May 12 - 13, 2020
Past Speakers (2018)
Global Category Lead - Travel & Expense
Shawn is a Global Category Leader in IBM Procurement Services. He brings extensive experience in all aspects of strategic sourcing, supplier management, complex analytics, technology applications, negotiations, contracting, implementations, and process optimization. Shawn is recognized as a leader in driving significant cost reductions and process efficiencies for a diverse portfolio of global clients as his holistic approach delivers value and direct bottom line impact.
Shawn has 20+ years of direct and indirect supply chain experience, encompassing all travel and expense sub-categories including agency, air, rental car, hotel, meetings and events, ground transportation, rail, and commercial card . In addition, he has experience in marketing and communications subcategories including public relations, market research, digital, agency, media, and creative design. He is a leader in transformation, business process redesign, and deployment of innovative technology. He has worked with global clients and in diverse industries including electronics, health care, consumer and commercial products, automotive, technology, and beauty.
Shawn holds a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration from Luther College. He’s a member of the Global Business Travel Association and a certified PMP.
Senior Research Engineer
Pawan Chowdhary is a Senior Researcher at IBM Almaden Research located at San Jose, California. Pawan joined IBM US Research in 2004 and helped develop visual modeling tool to automate data warehouse generation as part of the larger Model Driven Business Transformation project that later became commercial offering. Pawan’s major interest is in solving complex problems with backed by analytics. He led several projects such as IBM Pricing Analytics tool (IPAT), Procurement Analytics and next generation of supply chain management solution (SCSM) to name a few.
Currently he has been working to transform the business travel that impact both employee and sourcing side by developing a solution call IBM Travel Manager (ITM). In addition, Pawan has keen interest on sensors and IoT, and its usage in improving the social aspect with projects around Eldercare, cognitive nose and smart home. Over the years, Pawan has published several papers and patents and was received several awards inside and outside of IBM for his work.
Global Director, Travel Meetings & Payments
Vice President & Chief Procurement Officer
National Basketball Association
Joe is the functional head of the NBA’s Global Procurement Group. His top priority is to develop and deliver innovative and a best in class procurement operation that focuses on securing favorable pricing, terms and conditions for goods and services that are required to run the business of basketball. Joe has created an internal procurement consultancy which includes spend analytics, strategic sourcing and procure to pay and which has set a protocol for how procurement is now done at the NBA.
Joe has over 25 years of procurement and management consulting experience with companies like: Price Waterhouse, Deloitte Consulting, Bristol Myers-Squibb and NYU Langone Medical Center. In 2016, Joe received the EPIC lifetime procurement achievement award and was honored at the ProcureCon East conference that winter. Joe has a B.S./Supply Chain Management and holds professional certifications in Executive Coaching and Emotional Intelligence.
Chief Procurement Officer
Hub International Limited
Jay brings more than 20 years of experience in procurement, strategic sourcing, supplier diversity, and real estate. Most recently, he was Vice President of Procurement and Real Estate for Orbitz. Prior to that, Jay held various procurement-related roles at Aon, BankOne (now JPMorgan Chase), Waste Management, and A.T.Kearney.
Jay earned a Bachelor of Arts, with Honors, from Northwestern University, and a Masters of Business Administration from Kellogg / Northwestern University.
Head of Global Travel, Fleet, and Meetings
Edgewell Personal Care
Kelly's category background includes experience in operations, sales, marketing, multi-national corporate program design, development and deployment of global RFP’s, technology implementation, Business Intelligence, and collaborative change management. She has honed a keen eye for contract parsing, SOW definition, and the development of meaningful SLA’s.
Kelly holds a Global Travel Professional certification from the Global Business Travel Association and has served on executive advisory boards for T&E professional associations, international airports, and two non-profit foundations.
Head of Global Corporate Programs
Hewlett Packard Enterprise
Sean-Michael leads HPE’s Corporate Program’s team. He is tasked with leading the global program design and operational delivery of a comprehensive portfolio of Travel, Fleet, Compliance and Sales Enablement (Mutual Value Program) programs. Sean-Michael’s teams are focused on delivering effective policies, business insights, optimized demand/budget management for our internal stakeholders and supporting our HPE Go-To-Market sales motions.
