Thanks to our amazing array of presenters for participating in IMMERSE and bringing their insights to the discussion.
Check out  Sessions page to see the wide range of thought-provoking topics that were shared.  And check back soon for links to livestreams from some of the sessions and copies of presentations.

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Elizabeth Baron

Virtual Reality and Advanced Visualization Technical Specialist
Ford Motor Company

SESSIONS: Insights from the Real World: Benefits of VR in the Design Process | Remarkable Virtuality at Ford: Realistic and Extremely Efficient Product Design

Elizabeth Baron is a Technical Specialist in Virtual Reality and Advanced Visualization at Ford Motor Company. She has been the driving force in the development and deployment of immersive vehicle verification technology at Ford Motor Company. She is the principle inventor of the Ford immersive Vehicle Environment (FiVE) process and technology. Elizabeth became the first…
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Will Adams

Integrated Construction Coordinator
M.A. Mortenson Construction

SESSION: Insights from the Real World: Benefits of VR in the Design Process

Will Adams has a master’s of architecture from the University of Minnesota, which is where he became interested in virtual…

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Boaz Ashkenazy

Founding Partner
Studio 216

SESSION: Telling the Story of Place using Mixed Reality (HoloLens)

Boaz Ashkenazy is the CSO and Founding Partner of Studio 216, a digital agency and full service virtual and mixed…

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Girish Balakrishnan

Virtual Production Lead Technical Director
Digital Domain

SESSION: Let’s Make VR Practical Again: Immersive Design through Virtual Production

Girish Balakrishnan is a Virtual Production Lead Technical Director with Digital Domain developing next-generation real-time visualization tools & methodologies that…

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Matt Bell

Co-founder, Chief Strategy Officer
Matterport

SESSION: Creating the modern way to buy or sell a home: A practical application of VR in Real Estate

Matt is passionate about using technology to merge the physical and digital worlds. He is the founder of Matterport, a…

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Joel Berg, DDS, MS

Professor and Dean
UW School of Dentistry

SESSION: The Many Ways VR and AR Changes Medicine and Healthcare

Dr. Berg is the Dean of the UW School of Dentistry. He previously held executive positions at Philips Oral Healthcare…

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Bob Berry

CEO
Envelop VR

SESSION: Welcome

A serial entrepreneur with a proven track record and skill set that spans game and real-time 3D engine design, software…

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Steve Biegun

Digital Design Manager
Pulse Design Group

SESSION: Insights from the Real World: Benefits of VR in the Design Process

Steve Biegun is the Digital Design Manager and head of virtual reality development at Pulse Design Group in Kansas City.…

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Ian Byrnes

Lead VR/AR Developer
Booz Allen Hamilton

SESSION: Providing a View Under the Sea to Improve Productivity and Worker Safety

VR and AR are increasingly being utilized across a wide range of use cases in healthcare, entertainment, education/training, government, etc.…

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Lisa Castaneda

CEO
Foundry 10

SESSION: Immersive technology in schools, what have we learned?

Lisa Castaneda is a co-founder and the CEO of foundry10, a not-for-profit research organization that studies learning.  She has a…

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Andrea Chang

Senior Sound Designer
Microsoft

SESSION: The 3 Dimensions of VR Audio

Andrea is currently working as a Senior Sound Designer at Microsoft on the Central Audio team supporting audio for all…

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Sandy Cioffi

Film and Video Artist, Educator
Director X Fair for SIFF 2016

SESSION: The Storytelling Animal

Sandy Cioffi is a Seattle-based film and media artist. She has produced and/or directed several films, including the critically acclaimed Sweet…

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Nirav S. Desai

Chief Technologist
Booz Allen Hamilton

SESSION: Beyond Pokemon Go: Building inclusive AR/VR ecosystems at UW CoMotion Labs

Nirav serves as Booz Allen’s Experiential/Immersive Technology practice lead, coordinating investments and selective client engagements across the nation in the…

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Kayla Didier

Operations Manager
VREAL

SESSION: Building a Strong Community Around Immersive Technology

Kayla is the organizer of Seattle’s VR Meetup and an active community member with Seattle VR Hackathon, among other groups.…

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Chris Donahue

Senior Director, Alliances
AMD

SESSION: The Emergence of the Next Killer App – The Advancement of VR Relies on It!

