2019 Speakers 2018-11-14T13:10:40+00:00

2019 Speakers


Cassandra is an employee engagement specialist and motivational map practitioner, who is passionate about making a difference in the field of employee engagement and motivation. She believes if you understand what motivates individual employees, you can deliver a great ‘Employee Experience’ and in turn create high performing teams who are committed to the long-term vision and profitability of a business. Cassandra is regularly asked to talk on the subject of Employee Engagement. She is the founder of Engaging Norfolk part of the Engage for Success movement and is on a personal mission to make Norfolk known as a great place to work! With 17 years HR experience working across the private and not for profit sectors Cassandra has extensive knowledge of FMCG, Retail and the Care Sector. She also successfully owned and operated a recruitment business across East Anglia. Cassandra has recently judged at the prestigious 2018 Employee Experience Awards which celebrates excellence in Employee Experience. She has designed, implemented and led employee engagement programmes winning regional business awards for ‘Employer of the Year’. Sessions: Crack the motivation code!


Chris is a Software Engineer working on C#/.NET support for Google Cloud Platform. He is mainly focused on existing and new .NET gRPC client libraries.


Geoff works for Siemens Product Lifecycle Management Software, based in Cambridge. He has over 30 years’ experience of software development. Although he has served time as both project manager and scrum master, he is a developer at heart, working at various times on robotic systems, web front-ends and GUIs, and back-end services. From a background in assembly language, Geoff moved to C++ in the early 90s, Java in the 2000s and is currently developing web services in C#. Professionally, his core interests are software architecture, clean code, TDD, and Agile practices, while in his spare time he enjoys sailing and opera, and is passionate about motorcycles. He has presented previously at SPA2014 in London, Agile Cambridge 2014, and Siemens Tech Conclave 2017 in Pune, India.


Paul is a Software Engineer, currently at Codeweavers Ltd, who has worked in a variety of environments from entirely colocated to 100% remote working companies.

He has plenty of say on Agile processes and ways of working with an ambition to make us all a little happier at work.


Working remote vs Working colocated


Andy is a Solution Architect for Worldpay and has been working on e-commerce payment gateways since 2015.  He's been a software and solution architect for over 10 years working across both the Java Enterprise and .NET platforms and before that a trainer, developer and tester.  He developed an interest in security after, having just finished teaching a course on Java Security, a student asked “But how does SSL actually work?” and realising that couldn’t explain it from the ground up.  As he's neither a cryptographer nor a mathematician, you can rest assured that there won’t be any maths in his presentations...well, not much!



Frances is currently editor of the ACCU’s Overload magazine. She has a PhD in machine learning and has worked in various companies with a finance focus.

She has talked and written about various ways to program your way out of a paper bag, providing a gentle introduction to some machine learning approaches, while trying to keep up to date with new techniques.


Code Your way out of a paper bag


Roberto Cavalcanti is an Azure Database Senior Support Escalation Engineer with Microsoft CSS, working as a Technical Advisor for the Azure Database Global Technical Support team. He is a database specialist with over 20 years of experience. Roberto is passionate about SQL Server customer support, focusing on helping Microsoft improve its database products, and customers to make the most of their Azure Database implementations. He has been supporting Azure SQL Database since its inception, when it was still called “SQL Azure”. Roberto has written many articles about Azure SQL Database for MSDN/TechNet, SQL Magazine, and has been a speaker for Microsoft in internal and external events such as TechReady, Microsoft Insights/TechEd, SQL Saturday. He has delivered SQL trainings to many Microsoft SQL professionals in multiple countries in the Americas, and in Europe. Roberto is based at the Microsoft Support Center in Las Colinas, Texas, USA.


Andy Courtenay is currently the Infrastructure Manager for Evoke Systems Ltd. Many years ago, as he watched the network infrastructure he’d just inherited meltdown around him Andy concluded that he never wanted to do that job again. Inevitably he’s doing it again (but this time in a delightfully Solaris free environment). In between attempting to PowerShell script the world into doing his bidding Andy has also been (and occasionally still is) a software developer, experienced in both Java and C#. He also likes cats.

