Roanoke Conference Panelists

Panelists (Partial listing)

PETER AIKEN Peter is acknowledged to be a top data management (DM) authority. As a practicing data consultant, author and researcher, he has been actively performing and studying DM for more than 30 years. His expertise has been sought by some of the world's most important organizations and his achievements have been recognized internationally.  He has held leadership positions and consulted with more than 75 organizations in 21 countries across numerous industries, including defense, banking, healthcare, telecommunications and manufacturing. Peter is the founding director of Data Blueprint, a consulting firm that helps organizations leverage data for competitive advantage and operational efficiencies.  He is also associate professor of information systems at Virginia Commonwealth University and past president of the International Data Management Association.

STAN BARNHILL Stan is a partner at the Roanoke law firm Woods Rogers P.L.C., where he has specialized in commercial litigation, First Amendment, FOIA and defamation law, construction law and professional malpractice defense. He has been listed in Best Lawyers in America for his First Amendment law practice, among others, and has been listed in Virginia Business magazine's "Legal Elite" for construction law. He olds undergraduate and graduate degrees from Virginia Tech, and his law degree is from Washington & Lee.

J. ALBERT BOWDEN II Albert is a freelance front-end Web developer working to make civic data open and accessible for all citizens. An outspoken champion of openness, transparency and accessibility, he is an active supporter of the Sunlight Foundation, OpenAddresses and OpenVA, Mozilla, OKFN, and the EFF. Recently, he served as a Microsoft IE UserAgent, promoting Web Platform Standards to the online community. In between submitting FOIA requests and parsing government data locked in pdfs, Albert relaxes in his Virginia Beach apartment with his girlfriend and dog, who keep him around for his collection of 90s R&B albums and belly rubs (respectively). He holds a B.A. in Computer Information Systems from James Madison University.

ZACH CRIZER Zach is a reporter at The Roanoke Times covering the stories of Franklin County, which has allowed him to go to church on a boat and visit Bean Dawg mountain. In recent months, he has led the paper’s reporting on the questionable dealings of the Virginia Tobacco Indemnification and Community Revitalization Commission. He is still very disappointed he hasn’t written a story about moonshine. Zach is a Virginia Tech graduate who edited the student paper there.

MARIA EVERETT Maria is the executive director of the Virginia Freedom of Information Advisory Council, a legislative agency, created in July 2000. Since its inception, the FOIA Council has rendered more than 10,000 informal opinions and more than 200 written opinions on the application/interpretation of the Freedom of Information Act.   Ms. Everett, a senior attorney with the Division of Legislative Services, also serves as counsel to the House Committee on General Laws, a position she has held since 1990. She earned a B.S. degree from Virginia Tech and a J.D. degree from the George Mason University School of Law.

WILLIAM FRALIN William is the current president and CEO of Medical Facilities of America, based in Roanoke. He practiced law for more than 20 years prior to that, and served as a member of the Virginia House of Delegates from 2004 to 2010. He has served on multiple local and state boards and as commissioner of the Virginia Port Authority. He currently serves on the Virginia Health Reform Initiative Advisory Council and the Commonwealth Transportation Board. William is a graduate of the University of Virginia and the T.C. Williams School of Law at the University of Richmond.

RANDY HILL Currently Randy works for the National Science Foundation as a Senior Adviser to the Chief Technology Officer where he is involved in virtual panel and face to face panel analysis thru the Virtual Panel Task Force. Also within this activity, Randy explores opportunities of using new virtual technologies to improve the effectiveness of virtual panels. Randy is involved in the Code for NOVA brigade as one of the co-captains where he promotes the collection, correlation and development of data that can be used on handheld devices and the gathering of any available data for the development of useful to the local counties. Some of his data collaborations ideas include the “Patient Project” and the “Protocol Project”.

CHRIS PIPER Nearly all of Chris' career has been spent in the area of ethics. In 2003, after successfully managing a federal trade association's PAC, he took over as campaign finance manager for the Virginia State Board of Elections, where he oversaw the implementation of Virginia's Campaign Finance Disclosure Act. Chris joined international law firm, Skadden, Arps in 2008 as a political compliance consultant where he advised the firm's clients on how to comply with lobbying, conflict of interests, and campaign finance compliance in all 50 states, Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico and the federal government. He rejoined the Virginia State Board of Elections in 2011 as manager of election services, where he oversaw campaign finance, voter registration, and ballot access processes. He is now the executive director of the recently created Virginia Ethics and Conflict of Interests Advisory Council. Chris is a long-distance runner with a few marathons under his belt, but he's most proud of his two children, Danny (11) and Hanna (8).

LISA SEDLAK Lisa is the communications specialist for the Town of Blacksburg. She administers the town’s social media channels, email alerts and customer service portals. Lisa is a graduate of Virginia Tech with a degree in Communication Studies. She worked at WSLS-TV in Roanoke and has a passion for open government.

BEN SCHOENFELD Ben is a computer engineer and Code for Hampton Roads volunteer from Portsmouth. He holds a BS in Computer Engineering from Virginia Tech and has nine years of industry experience. By day, Ben works as a senior software engineer at Port Solution Integrators and, building hardware and software solutions for the intermodal transportation industry. Nights and weekends he's a civic hacker who builds free and open-source apps for his community. Ben has contributed to, a mobile app that makes it easy to get public health reports for restaurants near you, and, an API and mobile app for Hampton Roads Transit that puts real-time arrival, departure and route data into riders’ hands. When he's not programming, Ben enjoys playing music with his co-workers and spending time with his wife and his dog.

EWAN SIMPSON In his position as territory manager for Socrata, Ewan supports State and Local government data initiatives from Newark, NJ to Hampton, VA, helping them unlock the value of their data.   Through his work with municipal government and civic technology groups Ewan is creating a network of open data users in the metro area and across the Mid-Atlantic.  Given his prior experience with place-based human service initiatives Ewan works to improve community connectivity and better data sharing.

JEFF SOUTH Jeff is an associate professor and director of undergraduate studies in the Robertson School of Media and Culture at Virginia Commonwealth University. Before joining the faculty in 1997, he had been a reporter and editor for 20 years on newspapers in Texas, Arizona and Virginia. South teaches data journalism, political reporting and other courses at VCU. He received a Fulbright fellowship to teach journalism in China in 2014 and a Knight International Press Fellowship to train journalists in Ukraine in 2007. South has conducted workshops for the Society of Professional Journalists, the Virginia Press Association and other groups.