3rd Annual Big Data Analytics Conference

Coming Soon — 2017 Conference Agenda

Big Data conference brochure

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1.866.678.3933 or 405.744.5208

February 15, 2017
Renaissance Hotel – Tulsa, Oklahoma

Includes experts from BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, BOK Financial Corporation, Google, Infinedi, ONEOK, QuikTrip, SAS, Teradata, and Walmart

Have you heard about big data and wondered what it is all about and how to leverage it for your organization and career? Attend the Big Data Analytics Conference and receive answers to your questions about big data. The Big Data Analytics Conference will explore the management and strategic impact big data can have on a company or organization. This cross-industry conference brings speakers from industries throughout the region and nation to share their experience of maximizing the use of big data. Those attending the conference will learn about leading practices in using analytics in energy, finance, medical service, and retail.

Speakers and participants will explore various issues such as data capture, data management, data analysis and the strategic use of information for decision-making that drives success in business/organizations. This conference is designed for managers and professionals interested in exploring analytics applications and the processes for implementing such initiatives in your organization.

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Sponsorship opportunities are available.
Sponsorship Information

2016 Agenda

Tuesday, February 23, 2016
9:00-9:20 a.m.
Welcome and Introductions

Dr. Ramesh Sharda is the Vice Dean of the Watson Graduate School of Management, Watson/ConocoPhillips Chair and Regents Professor of MSIS in the Spears School of Business at Oklahoma State University. He coauthored “Decision Support and Business Intelligence Systems” and “Business Intelligence: A Managerial Approach.” He serves as the Executive Director of Teradata University Network and received the 2013 INFORMS HG Computing Society Lifetime Service Award.


Dr. Goutam Chakraborty is the Ralph A. and Peggy A. Brenneman Professor in the Department of Marketing in the Spears School of Business at Oklahoma State University. He has consulted extensively on issues related to developing digital business strategy, building and managing customer relationships, product development, and management and creation of e-business models.


Dr. Ramesh Sharda, Vice Dean, Watson Graduate School of Management, Watson/ConocoPhillips Chair and Regents Professor of MSIS, Spears School of Business, OSU

Dr. Goutam Chakraborty, Ralph A. and Peggy A. Brenneman Professor, Department of Marketing, Spears School of Business, OSU

9:20-10:00 a.m. Building an Analytics Ecosystem

Udo Sglavo is the senior director for R&D at SAS Institute. He and his team are in charge of developing industry-leading and award-winning software for data mining, machine learning and large scale automatic forecasting. He helps customers learn how to apply analytics to solve business problems. He also helps to define the specifics of the advanced analytics product portfolio at SAS as well as the integration of analytics into solutions and visualization products.


Smart organizations have been analyzing data for years to increase profits, lower costs, and improve customer experiences. To see real value in your data you need to move beyond basic analytics to optimization, forecasting, machine learning, text analytics, and more. With a wide range of advanced analytics at your disposal, you will reveal optimal and lucrative opportunities, expose risks, deepen customer understanding, and deliver predictive insights. Udo will discuss what it takes to build an ecosystem for analytics and how it will help your company in the future.

Udo Sglavo, Senior Director, Research and Development, SAS, Cary, NC

10:00 a.m. Break
10:15-11:00 a.m. Flirting with Disaster: What We Can Learn from Analytical Failures

Sterling Price
Sterling Price is Senior Director of Customer Analytics for Global Customer Insights and Analytics at Walmart. He leads a team of analysts dedicated to uncovering customer insights that drive business value and influence strategic and tactical decisions for Walmart. He has worked in various areas during his 18 years with Walmart and is a member of the Marketing Analytics and Data Mining advisory board at Oklahoma State University.


Analytics has become pervasive in our society, influencing millions of decisions every year. There are some organizations even making decisions without human intervention through automated systems. The implicit assumption is that all completed analytical projects are accurate and successful, but the reality is that some are not. Bad decisions made because of faulty analytics can be costly, embarrassing, and even dangerous. Sterling will discuss the root causes of these analytical failures and how to minimize the chances of repeating the mistakes of the past.

Sterling Price, Senior Director, Customer Analytics, Walmart, Bentonville, AR

11:00-11:45 a.m. When Data Becomes Knowledge

Sherri Zink is the senior vice president, chief data and engagement officer for BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee. In this role, she has ownership of the data and analytics center of excellence and serves as the catalyst for data exploitation across the enterprise. She is the corporate leader of data insights and champions a culture of data-driven decision making. Sherri has received several awards for her work in the analytic field including CIO Magazine’s Top 100 Most Innovative Use of Analytics.


Medical informatics affects everyone in the healthcare system. That’s why leveraging data to drive business value is a daily occurrence at BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee. When faced with new market challenges around consumer engagement and retention, BCBST turned to data for proactive consultation with its members, providers, and employer groups. BCBST is turning data into actionable information to reduce costs, increase the quality of care, and improve outcomes.

