FEATURED INDUSTRY EXPERTS
Andrew Bruce is the Founder and CEO of Data Gumbo, a Houston-based technology company that has developed GumboNetTM, the massively interconnected industrial smart contract network powered and secured by blockchain. Bruce created the company in 2016 after spotting an opportunity to eliminate a sizable cost inefficiency between an oil supermajor and one of its suppliers. Under Bruce’s leadership, Data Gumbo is now an award-winning disruptive innovator, as recognized in the Forbes 2020 Energy Awards, with industrial customers around the world. Bruce was also named a 2020 finalist for Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year Award in the Gulf Coast Area.
Prior to Data Gumbo, Andrew was the COO for MHWirth, an oil & gas drilling equipment OEM where he supervised global operations. Previous to this position, Andrew was VP of Controls at NOV. During his tenure at NOV, he founded the NOVOS product, a first-of-its-kind semi-autonomous drilling system, which Andrew holds a joint patent for on rig automation. With years of experience as an IT consultant and serial entrepreneur, Andrew earned his Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from Worcester Polytechnic
Institute. He is currently a member of IADC and SPE.
Founder and CEO
Art Powers is the Principal for Emergency Preparedness & Response and the Response Readiness Advisor in ExxonMobil’s Operational Excellence – Safety, Security, Health, and Environment Emergency Preparedness & Response organization. His current role includes monitoring trends in technology to support emergency response and training for response personnel, as well being a subject matter expert on exercise design and coordination. He has been working with ExxonMobil’s Immersive Technology team since 2018 to develop creative ways to engage response teams in challenging scenarios using various XR methods.
Prior to his current role, Art was the coordinator the America’s Regional Response Team, an all-volunteer organization of ExxonMobil employees and subject matter experts that support the Corporation’s business lines when major emergencies occur.
Art has a B.S. in Marine Transportation and an M.S. in Emergency Management from the Massachusetts Maritime Academy. He has been with ExxonMobil since 1999 and has filled a variety of operational roles in pipeline and distribution until 2014 when he became a member of the Emergency Preparedness & Response team. He is currently a member of the IAEM (International Association of Emergency Managers) and is a Certified Emergency Manager.
Emergency Preparedness and Response Advisor
Honeywell Connected Technology
Christophe Romatier is Senior Director, Product Management at Honeywell Connected Industrials. In which he oversees a number of software products for the process industries. Prior to his current role, Christophe has held a variety of roles at both UOP and Honeywell Process Solutions with the consistent goal of improving the reliability and profitability of operating companies across refining, petrochemicals, metals & mining and other process industries. He earned a joint Master’s degree in executive engineering and computer science from the Ecole des Mines de Saint Etienne in France, and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. He also holds seven patents in this space.
IBM, AI Applications
Rishi Vaish is the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and Vice President (VP) for
IBM AI Applications, a market leading portfolio of enterprise applications that
spans Asset Management, Supply Chain Intelligence, Environmental
Intelligence, Blockchain Solutions and Engineering Lifecycle Management. He is responsible for product development and delivery, driving innovation
through Machine Learning, Data Science, Site Reliability Engineering and
Hybrid Cloud architecture for the portfolio.
Through his career Rishi has over 15 years of executive leadership experience
in technology, product strategy, product development, product operations and product management from startups to large scale organizations across a variety of industries and technologies. He has deep expertise in AI-based applications, hybrid cloud technologies, cloud computing, software-as-a-
service architecture and application middleware. He is passionate about driving innovation, modernization and transforming product and technology
organizations to meet scale and growth demands.
Rishi holds a Bachelor of Technology degree from the Indian Institute of
Technology (IIT) in New Delhi, India and lives in the San Francisco Bay Area,
where he spends time outdoors hiking, biking, swimming and kiteboarding.
