2018 UtahJS Conference
Friday, September 14, 2018
Jordan Commons Movie Theater

Emily Freeman

Emily Freeman grew up in the “swamp” as Trump lovingly refers to it. With politics in her blood, she chased after her dream of living out an episode of the West Wing. After four years of arguing — pretty much sums up a PoliSci degree — she left school disappointed that campaigns are more about recruiting 20-year-olds to live in poverty than it is to wine and dine Koch brothers.

Her dreams of Aaron Sorkin-level dialogue and Michelin-star dinners dashed, Emily took up ghostwriting. No, those bloggers you read with millions of followers don’t write their own articles. Sorry to disappoint.

After many years of typing, Emily had a slightly-older-than-quarterlife crisis and made the bold (insane?!) choice to switch careers into software engineering.

With no experience at all, she packed her six-month-old daughter, blind dog and a few boxes into her anti-mom mobile of a sports car and drove across the country to attend the Turing School of Software Development and Design in Denver.

Emily completed seven grueling months of code reviews, pair programming and learning Ruby on Rails. After falling in love with Denver, a city as vibrant as she is, Emily decided to stay and currently works as a software engineer at Wazee Digital.

In her (nonexistent) free time, Emily competes as a powerlifter, deadlifting over 265 pounds. Powerlifting has formed the foundation of her work ethic. Her value system is based on 10 principles which include: always show up, smile, appreciate slow progression, ask for help and never, ever give up.

Emily speaks and blogs about technology, culture and team management at emilyfreeman.io and erratically tweets as editingemily.

Kristie Giles

Kristie is a software craftsman at Pluralsight. She enjoys CSS, scalable component libraries, and cat GIFs.

Evan Farrer

Evan Farrer is a Programming Language geek who enjoys taking academic topics, making them approachable, and using them to solve real world problems. He is a strong advocate of using the scientific method.

Ryan Moore

Ryan Moore is a riff wrangling musician by night and a code slinging developer by day (sometimes swap those I guess). Ryan currently works as a senior (what the heck does that mean, right) developer at MX. Ryan wrote an actual thing that compiled and did actual stuff in Haskell one time and is pretty dang proud of that. As far as music goes, Ryan loves free improvisation and atonal music and also has a hankering for more deterministic, tonal tunes. If its loud, whimsical, frenetic or beautifully structured, Ryan will probably love it, whether we're talking burgers, pizza, code or sounds.

Michele Campbell

Michele is a Senior Quality Assurance Specialist at Lucid Software, Inc. She has been working on improving the testing process there for three years. She also speaks Japanese and loves visiting there for vacations. In her free time, she enjoys playing with her pet guinea pig, baking just about anything, and going to live theater.

Dan Crews

Dan Crews is a principal engineer, software architect, and JavaScript fan boy. Starting over a decade ago, he's been anything from sys-admin to a CSS specialist, and he has been hard-core focussed on Node.js for the last few years. He's always seeking a new problem to solve, and a new challenge to overcome.

Peter Aitken

Peter is an agile Ruby and JavaScript developer who spends his days working with the awesome team at Litmus.

By night he can be found thinking of ways to make our community more inclusive.

In between dog walks, swimming and helping with homework, Peter organises the ScotlandCSS and ScotlandJS conferences.

Walter Scott

Walter develops software using JavaScript, PHP, and Python with the great folks at Sharpr. When he's not working, you might find him attending ALL THE MEETUPS or hanging out with his family. He enjoys long walks on the beach and staying out of the rain.

Ryan Walsh

Front End Engineer at O.C Tanner, former Lead Instructor at DevMountain, lover of all things web development, with a devotion to code quality that borders on obsession.

Valeri Karpov

Valeri Karpov is the Platform Tech Lead at Booster Fuels, a prolific contributor to the Node.js+MongoDB open source ecosystem, the author of Professional AngularJS and The 80/20 Guide to ES2015 Generators, and gave the MEAN stack its name.

Cory Christensen

Cory has been a puzzle solver since birth. From Sudoku to Rubik's Cube, you can consistently find him focused on how to solve a problem. Ever since being introduced to programming with R back in 2013, he has viewed coding and web development to be some of the most exciting ways to solve problems. Cory is loves to collaborate with clients to solve their programming puzzles at Atomic Jolt.

Beyond work, you can often find Cory “off the grid” — backpacking, hiking, and traveling with his wife, Melanie. He also loves spending time diving into the Middle Earth universe or jamming on the piano - whether at home or in various jazz performances in Cache Valley.

Ryan Lewis

Ryan H Lewis is an author at Pluralsight and Senior Web Engineer at Expedia. In addition to slinging code, he has also taught developers how to program with JavaScript and Java at the University of Washington and Seattle Central College. Ryan started building websites over 15 years ago to support his bands and record label. After traveling around the world playing music, he brought his talents to the Pacific Northwest.

In his free time, Ryan releases underground Japanese music and open source software from his record label, MeatCube.

Former Talks:

Plumbing the Depths of Handlebars - Node Interactive 2015

The Future of Node.js - All Things Open 2016

Youtube Channel

Jen Luker

Sr. Software Engineer, Mom, Knitter and Spinner (wool, not fidget). Currently working with PHP, ReactJS, React Native, MongoDB, and Yarn (both kinds).

