D.P. Venkatesh


CEO, mPortal, Inc.

D.P. Venkatesh has more than twenty years experience in the telecommunications industry across Wireless, Internet, and Media sectors. His roles have varied from executive management to strategic planning and business development.

As CEO of mPortal, Mr. Venkatesh oversees all aspects of strategy, sales, and marketing for mPortal. Over the past eleven years, he has led the company through its various growth stages.

Prior to founding mPortal, Mr. Venkatesh was with McKinsey & Company in their Hong Kong Office as part of their global Telecommunications Practice and worked with several leading global communication providers as a strategic consultant to their Boards and Management teams.

His work included development of the strategy for an Asian conglomerate to expand its telecom business into China; market rollout plans of a telecom operator in India; global strategy for a large Pan-Asian carrier; and strategy for hardware manufacturer to add a new growth business in software.

Mr. Venkatesh led the Asia Pacific Communications Industry practice for Computer Sciences Corporation (NYSE:CSC) and started CSC’s office in Asia in Hong Kong. Within 2 years, CSC’s Asia base grew rapidly to include 5 countries (Hong Kong, India, Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia).

Earlier in his career, Mr. Venkatesh held several positions in product management and marketing for Convergys (Nasdaq:CVG) in North America while working with communication providers in their BSS/OSS infrastructure needs.

Mr. Venkatesh holds an MS in Industrial Engineering and an MBA both from the University of Cincinnati, as well as a BS in Chemical Engineering from Anna University.


Chris Wegrzyn

Co-founder, BlueLabs

Chris Wegrzyn is a leading practitioner in the application of analytics and big data technology to political campaigns. As a cofounder of BlueLabs, he hopes to bring this new technology to other important causes and challenging problems. From his earliest days with the Obama campaign in 2007, he began formulating a vision for the role of emerging data and analytics technologies in the campaign. As the Director of Data Architecture for the Democratic National Committee (DNC) between 2011 and 2013, he realized that vision. He brought a cutting-edge new analytics technology platform to the DNC and led the Analytics Technology team on the Obama re-election campaign. In little more than a year, his team integrated data from every corner of the campaign into a central repository; built tools to analyze, manipulate, and explore the campaign’s massive database; and developed technology to support the most sophisticated analytics operation ever assembled on a campaign.


Jeanne Holm

Forum Speaker

Data.gov Evangelist, GSA and Chief Knowledge Architect, NASA JPL

As the Evangelist for Data.Gov, Jeanne Holm leads collaboration and builds communities with the public, educators, developers, and international and state governments in using open government data. (Data.gov is a flagship open government initiative for the Obama Administration, managed by GSA.)

Jeanne is the Chief Knowledge Architect at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, driving innovation through social media, virtual worlds, gaming, ontologies, and collaborative systems, including the award-winning NASA public portal (www.nasa.gov). She is also a Fellow of the United Nations International Academy of Astronautics.


Lynn Overmann

Deputy Chief Data Officer, U.S. Department of Commerce

Lynn Overmann serves as the Deputy Chief Data Officer for the U.S. Department of Commerce, where she helps lead efforts to accelerate progress toward opening the most useful data to American businesses and entrepreneurs, spur innovation from our in-house talent, and work with leading-edge experts from the Department’s Data Advisory Council.  Prior to joining the Department of Commerce, Ms. Overmann served as a Senior Advisor to the United States Chief Technology Officer in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), where she led OSTP’s Jobs and Skills Open Data Initiative, working to bring innovation and technology to bridge the skills gap and better match job seekers with available jobs.  Ms. Overmann also worked closely with the Department of Veterans Affairs and leading technology companies to better map and understand Veterans unemployment and advance accelerated learning approaches to provide Veterans with in-demand IT skills and opportunities.

Ms Overmann also led the White House's efforts to use technology to combat human trafficking, working closely with state, local and federal law enforcement agencies to help better focus investigations, more effectively identify victims, and better share information across jurisdictional lines.  Prior to joining OSTP, Ms. Overmann worked as a Policy Specialist in the Office of the Vice President, addressing issues of Violence Against Women. Ms. Overmann previously worked at the U.S. Department of Justice addressing issues of access to justice, increasing legal services for Veterans, and improving indigent defense.  Prior to joining the Administration, Ms. Overmann was a civil rights and criminal defense attorney.   Ms. Overmann holds a J.D. from New York University School of Law and a B.A. from Bryn Mawr University


