First Look: Evanta’s Fall CDAO Executive Summits

Comunity Blog
Written by Megan Woodruff

OCTOBER 4, 2022

After a successful spring season, Evanta’s CDAO communities are looking ahead to the fall for their next opportunity to meet in-person. Almost all of our communities were able to meet in person earlier this year, but we’re excited to bring our Houston and Toronto CDAO Communities together to network and collaborate with peers for a full-day summit in December.

For some data and analytics leaders, this spring was their first time returning in-person to an Evanta gathering since pre-pandemic times. Here is what some participants told us about the experience.

I enjoyed the time being back in-person immensely. I look forward to the next in-person event. You get much better information when talking one-on-one or with groups of fellow industry leaders.”

Returning onsite after two and a half years of being in shelter was the greatest feeling. Made us value the person-to-person relationships even more! Many thanks for getting us all back together.”


As we continue to take the pulse of the communities we serve, we’ve identified data governance and data-driven culture as the top two CDAO priorities, both in North America and Europe. And in our conversations with senior data and analytics leaders, talent has continued to emerge as another priority. 

To bridge the gap between employer needs and prospective employee expectations, agendas will feature an interactive Q&A around data talent. This session, first featured at the Boston CDAO Executive Summit, will bring together senior data leaders as well as D&A university students. At the Boston summit in June, students from MIT’s Sloan Master of Business Analytics program had the chance to share the challenges and successes of their hands-on D&A experience as well as what they are searching for from their next employer. In turn, it gave summit attendees the opportunity to learn why job listings are going unanswered, and it provided insight into the culture they need to cultivate to attract prospective employees.

As we finalize the agendas, here are some additional sessions Evanta CDAOs are looking forward to attending this season:

Chicago CDAO Executive Summit

Prasannal Nithyanandam, Head of Data and Analytics for Volkwagen Group of America, has a rich background in versatile data transformations. On the November 29th Chicago CDAO agenda, she will share her journey in spearheading an enterprise transformation to the cloud.

New York CDAO Executive Summit

For this summit on November 30th, Glenn Hofmann, Chief Analytics Officer for New York Life, and Kendell Timmers, SVP & Head of Data and Insights for the New York Times will come together to share their successes and learnings around MLOps. Hofmann and Timmers will be addressing the must-haves for any successful machine learning (ML) team and how to ensure the production deployment of ML models succeed.

This summit will also feature Martha Asselin, Senior Director of Business Analytics for LKQ Corporation. Asselin has worked to successfully build LKQ’s D&A program from the ground up, but for this session, she’ll highlight how digital twin models are helping to fund future investments in advanced analytics.

Houston CDAO Executive Summit

On December 6th, the Houston CDAO Community will be returning in-person for the first time since 2019. The group is excited to welcome Wall Street Journal and USA Today best-selling author Dr. Daren Martin. His book, A Company of Owners, delivers proven insights and solutions he uses to create ownership cultures in some of the biggest companies in the world.

Atlanta CDAO Executive Summit

In Atlanta on December 7th, Matt Kott, the VP of Global Data and Analytics for Carter’s, will bring his expertise to the agenda. Specifically, Kott will be sharing how he and his team defined an analytic process to create a strong foundation around self-service data models. 

San Francisco CDAO Executive Summit

In San Francisco, the CDAO and CISO from Blue Shield California have worked together to develop a data governance strategy that minimizes risk while fostering innovation. For this session on December 8th, Zoher Karu and Eddie Borrero will come together to share how they’re aligning incentives and initiatives across their security and data teams.

Also on the agenda, Danielle Crop, SVP & Chief Data Officer at Albertsons will share her journey to establish clean, trustworthy and shareable data. During the session, Crop will discuss how she’s taking a modern approach to her data governance framework to tear down silos and build a data-driven culture.

Toronto CDAO Executive Summit

Like in San Francisco, the agenda for the Toronto CDAO Executive Summit on December 14th will also feature C-level collaboration, specifically highlighting the partnership of Apotex’s CIO and Head of Data. Medhanie Tekeste, CIO, and Aida Tahiri, Head of Data, will share how they’re working together to create a culture that centers around data. 

At Evanta, all programs and gatherings are created “by and for” the CDAO communities we serve. These sessions are just a little peek of what’s to come. Please follow the links within this article to register or find an upcoming gathering here. We hope to see you in-person this fall.


Megan Woodruff headshot

Megan Woodruff

Associate Content Director at Evanta, a Gartner Company

by CDAOs, for CDAOs

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