August 27-29, 2019 • Santa Clara Convention Center • Santa Clara, CA


The 2019 Advisory Board is comprised of 18 leading experts in all levels of embedded design. These accomplished engineers and executives rigorously review all call-for-speaker submissions, as well as ESC conference agendas, to help develop a curriculum of the highest quality and industry relevance. The Advisory Board maintains a strict standard for excellence, and its dedication and expertise help make ESC the nation’s premier conference for embedded systems engineers.

2019 ESC Advisory Board Members

CEO, Pifocal

Mak Agashe has worked in the technology industry both in the corporate world and small business. He is experienced in product engineering, large team building, operations and business management, and he has a broad and deep understanding of various technologies, products, and trends in the computer industry. He was a General Manager at Microsoft and is currently CEO of Pifocal, a cognitive computing company. Mak is also co-founder of Pramak, a technology consulting company. He has worked on operating systems, engineering tools, and cloud infrastructure services both as an individual contributor and leader, and he has built and led a 1,000-plus engineer Windows Serviceability team. With the help of his team, Mak developed OS updater and compression technology to distribute security updates, service packs, and hot-fixes to hundreds of millions of systems worldwide.

Director of Technology, The PTR Group LLC

Michael Anderson is currently director of technology for The PTR Group, Inc. With more than 40 years in the embedded and real-time computing industry, he works with a number of RTOS offerings on platforms ranging from 8-bit uPs to GPU-based supercomputers. His focus over the past decade has been primarily embedded Linux and Android on CPU architectures such as ARM, x86, MIPS, and Power. As an instructor and consultant, Mike is a regular speaker at the Embedded Systems Conference, the Embedded Linux Conference, Android Builder's Summit, as well as other Linux/Android-oriented conferences around the world.

President/Embedded Software Consultant, Beningo Embedded Group

Jacob Beningo is an embedded software consultant, advisor, and educator who currently works with clients in more than a dozen countries to dramatically transform their software, systems, and processes. He has published more than 400 articles on embedded software development techniques, is a sought-after speaker and technical trainer, and holds three degrees which include a Masters of Engineering from the University of Michigan. Feel free to contact him at [email protected] or at his website

VP Research, Senrio

M Carlton leads the research team at Senrio, focusing on connected device security. After graduating from MIT, she worked in software security before joining the embedded security team at Draper Laboratory. Her recent work at Senrio has included discovering patterns in IoT vulnerabilities and identifying new ways in which devices are attacked.

Founder, Questbotics Inc.

Linz Craig, founder of Questbotics Inc., is also an independent technologist, consultant, educator, and artist. His expertise includes technology education, logistical planning and execution for events and organization foundations, embedded systems, curriculum development, prototyping, project management and workshops for a wide variety of learners.

Senior Engineer, Intuitive Research and Technology

Charles Fulks leads the FPGA development group for Intuitive Research and Technology Corp. With more than 22 years in the embedded / high reliability industry, Charles works with a number of different technologies. However, his focus over the past decade is primarily Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGA) and embedded digital design. He has patented FPGA related technology. He holds a MSEE degree from the University of Central Florida and is a Senior Member of the IEEE. Charles has trained numerous design engineers, is a regular speaker at several industry conferences, and has presented on the topic of FPGA design internationally.

VP of Research & Development, TZero Labs

Eli Hughes is an engineer and teacher by day and a maker by night. His interests include all things relating to embedded systems, acoustics, physics, sensors, embedded firmware, FPGA design, high-speed PCB design, power electronics, systems engineering, and DSP.

Founder/Distinguished Engineer, Micrium/Silicon Labs

Jean Labrosse is a software architect at Silicon Labs. An RTOS expert who founded Micrium in 1999, he is a regular speaker and panelist at the Embedded Systems Conference in Boston and Silicon Valley, and other industry conferences. He is the author of three definitive books and many blogs and articles on embedded design. He holds BSEE and MSEE degrees from the University of Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada.

Senior Firmware Engineer, Pax Labs Inc.

Randy Leberknight is Senior Firmware Engineer at PAX Labs Inc. He has decades of experience with firmware and other low level software, often working closely with hardware and chip designers. He especially enjoys debugging subtle problems, and he has written several articles & presented several papers on the subject.

