Avery Akkineni Set to Headline Dig South on Its 10th Anniversary

By Jordan French Jordan French has been verified by Muck Rack's editorial team
Published on April 28, 2022

Looking for an excuse to visit Charleston, colorably among the most appealing cities to visit in North America? Look no further. DIG SOUTH Tech Summit, the South’s first and foremost event connecting leading global brands to the South’s most scalable startups, today announced its 2022 speaker lineup featuring 74 leading executives, 30 startups and 25 Web3 experts. The Summit provides the contacts, content and capital opportunities mid-market companies and the region’s most scalable startups need to succeed. 

As a special feature in keeping with DIG SOUTH’s role as the region’s leading tech event innovator, DIG SOUTH Tech Summit will launch the first onsite NFT Gallery at a major Charleston event plus the first POAP NFT. Featuring 50+ global artists and curated by Elevation, attendees are invited to peruse the collection, purchase NFTs directly from artists, and download DIG SOUTH’s free POAP. POAPs are digital tokens minted on a blockchain network to commemorate special occasions. They are collected in digital wallets as tokenized experiences that can also activate future benefits. DIG SOUTH’s POAP and NFT Gallery will mark the 10th anniversary of the Summit and unlock special prizes, discounts and benefits throughout the year-long celebration.

Now in its 10th year, DIG SOUTH is the only event purpose-built to grow the South’s digital economy. The Summit invites the region’s top executives, founders, entrepreneurs and leading global brands to convene in Charleston for three exciting days of networking, inspiration and strategic know-how. The 2022 Summit theme is “Resilience.” 

Scheduled for May 11-13 at TD Arena at College of Charleston and other select venues on the Charleston peninsula, the Summit will feature sessions on topics including Web3, Blockchain, DeFi, FinTech, NFTs, DAOs, Crypto, the Metaverse, HealthTech, Sustainable Tech, Transportation, Cybersecurity, Supply Chain, Investment Capital, Social Media, Influencers, AdTech, Video, Gaming, Streaming, Talent Attraction, Remote Workforce, Growth Strategies and more.

DIG SOUTH will also produce its annual Wild Pitch startup event within the Summit on Friday, May 13. Billed as “The South’s Capitol of Capital,” Wild Pitch will feature 31 early to growth-stage startups. Special programs for investors and startups include the Investor’s Lounge, Speed-dating for Startups, Wild Pitch: Mainstage, Wild Pitch: Sidestage and more.

Summit headline speakers include: 

Avery Akkineni, President, Vayner NFT

Avery leads the company’s mission to build long-term strategic NFT projects for the world’s leading intellectual property owners serving brands, celebrities, athletes and associations looking to incentivize and reward brand advocacy and customer loyalty. Avery previously led VaynerMedia’s expansion into APAC, growing a team from 0-150+, opening offices in Singapore, Bangkok, Tokyo, and Sydney, and was awarded SEA Independent Agency of the Year, within 2 years. Prior to joining Vayner, she spent six years working at Google, in both Silicon Valley and New York City. Avery will drive meaningful cultural relevance for others to unlock the potential of one of the biggest technology shifts of our time.

Melissa McGhie Proctor, EVP & CMO, NBA Atlanta Hawks & State Farm Arena

Proctor oversees the day-to-day operations of the club’s marketing, Hawks Studios, live experience and production, brand merchandising, creative services, corporate social responsibility, brand communications and basketball development teams. She also works closely with executive leadership to provide strategy for the organization.

Robert Tercek, Founder & CEO, General Creativity

Robert Tercek is an award-winning author and the world’s leading authority on dematerialization and the virtual economy. He has supervised the launch of new digital services that are used by hundreds of millions of people every day, including:

– The world’s first streaming video on mobile phones

– The world’s largest live educational program on the Web

– The first animated multimedia games for personal computers and mobile

– The first multiplayer online games

Jay Bailey, President & CEO, Russell Innovation Center for Entrepreneurs in Atlanta

Since 2018, Jay Bailey has been disrupting the way entrepreneurship works. Today, Jay is the leader and architect of the largest Black entrepreneurship center in the country. He is challenging the status quo to take inclusive innovation from idea to reality. As he does, he’s helping to ensure equitable opportunities for Black business owners and multiplying prosperity for the Black community.

Tim Minahan, EVP, Business Strategy & CMO at Citrix

Minahan has a proactive role in helping to drive focused strategic initiatives at Citrix and the company’s overall business strategy. In addition, he leads global marketing strategy and operations for the company’s vision of securely delivering the world’s most important apps and data to enable people and businesses to work better. A technology industry veteran who specializes in defining new markets and positioning companies to own them, Minahan has served in a broad range of business leadership roles at leading enterprise software, cloud, and services firms. He most recently spearheaded SAP’s successful transition to the cloud as CMO of the company’s Cloud and Line of Business unit. Minahan joined SAP when the company acquired Ariba, where he was SVP of Business Network Strategy and global CMO.

Additional speakers include:

  • Dan Lehrich, General Manager, Netflix Gaming
  • Melissa Sassi, Director, IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator
  • Nancy Hilliker, VP, Revolution Growth
  • Jason Williamson, VP, Oracle for Startups and Oracle for Research 
  • Carolyne LaSala, Managing Partner/Software, Data Science, Good Growth Capital
  • Carrie Jaquith, Global Head of Product, Abaxx Technologies
  • Jeremy Woodlee, Managing Director, Accenture
  • Ben Davis, CEO, MOONDOG animation studios
  • Matthew D. Pardieck, Managing Principal, Harbour Wealth Management Group 
  • Tony del Fierro, Chief Product & Commercialization Officer, Choice Bank
  • Matt Pierce, Founder + CEO of Immediate
  • Frances L. Webster, CEO, Walrus
  • Nick Jordan, Founder, Smashing Boxes
  • Peter Liu, Managing Partner, Revelry Venture Partners
  • Frost Li, Founder & CEO, Social Chat 
  • Brett Rakestraw, Director of Strategy at Elevation
  • Jason Oates, Chief Business Officer, LiveIntent 
  • Alex Gonzalez, Producer & Host, the Disruptor Studio
  • Jon Parise, Giglabs CNN NFT Collection, Dapper, Flow Blockchain
By Jordan French Jordan French has been verified by Muck Rack's editorial team

Journalist verified by Muck Rack verified

Jordan French is the Founder and Executive Editor of Grit Daily Group, encompassing Financial Tech Times, Smartech Daily, Transit Tomorrow, BlockTelegraph, Meditech Today, High Net Worth magazine, Luxury Miami magazine, CEO Official magazine, Luxury LA magazine, and flagship outlet, Grit Daily. The champion of live journalism, Grit Daily's team hails from ABC, CBS, CNN, Entrepreneur, Fast Company, Forbes, Fox, PopSugar, SF Chronicle, VentureBeat, Verge, Vice, and Vox. An award-winning journalist, he was on the editorial staff at TheStreet.com and a Fast 50 and Inc. 500-ranked entrepreneur with one sale. Formerly an engineer and intellectual-property attorney, his third company, BeeHex, rose to fame for its "3D printed pizza for astronauts" and is now a military contractor. A prolific investor, he's invested in 50+ early stage startups with 10+ exits through 2023.

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