Kent, Ohio, United States

Kent State University
2017 Final Schedule



Kent State University Library
1125 Risman Drive, Kent, OH 44243
3rd Floor

All sessions will take place on the third floor of the University Library. Free parking is available behind the library in the R6 lot on Eastway Drive across from Manchester Hall

Speakers & Presenters
Marcia Lei Zeng, Ph.D.
Professor of Library and Information Science
Kent State University

Marcia Lei Zeng, Ph.D., is a professor of library and information science at Kent State University. She holds a Ph.D. from the School of Information Sciences at University of Pittsburgh (USA) and M.A. from Wuhan University (China). Her major research interests include knowledge organization systems (taxonomy, thesaurus, ontology, etc.), Linked Data, metadata and markup languages, database quality control, multilingual and multi-culture information processing, and digital libraries for cultural objects. Her scholarly publications consist of more than 80 papers and five books, as well as about 200 national and international conference presentations, invited lectures and keynote speeches. She was the P.I. and Co-P.I. of two National Science Foundation's (NSF) National Science Digital Library (NSDL) projects. She currently is the P.I. of an IMLS funded Linked Data project. In 2014 she was elected inaugural chair of the Dublin Core Metadata Initiative (DCMI) Advisory Board and also was recognized by Kent State University for Outstanding Research and Scholarship. In 2016 she was a Fulbright Scholar Award winner to Taiwan and received the President’s Faculty Excellence Award from Kent State President Beverly Warren. 

Edwin K. Morris
President and Founder
Pioneer Knowledge Services

Edwin K. Morris is the president and founder of Pioneer Knowledge Services (PKS), a non-profit organization with a charitable Knowledge Management (KM) purpose. PKS, the first of its kind in the USA, serves to educate the general public about KM and to offer services to nonprofits to build KM capacities and awareness. PKS's mission is to inspire cultures that value knowledge. Morris earned his B.A. in Speech Communications while serving on the student government, in Pennsylvania’s Army National Guard and while working as a morning radio show host on WFSE-FM, Edinboro University’s student-run radio station. While serving at Aberdeen Proving Ground in the US Army he earned a graduate certificate from Central Michigan University in General Administration in 2004. He earned a Master of Science with a KM concentration from Kent State University in 2012.;

Elizabeth Kargbo
Manager, 211 Information and Referral
Info Line, Inc.

Elizabeth Kargbo is the Manager, 211 Information and Referral, for Info Line, Inc., in Akron where she has been employed for nearly 16 years. She oversees all aspects of the program including supervising staff, services, the database, software and phone systems, social media, and special projects. The 2-1-1 Summit database consists of approximately 1,200 agencies and over 9,300 services, and the 2-1-1 Lorain database contains about another 350 unique agencies and 2,700 services. Last year, her staff assisted 65,000 callers in Summit County and 13,000 in Lorain County. Also, community agencies and the pubic visited over 105,000 times and over 25,000 times. Recently, Elizabeth spearheaded projects such as revamping the websites, a 2-1-1 Lorain County App, and 2-1-1 OnDemand Text service for Summit County.

Paul Sherman

Paul Sherman has worked in user experience since the days of dial-up. He is the founder of ShermanUX, a user experience research and design consultancy. He has conducted user research, usability testing and UX design for mobile, web and desktop in many domains including accounting; banking; e-commerce; financial planning and portfolio management; healthcare; mobile gaming; mobile device hardware and software; network, server and cloud application security; tax preparation; and travel, among others. He also creates and teaches graduate courses in user experience research and design at Kent State University, where is he an Assistant Professor and Coordinator for the User Experience Design master’s. During the 2000s he was Senior Director of User-Centered Design at Sage Software in Atlanta, Georgia, where he led efforts to redesign the UI and workflow for Peachtree Accounting and several other business management desktop and web-based products. Before that he was User-Centered Design Manager at Intuit. In the 1990s he was a Member of Technical Staff at Lucent Technologies. Paul received his Ph.D. in 1997 from the University of Texas at Austin.

