2016 Convention Speakers
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Tom Burns

Tom has 20+ Years Consulting Experience for competitive service providers.


Tom Campbell, Principal, Olsen Thielen CPAs

Tom Campbell has 20+ Years Financial and Operational Experience within the Telecom Industry.


Shaun Carlson, Senior Manager of Information Technology, Arvig

Shaun is the Senior Manager of Information Technology for Arvig where he oversees the IT Operations for the company. The Information Systems group is responsible for the Architecture, Design, operation, maintenance and long-range planning for Arvig data networks. He has been with the Arvig since 2011 and brings over fourteen years of experience in the telecommunications industry. Shaun's background includes a broad range of IP and TDM technologies, service provider network and systems design, telephony, enterprise networking and web and database software development. Shaun holds a Bachelor of Science in Management Information Systems from North Dakota State University and an Executive Masters in Business Administration from the University of Mary.


Doug Dowling, National Sales Director, CommScope, Inc.


Tom Farm

Tom has 35+ Years Consulting Experience with the Telecom Industry.


Aaron W. Hautala, President, Red House Media, LLC

Aaron W. Hautala is the president at RedHouseMedia, a creative, strategy and public relations firm located in Brainerd, MN. Pulling from his nearly 20 years of experience Hautala leads his telecom clients through the process of creating sought-after identities throughout the Upper Midwest.


Weston Hecker, Sr Security Engineer/Pentester, Highpoint Networks

11 Years Pen-testing, 12 years security research and programming experience. working for a Network Security Company in the Midwest Weston has recently Spoken at Defcon 22,23 and over 40 other speaking engagements from telecom regional events to University's on security subject matter. Attended U of M Minneapolis Minnesota. Computer Science and Geophysics.


Dusty Johnson, Vice President of Consulting, Vantage Point Solutions

Dusty Johnson is a former PUC chairman, former gubernatorial chief of staff, and former DJ at his college radio station (KAOR, 91.1 FM). He currently serves as Vice President of Consulting for Vantage Point Solutions. His favorite band is the Beatles.


Tom Lambrecht, Great River Energy

Tom Lambrecht has led economic development programs at Great River Energy for 16 years, part of a long career in economic development at regional and statewide levels.


Mark Lofthus, Economic Development Director, Dakota Electric Association

Mark Lofthus manages development efforts at Dakota Electric in Farmington, with 28 years experience in economic development, mostly at the state level.


Kristy McDermott, Vice President Products and Services, Iowa Network Services


Mike Ockenga, Manager – IP Service, Finley Engineering Company

Mike Ockenga brings exceptional skills to the Finley IP Department with over 15 years of designing and operating complex networks and services. Mr. Ockenga leads the Services group in project implementation from installation through completion as specified by the Finley IP Design Group. System monitoring with customer notification and serving as the customer contact for projects are also managed by Mr. Ockenga. A strategic thinker and a meticulous project manager ensuring successful implementation, Mr. Ockenga has mastered network integrations, managed datacenter relocations, leadership of internal and external personnel and performed a number of architecture design and deployment projects. Mr. Ockenga’s extensive experience includes firewall solutions from Lucent, Juniper, Cisco and Fortinet. He also has acquired significant project experience in routing and switching with Cisco, HP, Juniper and Extreme Networks gear. Mr. Ockenga holds a BA degree in Computer Science and a BA Degree in Journalism from the University of Minnesota along with multiple certifications. Prior to joining Finley Engineering, Mr. Ockenga worked for Piper Jaffray and Companies, Inc., TIES, Inc., Zayo Bandwidth, Inc. and Onvoy, Inc. in network engineering positions.


Tym Rutkowski

Tim has 3 Years Regulatory Experience with the Telecom Industry.


Carissa Swenson, Consultant, Consortia Consulting

Carissa is the newest member of the Consortia Consulting team. She earned her Bachelor degrees in Business Administration and Business Education and her Masters Degree in Instructional Technology. She helps companies to educate their customers and employees on how to use personal technology and the high speed connections they have.


Bill VanderSluis

Bill has 20+ Years Engineering and Regulatory Experience within the Telecom Industry.


Dana Wahlberg, State of MN 911 Program Manager, Department of Public Safety / Emergency Communication Networks

Dana Wahlberg has been involved in the 9-1-1 industry for 27 years. For the past five years she has worked for the State of Minnesota as the 9-1-1- Program Manager in the Department of Public Safety Emergency Communications Division. In this role, she successfully oversaw the migration of all 104 MN PSAP from a legacy network to a next generation IP backbone network. Current initiates are revolving around a statewide text to 9-1-1 deployment, as well as the development of a statewide standards based geospatial database that will ultimately be required to route calls to the appropriate PSAP, provide more precise caller location, and identify the appropriate responder agencies for the incident. Wahlberg has a broad understanding of PSAP operations from her previous 22 years working in the Duluth, MN St. Louis County PSAP, where she began her public safety career as a call taker and dispatcher. Wahlberg is an active member in APCO, NENA, NASNA and MSA and serves as the Deputy Chair for the FCCs Task Force on Optimal PSAP Architecture (TFOPA).


Juan Vela, Senior Director of Solutions Marketing, Calix


Andrew Walding, President & Founder, CellStream, Inc.

Mr. Walding enjoys more than thirty years of hands-on/front-line experience in the communications industry. His experience spans access engineering, transmission systems, network management, network implementation scenarios, network and field operations. He has maintained a focus on emerging technologies: how new technologies are implemented, as well as how emerging technologies offer business opportunities.


Jerry Weber, Innovative Systems, VP

Jerry Weber has spent the past 15 years working on IPTV networks as an engineering consultant. Mr. Weber graduated from the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology (SDSM&T) in 2000 with a BS in Industrial Engineering (IE). Since starting his telecommunication career with Martin Group after receiving his IE degree, Mr. Weber has concentrated on IPTV networks including access, network and transport equipment, along with video headends, middleware, encryption, video monitoring, video subsystems and STBs, to include the first IPTV MPEG4 headend in the US telecommunications market. His primary focus has been with Tier 3 IPTV service providers but has also designed and implemented IPTV systems for Tier 1 and Tier 2 companies throughout the US.

Mr. Weber joined Innovative Systems in 2015 bringing his engineering consultant technical experience to the development of both the eLation and APMax product line. Mr. Weber’s experience with IPTV and FTTx systems is instrumental to enhancing the products to meet the next generation requirements of our clients.


Tony Zappetillo, Engineering and Operations Solutions Consultant, National Information Solutions Cooperative (NISC)

Tony Zappetillo Consultant to NISC's member owners and potential customers regarding engineering and operations products and efficiencies, internal procedures, and workflow. Minnesota native and technology enthusiast.

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