MSU UARC is shutting down effective June 30, 2021. We are no longer taking on new projects.


  • Jennifer Baird
  • President and CEO, Accuri Cytometers

Jennifer Baird is the company leader and has primary responsibility for strategic management, fund raising, and human resources; she also co-manages collaborators and manufacturing partners. She received her MBA from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management, where she shared Top-of-Class honors. Baird has led teams of technology developers, process improvement and sales/marketing groups generating significant cost savings, new products and sales for her clients and employers. As a vice president at Keane Consulting Group she helped build the company as it quintupled in size to over 150 staff and managed over $10M in projects. At ISSYS Sensing Systems, Inc (MI), Baird led fundraising, marketing/sales, business development, grant proposal writing, public relations, regulatory affairs, human resources, and product development.

  • S. Ann Becker
  • Professor, Management Information Systems and Computer Science
  • Director, National Center for Small Business Information, Florida Institute of Technology

Dr. S. Ann Becker is a professor of management information systems and computer science and the director of the National Center for Small Business Information at Florida Institute of Technology. Becker has extensive experience in teaching, research, and consulting in electronic commerce, database technologies, Web and handheld usability, and software engineering. She has a MBA, and a M.S. and Ph.D. in information systems from the University of Maryland, College Park. Becker has over 100 publications, and her research has been supported by Texas Instruments, IBM, the National Science Foundation, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the Alzheimer's Association, and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. She has been awarded over $1.5 million in research grants as principal or co-principal investigator. Becker is also an associate editor of several journals.

  • Jim Brennan
  • TestPartner Product Manager, Compuware Corporation

Jim Brennan received his bachelor's degree in history from Kalamazoo College and a master's degree in information, management, and communication from Walsh College in Troy, Michigan. Brennan has worked at Compuware in a variety of roles for the past decade, and currently serves as product manager for Compuware's TestPartner software.

  • Laurie Kantner
  • Vice President of Client Services, Tec-Ed, Inc.

As Tec-Ed's vice president of client services, Laurie Kantner is responsible for successful delivery of all user-centered research and design work commissioned by clients. Kantner manages Tec-Ed's user experience staff members across the country. She has over 30 years in the field of improving user experience with technology, 15 years as a usability specialist and 30 years in technical communication. Kantner has presented case studies at conferences of the Usability Professionals' Association and ACM SIGCHI. She is co-author of the chapter "Estimating a User-Centered Design Effort" in the recently published casebook, User-Centered Design Stories: Real-World UCD Case Studies.

  • Shane Lovellette
  • User Experience Product Manager,TechSmith Corporation

Shane Lovellette is the product manager for TechSmith's user experience products, including Morae and UserVue. He came to TechSmith with over eight years of management and production experience in video and television.

In 2004, Lovellette helped TechSmith introduce Morae, the first all-digital software solution for usability testing, followed in 2006 by the launch of UserVue, the first Web application for remote user testing.

In addition to spearheading the strategic product roadmap and promotion of Morae and UserVue, Lovellette collaborates with the development team to ensure customers' feature requests and concerns are addressed in every new release.

Lovellette holds a bachelor's degree in television, radio, and film production from Syracuse University and a MBA from Michigan State University.

  • Sumanth Muthyala
  • Usability Engineer-Technical Lead, Compuware Corporation

Sumanth Muthyala joined Compuware Corporation's Usability and Interaction Design team in February, 2001. He has been involved with design of Windows and Web based applications since the beginning of his tenure. Muthyala has extensive experience in user centered design. He has conducted field studies and usability assessments, and created prototypes, styleguides, and stylesheets. He created and documented the detailed design specification for the award winning version of TestPartner and has been working with the product group since September, 2005. Muthyala holds a master's degree in industrial engineering and a bachelor's degree in instrumentation engineering. For his master's degree, he specialized in human factors, usability testing, design of human computer systems, design and analysis of human-machine systems, and qualitative and quantitative experimental design and analysis methods. He also gained a theoretical grounding in human factors and usability testing methods. He is an active member of UPA, ACM SIG-CHI, and the Human Factors and the Ergonomics Society.

  • Janine A. Purcell
  • Cognitive Engineer, VHA Bar Code Resource Office

Janine Purcell works as the cognitive engineer for the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) Bar Code Resource Office. Her Veterans Affairs (VA) career started at the VA National Center for Patient Safety, where she contributed to usability and patient safety initiatives involving software and product design. Purcell has worked for over 20 years in commercial and research settings, principally in the field of human-computer interaction. She holds a B.A. in linguistics from the University of California at Berkeley and a M.S. in industrial engineering and operations research, with a concentration in cognitive human factors, from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

  • Ergin Salih
  • TestPartner Development Team Lead, Compuware Corporation

Ergin Salih has been working in the application automation and testing field for nearly 20 years. He has been directly involved with the development of the TestPartner product for over eight years, and he is one of the original architects for the latest version. Salih started his career as a mechanical engineer working for Babcock Power Ltd. in the United Kingdom. He earned his TEC Higher Certificate in mechanical engineering from Acton Technical College in London. After completing his apprenticeship, he joined the Engineering Project Planning department as a project planner. He had the opportunity to move to the company's IS department and eventually left to join Direct Technology Ltd. who were pioneers in application automation and testing with the products Automator Mi2 and Automator QA. He spent over eight years as a consultant and trainer, solving automation and testing problems for customers, before joining the development team as a developer and then a team leader. Originally from London, England, Salih now lives in southeast Michigan.

  • Richard Sheridan
  • President, Menlo Innovations

As President of Menlo Innovations, Rich Sheridan, along with co-founders, formed a company around the passions of building great software and great software teams. Sheridan has sponsored dramatic changes to existing teams using techniques from many sources, including Extreme Programming and The 5th Discipline. He has focused on improving the culture, productivity and results of teams with which he works. His experiences as the vice president of R&D at Interface Systems were captured in the book Creativity at Work by Jeff DeGraff and Katherine Lawrence of the University of Michigan Business School. The book came at a time when Interface Systems was named the #1 public company in Michigan. Sheridan is a graduate of the University of Michigan where he received a B.S. in computer science and a master's degree in computer engineering.

Sheridan has focused his attention and energy on the power of open and collaborative work spaces as originally practiced by Thomas Edison. Edison's lab in Menlo Park, New Jersey was the inspiration for the company name. The dramatic success of Menlo, during one of the hardest times for the information technology industry, captured the attention of Forbes magazine, where Sheridan appeared on the cover in May, 2003. Menlo Innovations was named to the Inc 500 list of fastest growing private firms in 2007.

An excellent speaker and presenter, Sheridan readily shares his knowledge and successes from real-world experience. He is now scheduled to be a guest lecturer at the University of Michigan Business School.

  • Jason Withrow
  • Business Analyst, University of Michigan Health System Faculty
  • Washtenaw Community College

Jason Withrow is currently a business analyst for the University of Michigan Health System and teaches user experience and Web development courses in the Internet Professional program at Washtenaw Community College. He holds master's degrees in psychology and information, and has eight years of experience in the Web development industry.