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TECH 21 — Mississippi’s most wanted in technology for 2015

When examining Mississippi’s contributions to the technology world, there are tech veterans whose works are still being felt, and there are young minds who are bringing new ideas. The Tech 21 is the Mississippi Business Journal’s take on some of the top contributors to technology in Mississippi and the world.

Cameron Arcemont

Cameron Arcemont, Owner Arc Technologies

Arc Technologies was formed in 2004 in Ridgeland, and Cameron Arcemont is the programming brain behind its signature product “Eight,” a paperless system that incorporates federal requirements in a new-hire software. Forms are submitted electronically, and supervisors and employees can follow their forms throughout the system.

» READ MORE: ‘Eight’ more than enough: Arc Technologies software a paperless solution to human resources nightmares


Jim Barksdale, Chairman & president Barksdale Management

Jim Barksdale’s IBM sales job after college at Ole Miss turned into decades of managing corporations, including being the CEO of Netscape from 1995-1999, when it was acquired by AOL. After Netscape, he founded The Barksdale Group, an investment and advisory group created for the purpose of helping Internet service companies.

beneke, jill RGB

Jill Beneke, President & CEO Pileum Corp.

After working in the financial services industry for more than 20 years — where, among other responsibilities, she was in charge of strategic planning of technology deployments at Deposit Guaranty Bank — Jill Beneke formed Pileum Corp. in 2001. Pileum designs technology solutions to help clients achieve their business objectives.

» READ MORE: Pileum Corporation provides clients wide range of services


Gary Butler, Chairman and CEO, Camgian Microsystems

Since its founding by Butler in 2006, Camgian has achieved multi-million dollar annual revenues and has been recognized for its products in the machine-to-machine networking market. Previously, Butler was at BBN Technologies where he led development programs for low-power sensor networks and advanced signal processing.

» READ MORE: The ‘Internet of things’ is focus of Camgian’s Gary Butler


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAGeoffrey Carter, Founder / CEO Hyperion Technology Group

Carter founded Hyperion Technology Group, which provides innovative engineering solutions, including including electronic design, RF and microwave engineering, industrial automation systems, software developme nt, embedded control, acoustics, signal processing, simulation, mechanical modeling and product design.

» READ MORE: SENSING GROWTH — Tupelo technolgy firm expanding in military, weather, industry fields

Toni D Cooley_rgbToni D. Cooley, Founder/co-owner Systems Electro Coating, LLC

Cooley is the founder and president of Systems Electro Coating, a tier-one supplier to Nissan of electrocoated frames and vehicle components. She is also co-owner of Systems IT, a new horizon computer learning center in Jackson. She holds a law degree and is a director for Trustmark and Sanderson Farms.

gibert, Gerard 4cGerard Gibert Founder & CEO Venture Technologies

Gerard Gibert is an entrepreneur and technologist who specializes in the business application of cloud computing. Venture, which was founded in 1986 and has locations throughout the South, owns and operates a Tier 3 data center in Jackson that provides a comprehensive suite of cloud services for thousands of customers.

» SEE MORE: Gerard Gibert talks with MBJ-TV

Goldman, David RGBDavid Goldman, Founder & president Ideal Software Systems

David Goldman grew up in the family entertainment center industry in Meridian, then founded Ideal Software Systems in 1984 as part of the family business. Ideal Software is used in entertainment centers, water parks, zoos, retail stores, museums, laser tag facilities and theme parks. Ideal Financial Software also serves financial markets, most notably rent-to-own.

» READ MORE: Experience in family business leads Meridian’s Goldman to ideal situation

Green, Travis_rgbTravis Green, President PFG Precision Optics

Green is president of PFG Precision Optics in Ocean Springs, a manufacturer of high-end optical components, assemblies and thin-film coatings. The firm’s strength has been visible and shortwave infra-red optics for the defense, semiconductor, medical and scientific industries. More recently it has moved into the deep UV and mid-wave IR wavelengths.

» READ MORE: Precision is hallmark of Ocean Springs optics maker

Craig Harvey_rgbCraig Harvey, COO/ Executive VP NVision Solutions

Harvey has worked in the field of geospatial science for 20 years. At Nvision Solutions he has been named 2005 Louisiana Technology Innovator of the Year, 2006 Mississippi Innovator of the Year, and a Tibbett’s award winner in 2006 for excellence in federal research for NASA related projects. Nvision finds geospatial solutions for small and large organizations


Jeff, Tony RGBTony Jeff, President & CEO, Innovate Mississippi

Innovate Mississippi is a nonprofit that drives innovation and technology-based economic development for the state. Before becoming president, Tony Jeff was vice president  and helped companies that raised more than $130 million in private equity financing. He speaks regularly on emerging trends and strategies in technology and innovation commercialization.

