• Solution Executive, Watson Customer Engagement, IBM

    maher_lahmarMaher has more than 15 years’ experience developing data-driven products and generating insights to support merchandising, marketing, pricing and supply chain decisions in Retail and Wholesale industries. He is now a Sr. Offering Manager in the Watson Customer Engagement organization at IBM where he drives the strategy, development, sales and marketing of analytical solutions.

    Most recently, he held a Director of Science Solutions position at Walmart Global Customer Insights and Analytics (GCIA) leading the development of a suite of Assortment Planning solutions and the Test and Learn teams for Walmart US and Sam’s Club. Prior to this role, he worked at Target where he lead data science teams and collaborated with vendors on developing and implementing advanced analytical solutions for merchandising and pricing stakeholders. He also held a Data Scientist position at PROS, a Texas-based Pricing and Revenue Optimization software company where he consulted and developed predictive analytical solutions for Fortune 500 clients.

    Maher holds a Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering from the University of Minnesota and an MS from Bilkent University. He served as faculty at the University of Houston and University of Minnesota and has been a member of INFORMS since 1998.

  • Sudharshana Apte
    Research Scientist
    Modeling & Simulation, Altria Client Services

    Sudharshana leverages prescriptive analytical tools to model real-world dynamic systems that drive business decisions. Her core expertise lies in developing solutions for scheduling problems found in the consumer packaged goods industry. She is motivated by the applicability of the research problems she pursues and has a key role at Altria in providing actionable insights that result in improved process efficiencies and cost savings. She holds a PhD in Systems Modeling and Analysis from Virginia Commonwealth University and a BE in Computer Science and Engineering from Anna University in Chennai, India. Her commitment to promote underrepresented groups has her serving on the board of the Forum for Women in Operations Research. In the time between modeling and writing about herself in third person, Sudharshana loves to travel, read, and sip on chai.

    Zahir Balaporia
    Optimization Solutions Partner

    Joining the FICO team in 2015, Zahir helps clients design solutions for their advanced analytics needs, with a focus on optimization, analytics deployment and change management. He brings 20 years of experience in manufacturing, transportation, logistics and IT, having recently led the advanced analytics team within a $4B company. His work was profiled in the book Only Humans Need Apply – Winners and Losers in the Age of Smart Machines by Tom Davenport and Julia Kirby. Zahir has a BS in Computer Engineering, an MS in Industrial Engineering, and an MS in System Dynamics.

    Eric Bickel
    Associate Professor and Director of the Graduate Program in Operations Research and Industrial Engineering
    University of Texas – Austin

    Eric Bickel is Associate Professor and Director of the Graduate Program in Operations Research and Industrial Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin. In addition, his graduate advisor for the Engineering Management program and Academic Director of the McCombs School of Business Strategic Decision and Risk Management program. Prior to returning to academia, Professor Bickel was a Senior Engagement Manager for Strategic Decisions Group, where he remains on the board of directors. He has consulted around the world in a range of industries, including oil and gas, electricity generation/transmission/delivery, energy trading and marketing, commodity and specialty chemicals, life sciences, financial services, and metals and mining. Professor Bickel is the President of the Decision Analysis Society. He holds an MS and PhD from the Department of Engineering-Economic Systems at Stanford University.

    Tudor Bodea
    Director, Revenue Optimization
    InterContinental Hotels Group

    Tudor Bodea is a Director of Revenue Optimization Innovation in the Distribution and Revenue Management Strategy Department at the InterContinental Hotels Group in Atlanta, GA. In his role, Tudor is responsible for the identification and exploitation of revenue/profit opportunities using research techniques from such study areas as operations research, economics and psychology. Tudor has published scientific papers in such journals as Manufacturing & Service Operations Management, Transportation Research and Transportation. He is the co-author of the books Segmentation, Revenue Management and Pricing Analytics and Pricing Segmentation and Analytics. Tudor earned his Ph.D. in Civil Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology with an emphasis on choice modeling, transportation systems, logistics and statistics. He holds an M.S. in Civil Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology and an M.S. and B.S. in Transportation Systems from the Technical University of Cluj-Napoca, Romania.

    Douglas Bowman
    Professor, Marketing and Area Coordinator Marketing
    Emory University

    Douglas Bowman is Professor of Marketing, McGreevy Term Chair in Marketing, Senior Associate Dean for Working Professionals Programs, and Co-Director of the Emory Marketing Analytics Center at Emory University’s Goizueta Business School where he teaches courses in Product & Brand Management and in Syndicated Data Analysis. An accomplished researcher in the quantitative aspects of marketing, Bowman is a past winner of Emory’s highest teaching honor, the Emory Williams Award (2013), and the Marc F. Adler Prize for Excellence in Teaching (2004), which honors teaching quality, course innovation and relevance to real-world problem solving in all Goizueta Business School programs over a 3-year period. He  serves in a number of leadership roles related to his field of expertise outside the School including editorial board memberships on leading scholarly journals in marketing, past-president of the American Marketing Association’s Market Insights Council, and co-chair of the 2014 INFORMS Marketing Science Conference.

