Disrupt the Disruptors

October 8, 2019 | 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Dallas Baptist University is pleased to announce our First Annual DBU Tech Symposium conference! The event will be centered around “Disrupt the Disruptors” and how disruptive technologies will influence smarter cities. Informing you about topics addressing Blockchain, Information Security, Artificial Intelligence, and Data Analytics, you will hear from a collection of internationally renowned speakers addressing these subjects. We welcome you and your colleagues to join us for this exciting event!


  • Early registration ends: Sept. 13 | $50
  • Regular registration ends: Sept. 27 | $75
  • Late registration ends: Oct. 8 | $100



Artificial Intelligence




Data Analytics


Information Security


8:30 - 9:45 a.m.

Networking, Registration, and Continental Breakfast

9:45 - 10:00 a.m.

Overview and Opening Remarks: DBU Dignitaries

10:00 - 10:40 a.m.

Opening Keynote: Jennifer Sanders: Executive Director, Dallas Innovation Alliance

10:50 - 11:30 a.m.

Breakout Session 1

11:45 a.m. - 12:45 p.m.

Lunch & Keynote: Mance Harmon: CEO and Co-Founder, Hedera Hashgraph

1:00 - 1:50 p.m.

Breakout Session 2

2:00 - 2:40 p.m.

Breakout Session 3

2:50 - 3:30 p.m.

Keynote: William Gordon: CEO, BlockQAI

3:30 - 4:10 p.m.

Keynote: Dave Copps: CEO, Hypergiant Sensory Services

4:10 - 4:15 p.m.

Closing Remarks

4:15 - 5:00 p.m.


  Blockchain AI & Big Data Information Security Convergence of Technology
10:50 - 11:30 a.m. Paige Kreiger Stephen Ellis Chad Thiemann  
1:00 - 1:50 p.m. Gurvinder Ahluwalia & Panel   Valmiki Mukherjee & Panel Richard Finn & Panel
2:00 - 2:40 p.m. Jon West   Valmiki Mukherjee & Harold Collum  

Keynote Speakers

Jennifer Sanders: Executive Director, Dallas Innovation Alliance

Sanders is co-founder and Executive Director of the Dallas Innovation Alliance (DIA), a public-private partnership dedicated to supporting the design and execution of a smart city plan for Dallas. Jennifer was featured in the Dallas Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 and Top Women in Technology, State Scoop’s Top Women in Technology, the Tech Week 100, and the Dallas 500. In 2019, she received the UN Day Global Leadership Award for the DIA's work advancing the UN Sustainable Development Goals in the category of Goal 9 (Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure).

Mance Harmon: CEO and Co-Founder, Hedera Hashgraph

Harmon is an experienced technology executive and entrepreneur with more than 20 years of strategic leadership experience in multi-national corporations, government agencies, and high-tech startups. His prior experience includes serving as the Head of Architecture and Labs at Ping Identity, Founder / CEO of two tech startups, the senior executive for product security at a $1.7B revenue organization, program manager for a very-large-scale software program for the Missile Defense Agency, the Course Director for Cybersecurity at the US Air Force Academy, and research scientist in Machine Learning at Wright Laboratory.

William Gordon: CEO, BlockQAI

Gordon possesses both public and private board experience, has served on numerous audit committees and has chaired many other committees, including the Nomination and Corporate Governance Committee, Compensation Committee, and Strategy Committee. Gordon is certified in Cyber Security and has led some of the largest technology organizations in the world, having operating experience in 124 countries.

Dave Copps: CEO, Hypergiant Sensory Services

Copps is known locally and internationally as a futurist, technologist, and visionary on the role that emerging technologies will play in transforming markets and the world. He founded, launched, and sold two technology companies that have placed machine learning and artificial intelligence in hundreds of companies around the world. In 2017, Copps was recognized as Emerging Company CEO of the Year in Texas while serving as CEO of Brainspace Corporation which, was acquired by Cyxtera in 2017.

Blockchain Speakers

Jon West: Founder, Vercey Blockchain Consulting

West possesses 25+ years of software product development experience as a software engineer, architect, and global technology and business executive. Most of his career has focused on creating cloud-based SaaS products used by lawyers and accountants within professional firms and large corporate departments.

