Industry Advisory Board
The Computer Engineering Industry Advisory Board (IAB) provides support and guidance from the community of professional engineers and leaders.
The IAB contributes valuable insight on the mission and goals of the Computer Engineering Department. It builds a strong foundation of support and communication between industry and the department. Lastly, the IAB helps the Computer Engineering program achieve ABET and other accreditations.
Kevin Beaver, CISSP is an information security consultant, writer, and professional speaker with Principle Logic, LLC, an Atlanta based company. With 30 years in IT and 24 years in security, Kevin specializes in independent security assessments and virtual CISO consulting work.
He has written 12 books on security including Hacking For Dummies and The Practical Guide to HIPAA Privacy and Security Compliance. Kevin has written over 1,000 articles on security and regularly contributes to TechTarget's SearchSecurity.com, Ziff Davis' Toolbox.com, and IBM's SecurityIntelligence.com.
He has a B.S. in Computer Engineering Technology from Southern College of Technology and a M.S. in Management of Technology from Georgia Tech. In his free time, Kevin races cars in the SCCA Spec Miata class and enjoys riding dirt bikes and snow skiing.
Robert H Block
As the senior executive leader of high-performance teams for global Fortune 500 companies, Rob Block has an established track record of continuous improvement and delivering results. He has over 20 years of technical leadership and experience converting organizational intent into action to drive revenue growth. Rob is a visionary change agent with wide-ranging expertise in technical and operational management, research and development, strategic planning, and product development and launch for world renowned, multi-billion-dollar corporations. He is a recognized leader in the field of innovation strategy and new product development.
Throughout his career, Rob has effectively led the development, launch, and manufacturing of innovative chemical, industrial, and consumer products with a focus on value creation. He started his career in R&D and has led the full product development and launch organizations, processes, and manufacturing in several Fortune 500 companies during his career. His career progression includes VP of Engineering & Operations for California Innovations, Sr. Vice President & General Manager at Kids II in Atlanta, Global VP of Research, Design & Technology at Newell Rubbermaid, and Chief Technology Officer for Key Safety Systems. Rob is also President and Chief Operating Officer for Shilo Partners, a private management consulting firm.
Rob has developed a stellar reputation in the industry for integrity, thought leadership and successful execution. He has a bachelor's degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Michigan and a master's degree in Organizational Management. He currently resides in the metro-Atlanta region with his wife and three children.
David Burns, CISSP
David Burns is the Sr. Director of Data Center Engineering, Security, and Operations for Cox Communications, Inc. His focus is on driving strategy, architectures, and execution for data center and IT connectivity, infrastructure, security, automation, and cloud services being delivered to Cox Communications, Inc. customers and partners.
Prior to joining Cox, Dave led various engineering & architecture teams at QTS Data Centers and Cisco Systems, Inc. - both in the US and internationally. His focus was on service providers and enterprise IT. Dave holds various sales, industry, and technical certifications, including CISSP, CCNP Security (formerly CCSP), CCDP, ITIL, and multiple associate-level certifications. He is also a published author with Cisco Press (a Pearson Company) and actively a technical reviewer for multiple published titles in circulation today.
Dave actively participates as a member of the Board of Directors for the Hemophilia of Georgia (a nonprofit focused on bleeding disorders). He earned his Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Phoenix and a Bachelor of Science in Telecommunications Engineering Technology from Kennesaw State University.
Adam Caplan is an automation expert with more than 15 years of experience. He has spent most of his career designing, validating, and commissioning automated packaging equipment. In 2018, Adam joined SoftWear Automation and is currently supply chain manager. He oversees a team of supply chain, manufacturing, and assembly personnel.
In his previous role, as Mechanical Engineer at Graphic Packaging International, Adam received the Presidential Award for growth in the China market. He also started a co-op program and was responsible for hiring and mentoring co-op students.
Adam holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Georgia Tech and an MBA From Georgia State University. He is an expert CAD user and PDM administrator.
