Speakers

John Eckman

John has spent the last 16+ years in various agencies working on web site design, strategy, and development, the last 10 with a strong focus on open source. He’s been involved in organizing WordCamp Boston since 2010, and is currently the CEO at 10up.

Matt Mullenweg

Matt Mullenweg is the co-founder of the open-source blogging platform, WordPress, the most popular publishing platform on the web, and the founder of Automattic, the company behind WordPress.com and Jetpack. Additionally, Matt is a principal and founder of Audrey Capital, an investment and research company.

Matt got his start in technology working at CNET Networks as a senior product manager.

He went on to found Global Multimedia Protocols Group, an experimental metamemetics company, to develop open data formats. He has been recognized for his leadership and success by Forbes, BusinessWeek, INC., PC World, and Vanity Fair.

Matt is originally from Houston, Texas, where he attended the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts and studied jazz saxophone. In his spare time, Matt is an avid photographer.

Matt splits time between Houston, New York, and San Francisco.

Troy Dean

Troy Dean is co-founder of WP Elevation, the largest business community for WordPress consultants. His background is as a WordPress developer working with clients such as Quickbooks, F1 Grand Prix and The Ashes Cricket. Troy has spoken at several WordCamps, including Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Chicago, New York, Boston and Phoenix.

Sakin Shrestha

Sakin Shrestha is a technology entrepreneur and an avid WordPresser from Kathmandu, Nepal. He is the owner of Catch Internet Pvt. Ltd. and co-founder of Acclaim Technology. He is also a co-owner at ThemeReview.co.

Having got his first taste of WordPress in 2007, he was inspired to build a career on it. Ever since, he’s been contributing to the WordPress Core, Theme Review, Community, Accessibility, Polyglots, Themes, Plugins and TV teams. He is also among the founding members of WordPress Nepal and is actively involved in the WordPress community in Nepal and abroad.

You’ll easily recognize Sakin’s friendly smile in the crowd. So, make sure you go and say “Hi”. When you don’t find him working on WordPress, he is mostly busy blogging, biking, taking photographs, traveling or playing his guitar!

Éverton Rosário

Facebook Partner Engineer and Main commiter for SDK and one of the most active in Instant Articles open source community. Co-author of the Facebook Instant Articles WordPress plugin.

Maile Ohye

Joining Google in 2005, Maile works on Google Search as a Developer Programs Tech Lead. A few of Maile’s projects include rel=”canonical” (co-author of the IETF RFC), and rel=”next” and rel=”prev” for paginated content.

Prior to Google, Maile was a systems integrator specializing in content management systems for organizations including AT&T and the Office of the Secretary of Defense. She earned a B.A. in Cognitive Science with a Computer Science emphasis from the University of California at Berkeley.

Doris Chen

Dr. Doris Chen is a Senior Technology Evangelist at Microsoft for the Western region of the United States, specialized in web technologies (mobile web, HTML5, JavaScript, and Java).
Doris has over 18 years of experience in the software industry working in several open source web tier technologies, Java platform, .NET and distributed computing technologies. She speaks at numerous international conferences and user groups including O’Reilly OSCON, Fluent, Dev Nexus, HTML5 Dev Conference, WebVisions, JavaOne, SD Forum, and worldwide User Groups. Doris works very closely to create and foster the open source community around Java, NetBeans, Glassfish, and related technologies.

Before joining Microsoft, Doris Chen was a Technology Evangelist at Sun Microsystems.
Doris received her Ph.D. from the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) in computer engineering, specializing in medical informatics.

Erica Varlese

By day, Erica Varlese works at Automattic. She spends her time on the Happiness Hiring team, welcoming folks passionate about support into the Automattic family. Outside of work, she has a dog, Francis, who she thinks should be the official mascot of her home state, New Jersey. Her background in social work and communications is what drew her to WordPress, but it’s the welcoming, creative, and brilliant community that has inspired her to stick around.

Michael Arestad

Michael is a designer at Automattic. He may be a tad obsessed with CSS (especially Sass) and beautiful typography. Michael is currently working on some pretty neato WordPress projects.

Beth Soderberg

Beth Soderberg is an independent developer and digital communications strategist based out of Washington, DC. She focuses on building thoughtfully architected websites that enable her clients to optimize their online presence while being empowered in managing their content. She is obsessive about clean code, solid design execution, and implementation of cutting-edge front end technologies. In her spare time Beth volunteers as the community representative for the WordPress Training Team, helps organize the WordPress DC Meetup, and is a co-organizer of the annual DCFemTech Hack for Good in Washington, DC.

