Spark 2.0 Speaker Profiles
Global Vice President, Distributon, Molex
Head of Supplier Management, IP&E, Newark
Heather Fulara is the Head of Supplier Management of Interconnect, Passive, and Electromechanical Components for Newark. Her career in the electronic components industry has been focused on connecting industry-leading manufacturers to innovators through multi-channel sales and marketing programs. Heather has also held positions in marketing, sales, product management and operations within the heavy-duty automotive manufacturing industry. Heather completed her MBA from Loyola University with Dual Concentrations in International Business and Marketing and is the recipient of the 2019 Avnet Female Leader of the Year Award. She is an active member of the SPARK Development Committee and on the Board of Directors for Illinois Leadership Seminars, a youth leadership development program.
President, TTI Semiconductor Group and Corporate Senior Vice President of Business Development, TTI Inc.
Michael Knight is President of the TTI Semiconductor Group and Corporate Senior Vice President of business development at TTI Inc, a Berkshire Hathaway subsidiary. Michael has worked in the electronic components industry since the mid-1980s. He has held a variety of national and global leadership roles in sales, marketing, operations and general management, in both private and public companies. Prior to joining TTI, he worked for a number of electronic component distributors and manufacturers, and was a founder, President and COO of Substrate Technologies Inc., an advanced semiconductor packaging company. Knight holds several patents in the area of impedance controlled, high speed interconnect systems. He is a regular speaker at industry and supplier conferences where he covers technology trends and their ramifications for the industry, culture and commerce.
President, Women in Electronics
Jackie Mattox is the Founder/President of Women in Electronics headquartered in Southern California and recently accepted the role of National Distribution Director for Bivar, a leading specialty manufacturer of Enclosure Hardware, LED Indication, and LED Lighting products and solutions in Irvine, CA. Jackie started her career in the Electronics Industry during college at a small rep firm where she worked her way into the roles Sales and Distribution Manager. Jackie graduated from California State University Northridge with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication. Jackie has always had a heart for people and especially for women’s issues along with a dedication to education and leadership development. She believes that being evolved enough to know your own weakness is your biggest strength. This philosophy carries over into the WE organization where leadership development starts from within. Jackie values time with her loved ones, the experience that travel brings, and her time at home in the city of beautiful Laguna Niguel, CA with her friends, family, three children, and two dogs.
Global Head of Technical Marketing and Solutions Development, Newark
Cliff Ortmeyer is the Global Head of Technical Marketing at Premier Farnell. Cliff has an electrical engineering degree and has worked in the electronics industry for 28 years in a variety of engineering and marketing management positions. He has been with Farnell for 8 years, most recently as the Global Head of Technology Product Marketing and Solutions Development. Previously, Cliff worked for STMicroelectronics and Coilcraft in positions ranging from Applications Engineering to Market and Business Development.
Cliff holds multiple patents and is an electronics enthusiast who has a passion for understanding and leveraging new technologies. His current focus is on the role of new technologies and trends and how they impact the future of developing new markets like IoT through makers and engineers alike.
Vice President, Global Business Operations, TTI, Inc.
Melanie Pizzey is Vice President of Global Business Operations for TTI, Inc. She is responsible for leading and coordinating the global strategy for sales and product operations, training, development and supply chain services as TTI, Inc. continues to grow and expand. She manages business operations services in the Americas, Europe and Asia along with the TTI Global Resource Center in Nepal.
Prior to this role, Melanie has served in various positions at TTI including Vice President, Global Product Operations, Vice President Product Marketing, and Director of Product Marketing. She started her career at TTI in 1986 as a Management Trainee and worked in various positions in purchasing, product management, asset management, training and supply chain.
Melanie has been involved with ECIA for over 25 years serving as the Chair for the NEDA Roundtable, the Supply Chain Council and currently is active in the Global Industry Practices Council. She earned the Distinguished Service Award from NEDA in 2004 and ECIA in 2012 and is the Chair for the Executive Conference Planning Committee in 2019.
Melanie graduated from the University of North Texas in 1986 with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Management. She served as the Chair for the Department of Management, College of Business Advisory Board at UNT from 2008 — 2012 and was recognized as the Outstanding Alumna in 2008. Melanie and her husband Dave have two children and reside in Colleyville, Texas.