IoT Ecosystem, Texas Instruments

Nick Lethaby works in TI's Connected MCU Organization where his recent focus has been on IoT applications and sensor-to-cloud ecosystem solutions. He has more than 25 years of experience in embedded systems software, including Linux and real-time operating systems, for microcontrollers, microprocessors, and DSPs. He has a BS in Computer Science at the University of London.

President, Consultant, Trainer, Blue Ridge Advanced Design and Automation

Charles J. Lord, PE, is an embedded systems consultant and trainer with more than 35 years experience in system design and development in medical, military, and industrial applications. For the last 12 years, he has specialized in the integration of communication protocols into clients' products, including USB, Ethernet, and low-power wireless including ZigBee, 6LoWPAN, LoRa, and Thread. He has taught classes in these protocols for Freescale, Renesas, various universities, and conferences including ESC and ARM TechCon. He has been a design partner with Freescale, Microchip, and Renesas. He also teaches webinars for various clients on IoT and embedded systems topics. He earned his BS in electrical engineering from NC State University in Raleigh, NC and provides training and consulting services through his company, Blue Ridge Advanced Design, in Asheville, NC. He is a licensed professional engineer in NC and a senior member of the IEEE. In his volunteer work at the IEEE, he has served at many levels from local to regional to board committees. He is currently the chair of the IEEE NC Council and was general chair of IEEE SoutheastCon 1995 and 2017.


Clive "Max" Maxfield is the Editor-in-Chief for – the go-to site for users of electronic design tools. In addition to providing a suite of free design, verification, and analysis tools, EEWeb is the home for experienced and novice designers alike to share tips and to ask and answer questions. Max received his BSc in Control Engineering in 1980 from Sheffield Hallam University, England. He began his career as a designer of central processing units (CPUs) for mainframe computers. Over the years, Max has designed everything from silicon chips to circuit boards, and from brainwave amplifiers to steampunk "Display-O-Meters." He has also been at the forefront of Electronic Design Automation (EDA) for more than 30 years. Well-known throughout the embedded, electronics, semiconductor, and EDA industries, Max has presented papers at numerous technical conferences around the world, including North and South America, Europe, India, China, Korea, and Taiwan. Max has given keynote presentations at the PCB West conference in the USA and the FPGA Forum in Norway. He’s also been invited to give guest lectures at several universities in the US and at Oslo University in Norway. In 2001, Max “shared the stage” at a conference in Hawaii with former Speaker of the House, "Newt" Gingrich. Max is the author and/or co-author of a number of books, including Designus Maximus Unleashed (banned in Alabama), Bebop to the Boolean Boogie (An Unconventional Guide to Electronics), EDA: Where Electronics Begins, FPGAs: Instant Access, and How Computers Do Math.

Senior Technical Editor, Design News/UBM

Design News senior technical editor Chuck Murray has been writing about technology for 34 years. Since joining Design News in 1987, he has written extensively about automotive-, medical-, industrial- and energy-related topics, and has followed the re-emergence of electric cars since the late 1980s. He is a winner of the Jesse H. Neal Award for his 1993 story on implantable defibrillators, “The Making of a Medical Miracle." He is also the author of the book, The Supermen: The Story of Seymour Cray and the Technical Wizards Behind the Supercomputer, published in 1997 by John Wiley & Sons. Chuck’s technology coverage has also appeared in the Chicago Tribune business pages and in its Sunday magazine, as well as in Popular Science magazine. He holds a BS in engineering from the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Founder/CEO, Brain2Bot

Dr. Gunnar Newquist is a modern-day renaissance man. He is a trained concert pianist, a former professional extreme skier, and a motocross enthusiast, along with being a scientist and entrepreneur. Gunnar is the Founder/CEO of Brain2Bot Inc., a company building a new form of sentient artificial intelligence to give machines lifelike brains and empathy. He obtained a PhD in Cell & Molecular Neuroscience from the University of Nevada, Reno, and conducted a post-doctorate in learning and memory at ESPCI Paris-Tech. Currently, while running his company, Gunnar is a Visiting Professor at the University of St. Thomas where he teaches about Neuroscience and technology.

