Guest Speakers at Gartner Symposium/ITxpo 2018

Guest Keynote Interview

Ed Catmull


President & Co-founder

Pixar Animation Studios

Guest Keynote Interview: Ed Catmull, President, Pixar Animation and Disney Animation

Ed Catmull is co-founder of Pixar Animation Studios (along with Steve Jobs and John Lasseter) and president of Pixar Animation and Disney Animation. Ed has received five Academy Awards, and — as a computer scientist — he has contributed to many important developments in computer graphics. He is the author of Creativity, Inc., which Forbes has said “just might be the best business book ever written”. This keynote interview will delve into Catmull’s rules for embracing the complexity that accompanies great creative output, how to take smart risks, the importance of experimentation in times of uncertainty and how Catmull successfully addressed the challenges that came with becoming the president of Disney Animation Studios.


Join us for this conversation on the many aspects of IT leadership and transformation.

Guest Keynote

Linda Kaplan Thaler


Business Leader, Author, Communications Expert

Grit to Great — How Perseverance, Passion, and Pluck Take You from Ordinary to Extraordinary


In her Grit to Great lectures, Linda Kaplan Thaler tackles a topic that is close to her heart, one she believes is the real secret to her own success and in the careers of so many people she knows and has met. New research proves that the real secret to success isn’t some rarefied “It” factor, it’s the “grit” factor. And each and every one of us can possess it. 

In this keynote, Linda Kaplan Thaler will discuss:  

Why those who develop and possess the character traits of grit (Guts, Resilience, Initiative and Tenacity) outperform individuals with genius IQ’s, virtuoso talent, unlimited financial resources or a private school education. Individuals with high grit quotient do better in school, work, the playing field, in relationships and life. Her inspiring message is that grit is something we all can embrace and develop whether you are nine or ninety.

Rob Geraghty

Executive Coach

Expert in Influence and Presenting

Guest Keynote: Stand Up and Be a Leader — How to Increase your Personal Credibility and Authority


You need to collaborate with a wide range of stakeholders: board members, peers, your team and vendors. But how do you come across as a leader? How do you boost your own credibility and authority when communicating? 

This session will show you:

Practical steps to help boost your standing with the people you need to work with. This is a highly practical and interactive keynote with tangible take-aways for you to put into practice straight away. 

Andreas Ekström

Author, Journalist

Digital Futurist

Guest Keynote: Seven Ways to Own the World


"Seven ways to own the world" is an up to date exposé of seven key future digital issues that we need to think about more and understand better, to be positioned right for the next five to ten years. No matter who you are or what you do – this concerns you both as a professional and as a citizen. 

This session will help you:

To touch upon the future of finance, the future of digital identity, and the democracy factor hidden in the technology we build.

CIO Lunch

Brian Cox

Experimental Physicist


The Importance of Curiosity


Arguably the UK's best known experimental physicist, Professor Brian Cox's books and TV programs have been read and watched around the world and credited with making science engaging and accessible to millions. With his down-to-earth, likeable enthusiasm, Brian is frequently labelled a 'rock star scientist'. Once the keyboard player for D:Ream, he has come a long way to his position as Professor of Particle Physics at Manchester University and a key part of the ATLAS and the CERN Large Hadron Collider projects.


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In this keynote, Brian Cox will:

Engage, inform and entertain, using awe-inspiring images from the depths of the universe as well as his trademark infectious enthusiasm for his subject. Alongside the story of life, the universe and everything, Brian argues that science can unite the world in an attempt to discover our shared origins and answer long-held mysteries.

Cheryl Cran

Author, Consultant, Leadership speaker, CEO

Evolutionary Business Solutions Inc.

The Future of Work Is Now – Are You Ready?


What will leaders and their teams have to do to thrive today and beyond to the year 2030? Today’s challenges include ongoing global change, technological innovation and fast changing workplace dynamics. Employee engagement, creating future ready leaders, attracting and retaining top talent are all elements that are rapidly changing and impacting the way we work and how we need to change to meet the challenges of the future workplace today.


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This keynote will provide:

Researched global business insights, thought provoking, creative, leading edge ideas and strategies on how leaders can take immediate action to increase team buy in, adaptability and execution NOW as we head towards 2030..

Nick Fry

Former CEO for Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula

One Team

Performance Improvement in Formula One


Nick Fry, former owner of the all-conquering Mercedes F1 team, will talk about how to win in the competitive world of top level sport and how the same strategies can be used in any high technology data driven business. Mercedes F1 designs a new car every year with 10% or more performance than the year before and then re-designs the same number of parts again during the racing season in pursuit of success.This requires strong leadership, clear objectives, seamless communication, relentless innovation and perfect teamwork between different activities in a high pressure environment.


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In this keynote, Nick Fry will explain:

The processes behind the fast change and rapid decision making that has characterised Mercedes domination of modern Formula 1. 

Join the thought-leaders.