Prior to this role, Sean-Michael led the Global Travel, Meetings & Corporate Credit Card team. Since 2014 his team drove out greater than 60% of HPE’s global travel and entertainmnent spend. His team was able to achieve this with elevated internal alignment, enhanced policy compliance and stringent oversight of travel behavior. Sean-Michael’s team has dedicated FY15-17 to driving all travel, meetings and events related separation efforts in the world’s biggest ever corporate IT separations.
Sean-Michael joined HP in 2010 as the Mutual Value Program (MVP) leader. Prior to joining HP, Sean-Michael held business development, sales and marketing roles in the commercial real estate sector.
Sean-Michael received his Bachelor in Science (Marketing) from Santa Clara University. He is a huge soccer fan, whether it is coaching, watching or playing. Sean-Michael lives with his wife, Brenna, and children, Keane and Éire, in Roseville, CA.
CPM, Senior Commodity Manager, Travel/ Living & Fleet- Global Operations Sourcing
Global Travel Manager
Senior Procurement Manager, US Travel Program
Daryl Keiper has been the Sr. Manager of Genentech Inc.’s US travel program for the past two years. He oversees a travel program of more than $275M in total travel spend and his responsibilities include traveler engagement, policy development, vendor management (including air, ground, GDS, online booking tools and emerging technologies) and is a member of Roche’s Global Travel Counsel serving on the Air, Ground, TMC and Technology subcommittees.
Daryl has more than 23 years of experience in the travel industry including Travel Manager for Agilent Technologies, Director of Account Management for CWT, Airline Consulting for Advito and Industry Relations at BCD Travel.
Head of Global Travel, Meetings & Fleet Management
At the very beginning, Geert started at American Express Card in authorisations. Moving later to American Express Travel, Geert went through Sales and Operation roles but during the last years with American Expess focused on Relationship Management heading up a team of 20 account managers across the Benelux.
In 2007 he then changed from a supplier to a client position starting at UCB’s HQ as Associate Director, Global Purchasing Travel & Fleet. Through the introduction of the plans to globalize the travel program (and fleet) including one global policy, one TMC, one EMS, he assumed the Director of Global Travel & Fleet Management role, incorporating not only the purchasing side but also the organizational part in close collaboration with internal stakeholders such as HR, Finance, and H. S. & E.
With a strong focus on data-driven decision (from Noise to Signal) and a constant search on how to better integrate solutions to enhance the traveler experience (from Task to Value), constant innovation and improvement is the main focus for UCB’s travel and fleet program.
Future plans include a stronger integration of different distribution channels for travel suppliers, and the introduction of a UCB travel app that will focus on offering our travelers a true one-stop shop including booking, on-travel assistance, and expense management.
Executive Director, Global Sourcing, Travel Category Lead
Time Warner, Inc.
Director, Global Travel
Makiko Barrett is currently the Director of Global Travel for Oath, based in Sunnyvale, CA. Makiko’s career spans over 20 years managing corporate travel, having worked as a travel manager for various internet, semiconductor and pharmaceutical companies, with a background in travel operations.
Makiko has been very active in the business travel industry. She is currently serving the Silicon Valley Business Travel Association as their Vice President.
Makiko holds a B.A. in English from the Aoyama Gakuin University in Tokyo, Japan. She is originally from Japan but was raised in Houston, TX and Yokohama, Japan. When she is not at work, she is at her son’s soccer games or busy rescuing cats for the local Humane Society.
Director, Travel Sourcing
Global Category Manager - Meetings & Events, and Hotel
Courtney brings over 20 years’ of global experience in procurement, contracting, operations and marketing to her role as Category Manager Global Meetings & Events and Global Hotel at Chevron.
Courtney joined Chevron in 2009 and is responsible for creating a Strategic Meetings Management program from the ground-up and implementing it enterprise-wide at Chevron, as well as managing Chevron’s corporate hotel program. Her role leverages spend between the two categories, creates efficiencies, and drives value. Prior to Chevron, she was at Autodesk, Inc., in a procurement role supporting meetings & events.
