Ambassador and Speakers Bureau

CABA receives numerous requests each year in regards to recommending CABA members that would be willing to speak at events on various topics regarding home and building automation.

The Continental Automated Buildings Association (CABA) has complied a member database of leading industry professionals, willing to speak at global events. CABA endorses over 100 global events for members each year and that number continues to grow. 

The CABA Ambassador and Speakers Bureau specializes bringing innovators and leaders to events that are focused on enhancing integrated and intelligent home and building technologies and our roster will continue to grow. 

If you are interested in having a speaker from the CABA Ambassador and Speakers Bureau participate at your event, please contact Andrew Glennie, CABA's Member Services Coordinator at 613.686.1814 x226 or

Bob Allan who is Global Business Development Manager, Intelligent Buildings and Strategic Alliances at Siemon, supports global sales to educate current and potential customers on intelligent buildings and the use of a single converged, IP-based structured cabling system to connect and integrate multiple building systems to achieve capital and operational savings. He has over 15 years in the IT industry helping customers optimize and integrate their buildings.

Michael Arny founded Leonardo Academy in 1997 and leads Leonardo Academy's sustainability programs and consulting practice. Michael has worked on energy, environmental issues, and sustainability throughout his entire career. After earning a BS and MS in mechanical engineering, as well as a BA in Psychology and Russian language at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Michael worked for the Wisconsin Public Service Commission for 14 years. He was co-chair of the State of Wisconsin committee that developed the State of Wisconsin Greenhouse Gas emissions inventory, emission reduction cost analysis, and the economic benefits analysis for emission reductions.

Debra Becker is the Connected Building Leader for Honeywell Building Solutions (HBS). Debra’s primary responsibility is to lead the strategic direction, business development, and sales for connected buildings. Previously, she was the Americas Construction Industry Leader and Americas Director of Global Business Operations for HBS where she led productivity and growth initiatives focused on lean process and sustainability solutions. Debra is faculty at the University of Minnesota, teaching “Sustainability for Construction Managers”. She serves on the board of the Continental Automated Buildings Association (CABA) and is Chair of the Intelligent Buildings Council. Prior to Honeywell, Debra was Vice President, Special Projects at Adolfson & Peterson Construction where she led national initiatives, transitioning customers from construction to operations and maintenance. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Design and a Master’s degree in Architecture from the University of Minnesota. Debra is a LEED Accredited Professional, Associate member of the American Institute of Architects, and prior Board Member of WomenVenture in Minnesota.

Stephen Brown, Director, Innovation at CSA Group, has over 30 years of experience in the Technologies industry. Throughout that period, he has been responsible for standards development, product planning and management, regulatory affairs, international business development, and strategic planning.  Stephen joined CSA Group in 2002 and was responsible for over 2,500 codes and standards within the Electrotechnical sector.  In 2012, Stephen was appointed to a new role at CSA Group with a global mandate regarding emerging technologies and their “game changing” effects on safety, certification, standards, and international applicability for specific markets. This area includes Intelligent Buildings, Connected Homes and Interoperability, Nanotechnologies, Energy Storage, Alternative Energy and connected Vehicles, infrastructure, and cybersecurity. In 2016, Stephen was appointed as Director, Innovation. 

James Brehm is Founder & Chief Technology Evangelist at James Brehm & Associates. An independent advisor and technology evangelist, Brehm is one of the leading voices on the state of the IoT and M2M market.

  Matt Cable is the manager of customer technology and innovation for Union Gas Limited. In his role, he leads a group with a mandate to develop new technologies, innovations and energy solutions that will help the company better serve its customers and contribute to Ontario’s climate change goals. Matt uses his skills with energy modeling, measurement and verification, thermal scanning and building performance management to guide teams to low-energy solutions. He has a unique ability to explain complex technical concepts to design teams and facilitate the optimization of new and existing buildings.

  Andres Carvallo is the founder and CEO of CMG, a strategy consulting and advisory company focus on enabling Smart Cities, Smart Utilities, and Smart Buildings.  Outside of CMG, Mr. Carvallo is a Board Director at IMS, Board Director at Gridmates, Board Advisor at Smart Electric Power Association, Board Advisor at Texas State University Ingram School of Engineering, and Board Advisor at The University of Kansas Energy Council.

  Cees Links is a pioneer of the wireless data industry. He is the founder and CEO of GreenPeak Technologies, a Smart Home and IoT radio communications semi-conductor company, now part of Qorvo. Earlier in his career Cees worked for NCR, AT&T and Lucent Technologies. Under his responsibility, the first wireless LANs were developed for PCs and notebooks, that ultimately became household Wi-Fi technology integrated into computers, smart phones and connected smart devices. He also pioneered the development of access points, home networking routers, and hotspot base-stations. He was involved in the establishment of the IEEE 802.11 standardization committee and the Wi-Fi Alliance. He was also instrumental in establishing the IEEE 802.15 standardization committee that become the basis for Zigbee sense and control networking.

