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KMFest - Knowledge Festivals
GPMC 2016
Global Project Management Competence
April 13 - 14, 2016 in Detroit


Dr. Thomas Baumann
CEO & President, orbitak International LLC


For over twenty years, Thomas Baumann has been involved with project and program management, corporate strategy and governance, stakeholder management, and educational services.

He has been affiliated with Volkswagen both in Germany and in the US, working in customer satisfaction, strategy consulting and managing the VW AG – Project Management Competence Center. Skilled in project management strategy and implementation, Thomas also serves as a consultant to numerous international corporations.

His experience also includes the world of academia: recent projects were administering the Michigan Advanced Technical Training (MAT2) program (based on the German dual-education system), and the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAACCCT) Grant Program (which involved 12 Colleges in 10 states).

Thomas was a member of Board of Trustees of the German national Project Management Association (GPM) and is now elected Director of Education of the IPMA-USA. He has lectured on project management and business management in Africa, India, Brazil, Slovenia, Panama, Australia and Germany and has served as key note speaker, member of the program committee and presenter at international conferences. Thomas is also member of the KM-Fest-Core team and member of the international strategic committee of CRI Program Smart Machines & Systems (SM&S).

Currently, he is the CEO and President of orbitak International, LLC.

Contact speaker at: info@orbitak-international.com

Irene Spanos
Director, Oakland County Economic Development & Community Affairs

Keynote Speaker: Oakland County’s Global Strategies

Irene Spanos was appointed director of the Department of Economic Development & Community Affairs by Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson in 2011. As director, she oversees the department’s six divisions: Business Development, Planning, Finance, Workforce Development, Marketing & Communication, One-Stop-Shop Small Business Center and Community & Home Improvement.

Before her appointment, she spent seven years with the county as a senior business development representative, specializing in the bio-technology and medical devices sectors and was involved in the launch of Medical Main Street, the county’s initiative to grow the life sciences and health care industries in Southeast Michigan.

She also worked with companies headquartered in Europe and growing their presence in Oakland County. Irene is a member of the Swedish, German & French American Chambers of Commerce, and Southfield’s Healthcare Corridor board. Spanos sits on the Mechatronics Certificate advisory board for Oakland Community College, on the advisory board of Oakland University’s Incubator: OU INC and is a member of the Michigan Economic Developers Association and the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) Research Group.

Follow: IreneSpa

Contact speaker at: Spanose@oakgov.com

Mary McKinlay
Vice President IPMA

Topic: The Global Requirements and Strategies to Establish Successful global Teams

Mary McKinlay is a Vice-President of IPMA and a Trustee and Board Member for the International Center for Complex Project Management (ICCPM). She is an Honorary Fellow of APM and a Fellow of ICCPM.

Following a degree in Systems Engineering, Mary’s career encompassed working on large multinational projects as well as internal IT projects.  She is a project management practitioner and, after 30+ years in aerospace and defense, working with GEC-Marconi and BAE Systems, founded Mary McKinlay Projects Ltd. in September 2005.  That same year, she was appointed as an Adjunct Professor of Project Management at Skema Business School and taught at the Lille and Paris Campuses.

Her industrial experience has been complemented by work on research programs, involving collaboration internationally between industry and academics. She has produced many papers and is a frequent conference speaker on the worldwide stage.

The prospect of interesting young people in engineering careers is a passion of hers and she is also a STEM Ambassador with special responsibilities as a Bloodhound Ambassador (Bloodhound SSC project).
Currently, Mary is a teaching fellow at the National Centre for Project Management at the University of Hertfordshire and an External Examiner for the University of Northumbria.

Christopher Svensson
Ford Design Director - Americas

Topic: Global Car Design Projects: The Ford Perspective


As Ford’s Design Director – Americas, Chris Svensson oversees the design teams responsible for developing all new products in the North and South American regions as well as supporting Ford’s Global Design activities. He has been in the role since January 2014.

His career with Ford began in 1992, as an Exterior Designer in Ford of Germany’s Design Studio. Since then, Chris has held a number of key positions in North America, Asia Pacific and European regions. His international credits include vehicles such as the Mustang, Fusion, Explorer, Edge, Escape, Ranger, and F150 to name but a few….