Chris has nearly 25 years of experience in the video game, hardware and software, Internet, and Cloud Gaming industries, and…

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Tom Furness, PhD

Grandfather of VR/AR
University of Washington

SESSION: Virtual World Society Presents…. TBA

Tom Furness is a pioneer in human interface technology and grandfather of virtual reality. He earned a BS degree in…

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Michael Gourlay, PhD

Principal Development Lead
Microsoft

SESSION: Exploiting Strengths and Avoiding Pitfalls in VR/ AR Design

Dr. Michael J. Gourlay works as a Principal Development Lead in the Environment Understanding group of Analog R&D, on augmented…

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Steve Hall

Managing Director
Vulcan Capital

SESSION: Shark Tank– IMMERSE Style

Steve Hall is Managing Director at Vulcan Capital where he heads up Vulcan’s venture capital investment efforts. Steve oversees an…

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Quinn Hawkins

Director of New Ventures
Redfin

SESSION: Creating the modern way to buy or sell a home: A practical application of VR in Real Estate

Quinn has eleven years of experience building consumer-facing products at Redfin and Microsoft. He was the product leader for the Redfin…

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Chris Hegstrom

Co-Founder
Audio VR.com

SESSION: The 3 Dimensions of VR Audio

Chris started his audio career doing live sound for Blue Man Group while studying Music Synthesis at Berklee College of…

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Holly Hirzel

Director of Production
Envelop VR

SESSION: How Any Developer Can Crash the Virtual Reality Party

Holly comes to Envelop from Microsoft’s HoloLens project, where her responsibilities included rapid prototyping for proof-of-concept pieces early on, but…

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Eva Hoerth

Developer Evangelist
VREAL

SESSIONS: Booz Allen Hamilton Presents “The Best of the 2016 Seattle VR Hackathon” | Building a Strong Community Around Immersive Technology

Eva is a Developer Evangelist at VREAL where she spends everyday building friendships with insanely awesome VR creators Eva organizes…

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JJ Hoesing

Principal Software Engineer
Envelop VR

SESSION: How Any Developer Can Crash the Virtual Reality Party

With more than 20 years of professional graphics and real-time simulation experience, J.J. understands the challenges that VR developers are…

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Brendan Hogan

Co-Owner
Impossible Acoustic

SESSION: The 3 Dimensions of VR Audio

Brendan J. Hogan is a Seattle based sound designer and co-owner of the audio post production company Impossible Acoustic. Brendan’s…

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Jesse Holt

Co-Founder
AudioVR.Com

SESSION: The 3 Dimensions of VR Audio

Jesse Holt has been part of the Casual Games industry since its inception. Jesse joined GameHouse in 1999 from Glenn…

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Todd Hooper

CEO and Founder
VREAL, Inc

SESSION: Shark Tank– IMMERSE Style

Todd is an experienced entrepreneur, having founded and operated multiple companies in the enterprise and entertainment markets. He started developing…

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Greg Howes

CEO
IDEABuilder

SESSION: Insights from the Real World: Benefits of VR in the Design Process

Earth’s Geekiest Builder.   Greg Howes is the CEO of IDEAbuilder, a technology-driven construction company integrating immersive technologies, cloud-based design…

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Stephanie Hurlburt

Owner & Graphics Engineer
Binomial

SESSION: Beyond Pokemon Go: Building inclusive AR/VR ecosystems at UW CoMotion Labs

Stephanie is making Basis, a texture compressor meant for VR & beyond, at Binomial. She loves all things VR, C++,…

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Vikram Jandhyala, PhD

Vice President for Innovation Strategy
University of Washington, CoMotion

SESSION: Beyond Pokemon Go: Building inclusive AR/VR ecosystems at UW CoMotion Labs

Vikram Jandhyala is Vice President for Innovation Strategy at the University of Washington. He is Executive Director of CoMotion, UW’s…

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Forest Key

CEO and Founder
Pixvana

SESSION: Challenges and Solutions for Creating and Distributing VR Video Content

Forest is the CEO and founder of Pixvana, a Seattle-based software startup building a VR/AR video processing and delivery platform…

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Sonya Kim, MD, MBA

CEO & Founder
One Caring Team

SESSION: Transforming Complex Healthcare Challenges with Virtual Reality

Dr. Kim, a Board-certified Emergency Physician and an experienced entrepreneur, earned her MD from SUNY Stony Brook and her joint…

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Lacey Leavitt

Joint CEO
Mechanical Dreams VR

SESSION: Beyond Pokemon Go: Building inclusive AR/VR ecosystems at UW CoMotion Labs

LACEY LEAVITT’s credits as a film producer include Megan Griffiths’ The Off Hours (Sundance Film Festival) and Lucky Them (Toronto…

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Matt McIlwain

Managing Director
Madrona Venture Group

SESSION: Beyond Pokemon Go: Building inclusive AR/VR ecosystems at UW CoMotion Labs

