The brightest and most provocative minds across two converging segments — design and technology — will offer short, conversational TED-style talks and panels to inspire collaboration and partnerships among brands, specifiers and installers.


Donald H. Ruggles, AIA, NCARB, ICAA, ANFA
CEO, Ruggles Mabe Studio

Donald H. Ruggles, AIA, NCARB, ICAA, ANFA, is a practicing architect and CEO of Ruggles Mabe Studio, an award winning boutique residential architecture and interior design firm based in Colorado. Founded in 1970, the firm is dedicated to the idea that beauty can improve the lives of its clients.

During the past two years, Don has been traveling the U.S. and Europe giving presentations on his first book, “Beauty, Neuroscience & Architecture: Timeless Patterns & Their Impact on Our Well-Being,” which suggests beauty can and does make a difference in our lives, including improving many aspects of our health. To learn more, please visit www.rugglesmabe.com and https://neuro-architectology.com/.

*Photo courtesy of Paul Abdoo

David VanWert
President, VanWert Technology Design Inc.

David VanWert is President of VanWert Technology Design Inc. a technology design firm specializing in low voltage systems design, consulting, engineering and management. VanWert Design’s team primary focus is the design of audio/visual, home automation systems, private theaters, security, and lighting control systems for properties throughout North America.

Founded in 2010, VanWert Technology Design was formed to meet client’s needs for unbiased design services for technology systems without selling equipment. VanWert Technology Design’s systematic approach to the design, specification, and bidding process of low voltage systems has established the company as one the premier technology design and specification firms in North America.

Steven Margulies
Partner, One Lux Studio

Stephen Margulies is a founding partner of One Lux Studio with over 35 years of experience. Stephen has had the opportunity to collaborate with an international roster of architectural clients and world class developers. Considered an industry expert, he is often sought out for his ability to contribute to the design process. Stephen leads global projects and a highly skilled collaborative team of lighting designers. His dedication to design excellence and ability to coordinate within complex teams has led to the successful execution of exceptional projects. His portfolio includes a wide variety of projects that have been recognized through numerous design awards, recognized by the IALD and the IES.

Rob Krug
Senior Security Architect,  Avast Inc.

Rob Krug has been in the network engineering and security space for 30 years, and is currently a Senior Security Architect for Avast, Inc. His background includes extensive work with telecommunications, network design and management, and most importantly network security. Specializing in security vulnerabilities his background includes extensive training and experience in cryptography, ethical hacking, and reverse engineering of malware. His background includes having served in the United States Navy, as well as worked as both a Data Security Analyst and as a Director of Engineering for multiple international service providers and vendors. Rob has designed, implemented, and maintained some of the most complex and secure networks imaginable. And… He collects malware for fun….

Cindy Allen , Hon. IIDA
Editor-in-Chief, Interior Design
Chief Design Officer, SANDOW

Cindy Allen is widely lauded as one of the most influential advocates for the interior design industry. With more than 17 years as editor in chief under her belt, Allen has established herself as a force in elevating the brands importance and exposure—strengthening its credentials as the main ambassador of design while proving it is the vehicle of growth and success for the industry it represents.

Allen received an Honorary Doctorate from the New York School of Interior Design in 2010 and from the San Francisco Academy of Art in 2012. She is a recipient of the 2009 Alpha Award by Alpha Workshops, the 2010 Circle of Excellence Award from IFDA, and the 2015 Beverly Willis Architecture Foundation’s Scroll award. In April of 2019, the AIA honored Cindy with the Stephen A. Kliment Oculus Award. Allen has served as juror for the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Awards and the Gensler Design Excellence Awards, among others, and is a board member for the Alpha Workshops. Cindy Allen is the 2014 Open House New York Honoree and is chairman of the national board of DIFFA (Design Industries Foundation Fighting Aids). 