Jonathan Morgan
Director of Emerging Experiences
Balance Product Development

Over the past two decades, Jonathan Morgan has navigated the ever-changing landscape of experience design with the heart, passion, and resourcefulness of an entrepreneur. His guiding principle is that deeply engaging and innovative design is not defined by a technology or material, but rather by the unique value it provides the people using it. He believes the only reliable strategies for uncovering this value is through a human-centered approach, where generative research drives strategic decision making. Jonathan has led multidisciplinary research, design and development teams for some of the world’s most iconic brands. Much of his most recent work focuses on contextual experiences – from Industry 4.0 IoT initiatives, to physical and digital home automation products, to highly complex surgical devices. Jonathan is the Director of Emerging Experiences at Balance Product Development as well as a key advisor to several tech startups. He has his MS in Information Architecture and Knowledge Management - UX Design - from Kent State University and currently serves in an advisory role for multiple universities to assist in the evolution of business school curriculum to include more immersive, design–centered methodologies. 

Leah Ogonek
User Experience Designer
Westfield Insurance

Leah Ogonek is a User Experience Designer currently working for Westfield Insurance. She has an undergraduate degree in Anthropology from Cleveland State University where she focused on Central America and Archaeology. She also has a graduate degree in Information Architecture & Knowledge Management from Kent State University with a focus in Information Use. Leah resides in Cuyahoga Falls with her husband and son.

Darren Hood
Manager of User Experience and UX Champion
Bosch Automotive Aftermarket

Darren Hood is extremely passionate about all things UX, holding 20 years of experience in human-computer interaction, with the last 14+ years focusing on UX and CX. He currently serves as a Manager of User Experience and UX Champion for Bosch’s Automotive Aftermarket division in the U.S., also supporting various UX initiatives in EMEA and Asia-Pacific. Darren also serves as an adjunct professor for Kent State University’s UX Design Master's program, teaches UX seminars and workshops for Grand Circus in Detroit, and is in the process of designing UX-related software tutorials for the media division of O’Reilly Publishing. He holds a M.S. from Syracuse in Information Management, a M.S. in User Experience Design from Kent State, and a grad certificate in Educational Technology from Michigan State. He's currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Educational Technology and Design.

Shari Thurow
Omni Marketing Interactive

Shari Thurow is the Founder of Omni Marketing Interactive, a full-service website usability, information architecture (IA), and search engine optimization (SEO) firm. She has optimized, architected, and designed websites since 1995. She currently serves on the Editorial Advisory Board of the ASLIB Journal of Information Management (AJIM). She also served on the Board of Directors of the Information Architecture Institute (IAI) and User Experience Professionals Organization (UXPA). Clients include the National Cancer Institute, Huffington Post, ABC News, WebMD, Encyclopedia Britannica, Expedia, Home Depot, Fisher Price, Angie’s List, Sony Music, and Microsoft. Shari is the co-author of When Search Meets Web Usability” which shows how to bridge the gap between search-engine results pages and your website. She is also the author of Search Engine Visibility.

Todd Bertsch
Evolve Creative Group

Todd Bertsch, Owner/President of Evolve Creative Group, is a leader in web design and digital marketing with over 20 years’ experience in these fields. Todd is also an award-winning web designer, author, educator and lecturer, and speaks regularly throughout the region on various web-related topics. He also serves on several nonprofit marketing committees. Todd holds a BFA from The University of Akron in graphic design and is an advocate for strong UI/UX.

Marc Majers

Marc Majers ( has worked in application, software and website design for over 20 years, won some industry awards, and ultimately gained skills in e-commerce, user research, interaction design, digital strategy, conversion rate optimization (CRO), and usability testing. As a user experience designer, he takes pride in ensuring that the product he is creating efficiently meets the needs of the user - he likes to understand the challenge, come up with options that solve the problem, and discover the improvements needed prior to launch. Marc is passionate about technology, always striving to bring 100% to the work that he does, and his goal as a designer is to develop not just digital products that solve business problems but ultimately create a positive memorable experience that evokes a user to take action and return later.  He recently graduated with a Master of Science in Information Architecture & Knowledge Management with an emphasis in User Experience Design from Kent State University. He is Google Analytics certified and became a Certified Usability Analyst (CUA) from Human Factors International. In his spare time, Marc likes to DJ weddings, compose piano compositions, write (check out his book Don't Fear The Forward: The Secret to Building Successful Web Design), volunteer (he started a non-profit called Leading Hands Through Technology) and teach (he is currently an adjunct professor at the University of Akron).

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