written by: Denise Clark

This year was the 10th anniversary for IT Martini Today, the official pre-party for CIO Tomorrow, which was presented in partnership with TechLife Columbus, Tech Community Coalition and CIO Tomorrow. The filled-to-capacity event took place in the trendy Standard Hall, located in the Short North. Founded in 2008 by John Bishop and Aladin Gohar, this event has become the event for IT professionals to mingle, see and be seen and interact with friends they might not have seen in awhile.

This was the case for Dan Harris, Vice President of Strategy for Minds On. He has been attending IT Martini Today since its inception. “I have established so many great relationships here,” Harris said. “It’s a reunion of old friends.”

Mike Sayre, President and COO of Metcalf & Associates, agreed.“What a great turnout for a terrific event! I caught up with many of my long-time tech friends, and made several new ones as well,” Sayre said. “Columbus has a very vibrant tech community!”

With more than 380 registered attendees, there was a lot of IT talent and movers and shakers packed into the room. Ranging from coders and developers to entrepreneurs and CEOs of start-ups, attendees were able to have fun and talk shop with other like-minded individuals.

Jodie Bare, Smart Columbus Deputy Program Manager with the City of Columbus is impressed with the amount of IT talent in Columbus and the breadth of expertise.“This event demonstrates the number of talented IT professionals we have here in Columbus,” Bare said. “It’s the IT talent combined with the strong public and private partnership we have in our community that helped Columbus win the US Department of Transportation Smart City Challenge.”

Even those attending the event for the first time like Bruce Williams, a Senior Director at thunder::tech located in Cleveland, were impressed with the large crowd and the excitement the crowd generated.“It’s an amazing turnout and tremendous energy,” Williams said. “It’s important for tech folks to step away from the computer and meet each other. This event is a shining example of that in action.”

Lisa Chambers, National Executive Director of TECH CORPS was pleased to represent the organization that benefitted from the raffle.“It’s been an awesome 10 years,” Chambers said. “We were a charity partner in the beginning and are so pleased to be back with IT Martini Today again.”

Relationships were formed and strengthened, business cards exchanged and LinkedIn connections made during the evening. The event delivered on the promise to provide engagement that was meaningful and inclusive.

We are already looking forward to next year’s event!