Product Chemistry – Making the Connections

May 8, 2017 @ Minnesota History Center, St. Paul, MN

Elevated user demands, heightened technical complexity and the expectation of rapid delivery are pulling product teams in opposite directions. More and more, product leaders are forced to unify these interests in the name of getting something out the door.

During this year’s Product Conference, we’ll explore how product leaders create “product chemistry” by connecting business-based architecture, sensible customer experience and a DevOps pipeline for good. Through these connections, we’ll dig into the changing landscape of product leadership, what’s next for us in these roles, and how product can thrive in this rapidly changing environment.

Early bird registration ends March 31st!

Register here

Share Your Thoughts at ProdConf

NEW THIS YEAR – One speaking track is reserved for you, the attendees. Sign up below to share your ideas, stories, and experiences along this theme. Conference attendees will vote to determine which topics will be shared during the conference.

Email us at with your ideas.

Get to Know this Year’s Speakers!

Dave Mathias

Product and Analytics Strategist at Beyond the Data LLC

Talk- Making Good Products Great with Data and Analytics

  • I am a recovering chemist, turned recovering lawyer, turned product management and analytics strategist. Now with over 10 years of experience in product and analytics space I feel at home and love solving customer problems applying practical approaches.  Excited to be at Product Conf because one of the community events that makes Minnesota great, and in addition to Product Conf I am involved with other great Twin Cities orgs including MinneAnalytics, Minnesota PDMA, ProductCamp Twin Cities, and Ally People Solutions. Catch me online; @DaveMathias; or better find me in person and say hi.


Kelly Robbert

Director of Customer Experience at TCF Bank

Talk- Leading Great Customer Experience

  • Kelly has a strong background in solving business problems and developing strategies aimed at earning customer loyalty. She leads with passion and knowledge to inspire great change in others towards a common goal. Kelly and her family live in Minneapolis. She loves entertaining, playing with her kids and enjoying each day for what it has to offer.









Pat Dawson

Principal & CX Strategist at CongaCX

Talk- Product Chemistry: Connecting with Customers’ Emotions

  • I founded Conga Consulting in 2010, dedicated to CX consulting.  I am a Certified Customer Experience Professional and Six Sigma Black Belt.  I was the SVP at Omnicom’s Rapp Collins marketing agency and am the VP of Marketing Strategy for BI Worldwide.  I have consulted with more than 30 leading brands, including Canon, Toyota, Western Union, Allianz, the National Football League, Verizon, Boston Children ’s Hospital and Lowe’s.  I earned my BA and MSPE at the University of Washington and am an adjunct Professor of Business English at Minneapolis Community & Technical College.


Chris Powers

Engineering Manager at Sprout Social

Talk- Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics

  • Chris Powers has been developing Web applications for the last eleven years, and he loves sharing his passion for building both software and teams with the audiences nationwide. As a Clean Coders author, Chris is currently producing an educational video series entitled “Clean Code in the Browser”. Chris is an engineering manager at Sprout Social and lives in the northern Chicago suburbs with his wife and two children. In his free time he enjoys drumming, tabletop gaming and homebrewing.

Alicia F. Dixon

Senior Product Manager at Hilton Inc.

Talk- We Need to Talk: It’s Not Me, It’s Your Product…Recovering from a Lack of Product Chemistry

  • Alicia Dixon has over a decade of experience building consumer and enterprise technology solutions, which evolved into a specialization in mobile apps.  She enjoys focusing on new product development, product strategy, and market research.  Alicia has held positions at leading companies including Hilton, UPS & Dell.  She is a proud alumnus of Howard University where she earned her Bachelor’s degree.  In addition, she holds an MBA from Baruch College, CUNY and an MS in Marketing from the University of Alabama.




William Beeman

Professor and Chair for the Department of Anthropology​ at the University of Minnesota ​

Talk- Harnessing the Power of Anthropology in Product Design​

  • William O. Beeman is professor and Chair of the Department of Anthropology and Affiliate Faculty Member in the Product Design Program at the University of Minnesota. He has been teaching Business Anthropology, including Design Anthropology, for the past ten years.  He was recently Chair of the Ethnographic Praxis in Industry Conference held at the University of Minnesota last August and September, in which 350 Ph.D. social scientists working in business and industry participated. He will be a keynote speaker at the upcoming American​ Anthropological Association Meetings in Washington, DC, speaking about the importance of Anthropology for the Business Community. He is featured in the April issue of Minnesota Business.