    Aaron Burciaga
    Advanced Analytics Senior Manager

    Aaron Burciaga CAP is an Advanced Analytics Senior Manager for Commercial Management Consulting at Accenture LLP – he leads Accenture’s Advanced Analytics Applications Platform in North America and is also the Global Defense Analytics Lead.  Aaron is also Reserve Marine Officer supporting the CIO Headquarters Marine Corps-Pentagon. Technical interests are at the crossroads of advanced analytics, global logistics, and information management (“big data”). M.S. in Operations Research from the Naval Postgraduate School and a B.S. from the United States Naval Academy.

    Manoj Chari
    Senior Director, Advanced Analytics R&D

    Manoj Chari is Senior R&D Director for Operations Research in the Advanced Analytics Research & Development Division at SAS Institute in Cary, NC. His department is responsible for the development and support of the SAS/OR software product and it also provides specialized consulting services  focused on OR modeling.  His team also provides customized optimization and network analysis components for SAS  machine learning, statistics and econometrics products  as well as SAS industry solutions. Prior to joining SAS, he spent over a decade in academic research and teaching. Manoj has a Ph.D. in Operations Research from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

    Kean Chew
    Director, Strategic Services
    Phi Holdings

    Kean Chew has over 20 years of global leadership and consulting experience in building research and cross-functional teams, processes, and practice.  He specializes in advanced analytics, marketing and supply chain management, and organizational effectiveness.  Kean currently serves as the director of strategic services at Phi Holdings, where he helps his internal and external clients address their business and organizational challenges using data driven insights and recommendations.  Kean is most energized when meeting and networking with new people; it is very likely that he will connect with you at the conference.  Kean received his Ph.D. in Social Psychology from the University of Oregon.

    Dayana Cope
    Manager, Operations Research
    Walt Disney World

    Dayana Cope leads the Advanced Analytics group at Walt Disney World. Her team focuses on providing analytical insight to solve operational challenges at the Disney Theme Parks and Resorts. Throughout her career, Dayana has spearheaded the inception and advancement of analytics efforts within global corporations in various industries. She obtained a Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering from the University of Central Florida with a focus in the area of Supply Chain Management and Simulation Modeling and Analysis. She currently serves as the INFORMS Roundtable representative for Disney.

    Pooja Dewan
    Chief Data Scientist
    Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway (BNSF)

    Pooja Dewan is the Chief Data Scientist at BNSF Railway (BNSF) where she has led the Operations Research (OR) and Advanced Analytics group for the past 13 years.  In her 17 years with BNSF, Pooja has worked as an internal consultant for several groups, managed the OR group and lead two regional teams for Locomotive Distribution and Planning.  Pooja Dewan has been a member of INFORMS (Operations Research Society) since 1993 and RAS (INFORMS Railway Application Section) since 1999. Over the years, she has lead several initiatives that have touched upon many activities conducted by RAS and INFORMS, and has been instrumental in sponsoring activities that help bridge the gap between practice and academia. Among the several leadership initiatives, the major ones include: RAS officer, organized RAS Workshop, RAS Newsletter Editor (2004 – 2013), RAS Student Paper Chair (2004-2008), Semi-finalist in Edelman (2009), Edelman Organizing Committee (2011-current), Edelman Judging Committee (2012-2016), INFORMS Analytics Conference Organizing committee(2013-current) Analytics Award Judge (2011-2013) Analytics Award Committee Chair (2013-2014) and Edelman Gala Chair (2016-2017).  She received her M.S. and Ph.D. from Pennsylvania State University and is an author of several research publications that appeared in various scientific journals.

    Sam Eldersveld

    Barry Ezell
    Senior Principal Analyst
    Old Dominion University and Innovative Decisions, Inc.

    Barry Charles Ezell is Chief Scientist and research associate professor at Old Dominion University’s Virginia Modeling Analysis and Simulation Center and part-time consultant to Innovative Decisions, Inc.  Barry has 26 years of experience in decision and risk analysis in the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) and U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), with senior risk analysis expertise in terrorism risk, critical infrastructure vulnerability, and cyber risk to industrial control systems.  His recent projects include providing risk and decision analytic support to the DHS National Biosurveillance Integration Center, Sandia National Labs, Defense Securty Service, DHS Network Security Division, National Institute of Standards and Technology, and decision support to inform Commonwealth of Virginia DHS Grant allocation.

    Elea Feit
    Assistant Professor of Marketing
    LeBow College of Business
    , Drexel University

    Elea McDonnell Feit is an Assistant Professor of Marketing at Drexel University and a Senior Fellow of Marketing at The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. Much of her career has focused on developing new quantitative methods and bringing them into practice, first working in product design at General Motors, then commercializing new methods at the marketing analytics firm, The Modellers, and most recently as the Executive Director of the Wharton Customer Analytics Initiative, where she built the academic-industry partnership program. She enjoys making analytics and statistics accessible to a broad audience and has recently co-authored a book on R for Marketing Research and Analytics with Chris Chapman.  She holds a PhD in Marketing from the University of Michigan, an MS in Industrial Engineering from Lehigh University and a BA in Mathematics from University of Pennsylvania.

