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Finalists Revealed for Milestone 20th Annual ITA CityLIGHTS Awards

Monday, August 5, 2019   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Gary Hotze
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Public voting opens Monday, August 5 and closes Friday, August 16


CHICAGO, IL – August 2, 2018 – Today the Illinois Technology Association (ITA) announced the 50 landmark industry leaders being recognized as finalists at The 20th Annual CityLIGHTS Awards. To commemorate the anniversary, the program is presenting a Toast of Chicago Tech award to celebrate winners from years past. The ITA CityLIGHTS Awards, with presenting sponsor Deloitte, is the premier annual event that celebrates and honors achievements from the local tech community. 


The winners for each category, with the exception of the Toast of Chicago Tech, are determined by a compilation of the judges’ scores and voting by the public. Voting is open Monday, August 5 through Friday, August 16 at 


“This year’s finalists are outstanding representatives for this banner moment in Chicago tech and two decades of CityLIGHTS Awards,” said ITA CEO Julia Kanouse. “It’s incredible to celebrate twenty years of the awards. The long history of the program demonstrates the maturity and vitality of our ecosystem as a whole and is a testament to the strength of the awards as an indicator to future success.” 


Congratulations to the 2019 finalists: 


CityLIGHTS Industry Champion: Presented to the company or individual who actively and consistently supports the growth of the Illinois technology industry through leadership and/or collaboration.

·       Ethos Talent

·       Solstice

·       Victor Ciardelli, CEO & Founder, Guaranteed Rate

·       John Higginson, CTO, Enova

·       Megan McCann, CEO & Founder, McCann Partners


CEO of the Year: Presented to a CEO who has successfully scaled their company through outstanding leadership, ability to attract and retain talented resources, financial accomplishments and the implementation of strategic growth opportunities. 

·       Al Goldstein, CEO & Co-Founder, Avant 

·       David Kalt, Founder &. CEO,

·       Shawn Riegsecker, Founder & CEO, Centro

·       Sanjay Shah, Founder & CEO, Vistex, Inc.

·       Doug Waggoner, CEO, Echo Global Logistics


Industry Disrupter: Presented to the company that has developed or introduced an ingenious, non-traditional, and innovative product or service that has significantly disrupted its industry. 

·       Ascent RegTech

·       Envoy Global

·       Narrative Science

·       NuCurrent

·       Payformance Solutions


Lighthouse: Presented to the growth-stage company, (more than $25 million in revenue) that, through innovation in products, services, or business approach, has grown to become a serious competitor in the marketplace. 


·       Enova

·       RedShelf

·       Showpad

·       Tempus


Prominent Woman in Tech: Presented to a preeminent woman or individual identifying as female in the local industry who has championed technical innovation to drive the growth and success of her organization.

·       Amy Bourne, COO, Brad’s Deals

·       Lin Classon, Head of Public Cloud, Ensono

·       Reem Jaghlit, VP of Product Engineering, ActiveCampaign

·       Marina Malaguti, Director of Data Engineering, Jellyvision

·       Sara Rossio, Chief Product Officer, PowerReviews


Outstanding Company Culture: Awarded to the technology company that has instilled a high-performance culture in their workplace by encouraging employees to take their career to the next level, fostering diversity and inclusion, and are committed to positively contributing to the community. 

·       Devbridge

·       G2

·       Solstice

·       TopstepTrader

·       Vibes


Rising Star: Presented to the company with the strongest potential to emerge as a leader in the technology industry ($5 to $25 million in annual revenue).

      ·       Apervita, Inc.

·       Maropost

·       Perkspot

·       TRUCE Software

·       YCharts


Technologist of the Year: Presented to the individual whose talent has championed true innovation, either through new applications of existing technology or the development of technology to achieve a truly unique product or service. 

·       John Barnes, CTO, Infutor Data Solutions

·       Tej Brar, Chief Product Officer, Guaranteed Rate

·       Henrietta “Hettie” Dombrovskaya, Associate Director Database Architecture, Braviant Holdings

·       Brian Garofola, CTO, Vibes

·       Ben Houston, CTO, ThreeKit


Toast of Chicago Tech: Presented to an individual or company who after winning an award at CityLIGHTS continued on to make an impact in the Chicago tech community through successfully led companies, development of a new or innovative service, championing for peers and the community as a whole.

·       Braintree

·       Cleversafe

·       Grubhub

·       i.c.Stars

·       Jellyvision

·       Origin Ventures

·       Relativity

·       Sprout Social

·       SPSS

·       Trading Technologies


Discover who wins by attending the ITA CityLIGHTS Awards ceremony on Thursday, September 12 at Morgan Manufacturing in Chicago. Tickets and tables are available for purchase at or contact Derrick Davis at 


Thank you to the 2019 presenting sponsor: Deloitte; premier partners: Hyde Park Angels, Madison Dearborn Partners, OneSpan and Silicon Valley Bank; VIP reception sponsor: Lantern Partners; opening reception sponsor: Paylocity; wine sponsor: West Madison Wealth Management; and photobooth sponsor: Swift Prepaid Solutions.

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