Smarter Cities Day 3: Smarter Cities Challenge Houston gets excellent press coverage

After the press conference yesterday I was happy to see the press convey why IBM is here.

KUHF (Houston Public Radio/NPR) – IBM to Provide Free Help for Houston

Examiner: Mayor Parker Launches Houston’s IBM Smarter Cities Challenge

Houston Business Journal : Houston to launch IBM Smarter Cities Challenge grant project

Wednesday is another day of discovery.  We are beginning to sink our teeth into the the challenge here in Houston.  I sunk my tooth in so hard I lost a filling and had to go to the dentist.

After our discussions with many of the stakeholders, including the mayor, I am getting a better sense as to why the Smarter Cities Challenge team wanted someone with both marketing and analytics skills.  Within the discovery we have heard about challenges around: “driving awareness”, “detecting patterns”, “need insight to be able to drive the train”.    These types of statements will help the team develop our recommendations.  What I find interesting, though not surprising, is that many of the challenges Houston faces are the same that many companies face on a day to day basis.

We are getting to the root of many of the issues and I am confident the team will come up with some excellent recommendations which will resonate at all levels of the organization.  It is the team that gives me the confidence.  Though I have been with them for only 3 days, it is clear to me why they have been selected to participate in this challenge.

Here is the team:

Beth Tracy serves as IBM Corporate Citizenship & Corporate Affairs Manager for Texas and Oklahoma.  She actively facilitates IBM’s commitment to demonstrate its principle goal of being a great community partner by improving the society in which it functions.  She supports local and state community programs and provides extensive internal and external education and awareness of these initiatives.  She continually strives to effectively build relationships and create solutions that leverage IBM resources, attract appropriate media attention and bring about desired and meaningful results.  Beth integrates IBM business and policy interests with social and public policy issues, while being responsible to local needs, developing strong, quality relationships with key decision makers in their communities, existing IBM clients, elected and appointed government officials and to seed future IBM clients.  Beth diligently works to promote IBM’s innovative programs and to expand educational programs and services throughout Texas and Oklahoma.

Prior to more than twelve years at IBM, Beth worked for the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented; Universal Studios Florida marketing, sales, and promotions department, and Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Inc. publishing company.

Beth served on the Austin Chapter Executive Women International Board as 2007-2009 President; Make-A-Wish Foundation Outreach and Advancement Board, 2007-2008; United Way Capital Area’s Hands on Central Texas Advisory Board, 2004-2006. She currently serves as Vice Chair, Success by 6 Leadership Council, 2010-2011 and was recently named Chair for 2012-2013; Fox 7 Advisory Board, 2006-2011; Texas CASA Corporate Council, 2008-2011; United Way Capital Area Community Impact Cabinet Board, 2008-2011; University of Texas at Austin Scholars Council, 2011.  Beth is currently appointed to Leadership Texas Class 2012.

In 2011, Beth was presented with a Proclamation from Texas CASA as Outstanding Donor and for her longtime dedication to the Texas CASA mission; Mayor’s Appreciation Award in support of Mayor’s Leadership Forum presented by Mayor Annise Parker, Houston, TX; “Most Helpful Hand” Award from Austin Free-Net.  Beth was named 2007 Outstanding Community Affairs Executive of the Year by the Association of Fundraising Professionals.  In September, 2006, she received the President’s Award as “Representative of the Year” from Executive Women International and was nominated IBM Austin Women’s Exchange “Woman of the Year” in 2005.

Kelly Tinsley: 

Soon to mark her 16th year with IBM, Kelly has demonstrated expertise in providing lifecycle engagement management, program/project management of custom and package (COTS) software implementations as evidenced by the successful deployment of two Statewide and three Local complex system implementations. Ms. Tinsley has proven leadership and delivery execution competency in all aspects of IBM team’s performance, including establishment of PMO and program governance, cost, schedule, quality performance, and global delivery management.

Over the past seven years, Kelly has delivered successful human services solutions using packaged and custom development methodologies in Integrated Eligibility, Unemployment Insurance and Child Welfare. In addition, Kelly served as the Project Manager for IBM’s Corporate Citizenship and Corporate Affairs SafetyNet for Non Profits solution which, to date, has been implemented in four NYC based non-profit organizations since 2010. In her 25 year career history, Kelly’s experience has been in multiple industries: government, automotive, education, finance, and real estate as consultant, project manager and people manager…from Detroit, Michigan to New York City, to Tokyo, Japan. Kelly is active in her Detroit, Michigan community and has served as President of the Vision Fair Foundation, an organization charged with developing programs which address issues of at-risk families and are geared to prevent the generational cycle of poverty, teen pregnancy and educational stagnation.

Kelly has a Master’s Degree in Finance and Asian Studies from the University of Michigan and a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Japanese and French from Georgetown University.

Mike Davies:

Mike Davies currently serves in a management position providing information technology and technical education services for a mid sized organization within IBM Software Group. In this role Mike is responsible for leading teams that manage hardware and software assets, tools improving productivity and access to information, services concentrated in information technology areas and resource management for lab, personal and smart devices. In addition, Mike leads teams responsible for establishing processes, providing governance of best practices, and producing and delivering technical learning to a geographically disbursed organization.

As he begins to establish his new organization, Mike’s teams will also be responsible for organizing and maintaining information and providing resources to a wide variety of consumers in multiple ways that extend beyond traditional classroom learning. Recently beginning work to explore education delivery on mobile devices, packaging information in modular, self directed formats and instituting a series of You Tube videos to help people maintain relevant skills with new software technology.

Mike has been with IBM for nearly 14 years, serving in a variety of technical and leadership positions in customer support and education. Previously Mike worked for Sterling Software and the United States Air Force as a computer and database administrator, serving in multiple countries including Korea, Italy, the Middle East and Latin America. He is a married father of three girls and a boy, a native Texan, born in Houston and raised in East Texas.

Gary Zeien: 

is an IT Architect with nearly 30 years of experience in software development, technology and business consulting, and in technical sales organizations. This broad experience has enabled Gary with the business and technical skills required to design and implement solutions that provide value to his clients. Gary’s business experience includes working in manufacturing environments (warehouse management and warranty solutions), agricultural products environment (Commodity/futures management solution), and the travel industry (business travel booking/management solution).

For the last 10 years he has specialized in solutions in the retail industry. His technical and architectural experience includes designing Web 2.0 enterprise scale component based, services oriented, process driven, event enabled, distributed solutions using JEE architecture and software solutions from IBM, open source, and other solution vendors.

He is also a leader in developing innovative concepts to leverage model based tooling in the design and development of software solutions and to enable social collaboration within large organizations.

Shinichi Nakashio:

Shinichi Nakashio is the service leader for Business Analytics and Optimization (BAO), Distribution / Public / Communication Sector in IBM Global Business Solutions-Japan. Launched in April 2009, IBM’s BAO service line draws on the company’s deep expertise in vertical industries, research, mathematics and information management to help clients improve the speed and quality of business decisions while better understanding the consequences and business outcomes of those decisions.

Mr. Nakashio has over 29 years as an IBMer, 20 of them is consulting experience for business process management / business process re-design with IT planning for system solution implementation. His remarkable competency is bridging business and IT, which realize strategic alignment through strategy, operation (business process), application and IT infrastructure. He also has deep knowledge and experience for Enterprise Architecture (EA) and SOA (Service Oriented Architecture), to build strong thought leadership as a Global CoC (Center of Competency) member in IBM Global.

Mr. Nakashio took up teaching an “Intellectual Creation”, management course for business persons, at Kanazawa Institute of Technology as visiting professor.


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