Prior to the role Chris currently holds in North America, he was Design Director, Ford Asia Pacific and Africa, where he was responsible for the Asia Pacific Design Centre in Melbourne, Australia.

Before his time in Asia Pacific, Chris was the Chief Designer, Commercial Vehicles, for Ford of Europe, where his responsibilities included the lead of the UK Design Studio.

Bernd Beyer
Vice President - Product Management, Volkswagen

Topic: Success: The Right Product in the Right Market with Professional Project Management

A twenty year veteran of Volkswagen, Mr. Bernd Beyer currently holds the position of Vice President of Product Management for the North American region.

Mr. Beyer began his Volkswagen career as a Product Engineer during the early 90’s.  His career at Volkswagen has progressed from its beginnings in Product Research, Plant Operations and Management. Throughout his career, Mr. Beyer has developed extensive product development and management experience during his assignments in Asia, Europe, and North America.

Dr. Miles Shepherd
Vice President, Association for Project Management

Topic: Ensuring Quality in Global Project and Portfolio Management

In a 35 year career in project management, Miles has led a variety of projects in the UK, Eastern Europe and Russia, mainly implanting IT systems and managing organizational change. His most recent work has centered on the development of project management techniques used to decommission nuclear reactors in Slovenia, UK, Ukraine and USA. Miles works with government agencies, universities, the media and professional societies (Association for Project Management, International Project Management Association and PMI) to improve the understanding of project management. He led the development of ISO 21500 and chairs ISO TC 258 responsible for project, portfolio and program management standards.

Further information is available at http://pmworldjournal.net/team/executive-team/miles-shepherd/

Mark Homrich
Manager of Siemens Teamcenter for Product Management PLM Software

Topic: Siemens Experiences, Success, and Lessons Learned regarding Product Lifecycle Management


Mark Homrich joined Siemens PLM in December of 2009.  Prior software industry experience includes business development and technical sales leadership roles at Primavera (a leading portfolio, program and project management vendor, now part of Oracle) and Planview.  He also has experience in ERP and MRO software applications.  General industry experience includes executive roles at consumer good and commercial products manufacturing companies.

Mark Homrich is responsible for the Teamcenter applications product management team. He is responsible for defining the vision of these applications and ensuring they meet the strategic needs of Siemens customers in today’s world of global products, globally managed product life cycles (global PLM) and global projects.  He works closely with multiple Teamcenter development teams to plan product release content and technical strategies.  He is engaged with strategic customers as they plan their deployment of these applications to optimize their business processes.

Mark holds a Bachelor in Industrial Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology.  He can be contacted at: mark.homrich@siemens.com

Dr. Daw Alwerfalli
Lawrence Technological University

Topic: Educational Institution Cooperation with Industry to Provide Project Management Competencies

Joining Lawrence Technological University in 1990, he won the 2004 LTU Outstanding Engineering Faculty award. Dr. Alwerfalli is currently a Professor of Mechanical & Manufacturing Engineering.

Daw founded Manufacturing Engineering Solutions (MES) in 2000, which has developed executive training programs for Chrysler, Ford, GM, Exxon Mobil, Conoco Philips and others.

An expert in complex manufacturing systems, quality and process improvement, engineering project management, Daw has developed quality management systems that led many organizations to certifications in ISO 9000:2008, ISO 14000, TS 16949, etc.

He currently serves on the steering committee of MAT2 (Michigan Advanced Technician Training), evaluating college readiness to join the MAT2 program. Under a $148 million federal grant, Daw also serves on the steering committee of LIFT (Lightweight Innovation for Tomorrow), developing curricula and skills for the next generation workforce in Michigan, Ohio, Indiana and Tennessee. In addition, he was the recipient of the 2009 Arab American of the Year in Education and has served on the Governor’s Advisory Council for Arab American and Chaldean Affairs.

Contact speaker at: dalwerfal@ltu.edu

Dr. Rajat K. Baisya
Chairman, Strategic Consulting Group

Topic: Managing Successful Projects in India: Strategies for Foreign Companies

Dr. Rajat K. Baisya is the Chairman of Strategic Consulting Group and a leading strategic, marketing and project management consultant of international repute.

