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Brian Duke
GM/EVP Identity Solutions
Audience Acuity
Brian Duke is a seasoned professional with over 20 years of experience in enhancing marketing effectiveness and efficiency. As the GM/EVP of Identity and Data Solutions at Audience Acuity, he leads the strategy and delivery of solutions for identity resolution, data, intelligence, and privacy. Brian helps clients navigate the challenges of the cookieless, generative AI, and consumer privacy landscape, strengthening their first-party identity and data assets. His role also encompasses overseeing sales, business development, and partnership efforts.
Prior to joining Audience Acuity, Brian held senior positions at Clarity Partners, Accenture, and Epsilon/Publicis Groupe, where he developed and led innovative marketing and identity resolution strategies. His extensive background in marketing analytics, data management, and ad-tech has been instrumental in driving success for the companies he has served.
Lili Minjares
Sr. Manager Hilton Honors
Karen Szarvas
Sr. Director of CRM and Loyalty
The Vitamin Shoppe
Karen Szarvas serves as Sr. Director of CRM & Loyalty at The Vitamin Shoppe®, an omni-channel specialty retailer and wellness lifestyle company. In her role, Karen provides expertise and leadership to design marketing strategies to increase acquisition, customer engagement and retention. Karen has 20+ years of global marketing, CRM and Loyalty experience and is a dynamic, innovative, thought leader. Prior to joining The Vitamin Shoppe, she worked at Wyndham Worldwide where she managed the Wyndham Rewards Loyalty program, email, and direct marketing efforts and consulted at KMS Marketing Solutions specializing in loyalty, branding, and customer experiences.
Nicole Pavlovich
Sr. Director - Integrated Customer Marketing
Nicole has over 20 years of experience in QSR and Casual Dining. She joined Domino's in 2012 and took on progressive levels of responsibility, with experience leading teams in multiple areas of marketing. From running the in-house digital media buying team, to leading a/b testing and UX improvement across all eCommerce ordering platforms, to consulting with International markets on their digital strategies - Nicole has full funnel digital customer journey experience. In her current role, Nicole oversees digital customer retention activities, including owned media channels, targeted marketing and personalization efforts, and ownership of the loyalty program which recently evolved into the new Domino's Rewards.
Prior to Domino’s, Nicole worked in field marketing for Apple American Group and as a corporate trainer for Applebee’s International Inc. Nicole earned a bachelor’s degree in marketing from Western Michigan University and an MBA from University College, Dublin in Ireland. She currently resides in Michigan.
Ryan McGrath
EVP Digital and Marketing Innovation
Mille Lacs Corporate Ventures
Ryan McGrath – Executive Vice President of Digital and Marketing Innovation at Mille Lacs Corporate Ventures
Ryan McGrath is a digital and marketing leader with experience developing and executing award-winning marketing campaigns with a digital DNA and tech backbone. Ryan leads the Digital Innovation Group at Mille Lacs Corporate Ventures (MLCV) and is responsible for the growth, support, and scalability of the digital ecosystem and in-house marketing agency for Grand Casino Mille Lacs and Grand Casino Hinckley.
Ryan has experience working with companies ranging from radical startups to Fortune 500, and B2B to B2C organizations in the technology, gaming, hospitality, healthcare, retail, travel, CPG and manufacturing industries, such as Mystic Lake Casino Hotel, 3M, Cargill, Nike, Taco Bell, Intel, Dell, Uber, and many others.
John Giaquinto
Vice President of Loyalty Personalization and Analytics
Rite Aid

John is the Vice President of Loyalty, Personalization, and Analytics at Rite Aid. Prior to Rite Aid, John launched a digital-only loyalty program at Hannaford Supermarkets (part of Ahold Delhaize).  Additionally, he has more than 25 years of experience in marketing, with much of that in retail. His experience includes data-driven marketing roles from a variety of perspectives, including Vice President of CRM at Symphony EYC (including clients Ahold USA and Rite Aid) and Manager of Customer Loyalty Marketing at Shaw's Supermarkets.

Carrie Cohen
Marketing Loyalty & Analytics Manager
Carrie Cohen has seven years of marketing experience, four of those with Cinergy Entertainment. Carrie’s responsibilities include leading loyalty marketing initiatives to optimize acquisition, retention, personalization, and promotional strategies. Carrie is also responsible for analyzing campaign performance, and growth of the loyalty program. Carrie is an MBA graduate of Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi.
Jenn Chick
SVP and Global Head of Hilton Honors and Customer Engagement

Jenn Chick is the senior vice president and global head of Hilton Honors and Customer Engagement at Hilton. Jenn has more than 20 years of experience developing innovative marketing strategies across a variety of industries, including hospitality, travel and consumer packaged goods. In her current role, she is focused on elevating the customer experience and driving acquisition and retention for Hilton Honors, as well as overseeing performance and benefits, setting reward pricing and strategy, and providing overall program management. As a Hilton Honors member for almost a decade, her favorite benefit is the warm welcome and hospitality she receives no matter where in the world she stays.

Most recently, Jenn served as vice president of marketing execution and operations at Hilton, where she transformed marketing operations through the use of analytics, process optimization, automation and organizational transformation. She was responsible for developing a global integrated marketing strategy and delivering customer-centric content and creative to drive better marketing returns and customer experiences.

Prior to joining Hilton, Jenn worked for MarketBridge, McCann-Erickson and Arnold Worldwide in various marketing, sales and advertising roles. She holds an MBA from The Darden Graduate School of Business at the University of Virginia and a B.S. in Marketing from George Mason University. While Jenn can most frequently be found at a roadside Hampton by Hilton with her husband and three children, she always appreciates an opportunity to use her Hilton Honors Points for a special getaway at one of Hilton’s luxury resort properties around the world.