Hugo Baeta

Portuguese designer in San Francisco, with 13+ years experience in art direction, brand design, interaction design, and front-end development. Been involved with WordPress for about 10 years, since version 2.0. Helped found the Portuguese WordPress Community and organize the first WordCamp in Lisbon. Spoke at a series of WordCamps and other events, including Accelerate.LGBT. Hugo worked for nearly 6 years at Automattic, where he helped evolve the WordPress and WordPress.com brands amongst other things. Now working as the Brand & Visual Designer at Blend.

Sonja Leix

Sonja is a location-independent WordPress designer and Digital Strategist. She’s an active member of the WordPress community, contributes to the Polyglots and design teams, and helps out with community events such as WordCamp New York and Europe. She loves working with passionate people and sharing her experiences with the community.

Taco Verdonschot

Taco works at Yoast as Community Manager. In this role, he’s responsible for the distributed support team, the Yoast Translate project, WordPress Meetup Nijmegen and NijmegenPHP. He’s also heavily involved in testing the Yoast products and loves to find bugs in anyone’s software. In the WordPress community, he’s most active in the Polyglots team. Starting up new translators (at Contributor Days) to expand the community is what he loves to do most there. Luckily, Taco gets to attend quite a few WordCamps a year, thanks to his generous employer.

Since 2016, Taco’s also one of the organizers of WordCamp Nederland.

Joe Dolson

Joe Dolson is an active contributor to the WordPress accessibility team, and provides ongoing support to the Theme Review team by performing accessibility audits on themes submitted for the accessibility-ready tag. He’s been developing for WordPress since 2007. Joe provides accessibility consulting, develops WordPress plug-ins, and builds bespoke WordPress web sites primarily for non-profit and disability service organizations. Joe also brews beer, practices Shotokan Karate, and plays classical violin.

Gary Pendergast

Gary is a WordPress, web and music geek who writes poetry with Automattic. He’s been know to commit random things to WordPress Core, just to see what would happen. He can be observed in his natural habitat at pento.net, or usually in Melbourne, Australia.

John Gamboa

John is a Technical Success Manager at WP Engine facilitating the success of its largest enterprise customers. He worked more than two years on its support team in a variety of capacities helping customers with a wide-range of issues. John also spent the better part of four years living in South Korea and China, where he worked as a technical editor, writer, teacher and web developer before coming back to the U.S.

Lisa Melegari

Hailing from Orlando, Florida, Lisa’s first passion was video games, but when that didn’t pan out as a career, she chose to devote herself to content writing on the Internet. A fateful invitation from fellow nerd, David Laietta, led her to the hallowed grounds of WordPress and the WPOrlando community. After several years working with the WPORL community, she rose up the ranks to take over as the lead organizer of WordCamp Orlando. A regular speaker at several southeastern WordCamps, she gives insight into site content development from the eyes of a creator. When she’s not doing Internetty things, she’s cooking for friends and wrangling her 10 cats.

Pippin Williamson

Pippin Williamson is a WordPress plugin developer from Hutchinson, KS. He runs PippinsPlugins.com and is the founder and lead developer of Restrict Content Pro, Easy Digital Downloads, AffiliateWP and many more WordPress plugins. Beyond WordPress, Pippin has a love for sour beer, home brewing, and is an avid cyclist.

Nancy Thanki

Nancy Thanki is a photographer, filmmaker, and Happiness Engineer. Whether she is tinkering on the web or editing a film, she’s enjoys introducing users and storytellers to visual design and how to avoid the pitfalls of “en vogue” to create products that can withstand the test of rising and falling fashions in typography, photography, moving images, and design.

Cameron Barrett

Cameron (@camworld) pioneered the blog format in the late 1990s. He’s built web sites for presidential candidates, the U.S. Army, the World Economic Forum and led the migration of 70+ web sites from a proprietary SaaS to WordPress for NJ’s largest public school district. He’s now migrating all 14,000+ U.S. public school districts to WordPress (using a WordPress-powered Saas), saving millions of taxpayer dollars. He hails from Northern Michigan and currently lives outside of NYC with his family.

Svetlana Kouznetsova

Svetlana (Sveta) Kouznetsova is a founder of Audio Accessibility who consults and trains businesses on how to make their aural information accessible via quality captioning and other types of communication access. She is also a public speaker and an author of a book, Sound Is Not Enough: Captioning as Universal Design. Sveta is an experienced deaf professional with a Masters degree in Internet Technology and several professional certifications who has also been involved in other projects related to web user experience and accessibility. Follow Sveta on Twitter at @svknyc and @audio_a11y and on Audio Accessibility Facebook page.

