Slalom and WTIA add diversity leaders; Seattle mayor won't seek re-election – GeekWire

Slalom and WTIA add diversity leaders; Seattle mayor won’t seek re-election – GeekWire

Slalom and WTIA add diversity leaders; Seattle mayor won’t seek re-election – GeekWire

Iesha Berry. (Slalom Photo)

— Seattle-based consulting firm Slalom announced Iesha Berry as its first chief inclusion and diversity officer. Based in the Dallas area, Berry was most recently SVP of human resources and diversity and inclusion at Bank of America. She was previously a senior director of Microsoft’s global diversity and inclusion team.

“I’m joining Slalom in the midst of three global pandemics — health, economic, and racial injustice — and it is critical that I use my voice, talent, and hands to enable action,” said Berry.

Yolanda Chase. (WTIA Photo)

— The Washington Technology Industry Association (WTIA) named Yolanda Chase as chief diversity officer and the newest member of the trade group’s senior leadership team. 

Chase will launch a new diversity, equity and inclusion office within the WTIA and lead the recently announced “Anti-racism in Tech Pact.” She is founder and principal of Diversity Way-Maker Consulting and previously led global inclusion and diversity for Arrow Electronics.

“We have a lot of work to do, and I’m confident that my experience in driving DEI efforts forward with complete alignment will allow me to hit the ground running and deliver measurable success for the Pact, its members and our communities,” said Chase.

— Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan will not seek re-election for a second term. She announced her decision in a video statement and plans to spend the remainder of her time in office focusing on the city’s COVID-19 pandemic response and economic recovery instead of campaigning.

Per Reinhall. (UW Photo)

— Vicis co-founder and University of Washington Professor Per Reinhall will step down as the chair of the UW Mechanical Engineering department at the end of the year. He has served as chair since 2010.

Reinhall co-founded high-tech helmet maker Vicis in 2014. The Seattle startup shut down last year and its assets were purchased by an investment firm in April.

In addition to returning to research and teaching, Reinhall said in a UW news interview that “I have a few startups that I want to spend more time nurturing and spend more time with my family.”

— San Francisco, Calif.-based Opendoor appointed Kushal Chakrabarti as its VP of research and data science. He previously served as a strategic advisor for the real estate startup, which competes with Seattle-based companies Zillow Group and Redfin.

Chakrabarti was previously a data scientist and engineering lead at Amazon. He also led Seattle-based microfinance nonprofit Vittana.

— Collaboration work management software company Smartsheet announced Pete Godbole as CFO. 

Godbole was most recently CFO at financial services solutions provider Hearsay Systems and analytics startup GoodData. He also previously served as CFO for VMware’s End User Computing business.

Bellevue, Wash.-based Smartsheet reported Q3 revenue up 38% year-over-year, sending its shares soaring this week.

Susie Kroll. (DigniFi Photo)

— Former Amazon and Starbucks product leader Susie Kroll joined DigniFi, a tech platform for financing auto repairs, as chief product officer.

Kroll most recently worked as director of product for Indian hotel chain Oyo. At Amazon, she was a manager on the Amazon Payment and Kindle teams. Kroll also led Starbucks’ digital card and mobile payments experiences.

Founded in 2013, Kirkland, Wash.-based DigniFi closed a $14 million Series A round earlier this year.

— Seattle-based Sports Illustrated publisher Maven appointed Andrew Kraft as chief operating officer and Jill Marchisotto as chief marketing officer. Both are based in New York.

The new appointments come after Sports Illustrated executive Ross Levinsohn stepped in as CEO. Maven co-founders James Heckman and Bill Sornsin stepped down earlier this year as CEO and COO, respectively.

— Bellevue, Wash.-based Cirkled In added former Starbucks President Howard Behar as an advisor. The five-year old startup is a platform for students to build out their portfolios for college admission and offers discovery tools for universities.

Behar joined Starbucks in 1989 when it began expanding internationally and grew from 28 stores to 15,000 stores. He remained on the Starbucks board of directors after his retirement until he stepped down in 2009. He is also an advisor for nonprofits and educational organizations.

— Vancouver, B.C.-based custom footwear startup FitMyFoot, formerly known as Wiivv Wearables, formed an advisory board. Its members include:

• AnnMarie Coe Thomas, a Microsoft vet and former VP of product marketing at ADP.

• Bill Snowden, co-founder of boutique footwear design firm Snowden Brothers and former EVP at Steve Madden

• Brian Riseland, founder of Laundry Genius and a former strategy director at Microsoft.

• Chris Carle, longtime Nike director and category footwear leader.

• Dan Madsen, a senior living hospitality executive and currently chairman and CEO of One Eighty.

• Drew Nordstrom, client advisor at The Caprock Group and co-founder of tax-software

Other recent Tech Moves from across the Pacific Northwest tech industry: 

  • RFID tech company Impinj appointed Thomvest Ventures Partner Umesh Padval to its board of directors.
  • Satellite venture BlackSky, which has offices in Seattle, Wash. and Herndon, Va., announced Uyen Dinh as its VP for government relations and strategy.
  • Vancouver, Wash.-based event management software startup Hubb hired Trey Vincent as VP of finance.
  • Candice Decaire joined Seattle’s Infectious Disease Research Institute as general counsel.
  • Seattle surgical technology startup Proprio announced independent medical device industry consultant Tommy Carls as a new advisor.
  • Canadian social media management startup Hootsuite promoted Tara Ataya, former VP of people, to chief people and diversity officer.
  • Health insurance provider Regence BlueShield named Melissa Powell as VP of network management, responsible for partnerships with Washington state providers.

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