President, Shoshin Consulting
Shawn Rhodes is an international expert in dramatically improving the performance and profitability of organizations. His two degrees, international study of organizational execution on-site in more than two dozen countries and multiple combat deployments as a marine corps war correspondent prepared him for the battlefield of business. As president and founder of Shoshin Consulting, Shawn has consulted organizations ranging from fortune 100 and 500 companies to start-ups.
In 2014, Shawn was named one of the top 20 public speakers in the world by toastmasters international. In addition to his hundreds of published articles, videos, nationally-syndicated business column, podcasts and TEDx talk, Shawn and his work has been featured in Time, CNN, NBC, INC, and hundreds of media outlets around the world.
MBA Professor, Loyola University
Steve Sachnoff is a Consultant, Professor, and a demonstrated expert with more than 25 years years of domain knowledge in the Industrial Sector of the Semiconductor Industry. He has also started and lead two successful firms from the ground up. One was Mid-Start Technologies and quickly became the first Semiconductor Mega Rep in the Midwest, operating in 6 states. Mid-Star grew from $4 million in revenue to $65 million in revenue in 6 years. Steve successfully sold the company in 1996. As Vice President of the Industrial Business Unit at STMicroelectronics for ten years, Steve’s team achieved $300 million in revenue and a top market position in the USA dominating the Sector.
He has taught Marketing, Innovation Management, Sales, International Business, and Organizational Behavior at both the Undergraduate and MBA Levels. He also serves on advisory board of privately held firms.
Jennifer is an independent consultant with 28 years of involvement in the global manufacturing industry. Her career includes knowledge, skill and experience in technical sales and customer support, global training and development, global change initiatives and process improvements.
Jennifer is a Ph.D. student at Benedictine University, holds a graduate degree in Organization Development and is Green Belt Six Sigma Certified. She is an active member of The National Academy of Management and The Midwest Academy of Management. She is a member of the Benedictine University Graduate Business School’s adjunct faculty, where she teaches on the topics of Organization Behavior and Organization Development.
President and CEO, Thomas
Before joining Thomas in January of 2017, Tony served as CEO of Business.com, where he led the turnaround, build out and successful sale of the company in June of 2016. Prior to Business.com, Tony was CEO of UBM TechWeb, where he led the transformation of a declining print-centric business into a fast-growing digital media, live event and marketing services powerhouse. He also served as President of VNU Media’s Entertainment Group and Publisher of The Hollywood Reporter, building out and expanding the brands via digital media and live events. Uphoff was the founding CEO of Internet Media company Beliefnet and served as Publisher of InformationWeek in the mid-90s, growing the brand into the largest in the history of B2B media. Uphoff also served in several key management positions at Ziff-Davis during the company’s rapid growth in the early 1990s. Tony anchors the popular weekly Thomas Index video reports and has been named “Folio Forty C‑Level Visionary” by Folio Magazine, “Top Media Innovator” by Mins B2B and is regularly named in the Top 100 business media execs by B2B Magazine. Uphoff serves as a Trustee of Linfield College, sits on the board of HIMSS Media and serves a mentor at Mucker Labs.
Thomas provides actionable information, data, analysis and tools that align with and support today’s industrial buying process. Its solutions include the Thomas Network at Thomasnet.com®, industry’s largest and most active buyer/supplier network. Through Thomas Marketing Services, the company provides full-service industrial marketing programs and website development. Thomas Product Data Solutions helps manufacturers connect with design engineers through advanced CAD/BIM and data syndication services. Thomas Insights delivers original content to help marketers and supply chain professionals inform their decision-making, through leading titles including Inbound Logistics®, Industrial Equipment News®(IEN®),Thomas Industry Updateand the Thomas Index™.
Washington resident Ed Viesturs is widely regarded as this country’s foremost high-altitude mountaineer. He is familiar to many from the 1996 IMAX Everest Expedition documentary and in 2002, he was awarded the historic Lowell Thomas Award by the Explorer’s Club for outstanding achievement in the field of mountaineering. In winning the award, he joined an elite group of climbers including Sir Edmund Hillary. In 1992 he was awarded the American Alpine Club Sowles Awards for his participation in two rescues on K‑2.
Viesturs was born in 1959 and now lives on Bainbridge Island, Washington with his wife of 15 years, Paula, and their four children. He continues to go on adventures. On May 19th 2009 he made his 7th ascent of Everest. In January of 2011 he lead a climb of Vinson Massiff, the highest peak in Antarctica, at ‘16,066. Most recently in August, 2011 made his 208th ascent of 14,410’ Mt. Rainier.