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0111 Portland CTO Conference

World Trade Center Two
25 SW Salmon Street
Portland, OR 97204, US (map)

Check out the website for venue details and registration.



Come spend a day with fellow CTOs based in Portland for a single track, one day conference touching on product management, leadership and technology.


8:00 am Check In/Registration

8:45 am Welcome!

Etienne de Bruin, Founder 7CTOs

9:00 – 9:45 am Keynote: Making the Product Engineering Marriage Thrive

Vidya Dinamani, Founder & Partner Product Rebels Heather Samarin, Co-Founder/Principal Product Rebels What makes a great product family work is having the product parents, Product & Engineering, in a great relationship. So, what goes into making this work? This talk explores the root causes of most dysfunctions and provides the product perspective in not just identifying and overcoming, but put you on the path to thriving.

10:00 – 10:30 am Distributed team: Benefits and Challenges

Oleg Pashigorev, CTO Promomash How to assemble team on a small budget, without sacrificing speed or quality? We usually hear 2 type of answers: it’s impossible or go hire dev shop from India and we all know what to expect from it. But sometimes we do hear a story that somebody managed to build a great product with offshore team. How did they do it? In this talk I will share with you what it took to create a successful distributed development team. We will go over benefits and challenges as well as restrictions that we had to put in order to work with people from countries that are at WAR. We will also discuss specifics in the hiring process and practices that help us create the culture we all desperately seek and want.

10:45 – 11:15 am Degeneracy, Code, and Innovation, or: How to Fail By Succeeding

Aaron Longwell, Lead Technical Advisor U.S. Department of State When we write software, we are “encoding” our observations about the present for use in the future. But we don’t know much about the future, and our observations about the present are often incomplete and biased. Every organism on the planet faces this problem, and Evolutionary Biology is the study of how organisms have attempted to solve it. In this talk, we’ll explore how we can take inspiration from the natural world and apply it to software and organizational design.

11:30 am – 12:00 pm Design Thinking and Agile for Family Life

Alex Zub, CTO Handsome Many of us use the Agile methodologies and the Design Thinking approach in design and development activities at work. What if we could apply things that make our work so effective and efficient to family life? This talk will discuss the value of leveraging professional methodologies in our everyday life.

12:00 pm Break for Lunch

1:30 – 3:00 pm Workshop: Building Products that Customers (and your team) Love

Heather Samarin, Co-Founder/Principal Product Rebels Vidya Dinamani, Founder & Partner Product Rebels Building products that customers love is the goal of every product team. In this workshop, we work through three core components that every leader can take back to their teams to sharpen product focus, improve team collaboration, and raise overall engagement. This highly interactive workshop is fun, immediately applicable and will help you develop a better rapport and partnership with your product leader.

3:15 – 3:45 pm

Jerome Bonhomme, CTO American Specialty Health

4:00 – 4:30 pm

Sergey Sundukovskiy, Co-Founder, CTO and Chief Product Officer at Raken, Inc.

4:45 – 5:15 pm Mechanical Confidence

Adam Cuppy, COO ZEAL More often then not “confidence” is taught as a practice of positive self-talk; that confidence is the result of belief and time. While this appears to be true, it isn’t. Confidence can be developed, mechanically. We can be more confident without having to solely believe we’re confident. Confidence, in fact, is the result of engrained habit. This talks looks at how you can develop a process to instill what so many of us wish we had more of.

5:15 pm Closing & Thank you

5:30 pm Break for Cocktails