Speakers 2021

Nina Bindel

Nina Bindel

Postdoctoral FellowUniversity of Waterloo, ON, Canada
Nina Bindel

Nina Bindel

Postdoctoral FellowUniversity of Waterloo, ON, Canada

As a post-doctoral fellow at the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) and the University of Waterloo, Canada, Dr. Nina Bindel researches how to maintain Internet security in the future. This includes constructing cryptographic algorithms that are secure even in the presence of quantum attackers and finding weaknesses there-in. She also has been the principal submitter of qTESLA, a quantum-secure digital signature scheme that had been submitted to NIST’s post-quantum standardization effort and advanced to the second of three rounds. Before joining IQC, she received her Ph.D. from TU Darmstadt, Germany in 2018. In addition, Nina has been a research visitor at the lattice program of the Simons Institute at UC Berkeley in spring 2020 and interned at Microsoft Research, Redmond (US), during the summer 2019. https://ninabindel.de/

    Finn Blug

    Finn Blug

    Online Editorada
    Finn Blug

    Finn Blug

    Online Editorada

    Finn joined ada in 2021 and creates editorial content for the digital magazine, the newsletter and the Fellowship. He also manages ada’s social media channels. While studying media and cultural sciences in Düsseldorf and Paris, he became increasingly involved with the new narrative forms of digital media. Aside from his studies, he also gained experience helping to organize the film festival in Düsseldorf and working in the online editorial department of the TV show Neo Magazin Royale. He is particularly interested in the cultural implications of the digital transformation.

      Dr. Jessica Esquivel

      Jessica Esquivel

      Quantum Physicist
      Dr. Jessica Esquivel

      Jessica Esquivel

      Quantum Physicist

      Dr. Jessica Esquivel is an Associate Scientist at Fermilab working on the Muon g-2 Experiment which recently announced it’s exciting Run 1 results, increasing the experiment/theory tension from 3.7σ to 4.2σ. She is one of ~100 Black women with a PhD in physics in the country, the 2nd black woman to graduate with a PhD in physics from Syracuse University, and the 3rd Black woman to hold an Associate Scientist position at Fermilab. Her graduate research focused on studying ghostly particles called neutrinos interacting in the MicroBooNE Experiment using innovative machine learning techniques. Dr. Esquivel is also a recognized advocate for creating just and equitable spaces in physics and focuses on the intersections of race, gender and sexuality in her community engagement efforts. She is a steering committee member of APS-IDEA, co-founder of BlackInPhysics, and part of the Change-Now collective. Dr. Esquivel was also selected as a AAAS IF/THEN Ambassador, and through her work as an ambassador, has appeared on CBS’s Emmy nominated educational program Mission Unstoppable where she discusses the physics behind makeup, and on the Science Channel’s How the niverse Works discussing how neutrinos could be the key to the mysteries of our universe. Dr. Esquivel is a Texas transplant living in Chicago with her wife and three furbabies, Treadaway, Georgie, and Daisy.

        Judith Gerlach

        Judith Gerlach

        Bavarian State Minister for Digital Affairs, Member of the Bavarian State Parliament
        Judith Gerlach

        Judith Gerlach

        Bavarian State Minister for Digital Affairs, Member of the Bavarian State Parliament

        Judith Gerlach (35), Member of the Bavarian State Parliament, chairs Germany's first State Ministry for Digital Affairs since November 2018. At age 33, the law-school graduate was the youngest-ever appointee as a Bavarian cabinet minister, having become the youngest member ever elected to the Bavarian State Parliament as early as 2013. As State Minister, she is pulling all the strings of the Bavarian digital strategy. In addition to driving forward state-of-the-art technologies such as AI and Blockchain, Minister of State Judith Gerlach sees digital administration as an important element in making the state ready for the digital transformation.

          Miriam Meckel

          Miriam Meckel

          Founding Publisher and CEOada
          Miriam Meckel

          Miriam Meckel

          Founding Publisher and CEOada

          Miriam Meckel is founding publisher and Chief Executive Officer of ada. Since 2005 Miraiam has held a professorship in communication management at the University of St. Gallen, and was editor in chief and publisher of WirtschaftsWoche. She served one legislative period as government spokesperson and State Secretary for Media and International Affairs under the Minister President of North Rhine-Westphalia, and she also worked as a consultant for the Brunswick Group for many years. During her time as a journalist and scientist she received the Cicero Speakers Prize in the science category, published numerous books, and was accepted engagements as a guest professor at Harvard University, Singapore Management University and the University of Vienna.

            Milena Merten

            Milena Merten

            Lead Editorada
            Milena Merten

            Milena Merten

            Lead Editorada

            Milena is ada’s Lead Editor and has been on the team since the founding in 2018. She runs the writing department and develops content for ada’s digital magazine, podcast and newsletter. She was previously a reporter for ada and edited the “Innovation and Digital” department of the magazine WirtschaftsWoche. She received her journalism training at the Georg von Holtzbrinck School for Economic Journalism and has contributed to Handelsblatt, WirtschaftsWoche and DIE ZEIT, among others. Milena studied political and communication science in Mainz, Düsseldorf and Davis, California. She is particularly interested in topics involving the interface between society and technology.

