Keynote Speakers

Visionary Keynote Speakers


Dean Leffingwell
Creator of SAFe, Co-founder Scaled Agile, Inc.

Recognized as one of the world’s foremost authorities on Lean-Agile best practices, Dean Leffingwell is an author, entrepreneur, and software development methodologist.

His best-selling books, Scaling Software Agility, Agile Software Requirements, and SAFe® Distilled, form much of the basis of modern thinking on Lean-Agile practices and principles. Founder of several successful startups, including Requisite, Inc. (acquired by Rational), Mr. Leffingwell also served as Chief Methodologist to Rally Software, and prior to that, as Sr. Vice President at Rational Software (now part of IBM). He serves as Chief Methodologist to Scaled Agile, Inc., which he co-founded in 2011.


Jade Simmons
Concert pianist, best-selling author of Audacious Prayers for World Changers

Jade Simmons spent the first few years of her career performing as a classical concert pianist. Following an artistic epiphany, she pivoted from playing the piano to impress audiences, to using the piano as the vehicle by which to provide the inspiration, information and entertainment that profoundly moves them instead.

No stranger to pushing boundaries to see bold results, this concert pianist turned world changer is brought in by the likes of corporations like Mass Mutual, Royal Bank of Canada, Raytheon, the Hershey Company, Pfizer, and Nationwide to redefine purpose, inspire seismic shifts in mindset and activate audiences to go out and instantly start living more consequential lives of impact.

She’s played the White House and the US Supreme Court and her genre-bending concert adventures that span Rachmaninoff to Rap attract diverse audiences of all ages and backgrounds. For her work on and away from the stage, Essence magazine featured Jade alongside former First Lady Michelle Obama as a part of their Style & Substance List. As one of the rare classical artists invited to perform at the taste-making South by Southwest Festival, her show was ultimately branded one of the “Best of SXSW 2014.”


Dr. Mik Kersten
CEO of Tasktop, best-selling author of Project to Product

Mik Kersten started his career as a Research Scientist at Xerox PARC where he created the first aspect-oriented development environment. He then pioneered the integration of software development tools as part of his Computer Science PhD at the University of British Columbia. Founding Tasktop out of that research, Mik has written over one million lines of open-source code that are still in use today, and he has brought seven successful open-source and commercial products to market.

Mik’s experiences working with some of the largest digital transformations in the world has led him to identify the critical disconnect between business leaders and technologists. Since then, as CEO of Tasktop, Mik has been working on creating new tools and a new framework for connecting software value stream networks and enabling the shift from project to product.


Dr. Tendayi Viki
Award-winning author, corporate innovation expert

As Associate Partner at Strategyzer, Tendayi Viki helps large organizations innovate for the future while managing their core business. He has given keynotes, run workshops and worked as a consultant for several large organizations including Rabobank, American Express, Standard Bank, Unilever, Airbus, Pearson, Lufthansa-Airplus, The British Museum, Copenhagen Fintech and The Royal Academy of Engineers.

Tendayi co-designed Pearson’s Product Lifecycle which is an innovation framework that won the Best Innovation Program 2015 at the Corporate Entrepreneur Awards in New York. He has been shortlisted for the Thinkers50 Innovation Award and was named on the Thinkers50 2018 Radar List for emerging management thinkers to watch.

Tendayi has written three books based on his research and consulting experience, Pirates In The Navy, The Corporate Startup, and The Lean Product Lifecycle. The Corporate Startup was awarded the 2018 CMI Management Book Of The Year In Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Tendayi holds a PhD in Psychology and an MBA.