Tech It Out

Tech It Out – Level Up

Sept. 21, 2021 from 1 – 3 p.m. Eastern

Sponsored by: Comcast

Join WICT Southeast and Comcast as we explore how to “level up” in the Tech space. This two part event will explore new technologies, how to make them work for you and provide tools and resources to develop and enhance your tech-savvy. 

During this two-part event, we will explore:

Session 1 – Enhanced Connectivity: Fact or Fiction
Discuss the truth behind 5G, The Cloud and Cryptocurrency; what they do and how it can work for the consumer.

  • Hugo Ramos, Chief Regional Technologist CommScope- 5G;
  • Bianca Lankford, Senior Director-Global Cloud Engineering, Discovery, Inc.-The Cloud;
  • Rhonda S. Turner-  Crypto enthusiast and Technology futurist, IT Professional, PNC Bank

Moderator for Session 1: Mallory Summers, Sr. Director of Programming WICT SE

Session 2 – Strategic Thinking in Tech: Defined and Explored
A presentation exploring strategic thinking as a skill set, the benefits of strengthening this competency, and how it can be attributed to the Tech space.

  • Brenda Laboy – VP, Construction and Engineering – Comcast
  • Rochelle Stewart, Sr Director HR – Comcast
  • Allison Charney – Manager  HR – Comcast 
  • Trish Crane – Senior Manager, Retail Stores
  • Nikesha Ortiz – Supervisor, Installation and Service

Moderator for Session 2: Tammina Hart, Director of Partnerships  WICT SE

Sr. Director of Programming
Mallory Summers
PWC, Inc.

Moderator, Session 1 – Enhanced Connectivity: Fact or Fiction: Discuss the truth behind 5G, The Cloud, and Cryptocurrency; what they do, and how it can work for the consumer
Director of Partnerships
Tammina Hart

Moderator, Session 2- Strategic Thinking in Tech: Defined and Explored – A presentation exploring strategic thinking as a skill set, the benefits of strengthening this competency, and how it can be attributed to the Tech space:

Bianca Lankford
Senior Director-Global Cloud Engineering

Bianca serves as the Senior Director of Global Cloud Engineering at Discovery Inc,  and is responsible for technical strategy, roadmap and solution architecture initiatives.  Bianca’s primary focus is leveraging the power of cloud and its agility to support direct-to-consumer initiatives and overall delivery of content.  Through a deep passion for technology, Bianca has spent the last decade focused on software and product development leveraging multi cloud strategies and bringing the best content to international audiences. 
Bianca  lives in Knoxville, TN.  When not working, Bianca enjoys spending time with her husband and young children, traveling, cooking and volunteering in her community

Trish Crane is the Senior Market Manager of Xfinity Retail Stores in Nashville and has been with Comcast for six years. She has a background in sales leadership  as well as time spent working in the Customer Experience department in the Mountain West Region and joined the Big South in December of 2020 in her current role. She has a leadership role in the Out ERG, partnering with others on professional development for the group, as well as works on the region’s elevations committee. Trish enjoys reading, watching sports, seeing movies, cooking, and listening to podcasts in her free time.

Brenda Laboy – Regional Vice President, Construction & Engineering, Comcast – Big South
Brenda Laboy is RVP, Construction & Engineering for Comcast’s fastest growing region, the Big South, spanning 8 southeastern states. In this role, she manages Construction, Engineering, and Maintenance for commercial and residential outside plant networks.
Prior to Comcast, Brenda managed Wireless and Wireline Engineering and Implementation for AT&T in Southern California inclusive of 5G, Small Cell, New Site Builds, as well as Fiber deployments. While at AT&T, she led the 3,000-person West Construction and Engineering team to deliver 1.5M residential fiber living units towards an FCC Commitment. Over her sixteen years at AT&T, she managed roles with progressive leadership responsibility in the Network organization.
Brenda completed her MBA at University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business and a BA in Psychology from Stanford University. She recently relocated to Atlanta with her husband, JD, and 2 children, Paloma and Mateo. She enjoys outdoor activities with her family and exploring the southeastern states.