    Matt Fitch
    Decision Analysis Consultant
    Chevron Corporation

    Matt Fitch is a Decision Analysis Consultant with Chevron Corporation, where he has practiced for 8 years. Formerly an engineer at Boeing, he now focuses his practice on helping teams achieve high Decision Quality in the Health, Environment, Safety, and Social aspects relevant to R&D and Major Capital Projects through the application of Value-Focused Thinking and Multi-Objective DA. He is a member of the Decision Analysis Society and Society of Decision Professionals. His academic background includes engineering, operations research, and philosophy.

    Arnie Greenland
    Business Analytics Faculty Member
    Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland

    Dr. Arnie Greenland is currently a faculty member at the Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland where he teaches courses in Business Analytics. He retired in 2014 from the IBM Corporation, where he was an IBM Distinguished Engineer and Technical Executive within the Global Business Services, Public Sector Practice. His career spanned more than 40 years in which he delivered advanced business analytics services for both public- and private-sector clients. His last position at IBM was as manager of Advanced Analytics and Optimization practice for the Public Sector. In the last years at IBM, his client work focused on applying data and text mining methods to fight fraud and other improper payments in the Federal space. In his more than 35 year consulting career, Arnie worked in a wide variety of analytical areas including operations research, statistics, data and text mining, algorithm development, survey research, and econometric modeling. He worked in a very broad collection of application areas including revenue and social services administration, healthcare, postal operations, transportation, defense, intelligence and homeland security. Arnie continues to be very active in member and volunteer within INFORMS.  Arnie was among the first 20 individuals to receive the Certified Analytics Professional (CAP) certification from INFORMS, and he continues to work on the CAP committees. He also holds a Ph.D. in Mathematics.

    Mani Janakiram
    Director Supply Chain Intelligence & Analytics
    Intel Corporation

    Mani Janakiram is a Principal Engineer and a Director of Supply Chain Intelligence & Analytics at Intel Corporation. He has been with Intel for 15 years and has managed several strategic projects in factory operations, capacity planning, process control, analytics, strategy, supplier management, factory science and supply chain. In addition to his Hi-tech experience, his 25 years of experience includes Automotive and Aerospace industries. Prior to Intel, he worked at Honeywell and Motorola in operations, strategy, systems, analytics, manufacturing, research, planning, etc. Mani has two patents and has published 50+ papers on supply chain, statistical modeling, capacity modeling, data mining, factory operations research and process control. Mani is an adjunct professor at Arizona State University, school of Business and also a visiting lecturer at MIT’s Center for Transportation & Logistics. Mani holds a PhD and M.S. in Industrial & Systems Engineering from Arizona State University, MBA from Thunderbird School of Global Management and a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering. He is a recognized Six Sigma Master Black Belt and also an APICS certified supply chain professional (CSCP).

    Diego Klabjam
    Northwestern University

    Juergen Klenk
    Principal Scientist
    Exponent, Inc.

    Dr. Juergen Klenk is a Principal Scientist in Exponent’s Health Sciences Center for Epidemiology and Computational Biology. A mathematician by training, Dr. Klenk has extensive experience in applying advanced analytics techniques to health outcomes research, health care quality, pharmacovigilance, compliance, disease surveillance, clinical trials modeling and simulation, and business process optimization. He has over 25 years of professional experience supporting the pharmaceutical, biotech, and health care provider industry, as well as government organizations such as the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). His work is focused on Big Data strategies, developing innovative analytic techniques, mathematical and statistical models, and simulations for data-driven analysis and decision support.

    Bill Klimack
    Manager, Decision Analysis Functional Manager

    William “Bill” Klimack is Chevron’s decision analysis functional manager.  A retired U.S. Army Colonel, he was the Director of the Operations Research program and served as Head, Department of Systems Engineering, U.S. Military Academy.  Subsequent consulting helped clients select portfolios of oil and gas opportunities and project development planning.  Pharmaceutical consulting included optimizing R&D portfolios and analysis of disease prevalence.

    He has a chemical engineering BS from Lehigh, a MS in applied mathematics from Johns Hopkins, a MMAS from the US Army Command and Staff College, and a PhD in OR from the US Air Force Institute of Technology.  He is a Certified System Engineering Professional, a Professional Engineer, and a Fellow of the Society of Decision Professionals, and the Royal Geographic Society.  He is a recipient of the Decision Analysis Society Practice Award, a past President of the Society of Decision Professionals, and a former INFORMS VP of Meetings.

    James Lemieux

    Freeman Marvin
    Vice President & Executive Principal Analyst
    Innovative Decisions, Inc.

    Freeman Marvin has over 25 years of experience as a decision analyst, group facilitator, and process consultant in the Federal government sector.  His expertise is in the integration and application of organizational development, operations research, and electronic collaboration technologies.  He has facilitated numerous decision conferences and electronic meetings, developed decision models using a variety of software, and taught courses on group decision support for traditional facilitators, managers, and analysts.  Freeman is a Certified Professional Facilitator (CPF) with The International Association of Facilitators. He is a co-developer of the Soft Skills Workshop: Real-world Skills for Decision Analysts and OR/MS Professionals held at the INFORMS Analytics Conference for the past five years.  This workshop teaches knowledge and skills in using the “soft skills” needed to work with people to employ the techniques of operations research and management science. Freeman has worked as an operations research analyst for Rockwell International and Decision Science Consortium, and was a senior member of the technical staff for Northrop-Grumman TASC, a systems engineering and professional services company. He holds a Master in Public Policy degree from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and a Bachelor of Science degree from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.

