And in no particular order of greatness...

The Progress Africa Conference

were thrilled to have a speaker line up second to none this year. Please select the speaker to view their bio's.

Angela Peacock


Angela Peacock

CEO - People Development Team


Angie is the dynamic Chair of the People Development Team, an award-winning global training organisation, specialising in leading-edge virtual delivery.

As facilitator and challenger to senior corporate teams, she coaches and mentors executives from Financial Services, Pharma, Media and Technology sectors.

She is an inspirational speaker and conference host. The People Development Team offers key interventions in the area of implicit and explicit bias, talent, inclusive leadership, gender balance, women's development, men's development, leadership, strategy and culture change via a variety of platforms.

Angie is an advisor to boards in the UK, Europe, US, Asia and South Africa looking to take new approaches to Inclusive Leadership, Management, Culture and Talent.

Her strategic insights and realistic solutions on how to 'move the inclusion dial', by working directly in the Talent Management, Diversity and Organisational Development space is sought after globally.

Her gender-specific workshops combine impression management, confidence building, career development and strategic programmes.

Whether speaking to 1,500 delegates at a corporate conference, on a retreat with a team of executives, or delivering leading-edge workshops virtually - she is renowned for her energy, positivity and outcomes that create tangible results.

Her organisation leads the field in global virtual training via WebEx, Live Meetings, E-Learning and Telepresence.

Brian Bowman


Brian Bowman

Principle Product Manager - Progress® Software


Brian Bowman has been working for Progress Software for over 20 years.  He has performed database tuning and disaster planning for all sizes of customers around the world.

Brian started in Technical Support in the United States and was a manager for Progress in the European Technical Support Center. 

He has also worked in product development and in the Global Field Operations team as a Systems Engineer supporting Progress customers focusing on deploying and managing environments, Software as a Service (SaaS), Cloud Computing and Business Continuity. 

He is currently a Principle Product Manager for database and deployment on the ADP team. 

Brian has a Master’s of Science degree in Business Continuity and Emergency Management from Boston University.

Harold-Jan Verlee


Harold-Jan Verlee

Senior Systems Engineer EMEA - Progress® Software

Pre-sales/technical solutions consultant with over 20 years of industry experience leading teams to define complex software solutions and benefits that match client's business needs.

As a Systems Engineer, Harold currently supports the Progress Sales team by architecting and positioning Progress OpenEdge Application Development products, DataDirect connectivity for cloud and on-premise data-sources, Platform as a Service (PaaS) offerings through the Progress Pacific platform and Corticon Business Rules.

Harold is specialised in the Corticon Business Rules solution at Progress following the acquisition of Corticon Technologies in November 2011. He is responsible for liaising with new, existing customers, partners and (Cloud) service providers throughout EMEA to understand business needs, help define and present solution offerings and drive revenue opportunities.

Harold has been with Corticon for more than 6 years before joining Progress in 2012 with prior roles in IT Development, Partner Support, Marketing, Business Development and Presales Consulting for various international IT software vendors.

Harold lives in the Netherlands, is married with 2 children and speaks 4 languages.

Jesse Davis


Jesse Davis

Senior Director of Research & Development - Progress® Software


As Senior Director of Research & Development, Jesse is responsible for the daily operations, product development initiatives, and forward looking research for Progress|DataDirect.

Jesse has spent nearly 20 years creating enterprise data products and has served as an expert on several industry standards including JDBC, J2EE, and DRDA. 

Jesse holds a bachelor of science degree in Computer Engineering from North Carolina State university.

Justice Malala


Justice Malala

Newspaper Columnist & Political Analyst


Award-winning newspaper columnist and political analyst Justice Malala is a man with his finger on the pulse of current affairs. He is well known to thousands of viewers as the political commentator for eTV and his commentaries in print media for The Times newspaper and Financial Mail magazine have an even wider fan base.

Initially a reporter for The Star newspaper in the early 1990s, Justice shot through the ranks and now heads up Avusa's (formerly Johncom's) stable of 50+ magazines. He is a widely read writer and his work has appeared internationally in newspapers such as The Guardian, The Independent, Forbes, Wall Street Journal and The Observer. Malala has won awards for his novella, 'Before the Rains Come', and helped produce award-winning television series Hard Copy I and Hard Copy II.

Justice's astute analysis of where we've come from and where we're going provides invaluable political and financial insights on the future of South Africa and her neighbours.

Justice Malala's sharp commentaries provide a blueprint to successful strategies.

Justice tailors his corporate presentations to be relevant to the industry he will be addressing.


"After the Noise: Making a difference through South Africa politics 2014 - 2030"

Karen Tegan Padir


Karen Tegan Padir

CTO - Progress® Software


As Chief Technology Officer, Karen Tegan Padir, a Progress senior vice president and 20-year software industry veteran, is responsible for defining and delivering the company's technology strategy, innovation and vision, reporting to President and Chief Executive Officer Phil Pead.

