In Case You Missed It: Digital Enterprise CIO and Data Virtual Assembly Recap

  • By Elizabeth Radziul
  • in ,
  • on February 17, 2021

Contributed by Katie Perry and Elizabeth Radziul

Our 2021 Assemblies are officially underway! We kicked off the year with the Digital Enterprise CIO and Data Transformation Virtual Assembly, and it was a huge success.

In case you missed it…

Engaging Keynotes from Top Thought Leaders and Executives

suzette kent

We’ve been looking forward to the Keynote from Suzette Kent, Former Federal CIO for the US Government, and she did not disappoint! We heard about Suzette’s transition from the private sector into the Federal Government, and the task of preparing Federal Agencies for the adoption of modern technology and beginning the process of digital transformation. Her time in the private and public sector is nothing short of impressive, and she was kind enough to share some tips for other data and technology leaders looking to change their organizations for the better. Suzette outlined 3 imperatives that are critical to the future of successful organizations: Digital, Data, and People, both inside and outside of our organizations. Want more from Suzette Kent? The Millennium Alliance’s Co-Founder, Alex Sobol sat down for an exclusive interview with Suzette Kent for an episode of #MillenniumLive. Listen here!

millennium alliance keynote panel

We kicked off day two with an interactive, high-level discussion on technology, predictive analytics, and more. The panel was moderated by Sunil Mithas, Professor and World Class Scholar, University of South Florida, and panelists included Isha Bhatt, Chief Data Officer, VOLVO; Pete Gibson, Chief Information Officer, Friendly’s; Eileen Mahoney, EVP, CIO, PVH; and Eileen Vidrine, Chief Data Officer, Department of the Air Force. Coming from an array of industries and organizations, the panelists’ experiences, challenges, and insights varied, but they still found some common ground with their analytics journeys. Shared challenges included dealing with large datasets from “legacy” companies, creating a “data culture”, instilling trust in AI and data insights, and finding the right talent to grow analytics capabilities.

Interactive Workshops with Industry Experts

On day one of the Assembly, Harry Moseley, Global CIO at Zoom, led a discussion on what’s to come in the Post-Covid era. In an unpredictable world,harry mosely zoom Harry advises that we can rely on three things: talent, transformation, and trust. With these things in mind, the possibilities are endless. As for the logistics of it all, the hybrid workplace is the future. Companies will continue to downsize their corporate headquarters in favor of more WFH opportunities and smaller satellite offices to allow for more productivity, access to more diverse talent, and overall flexibility.

us navyNext up, Patrick O’Connell, Chief Digital Transformation Officer for the US Navy, addressed the topic of improving digital transformation probabilities. He warned against the “7 deadly sins” that prevent transformation: leadership, not owning; “shoestring”, scattergun and/or unstable budget; no stable, full time and “all star” core team; no formal specific vision and strategy; lack of urgency; technology first; and “big bang” approach. Are you guilty of any of these sins? Avoiding them moving forward can dramatically improve your digital transformation efforts.

Anurag Harsh, Group Chief Data Officer at LafargeHolcim, closed out day one with a presentation on democratizing data & analytics. Anurag explained that data and analytics can offer 5 broad benefits to your employees: foresight, assistance, expertise, explanation, and simulation. He also notes that investing in employee training and using AI for projects that create change at scale rather than focusing on profit is essential to growth. 

On the second day of the Assembly, Gahl Berkooz, Vice President, Data Monetization and Venture Acceleration, ZF Group, led an engaging workshop on data monetization. How do you turn data into cash in the face of the many obstacles that present themselves? Create a digital gateway early on, start data monetization in the product development stage, and “act like a startup” when pursuing new data ventures.

Our next workshop was led by Jessica Lachs, Vice President, Analytics & Data Science, DoorDash. Her biggest piece of advice is to involve analytics in thejessica lachs doordash decision making process and quantify the impact of data to prove its value. Along the lines of a common theme at this assembly, Jessica emphasized the importance of maintaining talent, and suggested integrating data scientists into strategic business decisions.

