"This is the first conference in years where I have taken pages of notes for every session. So many insightful conversations, so much positivity towards the future of the Health Club industry and its businesses."
Dr. Paul Bedford Principle Retention Guru
Closing Keynote Speaker
Dan Cath is Partnerships Lead for Reserve with Google. He graduated from Skidmore College in 2003 with a degree in Business and Marketing, and has worked with hundreds of small, medium, and large businesses and developers in a variety of disciplines. Following an early career in automotive shop management software, Dan worked at Google in the early days of AdWords and AdSense on a variety of special projects, including Ad Review tools and early Audience-based marketing segmentation. Dan has helped evolve Google Maps by working with data and technology companies including launching Hotel Ads, and pushed the limits of precise-location mobile experiences on Android and iOS by working on Google's BLE Beacon Platform. He has a deep passion for music, guitar, swing dancing, science-fiction, and finding ways to entertain his toddler son.
2017 Technology Summit Advisory Board
Adam Zeitsiff CIO Gold's Gym International
Adam Zeitsiff is the Chief Information Officer of Gold’s Gym International, the most recognized gym chain in the world with more than 750 locations in 37 states and 28 countries. He is responsible for the leadership of all internal and external-facing information technology, product development, security, and telephony projects that support their 150+ corporate club locations, their Dallas headquarters, and their 7,000+ corporate employees. Adam brings 20+ years of experience operating and growing multiple technology, infrastructure and SaaS companies, including co-founding three technology businesses from concept through a liquidity event. Adam also served as the President of Jonas Fitness, one of the largest business units within JonasSoftware, with 100’s of employees and 1,000’s of customers in the US, Canada and the UK. Adam has built a reputation for being able to accelerate business development and expanding a company’s market footprint by applying his deep insight of technology, infrastructure and the SaaS model. While the co-founder & CEO of IVCi, he helped guide the company to Inc. 500 status 4-years in a row, and most recently, Adam was named as a 2015 “CEO of the Year” recipient by The Long Island Business News.
Adam Podber Senior Director of Technology Blink Fitness
Since 2013, Adam Podber has been a member of Blink Fitness' leadership team serving as the Senior Director of Technology. Adam leads a passionate and talented team at Blink. They're kept busy applying modern scalable technologies to the high-value fitness space and are driven by positively impacting the lives of Blink's members every day. Prior to joining Blink, Mr. Podber held various senior technology leadership roles at Bliss Spas, Starwood Hotels under the W Hotels brand, and Steiner Leisure Ltd. He has managed and or implemented point of sale, franchise operations, project management, customer service, supply chain, and e-commerce technologies. As a professional services leader of technology management services for All Covered, a nationwide technology consulting firm, he supported a broad range of industries spanning traditional brick-and-mortar businesses, digital firms, and manufacturers.
Larry Carrington Director of Information Technology Wellbridge
As the Director of Information Technology at Wellbridge, Larry Carrington manages the strategy and execution of application/software development for 20 athletic clubs and spas across the United States, and also leads their business continuity, telecommunications, security and voice and data networks. After 18 months at Wellbridge, Larry may be new to the industry but he has more than two decades of technology experience. His career began in the financial services industry of New York, working for a Fortune 100 company. Larry then transferred to Denver to lead several of that company’s IT teams, including the service desk, server management units and desktop management. After 16 years, Larry transitioned to the legal sector, where for nine years he was a senior manager of the largest law firm in the rocky mountain region. With a background that showcases a variety of skills in different arenas, Larry looks forward to applying that experience to his new role in the fitness industry.
Garrett Borunda Director of Member Technologies 24 Hour Fitness
Garrett is a Silicon Valley veteran who graduated from Stanford University and started his career at Apple. There he developed a passion for developing and delivering solutions that make a difference in the lives of customers. He has held technology and business leadership roles at companies that include Symantec, Yahoo, and Technicolor. At 24 Hour Fitness, he is leveraging technology to make a difference in the fitness and health of its Members. He is focused on connecting them with their fitness and on digitally extending the support of the Club to anywhere they may be.