Ed Gilmore
CEO & Founder, Gilmore’s Sound Advice

Edward R. Gilmore established himself as a successful solo artist, orchestral player, and chamber music recitalist. In 1988 Edward Gilmore, began a parallel career as an audio consultant to a leading architectural and interior design firm which included designing, bidding out and overseeing projects. By 1991, having learned the intricacies of custom installation, Gilmore formed his own full service company—Gilmore’s Sound Advice, Inc. Having been involved in the industry since the advent of audio distribution, the infancy of home theater, witnessing the evolution of the “smart” home and residential control systems, affords Gilmore a broad historical perspective of the industry. Gilmore’s continuing involvement in live musical events at concert halls and recording studios further assures the client that, with this unique perspective, Gilmore’s Sound Advice, Inc. will always provide a superior sounding system befitting any design or aesthetic.


Carl Shenton
Partner, Shenton Architects

Shenton Architects is a design focused New York based practice with experience in residential, commercial and institutional projects of varied scales. The partnership is led by Carl Shenton, RIBA and Emily Shenton, AIA LEED. Prior to establishing Shenton Architects, Carl was a Senior Associate at 1100 Architect for three years, and at Richard Meier & Partners for nine years. During this period he also undertook a series of residential projects for private clients in and around the city.



Kim Michels
President, Electronic Environments

Kim Michels is president of Electronic Environments, a custom installation firm based in New York City. The 33-year-old company specializes in whole-house integration of multiple low-voltage disciplines serving architects, designers, and builders in the area. His original background was in theatrical lighting and staging prior to forming Electronic Environments in 1986. He is a leading voice in the industry as a member of The Guild, a nationwide group of elite integrators, and is a certified Home Technology Association member.


Kathryn Eisberg
Principal, KE Design 

Kathryn Eisberg is an established interior designer based in the New York Metropolitan area. She has designed homes in New York City, the Hamptons, Westchester, and Connecticut. She co-launched the successful MOKAHOME in 2007, and went off on her own to create KE DESIGN in January 2016

Thomas McMahon
Principal, McMahon-Baek Architecture

Thomas McMahon is a principal of McMahon-Baek Architecture, D.P.C.and founding partner of McMahon-Baek Workshop. Prior to forming McMahon-Baek Architecture, Thomas gained experience on a variety of projects: residential and facilities design at various firms, civic and institutional projects with C&G Partners, in London at Foster + Partners working on Tower 2 for the World Trade Center, and most recently in NYC working on high-end residential projects. 



Julie Jacobson
Founding Editor, CE Pro Magazine

Julie Jacobson is founding editor of CE Pro, the leading media brand for the home-technology channel. She has covered the smart-home industry since 1994, long before there was much of an Internet, let alone an Internet of things. Currently she studies, speaks, writes and rabble-rouses in the areas of home automation, security, wellness-related technology, biophilic design, and the business of home technology. Look for CE Pro’s new wellness brand WellScapes launching soon. Follow her on Twitter: @juliejacobson


Chelsie Butler
Executive Editor, Kitchen & Bath Business Magazine

Chelsie Butler has been an editor for various trade magazines in the Atlanta area since graduating from the University of Florida with a journalism degree in 1993. Titles relevant to her current position as the executive editor of Kitchen & Bath Business magazine have included Atlanta Home Improvement, Commercial Construction, Hospitality Construction and Commercial Kitchens magazines, as well as Design:Retail, a KBB sister publication. She has participated in panels at multiple industry events, including Coverings, KBIS and ICFF, and during her time in her current position, the magazine has won two prestigious Azbee awards and one from Trade Association Business Publications International. Besides her career, another of Chelsie’s passions is volunteering at a local animal rescue shelter, which she has been involved with for seven years.

Jason Knott
Chief Content Officer, Connected Brands

Jason Knott is Chief Content Officer for Emerald Expositions Connected Brands. Jason has covered low-voltage electronics as an editor since 1990. He joined CE Pro in 2000 and serves as Editor-in-Chief of that brand. He has been a member of the CEDIA Business Working Group since 2010.

Luis Serrano
CFO, FUNdamentals of Play

Luis is a workshop facilitator, team builder, motivational speaker & life coach. As the CFO (Chief Fun Officer) or FUNdamentals of Play, he is passionate about maximizing human potential through the power of PLAY!  He found FUNdamentals of Play in order to combine FUN with professional & personal development and help high performing teams increase engagement by focusing on the things that matter: emotional intelligence, workplace wellness & creating joyful experiences.