Speaker biographies

Keynote speakers

Joseph Turow is Robert Lewis Shayon Professor of Communication at the Annenberg School for Communication. Turow is an elected Fellow of the International Communication Association and was presented with a Distinguished Scholar Award by the National Communication Association. A 2005 New York Times Magazine article referred to Turow as "probably the reigning academic expert on media fragmentation." In 2010, the New York Times called him "the ranking wise man on some thorny new-media and marketing topics." In 2012, the TRUSTe internet privacy-management organization designated him a "privacy pioneer" for his research and writing on marketing and digital-privacy. His most recent books are The Aisles Have Eyes: How Retailers Track Your Shopping, Strip Your Privacy, and Define Your Power (Yale, 2017) and Media Today: Mass Communication in a Converging World (Routledge, Fall 2016; Serbian edition in two volumes, 2015).

Nick Curcuru has over 20 years of experience implementing and managing large scale advanced analytics projects across the world for companies such as The Walt Disney Company, Capital One, The Home Depot, Burlington Northern Railroad, Merrill Lynch and The General Electric Company.  He helps drive strategic decisions through the use of data and analytics.  He helps companies uncover opportunities to increase revenue and grow profit margins.  He is currently the Vice President of Big Data Practice at MasterCard.

University welcome

M. Roy Wilson became president of Wayne State University in August 2013. Previous leadership positions include deputy director for strategic scientific planning and program coordination at the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities of the National Institutes of Health, dean of the School of Medicine at Creighton University, president of Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, and chancellor of University of Colorado Denver/Anschutz Medical Campus. As an ophthalmologist, his research focused on glaucoma and blindness in populations from the Caribbean to West Africa. In 2003, President Wilson was elected as a lifetime member of the National Academy of Medicine. He received his undergraduate degree from Allegheny College, an M.S. in epidemiology from UCLA, and an M.D. from Harvard Medical School.

Stephen M. Lanier was appointed as professor of Pharmacology and vice president for Research at Wayne State University on June 16, 2014.  Lanier has worked to establish significant partnerships with the City of Detroit and to establish programs that connect with the challenges facing the city of Detroit as we work together on one of the most special initiatives in the world. SML has launched a broad Integrative Biosciences Initiative dedicated to research, discovery, education, training and knowledge application across a range of biomedical challenges. He received his doctorate in pharmacology from the University of Tennessee Center for Health Sciences and received postdoctoral training in the Cardiac Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School.

Presenters and panelists

Michael J. Barnes, associate professor, serves as information privacy officer for Computing and Information Technology at Wayne State and as the artistic director of the Maggie Allesee Department of Theatre and Dance.  As the university's chief privacy officer, Barnes leads efforts to safeguard private, digitally accessible information, ensures compliance with privacy laws and regulations and develops campus-wide privacy awareness initiatives. Barnes also has served on the Academic Senate's Facilities, Support Services and Technology Committee. He is the voice and speech specialist for Hilberry Rep and the Undergraduate acting program. In addition, he is on the faculty of the Broadway Theatre Project--with Artistic Director, Ben Vereen, and has served on the faculties of the University of Miami and Temple University, and taught at UC-Irvine, the University of Delaware, and the University of Central Oklahoma.

Sorin Draghici is the associate dean for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, and director, James and Patricia Anderson Engineering Ventures Institute in the College of Engineering at Wayne State University. He currently holds the Robert J. Sokol, MD Endowed Chair in Systems Biology, as well as appointments as full professor in the Departments of Computer Science and Obstetrics and Gynecology. Professor Draghici is also the head of the Intelligent Systems and Bioinformatics Laboratory (ISBL) in the Department of Computer Science. His work is focused on research in artificial intelligence, machine learning and data mining techniques applied to bioinformatics and computational biology. He has published over 150 peer-reviewed journal and conference publications as well as 8 book chapters and two books. To date, his work has gathered over 10,000 Google Scholar citations. His research group developed several bioinformatics data analysis software tools that are currently used by over 14,000 researchers around the world.