General Session Speakers
Dr. Paul Bedford Principle Retention Guru
Dr. Bedford has more than 20 years experience working in the fitness industry. He started as a gym instructor and worked as a personal trainer and fitness manger. Paul's managed a variety of clubs (public and private sectors). He holds a master’s degree in exercise and health behaviours and a PhD from the London Sports Institute. The aim of his PhD research was to identify interventions in a gym environment to increase adherence. The study increased average participation from 6 months to 13 months. Following his PhD research, Paul developed a training programme to boost retention that has now been utilized by 25 club operators spanning 93 facilities. Paul has also been involved in the development and application of a bespoke behaviour change models as part of ‘YMCA Activate England’ – a national physical activity project aimed at engaging hard to reach groups. YMCA Activate England successfully engaged over 8,000 people throughout England of which 30% were from areas of deprivation, 46% were new to exercise and over 80% were not participating enough to benefit their health (CMO guidelines). Paul is a frequent speaker regularly appearing on the international stage at IHRSA, LIW and FIA Flame Conferences as well as presenting for individual clients such as Life Fitness at their Global Customer Summit, May 2010 and for the European Health and Fitness Association’s European Leader’s Forum in Barcelona in June 2010. As a qualified teacher, Paul also have significant expertise in the education sector and I currently lectures at Middlesex University on physical activity and exercise psychology as part of their master’s degree program and at Bath University where he tutors GP’s (MD’s) on brief health behaviour change interventions. Prior to this, Paul was a senior lecturer with YMCA fitness industry training for 14 years where I trained 3,500 Gym instructors and personal trainers
Paul Bowman CEO Wexer
Paul Bowman, is a successful and enthusiastic fitness industry professional with experience as an operator globally with Les Mills, Virgin Active & Gymbox and as a supplier. He serves as CEO of Wexer, a company that supplies pre-recorded and live-streamed group exercise and cycling classes to the majority of the top 30 health club groups around the world. As an elite athlete, Bowman competed on the New Zealand National Volleyball team, winning several regional and international titles. He remains dedicated to fitness and sports. Paul contributes actively to the industry as a writer and speaker.
Elisabeth Beller VP, Health, Wellness, and Financial Services 3Pillar Global
Elisabeth leads the Health & Wellness industry team at 3Pillar Global, a software product innovation and development company. She excels at understanding customer, business and technology needs and identifying solutions to solve big problems. Elisabeth has more than 20 years of experience building products to meet users’ needs. Prior to joining 3Pillar, Beller was VP, Product Management at Employee Navigator, a SaaS company providing online solutions to insurance brokers. Previously, she started the Digital Experience practice at a local consulting firm where she defined the company’s digital service offerings and led a team of designers, engineers and analysts building web and mobile products. When she’s not at work, you can find her taking a boxing class or watching her daughters compete in soccer and tae kwon do.
Rick Caro President Management Vision, Inc.
Rick Caro is the President of Management Vision, Inc., a leading consulting firm specializing in the club industry. It provides management expertise to clubs, real estate developers, hospitals, hotels, resorts, appraisers and to the courts as an expert witness. Management Vision is widely regarded for its feasibility studies, business plans, loan proposals, valuation of the worth of clubs, assistance in the buying and selling of clubs, operational analyses of existing clubs and financial acumen. It has experience with small- and large-sized clubs, single-activity and multi-sport facilities, suburban and urban sites, owned and leasehold properties and start-up and take-over business situations throughout the U.S. and other countries. Mr. Caro also founded Club Market Vision, Inc., a sister company, to provide strategic and marketing consulting, industry and club member research assistance.
Maureen Cushing VP of Technology Union Square Hospitality Group
Maureen applies over 15 years of information technology experience as USHG’s Vice President of Technology and Processes. She is also one of the founders of TechTable. Prior to joining USHG in 2013, Maureen gained diverse technology management experience in a range of industries, including fashion, retail, and food. She spent six years in IT leadership at FAO Schwarz, followed by two years at the renowned specialty grocery and wine shop, Dean & Deluca. Directly prior to joining the team at USHG, Maureen spent seven years as the Director of Technology for the national luxury retailer, Intermix, where she helped the company scale its technology solutions for sustainable growth. At USHG, Maureen applies her knowledge of operations and technology to create tools and efficiencies throughout the USHG family of award-winning businesses. Maureen is a graduate of Adelphi University.
