Meet the Inaugural Iowa Tech Connect Cohort Class

DES MOINES, Iowa (June 1, 2023) – The Technology Association of Iowa (TAI) recently announced the 2023 cohort for Iowa Tech Connect, a new talent development initiative designed for early-career tech professionals in partnership with John Deere and EMC Insurance Companies.

“Iowa Tech Connect is truly a unique program that is strategically targeted at a critical inflection point in a technology professional’s career. This program blends the area’s most astute technical leaders with our most promising local talent,” said Joe Riesberg, Senior Vice President, and Chief Information Officer at EMC Insurance Companies. “EMC is proud to support this initiative and help build an even stronger network of technical talent right here in Iowa.”

The interactive, six-month program will focus on providing professional development and guidance led by experienced tech professionals from diverse industries. Twenty-five candidates were accepted into the program and represent companies and organizations from a wide range of industries and markets across the state of Iowa.

“We believe Iowa Tech Connect will have a tremendous impact on talent development, and we are proud to announce this special inaugural class,” said TAI President, Brian Waller. “We are thankful for the partnership and investment from John Deere and EMC Insurance in making this meaningful initiative a reality.”

Iowa Tech Connect 2023 Cohort list:

Alex Boettger

Application Analyst, TruStage

Addelyn Brewer

Business Intelligence Analyst III, Athene

Amanda Calmer

IT Business Relationship Consultant, Farm Bureau Financial Services

Breton Clark

Marketing Coordinator, Technology Association of Iowa

Dobson Douglass

Developer, VGM Fulfillment

Leah Haugh

Staff Software Engineer, John Deere

Kyle Hauswirth

System Engineer, Krause Group

Grant Heckman

IT Systems Engineer, Krause Group

Emma Langston

Talent Acquisition Lead, Lean TECHniques Inc.

Shifali Malhotra

Professional Software Consultant, Lean TECHniques Inc.

Alec McGlasson

Cloud Platform Engineer, EMC Insurance Companies

Joe McNally

Data Engineer, Principal Financial Group

Teresa Middleton

Research Scientist II, Iowa State University

Holton Miller

Embedded Software Engineer, John Deere

Tyler Morphew

Systems Technician II, ITA Group, Inc.

Juan Navarro

Retail Systems Analyst II, Fareway Stores, Inc.

Iris Nguyen

Software Developer, The VGM Group, Inc.

Brandon Niemeier

Sales Development Representative, LightEdge Solutions

Tim Paulson

Senior Data Analyst, Product Owner, Wellmark Blue Cross Blue Shield

Josh Phillips

IT Team Lead, Pella Corporation

Mariya Ruffcorn

Application Analyst III, TruStage

Gabriel Stackhouse

Software Engineer III, GlobalVetLink

Kayla Tan

Data Scientist, revology

Devan Vander Veen

QA Engineer Automated 1, GlobalVetLink

Colin Ward

Industry Specialist, Kingland

Matthew Wharff

Support Analyst, ITA Group, Inc.

About the Technology Association of Iowa (TAI) 

Founded in 1997, The Technology Association of Iowa is a statewide, member-based organization focused on building and uniting Iowa’s technology community. TAI advances the tech industry through engaging programming, premier events, talent development, driving public policy, and fostering a culture of diversity and inclusion to lead Iowa forward. 

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Media Contact:
Nick Donovan, Vice President of Marketing and Communications
Technology Association of Iowa 



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