Special Guest Speaker

Stephan Pyles
Celebrity Chef

Stephan Pyles is a pioneer of New American Cuisine, having been at the forefront of the renaissance in American cooking a generation ago, and is a founding father of Southwestern Cuisine, which dominated the American food scene for two decades.

Chef Pyles, a fifth-generation Texan, has opened 23 restaurants in 6 cities over the past 32 years. His most current, Flora Street Café, has brought serious fine dining back to Dallas and is currently The Dallas Morning News' only 5-star restaurant. It was named Texas' best new restaurant and was nominated for a James Beard Award for Best New Restaurant in America.

Pyles has authored four highly successful cookbooks and hosted two seasons of the Emmy Award-Winning PBS series New Tastes from Texas. He was the first person in the Southwest to win a James Beard Award for Best Chef and was the first Texan inducted into Who's Who of Food and Wine in America. Pyles has cooked for dignitaries and celebrities from around the world, including five American presidents and HRH Queen Elizabeth II. In May, he was inducted into Nation's Restaurant News' MenuMasters Hall of Fame.

Stephan was cuisine consultant to American Airlines for 22 years and has consulted for the Dallas Museum of Art and a host of hotels. He has recently formed a partnership with Benchmark Resorts and Hotels offer consultancy and develop new concepts for future and existing hotels and corporate campuses.

A tireless philanthropist, Pyles is a founding board member of Share Our Strength, an international hunger relief organization and is recipient of the organization's Humanitarian of the Year award. He is life a board member of the North Texas Food Bank and co-founded The Hunger Link, Dallas' perishable food program. Pyles has given $250,000 in culinary scholarships in his name over the past 12 years.

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Adrian Escobedo
Certified ServSafe Instructor and Registered ServSafe Proctor/Audits/Inspector/TABC Register Instructor/TX Food Handler

Adrian Escobedo is a Certified ServSafe Instructors/Proctor/Inspector in English and Spanish. Currently contracted by the American Airline Center to conduct audits for all food establishment. Also, wrote and license his own CFM Certified Food Manager Course with TX DSHS License # 10008 and Food Handler Program TX DSHS License #179.

"My job as an instructor/Inspector is to keep the students engaged throughout the entire class and to obtain all food safety knowledge to keep customers safe and protect your investment. This ServSafe certification is valid for 5 years! Texas Food Handler is valid for 2yr all cities and counties."

TABC Seller-Server 2yr Certification License # 645-731

Adrian Escobedo ensures that every registrant of our course receives detailed and complete information about current TABC rules and regulations. When you register a TABC class on line or in person you will receive the best knowledge about being a responsible Seller-Server. Getting written up for not knowing a regulation isn't something you have to risk.
All classes in English or Spanish in person or online.

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Jessica Frost
Executive Director, Industry Relations at BMI

Jessica Frost is Executive Director, Industry Relations at Broadcast Music, Inc. In this role, she develops and cultivates relationships with industry associations and businesses across the country that use BMI music. Based in Nashville, Frost is a 19-year veteran at BMI.

Frost began her career at BMI in 1999 as a Customer Relations Executive for BMI's licensing team and moved through the ranks holding various positions. Her current responsibilities include representing BMI to various trade associations in the radio, television, hotel, restaurant, bar, wineries, and fitness industries, as well as other business segments that use music across the United States. By creating and managing cooperative partnerships with these associations, Frost is instrumental in educating business owners about copyright law, music licensing and the service that BMI provides to all businesses and organizations that play music publicly. As part of this educational outreach, she is also responsible for sponsoring events that connect BMI songwriters with the businesses that play their music.

Frost currently sits on the board of the Tennessee Association of Broadcasters and the Nashville/Midsouth Chapter of The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. She holds a B.A. from the University of Florida.

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Michael Pollock
Senior Consultant, iFranchise Group

Michael Pollock is a Senior Consultant with iFranchise Group and a franchise professional with a passion for assisting individuals to achieve their career and personal goals through franchising. Having been a former franchisee, as well as working with many franchisors, Michael brings a unique perspective of first-hand knowledge of what does and doesn't work within franchising.

Michael is a frequent speaker at seminars and conferences on franchising, entrepreneurship, and small business ownership. He is also a licensed franchise advisor and is certified by the Franchise Center of Excellence in Dallas as well as The Franchise Center Certificate Program in El Paso. Michael's industry expertise includes facilitating roundtable discussions for the International Franchise Association (IFA), the world's oldest and largest organization representing franchising worldwide. He has also earned the prestigious Certified Franchise Executive (CFE) designation with the IFA.

