Uncle Bob

Robert C. Martin, colloquially known as “Uncle Bob”,[2] is an American software engineer and instructor. He is best known for being one of the authors of the Agile Manifesto[3][4] and for developing several software design principles. He was also the editor-in-chief of C++ Report magazine and served as the first chairman of the Agile Alliance.

Martin operated the now-defunct company, Object Mentor, which provided instructor-led training courses about extreme programming methodology. He now operates two companies:  Uncle Bob Consulting which provides consulting and training services, and Clean Coder, which provides training videos.


David Giard

David Giard is a former accountant and a former biochemist, who has been developing solutions using Microsoft technologies for nearly 3 decades.  Currently, David helps people build solutions in his role as a Microsoft Senior Software Engineer. David has been very active in the developer community, speaking at numerous major conferences, code camps, and user groups around the world; helping to lead user groups; and helping to organize conferences and other geek events. He is the host and producer of the mildly popular online TV shows Technology and Friends and GCast.  He is the co-author of the Wrox book Real World .NET, C#, and Silverlight. You can read his latest thoughts at DavidGiard.com.  His hobbies include video, photography, sports, and embarrassing his sons.

Robert Boxall

Robert Boxall VP of Technology and Product at Redbox, formerly Director of Cloud Services at Netflix, is a “Hands-On” coding executive with proven experience both in building new products and teams from scratch and rebuilding large organizations around truly agile and rapid development cycles. Robert is currently leading Redbox’s digital transformation to the Cloud.

Josh Long

(@starbuxman): Josh is a Spring Developer Advocate at Pivotal. Josh is a Java Champion, author of 5 books (including O’Reilly’s “Cloud Native Java: Designing Resilient Systems with Spring Boot, Spring Cloud, and Cloud Foundry”) and 3 best-selling video trainings (including “Building Microservices with Spring Boot Livelessons” w/ Phil Webb), and an open-source contributor (Spring Boot, Spring Integration, Spring Cloud, Activiti and Vaadin).


Ruth Yakubu

Ruth Yakubu is a Sr. Cloud Developer Advocate at Microsoft; and also the founder of PoshBeauty.com. Ruth specializes in Java, Cloud, Advanced Analytics, Data Platforms and Artificial Intelligence (AI).

In addition she’s been a tech speaker at several conferences like Microsoft Ignite, Devoxx, JavaWithBest, DevNexus, TechSummit, Grace Hopper and several developer communities. Prior to Microsoft, She has also worked for great companies like UNISYS, ACCENTURE and DIRECTV over the years where she gained a lot of experience with software architectural design and programming. She’s awarded Dzone.com’s Most Valued Blogger.

Derek Ashmore

Derek is a senior technology expert with over 30 years of experience in a wide variety of technologies and industries. Derek is currently a Principal Cloud Architect at Asperitas Consulting. Derek is focusing on microservice architectures, cloud computing, and migrating applications to the cloud. Derek’s approach allows companies to increase speed to market while also increasing application availability. Derek routinely speaks at JavaOne, DevNexus, the Chicago Coders Conference, and many others. Derek’s books include the “The Java EE Architect’s Handbook” and “Microservices for Java EE Architects”.


Grace is a software engineer with years of experience in IoT and high-frequency trading services. Before that, she was in data science and spent her time building machine learning models. Grace graduated from the University of Chicago with a master’s in computer science and bachelors in statistics and in economics.

Mariano Gonzalez

Mariano is a Chicago-based computer geek originally from Mexico. Over the last years, he has been working with big data technologies such as Hadoop, Cassandra and Spark just to mention a few. He has been using the JVM for more than 12 years implementing multiple kinds of applications for different business fields (insurance, banking, trade shows, and recently IoT). He enjoys sharing his knowledge about JVM and its huge ecosystem with the Chicago tech community.

Brett Lindsley

Brett Lindsley is currently a Solutions Architect III at Grainger, where he develops e-commerce
systems for the MRO industry. His previous position was a Senior Manager at Gogo developing aviation
software. The biggest system at Gogo was a big data system for flight data that merged millions of data sensor observations into flight records every day. Previously Brett worked at BuildingWorx on smart building software as an Architect and Data Scientist. As a Data Scientist, Brett developed new algorithms for the modeling and prediction of energy consumption based on time/temperature modeling. Brett’s previous position was with Motorola in the Applied Research Center as a distinguished member of the technical staff. At Motorola, Brett developed advanced products and technology for 28 years. During this time, Brett has produced 24 issued patents and 4 publications in technologies ranging from digital signal processing (now called Data Science!), IC design, video systems and enterprise software. Brett has six certifications – AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate, FAA Fundamentals Of Instruction (FOI), SCJP, SCWCD, SCBCD and SCMA. Brett enjoys system and application development with Java and Spring and presenting at the Java User Group (JUG). Brett has BS/MS degrees from North Dakota State University in Electrical/Computer Engineering.

Joel Vasallo

Joel is currently the Manager of Cloud DevOps at Redbox where he leads the Cloud DevOps team to architect highly available cloud environments, develop infrastructure and development tools, and empower developers through fully automated single click deployment pipelines. He has been using Spinnaker since its initial OSS release, and has experience building complex delivery pipelines for both software and hardware solutions. He is a Pythonista by trade and the cloud is his immutable data center. In his spare time, he is a Google Developer Chicago Organizer running monthly meet ups and a yearly Windy City DevFest conference. When he isn’t working, he loves exploring Sweet Home Chicago!

Ben Goldberg

Ben Goldberg is a staff engineer at SpotHero, where he founded and built out their Data, Platform, and Search teams. He joined SpotHero in August 2017 and has led the direction of backend and ops technologies since that time. Ben works closely with the greater software community as a contributor or maintainer on a number of open-source projects, such as Kubernetes, Airflow, and Helm. He also enjoys teaching, and is a Data Engineering instructor with Udacity. Prior to SpotHero, Ben developed software for airborne computer vision systems and contributed to a natural language generation platform for business reporting.