Michael Peters
Director of Partnerships
Kampgrounds of America
As the Director of Corporate Partnerships at Kampgrounds of America, Inc. (KOA), Michael collaborates with leading brands such as Progressive Insurance, ZIPPO, Goodyear, Coleman, Harley-Davidson, and AppleTV to connect their service or product to our camping customer. With over 10 years of experience in brand strategy and marketing, Michael’s role with KOA affords him to view partnerships and the KOA Rewards loyalty program with an eye towards mutual value and always the cross promotion.
Ryan Draude
Head of Loyalty
Giant Food

The current Head of Loyalty for Giant Food, Ryan Draude has invested his career in the evolution of long-term customer relationships made through the benefits of loyalty & retention programs.

With Giant, he is responsible for fostering the customer relationships with prospective and current shoppers across omnichannel interaction points and forging the path toward benefits and experiences that serve millions of shoppers who shop both in-store and via eCommerce across the Mid-Atlantic.

Ryan formerly led Choice Privileges, the multi-billion-dollar reward program for Choice Hotels, and over a five-year period overhauled the program via the scrutiny of member data and the respect to listen to what members sought from the program. The results catapulted the program to its first major Freddie Award and moved the program from #11 in the country to #2 in the US News & World Report’s Best Hotel Reward Program category.

Prior, Ryan earned a U.S. patent for his work standing up Sallie Mae’s customer engagement efforts via his delivery of the first true-cost college affordability online tool for all families to understand the real education financing. His tenure includes other loyalty, marketing, and financial leadership positions with Rite Aid, Capital One, Citigroup and Switchfly.

He is also an Adjunct Professor at Georgetown University, teaching Loyalty Strategy within their Hospitality Leadership program at the Master’s level for the past four years.

Walter Rodriguez
Vice President – Marketing and Operations
Frontier Communications

In his current role at Frontier Communications, Walter is charged with developing the strategic intent and business strategy for Frontier’s Consumer Organization. In addition to leading the Portfolio Management Office (PMO) and the Voice of the Customer team, he also leads the Customer Relationship Management (CRM) team, charged with driving customer loyalty and expanding Customer Lifetime Value.

Prior to joining Frontier Communications, Walter led the Integrated Marketing and PMO  for Audible, an Amazon company, where he also served as Chief of Staff for the Chief Marketing Officer. Prior to joining Amazon, he played a significant role as the Chief Operating Officer for Verizon’s in-house CX and Design Team which he helped build via acquisition and organic growth. Walter was integral in growing the team to over 250 designers located in NYC, New Jersey, Arkansas and India. Walter also played a key role in the formation of Verizon Enterprise Solutions where he was the Director of Business Operations and was responsible for organizational alignment, marketing effectiveness, resource planning, knowledge and preparedness of the Marketing organization.

Walter received his MBA from Centenary University in Parsippany New Jersey and has a minor in economics from Rutgers University in Newark New Jersey.  He is a member of Prospanica (FKA, National Society of Hispanic MBA), where he served on the board as the Executive Vice President and currently serves on the Board of Directors for HISPA (Hispanics Inspiring Student Performance and Achievement) where he chairs the strategy committee.

Denise Holt
SVP of Strategy Experience & Research
Denise understands the power of human insights in driving smart strategy and business growth. With over 20 years of experience in consumer loyalty, brand and creative strategy, consumer insights, human-centered design, and business strategy, Denise leads Phaedon’s strategy, experience, and research team. As part of our company’s thought leadership, she spearheaded a substantial multi-method research initiative that led the industry and has been embraced for uncovering insights about the drivers that are core to all human connections—Humanizing Loyalty: A road map to establishing genuine emotional loyalty at scale. In 2023, her team led and published research entitled Sparking Consumer Participation Through Shared Values and Beliefs. Denise’s clients across a variety of industries (travel, hospitality, retail, restaurant, health, wellness, and more) benefit from her strategic guidance, research leadership, and continuous pulse on emerging trends and human insights.
Prior to Phaedon (previously known as ICF Next), Denise ran her own strategy consulting practice, was the director of strategy and branding at Optum, and spent more than a decade in marketing and brand planning roles within the loyalty space. She is passionate about uncovering personal stories and insights from consumers, employees and business leaders that enable organizations to connect on an emotional level with those they serve. Denise brings clarity and focus to drive meaningful business growth.
Ricardo Frydman
Director - Performance Analytics and Pricing
Tim Hortons
Ricardo Frydman is the Director of Business Performance & Pricing for Tims Financial, the financial arm of Tim Hortons, also known as “Tims”, the largest and most loved coffeehouse and restaurant chain in Canada. He holds an MBA in Finance from NYU Stern School of Business (USA) and a BS in Civil Engineer from PUC-Rio de Janeiro (Brazil). He resides in Burlington, Canada, loves winter sports and is a husband and proud dad of 3 kids.
Ricardo joined Tim’s in 2018 and led Marketing Analytics & Pricing for Tims Canada and USA. He supported the launch of Tims Reward Program, running analytics for several concepts of the program prior to its debut. In 2022, he joined the team responsible for standing up Tims Financial, overseeing financial modeling, data analytics, pricing, and credit risk. Since the official launch of Tims Financial in July 2023, Ricardo leads a team responsible for monitoring business performance and generating insights to sustainably grow the business.
Prior from joining Tims, he worked in Investment Banking, Management Consulting and led M&A and Strategy for leading Companies in their sectors.
Dena Pizzutti
Senior Marketing Manager of Personalization and Optimization
Dena Pizzutti is the Senior Marketing Manager of Personalization and Optimization for Wawa, a chain of nearly 1,000 convenience retail stores in the Mid-Atlantic and Florida. With 14 years of loyalty marketing experience, she currently leads the Wawa Rewards loyalty program, targeted marketing, and digital optimization for Wawa and previously worked on the CVS ExtraCare program.  Dena holds an MBA from Boston College and a Doctorate in Business Administration from Temple University.
Chandler Varonfakis
Customer Loyalty Program Specialist
Food Lion
Chandler Varonfakis is the Customer Loyalty Program Specialist at Food Lion, helping execute loyalty marketing efforts for the grocery supermarket chain's extensive network of over 1,100 stores across 10 states in the Mid-Atlantic and Southeastern United States. In her role, Chandler is responsible for developing and implementing strategies aimed at strengthening customer satisfaction, retention, and acquisition within the brand.
Chandler proudly holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, AL. With a background in public accounting, sales, and marketing, she is able to leverage her professional experience to make data-driven decisions that grow Food Lion's customer base and company revenue. This journey has fueled her passion for loyalty, as she is enthusiastic about driving business goals while also connecting with customers.
Asif Akhtar
Senior Marketing Manager
Asif leads the customer-centric partnership and engagement strategy for TELUS Rewards, driving new and innovative ideas to increase customer value proposition, customer loyalty, and business benefits. Asif has more than 18 years of cross-industry, multi-faceted marketing experience across 5 countries and has driven the growth of the multiple award-winning TELUS Rewards program since inception.
John Sellers
Head of Rewards
Bank of America

