I am an obsessively curious, hands-on entrepreneur, and product management executive who has founded multiple venture-backed startups. I lead development and product teams that create various interactive digital media products, SaaS platforms, and web communities. Currently, I am working with new ML/AI pipelines such as LangChain and using models from Hugging Face to fine tune private data and automate business workflows. In my free time, I enjoy reading books, studying digital subcultures, and participating in public speaking events. I work hard to see the best in people and I am excited to be creating great products that enhance people's lives.
I am currently a member of the executive management team at Wevr, where we are building WVS, a SaaS product that provides a cloud platform for game engine-based development using Git. We are committed to enhancing team outcomes by developing a NoOps platform to accelerate game engine development team productivity.
In 2021, I served as interim Chief Product Officer for Tempo, a SaaS company with the largest install base inside the Atlassian ecosystem, generating $45 million in annual recurring revenue. During my tenure at Tempo, I made significant strides in several key areas, including implementing AI/ML optimized features, embedding plugins universally, internationalization, and reframing time tracking to enterprise capacity planning. One of the most important focuses was adjusting large product and development teams spanning several time zones during a COVID work-from-home policy.
Prior to joining Wevr and Tempo, I worked as the Head of Digital for Ashton Kutcher at Katalyst. In this position, I oversaw digital product development, social media, partnership engagements, and early-stage investments for Ashton. Collaborating with Ashton on his vision for his products, companies and investments was a unique and unforgettable experience. For more than two years, every moment was filled with excitement and the visionary perspective that Ashton brought to the world. It was an amazing time.
I founded and served as CEO/CPO of Buzzmedia, a web publisher of social media communities. We were pioneers in influencer-created content and were backed by Redpoint Ventures, NEA, and SutterHill. We launched Internet top-100 music and celebrity web communities, helping to launch pop culture influencers such as the Kardashians, and musicians from Fallout Boy, Paramore, and Adele.
Over the course of nearly a decade, we acquired and built more than 30 web communities and maintained a ComScore reach of 110 million monthly active users, resulting in millions in revenue. Some of our digital media brands included Stereogum, Pure Volume, JustJared, Absolute Punk, and Celebuzz. During this time, we established modern models of social media, growth hacking and creator-driven communities, as well as web 2.0 practices and advertising strategies that are now commonplace.
Before starting Buzzmedia (SpinMedia), I co-founded Metapa (Greenplum) with my long-time friend and co-founder, Scott Yara. We were backed by early VC, Ed Sim, who now runs BoldStart Ventures and has become a dear friend. During the dot-com failures, Yara and I pivoted Metapa from a content distribution platform to a big data company and managed to survive. Our story is all about determination and focus on pivoting to a product-market fit and never giving up. Yara is also an investor and board member at Wevr where we will still work together on a weekly basis.
Furthermore, I have held product and engineering positions at Ironport Systems, a Silicon Valley enterprise tech startup, where I had the opportunity to help build Ironport's C series product line and take it to markets worldwide. Living through Ironport’s go-to-market strategy in the enterprise was an opportunity of a lifetime. The Ironport team provided the closest feeling I have ever had to being on a championship sports team. My experiences at Metapa and Ironport were pivotal in my learning journey, and I enjoyed both the teams I built and was a part of.
I would like to acknowledge one of my earliest partners, Craig Newmark, with whom I had a great experience working with. We co-founded a small tech consultancy (DigitalThreads) in San Francisco, where we developed some of the earliest websites on the Web. One of our projects was Craigslist, which Craig credits me with naming and helping to set up. These early days of the Web in San Francisco were the birthplace of my Web tech career. What is truly amazing to me is the homepage markup on the Craigslist that we hacked in the 90s is still there. Long live Craigslist!!!
Throughout my career, I have designed, developed, and implemented product strategies for brands such as Microsoft, Paul Allen, GE, Virgin, Absolut Vodka, Samsung, Universal, Warner Bros., Tempo, and other enterprise SaaS companies. I have had the privilege of working with talented people, including Reggie Watts, Kevin Kelly, Zoe Saldaña, David Choe, and Ashton Kutcher.
My work has been featured in The New Yorker, Wall Street Journal, Fast Company, The Verge, Bloomberg, and The New York Times. I won a Communication Arts award for interface design and have been recognized as one of Fast Company's Most Innovative Companies in AR/VR. I have spoken at conferences around the world and have taken the time to mentor and support young teams.
Additionally, I invest in and advise interesting founders and early-stage SaaS startups that have a positive creator economy focus. 😀