Confirmed Speakers



Cindy Lott, Exec. Dir. & SR Counsel to the National State Attorneys General Program at Columbia Law School

Cindy M. Lott serves as Executive Director and Senior Counsel to the National State Attorneys General Program at Columbia Law School, and within that Program serves as the developer and lead counsel to the Charities Regulation and Oversight Project. A frequent speaker in the areas of philanthropic and nonprofit state regulation, compliance, management and governance, Lott develops and moderates a series of national conferences; in 2014-2015 she is a Visiting Fellow at the Urban Institute, engaged in research regarding regulatory capacity and enforcement at the state and federal levels. Lott served as legal counsel to the 2000 and 2004 Democratic National Conventions, taught at the graduate level in both policy and law schools, served as a Chief Counsel in a state attorney general's office and worked in private practice. Lott is a 1993 graduate of the Yale Law School and clerked for the United States Court of Appeals, First Circuit.

John H. Graham IV, CAE, President & CEO for ASAE; Chairman of the board for BBB MGF

JOHN H. GRAHAM IV, CAE became the President and Chief Executive Officer of the American Society of Association Executives August 1, 2003. During the first year of his tenure, ASAE and GWSAE completed an historic merger resulting in a new organization, ASAE and Center for Association Leadership. ASAE & The Center for Association Leadership help associations and association professionals achieve previously unimaginable levels of performance. ASAE & The Center are more than 22,000 association executives and industry partners representing nearly 11,000 organizations, with a budget of $35 million and a staff of 135. He has a bachelor's degree from Franklin & Marshall College and serves on the Association Committee of 100, US Chamber of Commerce; BBB Wise Giving Alliance Board of Directors; Convention Industry Council Board of Directors and America's Promise Board of Trustee's.

Jim Manis, Founder & CEO, BBB Mobile Giving Foundation

Mr. Manis has an extensive history in successfully developing international markets for technology-based companies, and leading pioneering initiatives in wireless technology and philanthropy. He was a key leader in building the direct-to-consumer mobile business in the US and Canada, established industry standards and Consumer Best Practices through the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) and CTIA, and was responsible for the first use of mobile giving in response to relief efforts for the Indonesian tsunami and Hurricane Katrina as an executive of m-Qube, Inc. Mr. Manis founded the Mobile Giving Foundation in 2007 and the Mobile Giving Foundation Canada in 2009 with the support from other leaders in the wireless and nonprofit communities to pioneer the use of mobile solutions for social good. The Mobile Giving Foundation entered into partnership with the Council of Better Business Bureau and the BBB Wise Giving Alliance in 2012, in a joint effort to grow the mobile giving channel, and reinforce charity standards of transparency and accountability.

John Overy, Director Mobile Technology, Mobilization, World Vision

John is a digital and mobile industry veteran with over 15 years experience in bringing new ideas to market and launching innovative mobile services. His expertise is in incubating new business concepts, building teams, business development, product development, and operations for mobile, Internet, and media industries. John is currently focused on integrating mobile websites, apps, advertising, retail stores and event marketing to bring smiles to children for World Vision.

Peter Panepento, VP of the Network, Council of Foundations

Peter has spent 7+ years at the Chronicle of Philanthropy reporting on the philanthropic sector, developing partnerships, building networks, and identifying new ways to interact with nonprofit and foundation leaders. As the assistant managing editor at the Chronicle and a strong leader in the field, he built some of the most powerful and influential social networks in philanthropy, launched a world-class Webinar series, and developed partnerships with software companies, conference organizers, nonprofits, media companies, and trade associations. Peter also founded a website devoted to supporting economic and social development in Pennsylvania, and he was a reporter in Erie, PA.

Michael Becker, VP Market Strategy, Somo to Michael Becker, Co-Founder, mCordis

Michael Becker is a mobile marketing industry leader, entrepreneur, volunteer and academic. Alongside Somo's North American-established teams in San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York, Becker leverages the company's premier mobile strategy, creative, media and technology services to help businesses extend their reach, build customer engagement, increase sales and improve efficiency. Specifically, Becker focuses on evangelizing and educating the marketplace on the potential of mobile marketing throughout the path-to-purchase and within specific market verticals. Becker plays a crucial role in advancing Somo, the largest mobile marketing agency in the world and recently recognized as the Most Innovative Mobile Agency by the Mobile Mafia awards. Somo aims to make sense of mobile by solving business problems (increasing sales, developing customer engagement, and enhancing productivity) through cutting-edge mobile strategy, innovation, and technology. Its clients include GroupOn, Disney, Audi, RedBull and many more.