Lance Gable is an associate professor of law at Wayne State University Law School. His research addresses the overlap among law, policy, ethics, health and science. Gable, an internationally known expert on public health law and bioethics has published journal articles on a diverse array of topics, including public health law, ethics and policy; international human rights; bioterrorism and emergency preparedness; mental health; research ethics; and information privacy. He also is co-editor and co-author respectively of two books: Research with High Risk Populations: Balancing Science, Ethics and the Law and Legal Aspects of HIV/AIDS: A Guide for Policy and Law Reform. Gable holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from Johns Hopkins University and master of public health degree from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. He earned his law degree from Georgetown University Law Center.

Robert Harr is a professor of physics and astronomy at Wayne State University.




David Martin specializes in policy analysis, program evaluation, and computer programming, specializing in crime mapping and analysis of police and community data. Over the past 10 years, he has developed software and web applications for the computerized mapping and spatial analysis of data from police and fire departments. His software is used by several police departments to support CompStat-style accountability processes and strategic crime fighting. He is also currently a research partner for a U.S. Department of Justice-sponsored crime reduction initiative in Detroit

Carol Miller, professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Wayne State University, is director of Healthy Urban Waters.  Her research focus includes surface and subsurface water supplies, water infrastructure, and environmental remediation.  She is the US co-chair of the International Joint Commission - a bi-national agency supporting the US EPA and Environment Canada for the boundary waters between these countries.  Her team has developed a data platform for communication and analysis of water quality signals throughout the Huron to Erie water corridor, a water resource that serves more than 6 million people. Miller is also co-founder of the technology start-up Energy Emissions Intelligence, E2i.  

Jonathan Weinberg is an expert on Internet law, immigration law, and other topics; he is working on a book called Digital ID: Identity and Privacy in a Digital World. Weinberg has been a law clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, and to then-Judge Ruth Bader Ginsburg; a visiting scholar at the University of Tokyo; a legal scholar in residence at the FCC's Office of Plans and Policy; and a professor in residence at the U.S. Justice Department. He chaired a working group created by ICANN (the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, an international body that administers the Internet domain name system) to develop recommendations on the creation of new Internet top level domains.

Program moderators

Ratna Babu Chinnam is an expert in big data and business analytics and is a professor in the Industrial and Systems Engineering Department at Wayne State University (WSU). He is a founding director for the Big Data & Business Analytics Group at WSU. Chinnam is also the founding Director of the Global Executive PhD Track at Wayne State, the first such engineering PhD program in the U.S., and the novel Data Science & Business Analytics MS Degree at WSU. Chinnam also leads the Business Analytics Spoke for the NSF's Midwest Big Data Hub. His research interests include business analytics, big data, supply chain management, freight logistics, operations management, sustainability, healthcare systems engineering, and smart engineering systems. He received his B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering from Manipal Institute of Technology of Mangalore University (India) in 1988 and the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Industrial Engineering from Texas Tech University (U.S.A.) in 1990 and 1994, respectively.

Patrick Gossman is the deputy CIO, Community, Research and Special Projects for WSU. He began his computing career at WSU in 1975 as a statistics consultant. Gossman chaired the National ITFS Association from 1999 to 2007 and led national campaigns to retain FCC spectrum for education and to change regulations to allow usage of broadcast spectrum for high-speed data service. He has also served as Executive Director of the Community Telecommunications Network, a consortium of K-12, higher education and public television in Southeast Michigan, since 1993. He has been a member of ACM SIGUCCS since 1978 and served on its board from 1991 - 1995. Gossman earned B.A (1973), M.A. (1978) and Ph.D. (1980) degrees in Psychology at WSU majoring in learning with minors in computing and statistics.

Daren Hubbard is chief information officer and associate vice president for computing and information technology at Wayne State. In his role as CIO, Hubbard is responsible for the university's computing and networking facilities, datacenter operations, enterprise software applications, learning management environments, high-performance research computing, voice services, information security, and information technology support services. Hubbard and the IT organization are helping drive Wayne State forward to support its urban research university mission, by working with the campus to provide a superior technology experience to students, faculty, staff and other constituents.