    Robert Migliara
    Operations Research Analyst
    The Kroger Company

    Polly Mitchell Guthrie
    Senior Manager, Advanced Analytics Customer Liaison Group

    Polly Mitchell-Guthrie is the Senior Manager of the Advanced Analytics Customer Liaison Group in SAS. Research and Development Division, where her team serves as a bridge between R&D and external customers and internal SAS divisions. Previously she was Director of the SAS Global Academic Program, leading SAS. outreach to colleges and universities worldwide to incorporate SAS into their teaching.

    Polly began her career at SAS in Strategic Investments and later served in Alliances, after working in the nonprofit sector in philanthropy and social services. She is an active member of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS), including serving as Chair of the Analytics Certification Board and Secretary of the Analytics Section.

    In addition, Polly is the Chair of the Self-Help Ventures Fund, part of the largest community development financial institution in the country (with over $1 billion in assets), that provides financing, technical support, consumer financial services and advocacy for those left out of the economic mainstream. She has an MBA from the Kenan-Flagler Business School of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she also received her BA in political science as a Morehead Scholar.

    Tarun Mohan Lal
    Principal for Clinic Operations Redesign and Analytics
    Mayo Clinic

    Tarun Mohan Lal is the Principal for Clinic Operations Redesign and Analytics at Mayo Clinic.  In this role, Tarun manages a team responsible for using operations research and advanced analytics methodologies to solve a broad range of strategic, tactical and operational business problems within the outpatient clinic practices of Mayo Clinic. Tarun has experience working on several OR/MS/analytics projects across industries. He is an active member of INFORMS and has supported/led several initiatives including two consecutive terms as the Treasurer for Analytics section, Chair for analytics clusters at annual and analytics conference, SAS Student Analytics competition Judge, founding member of the Health Application Society Practitioner committee, industry- academic task force, CAP examination writing committee and CAP Masters in Analytics Program committee to name a few. Tarun has a B.S. in Industrial Engineering from the Manipal University, India, and an M.S. in Industrial engineering from Texas A&M University. He will be graduating with a doctorate in Operations Research in Healthcare from State University of New York.

    Andrew Musselman

    Scott Nestler
    Associate Teaching Professor, Department of IT, Analytics, and Operations
    Mendoza College of Business, University of Notre Dame

    Scott Nestler, PhD, CAP is an Associate Teaching Professor in the Department of IT, Analytics and Operations, within the Mendoza College of Business, at the University of Notre Dame. Previously, he served as an operations research analyst in the U.S. Army, to include teaching at the Naval Postgraduate School and the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. Nestler has a Ph.D. in management science from the University of Maryland – College Park. He is the currently the Vice-Chair for Programs of the INFORMS SpORts (Operations Research in Sports) Section and has served as the Chair and Vice-Chair of the Analytics Certification Board.

    Pelin Pekgün, Ph.D.
    Assistant Professor
    Moore School Of Business
    , University Of South Carolina

    Dr. Pelin Pekgün is an assistant professor of management science in the Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina. Her research interests include applications of management science and operations research in pricing and revenue management, supply chain management, and marketing/operations interface. Prior to joining academia, she served as the Manager of Analytical Services in JDA Software’s Pricing and Revenue Management Group leading the operations research team in North America in various projects in retail, hospitality, passenger travel and other leisure industries. Her work with the Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group and JDA on stay night price optimization became a finalist for the 2012 INFORMS Franz Edelman Award and 2013 INFORMS Revenue Management and Pricing Section Practice Award. Dr. Pekgün holds M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in industrial and systems engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology, and B.S. and M.S. degrees in industrial engineering from Bogazici University in Istanbul, Turkey.

    Varun Ramanujam
    Quantitative Analyst, Google

    Michael Rappa
    Director of the Institute for Advanced Analytics
    North Carolina State University

    Dr. Michael Rappa is the founding director of the Institute for Advanced Analytics and a professor in the Department of Computer Science at North Carolina State University. As head of the Institute, he leads the nation’s first and preeminent Master of Science in Analytics (MSA) as its principal architect. The MSA is an intensive one-year professional degree that blends computer science, statistics, applied mathematics and business disciplines into an innovative education focused on the analysis of very large amounts of data. Prior to joining NC State as Distinguished University Professor in 1998, for nine years he was a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Rappa graduated with honors from Union College and soon thereafter began his teaching career at the University of Minnesota, where he earned a doctorate in 1987.

    Jenifer Schilling

    Jennifer Schilling is the Statistician at Communicus, an advertising research firm based in Tucson, Arizona. She develops analytical and predictive models to provide insights into marketing campaigns and brand performance. Prior to working at Communicus, Jennifer was an Operations Research Engineer at Intel where she developed optimization and simulation models to enable supply chain success. She holds a Masters of Science in Computational Operations Research and a Bachelors of Science in Applied Mathematics with a minor in Computer Science, both from the College of William and Mary.