Dev Connely is Vice President of Operations for BTA (Business Technology Architects). Dev manages a talented team of enterprise architects who pride themselves in their ability to listen to customer needs and apply data center solutions addressing those needs.
He has been in the IT industry for almost 25 years, focusing on consulting for many of those years. Dev’s roles were mostly customer facing in the enterprise and service provider verticals. His ability to communicate technical information to non-technical recipients (senior executives) is his forte. Prior to joining BTA, Dev spent over 20 years with Cisco Systems, Inc. During this time, he had many roles from individual contributor to service delivery director.
Dev is active in his community, having coached many youth sports teams. He lives in Cumming, GA with his wife, Ellen and their two sons, Zac and Dylan.
Nakia believes the application of digital solutions can transform any company or person – anywhere in the world. The universal need for technology is what drives her as a Senior IT Business Analyst at Chick-Fil-A Corporate, where she is based in Atlanta, GA. She powers the promise of Chick-Fil-A’s brand through technologies that ensure continuous supply of top-quality resources used in all 2,300 restaurants across the country. As an integral member of the Supply Chain Strategy and Design team, her work extends from enabling day-to-day operations through quality management systems to innovation via real-time data & analytics to ensure food safety.
As a global thinker, Nakia has worked in several countries, including France and Hungary. She is a graduate of the Digital Technology Leadership Program at General Electric, where she completed four roles in manufacturing IT, security and risk, and data analytics & visualization. Nakia has also furthered her education with courses at Indiana University's Kelley School of Business. Prior to starting her career at GE, she graduated from Kennesaw State University in 2015 as a top 5 Graduate of the Coles College of Business' school of Information Systems.
Nakia finds her greatest fulfillment by giving back. She serves regularly with New Life Church to provide resources for underserved citizens of Decatur, GA. She has also participated in other initiatives such as raising $75,000 with buildOn for construction of a new school in Malawi, Africa and mentoring high school students via Usher's New Look program.
Ife Davis is the Information Security Manager (Local Information Security Officer (LISO)) for Porsche Cars North America. Leading the Information Security team and its subsidiaries, she oversees the implementation of local security policies and third party risk management and governance within one of the largest regions for Porsche. Prior to her role as LISO, Ife was Director of Digital Security at Assurant, where she led the digital security risk, compliance, and governance program during the companies digital transformation. She has experience expands across retail, hospitality, fintech, insurance, and automotive.
Ife is a proud Alumni of Kennesaw State University having received her Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering Technology, as well as an Executive Master of Business Administration degree. She is passionate about her work as a mentor to young women in the technology field and volunteers at the Winn Dixie Hope Lodge, teaching yoga to cancer patients and their caretakers. Her hobbies include yoga, scuba diving, racquetball, reading, and spending time with family and friends.
Ken DiPrima is Assistant Vice President of AT&T’s IoT Solutions. Ken leads a team that is responsible for developing solutions to support devices in the connected car, wearables, mHealth, smart cities, and tracking/monitoring devices in many different industries such as transportation, manufacturing, energy and healthcare, which are part of the Industrial Internet.
With over 28 years of experience with AT&T and its predecessor companies, Ken has expertise in strategic planning, new product development, mobility service architecture (voice, Intelligent Networks, messaging, data, cloud), billing, security, engineering, long distance, and end-to-end testing.
Prior to this role, Ken was Executive Director of Product Realization, where he had responsibility for both product development and service architecture design for most of AT&T’s mobility services.
Ken earned a Bachelor in Science in Electrical Engineering from University of Florida. He is active in the community, working with Boy Scouts and local study groups. Ken lives in Atlanta, GA with his wife Sue and his three kids, Ryan, Kyle, and Kayla.
Harris Fogel is an innovator in the software industry. Throughout his career, he has been on the forefront of technology from the early days of Sales Force Automation and Mobility and now with Cloud Computing and the Internet of Things as one of the leads in SAP’s Cloud Platform Center of Excellence.
