Robert Tolmach has worked as an architect, investment banker and entrepreneur. He is president of Glasses for Humanity, a sustainable nonprofit organization dedicated to combating vision loss. He was previously President of New York City Expo - Ltd., while it was working on the development of a New York City Expo aboard a reconstructed Staten Island Ferry in Hong Kong, and a Managing Director of Zebra Fund LLC, which manages a $45 million fund to invest in properties with environmental issues. Before that, Mr. Tolmach was senior real estate manager for James D. Wolfensohn, Incorporated. While there, he handled private real estate investments of an affiliate of the firm, including Queens West, an 8 million square foot mixed-use development across the East River from the United Nations in New York City. While there, he also provided real estate advisory services to the clients of the firm and of Fuji Wolfensohn International, a joint venture with the Fuji Bank. Prior to 1986, he was a principal at Arquitectonica International Corporation, a nationally prominent architectural firm, and headed their Texas office. During that time, he also developed real estate in Texas. Mr. Tolmach received his BA in Architecture and Fine Arts, and his Bachelor of Architecture, from Rice University. He has lectured at the business schools of Rice University and Columbia University and has been published in Urban Land, the journal of the Urban Land Institute.
An international speaker and respected author, Bruce's primary focus through the years has remained steady: rapid application of web applications. He specializes on putting highly effective teams on the most productive and most appropriate technologies.
Author and Speaker
Bruce is an internationally recognized author, with nine titles published in at least 10 languages. His Bitter Java book reached number nine on Amazon's list of all books; his Better, Faster, Lighter Java book won a prestigious Jolt award, and his books Beyond Java and From Java to Ruby books helped power the Ruby on Rails explosion from within the Java community. His titles, spanning a more than a decade, include:
- Comprehensive Database Performance
- Objects for OS/2
- Bitter Java (JavaOne best seller; reached #9 overall on Amazon)
- Bitter EJB (JavaOne best seller)
- Better, Faster, Lighter Java (JavaOne best seller and Jolt winner)
- Spring: A Developer's Notebook
- Beyond Java
- Ruby on Rails: Up and Running
- From Java to Ruby: Things Every Manager should Know
Bruce's articles include a fifteen article series called Crossing Borders (for Java developers, but about programming languages and techniques beyond Java), another called the Secrets of Lightweight Development (on tools, process, and frameworks for lightweight development), and twenty other independent articles.
Bruce is an international speaker, who regularly presents at The Server Side Symposium in the United States and Europe, JavaZone in Norway, the wildly popular NoFluffJustStuff programming symposium, and many others. His keynotes include talks on managing a programming career, effective lightweight development, and using open source software instead of established industry standards to reduce complexity and improve productivity.
The Developer and Consultant
Bruce worked at IBM for 13 years, where he served a variety of roles spanning development, customer implementation, consulting, sales, and test. This great variety prepared him to work in leadership roles, and gave him an all-encompassing vision of the software development picture. Bruce worked on database software, object oriented infrastructure, development tools, and IBM's Java platform. He served on IBM's prestigious certification board, to help IBM define, implement, and certify the skills required to do application development for IBM's customers.
In 2000, Bruce started his consulting practice, and was an independent consultant until joining WellGood. Initially, his practice focused on getting failing customers off of the elephantine EJB framework to a cleaner, more productive foundation. His customers have worked with the exploding Spring framework since its inception, and with the dominant Hibernate framework since 2003.
Since early 2005, his sole focus has been on Ruby on Rails. He has written two books since moving to Ruby full time: Ruby on Rails, Up and Running, and From Java to Ruby. These books fill niches that are important to the exploding Rails framework and the Ruby language: experienced developers new to Ruby, and managers who need to understand how Ruby can help them, and whether to make the switch.
CHIEF COMMUNICATIONS OFFICER
Jill Golden has been setting standards in communications for over twenty years. After beginning her career as a fashion journalist, she worked her way up the ranks of Madeline de Vries, a leading PR agency. Next she spearheaded a multi-faceted consumer outreach program for Laura Ashley, as the company hit its stride in its American heyday. Then she launched public relations for Coach. The success of this campaign led to a series of promotions culminating in a position as director of corporate, crisis and consumer communications for a $2.3 billion Sara Lee Corporation operating group. While in this position, she developed the underlying strategy for Wonderbra public relations in the U.S. and hired the agency which broke numerous records with over 400 million positive impressions. Then she joined Liz Claiborne Inc. where led the creation and implementation all publicity programs for this multi-brand portfolio and increased annual press for the entire company 380% in the first year. For the next five years she served as Vice President of Corporate Communications at Ann Taylor, Inc. where she supervised a consumer outreach program leading to an over 20% increase in brand awareness for target consumers with this well-established brand. Most recently, Ms. Golden spent the last four years as Vice President of Public Relations at Movado Group, Inc. where she built the PR team from the ground up and established the company as a PR category leader with industry-leading visibility including: Oprah proclaiming a Movado Watch as her "favorite" on-air and in her magazine; Caroline Kennedy presenting a Movado Woman of the Year Award and Gwyneth Paltrow guest-designing a watch.
Clinton Begin is an internationally recognized author, speaker, and developer who is the creator of the renowned iBATIS persistence framework. With a formidable presence in both the enterprise and open source communities, Clinton has assumed leadership positions at industry greats such as ThoughtWorks, Microsoft and Stanford University. His experiences have spanned a broad range of business and technical domains. At every level, Clinton has effectively used innovative software methodologies and open source software in successful software projects. Clinton uses multiple languages--Java, .NET and Ruby-- to develop large-scale distributed applications and integrate of disparate systems.