    Les Servi
    Group Leader, Decision Analytics
    The MITRE Corporation

    Les Servi is a Group Leader for a Decision Analysis group at The MITRE Corporation. At MITRE he contributed to a diversity of areas including the analysis of social media and portfolio analysis. In addition he is a technical advisor to some government programs to help select, monitor, and/or make recommendations to redirect recipients of government funding. He is currently working on starting a new Social Media Analysis subdivision of INFORMS and is currently the Boston INFORMS chair. He is a former member of two Defense Science Board task forces, a former member of the Board of Directors of INFORMS for 6 years, a former chair of the Applied Probability subdivision and the Telecommunication subdivision and is a Fellow of INFORMS. He has been an editor of Operations Research, Management Science, and INFORMS Journal on Computing. He previously worked at Bell Laboratories and GTE (now Verizon) Laboratories pursuing telecommunication research, served as a visiting scientist at Harvard University and MIT, and worked at MIT Lincoln Lab in the areas of military communication and ISR. He has an extensive publication record with five papers having more than 20 citations and was awarded 10 patents as a result of his operations research analysis. He earned an Sc.B and Sc.M. in Applied Mathematics from Brown University and an M.S. and Ph. D. from Harvard University.

    Tom Siems
    Assistant Vice President & Senior Economist
    Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas

    Siems is assistant vice president and senior economist in the Communications and Outreach Department at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. In this capacity, he partners with economists at the Fed to gather information on emerging trends and policy issues of interest to financial institution executives, educators, and thought leaders in Texas, northern Louisiana and southern New Mexico. He also oversees economic outreach efforts that provide additional opportunities to listen and learn from the regions’ constituents.

    Siems teaches operations research and management science courses in the Bobby B. Lyle School of Engineering at Southern Methodist University and is the Lyle School’s chief engineering economist. Siems earned a BSE in industrial and operations engineering from the University of Michigan and an MS and PhD in operations research from SMU. He is also a graduate of the University of Michigan’s Public Finance Institute, the University of Colorado’s Graduate School of Banking , SMU’s Graduate Marketing Certificate program, University of Virginia’s Darden Executive Education program and Harvard University’s Leadership Development program.

    Siems has published more than 60 articles in various academic journals, books and Federal Reserve publications and is the National Association for Business Economics’ only two-time winner of the Edmund A. Mennis Contributed Paper Award. His work has received extensive attention from leading publications, including Financial Times, Wall Street Journal, The Economist, American Banker and Investor’s Business Daily. In 2015, he delivered his first TEDx Talk at SMU on “The Wealth of Innovations.” Siems has also authored five children’s picture books, including his newest release in 2009, The Dangerous Pet, which poetically challenges the way the next generation thinks about debt.

    Margi Siems
    Manager, Strategic Project Planning
    American Airlines, Technical Operations

    Margi holds a BSE in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Michigan and a MBA from SMU, originally joining American Airlines in 1989. After significant contributions in Operations Engineering and Fleet Planning, Margi took a break from American Airlines, spending a good amount of that time at Tektronix Communications where she optimized processes, programs, and products in Business Operations and Product/Portfolio Management. Margi returned to American Airlines as a Manager in Tech Ops Supply Chain Performance and recently moved over to managing a team of Senior Project Managers in Tech Ops.

    David Steier
    Managing Director, Advanced Analytics and Modeling
    Deloitte Consulting LLP

    David Steier is a Director in Deloitte Analytics for Deloitte Consulting LLP’s U.S. Human Capital Practice and is Deloitte’s Technology Black Belt for Unstructured Analytics. Using advanced analytic and visualization techniques, including predictive modeling, social network analysis, and text mining, David and his team of quantitative specialists help clients across a variety of industries to solve some of their most complex technical problems.

    Prior to joining Deloitte, David was Director of Research at the Center for Advanced Research at PwC, and was a Managing Director at Scient, an e-business services consultancy. David has also authored numerous publications and presentations in applications of advanced technology, including two books, and many journal papers, conference papers and workshop presentations. David received his PhD in Computer Science from Carnegie Mellon University. He is an adjunct faculty member at Carnegie Mellon as well as University of California Berkeley, teaching a course on Managing Analytics Projects.

    Alan Taber
    System Engineer Senior Staff
    Lockheed Martin

    Alan Taber is from Fort Worth where he is a member of the System Design and Requirements group at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. He has over 15 years of experience variety of increasingly responsible roles, including time in software project management, combat system engineering, and renewable energy. He has a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Stanford, a master’s in System Engineering from Stevens Institute of Technology, and an MBA from Rutgers-Camden in International Business. He participated in the 2008 INFORMS Professional Colloquium, is co-chair of the CAP Study Guide Committee and study guide editor, and has served as co-chair of the Analytics Conference Poster Session since 2012 and as the INFORMS Professional Colloquium (IPC) chair since 2015.

