Women Who Keynote
Tech North Advocates
Dr J Harrison
(Day 1 inclusion workshop)
Clarence Odogwu is an accomplished business-focused Senior Technology Leader, with 20 years’ experience in Information / Cyber Security, Technology Delivery, Compliance and Privacy. He has significant international experience spanning Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia, Australia and the Americas.
Clarence joined HMRC in August 2018 as Chief Security Officer and also has oversight of a Cross Government Security Transformation Programme.
Prior to HMRC, Clarence was Chief Information Security Officer at Sainsbury’s Argos (previously Home Retail Group Plc) and had previously held global security leadership roles in some of the world’s leading multi-billion dollar organisations including Heinz, Charter International Plc and Bechtel amongst others.Tickets
I'm ex Government Digital Service and former Digital Projects Director with City Hall London where I established The London Data Store. I'm an experienced digital leader with a background in the public and private sector.
I am an expert in the field of open data and am the former Chair of the Open Data Governance Board Ireland advising the Irish Government on their open data initiative. I live in Manchester where I am helping to build The Federation an open community of digital businesses & innovators, built on co-operative values, in the heart of the city. I am a Non Executive Director of TransportAPI (the digital platform for Transport).Tickets
Christos is a people geek and a diversity & inclusion advocate with a career across different industries ranging from digital to social housing. He spent four years at the Co-operative Bank before joining Auto Trader in 2014 where together with his brilliant People & Culture team he focuses on creating a space for people to thrive.
Born in Athens and moved to the UK in 2002 to study at The University of Manchester; he fell in love with the city and its people so he decided to make it his home. He is actively involved in making a difference working with charities and community groups including Leonard Cheshire Disability, Manchester Pride and Forever Manchester.Tickets
With a background in social good and social innovation, Vimla is currently using her skillset as a Service Designer at FutureGov to focus on public sector transformation and what it means to solve 21st century problems with a digital mindset.
Vimla has represented the UK tech sector on international trade missions and has spoken on international stages on topics ranging from innovation, empathy and inclusion. A TedX speaker and inclusion champion, Vimla was voted a Top 50 Future Leader in 2016 and Young Digital Leader of the Year 2018.
Vimla will be running a talkshop that will explore not just how to use Service Design to work better with clients, but how to build better teams and company culture.Tickets
Germán Bencci is the founder of CodeYourFuture, a 6-months coding school for refugees with cohorts running in London, Glasgow and Manchester. CodeYourFuture was set up in 2016 with the goal of providing free training to disadvantaged individuals who dream of becoming software developers, and mentoring graduates until they gain full-time employment.
Germán previously worked in R&D for Motorola and technology innovation and partnerships for Samsung Electronics, where he led the efforts to improve the creativity and cooperation efforts with the European tech ecosystem. Germán has been co-inventor in ten utility patents. He holds a BS from Universidad Simón Bolívar in Venezuela and Masters from Karlsruhe Institute of Technology in Germany.Tickets
Amy has been working with technology teams and organisations for over a decade, with a background spanning recruitment, sales and marketing. Passionate about equality and tackling injustice, she currently heads up diversity & inclusion for ThoughtWorks, a global technology consultancy, working to make the tech industry a better place for all.Tickets
I’ve been working in government for 8 years, starting on the Fast Stream and holding roles at HMRC, DWP, Cabinet Office, Department of Health and the Home Office. In my current role as Head of Operations at the Home Office Cyber Security Centre in Manchester, I’m also completing a MSc in Cyber Technology.
Over the last few years, I’ve experienced Manchester’s burgeoning tech sector and noticeable acceleration in Cyber roles across the region in the private and public sector. With GCHQ locating here in 2019, along with their cyber arm, NCSC, the gravitational pull of cyber people and projects to the city seems certain to increase.Tickets
Danielle has worked in the technology for over 15 years and is a Head of Technology at the 150 year old Co-op. Danielle has worked across a multitude sectors ranging from Food to Funerals. Danielle has played key roles on programmes as diverse as Co-op Online Grocery Shopping in 2001, the launch and relaunch of Membership in 2006 and 2016 respectively and other digital initiatives. Danielle is a prominent figure in the North West Technology community, regularly speaking, running events and judging technology competitions locally and globally.
A well known passionate, active champion of diversity in technology, she is a Non-Exec Director of Innovate Her - “an 8 week, after school programme dedicated to giving girls ages 12-16 the self-belief and skills they need to pursue a career in technology”. She is a Board Director of the Co-op Credit Union and co-founder of @MapClubMcr.Tickets
Liz is Head of Digital & Innovation at EY North West and leads EY Absolute North – a new innovation focussed venture providing finance managed services to fast growing businesses. Liz has extensive experience working with company founders and boards (from start-ups through to listed groups) to support them in achieving their strategic aims. Alongside her day-job Liz has had a long standing involvement in D&I strategy and action at EY. Including having been involved in the origination of the UK&I D&I strategy; the establishment and ongoing leadership of the North West EY Women’s Network; and driving the inaugural EY Black Network Chairman’s Sponsorship Group.Tickets
Naomi is Co Founder of Tech North Advocates. Tech North Advocates is a private sector led coalition of expert individuals from the tech sector and broader community who will be committed to championing the North of England’s potential as a world-class hub for tech and digital businesses. She is also an experienced Partnerships & Engagement Consultant working with Tech and Digital businesses with established relationships across the UK - especially in the tech and digital sector. She has extensive experience working with startups and growth businesses particularly in the tech, digital and creative sectors.
