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Arrow_rightRegister now | WPC 2015, July 12-16
Worldwide Partner Conference
Perspective. Viewpoints. Outlook. Our keynote speakers have it all.
 
Please join us, and hear from over 500 speakers – top worldwide subject matter experts, successful partners, satisfied customers, and independent analysts – as they share their expertise and experience with you. Our speakers are specialists in key subjects driving the technology sector worldwide, such as talent recruitment and retainment, profitability, business growth strategies, business leadership, sales and marketing, and real-world business scenarios marketing and selling Microsoft products and services.   

Make sure to schedule your favorite speaker’s sessions through our Sessions and Meeting Scheduler in WPC Connect.
Regional Keynotes
Per Adolfsson 
GM Microsoft, Sweden
 
Per joined Microsoft 2008 and has been the GM for Microsoft Sweden since 2009.
Per has a extensive experience with more than 25 years in the IT industry in companies like Compaq and HP.

Microsoft AB was founded in 1985. Today the company has 460 employees and an extensive product and service portfolio with Windows, Windows Phone, Office 365, X-box and Surface.
 
 
 
 
Jonas Alstermark
Director SMS&P, Microsoft Sweden
 
Jonas joined Microsoft May 1st 2013 as the Director of Small and Midmarket Solutions and Partners Group.

Jonas has a extensive experience with 20 years in the IT industry in companies like HP, Veritas Software and Information Highway.

Microsoft AB was founded in 1985. Today the company has 460 employees and an extensive product and service portfolio with  Windows, Windows Phone, Office 365, X-box and Surface.
 
 
 
Luis Banhara
Business Director for corporate customers, Microsoft Corporation
 
The executive started his career at Microsoft in 1995. In a two-year interval between 2005 and 2007, he worked at SAP. Banhara returned to Microsoft Brazil in 2007 to lead the activities of mass markets and was also Director of Business subsidiary.
 
Today's Business Director for corporate clients.
 
Luis Banhara has a degree in computer science from PUC-SP, with a Masters in Marketing from Escola Superior de Propaganda e Marketing (ESPM).
 

Clare Barclay
UK Small and Medium Solution and Partner Group Lead, Microsoft Corporation
 
Having heard from Microsoft’s global executive team, here what Clare has to say about the impact on UK partners and the important focus areas for the year ahead.

Clare has a career at Microsoft spanning over 15 years. Clare has held a number of roles in Microsoft, most recently heading up our SMB business responsible for: SMB market growth and revenue through the channel. Before heading up the SMB team, Clare was Director of Partner Strategy & Programmes, Clare was responsible for leading the channel strategy and partner programme for Microsoft UK. Clare has been in the IT industry for more than 20 years. Her diverse experience working for Microsoft spans 15 years, during which time she has occupied a number of senior positions in the company across partner, European strategy and the enterprises services divisions. Before joining Microsoft, Clare held a number of business development and marketing related roles within the IT channel and distribution.
 
 
Cindy Bates
Vice President, Small Midsize Business & Distribution (SMB&D), Microsoft Corporation
 
Cindy Bates is Vice President of Microsoft’s US Small-and-Midsized Business & Distribution (SMB&D) group, driving the company’s end-to-end SMB marketing, sales and distribution efforts, including SMB strategy, business development, regional field sales and national distribution sales, channel marketing and customer marketing.  As the founding executive of Microsoft’s US SMB&D organization, Cindy has led the development and implementation of key programs and resources for SMB channel partners, including the robust sales and marketing enablement resources available on the Ready-to-Go partner marketing portal; lead generation opportunities like the Microsoft Community Connections program; and business development support, as provided through the Top VAR and Cloud Champions Clubs, all designed to help Microsoft SMB partners grow and thrive.

With a wealth of management experience and expertise in sales, marketing, strategy and corporate development, Bates is a 13-year Microsoft veteran. She started her career at Microsoft in the company’s Corporate Development and Strategy group. Subsequently, as General Manager of Microsoft’s US Small Business Group, she was an early champion of the SBSC program and the establishment of the Partner Territory Manager role to serve SMB partners. Prior to her current role, Bates was Vice President of US Partner Strategy, Marketing and Programs, responsible for the broad engagement with Microsoft’s partner ecosystem, including driving partner readiness and enablement for the launches of Windows 7 and Office 2010.

Bates holds bachelor’s degrees in international economics and molecular biology from the University of Michigan, and an MBA from Harvard University. She is active in Seattle-based non-profits.
 
 
Martin Berchtenbreiter
General Manager Small and Midmarket Solutions & Partners, Microsoft Corporation
 
Martin Berchtenbreiter (43) is responsible for the Small and Midmarket Solutions & Partner Group (SMS&P) at Microsoft Germany. He reports directly to the Area Vice President Germany, and is member of the Management Board at Microsoft.

During his studies of business administration Berchtenbreiter worked in the product marketing group of AT&T. He subsequently joined Microsoft’s OEM marketing business in 1996. After several management positions in OEM marketing, business management and sales for the German-speaking area and EMEA (Europe, Middle East, Africa) he was appointed OEM EMEA Business Manager with responsibility for the sales business in southern Europe. From 2006 to 2009, Berchtenbreiter served as Senior Director OEM Germany holding responsibility for the Original Equipment Manufacturer business. The OEM business covers all licensing agreements with PC manufacturers who preinstall Microsoft products on their computers.

Berchtenbreiter is married. In his spare time, he frequently rides the road bike. He also has a passion for outdoor activities in Canada and Norway and is an avid reader and wine connoisseur. 
 
 
Alain Bernard
 
Microsoft announces the nomination of Alain Bernard to the position of Director of the Division SMB & Partners (SMS&P) Microsoft France.
 
After 2 years spent as Partner Sales Director within the Division SMB & Partners, Alain Bernard takes officially the lead of this Division succeeding to Hélène Auriol who has been promoted General Manager of Microsoft Singapore.
 
Alain Bernard, 44 years old, is a graduate of the ENSIIE Engineering school, formerly known as IIE, and has a Master’s degree in Marketing of ESSEC Business School.
 
