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Keynotes and Co-Chairs

Analytics Conference speakers are experts in their field. They represent a vast background of skills and experience and are from a wide range of industries. Our speakers are the best and brightest at what they do. Get ready to be inspired!

This page is updated frequently. Please check it often for the latest list of speakers.
John Elder

John Elder

Founder and President, Elder Research, Inc.

John Elder leads America's largest and most experienced data mining consultancy. Founded in 1995, Elder Research (www.datamininglab.com) has offices in Charlottesville, VA, and Washington, DC, and has solved projects in a huge variety of areas by mining data in tables, text and links. Elder co-wrote three books (on practical data mining, ensembles and text mining), two of which won "book of the year" awards in mathematics or computer science. Elder has created data mining tools, was a discoverer of ensemble methods, chairs international conferences, and is a popular keynote speaker. He earned engineering degrees from Rice University and University of Virginia and is an adjunct professor of systems engineering at UVA. He was honored to be named by President Bush to serve five years on a panel to guide technology for national security.

The Peril of Vast Search (and How Target Shuffling Can Save Science)
Itís always possible to get lucky (or unlucky). When you mine data and find something, is it real, or chance? The central question in statistics is "How likely could this result have occurred by chance?" Ancient geniuses devised formulas to answer this question for multiple, special-case scenarios. Yet, their calculus only applies to quaint, handmade analyses where only a few hypotheses are considered. But modern, predictive analytic algorithms are hypothesis-generating machines, capable of testing millions of "ideas." The best result stumbled upon in its vast search has a much greater chance of being spurious. Such overfit is particularly dangerous, as it leads one to rely on a model molded to the data noise as well as signal, which usually is worse on new data than no model at all. The good news is an antidote exists! Elder will explain the simple breakthrough solution that's rarely employed, but being rediscovered in leading fields. He will illustrate how to use the resampling method he calls "target shuffling" in multiple learning scenarios, showing how it calibrates results so they are reliable. Bottom line: Honest data science can save experimental science!
Jay Liebowitz

Jay Liebowitz

DiSanto Visiting Chair of Applied Business and Finance, Harrisburg University of Science and Technology

Dr. Jay Liebowitz is the DiSanto Visiting Chair of Applied Business and Finance at Harrisburg University of Science and Technology. His previous positions include: professorships at Johns Hopkins University's Carey Business School, the University of Maryland-Baltimore County and George Washington University; the first knowledge management officer at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center; and chair of artificial intelligence at the US Army War College.

Dr. Liebowitz is the founding editor-in-chief of Expert Systems With Applications: An International Journal and current editor-in-chief of Procedia-CS. He has published over 40 books and myriad journal articles on knowledge management, intelligent systems and IT management, and can be reached at jay.liebowitz@umuc.edu.

Analytics + Intuition = Success!
This presentation will discuss the interplay between analytics and intuition in terms of executive decision making. Vignettes, applications, trends, research issues and challenges will be discussed as related to the complementary roles that analytics and intuition play in decision making. The talent shortage in this area will also be highlighted, along with examples from educational data mining and enterprise intelligence strategy.
Michael Rappa

Michael Rappa

Executive Director of the Institute for Advanced Analytics and Distinguished University Professor in the Department of Computer Science, North Carolina State University

Michael Rappa is the Executive Director of the Institute for Advanced Analytics and Distinguished University Professor in the Department of Computer Science at North Carolina State University. As head of the Institute, he leads the nation's first and largest Master of Science in Analytics degree program, now in its eighth year. Dr. Rappa has 25 years of experience as a professor working across academic disciplines at the intersection of management and computing. An accomplished researcher and instructor, his passion is to bring an entrepreneurial and forward-thinking mindset to innovation in higher learning. His current role is to prepare a new generation of data savvy professionals for leadership in a digital world. Before joining NC State, for nine years he was a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Solving the Analytics Talent Gap
Organizations today have no shortage of data. Thanks to SAS, they also have powerful tools for quickly and thoroughly analyzing their data to derive business insights. What remains in short supply is the analytics talent needed to drive the process forward. This presentation will show how universities are stepping up to address the challenge and create a steady pipeline of highly qualified analytics professionals to meet the growing demand. Rappa will draw on eight years of experience leading the largest analytics degree program and a track record for producing many of the country's most sought-after graduates.
Armistead Sapp

Armistead Sapp

Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, SAS

Armistead Sapp leads the Research and Development division and the P-20 division at SAS.

Sapp heads the P-20 division, which houses both product development and sales for the education market in the United States. The division develops innovative products such as SAS Curriculum Pathways and SAS University Edition.

As R&D division lead, Sapp brings the talents of SAS employees together to produce the highest quality software for business intelligence, advanced analytics, customer intelligence, etc. His goals as CIO are to ensure that SAS uses modern computing platforms and delivers value to customers.

Previously, Sapp held a variety of roles at SAS, including positions within product marketing, product management and database marketing. He is the co-author of Implement, Improve and Expand Your Statewide Longitudinal Data System.

Sapp is a graduate of The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he studied philosophy and history. He also has advanced studies in immunology, physics and biochemistry.

SAS R&D Factory Tour Fall 2014
SAS Chief Technology Officer Armistead Sapp will be your guide on a tour of what's going on in SAS' R&D division. Factory Tour highlights will include what's most interesting in SAS' newest releases and what is in the works for the future. Sapp will address the future "by the numbers," including 12 technologies that are empowering 12 new innovations from SAS R&D.
This list was built using SAS software.