Tina Kesova

Tina is the VP of Strategic Partnerships at SiteGround web hosting company. In her role she is primarily responsible for growing the company client base through partnerships. She oversees the events and affiliates marketing teams through which SiteGround currently recruits the majority of their partners. She has attended numerous WordCamps and other industry events and thanks to her and her team efforts the company has managed to grow their client base and build the successful brand that SiteGround is today. In her spare time she loves exercising at the gym, capturing beautiful moments and exploring new places around the world.

Zach LeBar

I’m a designer at heart and developer by trade. I’ve been working on the Web for 7 years. Currently a freelancer, specializing in graphic design (including logos, branding, and illustration work) as well as custom WordPress theme development.

Sal Ferrarello

Sal is a WordPress developer with a focus on the Genesis theme framework and Bootstrap front-end framework. He is a contributor to the Genesis framework, author of the Bootstrap Genesis Theme, and author of the Stop Emails plugin available on WordPress.org.

Sal blogs about web development at http://salferrarello.com/.

Kathryn Presner

Kathryn Presner thrives on helping people get the most out of WordPress. After a career designing and building websites for clients, she joined Automattic as a Happiness Engineer in 2012. She’s currently Theme Whisperer on the Theme Team, where she helps folks with customization, configuration, and troubleshooting. She enjoys spreading her passion for WordPress and encouraging new public speakers at WordCamps, Girl Geeks, Ladies Learning Code, and other grassroots events. Non-WordPress obsessions include vintage Pyrex mixing bowls and growing garlic.

Andrea Zoellner

Andrea is a freelance copywriter and content consultant at Automattic. She loves wordplay, coffee shop hopping, and blogging about how to pack the ultimate carry-on.

Sara Cannon

Sara Cannon is an entrepreneur, creative director, and artist. She is the Managing Partner and Creative Director at Range and is the Founder of Spruce Planner, an up and coming planning and goal setting app for women.

Range is an agency specializing in strategic design and WordPress development. Sara loves leading her remote team in creating informed designs. She has done work for clients such as Disney Publishing, Re/code, and Flickr. She also speaks internationally on web design, user experience, creativity, typography, and more.

Follow Sara on twitter @saracannon.

Petya Raykovska

Petya is a Senior Project Manager at Human Made where she helps large projects across big publishers and enterprise succeed. She is a huge WordPress enthusiast, active member of the WordPress community and is one of the WordPress Polyglots team leads supporting the people who translate WordPress to more than 160 languages. Petya helped organise WordCamp Europe 2014 and WordCamp Europe 2015 and lead the team that organised WordCamp Europe 2016 in Vienna.

John Maeda

Global Head, Computational Design and Inclusion of Automattic. Formerly Partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, President of Rhode Island School of Design, Professor at the MIT Media Laboratory.

Dennis Hong

By day, I engineer happiness at WordPress.com. By night, I am a relationships and comedy writer, which can be redundant or an oxymoron, depending on your perspective.

Courtney OCallaghan

Who I am … professional listener, vegetarian mom, animal caretaker, people watcher, culture enthusiast, off-hours feminist, book hoarder, designer/coder/other, Chief Digital Officer at Freer and Sackler Galleries, CA native, proud DC resident always in search of an ocean.

Shayda Torabi

Shayda Torabi is a storyteller, digital marketer, and lover of all things WordPress. From the people to the platform, she’s been using WordPress since 2004 and hasn’t looked back. Working at WP Engine as part of their Marketing team, Shayda focuses on building authentic relationships with the amazing people who make up the WordPress community. Having been to over 30 WordCamps all over the world from Sevilla to Chicago to San Francisco, one thing has remained constant, the generosity of the people of WordPress. She likes loud music, iced coffee and chronicles her life adventures through her food blog, www.DineWithShayda.com.

Nicole Kohler

Nicole Kohler is the content manager for WooCommerce at Automattic. With a background in eCommerce site management, content strategy, and customer service, she spends her time crafting blog posts and other resources designed to help store owners learn important tips and skills about selling online. When not writing, she can be found playing video games, lurking on Twitter, or trying out a new craft beer.