Alain knows well the business and began his career in the world of entrepreneurship. Indeed, at the end of his studies, he founded a small SSII then created a real estate company before joining IBM as Director Marketing SMB and Partners, Director Marketing France and Global Business Sales Director.
 
After more than 10 years at IBM, he joined Microsoft France in December 2007 as Sales Manager Manufacturing & Professional Services in the Division Large Accounts (EPG) and then returned to the sector of SMB, where he made his debut by becoming in January 2010, Partner Sales Director  in the Division SMB & Partners.
 
 
Jack Braman
US East Region Vice President, SMS&P, Microsoft Corporation
 
Jack Braman leads the East Region for Microsoft’s SMS&P Group in the United States.  In this capacity, he is responsible for small & mid-market solutions strategy, partner marketing, as well as the Reseller, ISV, and Services Partners that cater to the small & mid-market customers.

Jack Braman’s last role was General Manager of the Server Platform Group for the U.S. subsidiary.  In this role he is responsible for overseeing the marketing and sales strategy for the Microsoft server line within the U.S. marketplace.

Mr. Braman brings to his position over 25 years of experience, 20 of those years with Microsoft, in developing and executing successful sales and marketing strategies in the information technology industry.  Prior to his current position, he was the General Manager for Microsoft’s Desert Mountain District where he led sales, marketing, systems engineering, and consulting across seven states. 

Other roles within Microsoft have included serving as Director of the West Region Education Group, General Manager of U.S. Enterprise and Channel Sales, and Sales Manager for the Phoenix and Southern California territories.

Prior to joining Microsoft, Mr. Braman worked with Nynex Business Centers, where he was responsible for customer account sales in Orange County.  He also served as a marketing sales representative for the IBM Product Centers towards the beginning of the Personal Computer era.

Mr. Braman earned a B.S. in management from Pepperdine University and currently resides in Charlotte, North Carolina.
 
 
Marco Bravo
Business Director for the corporate market, Microsoft Corporation
 
With over 20 years’ experience in the IT market, Marco Bravo held various positions at IBM, including the Director of Industry Solutions and Business Development, IBM Software Group Latin America and Director of Software at IBM Brazil. He also held the position of general manager of Rational Software Latin America.
 
Marco Bravo has a degree in Electronic Engineering and an MA in Telecommunications Systems PUC Rio, plus an Executive MBA Coppead / UFRJ. The executive is a member of the Brazilian Institute of Corporate Governance, which is part of the commission of governance studies for the healthcare industry.
 
He was hired by Microsoft in November 2010 and today is Business Director for the corporate market.
 
 
Alvaro Cells
Vice President, Microsoft Asia
 
Alvaro Cells is Vice President of the Sales, Marketing, Services, IT, & Operations Group (SMSG) for Microsoft Asia Pacific. In his role he leads an organization which spans all Microsoft products, services, and technologies. With expertise across consulting, customer service, marketing, sales and technical support, and the group is the engine behind the successful adoption and use of Microsoft solutions and technologies by customers in the region.

Alvaro has more than 20 years of experience at Microsoft. Previously, he led the operations of Microsoft’s Multi Country Americas (MCA) region, the third largest region in Latin America and the Caribbean after Mexico and Brazil, from August 2008. This region covers a vast territory including the Caribbean, Central America, and part of South America (Bolivia, Ecuador, Paraguay and Peru).

As leader of MCA, he grew the business at three times the rate of IT spending in these markets, and successfully built a new country organization and leadership structure that serves as a reference to other emerging markets across the world within Microsoft. On the corporate social responsibility front, social investments within this region to schools and educational institutions impacted 100,000 teachers and 200,000 students in fiscal year 2009, and this region had the largest social impact in Latin America through the execution of programs, grants and partnerships across the region.

Alvaro is a well-versed speaker on several industry topics including cloud computing and national competitiveness.

Alvaro first joined Microsoft in Venezuela, where he was the eighth employee of the subsidiary as the Program Manager for Servers, Operating Systems and Development Tools. He has held numerous leadership roles in the company including General Manager of the Venezuelan subsidiary, as well as Guatemala and El Salvador, where his work on developing the business in these two countries later led them to become independent subsidiaries.

Alvaro was born in Maracay, Venezuela, and holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science from Universidad Simón Bolivar, CumLaude (Caracas, 1990). Alvaro is married to Aleida Serron, and the two enjoy their twins, son and daughter, Alvaro and Andrea, as well as their latest addition, son Andres.
 
 
Michael Clark
Vice President for Small and Midmarket Solutions and Partners (SMS&P) in the West Region, Microsoft Corporation
 
Michael Clark is Vice President for Small and Midmarket Solutions and Partners (SMS&P) in the West Region for Microsoft Corporation.  He is responsible for the marketing and sale of Microsoft commercial products and services to small and medium-sized business customers in the Western United States.  In addition, he is responsible for ensuring the overall health of the Microsoft partner ecosystem, as well as deepening relationships with managed partners in the region.

A 15-year Microsoft veteran, Clark has held a variety of sales and leadership roles and has a long standing track record for delivering strong business results and driving improvement in customer satisfaction.

Michael resides in Bellevue with his wife and three children. He has a strong commitment to philanthropy and is always looking for opportunities to align to that passion.
 
 
Alain Crozier
President, Microsoft France, Vice-President, Microsoft International
 
As President of Microsoft France, Alain Crozier is responsible for the sales and marketing activity of Microsoft in France, overseeing an organization of 1,700 employees.

Since joining Microsoft in 1994, Crozier has held a variety of financial leadership roles in the Sales, Marketing and Services organization including Finance & Administration Director of the France subsidiary, Regional Controller for the Americas and South Pacific region, and Worldwide Sales Controller before being promoted to SMSG CFO.

As Corporate Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of the Sales, Marketing and Services Group (SMSG) at Microsoft, Alain Crozier was responsible for the financial leadership of SMSG's worldwide organization of 46,000 employees located in over 100 countries, which included overseeing financial and strategic planning, reporting and analysis, controls and compliance, and financial and business performance management.