    Aurelie Thiele
    Associate Professor
    Southern Methodist University

    Dr. Thiele is an Associate Professor in Engineering Management, Information and Systems at SMU after spending 12 years at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, PA, first as an Assistant Professor and then an Associate Professor with tenure. From 2012 onwards she was the co-director of the Master of Science in Analytical Finance at Lehigh. In 2014-15 she was a Visiting Associate Professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management, on sabbatical from Lehigh. She holds a MS and a PhD in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from MIT, as well as a “diplome d’ingenieur” from the Ecole des Mines de Paris in France. Her research on decision-making under high uncertainty has been funded by multiple National Science Foundation grants, an IBM Faculty Award, a P.C. Rossin Assistant Professorship, a Lehigh Faculty Innovation Grant and a SMU Maguire Ethics Center Faculty Research Grant, among others. She has also received the first prize in the George E. Nicholson paper competition. Current responsibilities at INFORMS include co-chairing the New Faculty Colloquium and being part of the George E. Nicholson paper competition jury and the Professional Recognition Committee.

    Noha Tohamy
    Vice President & Distinguised Analyst
    Gartner, Inc.

    Ms. Tohamy is a Vice President & Distinguished Analyst at Gartner, Inc. She helps organizations build strong supply chain analytics competency to support the digital transformation. This spans identifying the strategy and roadmap, organizational structure, and talent requirements. She advices organizations on how to adopt leading-edge analytics technologies to optimize supply chain performance.  Ms. Tohamy has written extensively about best in class supply chains, successful adoption of advanced technologies and the evolution of digital supply chains. For over 20 years, she has helped organizations improve their supply chain performance through process redesign, talent development and technology adoption. She has been a frequent speaker at global Gartner events, MIT Sloan School of Management, Georgia Tech’s Supply Chain and Logistics Institute, APICS and Informs. Ms. Tohamy received her B.S., with high honors, in Mathematics from Emory University and her Masters in Operations Research from Georgia Institute of Technology.

    Dan Vanden Brink
    Vice President of Advanced Analytics and Engineering

    Dan Vanden Brink is the vice president of advanced analytics and engineering at Schneider, a premier provider of transportation, intermodal and logistics services. In this role, Vanden Brink applies big data analytics and optimization to some of the most challenging problems in logistics.

    Vanden Brink joined Schneider in 2014 with more than 25 years of experience in implementing high-impact analytics solutions across several industry verticals including consumer packaged goods, transportation, electronics and industrial. In 2005, Vanden Brink joined LogicTools as vice president of consulting. After a series of acquisitions, Vanden Brink found himself employed by IBM and leading IBM’s worldwide optimization and supply chain team. He was a key member of the team driving the analytics and Smarter Planet initiatives at IBM.

    Vanden Brink holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering from Iowa State University and a master’s in operations from the Illinois Institute of Technology. Vanden Brink has served as an adjunct professor at IIT.

  • Miguel Anjos
    Polytechnique Montreal

    Professor and Canada Research Chair
    Department of Mathematics & Industrial Engineering

    Miguel F. Anjos is a Professor and Canada Research Chair in the Department of Mathematics and Industrial Engineering of Polytechnique Montreal. He received his degrees from McGill University, Stanford University, and University of Waterloo. He is Editor-in-Chief of Optimization and Engineering, and serves on the editorial boards of several other journals. He is a former Vice-Chair of the INFORMS Optimization Society, and has been involved in the organization of this conference nearly every year since 2007. He was the Founding Director of Polytechnique’s Trottier Energy Institute, and served as Expert Advisor to Canada’s Trottier Energy Futures Project. He received the Méritas Teaching Award from Polytechnique in 2012. He was awarded a Humboldt Research Fellowship for Experienced Researchers, and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal for significant contributions to mathematical optimization and its industrial applications. He is a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering.

    Sudip Bhattacharjee
    University of Connecticut

    Associate Professor, School of Business

    Sudip Bhattacharjee is an Associate Professor in the School of Business, University of Connecticut. He currently serves as the Chief, Center for Big Data Research and Applications, US Census Bureau. He is Visiting Faculty at EM Lyon School of Business, France, and Indian School of Business. He was a Visiting Professor at GE Global Research Center, USA. He has previously served as the Assistant Dept. Head of Operations and Information Management, and as the Executive Director of MBA Programs, both in the School of Business, University of Connecticut. His research interests include information systems economics, energy informatics, digital goods and markets, data analytics in IT and operations, and closed loop supply chains. His research has appeared in premier journals such as Management Science, INFORMS Journal on Computing, Journal of Business, Journal of Law and Economics, ACM Transactions, Journal of Management Information Systems, IEEE Transactions, and other leading peer-reviewed publications. He serves or has served as Associate Editor for Information Systems Research (for 5 years), guest AE for MIS Quarterly and Decision Sciences Journal, and in prestigious committees such as INFORMS Edelman Award, INFORMS Selects, and various conferences and workshops. He co-chaired CIST 2014 (Conference on Information Systems and Technology), Review Coordinator, WITS 2015 (Workshop on Information Technology and Systems). He has extensive research consulting experience with Fortune 100 firms on “Big Data” driven decision making in IT and operations. He also teaches a semester-long live data analytics graduate course in partnership with private and govt. organizations. His research has been highlighted in various media outlets such as Business Week, Washington Post, San Francisco Chronicle, Der Spiegel, Christian Science Monitor,, Business 2.0 Web Guide, and others.

