Tech Moves: Axon joins SpaceX as a top Blue Origin engineer; HTC Vive executive hired; Porch joins the board

Chris Chin. (Axon Photo)

— Law enforcement technology company Axon added former HTC Vive exec Chris Chin as vice president of immersive tech.Chin’s new position will see him responsible for Axon’s virtual reality, augmented reality and training platforms.

Chin, who was Vice President and General Manager of Vive Studios (which published VR content), worked at HTC Vive. Chin is located in San Francisco Bay Area.

Axon is headquartered in Scottsdale, Ariz. and has a substantial engineering presence in Seattle. According to the company, its goal is to deescalate police force use by offering transparency and technologies that could replace deadly weapons.

According to LinkedIn, Nitin Arora (former NASA Systems Engineer) is joining SpaceX.

Arora worked for Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin for more than 2 years, including as part of the development team that built the human landing system.

This is after Blue Origin lost an appeal against NASA’s decision not to give SpaceX $2.9 billion to send astronauts back to the moon.

Two new members have been added to the board of Porch Group, a Seattle-based company that provides home service technology.Imagination Capital founder and Managing PartnerRachel LamFormer CEO of Aviva plc GroupMaurice Tulloch.Read the story.

Lisa Nelson. (Microsoft Photo)

— Former M12 Managing Director Lisa Nelson was appointed to the board of Astra Space.Astra Space, a California-based space venture founded in 2005, is located in California.Publication last monthThrough a merger of the SPAC led by Craig McCaw, a telecom pioneer.

Nelson stated that “Spacetech” will allow the creation of the next trillion-dollar economic system. I’m delighted to work with Astra’s top-notch board and management team in order to forge the next frontier in innovation and economic growth.

Nelson is also currently a member of the Kuelap board and DNA Seattle. Brooks, Movac, Flying Fish Partners, and early-stage startups are among her advisors.

— Former Convoy CFO Brian Kreiner recently joined college recruiting platform Handshake as CFO.

Convoy President and COO Mark Okerstrom is now acting CFO. The former Expedia CEO, who joined trucking startup Convoy a year ago, previously served as CFO at the Seattle travel giant.

Kreiner, prior to his 2018 joining Convoy, was the CEO of Cal Net Technology Group as well as a managing partner at Olympic Valley Capital.

New Athira execs Mark Worthington, general counsel, and Rachel Lenington, chief technology officer and head of product development strategy. (Athira Photos)

Athira Pharma has recently named Rachel Lenington, head of product strategy, and Mark Worthington general counsel.A biotech company based in Bothell, Wash. reported it was advancing clinical trials following allegations that its CEO had manipulated images in documents.Read the story.

Chris Bee. (Lessen Photo)

— Scottsdale, Ariz.-based startup Lessen named Chris Bee, a former senior director of product development at Zillow, as CTO.Bee worked previously as an engineer and product manager for Uber, Amazon, and Microsoft.

Lessen was founded in 2020 and currently employs 20 people in Seattle. The company plans to increase its workforce by 20 percent in 2021. It connects property owners and maintenance, cleaning and renovation professionals through its platform.

— Longtime Washington Research Foundation CFO Jeff Eby has retired after 19 years at the private foundation.Ron Howell, former CEO of the WRFRetiredAfter 29 years, April.

Eby has been succeeded by Morgan Hellar who originally joined WRF in 2004 as a license administrator for the organization’s patent portfolio. Before her promotion she served as WRF’s controller.

Saty Bahadur. (Upwork Photo)

— Freelancing platform Upwork hired former Amazon General Manager Saty Bahadur as CTO.Bahadur was previously employed by Microsoft for ten years, including as an engineer director.

Bahadur, who was previously the leader of Alexa’s artificial intelligence team, managed fraud worldwide and abusive at Amazon.

Santa Clara is the headquarters of Upwork, which was created from Elance’s merger with oDesk.

Shalabh Chaudhri. (Panda Photo)

Shalabh Chaudhri was appointed head of customer at AI startup Panda.Most recently, he was the director of customer service, support, and customer success at Algorithmia.DataRobot acquired this information last month.

Panda, a Seattle-based startup that uses natural language processing to manage its accounts software.

Panda was born from the Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence, (AI2) and co-founded last year by Yue Ning and Aaron Goldfeder. Panda previously raised a $3.3 million round led by PSL Ventures.

— San Francisco life insurance startup Ethos hired three Zillow Group veterans, two of which are based in Seattle:

  • Nick FitzerAs vice president of sales. Fitzer was with Zillow for more than 10 years, and most recently managed mortgage strategy and sales.
  • Keri McGheeAs head of partner marketing. McGhee is the former VP Marketing at Tom Ferry’s real estate coaching firm. He was also previously senior director for supplier marketing and events at Zillow.
  • Rob Broesler Jr.As vice president and general manager for partnerships. Broesler Jr. is based in San Francisco and has been with Zillow for eight years, including as the senior director of mortgage analysis and business operations.

Last month, Ethos raised $100 million from SoftBank’s Vision Fund 2.

Puvin Pichai. (Rebellyous Foods Photo)

— Seattle-based Rebellyous Foods announced Beyond Meat veteran Puvin Pichai will join the startup as director of equipment research and development.

Pichair holds a PhD in chemical engineering. He previously headed R&D at Novus International and Beyond Meat. Founded in 2017, Rebellyous Foods rolled out three new plant-based products earlier this year.

Sparrow Pharmaceuticals, based in Portland, has appointed Frank Czerwiec chief medical officer and Jamie MacPherson VP of regulatory affairs & quality.

Czerwiec spent over two decades with Otsuka Pharmaceutical and was the most recent chief medical officer of Goldfinch Bio. Sparrow is joining Sparrow’s team from Akcea Therapeutics. MacPherson was previously the director of global regulatory affairs for Alexion Pharmaceuticals.

— Seattle-based Marchex appointed Ryan Polley as COO. Polley served as the previously chief product officer and strategy for Marchex, a publicly traded company selling “conversational Intelligence” software. Before joining Marchex, Polley worked at Kargo Global as well as Rubicon Project.

Publiated at Tue 17 August 2021 20.53:04 +0000

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.