Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Cong. Adam Smith to Open SST Conference

Congressman Adam Smith will open the 2011 South Sound Technology Conference as the morning keynote speaker, and Egils Milbergs, executive director of the Washington Economic Development Commission, will provide the lunch keynote address.

The annual South Sound Technology Conference, which is hosted by the Institute of Technology at the University of Washington Tacoma and slated for Friday, March 11, is the technology showcase for Tacoma and the South Puget Sound. Since 2000 it has brought together leaders from industry, education and government from around the state to discuss and demonstrate technological innovations and their ongoing applications.

This year the conference will highlight the Institute of Technology's 10th year of service and education. Launched in 2001 through a combination of state and non-state investment, Gov. Gary Locke proposed the institute, which was championed by industry and approved by the Legislature, to address the growing demand for educated professionals for Washington's high-tech economy.

Congressman Smith is a strong supporter of innovated technology advancement and education, especially as it relates to investments in alternative fuel sources and biofuel technology.

On his website, Smith notes, "Locally, the South Puget Sound region has attracted many new high-wage, high-tech jobs. . To this end, I've joined and initiated conferences in our area that bring together leaders in technology, education and community development to share ideas and craft strategies for educating our workforce, attracting new businesses and making the South Sound a center of technology."

Egils Milbergs, a noted thought leader in competitiveness policy, champions the vital importance of U.S. technological, manufacturing and innovation leadership to long-term prosperity. He is advancing the concept and practice of regional innovation ecosystems in Washington.

Panel and keynote presentations - including networking opportunities - provide a venue to discuss, explore, understand and deploy technology as a solution, an opportunity and an advantage. Sessions planned for the South Sound Technology Conference include discussions on mobile application development, energy and sustainability, information technology as a driver of infrastructure in the South Sound and an open breakout forum designed to create a common calendar for technology related events and activities for the year ahead.

Panelists and speakers for the all-day conference include:
  • Matthew Tolentino, researcher, Intel Corp.
  • Beth Whitzel, lead developer at LESA (Law Enforcement Support Agency)
  • Brian Forth, CEO, Sitecrafting
  • Kevin Freitas, mobile applications developer, Sitecrafting
  • Angela Gow, senior webmaster, Multicare
  • Mark Brown, CEO, IdentityMine
  • Egils Milbergs, executive director, Washington Economic Development Commission
  • Andy Wappler, vice president for corporate affairs, Puget Sound Energy
  • Graham Evans, senior vice president, EQ2
  • Erik Hanberg, executive director of City Club of Tacoma; and chair, Tacoma Reads
  • Darrel Bowman, CEO, mynetworkcompany
  • Gary Bracket, Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber
  • Rick Shanaman, CEO, Optic Fusion
  • Jon Owen, director of information technology, DaVita
  • Linda Gerull, director of information technology, Pierce County
  • Andrew Fry, UWT, Institute of Technology
  • Orlando Baiocchi, director, Institute of Technology, UW Tacoma
  • Bruce Kendall, CEO, Economic Development Board of Tacoma-Pierce County

Throughout the day, graduate and undergraduate students from the Institute of Technology will showcase their work through poster sessions and demonstrations in the Gallery area.

The conference concludes at 2:15 p.m., followed by a mixer with conference participants and Institute of Technology alumni and faculty.

reposted from

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Egils Milbergs - Building the World’s Largest Science and Innovation Ecosystem

SST Conference Update:

Keynote lunch speaker bio for March 11th Conference:

Egils Milbergs is the executive director of the Economic Development Commission of Washington State. ( ).

The Commission is charged with developing a long term economic development strategy and making the state the most innovative region in the world. He was appointed by Governor Chris Gregoire on January 23, 2008 after a nation-wide search. He is a noted thought leader in competitiveness policy and champions the vital importance of US technological, manufacturing and innovation leadership to long-term prosperity.

In Washington State he is advancing the concept and practice of regional innovation ecosystems. He held previous positions as president and founder of the Center for Accelerating Innovation, president of the National Council for Advanced Manufacturing, president of the Institute for Illinois, Deputy Assistant Secretary for productivity, technology and innovation for the U.S. Commerce Department, and executive director the President’s Commission on Industrial Competitiveness.

Here is an abstract describing his presentation:

Egils Milbergs, after 25 years in Washington DC, accepted a new challenge in the “other Washington” to prepare the state’s long range economic development plan. Washington State is home to many innovative companies such as Microsoft, Boeing, Amazon, Starbucks, Costco and Real Networks. But what is next? The Pacific Northwest region is a case study on creating the world’s largest science and innovation ecosystem. This presentation will highlight the work of an 18 member public–private commission focused on transforming the economy to be more creative, open and collaborative.

Find out about the dynamics of government, business, academia and philanthropy in bringing about this change. A new public-private model for driving Washington’s economic future and the requirements for economic recovery and job creation will be discussed. These topics will be integrated into the foundation for the next update of the State’s long term economic development strategy and action recommendations to be presented to the Governor, legislature, congressional delegation and public later this spring.

After his presentation, Bruce Kendall, CEO of the Economic Development Board of Tacoma-Pierce County, will conduct a fireside chat with the speaker to cover more specific South Sound objectives.

Hopefully you have seen the press release from the EDB about Infoblox renewing its lease in Tacoma for another six years. Growing from sixty...