Matt Draycott

From failed entrepreneur to vibrant speaker. Author and motivator Chris Edwards brings the fire to make your life unforgettable!

To say Chris Edwards is an overcomer might be a bit of an understatement. His passion for living life to the fullest has lead him to tackle many obstacles to achieve his dreams. Just in the past few years he has faced a cancer scare, 3 major joint surgeries, almost losing his wife and unborn child.

What About it Now

John is the Chief Technology Officer at Axon Vibe,  co-founder and chairs SyncNorwich – Tech & Startup Community & Sync the City – Norwich’s 54 Hour Startup Event.

John has a background in location data and technology, having worked at multimap.com, bing maps and now Axon Vibe.  Axon Vibe build mobile location solutions to power the biggest disruption in transport (known as Transport-as-a-Service).


Orchestrated Mobility - Changing The Way We Move


Chris Filip, or Rares Cristian Chirita Filip, his full name, is a Romanian game designer, product and event manager and educator who is creating events Eastern Europe and the UK to grow the game development scene and create a game development framework in Central and Eastern Europe.

Chris was born in Bucharest, Romania's capital, and studied at the Tudor Vianu National College of Computer Science before studying game design at the University of Suffolk. While there, Chris took part in Dare to be Digital as a semi-finalist and participated in the Global Game Jam every year since 2012. He is part of the first generation of Romanians to graduate from the University of Suffolk.

After graduating university in 2014, Chris went on to work for Ubisoft Bucharest as a game designer on Watch_Dogs 2. Since 2016, after the launch of the game he was working on, he moved on to work as a Product Manager for Conga Ltd. in the UK, organising a team of British nationals for the creation of a gamified interurban bus travel app.

Moving between Romania and the UK, as well as with Ubisoft Montreal, Toronto and Milan through co-dev on the Watch_Dogs 2 project, gave Chris important perspective on the way Eastern Europe differs from Western Europe in ethics, demographics and videogame development culture.

Since 2016, Chris organises the Bucharest site for the Global Game Jam, which, starting in 2017 turned into Almost a Hero, an initiative for game development education in Eastern Europe. Still in 2017, Chris started organising Game Anglia, the biggest game development conference in the East of England. He also works as a production consultant for No Moon Ltd. and worked as a Producer and Game Designer for the mobile game Twin Diamonds, working with a multinational team of British, Romanian and Canadian residents.

A man of many endeavours, Chris now works full time for Game Anglia and Almost a Hero, furthering these projects and their aims for international cooperation and diversity within the game development sectors. Since 2018, Chris is a member of the BAFTA Crew Games.


Lowering the Iron Curtain: Western and Eastern Europe Gamedev Culture


Adam is a Senior Software Developer with ContractorCalculator and formerly EposNow. Now in his 6th year of professional software development, Adam has had the chance to work with and study under some of the best and most bleeding edge tech enthusiasts. A proponent of unit testing and lifelong learning, Adam is deeply enthusiastic about increasing developer confidence in the products they are creating. Adam has worked in tested, untested, TDD, BDD, SOLID and free for all environments and has learned the importance of knowing when to test, and when not to!




Goran started with software development 17 years ago as Visual C++ developer. Soon after, he discovered Linux and never looked back. His career encompasses different industries, technologies, programming languages. He has made software for Linux, Windows, Sun Solaris, Blackberries (7 and 10), Android, coded in Java, C, C++, php, python and many other languages. He's even created a programming language in one of his previous roles.

For the last 8 years Goran has been working for payments companies. His current employer is Worldpay, a payments industry giant. He works there as a Principal Design Engineer, with expertise in Application Security.




Ian is an Energy Coach and founder of Yellow Brick Road and Energise.me. Energise.me is a digital constant energy coaching solution that helps you optimise your energy and minimise your stress.

Ian is also a Tedx speaker. His Tedx talk focussed on How to Dream Big and describes his strategy to qualify for the Ironman World Championships, in Kona, Hawaii. Ian has previously represented Team GB at Long Distance Triathlon. He’s a Dad, husband and a dreamer!


