Our Speakers

Great speakers talk from the heart, with passion for their subject. We’re excited to have some of those great speakers on deck, ready to prepare you to unlock your website’s potential.

  • Karen McGrane

    CEO, Managing Partner – Bond Art + Science | @karenmcgrane

    Karen plays nicely in the content strategy, information architecture, and interaction design sandboxes. She is managing partner at Bond Art + Science, a UX consultancy she founded in 2006, and formerly VP and national lead for user experience at Razorfish. She also teaches Design Management in the Interaction Design MFA program at the School of Visual Arts. Her two books, Going Responsive and Content Strategy for Mobile, were published by A Book Apart.

  • Derek Featherstone

    Lead Accessibility Consultant – Simply Accessible | @feather

    Derek Featherstone has been working as a web professional since 1999 and is an internationally-known speaker and authority on accessibility and web design. He leads the team at Simply Accessible, based in Ottawa, Canada. Derek always puts the user first and strives to make the web a better place by designing experiences that are easy to use for everyone, including people with disabilities. Derek’s ideal accessible experience combines engaging and rich content with brilliant design and technical development excellence. That user-centered focus sets the course for Simply Accessible, and—more importantly—their clients.

  • Amanda Costello

    Amanda Costello

    Lead Content Strategist, College of Education & Human Development – University of Minnesota | @amandaesque

    Amanda Costello is the lead content strategist in the University of Minnesota’s College of Education and Human Development (CEHD), where she works with college administrators, directors, and department-level content strategists to direct comprehensive strategy. Amanda is an award-winning speaker on working with content specialists and the web, building web teams, and sharing ideas to do good work. She enjoys filling out forms because it feels like taking a test where she knows all the answers.

  • Ahava Leibtag

    Ahava Leibtag

    President, Aha Media Group, LLC | @ahaval

    Ahava is passionate about content and prides herself on tackling the toughest content projects. She has more than 15 years of experience in writing, messaging, and marketing, and is a well-recognized content expert. Her first book, The Digital Crown: Winning at Content on the Web was published by Morgan Kaufmann. Ahava is the president and owner of Aha Media Group, LLC, a content strategy and content marketing consultancy founded in October 2005.

  • Ravi Jain

    Ravi Jain

    Senior Associate Director, Digital Media and Web Development, Boston College | @ravidjain

    Ravi is a prolific multimedia storyteller, with 25 years experience in implementing new technologies to engage audiences. A short form video evangelist, he has received numerous awards and recognition for his work, including a Webby Award nomination for his “talk-show in a car,” DriveTime.

    Jain currently manages strategic digital media solutions for Boston College’s Office of University Communications. He also teaches in the Digital Media program at Northeastern University’s College of Professional Studies.

  • Chris Corak

    Chris Corak

    Chris Corak, Partner, SEO + Technical Content Strategy at ONWARD | @chris_corak

    Since 2000, Chris has been obsessed with the art and science of SEO. Before venturing out on his own to co-found his consultancy, ONWARD, Chris lead the search optimization team at one of the largest agencies in Arizona. He’s helped Fortune 500 clients—like Avnet, Olive Garden, and Aetna—achieve amazing results with a holistic approach that blended UX, SEO, and technical content strategy. Chris believes in the magic of cross-discipline teams and knows that together we can achieve much more than any department could on their own. At ONWARD, his new mission is to help large organizations bridge the gap between UX, content, and SEO.

  • Rick Allen

    Rick Allen

    Principal, ePublish Media, Inc. | @epublishmedia

    Rick Allen has worked on the web his entire career to help shape communications and content strategy. Rick is co-founder of Meet Content, an online resource aiming to empower higher education to create and sustain web content that works. As principal of ePublish Media, Inc., a content strategy consultancy in Boston, Mass., Rick partners with organizations big and small to drive and sustain bold goals.

  • Emileigh Barnes

    Emileigh Barnes

    Content Designer, 18F | @emileighoutlaw

    Emileigh Barnes is a content designer at 18F. An advocate of plain language and the Oxford comma, you can check out her work at everykidinapark.gov, beta.fec.gov, and in academic and literary journals. She’s the author of two poetry chapbooks. If not at work, Emileigh’s probably watching West Wing reruns or hanging out at the dog park with her boxer, Huckleberry Finn.

  • Kate Garklavs

    Kate Garklavs

    Content Designer, 18F | @ueberkatester

    Kate Garklavs is a content designer at 18F, where she helps federal agencies with long-range planning and crafting impactful, user-centered content. She’s worked on my.uscis.gov, standards.usa.gov, labs.usa.gov, and more.

    A longtime lover of language, Kate earned her MFA in fiction writing from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Before joining 18F, she led editorial and education strategy at Scripted.com, and also designed online fine arts coursework. Find her on Twitter as @ueberkatester.

  • Deane Barker

    Deane Barker

    Partner and Chief Strategy Officer, Blend Interactive | @gadgetopia

    Deane is a founding partner at Blend Interactive with more than 18 years of web experience, including implementation of large-scale enterprise content management systems and intranets. Deane is a regular speaker on the content management and strategy circuit and writes about various web technologies at Gadgetopia. He is also the author of Web Content Management: Systems, Features, and Best Practices.

  • Scientist

    Pipette Gilson

    Research Scientist, World Wide Web

    Pipette is researching laboratory tools to transport a measured volume of web smarts to #NowWhat17. Ok, she’s not a “real” speaker, but she is our mascot.

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