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A celebration 40 years in the making is coming to Willis Tower on September 19, 2024!

In 1984, four QA Managers met for lunch in downtown Chicago to share information about their QA activities and discuss common challenges.  They all agreed that bringing together QA professionals would contribute to the growth of the QA profession.  The first official CQAA meeting was held September 1984 at BMO/Harris Bank with 15 participants.  Since then, the Chicago Quality Assurance Association has grown to over 2,500 members. 

Join us for a look back on 40 years of the Chicago Quality Assurance Association, highlighted by a panel discussion on “The Impact of AI on Software Delivery and Quality”.  After the panel, we will have social time and refreshments, time to enjoy each other’s company and look forward to another 40 years!

Register here!


3:00 - 3:30 Onsite registration at Willis Tower (311 S. Wacker Drive, Chicago)

3:30 – 3:45 Welcome and Looking Back at 40 Years

3:45 – 5:00 AI Panel Discussion

5:00 – 6:30 Reception with Drinks and Appetizers

The Panel

Like the Internet a generation ago, widespread adoption of Artificial Intelligence has reached an inflection point. To some, AI means large language models and ChatGPT. To others, it means breakthroughs in data processing and security threat detection. If you’re old enough, it may still mean the threat of having cybertronic overlords on the day Skynet became aware.

Nowhere is the impact of AI’s growth been felt more strongly than on the business of creating software itself. LLMs can write code for many algorithms as cleanly as some developers, and identify test cases a QA analyst would likely have missed. What does all of this mean for our place in the software industry, our professional responsibilities, the very existence of our jobs?

Learn and interact with our panel of industry and academic experts as we dive deep into those questions and many others which will impact how we build, deliver and use software for years to come.

Our panel will be moderated by Paul Herzog, Vice President of CQAA

Register here!

Our Panelists

Paul Edlund, Chief Technologist - Central Region, Microsoft

Throughout his career Paul has spent much of it figuring out ways to make complex technical problems understandable for everyone. In many ways, one of the hardest skills to master is navigating the complex intersection between business, ethics and technology. Paul has sat at this intersection for much of his career. He’s had the opportunity to speak about using technology for good at places like the United Nations, TED Talks, multiple webcasts and large events across the globe.

Most recently, Paul is the Chief Technologist for Microsoft’s central region. In this role, he focuses on applying Microsoft’s long term Research & Development to their enterprise customers. In addition, he guided customers through Microsoft’s overall cybersecurity and datacenter design strategies. More recently, Paul was in a role within Microsoft to focus solely on cybersecurity and identity strategy in conjunction with one of Microsoft’s largest and most strategic customers, Accenture. Paul started with Microsoft in 2007 and has held multiple roles within the company.

Clare Dussman, Director of Digital Trust, United

Clare Bridget Dussman is Director of Digital Trust for United Airlines and one of Product-Led Alliances Ones to Watch List for 2023. At United, she is focused on enabling customer choice for data and enabling digital privacy and responsible use of artificial intelligence across our 50+ Billion USD Global Airline. Prior to United Arilines, Clare has worked at startups and consultancies across Europe and the US. She studied at Cambridge University for her Masters and University of Missouri's School of Journalism for her Bachelors.

As Director of Digital Trust, she leads groups focused on privacy technology and responsible use of artificial intelligence. She’s operationalized a Responsible Artificial Intelligence risk process which enables consistent controls within the software development lifecycle from beta to automated testing in production. For dozens of AI use cases at United, Clare and her team are a balancing partner that champions quality within infrastructure, redaction, and testing.

Brad Purcell, Senior Director of Business Development, Tricentis

Brad is the Sr. Director of Business Development at Tricentis, where he serves as a strategic leader in the SAP practice. With a career spanning over 25 years in quality assurance, Brad has been instrumental in guiding companies through their digital transformations, promoting a quality-first philosophy. His visionary leadership has been crucial in transitioning the industry from a "user does" to a "user decides" approach when considering AI in quality assurance.

Brad’s experience in AI for quality assurance includes a focus on machine learning and autonomous automated test creation. He has been a key figure in educating executives on the future of testing, helping them understand and leverage the benefits of gen-AI, which he considers a revolutionary force in the quality assurance industry.

As a seasoned speaker, having shared his insights at notable conferences such as the SAP BTP Conference, SAP Sapphire Orlando, and SAP Sapphire Barcelona. His contributions continue to shape and invigorate the technology landscape, making him a thought leader in AI and quality assurance.

Dr. Mohammed Abuhamad, Assistant Professor, Department of Computer Science, Loyola University Chicago

Dr. Mohammed Abuhamad is the director and founder of the AI for Secure Computing Research Lab (AISeC) and serves as a faculty member in multiple labs including Cybersecurity Lab and Software and Systems Lab. Dr. Abuhamad’s research focuses on AI system security, information security and privacy, responsible AI, and data analytics. He holds two Ph.D. degrees in Computer Science from the University of Central Florida and in Electrical and Computer Engineering from INHA University, South Korea. 

Dr. Abuhamad’s current responsibilities include directing the AI for Secure Computing Research Lab at Loyola University Chicago, where he leads projects on vulnerability analysis of deep learning systems, secure AI models, and IoT malware analysis, and other projects. His work involves developing and evaluating novel AI models for various applications, investigating the robustness of AI models, and analyzing the threat landscape against AI and computer systems. He also teaches courses on Big Data Analytics and Deep Learning and supervises graduate students in their research projects related to AI and cybersecurity.

Our Sponsors

CQAA would like to thank our generous sponsors in their support of making our 40th Anniversary event happen.  Please visit their tables at our event and their sites!



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