Leading, Not Following: IT’s Shifting Role in Innovation

Tuesday, September 27th, 5:15 PM

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Tuesday, September 27th, 2011
Networking Time: 5:15pm
Panel Discussion: 6:00pm
Location: WMU Downtown GR Campus (Google | Bing)

Post Networking: Tavern on the Sq.
Maps: Google | Bing
Networking: 7:00pm – 8:00pm

Register: Registration is closed for this event

Moving from cost center to a center of innovation…

Traditionally, IT has been seen as a support function in most businesses. Even today, the IT department is often supporting innovation instead of being given a chance to lead innovation within an organization. But the role of IT is much more important, and the best-run organizations have recognized that they can’t separate IT from “the business.”

Given these challenges, and the politics inherent in all organizations, how can IT leaders drive change and innovation? And how do we as a community convince other business leaders to stop seeing IT as an “add-on” to real business activities and start embracing its role in marketing, communications, product delivery, and every other bottom-line activity a company does?

Featured Panelists

  • Dave Baarman – Director of Advanced Technologies from Fulton Innovations
    Dave Baarman is the Director of Advanced Technologies at Fulton Innovation, and the lead inventor of eCoupled™ intelligent wireless power technology. Baarman is responsible for the technical supervision and development of eCoupled™ technology and other Fulton Innovation technologies.

    He joined Amway in 1997, where he first pioneered the use of intelligent inductive coupling in the eSpring™ Water Purifier. With over 20 years of leadership experience in the development of consumer and industrial products, Baarman took the technology behind eSpring™ and developed it to power everyday technologies, including consumer electronics, with a diverse range of power needs. Baarman’s efforts have lead to national and global recognition of eCoupled™ technology.

  • Stuart Berman – Security Architect, Steelcase
    Stuart has been active in a number of innovation office efforts including recent research into a 10 year view of IT future and how the cloud can impact Steelcase. Stuart has also been involved in community efforts such as moving the Grand Rapids Public Museum to the cloud two years ago. He received his Masters in Computer Information Systems from GVSU and previously worked for IBM in Los Angeles before moving to West Michigan in 1995.
  • Kevin O’Halla – Chief Information Officer, Grand Rapids Community College
    Kevin brings over 25 years experience in the information technology arena. Kevin’s hands on experience in many areas including programming, network design, web site implementations, data base administration, and desktop support. He is currently the Chief Information Officer at Grand Rapids Community College. Having spent his entire career in higher education, he has become intimately familiar with is getting the most out of dwindling budgets.

Moderated By

  • Mac FowlerInetSolution
    Mac and his team at InetSolution work to deliver understanding and technology around these trends with clients ranging from small start ups to top financial institutions and fortune 500 companies throughout the country with products such as Secure File Exchange and Authly. Mac is a long time active participant in the West Michigan business and technology communities through aimWest, .NET User Group, GRWebDev and an original co-founder of The Factory, Grand Rapids first coworking space.You can connect with mac on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Post-Networking

Join us after the presentations as we bounce down to the Tavern on the Sq. for networking and to continue the conversation.

Register: Registration is closed for this event

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