Harris has built and run software companies on a global scale including successful exits and is experienced in building sales and marketing strategies and go to market programs. He is a graduate from the University of Georgia with a BBA in Finance. Harris currently serves on the Board of the Procter & Gamble Alumni Association and is a former Board member of the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce, and former Chairman of the Grocery Manufacturers Association’s Associate Member Council.
Theodore Grosch served as an electronic technician in the U.S. Navy before college. After earning his B.S. in electrical engineering, from Pennsylvania State University, he worked at Hughes Aircraft, Space, and Communications Group in El Segundo, CA and at General Electric’s Aerospace Division, in King of Prussia.
Theodore returned to Penn State for graduate school and his research pioneered automotive radar from ‘87 to ‘93. After earning a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering, he worked at M.I.T. Lincoln Laboratory - on radar applications for ground penetration and ballistic missile defense.
Theodore then joined a start-up, in 2001, where he designed CDMA base stations and worked on cellular performance and optimization. In 2012, he joined the faculty at the University of Massachusetts, Lowell -where he taught undergraduate and graduate classes in circuit design, electronics, radar systems, and antenna design. In 2014, he moved to Kennesaw State University where he taught RF design, embedded systems, and digital electronics.
His research is in the area of radar signal processing and embedded control systems. He currently is a senior research engineer at GTRI. He is a licensed Professional Engineer in the state of Georgia and a member of IEEE since 1980.
Steven M. Hunkele
Steven M. Hunkele is an experienced sales professional with a proven track record of achieving consistently high customer satisfaction by providing proven solutions allowing customers to gain a competitive advantage.
Steven is currently at ABB. His primary goal is to develop custom focused solution for OEMs, system integrators, and industrial end-users by understanding the customer’s challenges. Stevens focus is on helping customers become more efficient, profitable, and safe. Prior to this role, Steve was a drive product manager, where he had responsibility for product development, product marketing, and sales strategy.
Steven has a Bachelor Science in Electrical Engineering from Kettering University in Flint, MI. Hew was born in Pontiac, MI and moved to the Atlanta area in 2003. He currently resided in Jefferson, GA. Steven has three kids, Lyndsay, Jackson, and Jefferson. His interests include traveling, camping, hiking, mountain biking, and learning.
Ron is a Software Architect and Technology leader at Newell Brands with over 30 years of industry experience. He has a BS and MS in Engineering from the University of Illinois and has worked for companies such as Boeing, Lockheed, SunTrust and Newell Brands. His expertise is in software architecture and he has designed and built systems for Smart Phones, PCs, Main Frames and embedded systems. Ron is married, has two children and lives in Acworth Georgia.
Arjun Joginipelly, Ph.D.
Arjun Joginipelly, is an electrical engineer with extensive experience and management skills who works for Freedom Electronics located in Kennesaw. Freedom Electronics is a rebuilder of petroleum equipment, POS terminals and printers specializing in the remanufacture of Gilbarco, Dresser-Wayne and VeriFone parts. As the vice president of engineering he is responsible for the new product development and oversees quality control process to ensure highest standard in remanufactured parts. Arjun has a PhD in Electrical Engineering from University of New Orleans. His areas of interest include IOT, Embedded System Design, FPGAs and Image Processing.
As an Automation Professional for over 37 years with the Allen-Bradley/Rockwell Automation Co.- my passion and expertise is in applying automation to help improve business processes.
Born: Cleveland, Ohio 1961 – Moved to the Atlanta area in 1982
Currently reside in Suwanee, GA
Married: (2) College Age Daughters
Education: A.E.E.T 1981 – Cleveland, Ohio., B.S.E.E.T 1982- Marietta, GA.
Southern College of Technology; Received ISA’s- Outstanding “Controls” Student Award
JC Penney Co., Automotive Mechanic
Allen-Bradley/Rockwell Automation Co., Engineer in Training, Field Service Representative, Applications Engineer, Automotive Team Lead, Inside Sales Representative, Sales Support Manager, Technical Consultant, OEM/SI Account Advisor
2011: Recognized as Top Technical Sales Support Representative in North America
Home Projects, Cars, Technology, Visiting Daughter’s at College, Walking, Sharing my Automation knowledge with students!