Don’t fall over like Elon Musk did – How to stay energised and disrupt an industry


After spending 13 years developing applications for Czech Air Traffic Control, Jim bailed out in 2016 and landed in the world of DNS. He now spends his workdays coding while sitting between two DNS RFC authors and by the time the conference takes place may be one himself.

What About it Now

consultant · father · he/him · husband · itinerant · programmer · speaker · trainer · writer Kevlin is our opening keynote speaker on Friday morning.


I’m a self employed software consultant specialising in practice, process, TDD, and complex-adaptive systems-thinking. I’ve worked with Accenture, Aviva, Cisco, Ericsson, Friends Provident, HP, Microsoft, Ordnance Survey, RBS, Reuters, Renault F1, Schlumberger, Tandberg and many many more. I’m 33 years old (hex) and I’ve loved software since I was 10 (decimal). I live in Somerset in England. I’m married to the beautiful Natalie and dad to Ellie, Penny and Patrick. I love coarse fishing and salmon fishing. I’m the ex ACCU conference chairman. I’ve had some C# books published. I’m the co-author with Olve Maudal of the Deep C/C++ slide deck nearly 1,000,000 views). On twitter I’m @JonJagger. I built cyber-dojo.org to promote deliberate practice for software development.


Damnjan is a software developer with ca. 10 years of experience. Before and in parallel he was a teacher for more than 6 years, has a solid experience in transfer knowledge and pointing out important things to students. Recently he lead small conferences and workshops in his company and across the PHP community. He discovered that there was a big lack of knowledge of object-oriented design and practices in the IT community. He also discovered that schools produce half-baked students not ready for the agile world they will face. By struggling so many times because of that, he decided to spread a word and try to influence anyone who is open to change.



Jose Manuel

José Manuel Jurado currently works as SQL Support Escalation Engineer and Subject Matter Expert in Azure SQL Database at Microsoft Spain. With over 15+ years of experience in SQL Server environments (administration and database development), he is a speaker for internal events at Microsoft and for public events as SQL Saturday, SQLBits, SQL Nexus, TechReady, DotNetConference and Azure BootCamp. In the past, he worked as Project Manager for large Global Retail Company for more than 10 years developing projects using different Microsoft Technologies


We're waiting for more info on Liz. Check back soon!


Huw works as a consultant, contractor  and independent researcher in studies of psychological development. In the sphere of commercial software, he has developed C++ software systems in finance, defence, engineering, market research, education and psychometrics. A present significant project is the study of the formation of children's handwriting skills and capabilities through the use of bespoke software, designed according to extensive theoretical work. Some of his papers are available on academia.




Head of IT Development and Architecture at Vacation Rentals UK Ltd, the parent company of Hoseasons, Cottages.com and James Villa. Karen has held a variety of positions in IT spanning delivery, service and testing roles across a number of industries.




Tom is a Microsoft Teams & Skype for Business developer and Microsoft MVP with over 10 years experience in the software development industry. He is the Product Innovation Architect at Modality Systems (modalitysystems.com), a top-tier Microsoft Gold Partner for Communication that deliver software solutions to FTSE 100 companies, multi-national corporations, government organizations and charities. He is based in the UK but travels worldwide to help customers achieve more from their communication platform. He is also passionate about creating great software that people will find useful. He blogs at thoughtstuff.co.uk about Teams, Skype for Business, AI and Bots with plenty of code samples and freely available products. He is an international speaker and storyteller and a contributing author on the Skype for Business Unleashed book (published 2016).

Sessions:  Build a Bot in 90 mins

Freelance Design Consultant
We’re waiting for confirmation on Heydon’s keynote. Check back soon for more!


Friday's Keynote
Rupert ran away from the theatre to become a web developer at the turn of the century. Since then he’s been making mistakes at Neontribe as fast as he can, and has now got a good number under his belt. Recently he’s been using Javascript to help teenagers talk to doctors, Americans to buy airline tickets and everybody to find their way to the loo.