Naomi is an Honorary Industry Fellow at the University of Salford Business School with a tech and digital focus. She was part of the Maserati 100 in 2015 – a definite list of entrepreneurs who support the entrepreneurs of tomorrow from the Centre of Entrepreneurs. Naomi has been a mentor for 8 years and mentored over 200 businesses. She is one of 2 iDEA Industry Ambassadors for the Duke of York's Inspiring Digital Enterprise Award for her work with Wakelet and iDEA and is a big champion of Digital Skills in the north of England. Naomi is a big believer that entrepreneurs are drivers of innovation, economic growth, and keen to make a positive change in their societies. Naomi is also on the board of Future Everything, Chair of the board of Capital Pilot and was recently named as one of 50 most influential women in UK technology in 2018 by Computer Weekly.Tickets
Kirsty is a passionate technologist, self-taught developer, and a vocal advocate for increasing diversity and BAME representation in tech.
She recognises technology and the community around it to be a powerful tool in promoting social mobility. Kirsty invests much of her time and energy outside of her work to ensuring that opportunities are available to those minority groups and individuals who have been historically under-represented in and underserved by technology.
She is the Co-Founder of WomenWhoKeynote.com, an international platform for event organisers to source those that identify as women for STEM-related speaking activities. She also co-organises 'Solidarity in Tech' the first group to tackle issues around BAME identity in technology in Manchester.Tickets
Co-founder at Tech Returners, James operates as a Tech Coach for individuals looking to return or enter in to a tech role following a career break. Tech Returners aims to remove the barriers that returners of all ages, genders and life circumstances face after a career break and, as a result, help to tackle the skills shortage in tech. The success of Tech Returners has enabled returners to progress into technical careers and also supports organisations in creating their own returners programmes to increase diversity and inclusion in technology.
Originally trained as a software engineer, James has been busy developing his career in all areas of software development for over 10 years. James skills include introducing team structures, processes, and development methodologies across businesses. Aiding growth, from training and developing staff, diversity to introducing agile processes. All of which has created impactful solutions for start-ups to scale ups. .Tickets
Anna is a former criminal defence lawyer, turned Software Engineer. As somebody who has successfully transitioned into a Tech career without a traditional computer science background, Anna is committed to democratising coding education and promoting a more diverse, inclusive and equitable Tech workforce. She is an instructor for CodeFirst:Girls in Manchester, a non-profit seeking to redress the gender imbalance in Tech by providing free coding courses to ambitious young women from a non-computer science background. She is also one of the organisers behind Codebar Manchester, providing monthly coding workshops for women and members of the LGBTQ+ community.Tickets
Sam is CTO at Residently, a Manchester-based startup that’s revolutionising renting. Renters spent half their income on something with no customer service, no tech, no product and no brand leader. We’re changing that.
He was previously Senior Engineering Manager at eBay after the acquisition of Shutl, and much before that was developer #1 at On The Beach Holidays. He's been coaching at codebar since 2013 and also leads the Code First: Girls Manchester General courses.Tickets
Adaobi Ifeachor is co-chair of ‘Women at the BBC’. This relatively new group is the first network to support all female employees at the company - irrespective of their division.
Adaobi has been at the BBC for around 5 years in total. Originally working as a broadcast journalist, she is now an Agile business analyst on a product team, creating games and digital experiences for children. Outside work, Adaobi is in business school, studying part-time for an MBA at the University of Manchester.Tickets
Matt is a Tech Lead for the team building the CBBC and CBeebies websites. Matt is also co-chair of the BBC’s LGBT+ employee network group, ‘BBC Pride’. He’s spent 5 years at the BBC, previously working as a Software Engineer on the BBC Sport website and the BBC’s online video and audio player.
Matt spent the early part of his career as a Specialist Network Engineer at Lancaster University. Outside of work he has somewhat of an addiction to home-automation and when he’s not shopping for the latest Alexa-enabled gadgets he can be found performing with his local amateur theatre group.Tickets
CEO and Founder at Desap System Solutions Limited, a mobile software solutions and smart device technology specialist company based in Manchester.
Currently working across multiple sectors in the marketplace, such as; Construction, Logistics, Fashion, Education, Building Design, Connected Environments, Health/Medical, Financial services, Sport, Leisure, Oil and many other commercial enterprise environments.
Roger enjoys sharing knowledge and expertise with peers and colleagues alike and passionate about mentoring and shaping the next generation of leaders in technology.Tickets
Harbinger of Change @ ThoughtWorks, Dr J has been out as Non-Binary GenderQueer for over 10 years – bringing queer theory (with a slice of humour) into the tech space, building on Thoughtworks' dedication to inclusivity and intersectionality. Dr J takes a strategic view of cultural change in Technology through a few lenses, notably queer theory.
This combines well with their years of experience using agile processes to build software and a talent for really understanding clients - looking at the problems they are solving and how to make great teams to deliver real value.
Their passion? How you can do things better with just simple changes - bringing their Service Design thinking into both the Technology and the Diversity and Inclusion spaces.