Prior to joining Microsoft, Crozier was finance, planning & analysis manager at Lesieur Alimentaire, a subsidiary of  Eridania Beghin Say in Paris. He also held several audit and finance positions within Lesieur Alimentaire as well. Crozier started his career at Peat Marwick Consultants in Paris where he specialized in planning process design, functional reorganizations and process reengineering.

Crozier graduated from University Claude Bernard with a bachelor's degree in mathematics and social sciences, and from the Institut Superieur de Gestion in Paris with a Business Administration degree.

Crozier is married and has twins. In his spare time, he enjoys photography, traveling with his family, skiing, soccer and discovering new wines from around the world.

 
Wim Delbeke
General Manager SMS&P, Central and Eastern Europe, Microsoft Corporation
 
Wim Delbeke is the General Manger for small and medium sized businesses and partners (SMS&P) of the Central and Eastern European Headquarters at Microsoft. Wim is responsible for the customer and partner strategy across 32 subsidiaries.
Wim is in his role for four years now. He achieved a double digit growth, growing customer and partner satisfaction and is very focused on landing the Devices and Cloud strategy together with our partners across CEE.  He is also a member of the Central and Eastern European Headquarters Leadership team at Microsoft.

Wim Delbeke joined Microsoft more than 20 years ago. Prior to his current role he was the Senior Director of Microsoft Dynamics France, the Senior Director of Small Business and Transactional Partner at Microsoft Western Europe, and held numerous leadership roles in Microsoft Benelux. Prior to joining Microsoft, Wim worked for Toshiba Information Systems.  He started his career at the Ministry of Justice in Belgium.
 
 
Jane Dickson
General Manager, West Region, Small, Mid Market Solutions and Partners Business, Microsoft Corporation
 
Jane Dickson is the General Manager of the Small, Mid Market Solutions and Partners business for the Managed Partner business in the West Region.  In this role, Jane is responsible for the company’s overall business relationships with Microsoft’s Managed Partners who service our top small and medium-size customers (1 to 3,000 employees) throughout the Western US.  Her division is in charge of creating business strategy and engagement plans for over 150 partners, including new go-to-market plans and sales models.  She brings to her position more than 24 years of information technology experience.

Jane started with Microsoft in 1997 as the Corporate Account Executive for Starbucks, Nordstrom, Costco and Boeing, where she established key strategic eCommerce wins, established strategic initiative at Starbucks with the “Store of the Future” and worked with solution providers to help establish SQL Server 7.0 as the primary infrastructure platform for decision support projects at Boeing and Nordstrom.  Jane also managed the Enterprise business in the Pacific Northwest which focused on the largest 335 enterprise customers in the area.  Jane then went on to a position as the Business Manager of the US Subsidiary where she served as representation to the US field teams, marketing groups and customer strategy teams and led a team of five General Managers to create version I of the Sales Execution Framework (SEF) focused on establishing business process around customer engagements and sales forecasting.

Prior to joining Microsoft, Jane spent 12 years at IBM.  Jane served as the West Region Open Systems Storage manager for IBM Corporation.  Other positions held within the company included storage marketing consultant for IBM’s storage division; senior sales specialist for the Boeing/US West accounts; and marketing representative for the Weyerhaeuser account.

Jane holds a BA in Economics from the University of California at Berkeley.  She resides in Seattle Washington with her husband, Ron, and two 2.5 year old old twin boys Kevin and Eric.  In her free time Jane enjoys cycling, hiking, triathlons, traveling, reading and cooking.
 
 
Charbel Fakhoury
Vice President - Middle East and Africa Region, Microsoft Corporation
 
As Vice President for Microsoft Middle East and Africa of Sales, Marketing, and Services, Charbel Fakhoury’s responsibilities span across one of the most vibrant and diverse regions in the company.  His role is to lead Microsoft’s Regional Headquarters and business covering 79 countries, and enable people and companies realize the value of software innovation for socioeconomic development in the MEA region, while fostering an employee culture of leadership and diversity.

His previous role began in October 2005 as the General Manager of Microsoft Gulf, which includes countries such as Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, and the UAE.  Under his leadership, Microsoft Gulf was voted “The Best Subsidiary” globally, twice over a period of three years and recognized formally by Microsoft CEO, Steve Ballmer.

Fakhoury joined Microsoft in December 1998 as the Business Development Manager for the East Mediterranean region. In 2003, he was promoted to a Subsidiary General Manager of Eastern Mediterranean countries covering Lebanon, Jordan, Cyprus, Iraq, Syria, and Malta. Headquartered in Beirut, he was responsible for the success of the brand new offices in these countries, with a focus on growing people and building organizational capabilities. He successfully reached out to governments, NGOs, academia, and incubators, to foster innovation, entrepreneurship, and social development, ultimately helping build their knowledge-based economies.
 
His knowledge and understanding of the Middle East region and the power of Information Technology has been instrumental in empowering the region’s youth.  He has focused on supporting programs such as Women in IT (WIT) and several other education-related initiatives, which has helped bridge the gender divide and equip the next generation with the skills needed to thrive in today’s ever-changing economic environment.

Prior to joining Microsoft, Fakhoury worked as a Sales Manager for Sun Microsystems in the Levant region.  Previous to that role, he was the Sales and Marketing Manager at Automation and Computer Technologies in Lebanon.

Fakhoury received a Bachelors degree in Computer Science from the Lebanese American University. In 2006 he attended Executive development program at Wharton University Pennsylvania in 2006. In 2010 Arabia computer news, voted him as the #1 most powerful executive among the top 25 in the Middle East.

During his spare time, he enjoys spending time with his big family while his hobbies include art collection, reading and outdoor water sports.
 
 
Eva Fors
Director of Marketing and Operations, Microsoft Sweden
 
Eva joined Microsoft 1995 and has been Director of Marketing and Operations since 2012 in the Swedish subsidiary. Eva has an extensive experience as a leader within IT – both within sales and marketing. Eva has worked as a leader in both B2B and B2C – just recently as European sales manager for Emerging Technologies/Incubation Sales within Microsoft Western Europe. Besides her role at Microsoft, she is also member of the board at Connect East, Sweden, which is an association bringing venture capitalists, entrepreneurs and competence together.
 
