Featured Speakers

Featured Speakers and Sessions offer some of the most forward-thinking, inspiring, and exciting presentations at SXSW Gaming. Reintroduced for the 2018 SXSW Gaming Festival, who all will we see at next year’s event?


Featured Speakers

An Interview with Phil Spencer, SXSW 2014 - Photo by Rich Denis

About Featured Speakers

 

SXSW Gaming speakers come from all over the globe. When you attend the dozens of panels, meet ups, and talks throughout next year’s event, expect to hear from the top industry experts, personalities, esports players, developers, authors, legends, and much, much more.

2018 marks the return of the Featured Speakers format to the programming lineup. Former featured speakers have included world-renowned individuals such as Phil Spencer (Head of Xbox, Microsoft Studios), Jade Raymond (Former Managing Director, Ubisoft and Founder, Motive Studios), and Andrew Wilson (CEO, EA).

With the SXSW PanelPicker concluding later this summer, we can’t wait to share the first sessions you’ll see at SXSW Gaming 2018 along with some major featured speakers.


SXSW Gaming 2018 takes place in the Austin Convention Center in Austin, Texas from Thursday, March 15 – Saturday, March 17.

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Attend SXSW Gaming 2018

Be a part of a whole new kind of gaming festival experience that can only be found in the heart of the legendary SXSW. Get exclusive access to star-studded showcases, competitions for both fans and pros, in-depth conversations on the latest gaming trends, and all of your favorite games with an official SXSW Gaming wristband! Gaming wristbands on sale now in limited supplies.

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There are a variety of ways to get involved in the 2018 SXSW Gaming Festival, including the Gaming Awards and Pitch Competition. Learn more about all of our upcoming and current application periods today!

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SXSW Gaming 2018 Featured Speakers

 

Nate Nanzer (Commissioner, Overwatch League)

Serving as the Commissioner of the Overwatch League, Nate Nanzer leads the cross-discipline esports effort for the team-based shooter. Nate began developing plans for an Overwatch esports program in his spare time while working in Blizzard’s marketing department, and has now turned that passion into a full-time role. He oversees the strategy, development, and execution of Overwatch esports for all levels of play, and is responsible for everything from partnerships to competition rules.

Christina Alejandre (GM of ELEAGUE & VP of Esports, Turner Sports)

Christina Alejandre joined Turner Sports in March 2016 as General Manager of ELEAGUE and Vice President of Esports. In this role, she leads the development and strategy for ELEAGUE, a transformative esports tournament brand created in partnership with IMG. She is responsible for business operations, content and program strategy for ELEAGUE, as well as the pursuit of new esports opportunities.

Brendan Donohue (Managing Director, NBA 2K League) with Manny Anekal

As Managing Director of the NBA 2K League, Brendan Donohue is responsible for overseeing the newly formed esports league set to launch in 2018. Donohue, a sports industry veteran with more than two decades of experience in team and league operations, manages a league that will feature 17 NBA teams in its inaugural season. Prior to assuming his current role in April 2017, Donohue served as SVP of the NBA’s industry-renowned Team Marketing & Business Operations (TMBO) department. Donohue will be interviewed by Manny Anekal, founder and CEO of The Next Level.

Pete Vlastelica (President and CEO, MLG)

Pete Vlastelica is President and CEO of Major League Gaming (MLG), a division of Activision Blizzard devoted to creating the best esports experiences for fans across games, platforms and geographies. Prior to MLG, Vlastelica was the Executive Vice President of Digital at FOX Sports, where he focused on content and product development, social media, technology, and creation of multi-platform content properties, including the Emmy-award winning “Garbage Time with Katie Nolan.” He directed the growth of FOXSports.com and the mobile app FOX Sports Go, where he oversaw the streaming of thousands of live sporting events, including Super Bowl XLVIII, which set a new internet record for streaming viewers for a sporting event.

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