Matt focuses on a broad range of software-driven companies and serves on the boards of several Madrona portfolio companies. He…

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Aaron McLeran

Sr Audio Programmer
Epic Games

SESSION: The 3 Dimensions of VR Audio

Aaron’s first taste of audio programming was writing computer music in CSound while in graduate school at University of Notre Dame…

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Brian Mogen

Co-founder
MultiModal Health

SESSION: Beyond Pokemon Go: Building inclusive AR/VR ecosystems at UW CoMotion Labs

Brian Mogen is the co-founder of MultiModal Health, a company dedicated to changing the way rehabilitation service is measured and…

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Pete Moss

VR Dude and Lead Engineer
Unity

SESSION: VR Today: Eyes Wide Open

Pete Moss joined Unity in Seattle as a Field Engineer in the Simulation/Visualization division, and is now the VRDude working…

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Marty O’Donnell

Owner
Highwire Games

SESSION: The 3 Dimensions of VR Audio

Marty O’Donnell earned his Masters of Music Degree in Composition with honors from USC. He then founded the Chicago-based commercial…

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Eric Olson

Advisor and Mentor
Free Range Consulting

SESSION: A Look Inside VR/AR Innovation Efforts at Leading Northwest Companies

I am a strategic thought leader, visionary executive, and passionate customer-centric advocate with 15+ years of Fortune 200 retail experience…

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Anthony Perez


SESSION: A Look Inside VR/AR Innovation Efforts at Leading Northwest Companies

Anthony is an architect and recognized concept designer and leader, adept in focusing creative teams and iconic global brands to…

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Lisa Picard

Executive Vice President
Skanska

SESSION: Telling the Story of Place using Mixed Reality (HoloLens)

Lisa Picard is the Executive Vice President and Regional Manager of Skanska Commercial Development USA and is responsible for the…

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Tim Porter

Managing Director
Madrona Venture Group

SESSION: A Look Inside VR/AR Innovation Efforts at Leading Northwest Companies

Tim is focused on investing in B2B software companies in the Pacific Northwest. He currently is particularly interested in the…

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Daniel W. Rasmus

Analyst & Futurist
Serious Insights

SESSION: 10 Breakthroughs That will Take VR from Great to Awesome

Daniel W. Rasmus, is the Founder and Principal Analyst at Serious Insights. Rasmus uses scenarios to analyze uncertainties in society,…

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Aaron Rhodes

Senior Producer
Pixvana

SESSION: Challenges and Solutions for Creating and Distributing VR Video Content

Aaron is Pixvana’s in-house filmmaker and senior producer. A veteran of the post-production world, he has worked as a director,…

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Bill Richter

Venture Partner
Madrona Venture Group

SESSION: Shark Tank– IMMERSE Style

Bill brings nearly 20 years of leadership experience in the technology industry to his role at Madrona. Bill transitioned to…

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John SanGiovanni

Co-Founder, CEO
Visual Vocal

SESSION: Using Virtual Reality as a Tool for Enhanced Productivity and Communication

John SanGiovanni has more than two decades of experience as an entrepreneur, strategist, and inventor. John is currently the cofounder and…

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Brian Shuck, PE

Project Engineer
CH2M

SESSION: Insights from the Real World: Benefits of VR in the Design Process

Brian Shuck is a water/wastewater engineer with 16 years of experience, passionate about applying virtual reality (VR), augmented reality, and…

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Sandy Sharma

Executive Chairman
Indigo Slate

SESSION: A Look Inside VR/AR Innovation Efforts at Leading Northwest Companies

Sandy Sharma is a serial entrepreneur, startup advisor and active investor. Sandy is the co-founder and partner of 9Mile Labs,…

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S. Somasegar

Venture Partner
Madrona Venture Group

SESSION: Sizing the Opportunity for the Immersive Technology Industry

Soma joined Madrona in 2015 after nearly twenty-seven years at Microsoft Corporation, where he most recently was Corporate Vice President…

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Chanel Summers

Co-founder
Syndicate 17

SESSION: The 3 Dimensions of VR Audio

A pioneer in the field of interactive audio, Chanel Summers has been a respected game producer and designer, Microsoft’s first…

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Richard Tapalaga

Senior Investment Manager
Qualcomm Ventures

SESSION: Shark Tank– IMMERSE Style

Richard is a Senior Investment Manager for Qualcomm Ventures and is responsible for overseeing investments in the augmented reality /…

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Joseph Todd

CIO
City of Tukwila

SESSION: A Look Inside VR/AR Innovation Efforts at Leading Northwest Companies

Joseph Todd has an extensive background  as a technology practitioner and leader.  His backgrounds spans aircraft and technology research and development,…