Andrew H Kazemian
Andrew H Kazemian is an Aviation Engineer (Electrical) for the City of Atlanta’s Department of Aviation - responsible for planning, development, and design for all electrical systems at Hartsfield Jackson Atlanta International Airport. He has also been teaching at Chattahoochee Technical College, since February 2015, in the industrial electrical maintenance program as well as teaching at Kennesaw State University, since August 2017, in the department of electrical engineering.
In his spare time, Andrew runs a boutique electronics start-up company, Kazemian Engineering Solutions LLC. The company is still in the early stages of development, but he has already been granted a patent on a product he and his partners designed while he was in school and hopes to have more moving forward in the future.
Andrew has a Master of Science in applied electrical engineering from Kennesaw State University and a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering from Kennesaw State University.
Mariano Maluf is a global innovation and technology strategy leader with experience in complex organizations and segment leaders like Coca-Cola, The Home Depot, and Bellsouth. Most recently he was Director of Disruptive Innovation & Platforms at NCR, where he built and led a global, cross-disciplinary team to deliver multi-horizon innovation via emerging tech and new business models. His career also spans roles in a HealthTech startup incubation (CTO/VP), a Verizon subsidiary (IT Lead), and a Novell/HP Partner (Consultant, Product Manager).
A passionate community advocate and evangelist, Mariano served as founding member and first Board President for the global, independent VMware Users Group. He was also active in several social impact organizations and contributed to cloud adoption industry guidelines while serving in multiple customer and technology advisory councils.
As a life-long learner and systems thinker, Mariano aims to blend his diverse technology background with a broad repertoire of strategies and techniques, such as Design Thinking, Lean StartUp, Six Sigma, and Biologically-inspired Design. He currently volunteers his time at VentureLab and ATDC and is a Fellow in the Center for Deliberate Innovation at the Georgia Institute of Technology.
Alay Mehta is an accomplished executive and successful leader within numerous Fortune 500 companies. His most recent role as Vice President of Business Development was at Raycom Digital Ventures/Raycom Media - a leading TV, digital, marketing, production and events management company.
Prior to that he was Vice President of Digital Business Operations & Consumer Platforms at Gannett Digital. Alay has also been involved with numerous start-ups such as Narralist - a smart audio venture, ShortTail Media - a video advertising and cofounder of VR Spherical Source - a content and technology company for 360 Spherical Video and Virtual reality. He has also worked at Newell Rubbermaid, ShortTail Media, Turner Broadcasting, (CNN, Cartoon Network etc.), and Motorola.
Alay holds six patents and is an alumnus of the Center for Creative Leadership program called ‘Leadership at the Peak.’ He has an MBA from Emory University and Masters in Engineering from Cornell University.
Tom Singh, CRPC
After interning with Merrill Lynch, while attending the University of Florida as an undergrad, Tom Singh began his career with them in 2001. He is the lead partner in the Rogan, Singh, Agnone & Associates Wealth Management, comprised of 12 individuals, which manages close to $1B of client assets encompassing entrepreneurs, successful corporate executives, and company retirement plans.
Tom was named Resident Director in 2008 of the Duluth, GA office, in addition to his practice duties. He later became Senior Resident Director of the Alpharetta office in 2017. Alpharetta is the largest advisor run office in the Merrill Lynch system and generates $100M of revenue, overseeing $15B in assets.
Tom was appointed to the “Optimal Practice Model” (OPM) National Faculty in 2011, teaching other FA’s best practices in running their business. He currently serves on the South East Division Leadership Advisory Council for Merrill Lynch and recently named by Forbes Magazine as “Best in State” Wealth Advisor for 2019.
In his spare time, Tom travels with his wife, coaches his son’s youth sports, follows his daughter’s competitive gymnastics career, and currently serves as chairman of a non-for-profit pharmacy that produces over $100M in revenues – with all proceeds go to serve those with inherited bleeding disorders. He is also spends time with his Angel Investment endeavors.