John Sellers is the digital executive in charge of Rewards at BofA. In this role, John oversees all reward programs; including consumer, wealth management and small business relationship rewards programs and credit card rewards redemption. In 2022, Preferred Rewards was named ‘America’s Best Loyalty Program’ by Newsweek and ‘Best Bank Customer Loyalty Program’ by Motley Fool. 

Prior to his current role, John had worked with other products including; Vehicle Lending, Investments, and Credit Card.  While in Card, John was the Director of Preferred Products and New Account Acquisition where he was responsible for all mass affluent BofA and Merrill branded products. John is the architect of the award winning Travel Rewards Card and led the effort to bring Chip technology to BofA cards.

Before his product roles, John spent the first half of his career in Credit Risk, where he was the Director of Risk Strategies. In this role, John oversaw existing account management strategies which included; line management, balance stimulation (cash and retail), authorizations (overlimit and delinquent) and other payment related strategies.

John began his career with BofA via the MBNA acquisition. He has an undergraduate degree from the University of Delaware where he was a Finance major. He also has an MBA from Penn State’s Smeal College of Business where he graduated with distinction and is a member of the Beta Gamma Sigma academic honor society.

John is involved in several community organizations. He is a lifesaver for the Blood Bank of DE and coaches several youth sport teams in Kennett Square, PA where he resides with his wife and three kids.

Emily Mikus
Sr. Director of Loyalty Strategy
Ahold Delhaize USA

Emily Mikus serves as Senior Director, Loyalty Strategy at Ahold Delhaize USA (ADUSA) where she is focused on enabling the execution of digital, personalized loyalty experiences across five omnichannel grocery brands – Food Lion, Giant Food, The GIANT Company, Hannaford and Stop & Shop. Emily is passionate about data-driven, customer-centric innovation to evolve the retail loyalty experience. Over her nearly 20-year retail career, she has managed a diverse portfolio of functions including research and analytics, omnichannel marketing and loyalty strategy.

In her current position, Emily leads a team dedicated to advancing both brand-specific loyalty strategies and fostering cross-brand innovation that leverages ADUSA’s size and scale in the marketplace. Her team serves as a collaborative partner enabling and progressing digital personalized loyalty, always learning and leveraging insight to refine local loyalty strategies and digital personalization.

Previously, Emily held several key leadership roles with The GIANT Company, including positions in brand marketing, consumer research and insights, strategic planning and business development, and shopper and loyalty marketing. Her strategic leadership and comprehensive data-driven focus across multiple business disciplines results in a deep understanding of consumer behavior, brand dynamics and competitive landscapes. Her analytical drive to continually uncover new opportunities and love for data and customer innovation fuels her passion for loyalty marketing.

Emily holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Millersville University. Outside of work, she is a proud mom of two active boys and spends much of her free time at various soccer fields around Central Pennsylvania. 

Sean Eidson
VP of Strategy & Innovation
A leader in the Loyalty+CRM practice at Material+, Sean Eidson helps clients create industry-changing programs by engineering consumer behavior.  A strategist at heart, he ranges into topics of technology, data, financial planning and loves to optimize customer journeys when he’s not designing points schemes. 
He has worked with dozens of enterprise-level clients such as Pizza Hut, WinnDixie, 7-Eleven, Whataburger, Dr Pepper, Gamestop, Bridgestone, AT+T, Synchrony Financial, and Barnes+Noble.
Sean lives in Austin with wife and two sons where he’s president of the HS golf team booster club and lead chef for the scout troop.
Jeri Scheel
Sr. Director - Digital Strategy
Jeri Scheel, Senior Director for Digital Strategy, has been with Fiserv for over 10 years with ever-expanding responsibilities culminating in her current role of leading digital products like the uChoose Rewards loyalty program and Digital Issuance. Jeri brings insights to the digital space based on her extensive years in telecom, building mobile applications and partnering with clients and vendors worldwide.