Before her corporate experience, Courtney worked on the agency side with Carlson Marketing Group, and more recently served as Director of Marketing and Procurement for Woodberry Events, Inc. (now ITA Group). This unique blend of corporate and agency experience has proven beneficial in strengthening supplier relationships, and designing solutions that benefit both the corporation as well as her internal clients.
Courtney earned a degree in Public Relations and Marketing from Gonzaga University, and dedicated to furthering her education, she completed her certificate in Supply Chain Management through Arizona State University’s W. P. Carey School of business. She has participated on many hotel advisory boards, frequently spoken at industry events, and has been recognized for her achievements as the recipient of industry awards.
Director, Global Travel
Marsh & McLennanCompanies, Inc.
Travel Manager – Americas
Cognizant Technology Solutions
Director, Global Travel & Events
Cindy’s career in the travel industry began over 30 years ago. She has held various travel management company and business travel leadership positions.
Currently, she serves as the Director of Global Travel and Events at Kiewit Corporation, a FORTUNE® 500 company and one of the largest and most respected construction and engineering organizations in North America. The company had revenues of $9 billion in 2016 and a $60 million multi-national travel budget.
Her Responsibilities include contract negotiation and relationship management of TMC, airline, car rental and hotel spend, selection and implementation of travel technology tools including the online booking tool and meeting program software. Travel policy design and compliance monitoring, along with overseeing the direction of the strategic meetings management program. A primary focus also includes traveler safety and security and travel program communication, continual traveler satisfaction and cost saving initiatives.
Cindy serves on several travel advisory boards including Delta Airlines Corporate Advisory, Travel and Transport Advisory, Vision Travel Advisory and speaks frequently on various travel industry topics.
She has been recognized for her commitment to the business travel industry by GBTA as a member of The Masters Honors program. The Kiewit meeting program was awarded the SMM Start Award by Cvent in 2016 for SMM Program of the Year. She works with the TeamMates organization mentoring at risk youth.
Neil Hammond, partner as GoldSpring Consulting has 15 years’ experience in the travel industry as a buyer and consultant. Neil started his career with Schlumberger and has worked in the United Kingdom, France and the USA whilst travelling extensively during his career. Neil held various roles in Manufacturing, Supply Chain and Quality Assurance supplying oilfield equipment to the field locations before becoming Global Travel Manager for Schlumberger where he implemented the $360 million travel program in 40 countries.
After leaving Schlumberger, Neil joined Advito as Director leading a team of professional consultants engaged in Air and Hotel sourcing projects to corporate clients.
In 2013 Neil founded SmartKapps (now acquired by GoldSpring Consulting) and developed technology to support sourcing projects for Corporate Air and Hotel with a focus on streamlining the process for corporate buyers. Air Sourcing Manager ™ and Hotel Optimization Manager ™, enable GoldSpring’s consultants to manage sourcing projects and handle all the complexities of airline and hotel sourcing engagements in a more efficient manner with reduced project timescales.
Neil joined GoldSpring Consulting in 2014 as partner because he believed that the vision and opportunity created by the founders would be a perfect fit with the technology developed by SmartKapps. Neil was also impressed with the professionalism and integrity of the Colleen, Mark and Will having worked with all them in previous roles.
Neil has also conducted independent travel consulting projects and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Physics from Salford University.
Director, Strategic Sourcing
Manager, Associate Travel Program
After graduating, Ruben worked for five years at FROSCH, a boutique full-service travel agency, where he started as an Associate Account Manager in the corporate travel division, but quickly worked his way up the ranks to eventually oversee its Corporate Account Management department.
Ruben then moved from the agency side to the buyer side of the business. For the past year, he has worked at TD Ameritrade administering the T&E program and managing the company’s relationships with travel and credit card vendors.
Senior Manager, Global Travel & Supply Chain
Jo Ellen Geurts is a Senior Manager of Corporate Supply Chain and Global Travel at KLA-Tencor Corporation located in Milpitas, California. She is currently responsible for Supplier Management, Contracts Management and Negotiations, Global Travel Management, and Reporting.