    Cindy de Groot

    Managing Director, Logistics and Supply Chain

    Cindy de Groot leads the North American Consulting business for ORTEC. At ORTEC Consulting (a business division of ORTEC) we believe that Advanced Analytics & Optimization is key for companies to innovate and outperform. Her team of highly skilled operations research consultants, engineers and data scientists use their in-depth experience in advanced analytics to support many industries to solve strategic, tactical and operational challenges.  Cindy holds a B.Sc. and M.Sc. in Business, Mathematics & Computer Science, is a Certified Analytics Professional (CAP) and a Certified Supply Chain Professional (APICS SCOR). Combining her business, mathematics and IT knowledge she has delivered many successful projects delivering tailor made optimization models and technology, as well as consulting projects for all levels of analytic maturity in various industries. Her domain experience ranges from Supply Chains, Resource Planning and Forecasting to Pricing, e-Commerce and Big Data.

    Fatma Gzara
    University of Waterloo, Canada

    Associate Professor, Department of Management Sciences, Faculty of Engineering, University of Waterloo

    Fatma Gzara is Associate Professor and co-founder of WANOPT, the Waterloo Analytics and Optimization Lab. She holds a Professional Engineering designation in Ontario, Canada. Her primary research interests are in large scale optimization and its applications. Her current research activities focus on data analytics, supply chain management, optimization under uncertainty, and network design for hazardous material transportation, distribution and airline operations. Recently, she is leading several industry collaborations on data analytics funded by federal and provincial grants. Some of her industry collaborators include Bombardier Inc., Navtech Inc., and Dematic Ltd, MedAvail Technologies Inc.. She published work on large scale optimization, optimization under uncertainty, network design and analysis, supply chain management, hazmat transportation, and airline operations planning. Her work appeared in the Journal of Global Optimization, Omega: The International Journal of Management Science, Networks, Computers and Industrial Engineering, and IIE Transactions, among others.

    Professor Gzara received a Ph.D. in Management from the Desautels Faculty of Management, McGill University, and M.S. and B.S. degrees in Industrial Engineering from Bilkent University (Ankara, Turkey) in 1995 and 1997, respectively. She was assistant professor at York University from 2006 to 2009. Prior to that, she held a postdoctoral position at the University of Alberta, School of Business.

    Robert Hammond

    Robert Hammond is a Decision Analyst in the Chevron North America Exploration and Production Company. In this role he consults for project teams and asset managers to ensure high decision quality in capital investment and strategic decisions. He also helps to develop and deliver internal decision analysis and operations research training within Chevron. Robert received a BS in Electrical Engineering and MS and PhD in Operations Research & Industrial Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin. He is a member of the INFORMS Decision Analysis Society and the Society of Decision Professionals.


    Mary Helander
    IBM Research

    Dr. Mary Helander is a master inventor and senior research scientist in Mathematical Sciences & Analytics at the IBM T. J. Watson Research Center. She received a B.A. (CIS/math) from SUNY Potsdam, an M.S./IEOR from Syracuse University, and a Ph.D./IEOR from the University of Buffalo. Dr. Helander was a Research Fellow and faculty member at Linköping University, in Sweden.  During 30+ years in research and applications, Dr. Helander has applied modeling, problem solving, algorithm and solution development to study HIV transmission dynamics; network design, hazardous material routing; geographically distributed team coordination; greenhouse gas emission minimization; tracking food ingredients; testing raw materials for contaminants; and other applications in transportation, manufacturing, and data science for social good. She has published in the Journal of Food Protection, Interfaces, Networks, Transportation Science, Computers and Operations Research, IBM Journal of Research and Development and IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering.

    Diego Klabjan
    Northwestern University

    Professor, IE & MS
    Director, Master of Science in Analytics Program

    Diego Klabjan is a professor of industrial engineering and management sciences at Northwestern University and director of the Master of Science in Analytics Program.  His research is centered around analytics with the focus on the smart grid, transportation, supply chain management and retail. After obtaining his doctorate from the School of Industrial and Systems Engineering of the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1999, Klabjan first joined the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign before moving to Northwestern University. He is the recipient of the first prize of the 2000 Transportation Science Dissertation Award and he received various other awards with graduate students. He is a former president of the Institute of Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS) Aviation Applications Section. He is an associate editor for Naval Research Logistics, IIE Transactions, and two areas in Operations Research. Klabjan is the director of the Master of Science in Analytics.

    David Leonhardi
    The Boeing Company

    Senior Business Strategist, Strategy Consulting Commercial Airplanes

    Leonhardi has more than 35 years of aerospace experience and has served in a variety of positions within multiple Boeing organizations including Developmental Manufacturing, Airplane Production, Product Development and Marketing . In his current role, Leonhardi leads cross organizational strategy development activities associated with Future Airplane Product Lines and Production Systems, Collaborative Business Relationships, New Business Development Opportunities and Sustainability Strategies. Along with working at Boeing, David serves on the Conference Committee for the INFORMS Conference on Business Analytics and Operations Research, is a member of the INFORMS Decision Analysis Society and is a Fellow in the Society for Decision Professionals.

