Keynote Speakers

Monday General Session speakers:

Midhu Varghese
Chairwoman - Emerson Global Users Exchange

Midhu Varghese is Commissioning and Qualification Manager at AbbVie responsible for development and global deployment of AbbVie’s risk based commissioning and qualification program for equipment, facilities, utilities and automation per ASTM E2500-13. Prior to this role, she was Controls Engineering and Validation Manager at AbbVie’s R&D API Pilot Plant, responsible for managing external and internal resources to support small to large projects, new products and/or sustaining projects. In addition, she served as Project Manager and Engineer on DeltaV migrations and supported capital projects and manufacturing operations. Before joining Abbott/AbbVie, Midhu was a Systems Engineer at Fisher-Rosemount Systems, Austin, Texas.Midhu has a bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from Texas A&M University *whoop* and raises (manipulates and referees) four children in the suburbs of Chicago.

Lal Karsanbhai
Executive President of Emerson Automation Solutions

Lal Karsanbhai became executive president of Emerson Automation Solutions in October 2018. In this role, Karsanbhai is responsible for leading strategies, technologies and innovations to help customers enhance operations and achieve Top Quartile performance. Emerson Automation Solutions is a leader in helping process and discrete manufacturing companies automate and optimize production through innovation technologies and expertise. He is part of Emerson’s Office of the Chief Executive, which helps develop and guide the company’s global business strategies.

Peter Zornio
Chief Technology Officer of Emerson Automation Solutions

Peter Zornio is Chief Technology Officer (CTO) for Emerson Automation Solutions and has been with Emerson for 13 years. As CTO, Peter has responsibility for overall coordination of technology programs, product and portfolio direction, and industry standards across the Automation Solutions group. This includes Emerson’s digitization and Industrial Internet of Things (IoT) developments, such as the Plantweb™ digital ecosystem. 

Stuart Harris
Vice President Planning & Global Marketing Officer of Emerson Automation Solutions

Stuart Harris joined Emerson in 1986 and has 33 years’ experience. He is currently Vice President & Global Marketing Officer for Emerson Automation Solutions, responsible for global marketing, strategic planning, digital customer experience, and industry programs.    Stuart joined the PEG in June 2011.

Stuart has held a variety of marketing, business development, sales management, and general management positions.  He managed Emerson’s Asset Optimization business in Europe, Middle East and Africa.  Stuart relocated to the US in 1998 with the Asset Optimization business as Director of Business Development, and became the VP Marketing in 2002.  He assumed the role of VP & GM Asset Optimization in October 2010.  He was promoted to Vice President, Planning for Emerson Process Management in June 2011, and added responsibility for global marketing and digital customer experience in October 2014.

Peter Hinssen
Guest Keynote - Technology entrepreneur and author

Peter Hinssen is one of the most sought-after thought leaders on radical innovation, leadership and the impact of all things digital on society and business.

Peter is the author of four bestselling business books. He launched his fourth book “The Day After Tomorrow” in June 2017, about surviving in times of radical innovation. Peter has given numerous keynote speeches around the world, for Google Think Performance, Nimbus Ninety, Gartner, NEXT Berlin, Tedx, PayPal, MasterCard, Microsoft, CIO City, SAS, Accenture and Apple.

He lectures at renowned business schools like the London Business School, the MIT Sloan School of Management and the Paul Merage School of Business at UC Irvine. He is also a multiple board advisor on subjects related to innovation and technology. For more than fifteen years, Peter led a life of technology start-ups. Between start-ups, he has been an Entrepreneur in Residence with McKinsey & Company, with a focus on digital and technology strategy. Peter’s current company nexxworks helps organizations become fluid, innovate and thrive in The Day After Tomorrow.

Wednesday Lunch Entertainers:

Digital Deception
Tech Meets Magic

Digital Deception is collaboration between two of the country’s most exciting practitioners of magic: Doug McKenzie and Ryan Oakes. Doug has been profiled on CNN Tech, performed for royalty, and created original magic for countless televised specials. Ryan has performed at The White House, been profiled by Forbes, and appeared in almost every US state. Both Doug & Ryan bring their deep knowledge of illusion and their love of technology to the show, which they debuted in 2017. Digital Deception merges interactive magic with the technology around us to create a unique stage presentation that forces audiences to re-examine what’s possible in today’s modern world.