Prior to her relocation to Oklahoma, Jo Ellen was the Director of Corporate Procurement at KLA-Tencor, where she was responsible for all Indirect Procurement Operations and led the offshore outsourcing of KLA-Tencor's Finance, HR, Procurement and IT functions. Under her leadership, the procurement organization obtained a company- wide reputation for delivering extremely competent professional services matched only by a customer service performance level that set the standard for the company.
Jo Ellen has 25+ years of experience in both direct and indirect procurement and has held director and senior procurement manager positions at Applied Materials, Intevac, Tandem Computers, and Tellabs. In 2007, Jo Ellen was presented the YWCA Twin Award which honors Silicon Valley Executive Women who exemplify excellence in their positions. In 2008, she was recognized as a “Top Performing Woman" by KLA-Tencor.
She has an undergraduate degree from Valparaiso University and a Master of Business Administration from Lewis University.
Senior Manager, Global Travel
Travel & Expense Manager
Anjela Evangelista is the Travel and Expense Manager of Twitter, based in San Francisco. She oversees global travel, expense reporting and corporate card programs. Prior to joining Twitter in 2015, Anjela was at Salesforce working on the T&E team, managing the global card program for 7 years. Although she has only been in the travel industry for a few years, she's built an innovative travel program that delivers a seamless travel experience while meeting cost savings objectives.
Manager Strategic Procurement
Fresenius Medical Care North America
David is a Procurement Professional with over 8 years of experience creating a competitive advantage for organizations through strategic sourcing. David graduated from Assumption College with a Master’s in Business Administration. He has worked for global Fortune 500 companies across industries including insurance, technology, and healthcare.
David has expertise managing multimillion dollar spend across categories such as Travel, Marketing, IT, and Professional Services. In his current role as the Manager of Strategic Procurement for a top healthcare company, David establishes and executes the category strategy for a global travel spend of more than $125M.
A life long New Englander, David lives in Massachusetts with his wife and dog. In his spare time, he mentors urban youth to empower them to reach their profession potential.
Laura is the Travel Manager at Gentex Corporation. During her final year at Grand Valley State University Laura started at Gentex as the Travel Intern. Six years later, Laura is moving the department forward looking towards innovative ways to create a desirable travel experience within the scope of the business at Gentex.
Laura oversees all commercial travel in addition to the general aviation side of the business. Laura works with travel suppliers and numerous departments to ensure continued improvement to the department.
Global Travel Commodity Manager
With over 30 years of Travel Industry experience, Sandra joined VSP Global in 2016 as the Global Travel Manager to build a comprehensive, value add travel program. Joining VSP provided a transition from her extensive career on the agency side over to customer buyer side.
Sandra had been with Carlson Wagonlit Travel for eighteen years prior, working both on the operations side, as well as account management. Through her excellent leadership skills, she created strong partnerships with a diverse portfolio of clients, resulting in high performing, cost effective travel programs.
Since joining VSP, Sandra has successfully consolidated multiple online booking tools, realizing an 80% adoption in less than one year. She also has a significant focus on creating awareness around the importance and opportunities with strategic meetings management for VSP. In 2017, she and her team conducted a series of M&E Summits, expanding the enterprise wide M&E “community”.
Sandra is a Six Sigma green belt and just recently completed the Certified Sourcing Professional program. Through her collaborative, energetic, and client-focused attitude, Sandra is passionate about delivering relevant value and building strong partnerships.
Meetings & Travel Procurement Manager
Director of Strategic Partnerships
Heather heads strategic partnerships for GBTA, bringing nearly 20 years of corporate travel management experience. Global Business Travel Association is the world’s premier business travel and meetings organization headquartered in Washington, D.C. area with operations on six continents. GBTA’s 7,000-plus members manage more than $345 billion of global business travel and meetings expenditures annually. GBTA delivers world-class education, events, research, advocacy and media to a growing global network of more than 28,000 travel professionals.
