Chapter Events

November 21, 2019 / Annual Awards Banquet and Chapter Meeting


4:00 - 4:15 Welcome, chapter business
4:15 - 5:00 Dinner
5:00 - 5:15 Awards presentation: Best Service and Support Analyst and Best Service and Support Technician
5:15 - 5:30 Networking with colleagues
5:30 - 6:45 The Language of Listening: Drive Results and Employee Engagement - Jason Wischer


Maggiano's Little Italy
1901 Woodfield Rd
Schaumburg, IL 60173

Speaker bio and abstract

Jason Wischer

Jason Wischer

Do you want to better connect with the people you work with every day? This thought-provoking presentation will show you how to make powerful connections with your team, your manager, your peers, and even your customers! Come find out how to create the space to improve engagement, how to listen, and how to identify and modify your communication style so it resonates with your audience. You'll leave with ideas and techniques that will allow you to better connect with people to drive engagement, collaboration and outcomes.

Jason Wischer is an IT manager with 12 years of experience in the financial services industry. He volunteers with his local HDI chapter in Milwaukee and has served in various roles leading the local chapter community, including Midwest Regional Director and past chair of the HDI Member Advisory Board. Jason is passionate about helping others achieve their dreams and about creating a positive culture in the workplace.

September 19, 2019 / Chapter Meeting


4:00 - 4:10 Welcome, chapter business, refreshments
4:15 - 5:15 Winter is HERE! Cybersecurity Lessons from GoT - Pam Nigro (HCSC)
5:15 - 7:00 Star Wars & Leadership - The Death Star Was Not Built in a Day - Tom Wilk (Carnegie Mellon)


111 N Canal St, 16th floor Conference Center
Chicago, IL 60606 

Speaker bios and abstracts

Pam Nigro

Pam Nigro, HCSC

Pamela Nigro, MBA, CRMA, CISA, CGEIT, CRISC, is a multifaceted, highly experienced IT Audit and IT Controls leader who brings unique experience with experience with external Big 4 auditing, and cost-effective management of corporate risk and regulatory compliance with the 4th largest health insurance company. She is a subject matter expert in IT Controls, and is the Senior Director of Information Security focusing on the GRC practice at Health Care Service Corporation (HCSC). She is responsible for IT risk and compliance testing for the five Blue Cross Blue Shield plans comprising HCSC (Illinois, Texas, New Mexico Oklahoma, and Montana). Pam is also an adjunct professor at Lewis University in Romeoville, where she teaches graduate level courses on ethics, risk, information security, and IT governance and compliance. Pam is the current president of the ISACA Chicago chapter, and chair of the ISACA Chicago women’s forum. She is also a Distinguished Toastmaster and a frequent speaker at IT Audit, IT Risk, and Cybersecurity industry conferences, as well as local ISACA and IIA chapter meetings.

Security doesn’t stop with building “walls.” Security professionals can become obsessed with adding new, bigger layers of defense. It's rather like how medieval architects enhanced the security of their castles by building additional rings of walls and towers, or as in GoT ‘The Wall’ was built to protect the Seven Kingdoms. Let’s deconstruct the current security landscape and the tools that are used to help protect and fortify your organization’s valuable data. What are the types of threats your organization faces? What are the frameworks and resources (controls) available to help identify best practices for your organization.

Tom Wilk

Tom Wilk, Carnegie Mellon University

Thomas Wilk has over 20 years of experience as a leader in many business sectors including corporate, government, contracting, and higher education. His specialty over the past five years has been working with employees whose performance was struggling under other managers. He has been successful in turning their performance and careers around almost 100% of the time.

We don’t always get a choice to become a leader and when the opportunity presents itself, leadership can be thrust upon us. The Star Wars workshop takes a light-hearted approach to understanding and identifying some of the common leadership styles. Several activities will illustrate the differing styles of leadership and how to use best practices to become the best leader possible. If you aren’t a leader, the workshop will still help you work with the leaders and managers that are guiding you and your team. Small breakout groups will be used to identify leadership styles in the room and other smaller activities will be included to further expand on concepts.

