I thought it was an excellent event and met my expectations. The sessions were informative and outside the box.

Jim Bish, CIO - Hussey-Libertas Copper/Patriarch Partners

We spend so much time with out heads buried in our work. It is energizing to pick my head up, network with my peers in an environment that fosters collaboration and community, and grow as a leader.


It's refreshing to attendee a CIO event that is targeted at networking and enriching the attendees and not just focusing on selling a product or service. The honestly of the panelists made the sessions relatable, no matter what field or background you come from.

Jan Kubiska, Director of Information Technology - Pressley Ridge


CIO Forum

Check-In & Peer-to-Peer Networking Breakfast

Welcome & Introductions

General Session Humanizing the C-Suite

At the Forum, people are at the center of all business. With constant digital bombardment and disruption its becoming even more complex to truly connect and communicate effectively especially in sales and at events.

Have you ever wondered how you could become more relatable? Christine Miles, with Executive Leaders Radio and Premier Connects is breaking out from the traditional conference event model to ensure quality networking by bringing a select few CIOs into the limelight to discover the secret of how to make connections that change conversations and drive business success.

Through a unique story gathering process Christine discovers who executives really are and what drove their success. It helps people understand that executives are real, human, relatable, role models and people.”

Networking Break

General Session Leading the Way for Self-Driving

Pittsburgh has become synonymous with robotics in many ways, and Argo AI is one of the top companies in this space located right in the Strip District. Summer will talk about the history of Argo, the challenges and excitement of the CIO role in a fast-paced artificial intelligence organization, and what is coming next in the field of autonomous vehicles. Buckle up for a video of self-driving cars around Pittsburgh, and hear about the IT and cyber security activities that support this cool technology.

General Session Health, Wellness & Digital: Inside Rite Aid’s Path to the Future

  • Presenter
    Justin Mennen, CIO, Rite Aid
  • Presenter
    Brian Watson, Co-Author, Confessions of a Successful CIO, VP, Enterprise Innovation at Traction Technology Partners
When Justin Mennen took over as CIO of Rite Aid, he was given a clear mission to transform the pharmacy giant’s technology footprint. In this fireside chat with author and CIO advisor Brian Watson, Justin will explain his vision, strategy, and some exciting initiatives underway for Rite Aid’s digital transformation, and he'll offer advice gleaned from this journey and his past experience with successful turnarounds.

General Session The Listening Breakthrough: The 6 Most Powerful Questions you need to Know to uncover the real story

Leaders universally agree that Listening is one of the most, if not the most important skill, needed for workplace success. Yet most people don’t know HOW to listen effectively. Statistically, listening is a communication skill we use 40% of the time in the workplace, and we are given 0 years of training in school to build this skill. For the 2% of people who have sought listening training, it is often not truly effective because training focuses on WHAT to do versus HOW to do it.

The inability to Listen and get the real story leads to delivering technology solutions that the business asks for, rather uncovering the true need. This misalignment is a costly endeavor, as Technology Leaders agree that the cost to rearchitect, is typically more costly than the original implementation. Additionally, IT professionals are known for solving problems by chasing information, rather than uncovering what is below the surface and not articulated by the key stakeholder.

This session will enable you with the 6 most powerful questions you need to know to get the real story and uncover the true business need.

Networking Break

Lunch Table Talk Roundtables

This time is carved out to discuss issues your organization faces with your peers during our lunch session. This is a great opportunity to network and learn from others in your industry.

General Session Security Discussion

  • Presenter
    Matt LaVigna, President & CEO, National Cyber-Forensics and Training Alliance (NCFTA)
  • Presenter
    Kevin Nally, CIO, US Secret Service

Networking Break

General Session Silicon Valley in Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh’s most prominent Venture Capitalist (Joel Adams of Adams Capitol) will facilitate a lively and candid discussion with 3 of Pittsburgh most promising tech startups (Dynamics Inc., Niche, and Roadrunner Recycling). The panel will share the opportunities and challenges they face running and growing businesses which are more commonly based in Silicon Valley vs Pittsburgh and how we (as the leaders of Pittsburgh’s Technology Community) can help promote more of these amazing success stories in our home town!

Networking Break

General Session The Type of Collaboration Required with the CIO and CFO to Move the Enterprise Forward

This session will highlight
-Budgets - operating and capital, lease vs buy, headcount, professional services, staff augmentation
-Project Justification – ROI – Measuring success not just at delivery, but months and years out
-Regulatory and Compliance and Audit remediation
-How are the roles changing? How can each serve each other better?

Closing Keynote Pittsburgh, The City Making CIOs & CISOs (or Top IT Executives)

  • Moderator
    Mark Miko, CIO, Duquesne Light Company
Pittsburgh is no longer just a rust belt manufacturing city but a thriving technology mecca. To meet the need for technology leaders to transform old companies into new technology based companies, deploy technology to grow value and lead innovation in a changing global economic climate, Pittsburgh “grew” a batch of Senior Executive IT leaders.

In this session you will hear from;

-Sanjay Akut, CTO at Erickson Immigration Group
-Bill Fortwanger, CIO at Dollar Bank
-Matt Siconolfi, CTO at Transport Investments, Inc.
-Larry Trenga, CIO at Wesley Family Services
-Joe Walsh, VP & CIO at Gateway Health
-Joe Wynn, CISO at Seiso, LLC

You will learn how this network of Technology Leaders was built and what these leaders feel are the ingredients to a successful technology transformation. They will discuss the competencies and philosophies they used to advance their careers to the top technology and cyber-security positions at leading companies at the same time advancing the technology posture of Pittsburgh.

Executive Exchange

After such an invigorating day of problem solving, connections and non-stop content, let’s “wine” down with some beverages. This is your chance to exchange ideas and really get to know those you briefly met or haven’t had the chance to!

Join us in the networking pavilion for the reception you have stayed all day for.

Admittance by Conference Badge Only.

Mobile App

Our mobile app allows you to view our information like never before! Get engaged with other attendees, view speakers and session details, get involved with group discussions, meet our advisory council and sponsors, and much, much more!

Download on the App Store or Get it on Google Play

How to Download Your Event App

  1. Open the Apple Store or Google Play Store and search for “Premier Connects”
  2. Download the App
  3. Launch the upcoming event in your city

UPMC Events Center at RMU

6001 University Boulevard,, Moon Township, PA 15108
For accommodations, we recommend

DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh Airport

8402 University Blvd, Moon Township, PA 15108
Reservation Rates Good Through December 19, 2019 Single $119.00

Premier Sponsors

Premier would like to extend a special thank you to the 2019 sponsors of this event.