 
 
 
Patricia Freitas
Director of Public Sector of Microsoft Brazil
 
Patricia Freitas joined Microsoft in 2012 in the position of director of public sector. With over 20 years’ experience in the IT industry, Patricia add passages by companies such as CPM Braxis, Unisys and IBM, always occupying positions of management or board with a focus on business development and sales. Prior to Microsoft, She was president of DBA Systems Engineering.
 
Patricia Freitas has a degree in Data Processing from Fluminense Federal University and an MBA in Business Administration IBMEC.
 
 
 
 
Maria Garaña
President, Microsoft Spain
 
María Garaña Corces is the President of Microsoft Spain. She has a MBA from Harvard Business School, an International Trade Diploma by Berkeley University and a Bachelor degree in Law and Business Administration from San Pablo University in Madrid (Spain).

María Garaña joined Microsoft in 2002 as Chief Operations Officer for Microsoft Mexico. After three years, she moved to Argentina, as Microsoft Regional VP for the South Cone (Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay)

Before joining Microsoft, María Garaña worked for several companies in Europe, United States and México, including Zoom Media Group, Television Azteca Group, Merrill Lynch International, Andersen Consulting and Citibank.

Ms. Garaña is a member of the Board of Directors of Junior Achievement Foundation and SERES Foundation and is the President of the Foro Con-R, non-profit organizations that promotes social equity and CSR. María Garaña is member of the Governing Board of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) She is also member of the ESADE Professional Board and the American Chamber of Commerce Board in Spain.
 
 
Don Grantham
President, Central and Eastern Europe, Microsoft Corporation
 
Don Grantham is President of the Central and Eastern European region at Microsoft. In that role, he oversees Microsoft’s operations in 9 subsidiaries servicing 32 countries, employing over 3,500 people.
Mr. Grantham is responsible for ensuring a positive experience for Microsoft customers and partners in the region and engages with government leaders, business makers and community representatives throughout the area.

Prior to joining Microsoft, Mr. Grantham was Senior Vice President and Chief Sales Officer at Hewlett-Packard. He also spent nine years at Sun Microsystems, culminating in his last position as Executive Vice President of Global Sales and Services.  Don Grantham started his career in high tech with IBM. During his 17 years there, he held numerous leadership roles, including executive management responsibility for Sales in Northern Europe.

 
Yasuyuki Higuchi
President & CEO, Microsoft Japan Co. Ltd., Japan and Corporate Vice President, Microsoft Corporation
 
Yasuyuki Higuchi became president and CEO of Microsoft Japan on April 1, 2008. Founded over 20 years ago in 1986 and with a workforce of more than 2,000 employees, Microsoft Japan is Microsoft’s second-largest subsidiary. Also, because Japan is home to some of the world’s most advanced consumer and commercial technology, Microsoft Japan plays a major role in supporting the company's broad initiatives and objectives.

Higuchi joined Microsoft in March 2007 as the COO of Microsoft Japan. He exemplifies a rich combination of strategic vision, tactical execution and broad business leadership developed by working at leading international companies in Japan including Boston Consulting Group, Apple, Compaq Computer and Hewlett-Packard.

After spending ten years at Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. fresh out of Osaka University as an engineer, Higuchi sharpened his business acumen and strategic thinking at The Boston Consulting Group K.K. In 1994, he took on a marketing role at Apple Japan, Inc., gaining valuable experience in the consumer business before joining Compaq Computer KK in 1997.  When Compaq Computer merged with Hewlett-Packard in 2002, Higuchi became Vice President & General Manager of Industry Standard Servers at Hewlett-Packard Japan, Ltd., quickly ascending to President in 2003. In 2005, he took on the challenge of leading the restructuring of a struggling retailer, Daiei Inc.—the second largest retailer in Japan—as President, successfully completing its revitalization prior to joining Microsoft.

Higuchi holds a bachelor’s degree in Engineering Science from Osaka University and an MBA from Harvard Business School.

 
Kamilla Jørning Roost
Sales Manager, SMVs, Microsoft Corporation
 
Kamilla Jørning has been Sales Manager for SMVs since January 1st 2011. In this role Kamilla is responsible for the marketing and sales of all Microsoft products to SMVs in the Danish and Icelandic market. Sales are driven in close cooperation with a broad array of partners, including distributors, value-add resellers, ISVs plus hosting and cloud partners.

Kamilla joined Microsoft in 2003 and prior to this Erik worked seven years at NCR/AT&T. From 1997 to 2003 at Compaq, later at HP following the merger between the two of them as Business Unit manager.

Prior to this role, Erik was director of Business Groups & Marketing from 2005 and was responsible for the day to day running of Microsoft Denmark. He was responsible for the five groups of products: Client (Windows), Information Worker (Office), Servers, Microsoft Business Solutions and Mobile telecom (Windows CE). During his time in this role, Denmark was awarded “Best Large Sub in the World” due to best Scorecard on top of meeting Revenue and contribution margin.
 
 
Erik Kaae
Director, SMSP, Denmark
 
Erik Kaae was appointed director of SMSP, Small and Medium size customers, Solutions & Partners for Microsoft Denmark in 2009. As such, he is responsible for sales of all Microsoft products to small and medium sized companies, all Microsoft partners, Dynamics business and Iceland. In this role, Erik focuses on developing a strong relationship with Microsoft partners to ensure a solid partner ecosystem for continued growth for both Microsoft and partners.

Prior to this role, Erik was director of Business Groups & Marketing from 2005 and was responsible for the day to day running of Microsoft Denmark. He was responsible for the five groups of products: Client (Windows), Information Worker (Office), Servers, Microsoft Business Solutions and Mobile telecom (Windows CE). During his time in this role, Denmark was awarded “Best Large Sub in the World” due to best Scorecard on top of meeting Revenue and contribution margin

Erik joined Microsoft in 2003 and prior to this Erik worked seven years at NCR/AT&T. From 1997 to 2003 at Compaq, later at HP following the merger between the two of them as Business Unit manager.