Jeri has Bachelor’s and Masters degrees in Business from Kent State University and is an avid, competitive tennis player who loves to read and travel.
Michael McDowell
VP of Loyalty Programs and Partnerships
Mike McDowell is the Vice President of Loyalty Programs and Partnerships at Parkland.  In his role, Mike is responsible for the customer loyalty strategy and driving organic growth of the business with the Journie Rewards program in the Canadian, International and US markets.  Previous to joining Parkland Mike was SVP, Client Development & Partnerships at Bond Brand Loyalty where he led clients in driving positive outcomes through large international loyalty and CX programs.  Mike was instrumental in setting up the Journie Rewards program in the Canadian market for Parkland as part of Bond.  Prior to Bond, Mike spent 11 years in progressively senior sales and marketing roles at Blackberry.
Renee Doerre
Senior Director of Loyalty
Renee Doerre, Senior Director of Loyalty, leads loyalty partnerships for Target Circle. Her scope includes developing and managing strategic loyalty partnerships, enhancing guest engagement, and driving membership growth. Prior to this role, Renee spent eight years building and growing Roundel, Target’s retail media business, where she focused on strategic growth and operational excellence.
Renee’s extensive background includes leadership roles at Cars.com, Valassis, and Electronic Arts. In these positions, she drove digital marketing, strategic partnerships, and brand marketing strategies that significantly contributed to the growth and launch of several innovative products. 
Her work has been recognized by top industry awards, including Effies, Cannes Lions, and Reggies. Renee holds a deep understanding of digital strategy, growth strategies, and technology integration, making her instrumental in transforming business environments and achieving growth. 
Mike Kerr
SVP - Digital Director
Bank of America
Michael is a 27-year professional with Bank of America, working in Preferred Rewards, Advertising and the Learning organizations. A proven individual contributor and manager, inspiring teammates to achieve and develop their skills. A consistent exceeds performer and avid volunteer; currently supporting the Food Bank of Delaware, Habitat for Humanity, Fort Delaware and serving as the secretary for his HOA.
Carolyn Hynds
VP Marketing - CRM & Member Engagement Avion Rewards
Royal Bank of Canada
Carolyn is the Vice President of Marketing, CRM & Member Engagement for Avion Rewards, at RBC. Previously, she led the team that created Be Well, Rexall and McKesson's innovative and award-winning loyalty program that unifies health and wellness. Her passion for data driven marketing fostered a career focused on using customer insights to drive business decisions, starting with market research firm NPD Group, and later, managing two of the largest loyalty programs in Canada at Shoppers Drug Mart and Canadian Tire. Carolyn takes pride in her ability to develop talent and build high performing teams which has been critical to her success leading large transformational innovation projects.
Karim Chaanine
Chief Marketing Officer
Papa Johns UAE Saudi Arabia and Jordan
Karim Chaanine is a growth-hacking business strategist and the Chief Marketing Officer for Papa Johns in the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, and Jordan. With over 15 years of experience in sales and marketing, Karim has consistently delivered exceptional results across various industries. His uncompromising approach to business transformation and a rich history in client-side sales and marketing at leading companies like Procter & Gamble and Nestlé distinguish him as a leader in the field.

Karim has also founded a successful media and marketing consultancy and a food and beverage brand in Malaysia. His innovative strategies and ability to disrupt traditional norms have earned him three Effie Awards and recognition for pioneering an efficient, digital-only communication ecosystem within his organizations.
At Nestlé, Karim achieved the position of the youngest associate executive manager, leading the company’s largest division with an annual turnover exceeding USD 0.5 billion. In January 2023, he joined PJP Investments as Chief Marketing Officer, bringing his strategic vision and expertise to further propel the growth of Papa Johns in his regions.
Dr. JR. Slubowski
Associate VP of Strategic Consulting
JR focuses on creating engaging data-driven experiences for brands that customers love. His commitment to craft critical thought-out strategies allows him to perform complex customer analytics and to drive results with relevant data. He specializes in customer analytics, marketing communications and strategic planning.  
JR has close to 10 years of experience within the Loyalty Marketing industry and has extensive experience across retail, travel, entertainment, restaurants, and financial institutions. Some of the retail companies that he has worked with are, Warner Bros, PetSmart, Dillard’s, and Walgreens.
Amy Barnett
VP of Loyalty and Digital Experience
Cracker Barrel
Amy Barnett is a customer-obsessed marketing leader with decades of CRM and Loyalty experience developing and managing many of the largest marketing databases and award-winning loyalty programs.

Working in a variety of agency and client-side positions she’s led CRM Strategy, Loyalty, Analytics and Insights with the pleasure of partnering with best-in-class brands across various verticals including: American Eagle Outfitters, Build-A-Bear Workshop, The Container Store, Comcast Communications, Express, GameStop, Famous Footwear, Hard Rock International, Hertz, Jiffy Lube, Michaels, Procter & Gamble, R.J. Reynolds, T.J.Maxx, StubHub, Victoria’s Secret, and Unilever.

In her current role as Vice President, Digital, Loyalty & CRM at Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Amy’s strategic vision propelled Cracker Barrel’s digital transformation while maintaining its cherished traditions and delivering on Cracker Barrel’s brand promise of Pleasing People and caring for guests like family. Whether it’s enjoying a hearty meal, exploring the retail store, or participating in the recently launched rewards program, Cracker Barrel remains a beloved destination for guests across the country.

Amy holds a B.S. in Marketing from Clarkson University and an MBA from the University of Texas, Dallas. She’s called northern New York, Connecticut, Texas, California and for the past 15 years, St. Louis home.

Sabine Schroeder
VP of Commercial Excellence
Yara International
Sabine Schroeder is VP Commercial & Customer Excellence Americas at Yara North America Inc., headquartered in Tampa, FL.  She is with Yara for 16 years and has held several commercial leadership positions prior to leading the company’s commercial excellence program. With a customer-centric mindset and a passion for strategy, innovation and digital transformation, Sabine is driving transformative initiatives that enhance customer engagement and operational efficiency across the entire Americas region.  
Yara International is a global leader in sustainable agriculture and environmental solutions, providing products and services that support farmers across the globe, enhance crop nutrition and improve agricultural productivity. Yara is committed to fostering a nature-positive food future, leveraging innovation and expertise to reduce environmental impact and drive growth.  
Sabine moved from Germany to Florida two years ago and now lives in Bradenton, FL with her partner and Australian Shephard Kody. She loves music and is passionate about Pickleball.
Amanda Jamerson
Sr. Director of Hilton Honors
Amanda Jamerson is recognized as a Woman to Watch & Role Model for Inclusion Hospitality by the Travel & Leisure Index and has over a decade of hospitality experience. With a multifaceted 14+ year career based in customer experience, marketing and eCommerce, she has remained committed to blending customer needs with marketing and technology to drive the business forward. She is a passionate leader focused on mentoring, developing and inspiring people in their careers and she pushes boundaries to create a diverse and equitable work environment.
Currently a Sr. Director of Hilton Honors, known as an award-winning guest loyalty program for Hilton’s portfolio of brands, comprising of more than 7,100 properties and over 150 million members. Amanda is responsible for developing a comprehensive multi-year program strategy that expands Hilton Honors across core loyalty segments and key enterprise growth areas. Leveraging customer-driven research and data, she oversees the evolution of member benefits and unlocks brand positioning to future-proof and propel Hilton Honors forward. Amanda is a graduate of Grand Valley State University with a bachelor’s degree in advertising and minor in hospitality and tourism management. 
When not working she is a full-time wife, mother, and travel enthusiast. Amanda lives every day by the Jane Goodall quote “What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide the difference you want to make.”
Jeff Sopko
Chief Strategy Officer
Audience Acuity
Jeff Sopko is the Chief Strategy & Growth Officer at Audience Acuity, where he has been driving strategy and growth initiatives for over four years. With more than 25 years of experience in corporate leadership, marketing strategy, technology innovation, consulting, and marketing services, Jeff has been instrumental in the development and innovation of Audience Acuity's enterprise identity resolution solutions. Prior to this, he held senior roles at Woodside Ventures, Loyalty360, and Baesmam, showcasing his expertise in loyalty programs, digital marketing, and e-commerce solutions. Jeff's leadership extends to his advisory roles and contributions to various organizations, reflecting his commitment to advancing the industry.
Daniel Audisho
Director - Loyalty Strategy & Program Insights