Lauren Comito

Lauren Comito is a cape wearing, ukulele playing, tech training, job search helping, activist librarian in NYC. As the Job and Business Academy Manager for Queens Library’s Central location, she helps people to fold technology into their daily lives and break down the walls that keep them from being fully employed. Lauren discovered WordPress when she needed an easy web site solution to help save NYC’s libraries from drastic budget cuts, and she has been working with it ever since. She is creative, passionate about connecting library patrons to services, and a true believer in the ability of the library to change people’s lives and communities for the better. If you aren’t a believer, get the hell out of her way.

Lisa Sabin-Wilson

Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer at WebDevStudios. Author: WordPress For Dummies

Mika Epstein

Mika Ariela Epstein is better known as Ipstenu, the Half-Elf Rogue. Working for DreamHost, specializing in WordPress hosting (aka ‘WordPress Guru’), Mika helps make WordPress and hosting better for everyone. When she isn’t reviewing plugins she’s helping in the support forums and speaking at WordCamps worldwide about code and open source technology. A self-taught guru on Multisite and .htaccess, she has a passion for writing and technology and blogs about them whenever possible.

Karl Kevilus

I’ve been using WordPress since 2.1 for multiple unique applications. My own NBARefsSucks.com rant blog, helping the FBI capture bank robbers, to working with H-E-B/Central Market to revolutionize grocery shopping in Texas with WordPress and WooCommerce.

Ines van Essen

Ines van Essen has been working with WordPress for a number of years, of which the past 5 years have been primarily focused on user support. For her own clients at first, and later as a freelance support engineer for WordPress plugin developers. She’s currently working as a Happiness Engineer for WooCommerce at Automattic.

Chris Lema

Chris Lema coaches companies building commercial products in the WordPress ecosystem. He’s also a daily blogger, a public speaker, and product strategist. He helps companies leverage WordPress, and helps WordPress companies find leverage.

Mike Schroder

Mike Schroder, known as Shredder to many, is a cross-cultural kid, coffee-drinking sailor, and lover of Open Source.

He’s a WordPress Core Developer, was Release Lead for WordPress 4.5, and works as Director of WordPress Strategy at DreamHost.
You can find him blogging on geeky things at getsource.net.

Mel Choyce

Mel is a Boston-based Product Designer and a WordPress core contributor. She loves big type, cold brew coffee, and printmaking.

Kelly Dwan

Kelly Dwan is a Cambridge-based Code Wrangler at Automattic. She has worked on everything from small business websites, to higher education, to enterprise and big media. In her spare time, Kelly develops WordPress themes and contributes to the WordPress community.

Tammie Lister

Tammie works at Automattic as a UX Designer within the theme team. She has a varied background including psychology, design, front end development and UX. She is a contributor to WordPress both for design and themes.

Josepha Haden

Josepha comes from a long line of writers and was raised to be a life-long learner. She has a passion for language and storycrafting, a skill she practices on starsandthemoon.com. Josepha has over a decade of experience using SEO, data analysis, and content marketing to bring success and visibility to clients all over the world. Since 2010 she’s been working in her hometown of Kansas City to increase digital literacy and get more women in tech. Josepha works at Automattic as a community organizer for the WordPress open source project and can be found on Twitter as @josephahaden.

Cory Miller

Cory Miller (that’s me) is a former newspaper journalist turned full-time entrepreneur. In 2008, he started iThemes, which builds web design software and offers cutting-edge web design training for thousands of customers around the globe. Named the 7th fastest growing company in Oklahoma City in 2011 by the Metro 50, iThemes employs over 20 people around the globe with headquarters in Edmond, Oklahoma. In 2011, he co-founded The Div, Inc, a nonprofit tech foundation aimed at inspiring and training the next generation of web developers through its kid’s program, Div Jr.

He is the co-author of WordPress All-in-One for Dummies (Wiley, 2011) and is a member and current communications chair of the Oklahoma chapter of Entrepreneurs’ Organization, a network of over 8,000 entrepreneurs in 40 countries with companies that have revenue over $1 million dollars annually.

He blogs regularly about entrepreneurship and career advice here at CoryMiller.com. He is married to Lindsey Miller, a political fundraising consultant. They have an adorable son named Caloway and a little sweetheart daughter named Lillian.

Tessa Needham Synnott

Tessa is a designer and teacher who empowers small business owners to take control of their WordPress websites at wpsupergeek.com. She also has a background in performance, video, design, photography and writing. She is Australian, but currently lives in the Bay Area, CA, with her husband, two sons, and cat.

Ryan Markel

Ryan engineers happiness for WordPress.com VIP from St. Louis. He’s been blogging in some form or another since the turn of the millennium, eventually learning and loving WordPress. He enjoys the study of games and helping his wife (try to) control his five children.