Erik’s background is cand.polyt degree (MSc) in Computer Science from DTU (Denmark Technical University), where he also has a lectured. Further to this he has a HD (MSc in Economics) in Organization.
 
 
Janet H. Kennedy
Vice President, Central Region Enterprise & Partner Group, Microsoft Corporation
 
Janet Kennedy is Vice President of the Central Region Enterprise & Partner Group (EPG) for Microsoft Corporation.  In this capacity she leads a sales and marketing team that serves 638 enterprise clients and numerous partners in 18 Central Region states.

Prior to her current post, Kennedy was Vice President of the West Region Enterprise & Partner Group where she led a sales and marketing team who served 290 enterprise clients and numerous managed partners in the 11 West Region states.

Previously, Janet served almost three years as General Manager for the Midwest District where she was responsible for managing sales, marketing, partners, systems integration and consulting in the three state district consisting of Indiana, Illinois and Wisconsin.

Kennedy has more than 20 years of experience in sales and marketing of business solutions to the retail, hospitality, and consumer packaged goods industries.  She joined Microsoft in 2002 as the Regional Director of Sales for Microsoft’s largest retail and hospitality customers in the Southeast United States, leading her team to a 30% growth in sales.  Kennedy also served as the Managing Director for Microsoft’s Retail and Hospitality industries, accountable for Microsoft’s strategy, channels and solutions for retail and hospitality customers. 

Before joining Microsoft, Kennedy spent 19 years with IBM in several roles within IBM’s Distribution Industry.  Most recently, she was the client unit executive, managing sales teams that handled retail and consumer packaged goods customers.  Previous assignments included regional business unit executive for IBM’s Distribution Industry and business unit executive, IBM Supply Chain solutions.   

Kennedy received a degree in Industrial Management/Industrial Engineering from Purdue University in W. Lafayette, Ind. and earned her MBA from McColl School of Business, Queens University in Charlotte, N.C.  She also completed IBM’s Harvard Client Executive program.
 
 
Michael Kogeler
COO and CMO for Microsoft Corporation in the Middle-East and Africa region (MEA)
 
Michael Kogeler is COO and CMO for Microsoft Corporation in the Middle-East and Africa region (MEA), responsible for Operations, Marketing, Products and Strategy in the region. In his role he is part of the senior leadership team and he reports into Vice-President of MEA.

In his current role Michael focuses on driving and operationalizing the global Microsoft strategy ensuring the local variables and environment are being taken into account with the goal to maintain the Microsoft growth and leadership position and execute on the global strategy. He has a close working relationship with the Corporate Vice-Presidents of product groups and customer segment sales divisions in defining the strategies and practical execution of these in the Microsoft MEA countries.

Described as passionate for technology and business with a broad in-depth knowledge, focused, sharp, dynamic, quality and results focused and demanding, Michael was born in 1969 and grew up in the Netherlands. After university he joined McKinsey & Company where he worked for 4 years in various consulting roles in Amsterdam, New York and Jakarta. After leaving McKinsey he worked at KPMG Management Consulting, Lotus and IBM Consulting, had an IT-Consultancy startup and worked at EDS Consulting on the business process side large outsourcing projects. During his time at Microsoft Belgium and Luxembourg, joining in 2003, Michael has been Business and Marketing Director (COO), Online Services Group Country Manager and General Manager for the Consumer and Online Division. In his last role before current he was working directly for the President of Microsoft International as Director Strategic Projects where he was responsible for driving the international Cloud Computing Strategy of Microsoft International, defining the world-wide SMB GTM Cloud Strategy and Windows Phone international GTM strategies and plans.

Michael is Dutch from origin, has a Belgian passport, lives in Dubai, is married to Katrien Haesendonck and has 2 young kids, Leon and Janelle. In his free time he enjoys new technology, sports like running, golf, sailing and spending time/travelling discovering the MEA region with his family.
 
 
Marianne Lindhard Moe
 

Marianne Lindhard Moe has been with Microsoft for one year, she joined Microsoft June 2011 as Director for Dynamics in Denmark and Iceland.

The Danish Dynamics Business covers the sales and marketing activities for the 4 products AX, NAV, CRM and C5 in Denmark and Iceland. The products are covering the Enterprise market, the SMB market and also public sector.

Dynamics is a partner driven business and all deals are sold by partners, scaling through partners are crucial for success. 

Marianne has many years ERP experience from Danish, Nordic and Northern Europe Companies. She has been Country manager and Service Director for Lawson Software in Denmark and held Director Positions for some of the biggest Oracle and Baan partners in Nordic.
 
 
Michel Levy
President of Microsoft Brazil 

He is graduate in Civil Engineering from the Polytechnic School of the University of São Paulo, USP, and MA from Stanford University (USA), Levy accumulated long experience in the industries of Information Technology and Telecommunications.

In the 80s, Levy founded and directed the group CompuMarketing, who worked in the area of services and distribution of software and hardware. He served as Director of Technology Promon, and as COO of BCP Telecommunications and general manager of Motorola's paging company in Brazil. Before being appointed as president of Microsoft Brazil, in October 2006, Levy held the position of COO TIM, one of the largest mobile operators in the country, which he joined in 2003.
 
 
Max Long
President, Microsoft Canada 

As President of Microsoft Canada, Max Long is focused on helping consumers, students, partners, businesses and public sector organizations realize their full potential. Committed to making positive contributions to Canadian communities through its citizenship efforts, Max is also dedicated to ensuring Microsoft Canada is a great place to work.

Over his 15 years with Microsoft, Max has helped shape the company’s sales, partner and marketing strategies. With more than two decades of working with enterprise customers in the technology industry, he is known across the industry for seeking smarter ways to serve customers and partners, as well as emboldening enterprises to make the moves necessary to thrive and better compete.
In his previous role as Vice President of Worldwide Corporate Accounts, Max led a global team with a mandate to grow revenue and competitive share while building customer and partner relationships and driving customer and partner satisfaction.