              Kimo Quaintance

              Director of Learning & Communityada

              Kimo Quaintance

              Director of Learning & Communityada

              Kimo Quaintance is ada’s Director of Learning & Community. He first worked with ada as an external consultant in 2019, and joined the team full-time in 2021. He has spent the past 10 years consulting on collective learning and technological change to clients such as Facebook, Microsoft, General Motors, Lufthansa, Siemens, the United States Army, and the Royal Opera House in London. He holds a Ph.D. in International Relations from the University of St Andrews in Scotland and has developed curriculum and lectured at the University of Denver, the George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, the University of the German Federal Armed Forces in Munich (Universität der Bundeswehr München), and the Graduate School of the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing.

                Armen Sarkissian

                Armen Sarkissian

                President of the Republic of Armenia
                Armen Sarkissian

                Armen Sarkissian

                President of the Republic of Armenia

                Armen Sarkissian was born on June 23, 1953, in Yerevan.

                EDUCATION
                In 1970 he graduated from n. 114 Secondary School, Yerevan.
                In 1976 Mr. Sarkissian graduated from the Department of Physics of the Yerevan State University.
                In 1978 he completed post-graduate studies at the Chair of Theoretical Physics and Mathematics at the Yerevan State University and was awarded a scientific degree of the Doctor of Science.

                WORK EXPERIENCE
                In 1976-1990 Mr. Sarkissian was Professor of Physics at the Yerevan State University. In the mentioned period of time, Armen Sarkissian founded the Sub-Division for Computer Modelling of Complex Systems at the Department of Theoretical Physics of the YSU.
                In 1984-1985 Armen Sarkissian was first a Visiting Researcher and later Professor at the Institute of Astronomy in the University of Cambridge, United Kingdom.
                In 1986-1992 Mr. Sarkissian continued his professional career as a Research Fellow and Visiting Professor at the Moscow State University, as well as in various universities in Germany, US, Greece, and the United Kingdom.
                In 1991 he was appointed the Chargé d'affaires of the Republic of Armenia to the United Kingdom, later was appointed the Ambassador of Armenia to the UK and served in that capacity until 1996.
                In 1992-1996 Armen Sarkissian was Armenia’s Senior Ambassador in Europe, Ambassador to the European Union, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Vatican, and the Head of Mission of the Republic of Armenia to the EU.
                In 1996-1997 served as Prime Minister of Armenia.
                1998- 2000 Mr. Sarkissian was reappointed as Armenia’s Ambassador to the UK and Vatican.
                In 2000-2013 served as a Special Advisor of the President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and Governor of EBRD, Founding President of the Eurasia House International, Founder and Director of the Eurasia Centre at the Cambridge University’s Judge Business School, Chairman of Global Council on Energy Security (WEF Forum), Vice Chairman, Emeritus of the East West institute (EWI). He also became the Founder of the High Power Annual Conference at the Cambridge University Commission, member of the Euro-Atlantic Security Initiative (Chair of Energy Security), the Founding President of the British-Armenian All Party Parliamentary Group, Board Member of the Global Leadership Foundation (GLF), member of the Dean’s Advisory Council at the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University; member of the Dean’s Advisory Council at the Harris School of Public Policy Studies, University of Chicago; John Smith Trust member, London, UK; Board Member of the Armenian General Benevolent Union, Founder of the Yerevan, My Love Benevolent Foundation, etc.
                In 2001-2013 Armen Sarkissian was a Senior Advisor to British Petroleum, Alcatel, Telefonica, Bank of America Merrill Lynch and other multinational corporations.
                In 2013-2018 Armen Sarkissian was Armenia’s Ambassador to the UK.
                On March 2, 2018, Armen Sarkissian was elected President of the Republic of Armenia by the National Assembly of the RA. The inauguration of the President-elect took place on April 9, 2018.

                  Lieven Scheire

                  Lieven Scheire

                  Comedian, Physicist and Science Communicator
                  Lieven Scheire

                  Lieven Scheire

                  Comedian, Physicist and Science Communicator

                  Lieven Scheire is a comedian, physicist and science communicator.
                  On stage and on television, both in Dutch and English.

                  While studying physics at UGent (Belgium), Lieven founded the comedy group Neveneffecten with his cousin Jonas Geirnaert. Together with Jelle De Beule and Koen De Poorter, they created not only comedy shows but also successful television programmes such as Basta and Willy's and Marjetten.

