community. He sits on the advisory board of; Entrepreneurs Organization (EO), University of Miami and The Idea Center at Miami Dade College. Isaias holds Bachelors of Science and Masters of Science in Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering from The Ohio State University. 

Aubrey Thelen Aubrey Thelen, Head of Developer Relations, Nest Labs

Aubrey Thelen leads the team responsible for managing the growing community of Works with Nest developers. In her role, she also oversees product management for developer experience and tools for development on the Nest API. Through the Works with Nest program, Nest and third-party developers can work together to build meaningful product integrations for the home – like lights that automatically flash red when smoke is detected or washing machines that switch to energy-efficient modes when energy prices are at their highest.

Prior to Nest, Aubrey was an iTunes operations manager at Apple, Inc., where she was in charge of partner experience for the App Store as well as iTunes Music Store distribution tools. At Apple, she also led digital supply chain supporting the software and services behind the launch of products including iPhone, App Store, iPad, Mac App Store, in-app purchase, Game Center and Newsstand.

Aubrey earned her undergraduate degree at the University of California, San Diego. She lives in San Francisco, enjoying the great weather, food – and people – the city has to offer.

Parks Associates Analysts / Moderators

Tom Kerber Tom Kerber, Director, IoT Strategy, Parks Associates
Twitter ID: @TomAKerber
Website: http://www.ParksAssociates.com

Tom leads Parks Associates research in the areas of home controls, energy management, and home networks. Tom authors numerous reports on energy management and home controls covering the evolution of technology, partnership opportunities, and new business models. Tom’s work at Parks Associates includes managing consumer surveys that track trends and market opportunities and enable insightful evidence-based forecasting for energy, security, and home controls. Tom speaks frequently at key industry events, and his views are sought out by national press organizations and publications.

Tom has done extensive consulting with electric utilities operating in a variety of regulator structures and numerous firms within the smart home ecosystem. Recent utility engagements include defining the home area network roadmap for a California IOU, updating the consumer engagement strategy for a traditional vertically integrated IOU, providing consumer and industry analysis to refine EE and DR programs for an IOU in a restructured market, and providing insights on the evolution of the connected home for a large Midwest IOU. Tom has also led projects for many Fortune 500 companies, helping clients refine smart home strategies, develop scenarios of the future of the smart home market, enhance product roadmaps, and refine specific product features.

Prior to working at Parks Associates, Tom worked as director of engineering and director of product management in multiple industries. Tom began his career in the U.S. Navy nuclear power program on submarines. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the U.S. Naval Academy in systems engineering and a master's in software engineering from the University of Texas.

Brad Russell Brad Russell, Research Analyst, Parks Associates
Twitter ID: @bradrusselltech
Website: http://www.ParksAssociates.com

Brad Russell explores leading-edge issues in connected consumer electronics, robotics, IoT data privacy and security, and machine vision applications. He has a background in marketing communications, technology startups, and online media. Brad balances the art and science of marketing research to generate insights that lead to more astute business decision making and value-generating practices.

Brad received his BS degree in advertising and marketing from the University of Texas at Austin. He also earned MDiv and DMin degrees from two leading seminaries with concentrations in ethics and cross-cultural leadership.

Patrice Samuels Patrice Samuels, Senior Analyst, Parks Associates
Twitter ID: @PatriceatParks
Website: http://www.ParksAssociates.com

Patrice Samuels studies digital home technical support services across global markets, with a focus on market trends, business models, and provider strategies. In addition to exploring events and disruptions in the technical support space, she examines pay-TV and broadband services in North America and Europe, digital media, and digital music services.

Patrice earned her MBA from Texas A&M University at College Station and BSc. in Psychology from the University of the West Indies in Kingston, Jamaica.

INDUSTRY EXPERTISE: Television Services, Broadband Services, Technical Support Services, International Markets, Digital Music

Harry Wang Harry Wang, Sr. Director, Health & Mobile Product Research, Parks Associates
Twitter ID: @HarryatParks
Website: http://www.parksassociates.com

Harry Wang studies the consumer electronics and entertainment service industries with a focus on portable CE hardware, software, and associated applications and services. He is also the lead analyst for Parks Associates’ digital health research program. Harry has presented his research in numerous industry events including CES, Digital Hollywood, Photo Marketing Association Annual Show, American Telemedicine Association Annual Show, World Health Congress, and Parks Associates’ CONNECTIONS™ conferences.

Harry earned his MS degree in marketing research from the University of Texas at Arlington. He also holds an MBA degree in finance from Texas Christian University and a BA degree in international business from Guangdong University of Foreign Studies, P.R. China.

INDUSTRY EXPERTISE: Digital Health Products and Services, Portable and Mobile Access Platforms and Applications, Digital Imaging Products and Services