Originally from the United Kingdom, Max recently relocated from Redmond, Washington to Toronto with his wife and two children. In addition to spending time with his family, Max enjoys competing in triathlons and snowboarding in his spare time. Before joining Microsoft, Max spent nine years at IBM where he worked in a variety of sales functions across segments and industries. 
 
 
Christian Mehrtens
Director Small and Midmarket Solutions & Partners, Microsoft Corporation 

Since February 2013 Christian Mehrtens is Director of Small and Midmarket Solutions & Partners. In this position he is reporting to Petra Jenner, Country General Manager Microsoft Switzerland, and belongs to the board of Directors.

Christian joined MS Germany in 2003 where he led the Partner Sales team within the SMS&P organization. In 2007 he became Director of the Information Worker Department, in charge of the planning, controlling, as well as the Launch Product-Marketing for the Office 2010 portfolio. In February 2011 he joined the country leadership team of Microsoft Switzerland as Director Marketing & Operations.

Before his time at Microsoft, Christian Mehrtens held different management and marketing functions within Oracle, Compaq and HP.

Christian holds a degree in economics from the University of Münster and has been working in the IT industry since 1991.

He is German, married and father of two sons. In his spare time, he enjoys hiking in the mountains, biking and at summer time he is a passionate sailor.
 
 
Meetul Patel
General Manager for SMS&P India, Microsoft Corporation 

Meetul Patel is the General Manager for SMS&P India and is responsible for the development and management of Microsoft’s Small and Medium Business customer base. In this role, Meetul helps establish and execute Microsoft’s strategy in this large and fast-growing segment.  This includes developing plans to increase the adoption of technology, raising awareness of Microsoft’s solutions, establishing and maintaining a strong partner ecosystem aligned with the strategy, and developing a collaborative working relationship with these partners to help deepen and grow their customer base.
 
Prior to this role, Meetul was the General Manager of Microsoft’s Services business in India. In this position, he was responsible for bringing together IT Strategy, Solutions Implementation, and Critical Support services to help clients across industries effectively leverage technology to address their business challenges. 
 
Before joining Microsoft, Meetul spent over fifteen years in management consulting at Capgemini, Mercer Oliver Wyman, and Accenture. During this time, he helped numerous Fortune 500 companies identify new opportunities, develop business strategies, and undertake major transformation programs across multiple business functions.  His clients included major global players in the Financial Services, Healthcare, Computing, and Communications industries.
 
Meetul holds an MBA in Strategic Management and Finance from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering Physics (Department of Nuclear Engineering) from Rensselaer.
 
He is married with two children, enjoys travelling with his family to experience new cultures, sights, and sounds. He is based in New Delhi, India.
 
 
Markku Pulkkinen
Director, Small and Midmarket Solutions & Partners, Microsoft Oy, Finland 

As the SMS&P Lead of Microsoft Finland, Markku leads Microsoft’s Midmarket and SMB businesses and partnerships in Finland. In his role, Markku is developing how people and businesses can improve their productivity and potential by utilizing technology solutions. He has led a significant market transformation to the Cloud and in a relatively short period of time the Cloud has become a norm of deploying IT solutions.

Markku has more than 22 years of leadership and business development experience in global software companies. Before joining Microsoft he worked at Oracle where he had leadership and business development roles both locally and internationally (US and Europe). He is an experienced business leader with good people management and development skills.

Markku lives in Espoo, Finland with his wife, daughter and a dog. Markku plays ice-hockey and occasional golf, and does yard work in his spare time.
 
 
Carlo Purassanta
General Manager Microsoft Italy 

He was appointed General Manager of Microsoft Italy on January 2013. Previously he served as Enterprise Services Area Lead for Microsoft France.

Before joining Microsoft in 2011, Purassanta worked at IBM for over fourteen years, leading several segments in France and Europe. He served as Network Services Executive, Director of Infrastructure Services and Senior Business Development Executive for Strategic Outsourcing in Southwest Europe. He was also the official IBM’s spokesperson on cloud strategy.

Purassanta is 41 years old. He was born in Milan, and has been living in Rome, Milan, Paris and Madrid. He graduated at Politecnico di Milano University and then moved to France. He also studied in the UK for an MBA at the Henley Business School. On a more personal basis he likes to travel, play tennis, listen to and play music, and is fond of photography and architecture.
 
 
Ari Rahkonen
General Manager, Finland, Microsoft OY 

Ari Rahkonen is General Manager, Microsoft Oy Finland, Western Europe Region. In this role, Rahkonen is responsible for leading Finland’s subsidiary and he belongs to Western Europe’s Leadership team.

As a subsidiary leader, Rahkonen is dedicated to driving Microsoft to serving citizens, businesses and communities around the world. Microsoft’s innovative technologies and local partnerships are transforming education, fostering local innovation, and creating employment opportunities which help fuel a continuous cycle of sustained social and economic development. Rahkonen’s leadership reflects these values and his deep personal commitment to customer and partner satisfaction which results from long-term and trust-based relationships.

During his career, Rahkonen held a number of leadership positions including Cluster Unit Executive, Large Accounts - Finland, Business Unit Executive, Software - Nordic Region and Country Manager, Software Unit - Finland at IBM. His key achievements were double digit growth in 2005 and approximately 7 % growth in 2006. He also succeeds in transforming the sales team from product sales into solutions sales.

Rahkonen was Managing Director of Lotus Development Finland Oy in 1999-2001. His key achievements were grew successfully Lotus business faster than the competition in the Finnish Market, becoming the market leader. He also re-developed indirect sales channel for Lotus Software Solutions in Finland and the Baltic area.

As a Business Manager of Fujitsu Software Corporation, Rahkonen worked two years in the USA. He succeeds to create and implement new business models in the U.S. market. He developed direct and indirect sales channels for the Fujitsu next generation wireless data product through U.S. telecommunication operators and their Internet service providers.