                  More recently Lieven makes and presents television shows like Scheire en de Schepping (2012-2014 & 2021), De Schuur van Scheire (2015), Kan Iedereen nog Volgen (2018-2019) and Team Scheire (2018-2020). Some episodes of Scheire en de Schepping reached a market share of no less than 50%. Also on YouTube the program remains a big hit. In Team Scheire, Lieven enlists the help of a team of engineers, designers, scientists and programmers, also known as the makers. Together they come up with creative solutions for people who cannot enjoy life to the fullest because of a disability. Lieven also regularly appears on scientific programs in the Netherlands, like De Kennis van Nu and Atlas. In 2019, he won the popular TV quiz 'De Slimste Mens ter Wereld’ (‘The Smartest Person in the World’) with verve.

                  In addition to his television work, you can also check out Lieven live on stage. From the start of 2022, Lieven will be touring again throughout Belgium and the Netherlands with DNA, an entertaining live show about human genetics and how it will change our lives dramatically very soon. He also wrote the DNA book on the same subject, published by Borgerhoff & Lamberigts.

                  With the popular Dutch podcast Nerdland, Lieven and a befriended gang of science freaks create a monthly overview of the most important science news.

                  Lieven has his own sublabel with publisher Borgerhoff & Lamberigts: Nerdland. Books that have appeared are DNA (2019), Fysica (2020) and Insecten (2020) by Lieven Scheire, De Geknipte Genen (2020) by Hetty Helsmoortel and three editions of the Doeboek voor Kleine Nerds (2020 & 2021) by Lieven Scheire, Henk Rijckaert and Hetty Helsmoortel.

                  Lieven Scheire is appreciated for his refreshing mix of science and comedy. He talks about complex subjects in an accessible way, with knowledge and the necessary dose of humour. No one can spell Einstein's theory of relativity, quantum mechanics or Drake's formula out like Lieven Scheire.

                  By the way, you can always wake him up at night for a game of cloud spotting. But only for noctilucent clouds, of course.

                   

                  “The secret Belgian lovechild of Stephen Fry and Dara Ó Briain.”

                   

                  “If nerds are the new hunks then the charming Lieven Scheire was set to win heads and hearts at this year’s Fringe, with his unique non-fiction stand-up. Scheire takes little concepts like, oh you know, Einstein’s’ theory of relativity, and explains them in a way that is not only accessible but also hilarious. If science lessons back at school had been more like this, maybe we would have all paid more attention and be six times smarter now.”

                   
                  www.lievenscheire.com
                  www.nerdland.be

                    Lea Steinacker

                    Léa Steinacker

                    Founder & COOada
                    Lea Steinacker

                    Léa Steinacker

                    Founder & COOada

                    Léa Steinacker is founder and Chief Operations Officer of ada. Prior to 2018 she worked for Wirtschaftswoche, most recently as Chief Innovation Officer. In 2018 the american magazine Forbes named her one of the “Top 30 Under 30” managers in Europe’s media landscape, the same year she was one of the “Top 30 Under 30” journalists named by Medium Magazin. Raised in Germany, Australia and Wales, she studied at Princeton, Harvard and the American University in Cairo before writing her doctor’s thesis on the social impact of artificial intelligence systems at the University of St. Gallen.

                      whurley

                      Whurley

                      Founder & CEOStrangeworks
                      whurley

                      Whurley

                      Founder & CEOStrangeworks

                      whurley is founder and CEO of Strangeworks, a quantum computing startup that makes the power of quantum computing easily accessible and available to all. He is an Eisenhower Fellow, Innovator in Residence for the Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship at the Sloan School of Management at MIT, A Senior Member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), Chairman of the Quantum Computing Standards Workgroup at the IEEE, the first Ambassador to CERN and Society, a regular contributor to TechCrunch on the topic of Quantum Computing, and the co-author of "Quantum Computing For Babies”. Prior to starting Strangeworks he was a Managing Director at Goldman Sachs [NYSE: GS]. He came to Goldman Sachs via the acquisition of his second startup, Honest Dollar. Prior to Honest Dollar whurley founded Chaotic Moon Studios which was acquired by Accenture [NYSE: ACN].

                        Kitty Yeung

                        Kitty Yeung

                        Creative Technologist & Senior Quantum ArchitectMicrosoft
                        Kitty Yeung

                        Kitty Yeung

                        Creative Technologist & Senior Quantum ArchitectMicrosoft

                        Kitty Yeung is a physicist, engineer, artist, fashion designer, maker and musician. She currently works as a Sr. Quantum Architect at Microsoft Quantum Systems. She’s the producer of Microsoft’s quantum learning materials, including the MS Learn quantum modules and the Quantum Learning website; author of comic series Quantum Computing & Some Physics; lecturer at HackadayU and Microsoft Reactor on Quantum Computing. To drive integration between science and art, she also founded a sustainable and STEAM fashion brand, Art by Physicist, and leads the Fashion Hack at Microsoft Prior, Kitty worked as a Manager and creative technologist of the Bay Area Microsoft Garage Program; UX Designer at Intel Maker Group; Research Scientist and Hardware Engineer at Intel Silicon Photonics; PhD in Applied Physics from Harvard University, MSci and BA in Natural Sciences from University of Cambridge. www.artbyphysicistkittyyeung.com