Keynote Speakers



Michael KoonsMichael Koons

Vice President, World Wide Systems Engineering & Technology, Cisco


Mr. Michael Koons is the Vice President of Global Systems Engineering and Technology for the World Wide Sales organization at Cisco. He is responsible for ensuring the Systems Engineering (SE) community is actively leveraging technology to drive business outcomes for Cisco’s customer and partners. Mike is also responsible for the field engineering and technology strategy for all technical architectures within Cisco.

Since 1996 Mike has enjoyed multiple leadership roles in Cisco while supporting many different market segments in the field sales group. His 25+years of networking and telecommunication experience includes active involvement in several industry groups including USTA, ATIS and others. He has served on the ATIS Technology Council as the representative for Cisco focusing on common industry issues such as Network Optimization, Cloud Applications for Service Providers and CDN Federations. Mike has also served on the Colorado Governor’s Technology Board. Mike and his family currently reside in Wayne, Pennsylvania.


Rick Huijbregts

Rick Huijbregts

Managing Director, Americas, Industry Digitization and Solutions Canada VP Industry Transformation and Innovation, Cisco


As Managing Director Industry Digitization and Solutions for the Americas and VP Industry Transformation and Innovation in Canada, Dr. Rick Huijbregts is responsible for the industry transformation strategy for the Commercial business segment at Cisco. Dr. Huijbregts manages a team of industry subject matter experts who drive business relevant outcomes for Cisco customers. In this role, Dr. Huijbregts is also responsible for industry solutions acceleration and subsequent salesforce and partner enablement. This is a key priority for the Americas region as Cisco is growing to be increasingly relevant to the business decision makers in its existing and new customer base. For Cisco’s Canada operations, Dr. Huijbregts also oversees the Internet of Everything business development, city digitization program (Smart + Connected Communities), and innovation platform including leadership of one of eight global IoE Innovation Centers and ten University relationships and Research Chairs. In previous roles, Dr. Huijbregts was responsible for business development of Cisco’s real estate sector in the United States, Canada, and Emerging Markets regions. He joined Cisco in 2005 as a member of Cisco’s corporate real estate team. Prior to joining Cisco, Dr. Huijbregts was executive director of the Center for Design Informatics at the Harvard Design School. He was also co-founder and CEO of Edificium Inc. and consulted for international clients AEW Capital, McGraw-Hill Construction, Aukett Architects, and Capital Planning Technologies. In 2012 he was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal. In addition to his responsibilities at Cisco, Dr. Huijbregts is the Executive-in-Residence at George Brown College in Toronto for the Centre for Construction and Engineering Technology, a faculty member of the Harvard Graduate School of Design Executive Education and serves on several boards of Canadian academic institutions and not-for-profit organizations. Dr. Huijbregts holds a bachelor’s degree in construction management from the Tilburg Polytechnical University in the Netherlands, a master’s degree in real estate development and project management from Delft University in the Netherlands, and a doctorate from Harvard University with a specialization in real estate technology and investment management.


Bernadette WightmanBernadette Wightman

President, Cisco Canada


Bernadette Wightman is the President of Cisco Canada, responsible for overseeing all aspects of local operations, including sales, marketing, finance, distribution, and services. As a 15-year Cisco veteran, Bernadette has worked in the IT industry for more than 25 years. Her demonstrated sales leadership successes include managing organizations in developed and emerging markets.

Ms. Wightman was named Business Leader of the Year by Women into Science, Engineering & Construction (WISE); honoured as one of the UK’s most influential women in IT in 2011, 2012 and 2013, and named among the 500 most influential people in the UK in 2014 by specialist publishers Debretts.