tia quest forum presents:
ict summit 2020

A series of four online webinars featuring keynote speakers and industry panel discussions on critical topics.

We're disappointed we could not hold this event in person this year; but after the Covid-19 pandemic, it's more important than ever for us to convene and share important information on what's happening around the ICT industry.

Tuesday, October 6

9:00 - 10:30 AM ET:

Communication Service Providers (CSP)
Post Covid-19 Strategy

Moderated by: Ken Koffman, CTO and SVP TIA QuEST Forum

Webinar id:

Tony Roy

Head of Risk, Governance & Sustainability
BT Group Procurement, British Telecom (BT)

Tony Roy (002)

Tony Roy manages supplier Risk assurance, sustainability, and governance within BT Group Procurement. His key areas of focus are ethical & environmental improvements for BT’s suppliers of goods and services, and BT’s Modern Slavery Act due diligence with high-risk suppliers. Tony also manages BT’s award-winning Better Future Supplier Forum, which aims to help suppliers improve their sustainability, CSR, and energy efficiency credentials. He has been with BT for 4 years and has a background in electrical engineering, financial services and big 4 consultancy.

Andy Ray

Director-Network Systems

Andy Ray headshot

Andy is a Director of Network Systems at Verizon and has 25 years of experience in telecommunications.  He started his career in the US Army in 1992 as a mobile switching operator and has worked in multiple roles within Engineering, Operations, Planning, Lean Process Engineering, Design, Data Center and Application Management in Verizon.  He is currently responsible for Field Technician/Operations tools for the internal Verizon employees.  He holds a diploma in wireless networking from the US Army and degree in Management Science and Information Systems from Penn State University.

1:00 - 12:30 PM ET:

Assessing smart buildings:
putting criteria to the test

Moderated by: Marta Sancodi, Smart Buildings Program Director, TIA

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Neil Lakomiak

Building & Life Safety Technologies Director


Neil Lakomiak is UL’s director of business development and innovation for the building and life safety technologies business division. In this role, Neil is responsible for identifying and cultivating ideas for new services for the built environment value chain that help mitigate loss to life and property. He also assists clients in enabling new technologies and innovation in the life safety and security industries. Neil is a professional member of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers (SFPE) and member of the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), the Security Industry Association (SIA), ASIS and Infragard.

Gayla Arrindell

Market Development Director - In-Building Networks
Corning Optical Communications

Arrindell Gayla 400x400

Gayla joined Corning in June 2018 with the acquisition of 3M’s Communication Markets Division, where she spent 20 years in the telecommunications industry, working globally both in carrier and enterprise networks.  As part of the market development team at Corning, Gayla is focused on promoting networks that enable smarter buildings, extending fiber and power to the edge of the network to support both wired and wireless technologies in hotels, hospitals, universities, large venues and more.  Gayla is an active member of the TIA Smart Buildings Working Group and the TIA Smart Buildings Founders Program and is a thought leader in many ways around smart building technologies.

Originally from the islands of Trinidad and Tobago, Gayla now calls Austin, Texas home.

Mark Reynolds

Associate Director Core IT Voice Services
University of New Mexico


Mark Reynolds, Associate Director, University of New Mexico IT department, is involved in the engineering, design, installation and implementation of many voice, data, Cellular security and video deployments, inside and outside plant infrastructure.  Mark has been in Higher Education for 36 years with experience in Telecommunications since 1973 with 46 years in voice, data, security, facilities, RF and Management.

Before joining the University of New Mexico in 2003, Mark served as the operations manager for the voice, video, security system and data networking engineering and design at New Mexico Tech in Socorro, New Mexico for 20 years.  Mark has over 45 years’ total experience in the telecommunications space with 37 of these years in Higher Education.

Wednesday, October 7

9:00 - 10:30 aM ET:

State of Software Quality

Moderated by: Ashok Dandekar, TIA QuEST Forum Fellow

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S M Balasubramaniyan (SM Bala) (Keynote)

Chairman and Chief Mentor
Digital Core Technologies, Kochi, India

SM Bala

S M Balasubramaniyan (S M Bala) is a graduate of Electronics and Communication Engineering from University of Madras, India and did his Masters in Electrical Engineering from Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, India. He did his management studies in Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore, India.

