Innovate Mississippi Presents

Save the date:
19th annual
Conference on
Technology Innovation

November 13-14, 2018 • Westin Jackson

Join us for networking, inspiration and an in-depth look at Mississippi’s future in technology and entrepreneurship


At breakfast on Oct. 18th, we'll look at the challenges that Mississippi faces in technology innovation and education; at lunch, we'll look into institutional solutions.


Our Wednesday morning programming offers a TED-style look at innovative solutions and inspiring ideas taking place across Mississippi, as well as some critical new initiatives you'll learn about.


After lunch on Wednesday, our programming continues with an exciting look at new ideas and initiatives that are encouraging girls and women to study STEM topics and enter high-paying innovative careers.


Throughout Wednesday we'll offer networking breaks and opportunities in Innovation Alley. Wednesday evening, join us for Wine Down Wednesday. (Sponsors and speakers join us for a special reception on Tuesday.)

Innovation alley

Join us on the mezzanine all day Wednesday, November 14th, for quality time with vendors offering innovative services and/or support for entrepreneurs in Mississippi.


We’ve assembled an exciting group of speakers for the Conference on Technology Innovation this year. From entrepreneurs to educators to economic developers, this group offers a deep look at the challenges facing Mississippi—and how we can take those challenges head on.

Roberto Gallardo speaking at COTI2017

Dr. Roberto Gallardo

"The Rural Digital Divide"
Assistant Director / CRE Specialist at Purdue Center for Regional Development

Matthew Bolian speaking at COTI2017

Matthew Bolian

"Keeping Millennials In Mississippi"
Project Manager at C Spire / London School of Economics and Political Science

Dr. Cristiane Surbeck

"Empowering Women to Get into and Stay in Engineering."
Associate Dean for Academics and Student Affairs at University of Mississippi

John Maynard speaker COTI 2017

Jon Maynard

"Think Small... or Die"
President and CEO at Oxford-Lafayette County Economic Development Foundation

Dr. Phillip Hickman COTI Speaker

Dr. Phillip Hickman

"Radical New Education Required"
Superintendent of Schools and Founder/CEO of MindAble Solutions and K-12 Consultants, author.

Shonda Allen Conference speaker

Dr. Shonda Allen

"Women in STEM"
Associate Director for the Center for Computation Chemistry at Jackson State University and CEO of First Mississippi, a non-profit committed to STEM education and entrepreneurial methods in K-12.

Dr. Sarah Lee

"Getting Women Into Coding"
Assistant Clinical Professor and Director of Undergraduate Studies in the College of Engineering at Mississippi State University.

Lisa Kemp - speaker at Conference on Technology Innovation

Lisa Kemp

"STEM and Entrepreneurship"
Chief Science Officer for Reactive Surfaces, a Hattiesburg-based company that blends biotechnology and material science.

Tim Mask - COTI speaker - Maris West and Baker

Tim Mask

"Brain Drain Legislation"
Tim Mask is President of the creative content and marketing firm Maris, West & Baker.

Tracci Schultz - Conference speaker

Tracci Schultz

"Women in STEM"
Vice President of FedEx Freight IT, leading her team through the largest IT transformation initiative in the history of FedEx Freight.

Luncheon Keynote:
"Beyond the Spark"

Dr. Lou Marciani
National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security

Everything begins with a spark of an idea, but what counts is what you do to keep the fire burning. Whether you are an entrepreneur in a startup or an intrapreneur in a larger organization, turning that spark into a successful venture requires grit and determination.

Dr. Marciani recounts his experience in building the National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security (NCS4) at the University of Southern Mississippi and looks at how institutions play a vital role in Mississippi’s innovation ecosystem.

New Venture challenge Pitch Competition

Tuesday, October 17
1:00 pm

Be a part of our annual “shark tank” event which awards cash prizes in three categories: Pre-Revenue, Post-Revenue and Student.

First Place: $3000
Second Place: $2000
Third Place: $1000

(Total cash and in-kind is over $25,000.)

On Wednesday at 11:00 a.m. see the winners give their pitch again to the full room!

Registration and sponsorship

Our goal is to make the Conference on Technology Innovation affordable for both individuals and corporate sponsors. Please see the items below for details on pricing and registration.

exhibitors & event sponsors

$1500 and up

  • Technology Champion Sponsorship ($1500)
    Exhibit space on Innovation Alley, company logo in program and 8 tickets to all events.
  • Coffee & Contacts Sponsorship ($2500)
    Exhibit space on Innovation Alley, company logo in program, special networking event in your booth and 8 tickets for all events.
  • Innovation Leader Sponsorship ($5000)
    Exclusive event sponsorship, premium booth space on Innovation Alley, 10 tickets (reserved table) for all events.

entrepreneurs & executives

$250 and up

  • Entrepreneur Sponsorship ($250)
    Tickets for two and recognition in our program

  • Executive Partner Sponsorship ($550)
    Tickets for four and recognition in our program


$75 full conference

  • Wednesday 7:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
  • Breakfast
  • Tech Sessions
  • Pitch Competition
  • Breakouts
  • Luncheon


This conference is for you! We’ve scheduled special opportunities to meet new people, learn more about colleagues and improve the dialogue on technology innovation in the Magnolia state.

Speaker and Sponsor Reception
5:30 PM

Sponsors and speakers join us for a special networking reception in downtown Jackson.

Wednesday Breakfast
8:00 AM

Join us for keynote speaker Dr. Roberto Gallardo to start the full day of programming.

Coffee & Contacts
(Multiple Times)

Network and visit vendors between sessions with themed breaks including coffee, local pastries and cake pops!

Wine Down Wednesday
4:00 PM

Wine Down Wednesday offers one more chance to make connections and visit Innovation Alley.

our sponsors

Innovation Leaders

Technology Champions

USM - Technology Champion sponsor
Advantage Business Systems - sponsor
Mississippi Polymer Institute - Technology Champion sponsor
The Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship - Technology Champion sponsor


BKD - Executive Partner


Kopis Mobile - Entrepreneur
A Marketing Mind - Conference sponsor
The MaxBit - conference sponsor
Madison County Business League - Entrepreneur sponsor
School Status - Conference sponsor
Maris West Baker - conference sponsor
Madison County Economic Development Authority - sponsor
Quality Printing - sponsor
ReactiveSurfaces sponsor of Conference on Technology Innovation
Matthew Holleman - sponsor



what our attendees say...

This conference is a fantastic opportunity to bring together the best thinkers in Mississippi and take a look at where and how we really want this state to grow in the 21st century.
said this i hope


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