SoTeC Conference History

In the late 1980s, the Quality Assurance Institute’s first affiliated chapter, the Southern California Quality Assurance Association—Orange County (SCQAA-OC), decided to start holding an Annual Vendor Showcase to bring software vendors together with the Southern California Quality Assurance community. The idea of the event was to give SCQAA-OC members an opportunity to explore products and services that could be useful to them and their companies.

At the same time, Jim Stoumpos—a very active member of SCQAA-OC—along with others, decided there was a need for more SCQAA Chapters around the greater LA area. Over several years he found more volunteers and expanded SCQAA to LA, the Inland Empire, and San Fernando Valley; all four of these Chapters continue in operation today. In 2000, Jim and others decided to expand the Vendor Showcase to become a full-fledged, one-day annual conference for Software Quality, Project Management and IT practitioners. This was the beginning of the Southern California Coalition Technology Conference (SCCTC).

Each year a volunteer Board was setup with representatives from each of the Sponsoring Associations with the charter of developing a low-cost conference primarily for the benefit of the membership of the Sponsors, though anyone was welcome to attend. As the SCCTC grew in popularity, so did the list of Sponsors. At different times, the conference has been sponsored by the four Southern California Quality Assurance Association chapters and by the Association of Information Technology Professionals—Los Angeles, the Project Management Institute chapters in Orange County, Los Angeles, Los Padres, and the Inland Empire, and the Quality Assurance Institute Worldwide. In 2016, the Conference is being sponsored by the Orange County and San Fernando chapters of SCQAA, PMI Orange County and Los Angeles, the International Institute of Business Analysts Los Angeles and Orange County chapters, ITSMF-USA, AITP Los Angeles, and the QAI Global Institute.

In 2006 the Conference was expanded from Saturday only to both Friday and Saturday, and has been held over two days ever since. The Conference has become known for excellent speakers, relevant topics, dynamic keynotes, and highly interactive panel discussions, as well as providing an excellent opportunity for networking. The Conference is also known for its value—providing two days of top notch learning and networking opportunities for a fraction of the cost of similar conferences.

In 2008, the name of the Conference was changed to the Southland Technology Conference, or SoTeC, in order to simplify it and make the acronym easier to say. But the purpose and planning remain the same. This has always been a local conference for the benefit of the local Sponsors and their members.