    Doug Mohr

    Director of Operations Research

    Doug is currently responsible for managing the development of Advanced Analytics for both surface and air transportation for UPS.  Doug has worked for UPS for 30 years and has held various assignments including job setup, process improvement, advanced analytics, and has performed both tactical and strategic network planning. Doug has been a member of INFORMS since 1988 and has been a member of Selects Committee since 2010.  Doug has a BS in Industrial Engineering & Management from North Dakota State University and an MS in Operations Research from the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland.

    Aysegul Peker

    Edward Pohl
    University of Arkansas

    Professor and Department Head, Industrial Engineering
    University of Arkansas

    Edward A. Pohl is a Professor and holder of the 21st Professorship in the Department of Industrial Engineering at the University of Arkansas. Prior to his appointment as Department Head, Ed served as the Director of the Operations Management Program, the largest graduate program at the University of Arkansas.  Ed currently serves as Director of the Center for Innovation in Healthcare Logistics (CIHL), Co-Director for the Emerging Institute for Advanced Data and Analytics at the University of Arkansas and the Director of Distance Education in the College of Engineering.  He has participated and led several reliability, risk and supply chain related research efforts at the University of Arkansas.  Before coming to Arkansas, Ed spent twenty years in the United States Air Force where he served in a variety of engineering, analysis and academic positions during his career. Previous assignments include the Deputy Director of the Operations Research Center at the United States Military Academy, Operations Analyst in the Office of the Secretary of Defense where he performed independent cost schedule, performance and risk assessments on Major DoD acquisition programs, and as a munitions logistics manager at the Air Force Operational Test Center.  Ed received his Ph.D. in Systems and Industrial Engineering from the University of Arizona. He holds a M.S. in Systems Engineering from the Air Force Institute of Technology, and M.S. in Reliability Engineering from the University of Arizona, an M.S. in Engineering Management from the University of Dayton, and a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Boston University.  His primary research interests are in reliability, engineering optimization, supply chain risk analysis, decision making, and quality.  Ed is a Fellow of IIE, and a Senior Member of IEEE and ASQ, a member of ASEM, and INCOSE.

    Nada Sanders
    D’Amore-McKim School of Business, Northeastern University

    Distinguished Professor of Supply Chain Management

    Dr. Nada Sanders is the Distinguished Professor of Supply Chain Management at the D’Amore-McKim School of Business at Northeastern University. She is an internationally recognized thought leader and expert in forecasting and supply chain management. She is author of the books Big Data Driven Supply Chain Management (Pearson, 2014), Foundations of Sustainable Business (Wiley, 2014), as well as Supply Chain Management: A Global Perspective, 2nd edition (2017), and is co-author of the book Operations Management, in its 5th edition. She is highly published in leading scholarly journals, such as California Management Review, Journal of Operations Management, Journal of Business Logistics, and numerous others.

    She is a Fellow of the Decision Sciences Institute, and has served on the Board of Directors of the International Institute of Forecasters (IIF), Decision Sciences Institute (DSI), and the Production Operations Management Society (POMS). She was co-founder and Associate Editor of Foresight: The International Journal of Applied Forecasting. Throughout her career Dr. Sanders has successfully held a range of leadership roles in both academic and professional organizations and has served on a number of executive boards. She has provided training and consulting to a range of Fortune 500 companies, and is a frequently called upon keynote speaker and expert witness.

    Paul Wicker
    Decision Strategies, Inc.

    Senior Consultant

    Paul Wicker has 30 years of business experience in the Chemicals and Downstream Oil & Gas industries. As a Senior Consultant with Decision Strategies, Inc., he brings to his clients a broad base of expertise from his varied career within Texaco and Chevron. He has business knowledge in Marketing & Sales, Operations, and Product Technology. Paul has had extensive experience in working with teams to develop successful results. He has expertise in the decision analysis process/tools as well as in stochastic modeling and expert interviewing. Mr. Wicker has a BS in Chemical Engineering from Purdue University. He spent 22 years with Texaco and ChevronTexaco in a variety of engineering, technical, management, sales, and marketing positions. He joined Decision Strategies, Inc. in 2004.

    James T.  Williams

    Principal Consultant, Xpress Optimization Team

    Jim Williams is a Principal Consultant with FICO’s Xpress Optimization team.  He has 32 years of experience as an analytics consultant and supply chain manager.  His role is to help organizations understand the potential of applying optimization methods to help solve tough business problems in short order. This can take form as diagnosing opportunities to help solve their problems, demonstrating capabilities with their data, and framing up training and/or development efforts.  Prior to FICO, Jim led the Advanced Analytics team at Land O’Lakes, solving supply chain challenges in planning, sourcing, manufacturing and distribution.

    Jim has been a member of TIMS and INFORMS since 1983, and a Roundtable representative since 2006.  He has served on the INFORMS Membership Committee, the Analytics Maturity Model Committee, the Meetings Committee, and the Analytics Conference Advisory Committee.  He served as general chair for the 2013 Analytics Conference.  He is currently serving as President-Elect of the INFORMS Analytics Section.

    Jim received a MS degree in Forestry with Operations Research concentration, from the University of Minnesota.  He also holds the Certified Analytics Professional credential.