Gregory Godbout

Executive Director, 18F U.S. General Services Administration

Greg Godbout is Executive Director of 18F, Co-Founder of 18F, a GSA Deputy Associate Administrator, and a 2013 Presidential Innovation Fellow. Greg has a passion for innovating for a more efficient, responsive, and effective government. Greg is an entrepreneur and experienced software architect with an extensive background in improving productivity with technology. As owner of the Arlington Cinema & Drafthouse, a unique entertainment and restaurant concept, Greg has driven innovation within the entertainment industry and built a thriving community theater with national recognition. While balancing the responsibilities of business ownership, Greg has also nurtured his technical skills by working as a consultant for both federal agencies and private organizations. His consulting work includes custom software development, social media solutions, and large enterprise applications. He received a degree in Economics with a concentration in Business from St. Mary’s College of Maryland and is currently enrolled in UVA's Masters in Management of IT program. Greg grew up in Bethesda, MD, and lives in Arlington, VA, with his wife Colleen and daughter Ella.


Maci Peterson

CEO, On Second Thought

Maci Peterson, co­founder and creator of On Second Thought, is an entrepreneur and Millennial­marketing expert based in Washington, D.C.

As a brand manager at Marriott International, Maci led the redevelopment and relaunch of the hospitality company’s first mobile game, Xplor. For this initiative, she managed relationships with other companies including Hertz and Pepsi. She also led innovative digital marketing campaigns and consulted on many of the hotel company’s Gen­Y initiatives. As the marketing strategist for The Root, a leading news, opinion and culture site for African­American influencers, Maci led the company in taking protests from the streets to the tweets with thegroundbreaking #MarchOn Twitter to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington. She also planned numerous events, including the company’s signature The Root 100 Awards Dinner and The Root Inaugural Ball to celebrate the second inauguration of President Barack Obama.

Maci received her Bachelor of Arts degree in public relations and advertising from Chapman University, with related work in journalism and advanced film production. While a student at Spelman College, she studied cultures of the African Diaspora and marketing. She was the founder and editor­in­chief of the former Mwari Magazine, a digital publication that discussed issues ranging from politics and world affairs to fashion, travel, beauty, and mentorship to provide young, black women the necessary tools to become effective leaders of our global society. Additionally, she worked in product placement for 20th Century Fox, contributing to various films, including “27 Dresses,” “Marley & Me,” “Meet Dave,” “Juno” and “The Devil Wears Prada.”

Maci regularly serves as a mentor and leader for several community organizations. She is a founding board member of Michelle in Training and a former board member of New Light Leadership Coalition, Platform H and Carson Scholars Alumni. She is a former member of the National Association of Black Journalists and Greater Washington Fashion Chamber of Commerce, and is an alumna of Alpha Phi Fraternity. In 2010, Maci was honored with the Tuxedo Ball’s Award for Entrepreneurship.


Todd Marks

Round Table Leader:
Mobile Innovations

President and CEO, MindGrub

Todd Marks is the founder of Mindgrub, a Technology Innovation Agency based in Baltimore. Mindgrub is a mobile, social, and web applications consultancy that works with organizations to bring their brand to mobile.  Mindgrub offers creative and technical services on mobile and web platforms leveraging augmented reality and mobile gaming frameworks, along with their location based services product, viaPlace.  Marks leads information architects, user experience specialists, creative interface designers, and top-notch developers to solve business and consumer challenges in rapid information transfer.  Mindgrub has won numerous awards including CRTC’s Tech Company of the Year, two ADDY Awards, a Webby, as well as SmartCEO’s Future 50 and Top 100 Best Run Companies.


Romeo Durscher

Director of Education, DJI, Inc.

Born and raised in Switzerland, Romeo Durscher moved to San Jose, California to work on a NASA space mission. After 13 years working on NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory handling project management, education, public outreach and social media responsibilities, Mr. Durscher has joined DJI, the global leader in unmanned aerial systems (UAS) as Director of Education.


Tim Abdella

GIO, D.C. Office of the Chief Technology Officer

Mr. Abdella is the Geospatial Information Officer for the District of Columbia, Office of the Chief Technology Officer managing GIS, Open Data, Government Transparency, Accountability and data driven performance programs.


Tony Cappaert

Round Table Leader

COO and Co-founder, Contactually

Tony Cappaert is the Co-Founder and COO at Contactually, a SaaS startups that helps professionals automatically manage and regularly follow up with their top contacts.  He was previously a product manager on the Bing adCenter team at Microsoft and an investment analyst for a social VC firm. Tony is an MIT alum and loves hiking, camping, and drinking great beer (his favorite is Pliny the Elder).  He is a mentor at 1776 and an advisor to several local startups.