Bill Atkinson Interviews Tony Gruebl on this Week’s Think Systems’ Inaugural Technology Conference

After nearly a year of planning, Think Systems’ two-day technology, operations and innovation conference, called Think Innovate 2022, launches this week.

The conference, whichbrings together about 300 C-Level executives, government executives and business owners with revenue between $20 million and $200 million, runs from Oct. 19-21.It will provide a unique forum to share expert insights and provide unparallel networking opportunities.

“The point of the conference is to talk about this thing, innovation,” says Tony Gruebl, founder and CEO of Think, a privately-owned national management consulting firm that provides both private and public entities with organizational solutions and strategic hiring, says. “We really want to get to what innovation really means for companies. This region … we are prime to be a center for innovation.”

Innovate will have more than 50 speakers and panelists and some of the biggest names in the business from AWS and DocuSign to Cisco and Comcast. Many exciting local companies and organizations are participating, too, from MissionGo and Mind Over Machines to The CantonGroup and StartUp Maryland. One more fact: 45 companies stepped forward to sponsor the conference.

Speakers include renowned innovation expert Sara Frasca, Jason Feifer, Editor in Chief of Entrepreneur Magazine, and Rachel Mushahwar, Director of North America Partner and Channel Sales at AWS. Towson University’s Dr. Daraius Irani will provide an update on the state of the economy.

Gruebl also aims to make sure his guests have fun. In partnership with Hammerjacks98 Rock radio, and the Baltimore Blast, Think is throwing what it bills as the “social event of the year”

Says Gruebl, “This is not going to be some mundane cocktail party. It is a high-energy affair ….”

The conference will be kicked off with a press briefing at 8:00 a.m. on Oct. 19, 2022 at Marriott Owings Mills Metro Centre to discuss the conference, its goals, speakers and present their views on the business climate in 2023.

Connect with Tony and Bill on LinkedIn

Tony Gruebl is founder and CEO of Think Systems Inc., a Baltimore-based national management consulting firm that provides post-merger integration, operations and technology transformation, and program execution adapted to mid-market companies.

Gruebl founded Think in February 2004 and today the firm has 120 employees with offices in Baltimore and Boca Raton, Fla. In 2020, Think purchased Ventrue LLC, a Naples, Fla.-based shared services company opening new markets across the country.

Gruebl is a Six Sigma Master Black Belt, and former chief operating officer and vice president with 25 years of operationally focused experience in and around technology and business intelligence. He has built and managed scores of teams, led hundreds of technology deployments, crafted effective, outsourced PMOs for customers, and improved the business processes of dozens of companies.

Gruebl is coauthor of Bare Knuckled Project Management (BKPM): How to succeed at every project. BKPM explains Think’s new, yet classic style of unshackled project and program management. As of January 2020, BKPM, which is available free on Amazon and Smashwords, had a circulation of more than 17,000.

In 2021, Gruebl and colleagues Jeff Welch and Bryan Wolbert wrote The Red Pill Executive, which was published by Morgan James Publishing. Red Pill uses pop culture – The Matrix, Pulp Fiction, Jaws and big thinkers like Dr. Daniel Kahneman and Simon Sinek – to explore culture’s role in performance and effectiveness in business. The book guides readers how to immediately unleash operational improvement and success. Red Pill Executive is available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Indigo, and Indiebound (

Gruebl graduated with a bachelor’s degree in finance in 1990 from Towson University. He received an MBA-IME in Economics in 1991 from the Copenhagen Business School. In 1992, he earned an MBA in Economics and Technology from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Bill Atkinson launched Atkinson Strategic Communications in January 2020 after 15 years in the public relations business and 21 years as a newspaper reporter. Clients include, Coca-Cola Consolidated, the largest bottler of Coca-Cola products in the country, the American Beverage Association, Howard Bank, Ambu, a Danish medical device maker with its U.S. headquarters in Columbia, Md., and Think Systems, a Baltimore-based management consulting firm.

Prior to starting his own firm, Atkinson was a partner in 212 Communications, which he joined in June 2015, and focused on strategic and crisis communications, media relations and grassroots strategies. Before that he was a senior vice president at global public relations agency Weber Shandwick. At Weber’s Baltimore office Atkinson specialized in strategic and crisis communications as well as reputation management. Clients included Constellation Energy, Honeywell, General Motors, Bank of America, Promontory Financial Group and 1st Mariner Bank.

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