Digital innovation in manufacturing


Manufacturing is typically thought of in terms of an old industry that is people intensive. However, in today’s world, manufacturing is quickly adopting and creating technologies which make it a leading edge industry. This discussion will showcase methods in which Ply Gem is leveraging digital technologies in manufacturing, product development and customer engagement.  

Lee Clark-sellers, Ply Gem

Lee Clark-Sellers has been the Innovation Officer at Ply Gem Industries since 2011. In this role, Ms. Clark-Sellers is taking innovation from merely a catch phrase to a resourceful approach to how Ply Gem does business overall and transitions to a culture that is rooted in innovation. Her three key goals include 1) identification of new trends and technologies through a broad external network, 2) quick prototyping new ideas both internally and with external partners, and 3) incubation of those ideas.

In addition to her work with Ply Gem, Lee is a fellow with the Center for Innovation Management Studies at North Carolina State University, and serves on the Industrial Board of Directors at Duke’s Pratt School of Engineering and North Carolina State University Technology Incubator. Prior to Ply Gem, Lee held roles at North Carolina State University, Bell Northern Research, Nortel Networks as well as several start-ups.


Justin Nifong, Ty Hagler, Digital Ideation

Innovation at Blue cross and blue shield of north carolina

Topics for this talk will focus on how BCBS of North Carolina views its long-term direction and exploring new ways to achieve its desired performance.

Chris Peronto, BCBS North carolina

Chris Peronto is Vice President of Enterprise Strategy and Innovation at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina. He has been with the company for 15 years in a variety of roles and with evolving responsibilities across performance management transparency, strategic planning, business and partnership development and innovation management.

In his current role, Chris leads teams responsible for strategic intelligence, strategic planning, innovation and strategic consulting. Within that work, much of his energy is spent establishing direction and priority for the key areas in which Blue Cross NC will create competitive differentiation and establish sustainable competitive advantage in the marketplace. In support of that position, the enterprise innovation practice within Chris’ group serves as the incubator and accelerator for business solutions to effectively position Blue Cross NC for long-term success. At their core, Chris and his teams promote understanding and build enterprise engagement in the delivery of objectives that will lead the transformation of how health care is engaged, delivered, and paid for through a single-state Blue’s unwavering focus on affordability, quality of care, and exceptional experience.


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Strategic, operational and cultural impacts of digital innovation

While we are beginning to understand some of the technologies that make up digital transformation, and the tools and methods of innovation, these activities create a lot of change and have a significant impact on how businesses run.  Phaedra will lead a session on anticipating the strategic, operational and cultural changes that occur as companies undertake digital innovation initiatives and will provide recommendations on actions to take to prepare your company for these changes.

phaedra boinodiris, ibm

Phaedra Boinodiris is a member of IBM’s Academy of Technology where effectively she is an INTRA-preneur, kicking off internal startups that range from IBM’s first Serious Games and Advanced Simulation program to IBM’s first K-12 program- influencing curriculum in traditional and non-traditional learning spaces through entrepreneurship and social impact. She is keenly and wholeheartedly invested in Tech for Good and Ethics. As a member of IBM’s Blockchain team she is responsible for strategy and engagement.



Using human centered design and customer journeys to bring digital transformation and innovation together 

This talk will focus on the use of human centered design and customer journeys and applying those tools to digital transformations.

Jason Rome, skookum

Jason is Director of Digital Strategy and Customer Experience. Skookum provides end-to-end solutions that help boost efficiency, engagement and earnings.