Benjamin Freas is a research analyst contributing to Navigant Research’s Smart Buildings program, with a focus on building automation systems and emerging building technologies. His experience includes both market research and technical expertise in the design and construction of buildings.

Robin Ford is a co-founder and Vice President of Business Development at Global Cache, a leading manufacturer of IP-enabling and connectivity products for homes and business. She has more than 25 years experience in high-tech sales, marketing and business development involving enterprise software, display technologies, residential control, and automation and control in businesses and schools.

Noah Goldstein is a research director leading Navigant Research’s Smart Buildings program, with a focus on energy efficiency, building energy management, and applied sustainability. He holds a BA in biology from the University of California, Santa Cruz, and an MA and PhD in geography from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Helen Heneveld, a respected industry expert, founded Bedrock Learning, a training solutions company with 80+ online hours teaching the industry and technology. Bedrock received the 2016 CTA Mark of Excellence Award for Best Education or Support Program. Her early entry in 1989 into home automation installation, along with years delivering industry training, she is a valuable member of the Board of Directors of CTA, Consumer Technology Association, Tech Home Division, the Connected Home Council, CABA, and in the past, the CEDIA Board of Directors. Often in demand, she speaks and consults worldwide. Heneveld co-authored DHTI+ Home Technology Integrator All-In-One Exam Guide by McGraw-Hill, has written numerous publications, holds an MBA from the University of Michigan, and is CEDIA Installer 1 Certified and CEA-CompTIA DHTI+ Certified.

Fabrice Hoerner is part of Qualcomm’s Technical Marketing team where he focuses on the Internet of Everything: advanced communication platforms, middleware and applications that enable enriched, real-time interactions between people and their environment (for example homes, cars or cities). Hoerner received an MBA from the University of Chicago, Booth School of Business, with a concentration in Strategic Management and Economics and holds a Master’s Degree from Ecole Superieure d’Electricite (Supelec) with a concentration in Information Systems and Networks.

Dr. Patrick Hogan serves in a liaison role with Honeywell's Automated Control Solutions group to integrate gas detection instrumentation equipment with security, surveillance and other critical automated building systems. Dr. Hogan is active conference speaker and author on many safety engineering topics, including the role of gas detection in reducing building energy consumption through on-demand use of ventilation systems and integrating safety equipment through optimized use of controller systems and digital communication protocols such as BACnet.

David Katz is President & CEO at Sustainable Resources Management. He specializes in energy and environmental consulting, climate change action plans, sustainable development and resource management, building intelligence rating, life cycle costing and risk mitigation services.

Tom Kelly joined Panduit in 1998 and has worked in research and development, product design, engineering management, product line management. Currently, he is the director of Enterprise business development focusing on providing an end to end solutions for customer’s infrastructure needs across a common IP copper network. He is currently responsible for Enterprise business strategy, execution and thought leadership. He has participated in, presented to and authored content for leading industry standards and trade associations to establish and communicate market trends across the structured cabling industry.

Mike Krell is Head of IoT Strategy at James Brehm & Associates. Krell provides research, analysis, and go-to-market strategies for companies looking to deliver successful industrial and consumer IoT solutions.

Harry Kohal is a life-time member and past president of the Wisconsin Association of Computer Crime Investigators. He has been in IT and IT consulting for over 35 years, starting in the US Air Force. Harry joined Eagle Technology, Inc. in June of 2006 and is currently Vice President of Business Development. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business from Marian University and a Master of Liberal Studies from the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee.

Robert Lane is a consummate entrepreneur with over 40 years experience involved with senior management roles involving electrical and electronic manufacturing and product development. He has international experience in telecommunications, computers and mining activities.  Past positions included VP, International at NORTEL and CEO at Commodore Business Machines. He currently serves on many board of directors and advises numerous start-up companies.

Christopher Larry is Director of Energy Engineering at exp.  He has spent more than 25 years working to minimize the building industry's energy and environmental footprint through refining building design, building modelling,performance optimization and intelligent controls. He has held numerous positions within the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) and is a past president of the Association of Energy Engineers (AEE).

Matt Mahar is Vice President of Consumer Experience and Design at Vivint Smart Home where he oversees all software and hardware design for the company’s smart home products. His passion for delivering superior customer experiences has led Vivint to deliver the industry’s top-rated smart home app, as well as multiple award-winning product designs. Matt is sought out for his insights on the human element of technology. He graduated from Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada with a degree in Political Science and a minor in Economics.

