February 25, 2016


Some of the key topics that will be covered during this year’s conference will include: data storytelling, music marketing, beauty and retail, branding, digital strategy, content and more.

The featured speakers at this year’s Digital Summit include:

  • Patrick O'Brien
    • Patrick O'Brien – CEO

    • from Paris Presents Incorporated
    • Patrick J. O’Brien is currently Chief Executive Officer of Paris Presents Incorporated, a global beauty company headquartered in Gurnee, Illinois. In addition, he is Co-Founder and Chairman of Patina Solutions, a global senior management staffing/consulting firm.

      A growth-focused global leader, he currently has two companies in the Inc. 5000 list and was a finalist for the E and Y Entrepreneur of the Year in the Midwest Region for 2015.

      During his time at Paris Presents, the digitally-driven Real Techniques® brand has become the fastest growing makeup accessory brand in the world.  It is also the #1 makeup brush brand on You Tube, in creative collaboration with the Chapman sisters, highly regarded and digitally-savvy global make-up artists.

      Paris Presents was named the fastest growing Health and Beauty Company under $1 billion in the U.S. in the BCG/IRI Momentum report. In addition, it was named the Growth Company of the Year in the UK for 2015, a Top 10 Finalist for Total Europe and named to the Inc. 5000 list for 2015. The company has had double-digit growth over the past 4 years with a 10x increase in International Sales. Patrick has been CEO since 2012.

      Patrick is also a board member and founding investor for Bad Donkey Social, an emerging technology company in Madison, WI as well as a Member of the Dean’s Advisory Board for the UW-Madison School of Business.

      Patrick holds an Undergraduate and Graduate degree in Marketing from the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

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  • Augie Ray
    • Augie Ray – Research Director

    • from Gartner
    • For 20 years, Augie has been a digital leader, having led and managed programs involving online communities, search marketing, email, mobile apps, websites and social media. In the past decade, Augie has led a digital agency in Milwaukee, managed social media for USAA, launched an innovative Voice of Customer Action team at American Express and recently became a Research Director at Gartner, covering customer experience for marketing leaders.

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  • Mark Carlson
    • Mark Carlson – EVP, Strategic Planning

    • from Laughlin Constable
    • Mark Carlson leads the Strategic Planning team, overseeing the development and activation of brand strategy across Laughlin Constable’s client roster, including The Wisconsin Department of Tourism, Northwestern Medicine, Acuity, and Palermo’s – to name a few.

      Prior to Laughlin Constable, Mark was a Strategic Planner and Account Manager at Leo Burnett and Foote, Cone & Belding in Chicago. He has worked on a wide array of categories and brands including Kraft Foods, Boeing, Circuit City, Wal-Mart, John Deere, Pillsbury, Amoco, and Black & Decker. He is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland and the Miami Ad School in Miami, Florida. He is a former Naval Flight Officer, a certified volunteer firefighter, and is the National Board Chair for EarthShare, an environmental federation based in Washington, DC.

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  • La'Naeschia O'Rear + Matthew Eschert
    • La'Naeschia O'Rear + Matthew Eschert – Agency Business Partner + Group Manager, Agency Business Development

    • from Google
    • La’Naeschia came to Google three years ago developing and acquiring new business for Google and now works as an agency business partner specializing in digital strategy across traditional media agencies. Her team works across Google’s full suite of products and provides integrated advertising solutions to their partners. Prior to Google, La’Naeschia worked as a district manager at Aldi Inc, responsible for marketing, operations, management and performance of the of a multi-million dollar district.

      Matthew Eschert, formerly a Director in the agency world, now manages a number of teams in the burgeoning independent agency space of media & tech for Google. Now in his 6th year, Matt has worked with brands and agencies from various industries, including Healthcare, Retail, and Consumer Packaged Goods.  It’s been an amazing journey for him working with some of the best and brightest both inside and outside of Google.

      To this day, his Google mission statement guides him in his work with clients and colleagues alike: “Make Mom Proud”.