Sean Otto

Vice President of Analytics at Cyient Insights

Talk- Through the Looking Glass: Challenges and Trends in Designing Connected Products that Deliver Outstanding Customer Experiences

  • Sean Otto, PhD, is the VP of Analytics at Cyient Insights.  I jokingly say I’m a psychologist turned engineer with a business degree.  I design connected digital experiences and support advanced analytic tools that meet organizational goals that integrate seamlessly into business practices.  With a solid background in customer experience, organizational behavior and predictive analytics, I helps bridge the needed gap between technology, operations and business.  My primary focus is in completing the “last mile” of connected experiences in the Internet of Things where the most the long term value is realized for businesses.


Kristen Womack

Sr. Product Manager & Web Strategist at Night Sky Web Co

Talk- Logs & Alerts, Not Just for Ops: Techniques to Improve your Product Roadmap

  • I’m a Product Manager / Web & API Consultant and the Co-founder of Hack the Gap. I’ve over ten years of experience in software development and product management, but my degree is in Communications. I’ve been a project manager, product manager, analyst and I do some development on the side; I’ve worked with startups, lifestyle businesses, and corporations. My favorite thing to do is build products and teams. Fun fact about me: I left tech to study sign language interpreting and linguistics only to come back to tech. See more about me online:;; or

Peter Pascale

Vice President of Product at Pearson VUE

Talk- Build a Better Roadmap, and the World Will Beat a Path to Your Door

  • World’s greatest generalist, award-winning creator (aww thanks Mom!), and professional bacon evangelist. Mr. Pascale leads product investment at a company large enough to afford him the chance to have made a few mistakes along the way. He divides his time between helping others learn from those mistakes, checking the internet (still there), trying to invent the ‘next snuggie’, and training for really long bike races on unpaved roads. In his spare time he dreams of having spare time.





Jason Selby

Vice President of Engineering at Leadpages

Talk- Let’s Talk About our Relationship… with Customers

  • Jason Selby is a developer of systems, teams, and individuals. Having lived all roles in the software lifecycle, he thinks holistically about building systems for production and is never satisfied with simply meeting functional requirements. He brings experience from disparate domains (marketing, imaging, banking, and e-commerce) and roles (developer, architect, and leader) to bear on the technical and product challenges facing Leadpages. Jason also enjoys spending time with his wife and two young boys. A builder and maker at heart, he indulges these tendencies through cooking, Legos with his boys, photography, and home improvement projects.




Edward Chenard

Founder of Cyberian Data

Talk- The Team Ecosystem of Data Products

  • Global leader with experience in companies such as 3M, GE, Best Buy, Target and CH Robinson. Built Big Data, Data Science, Digital, Insight & Strategy teams from scratch and led large P&L organizations across Marketing and IT, creating very significant impact to various companies.






Paul A. Pilosi

Vice Prescient of Product Development at WhiteBoard Product Solutions

Talk- Iterative Product Development

  • Paul A. Pilosi is Vice President of WhiteBoard Product Solutions, one of the largest full service Product Development consultancies in the upper Midwest. He holds a degree in Mechanical Engineering Technology with emphasis on Manufacturing from SUNY Farmingdale, Long Island, NY and studied Mechanical Engineering and Architecture at Arizona State University before discovering the field of Industrial Design and where he earned a BSID.  Paul has focused on the consultancy environment his entire career due to the diversity and fast pace. He has worked in for small consultancies such as DesignForm in Arizona and after hearing ”yeah, but it’s a dry heat” moved to Minnesota in 1991 where he helped build Leisure Design, was a principal at Lava Design and currently holds the position of VP at WhiteBoard.  Paul is also an Adjunct professor at St Thomas teaching Advanced Product Development to engineering students in the Masters program.



Anne Steiner- Speaker information coming soon!

Esra Kucukciftci- Speaker information coming soon!

Sarah Chaussee- Speaker information coming soon!



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