AICON Curators 2021



Applied AI

Kathryn Harkin, Rachel Bland & Sam Beni

Business of AI

Alexandra Mousavizadeh & Tom Gray



Dr Kathryn Harkin

Dr Kathryn Harkin

Senior Manager at Allstate Northern Ireland

Kathryn is Senior Manager in the Artificial Intelligence Centre of Excellence in Allstate Northern Ireland

Read more

Kathryn is Senior Manager in the Artificial Intelligence Centre of Excellence in Allstate Northern Ireland with over 20 years’ experience working in technology. After completing a PhD in Geophysics from University College Dublin, Kathryn worked as a Software Engineer and then progressed through various project, delivery and engineering management positions. At Allstate she plays a lead role in the development of the AI and Machine Learning Strategy for Allstate NI, the development of AI skills across the enterprise and also leads the AI CoE Customer Success team. She maintains strong links with local universities and is a member of Ulster University Computer Employer Advisory Board as well as a member of the Economic Advisory Group advising on the skills agenda for the Northern Ireland Economy.
Alexandra Mousavizadeh

Alexandra Mousavizadeh

Partner at Tortoise Media

Alexandra Mousavizadeh is a Partner at Tortoise Media, the slow-news media company founded by James Harding.

Read more

Alexandra Mousavizadeh is a Partner at Tortoise Media, the slow-news media company founded by James Harding launched in April 2019. Alexandra is the Director of the Tortoise Intelligence team which specialises in global and industry indices and data analytics. Creator of the groundbreaking Global AI Index launched in December 2019, and the recently released Responsibility100 Index. She has 20 years’ experience in the ratings and index business and has worked extensively across Central Asia, the Middle East and Africa. Previously, she directed the expansion of the Legatum Institute’s flagship publication, The Prosperity Index, and all its bespoke metrics based analysis & policy design for governments. Prior roles include Sovereign Analyst for Moody’s with specific focus on Russia, Kazakhstan, Georgia and Armenia from 1995 – 2007. From 2013-14 she also covered Sub-Saharan Africa. Alexandra became head of Country Risk Management, EMEA, Morgan Stanley’s London office prior to taking up the role as CEO of ARC Ratings, a global emerging markets based ratings agency. She holds a degree in Economics and mathematics from the University of Copenhagen.
Rachel Bland

Rachel Bland

Head of Data Analytics, Kainos

Rachel is a proven analytics leader and the head of data analytics at Kainos.

Read more

Rachael is a proven analytics leader with an exemplary track record of shaping, leading, and delivering large-scale data projects and across a range of industry sectors including financial services, healthcare, pharmaceuticals, utilities, and retail. Passionate about using data to solve complex problems, generate business value and informing strategy.
Tom Gray

Tom Gray

Group CTO and Director of Innovation at Kainos Group plc

Tom is a 30-year tech veteran and is Group CTO and Director of Innovation at Kainos Group plc.

Read more

Tom is a 30-year tech veteran and is Group CTO and Director of Innovation at Kainos Group plc. Tom is an active investor in local and national tech startups and holds a number of non-exec director positions in tech startups. Tom Gray graduated from Queen’s University Belfast, holds a BSc. in Computer Science, and has studied Innovation Management at MIT Sloan. Tom has been the driving force behind many of Kainos’ most innovative and successful customer and staff initiatives, including HealthHackEU, Kainos AppCamp, CodeCamp and Code4Derry. He founded and curates the content for the annual BelTech conference, which has a strong focus on emerging Digital technology. From 2016-2018, Tom was Director of Digital Catapult NI, established Digital Catapult’s NI presence and was responsible for the development of the Immersive Lab. Tom is Deputy-Chair of the MATRIX ICT panel and a member of the CCEA Regulatory Advisory Panel. He is Chairman of the Ulster University Industrial Liaison Board, and holds a number of non-exec director positions in tech startups. Tom is past-Chair of the IET in Northern Ireland.
Sam Beni

Sam Beni

Applied AI Lead at Tech Nation

Leading Tech Nation's Applied AI growth programme, part of the UK Government’s AI and Data Sector Deal.

Read more

A Technology Futurist with the goal to simplify the complex, Sam Beni has a deep passion for emerging technologies in particular Artificial Intelligence (AI). He has coined the term “Complex AI” and is a subject matter expert and international speaker in this field. He has an extensive background in cutting-edge technology firms and he has previously co-founded multiple DeepTech companies. Sam is now leading Tech Nation’s Applied AI growth programme, part of the UK Government’s AI and Data Sector Deal created to support the UK’s most promising founders who are applying AI in practical areas and creating real-world impact.