Inspiring Innovation With Data & AI: Announcing the Finalists for the 2022 Databricks Data Team Visionary Award

The annual Databricks Data Team Awards recognize data teams who are harnessing the power of data and AI to deliver solutions for some of the world’s toughest problems.

Nearly 250 teams were nominated across six categories from all industries, regions, and companies – all with impressive stories about the work they are doing with data and AI. As we lead up to Data and AI Summit, we have been showcasing the finalists in each category.

The Data Team Visionary Award recognizes the leaders who embody innovation and impact in data and AI — producing amazing results within their organization and inspiring the global data community.

Meet the four finalists for the Data Team Visionary Award category:

American Airlines – Poonam Mohan, Vice President – Information Technology
Poonam Mohan, Vice President – Information Technology at American Airlines, has set a charter for her team to always strive to deliver the right data at the right time to the business and customer enabling faster decision-making that helps to benefit millions of travelers. To achieve this goal, she has enabled the data team to migrate the on-prem data warehouse and BigData platform to the cloud, scale up the data science community at American, and adopt cloud technologies like the Databricks Lakehouse Platform. By unifying diverse data (flight search, booking, ticketing and check-in data), the data team has enabled ML use cases that improve daily operations. With the help of real-time booking and check-in data, team members were able to solve various business problems and also identify business opportunities. Under her leadership, the data team at American has achieved many milestones including assembling the DataOps team, leveraging the Lakehouse for data ingestion and ML, and establishing the DATA Academy for self-pace learning for their developer and user community.

Shell – Dan Jeavons, VP Computational Science & Digital Innovation & IT CTO
Dan Jeavons, VP Computational Science and Digital Innovation at Shell, is driving the firm’s digital innovation agenda. Dan has taken on Shell’s challenge to achieve net-zero by 2050 and a 50% reduction in scope 1&2 emissions by 2030 and is using digital technologies like Databricks Lakehouse to help make it happen. The Lakehouse is powering a number of use cases– from renewable asset management to predictive maintenance to providing retail customers with rewards and incentives to reduce their carbon footprint– giving Shell some early wins, with data insights derived from CO2 monitoring systems reducing emissions across a variety of use cases. The Lakehouse architecture has now brought together data from across Shell’s businesses – covering everything from LNG trains to emerging energy & chemicals parks to wind farms and solar parks. This consistent data layer now has in excess of 2.9 trillion rows of curated data. This data layer now supports the development of a variety of solutions from self-service dashboards, to self-service digital tools to advanced AI solutions. To accelerate the development of digital solutions, Dan has also brought his leadership to the industry at large, collaborating with other visionaries to create an open eco-system for AI-based decarbonization solutions that all energy providers can collectively benefit from.

WarnerBros Discovery – Duan Peng, SVP of Global Data & AI
Duan Peng, the SVP of Global Data & AI at WarnerBros. Discovery, is leading the charge in leveraging data and AI to create next-level viewing experiences for HBOMax and its global audience. Duan and her team built their direct-to-consumer streaming service from the ground up with the goal of delivering the best possible customer experience, through personalized content and recommendations. With her efforts, the use of data to continually improve the HBOMax service has seen an incredible amount of growth. Now, with Databricks Lakehouse, Duan is working on upgrading HBOMax’s data and machine learning infrastructure in order to effectively scale the platform’s capabilities from the US market to a global one — her team recently launched HBOMax in 39 countries across Latin America, and is working on rolling it out to Europe and Asia Pacific next. This is just the beginning for Duan’s vision for what her team can accomplish, as she works towards bringing HBOMax’s high-quality streaming entertainment to the rest of the world.

Walgreens Boots Alliance – Luigi Guadagno, GVP, Pharmacy Healthcare Technology Platform
Luigi Guadagno, GVP, Pharmacy Healthcare Technology Platform, at Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) is the platform leader who has championed the company’s efforts to personalize pharmacy care using data and AI. Luigi, and the Walgreens data team, have guided the company through its cloud-first, data architecture modernization, so that they can now deliver real-time healthcare insights to pharmacists on the front lines, and ensure the right medications are always on shelves when patients need them across 9,000 locations. Core to WBA and the Pharmacy Healthcare Technology Platform team’s vision is the Databricks Lakehouse Platform, which ingests around 200,000 transactions per second while enabling all its users (e.g., engineers, data scientists, power users, and more) to understand, analyze and create insights at an unparalleled scale and speed. WBA can now activate its data to better understand how best to engage and communicate with patients, from sharing vital information about medications to providing guidance on their journey towards a healthier life. Under Luigi’s leadership, the WBA data team has saved millions of dollars from more efficient infrastructure, higher productivity and value from use cases including inventory optimization and Covid vaccination reporting.

Check out the award finalists in the other five categories and come raise a glass and celebrate these amazing data teams during an award ceremony at the Data and AI Summit on June 29.

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