Alli Charney HR Manager, Big South Region
Alli Charney is an HR Manager, partnering with Field Operations teams in the Central Area which includes Greater Atlanta, GA. In addition, Alli participates and leads multiple workstreams within the region that focus on talent development, data analytics, and process improvement. She joined Comcast in 2019 as an HR Generalist supporting Field Operations and regionwide strategic initiatives. Alli is a member of the Women’s Network, myAbilities, BEN and Asian Pacific Americans ERGs. She is also a member of the WICT Southeast chapter. Before Comcast, she served as HR support in the Public Mental Health field and has more than 15 years of leadership and training experience.
Alli received her bachelor’s degree from Penn State in Labor and Employee Relations. She is currently pursuing an MBA at the University of Phoenix. She also loves International HR. Alli and her family live in Tucker, GA with their 2 cats and 1 dog, and she loves delicious vegan food!

Chel Stewart
Sr. HR Director, Big South Region

Chel Stewart leads HR Field Operations and Talent Management for the Big South Region. She and her team partner with the business to create an exceptional employee experience for 3000 employees. Big South Region is part of the Central Division and is the largest region in Comcast, covers nine states and cares for 4500 employees. Chel rejoined Comcast October 2018 and held leadership positions within the cable industry and several business units within Comcast for ten years. She was an Executive HR Director for National Call Center Operations; HR Region Lead in UT/AZ; Employee Engagement Director in OR and HR Director in MN/KS. Chel also held HR roles at the University of Minnesota, Abbott Northwestern Hospital and the Pillsbury Company. Her master’s degree is in human resources & industrial relations from the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota and bachelor’s degree is in organizational administration from Northwestern College in St. Paul, MN. Chel has her PHR, SHRM-CP, is accredited as an Insights Client Practitioner and certified in Prosci Change Management as practitioner and trainer. She has held various chapter leadership positions at Women in Cable & Telecommunications and is a current member of Atlanta SHRM, Atlanta NAMIC and the Southeast chapter of WICT. Chel, her husband, and dog live in Alpharetta and enjoy hiking, eating at Atlanta’s restaurants, and paddle boarding. They have one adult daughter and two adorable granddaughters.

Nikesha “Kesha” Ortiz
Technical Operations Supervisor — Comcast

Nikesha Ortiz has been with Comcast since July of 2009. She began her career in the Florida region, and just recently supports the Atlanta market within the Big South. With her 12 years’ experience at Comcast, Nikesha has become a subject matter expert for the Technical Operations department, with expertise ranging from residential, Xfinity Home, and advanced commercial products. Currently Nikesha holds the role of managing a commercial team in Marietta, supporting Cobb County and the surrounding area, as well as maintaining services and projects within the Battery, home of the Braves Stadium in Atlanta. Nikesha and her wife have an 18-year-old son named Ariel, and a daughter named Mia, who will soon be 2 years old.  They love to visit Florida where their family resides, going to the beach, fishing, and enjoying any outdoor activities together.

Hugo Amaral Ramos
Chief Regional Technologist — CommScope 

Hugo Amaral Ramos is the Chief Regional Technologist (CRT) at CommScope.
Extremely focus driven professional responsible for evangelizing CommScope’s vision for technology aligning its global innovation with local service providers’ needs. In collaboration with CommScope customers, Ramos develops technology strategies that influence the future of the region and advance CommScope’s regional thought leadership and technical expertise in wireless technologies, network evolution, cable, telco and wireless systems with a great ability to translate complex and diverse technologies to simple strategy concepts.
Ramos has over 23 years of experience in the telecommunication industry. He joined ARRIS/CommScope from NET, the largest cable service provider in Latin America, where he served as Senior Technology Manager for its Innovation Framework team. In this role, he managed new technology and solution deployments to the company’s millions of subscribers.
Ramos has spoken on various industry topics at several conferences including NCTA, SCTE, Futurecom, Jornadas, Fiber Broadband Forum and ABTA.
He holds an Electrical & Telecommunications Engineering degree from Universidade Federal do Espirito Santo and an MBA from Instituto Brasileiro de Mercado de Capitais.