Daniel leads the Loyalty Strategy & Program Insights team at Loblaw, which operates Canada’s largest and most loved loyalty program, PC Optimum. Loblaw is Canada’s largest grocery and drug retailer, with 2,400+ stores nationwide, and operates a variety of related businesses spanning health and wellness, apparel, and financial services. Each year, 16M+ PC Optimum members take advantage of the program by earning and redeeming points to save on their purchases, taking advantage of member-exclusive pricing, and leveraging our mobile app to ease their shopping experience.

In his role, Daniel leads the teams responsible for PC Optimum’s overall strategy, overseeing major program changes and innovation, and measuring program performance. As part of his program insights work, Daniel recently led the implementation of a Voice Of Customer program that has enabled PC Optimum to systematically collect customer feedback, monitor customer experience health, and survey customers to identify customer pain points and program improvements. Daniel is looking forward to sharing more about how this program is enabling PC Optimum to be more customer-centric than ever before at Loyalty Expo.

Nicole Hulstein
Loyalty Marketing Manager
Food Lion

Nicole Hulstein currently holds the role of Loyalty Marketing Manager for Food Lion, a grocery retailer that operates 1,108 grocery retail locations over 10 states. As Loyalty Marketing Manager, Nicole is responsible for ensuring that the strategy of Food Lion's Loyalty Program achieves the key performance indicators of a strong loyalty program while achieving the financial obligations for the organization. She serves as the key CRM owner of the email and push channels.

Nicole has worked in grocery retail for 19+ years in many capacities including procurement, financial analysis, merchandising, category management and her current passion - loyalty marketing! In the years of service, Nicole has led teams through innovative dynamic supply chain changes, system migrations, process changes and category management of a multi-million dollar business. She brings creativity and a curious mindset to the loyalty area of the business - traits that were paramount to the creation of a 3 year strategy plan to inform the future of Loyalty for Food Lion.

Nicole has a bachelor of science degree with a marketing concentration from Pfeiffer University. She has enjoyed many post graduate training and development opportunities including: Cornell University Food Management Program, Scotwork North America Advanced Negotiation Skills and Emerging Leaders Program at the University of Arizona.

Nicole brings creative high energy and optimism to address business opportunities and align teams on a go-forward process to achieve objectives. She has a keen understanding of the supply chain side of the organization and our customer which she brings into creating meaningful marketing materials which communicate the right message while driving strong financial performance.

Nicole has received several professional recognitions including "Produce Business Top 40 Under 40" (2020), Emerging Leader (2021) and Mentor in the Making (2022).

She resides in Kannapolis, NC with her husband (Kevin), children - Noah (13), Quinn (8).

Avery Miller
VP Avion Rewards Consumer Digital Products
Royal Bank of Canada
Avery is a veteran of banking and payments having held positions across operations, risk, strategy, and product for nearly 20 years. He currently leads shopping experiences and digital consumer products for Avion Rewards, RBC’s award-winning loyalty and rewards program. Prior to this Avery was responsible for bank partnership integrations, like card-linking and pay with points, and commerce optimization for enterprise clients at PayPal. He was also responsible for the innovation labs and digital commerce strategy at Capital One, including the purchase of Wikibuy (now Capital One Shopping). Avery loves solving interesting and complex user problems and is the author of several payments’ patents.
Marquita Ferguson
VP - Digital Director of Preferred Rewards for Business
Bank of America

Marquita Ferguson is the VP, Digital Director for the Preferred Rewards for Business program at Bank of America that provides exclusive loyalty rewards for Small Business members who deepen their relationship with the bank. She is responsible for managing the PRB lifecycle by developing the program’s overall strategic roadmap and driving tactics to support the program’s business objectives while integrating across multiple product lines such as Card, Savings, Deposits, Merchant, Payroll and beyond. She leads the strategic development and execution of the company’s annual PR Year End Summary personalized videos, while continuing to achieve recognition as a Loyalty360 industry leader in B2B rewards programs. Notably, Marquita recently won the company’s most prestigious Pinnacle 2023 Award for her team’s innovative video production efforts in support of National Entrepreneur’s Day.

Maria Mora
Sr. Manager - Digital Growth and Innovation
Burger King

Maria is a dynamic leader at the intersection of Marketing, Technology, and Innovation, with over 15 years of extensive industry experience.

 At Burger King, Maria spearheads digital innovation campaigns and partnerships that build brand loyalty and drive customer acquisition. Her initiatives have employed a variety of gamified tactics and emerging technologies, including NFTs, cryptocurrency, and, most recently AI, where she led Burger King’s first AI-powered campaign, “Million Dollar Whopper Contest.” Her expertise in blending technology with creative marketing solutions is continuously reshaping the digital experience.

Maria’s creative foundation is rooted in Graphic Design and Art direction and her previous experience at companies like Fox Entertainment and Spotify have sharpened her ability to drive brand engagement through creative content strategies. As a proud Colombian and an empowered Latina, Maria brings a unique perspective, championing diversity and innovation in every project she undertakes.