Gurvinder Singh Ahluwalia: Founder and CEO, Digital Twin Labs

Ahluwalia is the former CTO of IBM’s Blockchain-IoT-Cloud unit for North America. Over his enterprise and venture career, he stewarded the industry, clients, public sector, and open source communities through recent waves of technologies, from the internet to the web, to mobile, to the cloud, and now to blockchain.

Paige Kreiger: Digital Engagement Program Manager - Blockchain Platform, IBM

Krieger is the Blockchain Platform Digital Engagement Program Manager at IBM. She worked on the IBM Blockchain business development team for the past two years. Krieger strives to connect innovators & business leaders, equipping them with the technological tools and expertise needed to accelerate the adoption of blockchain for business.

Scott Mairs: Gartner Executive Partner - Dallas

Scott is a proven business and technology leader with over 25 years of executive leadership, strategy execution, and performance management experience. His focus over the last several years has been creating business value with blockchain and distributed ledger technology. He is a frequent advisor and speaker on blockchain solutions in financial services, consumer products, energy, and crypto-collectibles market.

AI & Big Data Speakers

Stephen Ellis

Stephen has ten years of experience in research strategy and the application of emerging technologies for investors and enterprises. Stephen is the former Director of the North Texas Blockchain Alliance, where he led the cultivation of the Blockchain and Cryptocurrency competencies among software developers, C-level executives, and private investment advisors.

Information Security Speakers

Chad Thiemann: Privacy Director, CVS Health

Thiemann has a combined work experience of 30+ years in the IT sector working for different companies such as CVS Health, CVS/Caremark, Schering-Plough Pharmaceuticals, Arthur Andersen, and the US Army. He currently serves as the Privacy Director at CVS Health overlooking CVS’s privacy policies and procedures that comply with regulatory privacy obligations.

Shawn Tuma: Cybersecurity & Data Privacy Attorney, Spencer Fane, LLP

Tuma is an experienced cybersecurity and data privacy attorney and partner at Spencer Fane, LLP, where he serves as Co-Chair of the firm's Cybersecurity & Data Privacy Practice Group. He has practiced cybersecurity and data privacy law since 1999, so he is one of the most experienced and well-respected cybersecurity and data privacy law attorneys in the United States.

Harold Collum: Founder & Executive Director, Cyber Future Foundation; CEO, US Data Mining; Advisory Board, Ponemon Institute RIM Council

Collum is a man of uncompromising integrity. He is scrupulous to the core, sincere, and hard-working. He possesses a powerful intellect balanced with common sense, excellent people skills, and keen observation skills; he is able to see the big picture while not dismissing the smaller details. Collum is a tireless optimist, a champion of Truth, and a ‘true believer.’

Valmiki (Val) Mukherjee: Co-Chair Davos Cyber Future Dialogue, Cyber Future Foundation; Executive Director Cyber Advisory Services, EY

Mukherjee is a globally-recognized expert in the cyber and cloud security industry with a focus on innovation and collaboration to address the information security needs of the future. He is a leader in the Global Cloud Security Alliance community, founder of North Texas Regional Cloud Security Alliance Organization and also a member of NIST Standard Development Organization efforts.

Convergence of Technology Speakers

Ed Hightower: Director of Partner and Major Accounts, ObjectSpectrum, LLC

Hightower is a highly successful technologist, executive, sales engineer, public speaker, and business development manager with over 25 years of experience and expertise in wireless, wireless data, machine-to-machine (M2M), Internet of Things (IoT), and Artificial Intelligence domains. He is a Subject Matter Expert (SME) in various Low Power Wide Area Network protocols such as "Weightless," Random Phase Multiple Access (RPMA), and knowledgeable of Artificial Intelligence, cellular, telecommunications, computers, software applications, and embedded technologies.

Richard Finn: Lead Product Marketing Manager, IoT Solutions AT&T

For over 20 years, Finn led efforts to innovate within established industries looking to leverage a more connected world. A self-taught programmer, He started his company at 19 years old – folding it into a larger one where they built early Internet applications for several years. Finn made a career combining technical acumen with a drive to use fresh concepts and disruptive technologies in tackling business problems.

Adam Perschke: CEO, NOVAM

Perschke specializes in emerging technology innovation and has provided technology innovation guidance to global entities such as the U.S. Department of Defense National Security Technology Accelerator, Amazon, and the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International.