Rahkonen holds B.Sc. (Econ) marketing degree from Espoo Business College. He studies MBA degree while working and will graduate soon.

As an innovative and active personality, Rahkonen finds time for exercising sport like basket ball, golf and motor cycling. He has four children, wife and lives in Espoo.
 
 
Barry Ridgway
Sales, Marketing and Services Vice President, Microsoft Latin America 

Barry Ridgway is the Vice President of the Sales, Marketing and Services Group for Latin America, based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The SMSG VP is a strategic position, which has a key role managing a large matrix organization. In this capacity, Mr. Ridgway is responsible for managing the overall business in the region including all 9 Microsoft subsidiaries with over 2,000 employees and 80,000 business partners. He is responsible for driving commercial and consumer marketing strategies, in addition to, services and business processes to support Microsoft’s business units and partners.  Additionally, Barry serves as the leader of LATAM Area Headquarters and is responsible for leading the Area portfolio, aligning all customer segments within the region with global strategy.

Before joining LATAM, Mr. Ridgway was the General Manager of SMS&P (Small, Medium Solutions & Partner Group) for Microsoft UK since August 2010.  During his tenure in the UK, the business grew 30% to $1.3B, gaining share through strong channel engagement and execution, in one of Microsoft’s fastest-changing businesses, and one of the most competitive markets in the world. 

Prior to this appointment Barry Ridgway worked as the Chief of Staff for the Office of the Chief Operation Officer (COO) at Microsoft; where he was responsible for supporting the COO with all aspects of Sales Marketing and Services business planning, strategy development, and operational management. He was also responsible for managing the COO’s external engagement with customers and partners across 80+ subsidiaries in over 190 countries around the world.

Barry has been at Microsoft for 17 years, 12 of which were in the WW Public Sector Sales organization. Barry worked as the Government Industry Sales Director for Microsoft Asia Pacific for 3 years. He spent 8 years in the Microsoft US Public Sector group where he managed the US Air Force & Defense Agency business and served as Regional Sales Director in Microsoft’s US State and Local Government Industry Group. Barry also spent one year working at Microsoft’s WW Public Sector Headquarters in Redmond, WA as Director of Operations and Business Strategy. Prior to joining Microsoft, Barry worked for a US based Large Account Reseller in Sales and Marketing for 3 years.  

Barry Ridgway, his wife and two children will be relocating to Florida, U.S.A, in the coming months.
 
 
Dagfinn Ringås
 

Dagfinn Ringås is director for Small and Medium Sized Solutions & Partners (SMS&P)  in Microsoft Norway. This means responsibility for the subsidiary’s largest sales and marketing segment together with Microsoft’s partner relations and programs.

He has been with Microsoft for 7 years and previously held positions as Director, Microsoft Office Business Group, Director Microsoft Business Solutions and Marketing Manager, Microsoft Business Solutions. Before joining Microsoft, Dagfinn worked six years for Norwegian CRM company SuperOffice and two years for the Sydney based software company, Network 4 Business.
Dagfinn has an MBS from Sydney Business School and a Bachelor in North American Studies and Political Science from the University of Oslo.

Dagfinn is married, with two kids, and passionate about team sports, apline skiing, tennis and rock ‘n’ roll.
 
 
Niels Soelberg
GM, Denmark, Microsoft Corporation 

Niels Soelberg is Microsoft’s GM for Denmark since July 2012.

Niels Soelberg was appointed the Vice President Public Sector for Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) in September 2009. He drove Microsoft’s efforts to help governments and citizens in the region leverage technology to drive transformation and digitalization in the public sector. In this role, Mr. Soelberg worked closely with the Microsoft Area Public Sector General Managers across all of Europe, Middle East and Africa to align strategies, share government best practice implementation in the countries to meet the requirements of these to fuel economies and provide efficient citizen services.

As a member of the Microsoft Worldwide senior leadership team, Mr. Soelberg also played an integral role in helping shape global Public Sector strategies for a better engagement with Governments and Microsoft Partners operating within this sector.

Niels Soelberg joined Microsoft in 2001, leading the Services and Support organization for Northern Europe. In 2004, he was named senior director for Enterprise and Partner Group sales in Western Europe before being appointed General Manager for Microsoft Public Sector in Western Europe in July, 2007.  In these years, he contributed strongly to the success of the Public Sector business by recruiting specialists within the Public Sector to his team. With a deep knowledge of regional and national governments, healthcare, education and Public safety and national security, this team optimized the value of Microsoft technology to both Public Sector customers and the Public Sector partner network, and continues to do so today.

Mr. Soelberg has over 20 years of experience in the IT business, starting at Hewlett Packard as EMEA Business Development Manager for the Industry Software Vendors ISV´s such as Informix, Oracle, SAP, Sybase and Dun & Bradstreet Software. Niels then moved to AT Kearney/EDS where he was budget and services responsible, leading the strategic large outsourcing projects for EDS Nordic.

Niels Soelberg has spoken at numerous international conferences on the topic of technology in the public sector. In particular the topic of cloud computing and how this technology has positive impact on economy and environment (Friends of Europe roundtable; Microsoft Europe).

He lives in Copenhagen with his wife and their son. In his spare time he enjoys spending time with his family, traveling, golf and canoeing. Niels holds an Academy Profession (AP) Degree in Leadership and Management.
 
 
Dr. Adam Steltzner
Manager, Planetary Entry, Descent and Landing and Small Body Access Office at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory 

Adam D. Steltzner is the manager of the Planetary Entry, Descent and Landing and Small Body Access Office at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.   Most recently he led the Curiosity Entry, Descent and Landing team.  After a slightly misspent youth playing rock and roll, Adam restarted his education and eventually received his BS in Mechanical Engineering from UC Davis 1990. He went on to earn his MS in Applied Mechanics from Caltech in 1991 and his Ph.D. in Engineering Physics from UW Madison in 1999.  Adam joined the JPL in 1991 and has worked on various projects including Galileo, Cassini, Mars Pathfinder, Champollion, and Comet Nucleus Sample Return, and Mars Exploration Rovers.  His research interests include, structural dynamics, input force determination, aerodynamic decelerators, mechanical design and systems engineering.  His management interests include in how attitude and leadership can produce high performance teams.
 
