The Accelerate Live! Speakers

Rohit Arora

Founder, Vin'R Technologies

Rohit Arora is an AEC technologist, educated as a design and construction architect. He "interned" as an architect for five years before embarking on an adventurous journey as a technology consultant, trainer, design technology manager, and quality engineer. A technology trend hunter who avidly tracks and applies innovation to the profession. He is an Autodesk Certified Professional in AutoCAD and Revit, with 20 years of industry experience. He holds an MBA in Technology & Entrepreneurship from the University of California, Davis, and has worked in leadership roles for multiple San Francisco Bay area startups.

Eera Babtiwale, LEED AP BD+C

Vice President of Sustainability, Associate Principal, HMC Architects
BD+C 40 Under 40 Class of 2016

Eera Babtiwale started her career as a designer with a passion for sustainability. That passion developed into a skill set that HMC Architects noticed. Realizing they had a sustainable leader in their midst, they supported her every move and she has been on the fast track ever since. Today, she co-leads sustainable design efforts for projects firm wide. However, she by no means thinks that sustainability belongs in the hands of a few. That's why she's giving her coworkers the tools and motivation they need so that everybody at HMC can become sustainable leaders. Babtiwale sees every project as an opportunity to make a positive impact in terms of energy, water and waste use, but also in terms of educating and inspiring building users through the sustainable features of the built environment. As a regular speaker at sustainability conferences, she is charting a path for HMC to become a recognized leader in high-performance design. That path includes co-developing the Eco Charrette–a high-performance workshop – as a tool for HMC to use in order to achieve integrated sustainable design. She also co-led HMC's sustainable design retreat where they introduced earth-friendly design concepts and tools to HMC designers since they are the ones with the power to make sustainability a reality. She is also in the process of developing the sustainability component of HMC's CSR program, so that their sustainable design approach can extend to and support employee well being and lifestyles. Babtiwale's efforts are also making a difference in showing the savings in sustainable building. And with the 2030 Net Zero Challenge on the horizon, she is showing her clients that she is the expert and there are tangible and cost-saving reasons for the choices she is making for them architecturally.

Eric Carbonnier, PhD, AIA, LEED AP BD+C

Vice President of Sustainability, Associate Principal, HMC Architects

Eric Carbonnier has 28 years of experience, and is an architect and vice president of sustainability, focused on energy conservation strategies that lead to zero-net energy architecture. He strives to develop the vision and integration of sustainable strategies into every project he takes on. This includes ground water recharge strategies, water conservation, thermal and electrical on-site renewable energy generation, downdraft cool towers, and local material reuse. Carbonnier has secured over $2 million in grants and certified the second-largest USGBC Campus in California, ranked 7th nationally, and 9th globally. He was a Graduate Teaching Fellow and Researcher at the University of Oregon's Energy Studies in Buildings Laboratory, where he advanced high-performance windows using nano-fluid technology. Eric's sustainable design initiatives resonate throughout his career, and he has collaborated on numerous high-performance designs and award-winning projects. His dedication to sustainability, resilience, and energy independence resonates throughout his architectural practice and building science research. His approach brings the environment central to his regenerative development views and innovates solutions specific to every environment. Carbonnier's sustainable design initiatives resonate throughout his career, and has collaborated on numerous high-performance Pre-K–12 and community college projects designs. His career started at Montgomery Watson Harza (MWH) as an Environmental Engineer in 1989 focused on global water infrastructure projects. In 2000, Carbonnier joined HMC Architects' building partnerships with Pre-K–12 and community college clients throughout California.

Jeff Carpenter, PE, CNIDP, RCDD

Senior Principal and National Director of Technology, IMEG Corp.

Jeff Carpenter is a senior principal and National Director of Technology at IMEG Corp., where he leads many of the firm's largest, most complex projects. His work includes design for Fortune 500 corporate office complexes, mission critical data centers, greenfield hospitals, medical facilities, and higher education and government institutions. Jeff brings the latest technology advancements to assist in guiding project teams through analysis, conceptual design, design and construction phases. He is a frequent speaker at national and regional conferences on such topics as building technology convergence, Big Data, and the Internet of Buildings.