Saturday Tech: Attack of the Monorepos

Tom has a wide range of experience with a variety of businesses, with the first ten years of his career spent in various Engineering  Project Management roles, followed by more than twenty years of experience in Sales and Commercial positions, serving large multinational corporate clients to small family businesses around the world.

His experience in these customer facing roles has given him a fascinating insight in to the operations of many seemingly very different and diverse industries from paint manufacturers in Manchester to shrimp farmers in the Mekong Delta. However the one thing that all customers have in common is a ‘want or need’ and an expectation that a ‘good’ supplier will at least meet if not exceed their expectations.


An Engineer's Guide to Life (an antidote to self-help books!)

Ewan Slater is an architect in Oracle’s EMEA Technology Cloud Team, with over twenty years experience in the technology industry. He is currently focused on helping Oracle’s customers and partners adopt a cloud – first approach to development. Outside of work he is an active member of the Norwich Ruby User Group (NRUG) and Digital East Anglia. He contributes to a number of open source projects and is one of the organisers of DevEast.

Adam has been developing software for more than 25 years and still seems to be looking for the answers on Google.




Karissa, also known as LadyK, is an Emotional Management Coach. She helps businesses cultivate a stronger emotional climate. She is the CEO of LadyK Solutions. LadyK has spent over 10 years in corporate America where she recognizes the need for organizational emotional management competence. In the past five years she’s invested on focusing on education initiatives. Her Executive MBA is from The University of Texas at Arlington. She’s working on her doctorate in International Education. She is the host of The LadyK Show and in her free time she is a recreational road cyclist.




An agile coach with Aviva UKI for 5 years; training, coaching and mentoring at various levels of the organisation. Coaching new and old teams in IT, Customer and more recently Data Science.


The Schizophrenic Organisation


Jennifer Wadella has been writing code since before she realized it was a credible career path. She currently works as a lead front-end developer at legal tech startup and loves building javascript applications and speaking at technical conferences. Jennifer is an active member of the KC tech community and the founder of Kansas City Women in Technology(KCWiT), an organization aimed at growing the number of women in technology careers in Kansas City. She's created a number of programs for KCWiT to help women and girls learn to code including CoderDojoKC, Coding & Cupcakes and Coding & Cocktails.  She is a Silicon Prairie Champion Award Nominee, Rising Trendsetter STEMMy award-winner, and is apparently Missouri's Coolest Woman according to Pure Wow. She doesn't blog much, but can handle 140 characters.

Jennifer WadellaTwitter

Jeannette Washington, M.Ed. is a former Speech Language Pathologist with nearly a decade of experience working with students that exhibit special abilities. Her expertise in the field of dyslexia has been solicited in The Washington Post alongside the cofounder of the Yale Center for Dyslexia & Creativity. Jeannette has since ignited her passion for special populations in the tech industry. She has spoken at the Mississippi Dyslexia Symposium, Word Camp Publishers Chicago and participated in a Diversity in WordPress Panel, to name a few. She boasts the importance of accessibility, inclusivity, neurodiversity and equity in the tech industry.




Ex-theoretical high energy physicist, ex-UNIX systems programmer, ex-computer science academic, ex-startup CTO, ex-startup CEO, ex-independent consultant, ex-analyst, ex-author, ex-expert witness, ex-trainer, but not yet an ex-human being. Still interested in programming and programming languages, concurrency and parallelism, and build.




I am a test evangelist, teacher and international speaker, presenting workshops and talks on technical testing techniques. I’ve worked on award winning projects across a wide variety of technology sectors ranging from broadcast, digital, financial and public sector working with various Web, mobile and desktop technologies.

I’m an expert in technical testing and test automation and a passionate advocate of risk-based automation and automation in testing practices which I regularly blog about at mwtestconsultancy.co.uk and the co-founder of the Software Testing Clinic. in London, a regular workshop for new and junior testers to receive free mentoring and lessons in software testing. I also have a keen interest in various technologies, developing new apps and Internet of thing devices regularly. You can get in touch with me on twitter: @2bittester