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  • Pialy Aditya
    • Pialy Aditya – VP Strategy + Business Development

    • from Shop Your Way
    • Pialy is VP, Strategy and Business Development for Shop Your Way (SYW), a member-based program that serves millions of people. She leads commerce and social engagement across both web and mobile platforms.

      Pialy also leads a small startup team within SYW focused on developing and launching new, innovative products. In March 2016, her team is launching an innovative mobile shopping app, which is projected to drive millions in incremental revenue for SYW. 

      Prior to SYW, Pialy focused on operations, strategy, branding, and investments in the fashion and tech space. She exited her own digital startup called Mintbox, worked with designer Donna Karan, served on the board for Alicia Key’s company AKW, launched the World Fashion Forum at the United Nations, and contributed to publications such as Elle and L’Officiel. She remains active in the NYC tech community and serves as an advisor to multiple startups. 

      Pialy has a BS from NYU’s Stern School of Business and a MBA from Harvard Business School.

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  • Erin Ulicki
    • Erin Ulicki – VP, Sales

    • from Okanjo
    • Erin has been helping publishers and brands leverage digital marketing revenue streams for over 15 years, focusing on helping them reach the right audience to achieve their business goals. Erin leads sales strategy and execution for Okanjo’s publishing, brand and agency partners.Upon graduation from UW-Madison School of Journalism, Erin began her career in digital publishing with and She later built extensive strategy expertise during her tenure with Centro, a Chicago-based media services leader, focusing on digital advertising execution for agencies and brands. While at her next destination, Ascedia, she led the agency’s partnership portfolio, supporting partners in leveraging digital marketing resources. Her experience in publishing, ad tech and within industry verticals provides a wealth of insight when developing solutions for Okanjo’s partners.

      In addition, Erin serves as the current president for the Milwaukee Interactive Marketing Association (MIMA) and mentors young professionals developing careers in digital marketing.

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  • Laura Markewicz
    • Laura Markewicz – VP, Digital Strategy

    • from Laughlin Constable
    • Laura is the VP of Digital Strategy at Laughlin Constable, where she leads digital and mobile strategy development across a variety of clients and industries. She considers herself a data scientist specializing in leveraging analytics and research to inspire creative ideas that move businesses forward. Her strategies range from single site and application plans to full cross-channel, digital communications strategies for businesses of all sizes and across many industries.

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  • Dan Williams
    • Dan Williams – Midwest Sales Director

    • from Spotify
    • Dan Williams joined Spotify in 2011 where he currently serves as Director of Sales for the Midwest territory. Dan has over 11 years experience in media and advertising, with previous positions at Centro, Burst Media and OMD Chicago. Dan graduated from Purdue University with a B.S. in Sales Management


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  • Joe Veverka + Melissa O'Brien
    • Joe Veverka + Melissa O'Brien – Search Insights Manager + Account Executive

    • from Microsoft
    • Joe Veverka is a Marquette University alum (Comm, ’02) with a dual-advanced degree holding (MS, 2014 and MBA, 2015). He is the Search Insights Manager for Bing Ads at Microsoft with over 13 years of marketing and advertising experience. His credentials include Bing Ads Professional Accreditation and additional certifications in paid search, display, video and individual analytics qualification. His specialties range from marketing strategy to paid search strategies, insights and analytic analysis.

      Search Insights Managers at Microsoft are the engines that power digital advertising across all aspects of the Microsoft portfolio including the high growth search engine, Bing. The Insights Manager empowers the largest advertisers around the world to reach their maximum potential through paid search engine marketing; driving unique and actionable insights that show the value of Bing Ads, influence campaign strategy for the largest advertisers in North America.