Steve Cavanaugh, AIA, LEED AP

Architect, Principal, and Design Leader, DLR Group

Steve Cavanaugh, AIA, LEED AP is an Architect, Principal, and Design Leader based out of DLR Group's Chicago studio. Steve has spent his 30-year career designing complex, technically-challenging building projects including office buildings, hotels, mixed-use developments, civic, educational, and transportation facilities. His projects share a common thread of planning clarity, functionality, materiality, and value. Steve's international experience has broadened his design perspective, elevated his approach to the art of construction, and furthered his passion for sustainable design solutions. As a design leader, Steve helps chart the course for the firm's sustainability goals, in particular DLR Group's adoption of the 2030 challenge. His hands-on approach and attention to detail has benefitted many clients and resulted in many award-winning projects, including two contemporary, ground-up, mass-timber office buildings for international developer Hines.

Chris Flint Chatto, Assoc. AIA

Principal, ZGF Architects

Chris Flint Chatto is a Principal and high-performance building specialist at ZGF. He focuses on integrating architectural design and building systems, working closely with project teams throughout all phases of a project to explore, identify and integrate sustainable design components, and optimize for building and occupant performance. His recent Rocky Mountain Institute Innovation Center project has been hailed as one of the highest performing buildings in the U.S., achieving Living Building Challenge petal certification with Net Zero Energy, and LEED Platinum certification, while operating "net positive."

Mani Golparvar, PhD, Associate Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

CEO, Reconstruct Inc.

During his 15 years in the industry, Mani Golparvar designed and built commercial buildings, infrastructure systems, and port facilities in the U.S. and abroad. With a PhD in Civil Eng from Univ. of Illinois, his research has contributed to developing computer vision and BIM solutions to empower project teams better plan, coordinate, and communicate on their jobsites. Golparvar is now leveraging his amazing exposure to the most creative people in construction, technology, and academic worlds to improve productivity of the construction industry as a whole.

Aeron Hodges, AIA

Senior Designer/Manager, Associate, Stantec Architecture

Aeron Hodges, AIA, is an Associate at Stantec Architecture. Her recent design projects include 100 Pier 4, Troy Boston, and Assembly Row Block 6 residential. She is also Co-founder of WHAT'S IN, a design research initiative aiming to find innovative urban housing solutions that are sustainable and affordable. Her work has been published by d3 Assemble, AIA Young Architects Forum, and Architecture Boston Magazine. She is the recipient of the ONEin3 Impact Award given by Boston Mayor Marty Walsh to outstanding civic leaders under age 35.

Tom Jacobs, AIA, LEED BD+C

Principal, Krueck + Sexton Architects

Tom Jacobs, AIA, LEED BD+C, Principal with Krueck + Sexton Architects, joined the firm in 1997 after receiving his Diploma of Architecture from the Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) in Zurich in 1995. From 1999 to 2002, he worked for Herzog and deMeuron in Basel and San Francisco on the New de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park, returning to K+S in 2002. Jacobs has been recognized by the national AIA as 2012 Young Architect for his "tireless dedication and devotion to the practice of architecture, to his clients, team members, and students," noting that "his guidance and aspiration for the profession is infectious."

Burcin Kaplanoglu, Ph.D.

Senior Director of Industry Strategy and Innovation, Oracle

Dr. Burcin Kaplanoglu is a recognized industry technologist, thought leader, keynote speaker. He is leading Industry Strategy and Innovation at Oracle's Global Construction and Engineering business unit. He frequently speaks and publishes articles related to Internet of Things (IoT), disruption of CE, investments and construction technology in industry publications. He was named one of Engineering News Record's "Top 20 Contributors Under 40" in 2016. He is also an adjunct professor at Northwestern University's McCormick School of Engineering since 2008. He has served as co-chair of semi-annual "Technology for Construction" Symposium for the Northwestern University since 2011.