Scott Delacourt, Partner, Wiley Rein

Mr. Delacourt advises clients on Federal Communications Commission (FCC) regulatory and transactional matters. He has a broad range of experience in wireless, telecom, mobile marketing, and data privacy issues.

Sonia Vahedian, VP of Operations & Carrier Compliance, MGF

Vahedian brings over 20 years of experience in business, operations and technology leadership to her role as VP of operations and Carrier Compliance. Before coming Mobile Giving Foundation, Vahedian was VP of Operations at Hook Mobile, Air Arts, and prior to that she served as VP of Engineering Services for Mobile 365 (Sybase 365/SAP), a global company for which she helped build a sophisticated organizational structure and cutting-edge technology infrastructure - building and managing data center operations in Asia, Europe and the U.S. Vahedian also worked with LogicTier Inc. and DataZen Corp. where she managed project budgets, planning and allocating resources, coordinating requirements analysis and prototype development, and vendor management. Her professional career began in the Energy industry with BP Amoco, Statoil Energy, and KN Energy where she held a variety of technical positions. Vahedian holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering & Material Science from the University of Oklahoma.

Bennett Weiner, COO, BBB Wise Giving Alliance

Bennett Weiner serves as chief operating officer of the BBB Wise Giving Alliance. This is the organization that resulted from the 2001 merger of the National Charities Information Bureau and the Council of Better Business Bureaus' Foundation which housed the Philanthropic Advisory Service program. In this capacity, he manages all aspects of the organization that monitors and reports on charitable organizations that solicit nationally or have national or international program services. He also counsels soliciting organizations on how to meet the voluntary Standards for Charity Accountability. Mr. Weiner joined the Council of Better Business Bureaus in 1980 and held several positions in the philanthropic division. Over the years, he has been interviewed or quoted in print and broadcast media including ABC's Good Morning America, CBS Evening News, CNN, CNBC, ABC News Radio, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and U.S. News & World Report.

Tim Miller, President, SUMOTEXT

Tim's career began after he completed the Systems Engineer Development program with the Electronic Commerce Division of EDS. Tim later led EDS' implementation of the first electronic bill presentment and payment (EBPP) solutions that included MCI/Worldcom. In 1999 Tim was hired by IBM to build an EBPP National Practice in New York. Tim was on point as his teams successfully sold and implemented over 60 complex EBPP projects around the globe to the world's largest financial services, telcos, and public utilities that included Citibank, State Farm, Geico, and Optus. Tim founded SUMOTEXT in 2007, guided the company to profitability in 2011, and today maintains his original role as product manager of our mobile relationship management platform. Tim has a B.B.A. from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and was a 2011 Arkansas Business selection to the "40 Under 40" list of businesspeople in Arkansas.

Lars Hjoerne, Founder & President, Connect2give

Lars is a true expert in mobile payment and mobile value added services. He is one of a few with in-depth experience in the mobile industry going back to the launch of mobile billing and added value mobile services in Scandinavia in 2000. As one of the pioneers in the mobile industry, Lars has been involved in start-up of four mobile companies as CEO, Managing Director and President in markets in Europe and the US. Prior to Connect2give, he founded Wireless Factory, an International gateway company located in Denmark and the US offering mobile payment services and worked as CEO and President. Previous to Wireless Factory, Lars he launched the mobile service provider Telitas in Denmark and was an important part of the international expansion of the company working as CEO.