Lisa Yoder

Lisa Yoder is an independent front-end developer based in Lancaster, PA, though she still spends time in Philly. She has BA degrees in English and Spanish, and prior to joining the tech world, she worked as a teacher, proofreader, and an editor of a small town newspaper. When she’s not working, she’s probably traveling, blogging, reading, writing, taking photos, eating cheese, baking, posing as a freelance food and travel writer, and/or cuddling a cat.

Elise Desaulniers

Élise rediscovered the pleasure of writing thanks to WordPress and has been blogging (in French!) for seven years. She is a founding partner at Desaulniers Simard, a boutique consulting firm based in Montréal, Québec, Canada, where she’s trained hundreds of people to use WordPress and developed dozens of sites. She has spoken at WordCamp Montréal, Toronto, Orlando and New York, and is the author of three books about ethical questions related to food.

Topher DeRosia

Topher has been a web developer for over 20 years, working exclusively with WordPress since 2010. He is currently a full time WordPress developer for Modern Tribe and also curates HeroPress.com.

Courtney Wilburn

Courtney is a full-stack web developer with O3 World. A native of Memphis, TN, and graduate of Bryn Mawr College, she found her way to web development via an unusual path, and can probably say that she may be the only person who is both a certified phlebotomist and Aikido black belt attending the conference. Courtney loves finding unusual and efficient ways to solve problems, and enjoys developing agile workflows almost as much as she enjoys finding creative ways to parse heaps of data. When she’s not diving deep into web applications, she can be found running or biking around Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, regardless of the weather, traveling, cooking, making beer, or singing karaoke duets with her wife.

Joost de Valk

Joost is the founder and CEO of Yoast, a geek by background having built his first website in 1994 at 12 years old, he became a marketeer by trade. At Yoast he combined the two, leading to the very successful Yoast SEO plugin which is now available on several platforms.

Christopher Hinds

Towards the end of 2015, after over a decade in the hospitality industry, Chris collaborated with his wife Amber to launch Road Warrior Creative, a digital agency based in Fort Collins, Colorado. As Road Warrior Creative’s COO, Chris fills an important financial and business management role. He oversees all support requests, directing them to the appropriate channels, handles Road Warrior Creative’s billing and accounting, is the primary point of contact for all new client inquiries, and helps to manage search engine optimization projects. Perhaps more importantly, he keeps us well fed and happily coding with Instagram-worthy lunches.

Outside of Road Warrior Creative, Chris’ favorite things are his two daughters, PC gaming, hiking, camping, and spending way more time than anyone should on Reddit. He loves anything to do with food and cooking (of course), and especially enjoys making Indian and Mediterranean food. Chris is a big supporter of Child’s Play, a charity that provides toys and games to children in hospitals.

Winstina Hughes

Winstina Hughes is concluding the Master of City and Regional Planning degree program at the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers University. She received a B.A. from Rutgers. She’s written about real estate development and transportation for hyper local news, and maintains her own WordPress.com blog on suburban planning and community engagement in the town she lives. She is also a WordPress NYC Meetup co-organizer. Winstina bleeds scarlet, loves hip-hop, and adores WordPress software.

Michele Mizejewski

Michele is a User Experience Designer at the University of California, San Francisco. A longtime WordPress enthusiast, she believes that websites should be beautiful, simple, and intuitive. When not curating, creating, or consuming web content, she can be found forest bathing or seeking narratives.

Scott Taylor

Scott Taylor is a Senior Software Engineer at The New York Times on the Interactive News Team. He is a Core Developer of WordPress and was the Release Lead for WordPress 4.4. Scott lives in Williamsburg (Brooklyn, not Colonial) with his wife, Allie, and their 3 cats: Waffles, Willa, and Feline Dion.

Marc Coleman

Marc is the founder and president of The Tactile Group. Trained in electrical engineering at Princeton University and architecture at Temple University, he brings over two decades experience in creative direction, design, business entrepreneurship, and client relations. Marc is the driving force in developing business relations and the company’s artistic vision.

Andrew Nacin

Andrew Nacin is a Lead Developer of WordPress. He’s led major releases, mentored contributors, and spearheaded new development. He has strong feelings about the core philosophies of WordPress, among them “decisions, not options” — software should be opinionated in lieu of burdening the user with too many options. In January 2014, he joined the U.S. Digital Service at the White House, where he works to improve the usefulness and reliability of the country’s most important digital services.