Dave Van Saun
VP of CRM and Ancillary
Great Wolf Resorts
Dave Van Saun is the VP of CRM and Ancillary for Great Wolf Resorts, which he joined in 2017. On the CRM side, he drives customer engagement and repeats with the Voyagers program and platform, as well as driving personalization and segmentation efforts across all of Great Wolf’s channels. He also leads revenue optimization of all Ancillary products, including F&B, Retail, Attractions, Cabanas, and packages. Prior to Great Wolf he spent seven years at United Airlines in Merchandising, Operations Strategy, and Finance after receiving his MBA from The University of Chicago - Booth School of Business. He attended Boston College for undergrad, and lives in Chicago with his wife with two daughters.
Barbara Ann Hagen
Vice President - Sales and Marketing

Barbara Hagen is the Vice President of Sales and Marketing of ThriftBooks, the world’s largest online independent seller of used and new books. Hagen has more than 20 years of experience as a senior marketing executive with an exceptional track record of success at Fortune 100 companies spanning Retail, CPG, and Tech and proven expertise in many areas including global strategy; loyalty and retention; eCommerce, inclusive of digital and performance marketing; omnichannel marketing; media, social, and multi-channel communications. Her previous roles include executive marketing leadership positions at Target, Microsoft, Best Buy and Johnson & Johnson.

As a data-driven marketer she leverages her experience to drive profitable sales growth, establish deep customer loyalty, and bring to market innovative strategies for ThriftBooks. Her extensive background has enabled her to successfully deliver continued top-line and bottom-line growth for ThriftBooks while strengthening the brand’s overall market position within the industry.

Hagen received her undergraduate degree in Marketing and Advertising from Syracuse University, an MBA in International Marketing from NYU’s Stern School of Business, and a Master of Science in Business Analytics also from NYU’s Stern School of Business.  She lives in the Seattle area with her husband, three kids, and two much-loved cats.

Lindsay Smith
Sr. Growth Marketing Manager
Blaze Pizza
Lindsay Smith is a digital marketing & customer engagement strategist with 12 years’ experience developing, evolving, and personalizing the digital customer journey. Most recently, Lindsay has led the digital customer strategy for fast-casual restaurant leaders such as Blaze Pizza and QDOBA Mexican Eats. In her role as Sr. Growth Marketing Manager at Blaze Pizza, Lindsay serves as the lead strategist for the brand’s off-premise growth verticals and loyalty program, Blaze Rewards.
Prior to joining the Fast Casual industry, Lindsay led digital marketing and eCommerce strategy for companies in the Home Improvement space, like Emerson Commercial and Residential Solutions and Luminance Brands. Along with her team, Lindsay is a 2024 Loyalty360 Award finalist and 2023 winner and is excited to learn from her industry peers at the 2024 Loyalty360 Expo. 
Sabrina Lillew
VP of Loyalty Programs and Partnerships - North and Central America
Sabrina’s hospitality career spans over 30+ years.  She started her career at The Fairmont Royal York where she held various roles in Accounting and Tour & Travel Sales before moving to Corporate Headquarters in 2000.  Within Corporate, she held progressive sales and marketing roles before joining the Loyalty team.  It didn’t take long for Sabrina to realize that this was where her true passion was, and she never looked back.   She now has 15+ years of loyalty experience and uses her background in marketing, sales, and customer service to support her in her current role as Vice President, Loyalty Programs & Partnerships where she determines the strategy, marketing, and operation of Accor’s B2C and B2B loyalty and certificate programs along with loyalty partnerships for North and Central America.
Bridget Murphy
Director of Marketing
Pavilion Payments
Bridget Murphy is a well-rounded and versatile marketing professional with over 18 years of combined experience in the Detroit, Chicago, Des Moines, and Las Vegas markets. With previous roles at NBC Universal and MGM Resorts International, Bridget brings a deep understanding of client relationships and industry dynamics to her current position as Director of Marketing at Pavilion Payments. Currently, Bridget focuses much of her efforts on strengthening Pavilion Payments’ B2B and B2C presence, leveraging her expertise in strategic planning and campaign management to ensure the effective execution of marketing initiatives and the achievement of organizational goals.
Jonathan Silver
Engage People
As the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Engage People, Jonathan is responsible for managing all facets of the business. He leads the long-term corporate strategy, marketing and sales at one of the fastest-growing technology companies in Canada, according to Profit Magazine. Jonathan has a proven executive management track record and over 20 years of experience driving growth in the loyalty and technology industry. Prior to Engage People, Jonathan held numerous senior positions in the loyalty sector and was Chairman and Co-owner of MyAxs and CEO and Co-founder of Access (formerly LRG Rewards). His passion is the customer space where he focuses on developing innovative solutions that drive tangible results. Jonathan is a member of the leadership team and board of directors at Engage People. He earned an MBA from the Ivey Business School at the University of Western Ontario.
Brittany Trangsrud
 External Communications Manager
 Great Clips
Brittany Trangsrud is a passionate communications leader focused on delivering creative solutions and public relations strategies that engage consumers and address business challenges. With a decade of experience, both at agencies and in-house, she has led the development and execution of integrated PR and digital strategies for brands spanning retail, franchise, food & beverage, entertainment, hospitality and technology. She joined Great Clips in 2023 in the role of External Communications Manager where she leads public relations, social media, influencer partnerships and guest services for the world’s largest salon brand.