Among the executive positions he has held are: President & CEO of the Emami groups of companies, General Manager at United Breweries, and Project Engineering Manager at Best Foods International.

He has also served on the boards of Rajasthan Instruments & Electronics, North Eastern Development Finance Corporation, Booker India and has worked as a Task Force Member of the Petroleum Group, Government of India.

An author of over 350 research articles and six books, he has served as Professor and Dean of the Business School at Indian Institute of Technology in Delhi and has also been affiliated with the Woxsen School of Business, Assam University, Northwestern Polytechnical University in China, ENPC International Business School in Paris and the University of Maribor, Slovenia.

He is the recipient of many industry awards including the J. S. Pruthi Award for significant contribution in the food industry.

A life member of PMA India, Dr. Baisya is a Fellow of Institute of Engineers (India), Institute of Management Consultants of India and is also the Founder of the Project & Technology Management Foundation (www.ptmfonline.com).

He is the Chairman of Institute of Management Consultants of India Delhi, and a group member and coordinator of Lens Living Labs, a global virtual Innovation Laboratory in Europe.

Contact speaker at: rkbaisya@hotmail.com

Dr. Joel Carboni
President, IPMA-USA

Topic: International Trends in Project Management Competences – the ICB4 model (IPMA Competence Baseline)

A leading figure in sustainable project management, Dr. Carboni is a graduate of Ball State University and holds a Ph.D. in Sustainable Development and Environment. He is the founder of Green Project Management (GPM Global) and is the President of IPMA-USA. With over 18 years’ experience in portfolio, project and program management, Joel has worked in municipal government, Big Five consulting, banking, and higher education.

As an author and an actor in the international sustainable development movement, he is the GPM Global representative to the United Nations Global Compact. Dr. Carboni is also a founding signatory of the UN’s Business for Peace Initiative, signatory to the call to action on Anti-Corruption, Caring for Climate, and UN Principles for Responsible Management Education Initiative (PRME).  Dr. Carboni is a frequent speaker at project management and sustainability symposiums, congresses, and conferences all over the world.


His contact information: www.ipma-usa.org

Dan Kinkead, AIA
Director of Projects, Detroit Future City

Topic: Detroit Future City – Regional Effort or Global Project?


Dan Kinkead is the Director of Projects for the Detroit Future City Implementation Office.  Dan works with a cross-disciplinary team to develop, coordinate, and fulfill innovative and catalytic pilot projects throughout the city.  Prior to forming the Office, Dan was Design Principal at Hamilton Anderson Associates in Detroit, and an urban designer at Skidmore Owings & Merrill, LLP in New York.

Dan is a registered architect whose work has been published in The Plan, Architect, and Architectural Record.  He is also an adjunct graduate design studio instructor at the University of Michigan and a contributing author to Remaking Post-Industrial Cities – Lessons from North America and Europe, published by Carnegie-Mellon University and Routledge.  Dan graduated from Harvard University with a Master of Architecture in Urban Design, and from the University of Kentucky with a Bachelor of Architecture.  Dan lives is in Detroit with his family.

David J. Clements
Director of Cost Management, brose

Topic: Global Project Management Career and Competences – How Brose is successfully mastering this Challenge

Joining Brose in 1990, David has held various positions in the engineering arena, becoming Engineering Director in 2001. As Director of Cost Management, he is utilizing Project Management strategies to achieve ongoing excellence. In addition, he is a committee member representing the North American region for advancement of Project Management within Brose.

Through the years, he has assisted Brose in becoming the preferred Mechatronic supplier in its field, recognized for technical expertise and excellence in Project Management.

Graduating from Loughborough University with a degree in Design and Technology, David also holds a Master’s degree in Management from Walsh College.

Contact speaker at: David.Clements@brose.com

Bruno Welsch
CEO & President, Dürr Systems Inc. 