S M Bala has more than 40 years of industry experience in the Telecom and IT sectors. He started his career in 1979, in the R & D division of ITI Ltd, Bangalore, India and was involved the design, development, manufacture and deployment of Telecom systems for the public and private telecom networks. He moved over to Wipro Technologies, Bangalore in 1995 to set up the offshore development centre for a North American Telecom major. Until his superannuation in 2012, he held senior management roles in Business operations, Competency Development and Knowledge Management, Product and Process Quality Assurance. He was a Master Black Belt of Wipro Ltd in the Six Sigma methodologies that had responsibility to identify and address organisation level business and operational needs.

S M Bala is currently the Chairman and Chief Mentor of Digital Core Technologies, India, a successful young organisation that is into Hi-Tech Embedded Systems product design and manufacturing services for global clients across multiple domains. He mentors individuals and organisations in all aspects of Business and Operational Excellence. He is also a member of the Board of Linkeddots Engineering Solutions, Bangalore, an IoT start-up that provides solutions in Presence Management. He steers a few of professional societies including TIA – Quest Forum India Hub, that have membership from Telecom and IT industries in India and focused on Quality and Business Excellence initiatives.

He was a board member of NABCB under Quality Council of India and QuEST Forum, USA during his tenure in Wipro. He has traveled widely, a keynote speaker in national and international conferences and trains and teaches professionals in the ICT industries and students in academia in India and abroad.

Ralph Stagg

Senior Manager, Cloud and Platforms Architecture and SOE

Ralph Stagg

Ralph Stagg is a leader in the Verizon Network Systems Enterprise Architecture team. He is responsible for Improving Software Delivery Practices through Development and Governance of Standardized Technology Stacks, Coding Standards, Best Practices and Technical Communities of Practice for Verizon’s OSS portfolio. This includes platforms for network engineers to plan, design, build and maintain the infrastructure as well as provision services onto the network.


Prior to joining Verizon, Ralph served as Chief Architect for XO Communications (later acquired by Verizon) and also served in many roles developing OSS capabilities for XO.

Venkatakrishnan Ramaswamy

Group Head, Team:CIO
Wipro Limited

Venkat Ramaswamy

Venkat: 22 years experienced IT Process excellence leader. Currently part of the Team CIO and a large Enterprise transformation program at Wipro. Prior to this he was the Quality head of the Global Communication Business Unit at Wipro. His experience spans across as Software engineering tools group head, Quality consulting practice head, and as a SEPG key member in facilitation of CMMI, ISO, TL 9000 practices and compliance at Wipro Ltd. He has led Enterprise wide initiatives / projects as a certified Proposal assessor, Six Sigma Blackbelt and Kaizen event facilitator.

He has been a pioneer  in facilitating TL 9000  certification some 19 years back at Wipro. He is an active member of the TIA QuEST Forum India Hub, leading initiatives in keeping up TL 9000 with industry focused changes  including the new Software excellence Touchstone guideline document.

Aakriti Dharmani

Quality Management Professional / Data Science Enthusiast
Cisco Systems

Aakriti-Sep-2020-2 (002)

I, Aakriti Dharmani, am a Quality management professional and a Data Science enthusiast. In my professional journey am currently focused on managing the Quality Management Systems program at Cisco, with a deep focus on Engineering as a function. Across my career, in last 19 years, there have been 3 key focus areas i.e. Engineering programs/Engineering management, Quality Systems management and most recently Data Science and Business Analytics. Innovation is a strength area and I owe it to my curious mind. A strong believer in the power of positive thinking and the circle of life (what goes around, comes around) I spend some effort every year on social activities, with a specific focus on education. Education I believe, is a key enabler towards a better country and a better world.

2:30 - 4:00 PM ET:

5G Security, Supply Chain, and Zero Trust Architectures

Moderated by: Dave Sanicola, President - The DESARA Group

Webinar id:

Charles Clancy (Keynote)

Senior Vice President and General Manager


Dr. Charles Clancy is MITRE’s Chief Futurist, and leads the company’s R&D technology, and innovation organization, MITRE Labs. He previously led delivery of MITRE’s support to the intelligence community and federal law enforcement. Prior to joining MITRE in 2019, Clancy was the Bradley Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Virginia Tech and led the Hume Center for National Security and Technology. He started his career at the National Security Agency, leading wireless R&D Programs. Clancy has led the development of international security standards for the IEEE, IETF, and Wireless Innovation Forum. He has published over 250 books, academic papers, and patents related to telecommunications.

