SDC EMEA 2020 Speakers

Andy Walls

IBM Fellow, CTO and Chief Architect, Flash Systems

Andy Walls is Chief Architect and CTO for IBM’s FlashSystems. He is also an IBM Fellow, IBM’s most prestigious Honor. Andy is a pioneer in enabling MLC flash in the enterprise and has developed an infrastructure for servers and storage which achieves the highest performance while still providing the endurance and availability that the enterprise and data centers require. He was responsible for the Texas Memory Acquisition and defined the architecture for the very popular FlashSystem 840 and 900, V9000 and A9000. He is defining next generation products that can be used in traditional SAN environments as well as the cloud and by emerging workloads. He is widely recognized as an expert in storage and Flash and has designed ASICs, PCBs, firmware stacks and systems. Known as an innovator, he has applied for or filed over 100 patents. Andy has worked for IBM his entire 35-year career and holds a BSEE from UC Santa Barbara.

Javier Gonzalez

Principal Software Engineer, Samsung Electronics

Javier is a Principal Software Engineer at Samsung Electronics, where he founded and leads SSDR (Samsung Electronics Denmark Research). He is a contributor to the Linux kernel and other open-source projects. His expertise is in building new ecosystems for upcoming technologies. He co-authored the Open-Channel SSD specification and currently contributes to the Zoned Namespace standardization in NVMe. He holds a Ph.D in Operating Systems by the IT University of Copenhagen and is a regular speaker at top storage industry conferences

Volker Lendecke

Developer, Sernet

Volker is co-founder of SerNet GmbH in Göttingen, Germany and member of the Samba Team and one of the main developers working on winbind and Microsoft Active Directory integration. Volker is a frequent speaker at SDC Santa Clara and has given a few talks on the AD topic. 

Eran Zwilling

Technical Solution Specialist, Intel Corporation 

Eran Zwilling is a senior Technical Storage Solutions Architect for the Non-Volatile Memory Solutions Group in Intel Sales and Marketing.

He has two decades of experience in technical and business leadership roles, specializing in storage, networking and business development at companies including Apple, Marvel and RADLAN.

Eran earned his MBA from the Coller School of Management, Tel-Aviv University and he’s now working on his research towards a PhD in high-tech firms evaluations, risk hedging and finance at the Guilford Glazer Faculty of Business & Management, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. 

Jamon Bowen

Product Planning Director, Xilinx

Jamon was an early pioneer in the enterprise flash storage market, setting the requirements and bringing the first enterprise flash array to market in 2007 while at Texas Memory Systems (now IBM). He has held board positions at SNIA for the solid-state storage initiative and is involved in the computational storage working group. He is currently the Director of Product Planning and Storage Segment Marketing in the Datacenter Group at Xilinx and has held similar positions and TMS (now IBM), LSI (now Broadcom), and Seagate. He has Computer Science M.S. degree from Georgia Tech, an Electrical Engineering B.S. degree from Colorado School of Mines and started his career as a software developer.

Idan Burstein

Architect, Mellanox

Idan Burstein is the chief architect for Mellanox SoC (BlueField) and responsible for RDMA transport architecture in Mellanox network adapters (ConnectX). Additionally, Idan is representing Mellanox in several standardization working groups such as IBTA and NVMe. Formally, Idan was a chip design engineer in the network adapters group and data scientist.

Simona Rabinovici-Cohen

Researcher and Architect, IBM Research

Simona Rabinovici-Cohen is a researcher and architect at the IBM Research Laboratory in Haifa, Israel. She holds M.Sc. and B.Sc. degrees in computer science, both from the Technion - Israel Institute of Technology. Simona leads the breast cancer pilot in the BigMedilytics European Union H2020 project. In SNIA, she was the co-chair of Long Term Retention technical working group that authored the Self-contained Information Retention Format (SIRF) ISO standard.

Steve French

Principal Software Engineer, Azure Storage, Microsoft

Steve French is a member of the Samba team, and Principal Software Engineer at Microsoft (Azure Storage), and long time maintainer (as well as original author) of one of the more active Linux file systems (cifs.ko), and a frequent presenter at SMB and storage conferences.   He was formerly chair of the SNIA CIFS Working group and co-author of the SNIA CIFS Specification.  Formerly he was File System Architect for the IBM Linux Technology Center.

Or Lapid

Storage Field Apps Engineer, Micron Technology Inc

Or Lapid is a Storage Field Apps Engineer, based in Israel, the “start-up nation,” which historically has been fertile ground for very successful enterprise storage innovators. Or is specialized in Micron’s SSD and NVDIMM products and collaborating with Global Storage/Enterprise OEM’s, Start-ups, and Eco-System partners on SSD architecture, technology and workloads.

Or holds Electronics Engineering Degree and has been working in the Semiconductor industry for 13 years.

Mikhail Malygin

Principal Software Engineer, YADRO

Principal Software Engineer at YADRO, with 10 years’ storage systems design and architecture. Technology expertise in storage, distributed systems, scale-out solutions, operation systems, networks, performance and reliability. Open source contributor. Conference speaker. Leading engineer for YADRO Tatlin (unified storage). Key contributor to Dell EMC ECS (scale-out geo distributed object storage), Dell EMC Centera (purpose-built archive solution), Centera Virtual Archive. Architected Yadro Tatlin storage data protection layer. Yadro Tatlin achieved 500+ petabytes deployment in 2019. Author of 10+ patents and patent application in storage area.