Llyod Cotler, Mobile Strategist, Mobile Commons

Lloyd Cotler is a Mobile Strategist with Mobile Commons. He focuses on legislative strategy, advocacy, grassroots organizing and political action. Lloyd has worked with Mobile Commons for over 5 years, first as a customer with Reform Immigration FOR America (RI4A) and then as digital director at J Street. Lloyd has spent the past 8 years in advocacy work in Washington, DC with various campaigns and organizations and now works with Mobile Commons clients on issues ranging from LGBT rights to gun safety and immigration reform. Lloyd is a Brooklyn, NY native who graduated with a B.A. from the University of Maryland in government & politics. He's a New Organizing bootcamp alum and aspiring New Yorker caption contest winner. He currently lives in Washington, DC and can usually be

Chantal Tode, Associate Editor, Mobil Marketer/Mobile Commerce Daily

Chantal covers advertising, messaging, legal/privacy and database/CRM.Chantal Tode, Associate Editor, Mobile Marketer/Mobile Commerce Daily Chantal covers advertising, messaging, legal/privacy and database/CRM.

H. Art Taylor, President & CEO, BBB Wise Giving Alliance

Herman "Art" Taylor is president and chief executive officer of the BBB Wise Giving Alliance, the organization formed by the merger in early 2001 of the National Charities Information Bureau and the Council of Better Business Bureaus' Foundation, which housed the Philanthropic Advisory Service program. As head of the Alliance, he oversees all aspects of the organization's work, which includes setting standards for soliciting organizations, evaluating charities in relation to these standards, publishing the Wise Giving Guide, assisting local Better Business Bureau charity review programs, promoting charity accountability and providing a variety of materials on informed giving to individual, institutional and business donors.

Lisa Kagel – Senior Director, Digital Strategy and Experience
Digital Engagement, American Red Cross

In her current role at American Red Cross, Lisa and her team are responsible for helping the organization reshape the digital content delivery strategy, with a focus on digital marketing, personalization, content marketing, targeting, and customer contact to capture demand and increase acquisition and retention for fundraising, biomed, and training and certification, across the Red Cross digital ecosystem. Prior to joining the Red Cross, Lisa was Vice President, Strategy and Account Management at Empathy Lab (now EPAM systems), a digital strategy and consulting firm, where her experience included developing eCommerce and mobile strategies and tactics for a variety of ecommerce clients. Before Empathy Lab she held marketing strategy and strategic planning positions at Influence and G2 Interactive, developing digital business and marketing strategies across multiple industries for a variety of established brands. Lisa received her BA from Carnegie Mellon University and MBA from Washington University in St. Louis.

Katherine Winchester is the Manager for the Mobile Giving Foundation Canada

Katherine has been with the Foundation for nearly five years and has served to oversee all facets of Canadian operations during this time. She manages relationships with all stakeholders, from the wireless operators, to platform developers, to charities, and to mobile users. Prior to her role with the Foundation, Katherine worked for Bell Canada leading an email response team focussed on customer service. Katherine holds a bachelor degree in Psychology from Carleton University in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, and will always have an ongoing interest in behavioral studies. This is why in her current role, Katherine regularly seeks to make sense of the motivational factors behind donor behavior through ongoing analysis of mobile campaign promotion and mobile campaign results.

Aria Finger COO,
President, TMI

As COO, Aria oversees the business development, finance and campaigns departments at, the largest org for young people and social change with 2.8million members and counting. Finger is also the Founder and President of TMI, a strategy agency that advises Fortune 500 brands and top NGOs on how to reach young people. She is an adjunct professor at NYU and was the youngest person named to the 2012 Crain’s NY Business “40 Under Forty” list.

Porter Mason, Dir. of Digital Platforms

Porter Mason has worked in online communications in the nonprofit world since 2005. Currently, he serves as the Director of Digital Platforms at the U.S. Fund for UNICEF where he develops the organizational strategy on established digital products. Prior to UNICEF, Porter worked for many years at Environmental Defense Fund doing web project management, production and strategy. Porter also does pro bono digital work for some smaller non-profits, such as Reach Incorporated and the Scott Carter Foundation. Porter is a published cartoonist and taught improvisational comedy for many years at the prestigious Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre in New York City.

Lara Koch Manager, Online Technology

Lara Koch has been with the HSUS since 2011. Her first role was to ask the question, “What about mobile?” at every possible opportunity. She helped implement the organization’s first mobile website, optimized action alerts and donation forms, and turn their SMS program into a full-fledged conversion channel. In 2013 she managed the mobilization of… including 5,000+ unique pages of content. Her role has since expanded to include the technical side of campaign strategy and how to bring great ideas to life in the online space – which means she’s still often asking the question, “What about mobile?”






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