Ricardo Khan

Senior Director of Innovation, Mortenson Construction

As the Senior Director of Innovation, Rick leads the Mortenson Innovators Program with a goal to inspire, engage and partner with all internal team members in the process of idea incubation, solution validation, and then to commitment and launch of new ways of working. Rick's focus is on Big 'I' Innovation that targets a 10x value creation. Prior to his current role, Rick Led Mortenson's Project Solutions department, focused on operations excellence. Project Solutions supports project teams from concept through closeout by providing expertise in project management, planning & scheduling, virtual design & construction, and innovation services. We have two key areas of focus, enhancing today's processes while creating the future state of construction through research and development.

Dr. Alan D W McLenaghan

CEO, SageGlass

Dr. Alan McLenaghan, CEO of SageGlass, is an 18 year veteran of the Saint-Gobain group, the parent company of SageGlass. Prior to becoming CEO, Alan served as SVP of Technology at Saint-Gobain's Containers Division (glass bottles), Global VP Manufacturing at Saint-Gobain Glass (flat glass) and Managing Director of Saint-Gobain Glass UK Ltd. He considers it the ultimate honor to have been asked by Saint-Gobain's executive leadership to bring dynamic SageGlass to the global market. Electronically tintable SageGlass is the most innovative product and technology to emerge in the glass and glazing industry since the advent of flat glass produced by the float process. Alan started his career in the late 1980s with the chemical companies, ICI and DuPont, working in several European countries, North America and China. He holds a B.S. in Applied Chemistry and a Ph.D. in Polymer Physics from universities in his native Scotland. Despite the executive titles, Alan considers himself a practical, straightforward Scot and was recently described by a well-known industry blogger as looking and sounding like a Scottish football (soccer) player.

David L. Morgareidge

Predictive Analytics Director, Associate Principal, Page

David Morgareidge has spent his 39-year, international design career focused on objective, quantitative facility performance optimization through the use of virtual, digital design environments. Early work included architectural energy analysis and IT leadership positions, including that of CIO. For the past nine years, he has applied predictive analytics to analyze and optimize clients' operational and financial performance, assuring that form actually does follow function. Utilizing discrete event simulation software, statistical analysis tools, lean techniques and Six Sigma methods, David models and optimizes the interdependent and synergistic relationships among facility spatial, technological, staff, customer, schedule, transport and work process elements. His projects' ROIs average between 10:1 and 20:1, with several engagements resulting in multi-million dollar construction and operational cost savings. In addition to work in the civilian sector, he has also performed simulation studies and developed standards for the Department of Defense's Military Health System and he is currently executing several projects for the US Army. David is pursuing foreign work in the UK, Germany, Australia, and Singapore and is a member of the Thought Leadership committee of the buildingSMART alliance.

Rene Morkos

CEO, ALICE Technologies

Rene Morkos' professional experience includes working as a project manager in Afghanistan, underwater construction in Lebanon, automation engineering on a $350 million gas refinery expansion in Abu Dhabi, and Virtual Design and Construction consulting around the world. He completed his PhD in Artificial Intelligence applications for construction as a Charles H. Leavell fellow at Stanford University.

David Polzin, AIA, LEED AP

Executive Director of Design, CannonDesign

David Polzin is CannonDesign's Executive Director of Design — championing our firm's design voice by seeking new paths to spark curiosity and imagination. In this role, he leverages innovation and talent across all of CannonDesign's offices to evolve design excellence, advance the firm's brand, and deliver superior design solutions for its clients.

Catherine Rose, PhD

MBA, Director of Staff Development, Skanska USA

Catherine Rose, PhD, leads development efforts for technical skills, software tool adoption and innovation at Skanska USA Building. As the Director of VDC Staff Development, she facilitates the University of Washington-Skanska Professional BIM Certificate Program. She is also a community manager for our Autodesk technical expert groups nationally. Dr. Rose works closely with the Preconstruction and Planning department and BIM360 Field Implementation Managers to promote innovation and tool use across the country. Previously, Rose led all sales, marketing and research initiatives for Philips Healthcare Lighting. She has been awarded Edison Awards for her innovative inventions: LightAide and HealWell. She graduated from Stanford University with her Doctorate and Masters in Mechanical Engineering and an MBA in Finance from University of Massachusetts Lowell. She graduated summa cum laude with degrees in Mechanical Engineering, Applied Mathematics and Spanish from North Carolina State University. Dr. Rose is a former adjunct faculty at Merrimack College in Operations Management.