      Melissa O’Brien (nee Lynn), MU ‘05, is a senior digital leader with 10+ years of global experience across sales management, strategy, search, mobile and cross-platform sales. Currently, she is responsible for growing the Midwestern Paid Search business for Microsoft with a focus on Fortune 1,000 companies. Prior to that, she managed a sales team for Yahoo! in Melbourne, Australia, and worked across leading Time Inc. digital brands in New York City and Atlanta, including:, and

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  • Brad Heidemann
    • Brad Heidemann – CEO

    • from Tahzoo
    • As CEO, Brad drives the strategic vision for Tahzoo, a digital customer experience (CX) agency that delivers business results for Fortune 500 clients, and directs the overall planning and execution of the business. He has grown the company from a few employees and some great ideas to a new breed of CX service provider, with a strategically led, data driven approach to digital transformation that serves enterprises on a global scale.

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  • Mac Delaney
    • Mac Delaney – Head of Programmatic

    • from Merkle
    • As Head of Programmatic, Mac oversees the development of Merkle’s programmatic display and social go-to-market strategy and offering. Mac will be responsible for identifying and managing the technology, media, and data partnerships that deliver programmatic and social programs fueled by MerkleONE, Merkle’s people-based marketing solution.

      Prior to joining Merkle, Mac Delaney served as SVP of Programmatic for Starcom Mediavest Group where he was responsible for accelerating the group’s programmatic marketing capability through the development of processes, technology, and strategy across the organization. By working in partnership with agency and account leadership, as well as with the marketplace, Delaney worked to ensure the understanding and adoption of programmatic principles and best practices throughout the agencies.

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  • Christopher Schuba, Scott Humphrey, Pat Dermody + Dave Wilcox
    • Christopher Schuba, Scott Humphrey, Pat Dermody + Dave Wilcox – SVP, Tribune Publishing National Sales, Executive Search Consultant + President of Bonial Enterprises North America (Retale)

    • from Tribune Publishing, TalentFoot + Retale
    • Christopher Schuba is a veteran of the print and digital advertising sales, holding management positions with Rolling Stone magazine, SPIN magazine, The Atlantic and Tribune Publishing.  He was a key player in the launch of ESPN The Magazine, an important expansion of the ESPN franchise to print media.  Along side of media sales, his love of music and thorough understanding of the music industry drive his parallel success in the Chicago club scene. He led a partnership that opened and managed Schuba’s Tavern, a must-play live music venue for up and coming idie musicians. The partnership later developed and launched Lincoln Hall, a larger music venue along Chicago’s storied Lincoln Avenue.  Chris holds a BA from John Carroll University.

      Scott Humphrey has over 25 years experience in advertising sales and media planning. With a fundamental education in the agency landscape from Leo Burnett Media (now Starcom), Scott has represented leading media companies including CBS SportsLine ,ESPN, NBC Universal and Tremor Video.  He has experience integrating sales teams and has been involved in several industry mergers giving him the ability to understand the challenges digital marketing and media executives face today in this evolving industry. Scott holds a BA in Media Management from Miami University (Ohio).

      Pat Dermody brings more than 20 years of marketing, retail and leadership experience to her role as President of Bonial Enterprises North America, Inc. As a veteran of both agency and client side marketing, she is skilled in offline and online channels, brand strategy and retail marketing, and mass and targeted interactions. She has held top management positions at global ad agencies DDB Worldwide and Leo Burnett as well as at Sears and Kmart. Pat holds a BA from the University of Notre Dame.

      Dave Wilcox joined Marquette’s Diederich College of Communication in 2015 and currently teaches courses in advertising principles and media strategy. He spent over 25 years in the advertising industry. He began his career at Needham, Harper & Steers (now DDB Chicago), and worked on a wide range of national accounts including State Farm, Anheuser-Busch, Westin Hotels, Wheaties, Universal Pictures, Tyson Foods, Qwest Communications, and McDonalds.  He was Vice President/Media Director at DDB Los Angeles, and Senior Vice President/Group Media Director at DDB Chicago. He also held the position of Partner/Media Director at Lindsay, Stone and Briggs in Madison, WI. Dave holds a BA in journalism from Drake University, an MS in mass communication form University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and is currently ABD in mass communication at University of Wisconsin-Madison.

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