Mike Slawson is Vice President of Washroom Services and Connected Devices at Georgia-Pacific, responsible for the development of the company’s IoT-connected dispenser business. Mike was previously a co-founder and the Chief Executive Officer of Lumense, a Georgia Tech spinoff commercializing real-time chemical and biological sensor technology. At Lumense, Mike oversaw all aspects of the company’s development, including business strategy and fundraising. Prior to Lumense, Mike was the founding CEO of Qualtré, Inc., another Georgia Tech spinoff commercializing MEMS inertial sensors.
From 1998 until 2011 Mike was a general partner at Alliance Technology Ventures, a $250 million Atlanta-based venture capital firm focused on developing early-stage companies in information technology and life sciences. For several years, Mike was responsible for the information technology investment strategy, and he assisted in the development of several of the firm’s successful early-stage investments. Prior to joining ATV, Mike was a Kauffman Fellow at Chicago-based ARCH Venture Partners.
Mike has a bachelor’s degree (magna cum laude) in Electrical Engineering and Mathematics from Vanderbilt University, a Master’s Degree in Electrical Engineering from North Carolina State University, and a Master’s degree in Business Administration from the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill. Mike also held engineering and engineering management positions with Hewlett-Packard, Siemens, and Alcatel, and holds four US patents.
Sonya Stallings-Ward is an experienced Sales Professional with a proven track record of achieving consistently high customer satisfaction by tackling complex business solutions and overcoming competitive threats.
She has worked for Fortune 500 companies for almost two decades such as SAP, Intel, Hewlett-Packard, Dell, Microsoft, and Teradata. During that time she has sold over $300M in IT technology products and services to AT&T, Time Warner Cable, Cox, Georgia Pacific, Coke Cola Enterprises, Convergys, Cisco, and others.
Sonya has worked with CXOs and key stakeholders to solve business issues by developing custom focused on solutions such as Digital Transformations, e-Business, ERP, CRM, TELECOM, Data Center and Storage Solutions, Operating Environments & Messaging, Network Integration, IT Service Management, Converged and Unified Communications, Mobility, Security Solutions, Business Intelligence, and Social Networking.
A native of Columbus Ohio, she is a big Ohio State University fan. She received a BS in Computer Science from Central State University in Wilberforce, Ohio and earned an MBA from Portland State University in Portland, Oregon. She is married to Derrick Ward and has two stepdaughters.
Active in the community, Sonya has served on the Board of Directors for the National Black MBA as VP of Operations, Friends for Life Board of Directors and a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority. Previously service includes Urban League of Portland, Oregon, Girls Scots of America, and many others.
John Wallace is Director of Innovation, Retail Solutions at Emerson Commercial & Residential Solutions. He has been active in the design and development of electronic control systems for more than 20 years and holds several patents related to control of HVAC and Refrigeration systems. Wallace graduated from the University of Kentucky with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering and the University of Missouri with a master’s degree in electrical engineering. He is a member of ASHRAE and has served on many industry committees’ including the Lonmark Refrigeration committee, Department of Energy’s Better Building Alliance and currently chairs the NAFEM (North American Food Equipment Manufacturers) Data Protocol standardization committee and the AHRI Air Conditioning & Refrigeration Electronics section.
David Ziskind, P.E.
David Ziskind is Engineering Manager at Dennis Group, the #1 Food and Beverage Design Firm in the U.S. David’s responsibilities include leading multidisciplinary teams, controls, automation, and engineering; startup, project, and client relationship management; and coaching and developing engineers. In addition, David developed and implemented a multi-school co-op program at Dennis Group. Throughout his career, David has been responsible for developing the automation systems to launch new food and beverage products. A graduate of Georgia Tech with a Bachelors in Electrical Engineering, David is a registered Professional Engineer in Georgia and Kentucky, and holds a Project Management Professional certification