Jimmy Rotella

Digital Practice Director, CannonDesign

Jimmy Rotella is CannonDesign's Digital Practice Director, focused on helping designers and clients leverage cutting-edge technology to create the most valuable built projects every time.

Greg Schleusner, AIA

Principal, Director of Design Technology Innovation, HOK

Greg Schleusner is a Principal and Director of Design Technology Innovation at HOK. In this role, he guides the firm in researching and adoption of new technologies ranging from data management to computational design. Schleusner is an advocate of open standards in AECO. He leads technical efforts within buildingSMART International as chair of the Technical Room. He is guiding the development of open source efforts around BSI standards and the development of a larger technical road-map for buildingSMART. Schleusner has an undergraduate degree in Architecture from Iowa State University and a Master's in Technology Management from Columbia.

Mark Skender

CEO, Skender

Since joining the firm in 1989, Mark has played an integral role in the development of the organization's values, long-term vision and strategic direction. He leverages more than 30 years of construction experience in his active oversight of the firm's operations, innovations and strategic planning. Under Mark's executive leadership, Skender has grown into one of the nation's largest and most admired construction firms with annual revenues exceeding $400 million. As a pioneer in Chicago's Lean construction movement, Mark helped create and implement the vision for Skender's industry-leading approach to lean project delivery. He is a frequent speaker and writer on the subject and a founding member of the Lean Construction Institute's Chicago Community of Practice. Mark is active in many business and philanthropic organizations. He is a board member of the Illinois Housing Council and sits on the board of trustees, as well as served as chairman of the board for three years, for Frances Xavier Warde Schools in Chicago. He actively served in the Builders Association of Greater Chicago (BAGC), the local chapter of Associated General Contractors (AGC), holding various officer positions, including chairman in 2000. Mark served as board chair from 2010 to 2014 for Hosteling International USA, a nonprofit organization promoting youth travel and cross-cultural experiences. He has served on its national board of directors since 2003 and served on the Chicago board between 1994 and 2007, including serving as chair between 2000 and 2002. During his tenure on the national board, Mark led the transformation of the organization from 23 separate local 501(c)(3) entities into a single unified national organization. He also serves on the board of directors for Skender Foundation, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization focused on strengthening communities through funding, volunteering and partnering. Mark earned his undergraduate degree in environmental engineering from University of Wisconsin-Madison and an MBA from Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management.

Tim Swanson

Chief Design Officer, Skender

Designer, urban planner, innovator, teacher, leader and entrepreneur, Tim leads Skender's team of architects and designers—bringing his passion for integrating the design and construction process to the firm's clients. Tim joins Skender from his former position of Chicago office director at CannonDesign, where he was the youngest office leader in the history of the century-old firm. In his decade there, Tim quickly grew into one of the firm's most dynamic leaders, overseeing a team of more than 200 architecture, engineering and planning experts. He also led its City Design practice, a national group focused on helping cities around the world grow and prosper. Tim is known for encouraging teams to pursue breakthrough design solutions that enrich health, education, community, science and more. Tim is focused on leveraging design to elevate the human condition in remarkable ways. Having lived in Abu Dhabi, rural India and major American cities like New York and Chicago, Tim brings a unique, global perspective to his design work. He is an advocate for smart growth and sustainable development, working with leaders at the intersection of urban planning, public health and education. He has vast experience identifying new ways design and strategy can positively influence socioeconomic conditions. And he has delivered successful solutions for cities, universities, businesses and institutions that enrich their holistic environments. Tim earned a Master of Architecture, with a specialization in urban development and infill, from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and undergraduate degrees in fine arts and economics and design from Colgate University. He is a member of the School of the Art Institute Chicago Design Council, University of Wisconsin Milwaukee School of Architecture Design Council and City Colleges of Chicago Architecture Advisory Board, as well as a board member of Archeworks. He was named to the NewCity "Design 50: Who Shapes Chicago" and the Building Design+Construction "40 Under 40" in 2017.