VP, Software Engineering Research and Development, Microcontroller Group, NXP

Rob Oshana is Vice President of Software Engineering, R&D for the Microcontroller and Microprocessor business line at NXP, responsible for software enablement, IoT connectivity, software middleware and security, operating systems, software services, and advanced technologies. He serves on multiple industry advisory boards and is a recognized international speaker. He has published numerous books and articles on software engineering and embedded systems. He is also an adjunct professor at the University of Texas and Southern Methodist University and is a Senior Member of IEEE. You can reach him at [email protected].

Senior Field Applications Engineer, IAR Systems America

Shawn Prestridge has served as IAR System's Senior Field Applications Engineer since 2008. He has worked in the software industry since 1993 and prior to joining IAR Systems he held the position of Embedded Hardware/Software Engineer with Texas Instruments as well as doing Embedded Development as the owner of Ministry of Software. Shawn’s research interests are primarily focused in Cryptology and he specializes in Large Number Theory, Quantum Cryptography, Elliptic Curve Cryptography, Number Field Sieve Computing and Communication Encryption. Shawn’s degree work includes a BS in Electrical Engineering, a BS in Mathematics, an MS in Electrical Engineering, an MS in Software Engineering and a PhD in Electrical Engineering specializing in Quantum Cryptography, all with Southern Methodist University in Dallas.

Director of Embedded Solutions, ARM

Chris Shore has worked at ARM for more than 18 years, currently as Director of Embedded Solutions in the Embedded & Automotive group. Before that, he spent 18 months in the Enterprise Marketing team, responsible for the technical content of Arm’s conferences, including TechCon and the Annual Partner Meeting. For 15 years, he was responsible for ARM’s customer training activity – delivering more than 200 training courses every year to ARM’s customers and end users all over the world. He also managed ARM’s Active Assist onsite services and the ARM Approved partner program. Chris is a regular speaker at conferences and industry events and has addressed audiences on ARM technology on every continent except Antarctica - opportunities there are limited but it is surely only a matter of time! He holds an MA in Computer Science from Cambridge University, is a Chartered Engineer, and a member of the Institute of Engineering and Technology (MIET).

Embedded Systems Consultant, Adiuvo Engineering & Training Ltd.

Adam Taylor is an expert in design and development of embedded systems and FPGA’s for several end applications. Throughout his career, Adam has used FPGA’s to implement a wide variety of solutions from RADAR to safety critical control systems, with interesting stops in image processing and cryptography along the way. Most recently he was the Chief Engineer of a Space Imaging company, being responsible for several game-changing projects. Adam is the author of numerous articles on electronic design and FPGA design including over 200 blogs on how to use the Zynq for Xilinx. Adam is Chartered Engineer and Fellow of the Institute of Engineering and Technology, he is also the owner of the engineering and consultancy company Adiuvo Engineering and Training.

ASIC, FPGA, SoC, IoT Development Consultant, Asic Research Inc.

Siva Uppalapati is a consultant/engineer with Asic Research Inc., where he designs and develops high-speed high-performance chips and FPGAs.

President, Aurium Technologies

Ken Wada has more than 25 years of experience architecting and designing high-tech products and systems, including the FASTRAK vehicle-sensing system for toll roads and bridges. He has successfully run an embedded design and engineering firm for 25+ years. His past clients include several major global corporations. His expertise includes industrial automation, biotechnology, and high-speed optical networks. Ken holds four patents in biotech, communications, and plastics rheology measurement. He is a senior contributor for EETIMES and EMBEDDED.COM. Ken is also the IIOT and Connectivity Track Chair for the Embedded Systems Conference: A World Wide United Business Media, (UBM) Event.

Senior Editor, Design News/UBM

Chris Wiltz is the Senior Editor of Design News, where he has spent the past five-plus years covering the emerging technology space, including VR/AR/XR, artificial intelligence, blockchain, and robotics. Prior to his role at Design News, he has more than 10 years of experience as a journalist covering technology, healthcare, and other industries.

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