Brittany received her undergraduate degree in Communications and Marketing from the University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire and a Master of Arts in Strategic Communication from the University of Minnesota. Brittany is passionate about her community and serves as a communications volunteer for the American Red Cross Minnesota & Dakotas.
Ashlee Regan
Sr. Director Technology
Ashlee Regan, Senior Director, Marketing Technology, is responsible for leading Target’s Guest Data and Loyalty systems and Platforms.  This work is leveraged across the organization to bring to life personalized guest experiences and bring joy and delight to each guest interaction with Target. 
Ashlee has more than 12 years of experience leading engineering teams across the globe and is passionate about building high performing inclusive teams that deliver on high quality systems and solutions for Target.
Per Jensen
Director - Loyalty
Stop & Shop
Per is the Loyalty Lead at Stop&Shop. Here he has transformed the impact and role of Loyalty through a customer centric approach. He built Catalina Marketing from the ground up in Germany and has extensive experience with in the Retail/CPG space. He has held high level roles across the spectrum covering business strategy, finance, operations, advanced analytics, consumer insights and new technologies to drive sales.
He is married and has three children. When the opportunity presents itself, he won’t shy away from bigger challenges: He climbed to the point on earth closest to the sun (Mount Chimborazo in Ecuador) and on weekends you may find him on his race bike doing rides between 100km to 300km.
Moderator: Katie Berndt
VP of Strategy Experience & Research
Katie’s guiding principles include listen generously, seek clarity, and live life to the fullest. She brings more than 20 years of marketing, loyalty program design, and CRM strategy experience to her role at Phaedon. She is known for successfully leading and collaborating closely with cross-functional teams (including analytics, technology, creative, and operations) to design and enhance best-in-class loyalty programs and CRM strategies to improve the end-to-end customer experience. Katie has worked on loyalty and CRM strategy, journey mapping, and research projects for a wide range of verticals, including airlines, airports, consumer lifestyle, energy, financial services, grocery, hospitality, transportation, restaurants, and retail.
Prior to joining Phaedon (previously known as ICF Next), Katie spent nearly 10 years with Transamerica, which specializes in insurance, investments, and retirement. She led marketing teams responsible for driving acquisition, engagement, and retention strategies for the consumer retirement division. Outside of work, Katie enjoys traveling, running, biking, reading, and spending time with family and friends.
Matt Fitzenberger
Director Loyalty

Matt Fitzenberger, Director of Loyalty at Target, leads the Strategy and Design team dedicated to shaping the future benefits, perks, rewards and overall progress of Target Circle and Target Circle 360.

Matt has been with Target for 19 years. Prior to his involvement with loyalty, he has held various roles within Target's Merchandising divisions, focused on Price, Promotion, Space & Planning, as well as enterprise initiatives.

Matt earned his BA in Marketing and Entrepreneurship from the University of St. Thomas in Minneapolis, MN. He resides in a northern suburb of Minneapolis with his wife, Rachel, and daughter, Ella.

Shannon Torabi
Sr. Manager - Digital & Loyalty Growth
Tim Hortons
Shannon Torabi is Sr. Manager of Loyalty & Digital Growth at Tim Hortons Canada. She is responsible for the ongoing operations and continuous evolution of the Tims Rewards program. She also oversees several initiatives to drive engagement within the full Tims digital ecosystem, including new app features and key digital campaigns & games such as Roll Up to Win, Tims Hockey Challenge & the new Tims Word Challenge.
Kirsten Starmer
Director of Marketing
Kirsten Starmer is the Director of Marketing at Pieology Pizzeria, a fast-casual franchise pizzeria chain based out of Irvine, CA. She brings a data-driven approach to drive product innovation aligned with consumer insights and industry trends. She oversees all National Marketing Campaigns, Communications, Digital Strategy, and Loyalty Platform growth and innovation for the Brand.
Rachel Vandewal
Loyalty & CRM Manager – Mobility Marketing
Shell Canada
Rachel Vandewal is a veteran of the oil and gas industry and has been with Shell for over 18 years.  Throughout her career, she’s held various roles with ever-expanding responsibilities across Sales, Operations and Marketing in both the Lubricants and Mobility businesses.  In her current role, she leads the customer loyalty strategy for Shell Go+; Mobility’s best customer program and the #1 Fuels Loyalty Program in Canada, as per Bond Loyalty.  Day-to-day, she collaborates with her team and external partners to sustainably grow fuel, c-store and car wash sales at Shell stations across Canada.
Rachel earned a B.A. in Communications from Brigham Young University.  She resides in Calgary, AB with her husband and two children.
Matthew Hall
Head of Loyalty Planning and Development
Air Canada
Matt has been at Aeroplan for over 16 years, joining shortly after Aeroplan was spun-off from Air Canada. He was a member of the team who transitioned back to Air Canada in 2019, and part of the program relaunch team in 2020.
He is currently responsible for the commercial operations of the Aeroplan program, including program design, the Aeroplan Elite program, air partnerships, everyday partnerships and currency management.
Prior to Aeroplan’s return to Air Canada, Matt held various roles overseeing the Aeroplan partnerships and partner marketing teams.
Nicki Sledd
Marketing Team Lead - CRM and CRC
Nicki Sledd is the US Lead for Enfamil’s Consumer Marketing and Contact Center as part of the larger Reckitt business. She has spent the majority of her career developing and fine tuning Enfamil’s CRM program and recently added learning about and leading the Enfamil Contact Center to her purview. She is located in Reckitt’s Mead Johnson headquarters in beautiful Southern Indiana where Enfamil was born. She enjoys traveling and spending time in the outdoors with her family and looks forward to regaining her golf game soon!
Katie Shempp
Director of Consumer Engagement
Keurig Dr. Pepper Inc.
Katie Shempp is the Director of Consumer Engagement for the Carbonated Soft Drink Portfolio at Keurig Dr Pepper, headquartered in Frisco, TX. She graduated from Miami University in Oxford, OH with a BS degree in Marketing. After graduation she held various roles within sales, category management, shopper marketing and most recently, consumer engagement. Katie, an Ohio native, now resides in Frisco, TX with her husband Peter and two sons, James (12) and Everett (10), where she loves being a soccer and lacrosse mom.
Barb Millette
Senior Director of Loyalty & Gift Cards
Barb is the Head of Loyalty & Gift Cards for Subway and has been with the company for over four years. She has an extensive background in strategically designing, building and managing all aspects of loyalty products and programs, resulting in positive business results.  Prior to her position at Subway, Barb was the Head of Loyalty CRM and Gift Cards at Bloomin’ Brands, building more than a decade of experience in the restaurant industry with previous tenure in the financial services and co-branded loyalty space.  
Jennifer Jones
VP & Head - Enterprise Partnerships and Strategic Development
Royal Bank of Canada
Kimberly Biertempfel
Director of Loyalty and Channel Marketing
The Giant Company
Kimberly Biertempfel has been working in the retail industry for over a decade and has been a team member for eight years. She has supported various functions in marketing and commercial planning including brand management, e-commerce, digital marketing, and loyalty. In her current role as Director of Loyalty & Chanel Marketing, Kimberly leads the team driving the strategy and implementation of the Choice Rewards Loyalty Program, as well as the marketing strategy to bring GIANT's unique commercial programs to life. Kimberly received her MBA from the University of Illinois, specializing in Strategic Innovation and Digital Marketing. She was named a Top Women in Grocery by Progressive Grocer in 2020 and '40 under 40' by P2PI in 2022. 
Dr. Don Smith
Chief Consulting Officer
Don earned his Ph.D. from Florida State University and spent 11 years in academia teaching statistics, modeling and program evaluation. Over the years with Brierley, he has designed and/or contributed to over 150 customer loyalty programs/engagement solutions, and he is author of numerous articles and a regular speaker at industry conferences and workshops. He serves as the Global Consulting Officer for Capillary Technologies and is the Chief Marketing Officer for Capillary’s US and European markets. An avid theater aficionado, his passion for presentation informs marketing data analytics, where he eschews the traditional view in favor of a dynamic storytelling model that brings numbers to life through contextualization and the generation of actionable insights.
Keith McLellan
Group Director of Digital Strategy and Customer Experience
Keith McLellan is the Group Director of Digital Strategy and Customer Experience for Whataburger. He is accountable for digital sales growth, sponsoring digital innovation efforts, building marketing campaigns that drive loyalty and oversees the digital ordering platforms. In his 20 years in the restaurant and hospitality business he has been on teams that have gained industry recognition like in 2014 Nation Restaurant News ranked Whataburger #1 brand in engagement for all restaurant companies on social media. He went on to launch Whataburger’s loyalty program and mobile app and in July 2022, QSR Magazine recognized his team’s work for the fastest growing app downloads in July beating out industry giants like McDonald’s, Starbucks and Panda Express.  Whataburger recognized his team with a Game Changer Award in 2019 for their work launching 3PS delivery.
He is passionate about creating simplicity from complexity and is known for being a strong team builder, mentor, and developer of talent. In his spare time, he loves to fish, read, exercise orange theory and hang out with his wife Elizabeth and their 3 kids Ruthie, Molly and Duncan.
Joe Mays
Director – Loyalty & CX Technology
Frontier Communications