Topic: How to Manage Global Context Within the Program Management Team: The CEO’s View


A graduate in automation and computer sciences, Bruno has spent more than two decades in the automotive business, mainly in plant engineering and manufacturing systems. Experienced in software design and R&D for manufacturing systems, he has managed many multimillion dollar projects.

Over more than a decade, Bruno has successfully restructured several business centers to profitability and stability, taking full responsibility for P&L.

His extensive background includes extended stays in Europe, South Korea, Malaysia, Mexico and the USA, resulting in cultural adjustments and adaptation to local market conditions for sales, design, manufacturing, installation and commissioning. He is tri-lingual.

Bruno is skilled in globalizing processes and procedures in a corporate environment, team building and leadership training for global enterprises.

Contact Speaker on LinkedIn

Dr. Gerhard Roth
CEO Roth GmbH

Topic: Stress and Burn Out in a Global Project World: Mechanisms, Indicators and Management Strategies – a Neuroscience Perspective (live video conference)


Dr. Roth studied Philosophy, German linguistics and Music in Münster (Germany) and Rome (Italy) and received his PhD. in Philosophy.  He received his second PhD. in Zoology after studying Biology in Münster and Berkeley, California.

Dr. Roth studied Philosophy, German linguistics and Music in Münster (Germany) and Rome (Italy) and received his PhD. in Philosophy.  He received his second PhD. in Zoology after studying Biology in Münster and Berkeley, California.

Dr. Roth is Professor of Neurobiology (Chair of Behavioral Physiology and Developmental Neurobiology) and was Director of the Institute of Brain Research at the University of Bremen for two decades.  In addition, he was Director at the Hanse Institute for Advanced Studies in Delmenhorst, Germany.

For eight years he served as the President of German National Academic Foundation, and has published 13 books and over 200 scientific articles. .

Since 2008, Roth has been CEO of Roth GmbH – Applied Neuroscience in Bremen. The objective at the Roth GmbH is to give businesses a new perspective; transferring the latest scientific insights in the field of neuroscience and psychology to the business world. Using are an interdisciplinary team of neurobiologists, psychologists, economists and engineers, the organization develops innovative solutions for business challenges.

Kurt Meador
Director CMS/PMO Hella Electronics

Topic: Mastering Several Cultures and Nations in a Global Project Portfolio: The Hella Experience in harmonizing Intercultural Aspects and Project Needs

Currently the Director of CMS and PMO at Hella in Michigan, Kurt Meador has twenty-five years Engineering Design/ Development, Project Management & Systems Management experience with HEC and parent Company HKG. engaging in the design and manufacture of high volume Automotive Electronic and Electro-Mechanical products. He also has nine years-prior experience as an Electronic Product Development Engineer, responsible for the design and release to production of Electronic Control Modules for Automotive OEM Suppliers. Prior to his current position, he was the Director of Engineering at Hella.

In his current role, Kurt Meador is also responsible for the PMO for NSA and has vast experiences in harmonizing and managing intercultural project teams, ensuring that global offices work together in the most effective manner.

Rich Frost, Ph.D.
Global Director of Application Development Factories, GM

Topic: Globalization of IT Projects – A real case GM example

Dr. Richard Frost, Ph.D., is a senior IT executive focused on building and leading high performance and innovation driven organizations. Rich is a director at General Motors, where he is focused on driving innovation and optimizing the value of investments in technology.  Within GM, he has spearheaded many initiatives to quickly deliver innovative solutions and streamline systems development. These include agile development, streamlined development processes, and requirements visualization.  Rich was the senior advisor to the Software Engineering Institute for the creation of the CMMI for Acquisition (CMMI-ACQ), a collaborative effort of GM, the U.S. Department of Defense, NASA, and other industry leaders on the best practices for systems acquisition.

Previous to GM, Rich was an information technology executive at Volkswagen of America, where he led systems development, eBusiness, and CRM technologies.  In these roles, he partnered with business leaders to bring innovation, rapid systems delivery and cost reduction to the enterprise.

Throughout his career, Rich has created high performance technology organizations and integrated business process and organizational change into rapid systems delivery.  His background includes executive leadership and consulting in a wide range of industries including manufacturing, logistics, finance, and telecommunications.

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