Alex McDonald

Office of the CTO, NetApp and SNIA Technical Council

Alex joined NetApp in 2005, after more than 40 years in a variety of roles with some of the best known names in the software industry. With a background in software development, support, sales and a period as an independent consultant, Alex is now part of NetApp’s CTO Office that supports industry activities and promotes technology & standards based solutions, with a particular interest in storage software. He is currently chair of the SNIA CSI (Cloud Storage Initiative), vice-chair of the SNIA ESF (Ethernet Storage Forum) and co-chair of the SNIA SSSI (Solid State Storage Initiative), and a major contributor to SNIA’s extensive library of web-based education.

Michael Oros

Executive Director, SNIA

Michael Oros is Executive Director at Storage Networking Industry Association, where he oversees the group, industry collaboration and standards work of the organization. Michael brings 20 years of strategy, planning and development experience in IT services and high-tech industry to SNIA. Before joining the organization, Michael held roles at Intel including oversight of technology initiatives and collaboration on open standards, as well as the deployment of storage, backup, and disaster recovery services for the organization. He led the storage and networking components vendors through the biggest I/O transitions of the past decade, while playing a key role in the introduction, adoption and ramp of PCI Express, InfiniBand, OpenFabrics, and various storage/memory technologies in server, cloud, HPC and storage industries. Michael holds an MBA in strategic management, marketing and international business from USIU.

Madhu Pai

Principal Engineer, NetApp

Madhu Pai is a Principal Software Engineer at Netapp and is responsible for architecting and developing solutions in the areas of SAN and NVMe/f. He has more than 20 years of industry experience across various technologies and has built products in Networking, Embedded Systems and Storage.  Madhu holds a MS in Computer Networking from North Carolina State University.

Slawek Putyrski

Principal Engineer, Intel Corporation 

Slawek Putyrski is a Principal Engineer in the Data Center Group at Intel Corporation in Poland where he leads software architecture of the Rack Scale Design technology. He has more than 25 years of industry experience in the software systems architecture and design. Slawek represents Intel in the SNIA Scalable Storage Management work group defining the Swordfish standard. He is also valuable contributor to the DMTF Redfish standard definition. Slawek holds 5 issued US/EU patents and another 20 patents pending. He earned a M.Sc. in Electrical Engineering and a M.Sc. in Computer Science from the Gdansk University of Technology.

Murali Rajagopal

Storage Architect, VMware 

Murali Rajagopal is a Storage Architect in Office of CTO at VMware. He is actively involved in enabling NVMe Technologies at VMware. He has extensive industry experience in area of storage standards in T10, T11, IETF and DMTF. He is inventor of the FCIP protocol. He has a doctral degree in Electrical Eng. from Georgia Tech.

Josh Salomon

Senior Principal Software Engineer, Red Hat  

I am working in Red Hat on Ceph, and I have been working in the storage industry for the last 5 years (in Dell/EMC ScaleIO and Red Hat). I have more than 20 years experience in application development, including vast experience in development and architecture of enterprise grade distributed applications.

Leah Schoeb

Senior Developer Relations Manager, AMD

Leah Schoeb is a Sr. Developer Relations Manager at AMD focused on system-level platform architecture for AMD's storage ecosystem.  She has over 25 years' experience in helping systems companies with performance engineering and optimization, market positioning, benchmark evidence creation, and guiding industry standards development for system, virtualization, containerized, and data solutions.  She has served in leadership roles for performance architecture for a wide variety of major companies, including Rubrik, VMware, Sun Microsystems, Dell, Intel, and Amdahl. An active participant in standards work for the Storage Networking Industry association (SNIA).  She earned a BSEE from the University of Maryland and an MBA from the University of Phoenix.  She is a member of the Flash Memory Summit’s Conference Advisory Board and the organizer of the Annual Update series of presentations.

Shachar Sharon

Senior Member, Technical Staff, NetApp 

Shachar Sharon is a senior member of technical staff with NetApp, Senior Software Engineer working for more than a decade in the storage industry. Prior to NetApp he has been developing storage software at Elastifile, PrimaryData, and Infinidat.



Alex Shpiner

System Architect, Lightbits Labs  

Alex Shpiner is a system architect in Lightbits Labs, a startup developing cloud infrastructure including networked storage. From 2013 until 2018 he held a position in the system architecture group of Mellanox Technologies, focusing on network-wise QoS-related features in switches and NICs. In addition, he has 6 years of experience in IDF signal corps, working on various telecommunication projects for the defense industry.

He holds a B.Sc. in Computer Engineering and a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering, during which he researched topics in the fields of computer networks: congestion control, switch scheduling, network processors and networks on chip. He also received a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree from the faculty of Industrial Engineering and Management. All the degrees are completed in the Technion-Israel Institue of Technology. He also co-authored patents and research papers, two of which received best paper award.

Esther Spanjer

Director, Channel Business Development EMEA, MicronTechnology Inc  

Esther Spanjer is Director of Business Development EMEA for Micron’s server DRAM and enterprise SSD products. With more than 25 years of experience in the flash and enterprise industry, she has gained valuable knowledge about the requirements for memory-based storage and server solutions in datacenter applications. She has authored more than 30 articles in international publications and conference proceedings, and is a frequent speaker at industry events, including Flash Memory Summit, Cloud Expo, Storage Networking World, and previous editions of the Storage Developers Conference.

Eli Tiomkin

VP, Business Development, NGD Systems  

Eli has spent his career developing and driving business and sales for over 20 years. He has experience with storage companies like M-Systems, STEC, StorOne, and Western Digital. He has been in Sales or Business Development at many companies that were at ground level and helped them all to successfuly growth.


Aviad Zuck

Researcher, Technion  

Aviad is a researcher at Technion's Computer Science Lab, working with Prof. Dan Tsafrir. His research interests are in the intersection of new storage technologies and data security. Aviad received his M.Sc. and a Ph.D. from Tel Aviv University and has worked over the years in several leading storage groups in industry, including IBM, Microsoft, and PMC-Sierra.