Sherri Zink, Senior Vice President, Chief Data and Engagement Officer, BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, Chattanooga, TN

11:45 a.m. Break
noon-1:30 p.m. Tulsa Business Forum with Ann Compton, former ABC News correspondent

A distinguished and highly respected veteran of the White House press corps, Ann Compton offers a historical perspective of the presidency and the biggest stories of our time, today’s event-making headlines, and the 2016 presidential election.

1:40- 2:20 p.m. Sports Analytics Enters the Golden Age

Dr. Dave Schrader has spent 35 years working for three database vendors, both in advanced software development as well as marketing. Recently retired after 24 years at Teradata where he was director of marketing and strategy, he has spent the past year consulting and attending sports analytics conferences and interviewing coaches and trainers on how they use data. He has a Ph.D. in computer science from Purdue University.


The hottest topic in sports right now is analytics – the ability to make better decisions based on data and insights. Dave will survey the state-of-the-art analytics being used for baseball, basketball, football, hockey, and soccer with examples of what pro teams are doing in the analytics area. He will distinguish between front-office operations (fan engagement, ticket pricing) and the back-office (coaches, trainers, players). He will also discuss how business analytics and sports analytics aren’t that different – skills learned in one are valuable in the other.

Dave Schrader , Retired Director of Marketing and Strategy, Teradata Corp., Los Angeles, CA

2:20 p.m. Break
2:30-3:05 p.m. Google: Analyzing and Using Big Data to Improve your Business and the World

Michael Wooten
Michael Wooten is the data center operations manager for Google in Pryor, Oklahoma. He has worked for Google for almost 10 years, working in engineering and project management and operations management roles.


The world is inundated with data including videos, documents, web content, financial data, etc. The ability to process and make sense of data is critical to solving some of the world’s biggest problems and to manage and optimize businesses. For example, self-driving cars make use of the wealth of available geo and gps data and Google analytics is a free tool that analyzes data about web traffic for your business. Michael will discuss some of the challenges and opportunities that exist when working with and analyzing these big data sets.

Michael Wooten , Data Center Operations Manager, Google, Inc., Pryor, OK

3:05-4:15 p.m. Panel: Using Big Data Analytics

Tom May is the director of application technology at ONEOK, Inc. He has responsibility for business intelligence and analytics, content management, web and mobile development, and data integration and architecture. He has more than 20 years of IT industry experience with much of that time focused on data architecture, data warehousing, business intelligence, and analytics.


Sally Mannix is the chief technology officer and executive vice president of operations and technology division at BOK Financial Corporation. In her role with BOK Financial, Sally and her teams are responsible for production support of over 550 applications, project delivery and implementations, annual technology planning, and overall technology issues resolution on behalf of all business divisions within the banks regional footprint.


Brad Cost is the CEO, president, and owner of Infinedi, LLC. His primary focus is in the development of cutting edge electronic data technology as it relates to the big data analysis of medical and health data. Brad owns various companies including an electronic data interchange consultant firm, an interactive software development firm, an innovative software system and many more. Brad travels across the nation presenting on electronic data interchange and technology and is very active in training and educating providers about big data analytics on a national level.


Bryan Gross is the director of business intelligence at QuikTrip Corporation. During his 14-year tenure with QuikTrip, he has also served as manager of site selection and director of marketing. Over the course of his career, Bryan has specialized in retail simulation models, site selection systems, competitive and spatial interaction models, and retail analytics. He received his bachelor’s degree in ecology from Colorado State University and his M.S. and Ph.D. from New Mexico State University where he specialized in quantitative ecology and statistics.


This panel will discuss how data is being utilized in the energy, finance, medical services, and retail industries and how it is making a difference in their companies. Learn how your company/organization can leverage data to your greatest benefit.
Moderator: Dr. Goutam Chakraborty, Ralph A. and Peggy A. Brenneman Professor, Department of Marketing, OSU, Spears School of Business

Energy: Tom May, Director, Corporate Applications Technical Operations, ONEOK, Inc., Tulsa, OK

Finance: Sally Mannix, Executive Vice President, Chief Technology Officer, BOK Financial Corporation, Tulsa, OK

Medical Services: Brad Cost, President, CEO, owner, Infinedi, Tulsa, OK

Retail: Bryan Gross, Director of Business Intelligence, QuikTrip, Tulsa, OK

4:15 p.m. Conclusion

Thank you to our 2016 Sponsors!

Gold Sponsor

Silver Sponsors

Cancellation Policy:

If a participant would like to cancel her/his registration less than 10 days prior to the conference, you are welcome to send a substitute. All guarantees have been submitted to the hotel, so refunds are not attainable. A refund is available given notification no later than 11 days prior to the conference. If you are transferring your registration to a colleague, please contact the OSU Center for Executive and Professional Development at 1-866-678-3933 or

For more information

For more information, contact the Center for Executive and Professional Development
Toll Free 1-866-678-3933 | Phone 405-744-5208 | Email