Chief Technology Officer & Vice President
Tec Talk Companies
Leadership Driven, Technology Focused. That is the moto of the executive, Noah Boudreaux, who leverages his two decades of experience to better align business with digital transformation trends. Serving as the General Manager of VENYU Solutions, a Datacenter services firm, he leads end-to-end operations with an emphasis on elevating the customer experience. Noah’s dedication to customers and employees provide the necessary edge needed to thrive in today’s competitive market. His unique leadership style is one of sincerity and inspiration to achieve
Noah keeps a keen eye on current trends and the ever-changing landscape of technology. He passionately educates others on the future of tech, analyzing and detailing its impact on our lives and businesses. As a contributing member of the Forbes Technology Council, Noah regularly shares his thought leadership and insights on technology trends and best practices. His nuanced views on our changing digital world give a different perspective what the future may hold. Noah’s ability to translate complex topics in creative ways builds the necessary foundation to engage executives, employees, and audiences.
Kyle has been with ExxonMobil over 12 years in various roles ranging from software development to high end visualization. Kyle found his true passion working as the Technical Lead for high-end visualization spaces called CAVEs. He quickly realized anything to do with immersion and computer generated environments called his name. Soon after the Oculus DK1 announcement he started development within Unity and tinkering with how to integrate it within the business. Shortly after getting bitten by the “immersion” bug he joined the technology research group and started doing proof of concepts on XR. Proof of concepts quickly turned into business cases and allowed him and colleagues to journey into creating a service organization called Immersive Technology Studio designed to help the business with all XR needs. He is now the solution architect of that organization and domain architect of digital realities continuing to apply his passion to the group mission of saving lives through immersive technology.
Solution Architect, Immersive Technology Studio
Atcha Dhanormchitphong "M"
Athicha joined ExxonMobil working in the Research & Engineering Information Technology section. There he held a position as a lead developer in web and a desktop applications. He then joined Architecture and Technology where he conducted proof of concepts with XR for the business units. This lead to the creation of Immersive Technology Studios, an internal IT organization that provides XR services to the business units. In his current role as the Extended Reality Domain Architect, Athicha now leads the R and D efforts within the 3D space for Digital Realities.
Extended Reality Domain Architect
Calvin Fabre is the founder and President of Envoc (pronounced: "invoke"), a 40-person radically creative software development and hosting company in Baton Rouge and Hammond. He is also co-founder of LA Wallet, the first legal digital driver's license app in the United States now with over 1.3 Million citizens registered and over three years of use case experience. Calvin's public speaking engagement includes Louisiana schools, universities, and church youth groups where he speaks on technology, digital identity, company culture, and theology. Envoc has made the Best Places to Work in Baton Rouge list for seven years in a row.
Founder and President
Leo Holzenthal, Jr.
M S Benbow & Associates
Leo Holzenthal who has been president of MSB since 2007, succeeded Mike Benbow as CEO of the company in April 2021, assuming the title of President and CEO. Mr. Holzenthal is responsible for managing the day-to-day operations at M S Benbow & Associates and ensuring client expectations are exceeded at every turn. Holzenthal has more than 30 years of experience in Power, Control Systems and Telecommunications Engineering and has managed countless projects in all phases, from design and documentation to project execution.
Having joined the company in 1984, he takes a hands-on approach to ensuring quality control and providing top-notch engineering services. Holzenthal holds a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from the University of New Orleans, as well as Master of Science degrees in both Electrical Engineering and Mechanical Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin. He is certified as a Registered Professional Engineer in more than a dozen states, including Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida.
An experienced expert witness, he recently was awarded status as a Fellow of the American College of Forensic Examiners Institute.
In addition to his executive responsibilities at M S Benbow & Associates, Holzenthal is an adjunct professor at the University of New Orleans College of Engineering and has lectured at numerous universities and conferences on control systems design and special topics in telecommunications. He received the 2015 James M. Todd Technological Accomplishment Award from the Louisiana Engineering Society.
