Sunday, January 10

Location:  Celebrity Ballrooom 3

8:30 - 9:30


Alicia Abella, Ph.D.

Assistant Vice President

Cloud Technologies and Services Research

AT&T Labs


Dr. Abella – AVP, Cloud Technologies and Services Research Organization - With 20 years of research experience, Dr. Abella has held positions that allow her to demonstrate her skills in a broad research spectrum which have unfolded into her organization’s current responsibilities which include research in cloud computing, software-defined storage, human-computer interaction, mobile services, and Internet of Things.


In 2013, Dr. Abella received Columbia University’s Medal of Excellence, an award given each year to an alumnus or alumna, under 45 years of age, whose record in scholarship, public service, or professional life is outstanding. This is the first time since 1929 --when the award was first given-- that Columbia has awarded the medal to an engineer. In 2011, she was selected by President Obama to be on his Presidential Advisory Commission for Educational Excellence for Hispanics. Also in 2011, she was inducted into the prestigious WITI (Women in Technology International) Hall of Fame.


Besides her technical contributions, Dr. Abella has been a strong advocate in fostering the development of minorities and women in science and engineering. She received her B.S. in Computer Science from NYU and her M.S. and Ph.D. in Computer Science from Columbia University.


Monday, January 11

Location:  Celebrity Ballroom 3

8:30 - 9:30


Andrew Francis Laine

Professor of Biomedical Engineering 

Chair, Department of Biomedical Engineering

Columbia University 


Laine, who received his D.Sc. degree from Washington University in computer science, teaches courses on Medical Image Analysis to graduate students and Wavelet Applications in Medicine to undergraduate students. He serves as vice president of publications for IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBS), the largest professional society in the field, and is chair of the Technical Committee on Biomedical Imaging and Image Processing for IEEE EMBS.


Laine holds two patents related to 3-D processing of ultrasound, has authored over 300 peer-reviewed papers, and has graduated over 20 doctoral students in the field of medical image analysis. He is a fellow of the IEEE and fellow of the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering.


B.S., Cornell, 1977; M.S., University of Connecticut, 1980; M.S., Washington University (St. Louis), 1983; D.Sc., Washington University, 1989


Monday, January 11

Location:   Celebrity Ballroom 3

19:30 - 20:30


Marco Ruffini, Ph.D.

Assistant professor on optical network architectures,

CONNECT telecommunicaitons research centre,

The University of Dublin, Trinity College, Ireland.


Marco Ruffini received his M.Eng. in telecommunications in 2002 from Polytechnic University of Marche (Italy), and after working for Philips R&D in Germany he joined Trinity College Dublin (TCD) in 2005, where he received his Ph.D. in 2007. Since 2010 he’s assistant professor (tenured 2014) at TCD. He is part of the CTVR/CONNECT telecommunications research centre and a technical coordinator of the FP7 DISCUS project and holder of a personal Science Foundation Ireland Principal Investigator award. He has authored more than 60 publications and 10 patents, and raised over €3.5M in research funds. His research area is on fibre access architectures for next generation converged networks and he is currently working on fixed/mobile convergence, open access Software Defined Networks and next generation optical intra and inter datacenter networking.