Ken Engel EVP Saberpoint
Ken Engel is the EVP of Saberpoint. He plays the role of Offensive Coordinator and provides senior level direction and leadership of sales and marketing initiatives to grow sales and profitability for the company. He has been in the wireless industry since 1986, and specializes in working with enterprise clients to meet their wireless needs. Over the years, he has worked closely with companies including Pfizer, Prudential, Goldman Sachs, Bear Steans, Chubb Insurance, Deutsche Bank and Mercedes Benz among others. Ken has extensive relationships with wireless carriers, manufacturers and distributors. Previously, he worked for McCaw Cellular as a Corporate and National Account Manager as well as sales & marketing positions with ITT, MCI, and Electro Components in varying facets of telecommunications, data communications and computer peripherals.
John Ford CEO Netpulse
John Ford started his career in fitness technology as the founder of Virtual Active – a first person, running, hiking, and cycling video experience distributed to millions of exercisers around the world. Having retired from running around the world with high-tech camera gear, John now spends his time building mobile technology that helps health clubs engage members, drive revenue and enhance the club experience.
Steve Groves CIO & VP GoodLife Fitness
Over 20 years of success in bridging the logistical and communication gaps between business leaders and their technical teams in order to achieve results. Collaborating with senior management and company boards to drive the strategic use of technology, both to support employees and to delight customers. Guiding fellow executives as they uncover the art of the possible in terms of using digital technology to personalize the customer experience. Creative thinker with an eye towards the technology trends on the horizon. Extensive experience in ICT service management, Internet strategy, digital media strategy, mobile application design, productivity consulting and management of high performance teams.
Michael Katigbak Senior Director of Marketing José Andrés' ThinkFoodGroup
Michael Katigback is the Senior Director of Marketing for ThinkFood Group, the innovative company behind José Andrés restaurants, hotels, food products, media, educational initiatives and philanthropy. Michael has spent the last 12 years dedicated to hospitality, having directed Marketing and Sales initiatives for companies including Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts, Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group, and Capella Hotel Group. He believes that in an era of nonstop connectivity, we must maintain the personal relationship we each have with the experience of food (or a great meal) while being able to share and experience that with others through the reach of marketing, social media, and technology.
Doug Jones Chief Merchandising Officer The Vitamin Shoppe
Doug Jones is the Chief Merchandising Officer for the Vitamin Shoppe. He was previously Senior Vice President, Merchandising. In this capacity he is responsible for all aspects of merchandising for the Vitamin Shoppe’s retail stores, online sites, and catalog which include: assortment management, visual merchandising, vendor management, pricing strategy, and promotional activity. Prior to taking over the Merchandising function, Mr. Jones was the Vice President of Supply Chain Management for the Vitamin Shoppe. He joined the company in 1998 as the Director of Planning and Analysis. During his tenure at the Vitamin Shoppe he has held positions of increasing seniority including responsibility for the Distribution Center, logistics, packaging, customer service departments, Inventory Management, Sourcing, Product Development and Purchasing teams. Prior to joining the Vitamin Shoppe, Mr. Jones worked at Tiffany & Co. as the Project Director of Planning and Analysis where he led major change initiatives. Before Tiffany & Co., Mr. Jones was a financial Analyst with Kmart Fashions. Mr. Jones holds a degree in Finance from The American University in Washington, D.C. He also has a specialization in Japanese and Real Estate.
Andrew Kolman Global Director of Product Development - Console Technology Johnson Health Tech. Co., Ltd.
Andrew Kolman currently serves as the Global Director of Product Development - Console Technology for Johnson Health Tech, which is headquartered in Taiwan with its global marketing headquarters near Madison, Wisconsin. In this role, he oversees all aspects of product development, strategic partner management and product strategy for technology products across all brands in the Johnson portfolio. Johnson Health Tech develops and manufactures a wide assortment of fitness equipment for both commercial and residential use. The company’s products include treadmills, elliptical trainers, exercise bikes and strength training equipment, and its brand portfolio contains Matrix, Vision and Horizon Fitness. Previously, Andrew spent two years as Senior Product Manager–Console Technology for Johnson and five years as Product Manager–Treadmills for Johnson in both the commercial and retail channels. Before that, he spent nearly seven years in an engineering capacity working in various industries, including automotive and industrial hydraulics. Andrew earned his degree in marketing from Lakeland College in Sheboygan, Wisconsin.