Wrapping up our first Assembly of the year was Santosh Kudva, Chief Data Officer, GE | General Electric. He led the discussion on self-service analytics and its role in accelerating business outcomes. He stressed that organizations must create an ecosystem where data is readily available, usable, reliable, and shareable. 

What’s New From Our Solution Providers?


As the labor economy shifts to a freelancer/gig economy, the developer deficit continues to increase. Gigster looks to maximize talent without creating technical debt by creating teams. They do this by taking apart each person’s skill set, then they validate these skills to each individual and create teams. The teams have a broad range of skills to complete deliverables that would not otherwise be possible. Gigster not only maps out not only each individual’s work load, but also tracks engagement, which shows where the individual thrives throughout a project. Having this data can lead to more ideas, more bandwidth and wider skill range.


With work from home not going away in the near future, if ever, and help desk tickets continuing to increase, Espressive has a way to decrease cost by eliminating a percentage of the help desk tickets through automation. Although the technology is automated, Espressive has a comprehensive approach, which has a high deflection rate. Their high deflection rate is contributed to their various omni channel capabilities and an understanding for over 1.7 billion words within the English language. Espressive’s technology is not only for the IT department; it can be used throughout many different departments in a company. 


As retailers move from “bricks to clicks”, businesses move to the cloud, and digital innovation accelerates, technology must adapt to the changing landscape. This is causing a shift from point product to platform decisions, and the platform you use is the key to achieving digital goals. Security plays a key role in securing networks from emerging threats in this work from home environment, which means there must be an integrated approach to branch networking. Fortinet explains ways to continue to innovate securely during these changing times. 


Qlik discussed optimizing your data-to-insights pipeline in 2021. While they know it is not easy, Qlik wants you to re-imagine what is required for a business intelligence. It is a process of understanding what data means, how to identify and automate sensitive information, and form policies that are well documented for the people that are there. Additionally, this paradigm should separate the two different concepts of governance. The data streams should be looked at as their own processes, so they can be repeatable, and separate from the analytics governance. Looking beyond the dashboard, Qlik has created the ability for different people to see different parts of the data. Data scientists, for example, should have access to the raw data, whereas the business executives can see the analytics.  


Coursera is a data-first online course provider platform, and their goal is to use data to drive business transformation. They’re using data to make better, faster decisions, improve revenue growth and improve margins. However, many organizations fail to achieve their desired transformation. The key is to fill the talent and the skill gaps by upskilling and reskilling. Additionally, there will need to be a culture shift to drive and achieve this desired transformation. 

The Winner of The Millennium Mission Prize Goes to…

Jean-Pascal Chauvet!

The Millennium Alliance is proud to launch The Millennium Mission, a new charitable endeavor that gives our attendees the opportunity to give back to those in need simply by participating in the Assembly. The Millennium Alliance is donating $1,000 on behalf of the most engaged attendee to the charity of their choice. Some of the charities we’re donating to this year include, Feeding America, The Miracle Walk, and the U.S. Coronavirus Emergency Response. This Assembly’s winner is Jean-Pascal Chauvet, CTO of Corporate Bank at Deutsche Bank, and his charity of choice is Habitat for Humanity! Congratulations to Jean-Pascal for this award, and we look forward to making the donation in his name.

And our 2020 Data Innovator of the Year Award Goes to…

Craig Brabec!

craig brabec mcdonalds

The Millennium Alliance was proud to present the 2020 Data Innovator of the Year Award to Craig Brabec, Chief Data Analytics Officer at McDonalds. Advisory Board Member Sean Ammirati sat down for a fireside chat with Craig to discuss the innovation that has led McDonald’s through the past year. The big takeaway? Never let a good crisis go to waste. Opportunities for innovation are plentiful when organizations use data to drive decisions. 

You won’t want to miss the next Data and Technology Assembly! Join us on June 15th for our Digital Enterprise CIO, Data, and FSI Transformation Virtual Assembly. Go here to RSVP.

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PUBLISHED BY Elizabeth Radziul

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