 
Ernst-Jan Stigter
Vice President, Sales, Marketing and Services, Central and Eastern Europe, Microsoft Corporation 

Ernst-Jan Stigter is the Vice President, Sales, Marketing and Services, for Microsoft in Central and Eastern Europe. 

Mr. Stigter brings 17 years of executive leadership experience in the ICT industry to his current role. Before joining the Central and Eastern European Headquarters, he was General Manager of Microsoft Greece. Prior to that, he led the Business Marketing & Operations organization, and the Enterprise & Partner Group at Microsoft in the Netherlands, where he started in 1999.

Before joining Microsoft, Mr. Stigter worked at Tandem, Compaq, and HP, where he was responsible for the Financial Services industry. He is an ardent proponent of technology and innovation as catalysts for constructive change and growth.
 
 
Bernd Stopper
Director PS&P, Microsoft Corporation 

Bernd Stopper (47) is responsible for the Partner Strategy & Programs Division (PS&P) at Microsoft Germany. He reports directly to Martin Berchtenbreiter, GM SMS&P and member of the Management Board at Microsoft.

After finishing his studies of product engineering at the University of Applied Science in Furtwangen with the Dipl.-Ing. degree, Bernd Stopper joined Microsoft in 1995. He worked within several marketing positions where, amongst others, he managed the Marketing Organisation for midmarket customers, was responsible for the launches of Windows XP and managed the office product. Before he overtook the PS&P Lead, Stopper established a sales-related, customer-centric Marketing within the M&O Organisation.

Bernd is married and has two teenage boys aged 14 and 16 who keep him mentally and physically fit. In the summer, Bernd likes to spend his time hiking in the mountains with his family and friends; in the winter, he goes down to the valley on skiers.
 
 
Efrem Z. Stringfellow
Regional Vice President, Corporate Accounts 

Efrem is an experienced leader in the high tech industry currently serving as Microsoft’s Central Region Vice President.  In this capacity Efrem and a diverse team of sales, technical, marketing and services professionals are responsible for delivering sustained business value to Microsoft’s small to midmarket customers and partners (SMS&P) across the 18 central states in the United States.  Efrem’s performance metrics include a $1.6B+ annual revenue target for Microsoft products, increased customer satisfaction, strong partner ecosystem, growing Microsoft’s software market share, employee satisfaction, marketing effectiveness and community relations.  

Efrem joined Microsoft in 2007 after more than 20 years in the technology industry.  During his  tenure with Microsoft SMS&P he has worked as both an Area General Manager and Regional General Manager in the East and Central Regions.  Efrem has a track record of driving strong results, whether measured as revenue attainment, growth or scorecard performance.  His leadership style seeks to collaborate, empower and drive the right level of shared accountability across sales, partner, technical, marketing and licensing, all with the objective of exceeding the expectations of our clients and partners in the marketplace.

Prior to Microsoft he served as Vice President, Sales and Marketing for NEC Corporation of America’s Solutions Platform Group. In this role, Stringfellow led and directed a team of senior sales professionals, systems engineers and marketing professionals in the sale, installation and implementation of enterprise hardware, software, services and solutions.

Stringfellow also served as Senior Director of Sales, Channels and Marketing for Silicon Graphics, Inc., where he led a team of executives in developing nationwide sales and marketing initiatives to build revenue and boost client satisfaction.

As Regional Vice President of Sales and Services for IBM Corp., Stringfellow led a team of executives and salespersons in the creation and sale of IBM enterprise hardware, software and solutions across multiple industries.

Stringfellow holds a master’s degree in business administration with concentration in management from the J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University, and a bachelor’s degree in business with concentration in marketing from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana.

Stringfellow currently lives in Naperville, Illinois with his wife Crystine. He is the father of four children.
 
 
Gail Thomas
Vice President, West Region, US Enterprise and Partner Group, Microsoft Corporation 

As Vice President for Microsoft’s West Region Enterprise Business, Gail Thomas and her team are responsible for working with Microsoft’s largest Enterprise customers in the Western United States to deliver technology solutions that empower their organizations and achieve business transformation.  In addition to leading strategy and solution sales, Thomas is responsible for aligning with strategic partners who build and deliver solutions on the Microsoft platform. 


Prior to this role, Thomas led Microsoft’s US State and Local Government Team for 6 years.  In this capacity, Thomas and her team worked with customers and partners to deliver government technology solutions that enabled States and Local government entities realize value and meet the challenges of 21st century governing.  Thomas’ team was responsible for delivering programs and solutions in the US marketplace including a broad variety of E-Government, Security and Privacy initiatives.  Thomas played a key role in Microsoft US Citizenship efforts with initiatives such as Elevate America, a program for workforce development and a key partnership with State governments across the US.

A 20 year Microsoft employee, Thomas has held a number of senior leadership roles as Chief of Staff for Worldwide Sales and Marketing; and GM Enterprise Sales and GM for the Consumer, Small and Medium Business Sales Groups for Microsoft Canada.

Prior to Microsoft, Gail held positions with Lotus Development and Western Digital Corporation in sales capacities.
 
 
Rodney Williams
General Manager Server Sales 

Rodney Williams assumed responsibility of the Brazil Services Sales organization and Mr. Williams leads a Professional Services group that is focused on providing Microsoft based technology and business solutions.
Mr. Williams has over 20 years of in-depth management, technical and sales experience.  In addition to his current role, he has held various roles within Microsoft.  As an Enterprise Practice Manager, he had Sales and Delivery responsibility for the West Region Services Sales organization, East Region Financial Services Consulting and Support business.

Mr. Williams’s strength is his diverse background that includes technical architecture, services sales, delivery management, large project program management (over $20 million), and business development. He received his Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and MBA concentrating in Management Information Systems and Finance from Lewis University. He is an outdoor enthusiast for all Athletics, Boating, Skiing and Hiking.