» READ MORE: Q&A: Tony Jeff, president and CEO of Mississippi Technology Alliance

henry jones_rgbHenry Jones, Founder Kopis Mobile

Jones previously was director of the Center for Battlefield Innovation at Mississippi State University before founding Kopis Mobile, which designs and manufactures apps and app-enabled equipment for the Department of Defense, law enforcementr and private security. Jones’ product developments include telecommunications, electric utilities, and remote sensing.

lichtenhan, joeJoe Lichtenhan, President & CEO, Hybrid Plastics

Hybrid Plastics operates a chemistry and sales support facility in California, while polymer support and development, bulk production and corporate headquarters are in Hattiesburg. Joe Lichtenhan’s firm has also developed an association with one of the top polymers schools in the nation — the University of Southern Mississippi.

» READ MORE: LIQUIDITY — Hybrid Plastics expanding after developing new product line

Meena, Hu RGBHu Meena, President & CEO, C Spire

Meena has served to notice to the telecom sector that Ridgeland-based C Spire intends to be aggressive and innovative in the digital market. He is guiding an effort to build a fiber optic network to deliver ultra high-speed Internet to the home. Last year, the trade publication Fierce Wireless listed him the 20th most powerful person in the U.S. wireless and wireline.

» READ MORE: MBJ BUSINESS PERSON OF THE YEAR — Forward thinking: C Spire’s Hu Meena has made the most of 2013

Moore, David RGBDavid Moore, Founder, president & CEO Navagis

David Moore knows maps. While at the Army Corps of Engineers where he created Corpsglobe, one of the largest Google Earth Enterprise installations outside of Google. In 2008 he founded Navagis, which helps create operating maps to visualize critical information. He’s also spent time working with Google.

Palmer, David RGBDavid Palmer, Owner, Synergetics

In addition to operating Synergetics, a nationwide information technology services consulting  firm, for the last 22 years, David Palmer also has the largest solar array in the TVA area on the roof of his Starkville headquarters. Synergetics provides a full-range of network support and works with K-12 schools in Mississippi and Alabama.

john palmer_rgbJohn Palmer, Chairman GulfSouth Capital

A pioneer in the wireless indusstry, Palmer founded MCCA and Skytel. He has served as president of two of the wireless telecommunications industry’s leading national trade associations, received two presidential appointments for his expertise in international trade and sits on the boards of two New York Stock Exchange companies.

» READ MORE: Palmer donates $1M to UMMC’s MIND Center for Alzheimer’s research

bill Rayburn_rgbBill Rayburn, Chairman / CEO FNC

Rayburn co-founded the software technology company FNC Inc., which builds systems that give mortgage lenders and servicers access to the most current residential real estate information throught data workflow and analytic tools. It was the first company to create real estate collateral information technology.

» READ MORE: Oxford’s FNC getting new headquarters

stradinger, joe2 RGBJoe Stradinger, Founder & CEO, Edge Theory

Internet browsers provide a search engine, but at Ridgeland’s Edge Theory, formerly Leadify, Mississippi native Joe Stradinger has introduced social media to the “find engine.” His platform creates conversation for business and deploys messages on social networks, then provides intelligence back to businesses.

» READ MORE: State roots key to Edge Theory’s Joe Stradinger

watts, Gary RGBGary Watts ,Founder & CEO, Broadband Voice

When Gary Watts realized the future importance of telephony rooted in hosted VoIP solutions, it led him to start Broadband Voice to provide Voice over IP products and services for small to medium-sized businesses. His company has become one of the fastest-growing VoIP technology companies in the Southeast.

» READ MORE: Broadband Voice founder Gary Watts isn’t afraid to take chances

Williams, Lakeisha RGBLakeisha Williams, Assistant professor, Bagley School of Engineering

A biomedical engineer at Mississippi State University’s Bagley School of Engineering, Williams researches ways to protect people from serious injuries and death — such as what happens to soldiers’ legs when their vehicles run over explosives, and how to improve football helmets to better prevent concussions and other injuries.


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