Lucas Tryggestad, AIA, LEED AP

Technical Director, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill

Lucas Tryggestad is Technical Director in the Chicago office of SOM, where he aligns project design concepts with technical solutions that are integral to the design process. With a portfolio that includes projects in the Chicago area and around the world, Tryggestad specializes in designing and realizing technically complex building systems. Interested in the craft of architecture, digital design, and quality project delivery, Tryggestad is involved in projects from conceptual development to execution. His hands-on, synergistic team approach leads to innovative projects that elevate design and technology standards and demonstrates his strong commitment to SOM's integrated approach to planning, architecture, and engineering. Tryggestad served as a lead technical designer on 401 North Wabash Avenue in Chicago, the city's second tallest building; OKO Tower in Moscow; The Broadgate Tower and 201 Bishopsgate in London; and the Bank of China Headquarters in Ningbo, among other projects.

Kyle Vansice

Architectural Professional, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill

Kyle Vansice is an Architectural Designer and Researcher at Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, and a Lecturer at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where he teaches parametric modeling and digital design. Vansice is a graduate of Iowa State University, with a MArch; MEng in Civil - Structural Engineering; Masters of Science, Human Computer Interaction; and a BS in Construction Engineering.

Anthony Viola, AIA, LEED AP

Senior Designer, Team Leader, Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture

Anthony Viola, Senior Designer and Team Leader at Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture (AS+GG), works on high-performance projects that focus on the design, development, and use of parametric computational tools that push the boundaries of integrated performance-based design. During his 12+ years of experience, Anthony has designed many structures through this integrated design process. He seeks to find new ways to realize a project using low-tech methods – such as 3D physical models – and high-tech processes like advanced computer simulations. By developing a clear idea of how each project fits into its site parameters and user conditions he is able to sculpt the building to its most efficient form. His methods have garnered attention in the architectural community, particularly in the younger generation, through dozens of workshops and other well-attended design events. He is a 2017 Dubin Young Architect Award winner as well as a 2018 National AIA Young Architect Award winner.

Jeong Woo, Ph. D.

Program Director of Construction Management, Associate Professor Civil and Architectural Engineering and Construction Management, Milwaukee School of Engineering

Dr. Woo is an Associate Professor and Program Director of Construction Management at Milwaukee School of Engineering, where he has been since 2007. He is an active researcher and educator in the field of Architectural Engineering and Construction Management, especially in Building Information Modeling (BIM), building energy efficiency, and construction information technologies. His teaching area includes design-build studio, BIM, construction estimating, scheduling, project management, and construction methods. Much of his work has been on the development of integrated building information framework for facility management. He presented his research findings numerously at Autodesk University, ASCE Construction Research Congress, ISARC (International Symposium on Automation and Robotics in Construction), ACADIA (Association of Computer Aided Design in Architecture), ASC (Associated Schools of Construction), and ASEE (American Society of Engineering Education).

Tomislav Zigo, AIA, LEED AP

Vice President, Virtual Design and Construction, Clayco Inc.

Over the past two decades, Tomislav Žigo has been actively implementing and using digital technology as a designer, builder, educator and researcher. His experience includes work in the vanguard of digital technology use on large institutional and corporate projects; research work in the field of virtual reality and building performance analysis; and mentorship positions in a number of local and national design and construction firms during their technology adoption. As the Vice President of Virtual Design and Construction for Clayco, he leads a multidisciplinary team of experts continually working on a range of construction projects, conducting in house R&D, integration of Remote Sensing technology via deployment of UAS, in-house training, professional services offering, and engaging professional community. This range of activities has propelled Clayco's VDC department in one of the most versatile and advanced digital technology groups in the country with a clear focus on tomorrow's technology in an integrated practice. Tomislav is a registered architect and holds a Master of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Rijeka in Croatia and a Master of Architecture degree from Washington University in St. Louis, where he currently teaches courses on the subjects of digital methodology integration and remote sensing into sustainable design practice.