July 24, 2019 / Summer Social Event

Who doesn't love watching baseball on a warm summer evening?

Join us at Impact Field as the Chicago Dogs take on the Milwaukee Milkmen. Enjoy dinner and drinks as you watch the game from the Fan Experience Field Suite, just inches away from the left field warning track. Impact Field was built in 2018 and features many modern amenities.

Chicago Dogs BaseballWhen: Wednesday, July 24, 6:00-10:00 pm
Gates open at 6:00 pm.
Dinner is available from 6:30-8:30 pm.
First pitch is at 7:05 pm.

Impact Field
9850 Balmoral Ave
Rosemont, Illinois

If you're driving, Impact Field is easily accessible from I-294 and I-90. And parking is free!

The park is also accessible via public transportation by taking the either the CTA Blue Line or the Metra North Central Line to Rosemont, then taking the free Rosemont Entertainment Connector Trolley to the park.

Our dinner buffet includes:
  • Vienna Beef hotdogs served with classic Chicago condiments
  • Hamburgers served with lettuce, tomato, onion
  • Grilled chicken breast
  • Kettle chips
  • Baked potato salad
  • Country coleslaw
  • Cookies
  • Coke / Diet Coke / Sprite
Plus you'll get two drink tickets that can be used for alcoholic beverages at any of the bars located throughout the park.

Your ticket also gets you:
  • a Chicago Dogs baseball cap
  • access to a batting cage so you can practice your swing!

May 16, 2019 / Chapter Meeting


4:00 - 4:15 Welcome, refreshments, icebreaker, chapter business, HDI's transformation
4:15 - 5:00 Letting Go of Your Best Talent: A Winning Strategy - Zak Koch (vcpi)
5:00 - 5:15 Networking and refreshment break
5:15 - 6:00 Breathing New Life Into Knowledge Management With Self-Help Technology - Gary Mellott (EasyVista)
6:00 - 6:15 Networking and refreshment break
6:15 - 7:00 Diversity in the Workplace - Hamza Rashid (TEKSystems)


1501 Woodfield Rd, Suite 110W
Schaumburg, IL 60173

Speaker bios

Zak Koch

Zak Koch, vcpi

Zachary Koch is the Vice President of Client Services at vcpi and has been in IT Support for 17 years. Zak started his IT career while serving in the US Marine Corp, and now leads a dynamic team of 90 service and support professionals. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Information Systems Management and multiple certifications from Microsoft, HDI, and ITIL. Zak enjoys sharing his experiences and insight through his membership on several local college advisory boards, participation in HDI and volunteering for community events.

Zak will explain why letting go of your top talent is one of the best things you can do for your team. Even the most successful service desk will lose its best talent. It’s inevitable–but this may not be such a bad thing. The service desk can be a gateway, the launch pad for a successful IT career. Embrace this reality and build a culture that revolves around professional development and self-improvement! 

Gary Mellott

Gary Mellott

Gary Mellott joined EasyVista in 2016 and serves as the Vice President of Sales for the Western US. Gary is responsible for growth strategies focusing on new customer acquisition, existing customer maturity and partner enablement. Gary has over three decades of technology business development experience including being a founding employee of the Help Desk Institute in 1991. He has an additional 18 years of executive leadership experience at two of the industry’s other leading IT Service Management technology vendors.

Hamza Rashid

Hamza Rashid

Hamza Rashid is a diversity lead for Chicagoland and the Midwest region of TEKsystems. Hamza is responsible for working with 10 different markets within the Midwest region to help promote and grow multicultural diversity within the workplace. He has been with TEKsystems for the last 6 years and has been the diversity lead within Chicagoland for nearly 4 years. Hamza will explain various labor trends and the importance of diversity in the workplace for every organization and the benefits that come along internally and externally.
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