The Washington DC CTO Summit - 2014

If you manage engineers, learn from and connect with your peers at the Washington DC CTO summit. At this full day, single track summit, learn how other companies successfully build and run their engineering teams. The DC CTO Summit is co-organized with Dan Gordon (Technology Partner, Valhalla Partners) and we appreciate the amazing help from Josh Szmajda, Zvi Band, Lawrence Fitzpatrick, Mike Subelsky, Nathen Harvey, Lucas Nelson and John Paul Ashenfelter amongst others - without whom we'd never have been able to pull this together.

The CTO Summit Series was created to allow CTO’s and engineering leaders to learn from and connect with their peers. It’s not hard to find a gathering of technologists debating front end frameworks, containerization or the relative benefits of Scala, Clojure and Go. Finding a group of geeks talking about the hard parts of building a successful engineering team like hiring, developing an engineering culture and managing (your team and your boss) is more challenging.

Each summit is a full day, single track event for learning from and connecting with your peers that are building and running engineering teams.


  • 8.00am Registration and Breakfast
  • 8.45am Welcome
  • 9.00am Keynote: Lawrence Fitzpatrick, President Computech, Inc. - What every CxO should know, but doesn't
  • 9.30am Keynote: Mike Brown, CTO comScore - Doing more with what you have
  • 10.00am Keynote: Josh Szmajda, CTO Optoro - Visualizing Agile
  • 10.30am Break
  • 11.00am Zvi Band, CEO Contactually - Managing Product Debt
  • 11.20am Dan Gordon, Technology Partner, Valhalla Partners - Presenting to a Non-Tech Audience
  • 11.40am Ed Kim, VP Engineering Social Tables - Hats are the new Leadership
  • 12.00pm Shazia Sami, CEO Ottomate - Hiring and motivating the technical team
  • 12.20pm Dylan Richards, CTO Modest - Practicing Failure: Gamedays on the Obama Campaign
  • 12.40pm Lunch
  • 1.30pm Larry Cynkin, CTO Cobrain - Challenges facing the non-founder startup CTO
  • 1.50pm Sinan Ozdemir, Founder/CTO of Tier5, Adjunct Professor at The Johns Hopkins University - Pivot Fast and Pivot Hard
  • 2.10pm Alden Hart, CTO Ten Mile Square Technologies - RESTful Hardware - Hardware Mashups go Mainstream with IoT
  • 2.30pm Paul Barry, CTO OrderUp - Keeping The Patient Alive
  • 2.50pm Andrew Willis, VP Technology, CustomInk - Continuous Delivery: The Things I Wish Someone Told Me
  • 3.20pm Break
  • 3.40pm Andrew Montalenti, CTO - Asynchronous & Fully Distributed: a new communication model for teams
  • 4.00pm Robi Sen, CSO, Department 13 - Everything is not awesome
  • 4.10pm Mike Subelsky, Cofounder/CTO Staq - Developing Talent the Old Fashioned Way
  • 4.30pm Laura Ferguson, CTO Create - Stacks of Stacks Panel (with David Ashman, Chief Architect Blackboard, Patrick Peak, Director of Web Technology U.S. News & World Report, Josh Szmajda, CTO Optoro and Joshua "jag" Ginsberg, Principal Python Architect Celerity)
  • 5.15pm Next steps
  • 5.20pm Open bar
  • 7.00pm Event ends


Aerospike: Sponsored by Aerospike. The fastest NoSQL database. Now open source. The worlds first flash-optimized, in-memory, NoSQL database.


Tickets Prices in USD

Additional Information

My name’s Peter Bell. I used to run engineering for a number of startups in New York - including General Assembly. In March of this year I organized a Startup CTO summit in NYC along with Lucas Nelson from Gotham Ventures. I thought 20 friends would show up. We ended up selling out the venue, with 110 engineering leaders and with presentations from the CTO’s of companies including Gilt Groupe, MongoDB, Tumblr, Birchbox, Warby Parker and

This fall, we’re running conferences in San Francisco, Washington DC, New York, Boston, Melbourne and Sydney. Attendance to the event is strictly limited to engineering leaders. No recruiters, non-technical co-founders or other business stakeholders will be allowed (we enforce this policy strictly and will refund tickets of anyone we can’t admit). That said, we’re not hung up on job titles. Some of our best attendees have titles like CEO or VP Product. As long as you can perform a technical code review, know how to submit a pull request and are interested in better hiring, managing and organizing developers, we can’t wait to meet you!

The call for papers is now closed. If you’d like to support the event, there are a range of sponsorship packages available - just email for more information.