President and CEO
Graduated in 2013 with a Bachelor’s of Science in Engineering from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette Coiled Tubing Engineer at Baker Hughes – Experience in the Gulf of Mexico, UAE, and throughout the United States – providing stress testing, fatigue analysis and detailed mechanical stress calculations.
Robotics Manager at Ecoserv – Design, Improve, Patent and Maintenance all fully automated and semi-automated technology / robotic devices.
Director of Engineering at Ecorobotics – Direct all aspect of engineering plans, activities and projects within the organization.
Director of Technology Advancement
Chris Laibe is the founder and CEO of inFRONT. Chris began his career at DuPont, where he managed businesses in North America, Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. After 12 years there, he left to create inFRONT, the maker of AllClear, the leading Emergency Readiness and Response platform for the Critical Infrastructure. Chris continues a 100-year family history of work in the refining and petrochemical industry. He is a graduate of Cornell University and he lives in New Orleans with his wife and 5 children.
Founder and CEO
Bill Leach is the Vice President of Information Technology Security and Government Services at Transformyx. Bill has been working within the fields of Information Assurance, Cybersecurity, and Compliance since 1986 starting with the United States Navy in electronic intelligence security. During his military career, he advanced to the senior enlisted ranks and earned his commission while graduating from the University of Auburn in 1996. Bill had four tours of duty as the Information Assurance Manager for the Navy Reserve Forces Command and was responsible for the certification and accreditation of over 600 reserve centers across the United States. Bill’s expertise is primarily in Information Assurance/ Cybersecurity with specializations in healthcare, financial and government sectors.
VP of Cybersecurity Government Services
A digital pioneer, Brian Lozes has conceived and developed multiple software solutions to resolve complex problems in real-life industry environments. Having cut his professional teeth improving engineering processes for titans in oil and gas–including Shell, Chevron and BP—Brian saw the opportunity for next-level technology services for the heavy industrial business sector. Based on that insight and a clear vision of the possibilities at hand, Brian founded Kinemagic. Now a global leader in XR technologies, Kinemagic developed XR technologies to improve facility design and operations.
Heath Stephens, PE is currently the Digitalization Leader at Hargrove Controls + Automation. Heath is a chemical engineer that has been working in process control, industrial networking, data collection, process safety, and process improvement for the last 25 years. He spent the first half of his career on the owner side with a specialty chemicals producer, working with batch and continuous processes at sites across the US and internationally. Since joining Hargrove 13 years ago, Heath has held a variety of positions as he has participated in the growth of Hargrove Controls + Automation to become a nationally recognized systems integrator.
John Tav, a graduate of Tulane University with a Computer Science degree, has been looking for ways to solve the technological challenges in petrochemical plants, other industrial facilities and architecture and construction (AEC) market with practical and cutting-edge solutions that fit the industries’ needs. His background in the petrochemical industry, combined with his continuous research of new technological tools, trends and solutions gives him the desire to solve all common industry problems and pitfalls, while keeping efficiency in his focus. At Engineering and Inspection Services, he leads the Technology Department, where he is expanding their reality capture, animations and immersive technologies services to help clients achieve short-term goals and provide long-term solutions.
Petter Wehlin is the Director of Technology at ARIX Technologies, an integrated robotic inspection service & data analytics company. ARIX develops, deploys, and operates robots for pipe corrosion inspection and can be applied across industries. Their robots crawl on horizontal and vertical above-ground piping while deploying a variety of sensors including Non-Destructive Testing (NDT) payloads, visual cameras, and localization sensors. Their software can both present and analyze 3D corrosion data collected from a single pipe or conduct predictive data analytics for large amounts of historical data. ARIX’s intent is to lower costs, enhance data, and improve safety for customers.
Petter is a Swedish engineer with a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Mechanical Engineering from Yale University. He has a background in both robotics research and product development and he has been working with Inspection Robotics for the last five years as an inventor, engineer, product manager, and technology leader.
Director of Technology