Padir joined Progress Software in September 2012 as senior vice president and business line executive for application development, the company's largest product line. Under her leadership, the Progress® OpenEdge® development platform was revitalized and major new versions incorporating advanced mobile and business rules capabilities introduced.

Padir joined Progress from EnterpriseDB, where she was most recently executive vice president, products & engineering, and was responsible for all product functions. During her tenure there, Padir tripled the product portfolio, which yielded 146 percent growth in new customers and 100 percent revenue growth. Prior to EnterpriseDB, she was senior vice president of software infrastructure & MySQL at Sun Microsystems. As one of the founding members of the J2EE team, she was critical in the growth of the entire middleware business, comprising MySQL, Glassfish Application Server, Identity, Access and Roles Management, Directory Server and the SOA Portfolio. Under her leadership, Glassfish became the industry's most used Java EE compatible application server.

She holds a Masters Degree in Business Administration and a Bachelors of Science Degree in Computer Science from Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI). Padir serves on WPI's board of trustees.

Libor Laubacher


Libor Laubacher

Principal Technical Support Engineer, Rotterdam - Progress® Software


Libor started using Progress (6.2) in 1995/6 initially as DBA/Sysadmin of an end-user in Czech Republic, then moved to Progress Technical Support in 2001 and been working there since.

His areas of expertise are RDBMS, OE Management & Replication, AdminServer/AppServer/WebSpeed, tuning & configuration and lately VMware, including training & consulting.

He's been a guest speaker on several Exchange(s) since 2004.

Mark Armstrong


Mark Armstrong

Vice President & Managing Director, EMEA Operations - Progress® Software


Mark Armstrong is Progress' Vice President and Managing Director for EMEA. Progress (NASDAQ: PRGS) is a global software company that simplifies the development, deployment and management of business applications. Armstrong is responsible for leading the company's sales, marketing, services and partner activities throughout the region.

Armstrong was named to his current position in 2013. He joined Progress in 2008 and was most recently a regional vice president in the UK and EMEA and had previously held other global management roles within the company.

With more than 25 years' of technology and software sales experience, Armstrong brings a wealth of expertise to his role, including in the areas of strategic business development and the development of new market opportunities. Prior to joining

Progress he was sales and marketing director at LexisNexis Visualfiles and also served as Managing Director of B2BSolutionsOnline.

Armstrong is based in the United Kingdom.

Mike Fechner


Mike Fechner

Director, Consultingwerk Ltd.


Mike Fechner has started using Progress and OpenEdge in version 5 twenty four years ago. He has ever since supported Progress application partners and end customers in adopting the features of latest OpenEdge and Progress releases to enhance the capabilities and future-proofness of existing applications. With his framework design skills he set ground for the development of many successful OpenEdge applications.

He is specialized in the object orientation, OpenEdge GUI for .NET, user interface flexibility and application architecture. With his team at Consultingwerk he supports OpenEdge developers during the modernization of existing and the development of modern applications and has developed tools that are being used at Progress application partners to ensure productive and successful adoption of the .NET UI and OERA. He helped customers to introduce tools such as OpenEdge Mobile, OpenEdge BPM, Corticon and Rollbase.

Mike is a well-known and active member of the international OpenEdge community. He is board member of the German PUG and the committee of the EMEA PUG Challenge.

Ramesh Loganathan


Ramesh Loganathan

Managing Director & VP (Products), India - Progress® Software


Ramesh leads Progress Software's largest product development laboratory, at Hyderabad, India. He has over 23 years of experience in distributed systems engineering and R&D leadership. In his current capacity, he was instrumental in transforming the Hyderabad facility from an Offshore Development Center to a Center of Excellence model, developing frontline products including the common cloud services platform. Prior to joining Progress, Ramesh was Vice President of product engineering and middleware technologies at Pramati. He led the engineering effort of Pramati's renowned J2EE Server and Studio products.

Ramesh holds a Masters degree in Electrical Engineering - Control Systems from Anna University. He is a passionate technology evangelist. He is a regular speaker at tech seminars and conferences and an active member of the IT industry organizations NASSCOM and ITsAP, where he helps with product and technology initiatives. He has co-authored the book "SOA Approach to Integration".

Ramesh is adjunct faculty at IIIT-H, ranked 2nd for Computer Science in India, teaching courses on Middleware systems since 2002. Ramesh is on the Academic Council at IIIt-H, and on governing councils of the Incubators at IIIT-H, BITS-Hyderabad and IIT Hyderabad.

He is also active in the Hyderabad startup ecosystem - driving early stage startup events for TiE-Hyderabad. He also helps organise monthly Startup Saturdays - a networking platform for budding technology entrepreneurs. He is also part of a thinktank group - Hyderabad4Innovation, comprised of 14 key leaders in industry and tech education in Hyderabad who are looking at ways to nurture and grow tech innovation in the city.