Prior to joining GBTA, Heather spent 12 years as the Director of Global Travel, Expense, Events & Facilities for David’s Bridal (largest bridal retailer) where she took their travel and expense program fully online and made major contributions to their financial goals. She has also held various management and leadership roles on the supplier side of corporate travel with Rosenbluth International, eCLIPSE Advisors, Orbitz for Business and Egencia.
Head of Business Travel Agencies
Amadeus North America
Jay is responsible for the retention, growth, and conversion of business travel agencies in North America. Jay’s deep and broad knowledge of both the industry’s operational challenges and emerging technology capabilities creates a consultative approach to the market whereby Amadeus solutions can empower agency strategy.
Before moving into this role in 2015, Jay was the head of corporate product and innovation, where he drove Amadeus’ product and platform strategy to help corporate customers increase revenue and boost profits through focused business solutions, innovation, development and technology-infused change. Prior to joining Amadeus, Jay held several senior leadership positions at a global TMC.
Vice President, Business Development
A 25+year veteran of the travel and travel management services industries, Chris Froelich is responsible for educating the corporate travel community about the concept of managing dining spend – the third- largest expense category after air and hotel – and bringing new clients onto the Dinova platform.
Chris started his career as a partner in BPF Travel, a start-up that grew into the fourth largest travel agency in the U.S. in five years. American Express acquired BPF Travel and Chris served American Express in a number of prominent roles, including director of business travel operations, VP/GM of membership travel services, and VP of supplier relations for Europe. Later in his career, he also was CEO of Happy Vacations and Wall Street Journal Travel, two leisure-oriented national travel brands.
Chris holds a BA degree from Assumption College and an MBA from Pepperdine University, and resides in New Jersey.
Ron is the founder and CEO of Bizly, the next-generation corporate platform for managing meetings and events.
Prior to Bizly, Ron was a venture capitalist for 15 years, most recently the founder of Jina Ventures. He was an early advisor to MakeMyTrip, assisting the company in its formative rise to become the largest online travel company in India. Ron has invested in over a dozen technology companies, with several successful IPOs and two strategic acquisitions by Google. Ron was an on-air contributor on CNBC's "Trading the Globe" for three years.
Ron has his MBA from NYU Stern and lives in New York City.
Cees Batenburg is responsible for determining the company’s financial needs, overseeing its forecasting and budgeting process, and creating and maintaining its capital structure. Prior to his current position, Cees worked as Senior Vice President, Global Accounting, Controlling and Treasury, responsible for BCD Travel’s finance function globally, overseeing banking relationships and involved in mergers & acquisitions and tax matters.
In his 10 years with the company he also has successfully managed and contributed to forecasting, cash management, year-end closings, re-financings, accounting technology implementations and strategic planning.
Prior to joining BCD Travel in 2007, he served as an assistant auditor at PricewaterhouseCoopers, servicing a diverse portfolio of customers, both listed and privately owned.
Executive Vice President, Global Sales & Marketing
Jorge heads up BCD Travel’s sales and retention activity in the Americas, which includes both North and Latin America. He also manages employees and client programs from California to New York. He’s spent 18 years in leadership roles, overseeing operations and account management, business development, budgeting and profitability. With more than 35 years of industry experience, Jorge applies hard-won lessons to the great benefit of corporate travel buyers—whether mid-sized or large-market and across a wide range of industries.
President & CEO
James has more than 20 years of experience in the travel industry with proven success in CEO, M&A and Business Development roles within global startups and Fortune 500 companies. Prior to joining Yapta, James was CEO of EZYield.com, Inc. where he was responsible for orchestrating the sale of the company to TravelClick. Earlier in his career, James was CEO and General Manager of Moneydirect, an international joint venture between Sabre Inc. (USA) and Amadeus IT (Spain) that processed over $2.5 billion in travel payment transactions annually. Prior to Moneydirect, he spent more than a decade at Sabre Holdings where he served as VP of New Business Ventures, among other roles within the organization. James is active in the Washington Technology Industry Association (WTIA), and was named one of the Top 25 Most Influential Executives in the Business Travel Industry for 2013.