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Andee Sloot
Financial Advisor, Ameriprise Financial Services

Andee Sloot graduated from Texas A&M University and spent several years in the insurance industry before pursuing a career as a full time Financial Advisor. Her background in insurance laid the foundation to understanding her client's comprehensive financial well-being; as well as the financial well-being of individuals employed through client owned businesses.

Andee specializes in meeting the financial needs of individuals and their businesses. She is experienced in helping individuals in all stages of life plan for their financial futures. No matter what your goals are, you want to make sure all your efforts pay and tomorrow, so you have the flexibility to do what matters most to you. She can help by working with you to build a financial plan tailored to your life. Andee asks purposeful questions and listens closely to your answers to understand you and your priorities to provide you with proactive, goal-oriented advice. Andee is passionate about helping her clients live the full and rich life they have worked towards and is committed to helping them be brilliant.

Andee resides in Dallas, TX with her loving husband, John, and two dogs. When away from the office she enjoys reading a good book, cooking, traveling, and playing golf when the weather is nice. She often volunteers as a coach for The First Tee of Greater Dallas, a non-profit that brings character education through the game of golf to kids in the Dallas area.

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Tal Spirer
General Manager, Dallas Business Unit, Tabit Technologies

Prior to joining Tabit in April of 2018, Tal dedicated his career to the POS technology space, taking on different roles at Retalix, NCR, and Par Technology. He had spent many years running complex projects and sales-related engagements in the retail and hospitality POS space, that gave him unique insight into what was and was not working for restauranteurs from a technology perspective.

Tal understood that the future of restaurant technology lies not necessarily with the technology itself, but by the adaptation of software to consumer-centric needs.

Tal was excited to join Tabit Technologies as the GM of the Dallas Business Unit, with the main goal of positively disrupting the current technological landscape in the restaurant space.

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Nadav Solomon
Founder and COO, Tabit Technologies

Over the past few years, Nadav identified the potential in leveraging mobile technologies to streamline operations and transform the restaurant industry. Together with Barry Shaked, he assembled a strong team of restaurant and technology industry experts, who have brought this solution to market.

Passionate about food, Nadav studied Food Engineering at the Technion and is a Biotech entrepreneur. Previously he worked as a Senior Strategic Consultant at Ernst & Young. Formerly a Lieutenant Commander in the Israeli navy (Hovlim), where he was in charge of command and control systems, Nadav is experienced in running big operations and monitoring complex systems with multiple embedded workflows.

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Larry Fiel
MBA, MS MIS, VP of Marketing, Signature Systems, Inc.

Fueled by passion, dedication and an in-depth experience in marketing and technology, Larry has leveraged almost 40 years of practical knowledge to help raise the bar for excellence in a variety of industries, including hospitality, education, social services and IT. With four academic degrees, an intuitive understanding of inter-personal relationships and a history of proven success, Larry thrives on educating and mentoring others and making order out of chaos.

By exceling in brand creation, development and propagation as well as in strategic marketing, lead generation and marketing communications, Larry has helped foster sustained profitability through increases in revenue and the lowering of both tangible and intangible costs.

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Steve Montgomery
Founder, CEO, and Key Technologist, D6 Labs

Steve has 20+ years developing hardware and software, with a focus on radio frequency devices, low power circuits, and custom user interfaces. Steve started Digital Six Laboratories, Inc., in January 2015 by applying his hard-won expertise to design and produce a highly flexible, long-range, wireless IoT engine that can be used in any number of vertical applications.

Steve served honorably in the United States Navy's Nuclear Power Program where he was selected to be a Nuclear Power instructor. He uses his electrical engineering experience coupled with his business knowledge to advance technology in the IoT space. A key objective of his is to push the IoT industry forward toward functional, scalable, and easy-to-use solutions, which he believes has avoided the IoT industry for too long.

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Norman Couture
Owner, Renegade Chef Consulting & National Sales Manager, Restaurant Activity Report

Norman is a former Executive Chef and Restaurant General Manager; a Business Owner—currently the owner of Renegade Chef Consulting; the National Sales Manager for Restaurant Activity Report; a factory-trained draft beer system specialist; and has over 30 years in and around the food service industry.

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Aaron Mortensen

Aaron has been with hungr since its founding in 2012. Previously he worked in marketing and guest management software for some of the leading tourism and amusement parks worldwide. He took advantage of the early days of computers and was able to graduate with a dual degree in both Marketing and Computer Science by the age of 18.

People have always been important and he spends up to 70 hours per month helping others through volunteer work. Living in San Diego, he spends time with his wife and 2 dogs.

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