8 Must-Attend Sessions at Upcoming CIO Summits

Community Blog
Written by Katie O’Reilly

MAY 7, 2024

The first Evanta CIO Executive Summits of 2024 are just around the corner! This year, our Governing Body members told us their top priorities are cybersecurity strategies, AI and machine learning, and data and analytics. Underlying all of it are themes of efficiency, tech adoption and driving long-term business value. 

Knowing these key areas of opportunity helps us create the most timely and relevant sessions at our upcoming CIO gatherings. With this data, we are able to bring together technology practitioners, thought leaders and strategic partners for a day of networking and sharing focused on the most pressing topics of the day. 

There are eight regional gatherings for technology leaders coming up in the next few months. Here’s a quick preview of what you can expect at each.

  1. Putting Out Fires — Technology as a Business Enabler - Southern California CIO Executive Summit

In this session, we hear from Southern California Edison Company’s Senior Vice President & CIO Todd Inlander as he discusses his experience with developing and implementing new technology to provide functional improvements to wildfire prevention efforts. 

Inlander will address the lifecycle of new technology development and implementation, from assessing areas of opportunity to overcoming challenges in a high-stress environment.

  1. Culture Eats Strategy for Breakfast - Chicago CIO Executive Summit

Gartner research shows that when employees feel connected to their organization’s culture, both performance and retention increase by nearly 40%.

In this non-traditional and interactive session led by Aaron Thomann, SVP & CIO of GE Healthcare, you will have the opportunity to share and discuss your understanding of your current organizational culture and what you want it to look like in the future. 

  1. Driving Change – Balancing Transformation and Integration - Dallas CIO Executive Summit

This keynote presentation by Sameer Purao, SVP and CIO at Celanese, will discuss large scale transformation projects, how to create value across the organization, and application integration. 

Sameer Purao has over 28 years of global leadership experience in manufacturing, construction, engineering, distribution and the oil and gas industries. He is a two-time recipient of CIO of the Year Award in 2019 and 2024. Join this session to learn more about his experience with large scale transformation projects.

  1. GenAI Use Case — Efficiencies to Deliver ROI - New York CIO Executive Summit

Niraj Patel, CIO at Greystone, is a trailblazer in utilizing AI to discover fresh possibilities, optimize business processes, and enhance decision making. 

In this session, Patel will discuss his experience with capturing and communicating use case ROI, measuring quality and overcoming challenges, and building an ecosystem for future innovation.

  1. Meaningful Mentorship— Shaping and Learning from Future Leaders - Atlanta CIO Executive Summit

In this unique approach to the traditional breakout session, Jay Ferro, EVP, CIO and Technology & Product Officer at Clario, leads a panel discussion with Shaun Hunt, CIO at McKenney's, and Jason James, CIO at Aptos, to discuss the mutual benefits that mentoring has on both the mentee and the mentor.

This panel will cover multiple parts of the mentoring process from championing rising stars in IT to advancing the business through leadership and development.

  1. AI Strategy — From Hype to Hyperdrive - Toronto CIO Executive Summit

AI is becoming a crucial tool to advance business strategies, but in many cases, fear is the main caveat in AI adoption. In this keynote presentation, you will hear from Sarah Willock, VP of Technology for Coca-Cola, as she shares Coca-Cola’s journey through early adoption of AI. 

Willock will touch on adapting AI and generating an effective strategy, as well as dealing with failures and successes along the way.

  1. Long Live the CIO! - Minneapolis CIO Executive Summit

Ann Marie Janke, CIO of Neiman Marcus, and Carissa Rollins, CIO of Illumina, use this interactive peer chat to explore the evolution of the CIO role, and what the future of the CIO role looks like. 

These two tech leaders will lead a discussion on what business outcomes you are trying to drive, how you are strategically approaching those drivers and ways to elevate the CIO role.

  1. Innovating an Approach to Cybersecurity with Authentic Leadership - San Francisco CIO Executive Summit

In this keynote presentation, co-presenters Lisa Davis and Eddie Borrero, the EVP & CIO and VP & CISO of Blue Shield of California, discuss their authentic leadership style and how they combine their data-driven approach with their cybersecurity strategy.  

Join this session to explore the relationship between the CIO and CISO, to learn how genuine leadership holds the power to motivate team members and manage risks, and to make the connection between change and a cloud-first strategy with security.

Evanta Executive Summits offer a remarkable opportunity for executives to hear directly from thought leaders within their community, and to connect with peers that have similar mission critical priorities. Apply to join an Evanta CIO Community here, or if you are already a member, sign in to MyEvanta to register for upcoming gatherings for CIOs.

Katie O’Reilly headshot

Katie O’Reilly

Sr Director, Content at Evanta, a Gartner Company