Avi Lasarow CEO DNAFit Ltd
Mike Leveque COO MYZONE, Inc.
Mike Leveque has a decade of executive leadership experience in health and wellness innovation. He previously was the President and Chief Operating Officer of Star Trac Fitness and is currently the Chief Operating Officer of MYZONE. MYZONE is a chest strap and monitoring system that displays heart rate, calories, time and effort to a LCD monitor, while simultaneously creating an online logbook of all physical activity that can be viewed anywhere in the world through the Internet.
Josh Lloyd CTO FitMetrix
Josh Lloyd is the co-founder and CTO of FitMetrix, which provides state of the art technology to gyms and health clubs to give members the ability to schedule, train and receive real-time tracking of effort and performance through a facility’s website or customizable app. FitMetrix has partnered with hundreds of gyms (and counting) across the nation, including Life Time Fitness, Gold’s Gym, Cycle Bar, Cooper Institute, US Fitness and more. Prior to co-founding FitMetrix, Josh was the co-founder and visionary of ShopVisible LLC, which provided business owners with smart technology that combined solutions for customer service, back office, inventory, marketing, accounting and IT into one SEO friendly tool. Due to the success of ShopVisible, Josh was ranked as one of Atlanta Business Leaders’ Top 25 Entrepreneurs in Atlanta in 2012. Prior to ShopVisible, Josh was the Director of Research and Development for CareMedic Systems Inc., as well as Omega Systems Inc. Josh has a bachelor’s degree in business from Florida Atlantic University and has 20 years of experience in professional software development. In his free time, Lloyd is a certified pilot of small engine planes and is a rabid Miami Dolphins fan.
Brett Maloney CEO Ladder
Brett is co-founder and CEO of Boston-based fit-tech startup Ladder, a mobile platform that connects people with local health and wellness professionals via digital coaching. Brett's decade-long career in the fitness industry includes executive rolls as an entrepreneur including building two successful equipment distribution and consulting companies, a transcendent non-profit geared to combat childhood obesity, and most recently serving as the chief executive officer for a publicly traded nutritional supplement distribution platform. Brett also serves as an advisor to The Medical Fitness Network as well as 64px.com, the world's largest network of Google Chrome extensions.
Bill McBride President & Chief Executive Officer Active Wellness
Bill is a health club industry veteran with over 25 years of experience leading and managing all aspects of commercial health clubs, medical fitness centers, residential, community, multi-tenant and corporate fitness sites. He co-founded Active Sports Clubs and Active Wellness, LLC and owns a health club consultancy - BMC3. Bill has served as Chairman of the International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association (IHRSA) Board of Directors, President of the Mid-Atlantic Club Management Association (MACMA) and served on the Industry Advisory Board for the American Council of Exercise (ACE). He is actively engaged as an author on industry education, serves on several fitness related technology company Advisory Boards, serves on the Medical Wellness Association (MWA) and Medical Fitness Network (MFN) Advisory Boards. He is currently also serving on the ACSM Facility Standards & Guidelines 5th Edition Committee. Bill consults & speaks regularly on industry topics throughout the world.
Dana Milkie CEO & President InTouch Technology
As President and CEO of InTouch Technology, Dana Milkie is responsible for driving company growth through the successful implementation of InTouch’s short and long term business strategies. Passionate about the health and fitness industry, Dana’s move to InTouch was a natural fit. Since joining the company in 2016, Dana has been committed to addressing the changing needs of the industry by expanding InTouch’s software solution to include member acquisition, engagement and retention tools. Dana is a recognized, seasoned veteran of the fitness industry with 30 years of professional experience. He has successfully helped both small and large businesses optimize their growth, resources and profitability strategies. As a respected and insightful representative of the industry, Dana has been interviewed and spoken extensively in industry-focused publications including CBI, IHRSA, Club Solutions, Fitness Business Canada, Club Industry and many others. Prior to joining InTouch, Dana was Senior Vice President of Client Management with ABC Financial, responsible for the management of ABC’s industry leading customer portfolio. Additionally, he served as Senior Vice President of a multi-location franchise group. Outside of InTouch, Dana sits on the Board of Directors of several companies. He currently serves as the President of The Foundation for Community Betterment, a national non-profit organization, dedicated to helping individuals and organizations with immediate and critical needs.