JaQuar McMickle is President and Co-founder of InfinityCo LLC and co-developer of IIRA. InfinityCo is an Innovation Consulting Firm dedicated to bridging the gap to the future by solving tomorrow’s issues today with innovative technologies, concepts, and ideas. His firm's focuses on on improving operational efficiency for any business while providing sustainable solutions by analyzing market trends in tangent with technological advancements.

  Deb Noller is a dynamic leader who brings more than 20 years of experience in technology, sustainability and commercial real estate to her role as CEO and co-founder of Switch Automation, a building performance optimization software as a service (SaaS) platform. She helps large enterprises leverage technology for more efficient business operations, resulting in hundreds of thousands of dollars in cost savings for Fortune 100 companies.  

Nikiforos Panorios is leading the Intelligent Buildings Europe, a platform which focuses on the importance of buildings in our everyday life and facilitates business and networking opportunities. He has strong commercial experience, especially in the events industry. He is a ferocious networker, fan of technology and his motto is: you can achieve everything with a positive mind.

Brian Patterson is the Chairman of the EMerge Alliance, a 501c non-profit corporation established to create application standards that promote the rapid adoption of safe, low voltage DC power distribution and use in commercial buildings including data centers. His extensive technical and work history in electronics, fiber optics and building technologies has resulted in his holding many patents in those fields. He is also the General Manger of Business Development for the Building Products Division of Armstrong World Industries, a founder of the Alliance, and is an active member of the IEEE.

John Petze is a partner at SkyFoundry, the developers of SkySpark™, an analytics platform for building, energy and equipment data. John has over 30 years of experience in building automation, energy management and M2M/IoT, having served in senior level positions for manufacturers of hardware and software products including: President & CEO of Tridium, VP Product Development for Andover Controls, and Global Director of Sales for Cisco Systems Smart and Connected Buildings group and is a member of the Association of Energy Engineers. He is the Executive Director of, an open source, 501C trade association focusing on standards and technology to make device data self-describing to enable software applications to automatically consume, interpret, analyze and present data from devices and equipment systems thereby unlocking the value of the data. 

Randy Stearns was the Founder and President of Engineered Environments, one of the nation’s largest and best reputed custom residential systems integration firms. He subsequently led an industry consolidation that merged Engineered Environments with six other industry leaders to form VIA International, Inc. Through 2014, Randy acted as CEO of VIA which operates in 8 western states with 350 employees and $70M+ in revenues. Randy has been an active volunteer for CEDIA, the industry’s trade association, and served on the CEDIA Board of Directors of for eight years including a term as Chairman. Randy has his undergraduate degree from Dartmouth College and an MBA from the University of Southern California.

Neil Strother is a senior analyst contributing to Navigant Research’s Smart Grid practice, with a focus on smart metering technologies and related business practices. Strother has an extensive background in market intelligence focused on emerging technologies. Strother holds an MS from Northwestern University and a BA from Whitman College.

Casey Talon is a senior research analyst with Navigant Research, contributing to the Building Innovations program. With a background in economics, environmental science, and policy, she has deep experience as an analyst and consultant in the building and construction sector.

Dr. Kenneth Wacks has been a pioneer in establishing the home systems industry and a management advisor since 1985 to clients worldwide, ranging from startups to large companies. His business focus includes home and building systems, energy management, and digital entertainment networks. Corporate managers depend on Dr. Wacks for clear and practical advice regarding product development and market positioning. Dr. Wacks received his Ph.D. from MIT as a Hertz Fellow and studied at the MIT Sloan School of Management.

Mike Welch has led the Smart IoT Products and Solutions division at Control Network Solutions Ltd. With the firm's acquisition of Fulham Co., Inc., a world-leader in smart IoT product and solutions for converged building and lighting controls, he has now become responsible for supporting the firm's more than 40 elitedali resellers worldwide.  He also shapes the company’s clever and smart lighting strategy.

Eric Woods is a research director leading Navigant Research’s coverage of smart cities. In this role he brings together his research experience in smart grids, smart water networks, smart transport, and smart buildings. He has over 20 years of experience as an analyst and consultant on new technology trends including in-depth research in the areas of IT infrastructure, data analytics, knowledge management, public sector IT, and cleantech innovation. Woods holds an MSc in information systems from the University of Brighton and a Ph.D. in English literature, an MA in critical theory, and a BA in English from the University of Sussex.

Omar Yakobi is an Account Executive at Convergint Technologies who is responsible for handling the firm's largest accounts ranging from municipalities to big box retail to commercial office towers. He has had a key role in projects involving IKEA and Allstate. He holds a Bachelor of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering from Carleton University.

Ron Zimmer is President & CEO of the Continental Automated Buildings Association. CABA is a not-for-profit industry association dedicated to the advancement of intelligent home and intelligent building technologies. Mr. Zimmer joined CABA in 1997 working with industry leaders who promote integrated systems and home/building automation throughout the world.