Joe has spent the last 30 years dedicated to transforming the customer experience. He focuses on delivering this experience through exploration, fact-finding and the use of  technology to improve relationships and keep promises…with the ultimate goal of  happier, more loyal & engaged customers.

With Frontier, he leads multiple work streams responsible for growing the customer base and revenue, driving profitability higher, implementing cutting edge tools and technology and building Frontier and its culture into a competitive advantage that serves millions of streamers, gamers and communicators across the U.S.

Joe was formerly with Verizon’s Strategic Evolution team, responsible for helping implement $500M in process improvement ideas across the organization by converting those ideas into realistic and executable plans. Of the many tools, he primarily focuses on the customer journey to lead the viability of any program implementation. Remember Prepaid Phone Cards? Back in the day, Joe managed a $300M Retail, Wholesale & Promotional Card program, helping people connect worldwide.

He is certified in Customer Relationship Management Software through PegaSystems, Program & Project Management, as well as Agile Leadership & Six Sigma. Joe enjoys a wide variety of athletic pursuits, AFTER management of his ongoing ‘honey-do’ list.

Julie Gerola
VP of Consulting

Julie is a data-driven marketing leader, passionate about leveraging customer insights for sustainable business growth. She has deep experience advising leading brands like Citigroup, Marvel, and Sony, focusing on how to harness the power of loyalty data to create hyper-personalized experiences and drive customer lifetime value (CLTV).

With a history of developing innovative loyalty programs that integrate gamification mechanics and leverage data for personalization across all touchpoints, Julie is prepared to equip you with actionable strategies to align departments around a data-driven approach to loyalty, ultimately driving enterprise growth.

Meghan Mulleady
Brand Manager - Loyalty Strategy
The Giant Company
Meghan Mulleady has been a team member since 2012, serving customers through various roles. Currently, Meghan is the Brand Manager of Loyalty Strategy where she implements an ever-evolving loyalty strategy with the support of her dedicated team. Meghan is very passionate about helping others grow and dedicates time to mentoring others and coaching team members through continuing education programs. Education is not her only passion; outside of work Meghan is a devoted member of the Carlisle Theatre Board of Directors. This position allows Meghan to give back in her community through enriching the lives of all ages through entertainment. 
Leah Carder
Team Lead - Website App & Rewards
Leah Carder is a Team Lead, Website, Mobile App & Rewards at Reckitt, a global leader in consumer nutrition, health and hygiene. She is responsible for the digital product portfolio of Enfamil, the number one pediatrician recommended infant formula brand in the US. She oversees the strategy and operations of Enfamil.com, the Enfamil Family Beginnings mobile app, and the Enfamil Rewards program. She is passionate about creating innovative and user-friendly digital solutions that deliver value to consumers and increase the bottom line.
Carly Lee
Director of Membership Strategy & Experience
Circle K
Carly has spent her career building customer growth strategies, programs and experiences to improve engagement, retention and loyalty. She brings together a wealth of experience across consumer marketing, loyalty strategy and omni-channel experience development. She is a dynamic leader who enjoys building teams and developing people by fostering trust, accountability and inclusion in the workplace.
As the Director of Membership Strategy & Experience at CircleK, she leads a talented team that brings data-driven, customer-centric innovation to develop and evolve the Inner Circle member experience. Inner Circle is Circle K’s rewards program and made its debut in June 2023. Since then, the program has expanded into 30 states and is available in more than 4000 locations. Carly drove the program launch across a nation-wide store footprint that’s delighted core customer segments and driven business growth. She and her team are dedicated to making members’ life a little bit easier everyday through connected and personalized experiences across digital & retail touch points.
Prior to Circle K, Carly worked with Fortunate 500 companies to design, build and launch bespoke loyalty programs as a practice lead at Concentrix (formerly known as PK and Lenati). She holds an MBA from the University of Michigan and is an avid mountaineer who believes in the power of outdoors.