Dave Sanicola

The desara group


As President of The DESARA Group, Dave Sanicola is responsible for major client engagements, business development and strategy, and large project oversight. He leads a team of DESARA’s Consultants who help clients achieve quantifiable bottom-line results by applying a proven methodology for rapid business process improvement.

As well as being responsible for the strategic direction for The DESARA Group itself, Dave manages the telecommunications sector for DESARA’s consulting business, personally handling a portfolio of top accounts whose complex, multi-site management systems require project teams with diverse technical specialties.

Carlos Solari

Founder and member of the management team


Founder and member of the management team for a 5G security startup called SecureG as the Digital Trust Broker bringing to market the needed Public Key Infrastructure for 5G.

Career: Executive in IT and cybersecurity with 40 years of experience: 23 years US Federal Government (US Army Officer / FBI Senior Executive / White House CIO). Leader in IT and Information Security for both the client side (end-user) and the provider side of the market (cyber services and products). Worked for Fortune 100 companies (CSC and Alcatel-Lucent) and smaller in the mid-market and startups including industrial IT cybersecurity. Carlos’ particular expertise is the space between the CIO, the CISO and the Process Owner as it relates to cybersecurity. Compliance to privacy regulations is an example, one that requires the collaboration between various teams: business process owner, IT, security, legal and partner relationships. Recognized expert speaker at conferences / webinars and published author (Security in a Web 2.0+ World from Wiley in 2009). Education: BAS, Biology from Washington and Lee University, MS in Systems Technologies, The Naval Postgraduate School

Scott Rose

Computer scientist
national institute for standards and technology (NIST)


Scott Rose works as a computer scientist at the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST).  Scott works on Internet infrastructure protection research and Internet protocol research. Scott is the editor of several IETF specifications and the author of several NIST Special Publications on secure Internet protocols.  His current work is in bringing zero trust security understanding to the US Government. Scott received his BA in Computer Science from The College of Wooster and his MS from University of Maryland, Baltimore County.

Fun fact: In college, Scott played on a rugby team whose captain was Duncan Jones (Hollywood director of “Moon”).

Junaid Islam

Director of Public Sector Solutions

Junaid Islam

Junaid Islam has 30 years of experience in secure communications. His protocols, algorithms and architectures have been incorporated into a broad range of commercial and national security systems. In the 90s he developed the first implementation of Multi-Level Precedence and Preemption (MLPP) for US Department of Defense C2 applications using Frame Relay at StrataCom. At Cisco Junaid contributed to the priority queuing and buffer management for MPLS routing. Junaid next developed the first working Mobile IPv6 client to enable fast hand-off as well as IPv6 address scrambling for high side networks for the DoD’s Netcentric Warfare program. Most recently Junaid developed the first network-based Zero Trust Architecture using Software Defined Perimeter (SDP) in collaboration with the US Intelligence Community.

Junaid is well known in the networking community. Junaid was recently appointed to the National Spectrum Consortium (NSC) to lead their 5G security activities on topics such as Zero Trust, Network Slicing and Quantum Safe Encryption. Junaid is also Research Fellow of the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) and Co-Chair of the SDP Zero Trust Workgroup.

Marina Thottan

Vice President
NOKIA Bell Labs


Marina Thottan leads the End-to-End Network Security and Service Automation (ENSA) Research in Nokia Bell Labs. She joined Bell Labs Research in 1999, and has contributed to a wide variety of projects, including Content Distribution, Routing protocols, Data over Optical networks, High Speed Router Design, Network Management and Anomaly Detection. Most recently she has been leading work on Network Orchestration, Network Slicing, and 5G Security. She is a Bell Labs Fellow and an IEEE Fellow.

Marina received a Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Rensselaer in 2000. She has published over 60 papers in scientific journals, book chapters and conferences and holds several patents. She is co-author of the book “Communication Networks for Smart Grids: Making Smart Grids Real” and has also Co-edited a book on “Algorithms for Next Generation Networks”.