Steven Foote

Hi! My name is Steven and I like building web applications. That's what I've been doing for work for the last 9 years (with the exception of a brief one-year stint as an auditor). For the past 5 years I've been working for LinkedIn, building things like Search, Settings, and now the LinkedIn component library. In 2014 I published a book called Learning to Program, and I enjoy helping others learn the joy of programming. I can also juggle, so no matter what I'll make sure my talk is entertaining!

Shridharan Chandramouli


My name is Shridharan Chandramouli, and I'm currently working at Lucid Software as a senior software engineer. I recently got my Master's degree in Computer Science from the University of Utah and I have been part of a scrum team at Lucid for the last couple of years.

Kevin J Reece

I graduated with a BS in Computer Science from Brigham Young University. In school, I took a special interest in Software Engineering and Machine Learning. Since April 2016, I have worked as a Software Engineer for Lucid. I spent my first year working on Lucidchart, building out new features in Angular2 and TypeScript. After finishing my first year, I was moved to a specialized team responsible for refactoring existing code in order to make it easier for all engineers to write new code. This work has so far included applying consistent code standards and using Dependency Injection more extensively.

Ryan Hightower

A father of four and husband of one, I have been programming since the wee age of 25. An essentialist at heart, I dream of living in a tiny home, off grid– preferably on a beach in Costa Rica– and spending my days paddle boarding and writing code that makes the world a better place. "But how will you be coding while living off grid," you ask? It's a dream. That's how.

Seth House

Seth House is a programming enthusiast who is constantly looking for better ways to architect projects. He has a deep love of JavaScript functions.

Charlotte Chang

Charlotte is a system scientist and tech enthusiast who loves dogs. An organizational design coach by day, she is multi-disciplined in full stack Ruby on Rails development, web-based user experience, and hardware-software integrated product management. She has presented at PyCon Education Summit 2017, AgileDC 2016, Scenic City Summit 2016, CodeMash 2016, and accepted at AgileToronto 2016. Whether it be coding or coaching, Charlotte enjoys a quality high five.

Ethan Garofolo

I have been a professional programmer since 2006. I’ve worked both ends of the abstraction hierarchy, from device drivers to web applications. I love JavaScript, and I’ve recently become somewhat enamored with Haskell. I’ve seen a lot of pitfalls along the way, having wandered into many of them myself.

I really love our field. There’s a strange satisfaction that comes from coordinating the actions of these little electronic minions we work with. I love sharing that joy with audiences and clients.

I used to make Learn All The Nodes which would give someone an idea of what listening to me would be like. :) . The later ones are a bit better.

Katie Kurkoski

Katie is a professional web developer in the Pacific Northwest and a curator for CascadiaFest. She has spoken at CSSConf EU, CSSConf AU, Nodevember and Sassconf. She’s been coding for the web long enough to remember when you could only debug JavaScript through alerts, and the magic of the first browsers to give you color-coded syntax in View Source. She’s built intranets, enterprise and retail sites using HTML, PHP, MySQL, Ruby, JavaScript, jQuery, CSS and Sass. When not in front of a computer, she can often be found making cool things with glass or smashing pots in search of rupees.

Bret Little

Bret is an avid web developer with a background in physics and astronomy. He loves JavaScript and front-end web development. Bret is currently in charge of front-end development at Canopy.

Jonathan Mills

Jon is a Pluralsight author, ASP.NET insider, and international speaker focusing on JavaScript both in the browser and on the server. Jonathan Mills is a JavaScript and Node.js expert working in the mean stack with individuals and companies to help build their technical skills to cope with the constantly changing landscape of software development.

Tim Caswell

Lover of all things good in life, including Family, Friends, Food, and Functional Programs. Technology hacker and teacher.

Currently working as Director of Engineering at Daplie on a mission to bring digital independence to the masses.

Ben Dilts

Ben is co-founder and CTO at Lucid Software, makers of Lucidchart and Lucidpress. He has been writing software since the age of six, and professionally since the age of sixteen.

Brian Barrow

Brian started learning to code 2 years ago to change careers from Supply Chain Management to Web Development. He's currently working at his first Developer job at Signs.com and hosts the FreeCodeCamp SLC meetup.

Josh Holladay

Josh has loved technology ever since he could remember. A career in tech had always seemed out of reach. However, about a year ago he started to explore programming and eventually found a love for design and coding. Early this year he left his sales career behind to brave coding boot camp at The Iron Yard. He's currently a freelance developer looking for his first Front-end Developer role.

Trevor Norris

Trevor Norris began in front-end development, but after a few years he came across Node.js and never looked back. He's been a core maintainer for the last 4 years and is equal parts innovative and troublesome. From the beginning he has been an avid proponent of improving performance. Trevor is currently working at NodeSource where he's supported as a full-time core maintainer.

Dave Smith

Dave is a software engineer working at Amazon in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Previously, Dave led the engineering department at HireVue. He loves challenges involving scale, performance, and human interaction. Dave has worked on projects that range from tiny embedded systems to cloud-based distributed systems.

UtahJS Organizers

Thanks for all your help!