Mike Morris Founder and Principal Consultant Crest Circle Management Consultants
Al Noshirvani Chairman, Motionsoft Co-Host, Motionsoft Technology Summit
Al Noshirvani, along with his brother, acquired the assets of KI Software in October of 2004 and founded Motionsoft, a club management software pioneer with integrated billing, and back office support services that helps fitness, health, and wellness firms obtain operational excellence with industry leading member insights and analysis tools.
Since the initial acquisition of KI, Al has completed five other acquisitions, raised close to $40 million in venture capital, attracted some of the most well-known brand in fitness as customers, has grown Motionsoft to over 100 employees managing over 2,750 fitness-focused gyms, health clubs, and wellness centers and nearly $3 billion in annual payment processing.
Today, as Chairman and Chief Strategy Officer, Al leads Motiosoft’s efforts to accelerate new growth while addressing the core operational needs of gym owners and club professional who are laser focused on providing outstanding member experiences.
As an industry thought leader on technology with 25 years of software sales experience, including four years as General Manager of KI Software, Al speaks at numerous events on the business value of technology in the fitness industry. In 2017, Al was selected as charter member of IHRSA’s Innovation & Technology Advisory Council. In 2010, Al was named by the Washington Business Journal as a member of the “40 Under 40” that recognizes the Greater Washington regions brightest young business leaders. He is also the co-host of the annual industry conference The Motionsoft Technology Summit.
Previously, Al was a founder and Executive VP of Sales for a medical software imaging company that he successfully exited. He lives with his wife and daughter in Maryland where Motionsoft is headquartered.
Danny Orlick CEO NetGym
Danny Orlick has been an experienced Software-Sales Executive by day and a passionate group fitness instructor by night. As one of the top cycling instructors for Crunch and Equinox in San Francisco for the past 4 years, he personally experienced and witnessed the inefficient sub communication and management process that exists for many clubs today. By combining both his passion in software and fitness, NetGym was born.
Grant Otto CTO Motionsoft
Grant Otto is the Chief Technology Officer of Motionsoft. As a technology innovator, Grant has developed enterprise-scale global products with international teams while successfully integrating product management and big data infrastructures. Prior to joining Motionsoft, Grant was the CTO of HealthiNation, the largest online producer of health and wellness videos. Previously, Grant managed technology for The Weather Channel outside the U.S. as Vice President of International Product & Technology. Grant’s expertise centers on large-scale web and data systems both inside and outside the cloud. He specializes in architecting those systems for scalability, economy, and efficiency during and after deployment. With a background in product management, Grant has been successful in integrating product managers into development teams while still servicing client and sales needs. His big data systems and analytics expertise has helped him deliver solutions in the ad technology, ad analytics, and weather technology spaces.
Josh Patchus Chief Data Scientist Cava Group
Josh Patchus is the Chief Data Scientist at Cava, a rapidly expanding fast casual restaurant and CPG brand focusing on fresh, better-for-you cuisine. Previously, Josh was a data scientist at consumer technology companies including Gamechanger, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and Livingsocial. Through building tools and custom benchmarks, Josh is breading a culture of data internally at Cava, focusing on making business practices and the guest experience smarter through unique and measured information. Externally, Josh hopes to enhance customization and education around smart choices for individual Cava customers through data-driven food technology. Josh earned both his Bachelors and Masters of Science degrees in Statistics from the George Washington University. Josh even uses spreadsheets to track all the coffee shops he visits and Liverpool matches he's watched…he hasn't missed one in eight years.
Gerhard Pichler Sales Director, North America Gantner Electronic GmbH
With over 20 years of experience in automation technology and degrees in engineering and management, Gerhard Pichler understands how to improve club performance through implementing NFC technology. As the President of Gantner Technologies Inc., the leading supplier of NFC System Solutions for the global Fitness Industry, he assists top Health Clubs throughout the world to streamline their operations, increase their bottom line, and deliver an enhanced member experience. Key clients who have benefited from GANTNER’s expertise include Fitness First, McFit, Fresh Fitness, Virgin Red, Midtown Athletic Clubs and many more. Mr. Pichler’s passion for Technology and the Fitness Industry guarantees that Gantner clients will invest is a System Solution that streamlines operations, deliver the return on investment and a unique member experience.
Sam Pollaro CEO Venga
Sam is the CEO of Venga, a Washington, DC-based technology company that uses big data to help restaurants and fitness companies better understand and engage with their guests. Before co-founding Venga, Sam was the founder of Petals for the People, a business that revolutionized the sale and distribution of fresh cut flowers. Previously, Sam worked in private equity as a Principal at Portfolio Logic Management and a Senior Analyst at Capital Guidance Corporation, and as an Analyst at the strategy consulting firm Dean & Company. Mr. Pollaro holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University.
Arty Rivera Sr. User Experience Designer 3Pillar Global
Arty is a Senior UX Designer at 3Pillar Global, where he helps clients understand their customers more deeply in order to create relevant, high-impact and successful products and experiences. He's worked directly with 3Pillar clients in the Fitness industry. He is also the Assistant Director of Design Thinking DC, which he spent 4 years growing into one of the largest professional meet-ups in Washington DC. DT:DC helps professionals from diverse backgrounds understand design thinking, and how to use it in their work and lives. He believes that the human-centered design mindset is critical to high-level decision making for organizations to successfully tackle increasingly complex human problems in the world today.
Philipp Roesch-Schlanderer CEO & Founder eGym
Philipp was an unsuccessful gym goer and decided to found eGym in 2010 with the vision to make the gym work for everyone. Prior, he studied Business and Technology Management at Columbia University in New York. eGym combines latest machine technology, powered by German engineering, with the advantages of connected mobile applications to deliver intuitive and effective workouts with more fun and data-driven member support. In only a few years of strong growth, eGym developed to one of the major players in the European fitness market, implementing its technology at leading fitness chains and franchises. Overall, eGym raised over $60 million in venture capital from large investors and is now entering the US market.
Todd Tweedy, whose professional background spans interactive and direct marketing, online media buying and planning, corporate and industry event planning, public policy, and brand management, is vice president of marketing for Motionsoft, a club software, payment processing, and back office support services firm for the health, wellness, and fitness industries. Todd is also the co-host of the Motionsoft Technology Summit, an annual industry event that addresses the business opportunities of technology in the fitness industry. Todd's core acquisition marketing focus is interpreting, managing, and acting on user generated content and search behavior to guide online content development, conversion optimization testing, social community engagement, and analytics. His model has been used by large and small fitness facilities to acquire and retain members. Recognized by Forrester Research as a leading instant messaging industry expert, Todd has been widely praised for his groundbreaking work in real-time communications. His study on the challenges businesses face in implementing customer-facing communication strategies was downloaded over 150,000 times. He's been a contributing author for several blogs, including SocialMediaToday.com, and is a frequent speaker on the topics of search optimization, localization, social media, and mobile marketing. Todd is a former US National amateur cyclist and spinning instructor. Todd is a graduate of University of Maryland, College Park. He's married with three tech-savvy kids.
Adam Williamowsky Director of Restaurants StreetSense
Adam is the Director of Restaurants at Streetsense, overseeing all aspects of restaurant and food & beverage consultancy and operations. Previously, Adam was instrumental in growing the BLT Restaurant Group from a three-restaurant group to a 22 restaurant worldwide empire. Adam played a pivotal role in the operations, marketing and public relations, real estate, and new concept development for BLT. Adam has also worked in management for Passion Food Hospitality and Morton’s the Steakhouse. Adam graduated with a degree in Business Administration from the University of Richmond where he was a four-year member of the Spiders football team. Adam is a member of the Court of Master Sommeliers.
Emmett Williams President MYZONE, Inc.
Emmett Williams has had the rare experience of being both operator and vendor in the commercial fitness industry, having built and owned 7 gyms on one side of the ledger, to having grown the international fitness marketing company, CFM on the other side of the ledger. Emmett for the last 6 years has allocated his time as co-founder + president of the wearable technolgy company, MYZONE. Emmett last year was awarded entry onto Fitness Australia’s Roll of Honor for his contribution and leadership to the commercial industry.