Voci's leadership team is made up of experts in speech science and business management with a rich history of experience in the technology arena. Get to know the men and women driving Voci towards a successful future of B2B language technology services and solutions.
ANTHONY GADIENT — President and CEO
Anthony is a founder and CEO of Voci Technologies. Voci enables enterprises to extract actionable intelligence from their voice communications. He and the Voci team are passionate about human to human communication, and focused on building the world's best platform for voice analytics. Prior to Voci, Anthony co-founded Neolinear, a successful semiconductor design automation company which was acquired by Cadence Design Systems (NASDAQ:CDNS). He sits on the Board of Renovis a next generation orthopedic device company, has served in numerous executive management roles, and as an officer in the US Air Force. Anthony received his BS in Electrical Engineering from the University of Virginia, his PhD in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University, and his MBA from Wright State University.
MICHAEL SMOCER — Chief Revenue Officer
Mike Smocer joined Voci with over 25 years experience in customer facing leadership roles. In the 20 years prior to joining Voci, he served in progressive levels of company leadership with Pittsburgh technology companies Ansoft and ANSYS. With particular strength in creating and building winning teams centered around a strong culture, Mike played several key roles in growing reported revenue that ranged from $14 million in 1997 to nearly $1 billion in 2016. He has extensive global experience that includes standing up ANSYS's first global account team focused the company's top bellwether accounts. Mike is a Pittsburgh native and holds a BSME and MBA from the University of Pittsburgh.
WAYNE RAMPRASHAD — Chief Operating Officer
Wayne joined Voci with 30 years of experience in the architecture, development, and operations of large-scale speech-driven data systems, having held senior positions at several Fortune 500 companies including NYSE Euronext, Comcast Cable, IBM, Lucent, and AOL Time Warner. As Executive Director of Call Management Technology and Architecture at Comcast, Wayne was responsible for helping formulate and execute on an enterprise-wide strategic vision for self-service solutions in support of Customer Service Operations, saving the company in excess of $1.2B in operational expenses. Earlier in his career Wayne was Computer Telephony Architect for the successful startup Quack.com, acquired by AOL in 2000, where he became Chief Architect of Platform Services and Architecture. Wayne has cultivated high-performing growth-oriented teams in businesses of all sizes, from small startups to large multinationals, using proven team-based management methodologies such as Agile, Kaizen, and Services-Oriented Architecture to deliver highly reliable services. Wayne earned his Honours BS degree in Joint Applied Mathematics and Computer Science at the University of Waterloo, Canada.
JOHN KOMINEK — Chief Technology Officer
John Kominek is a Voci co-founder and brings the company successful start-up experience along with extensive expertise in speech technologies. In his first start-up, Kominkek was co-founder of the highly successful Quack.com, the first company to enter the voice portal business (and later acquired by AOL). At Quack, he led the engineering teams responsible for the fusion and structuring of voice-searchable data, and for the development of the text-to-speech architecture. Prior to Voci, John worked for Automated Speech Technologies, where he developed extremely low bitrate speech codecs based on vocabulary independent speech recognition. He has over 40 research publications and is the holder of seven U.S. patents. John earned his BS in Honours Physics and his MS in Mathematics and Computer Science at the University of Waterloo, and his PhD from the Language Technologies Institute at Carnegie Mellon.
JOHN KUHNS — Vice President of Engineering
John Kuhns is a full-stack expert in software engineering and the architecting/building of top-performing, highly reliable systems. John has been with Voci from the beginning and has written and overseen the development of the highly-efficient speech recognition server and its concise, easy-to-use APIs. John got his start at Neolinear where he impressed and rose, taking over router development, working closely with Dr. Rutenbar, and leading a team to innovate and build a ground-breaking, high-performing, versatile analog router. After that, John moved on to DesignAdvance Systems where he streamlined the development process and led the team's design and production of a compelling suite of tools to accelerate PCB design. John received his BS and MS in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University.
MIKE KULMOSKI — Chief Financial Officer
Michael Kulmoski has over 30 years of financial and operational expertise in leadership roles. He began his professional career with KPMG where he served as a Senior Manager in the audit department of the Pittsburgh office. Subsequently, he served as CFO in several entrepreneurial ventures, including Stargate.net and Moai, both of which were in the technology space. Through venture investment and M&A, he took Stargate from infancy to over 400 employees. Most recently, he served as CFO at LewisGoetz for nearly 10 years, growing the company fourfold. During his tenure, he took LewisGoetz from local ownership and investment through the Private Equity process and ultimately made a successful strategic sale. He is a graduate of Washington and Jefferson College and holds an active CPA license.
JENNIFER PLOSKINA — Vice President of Business Development
Jennifer Ploskina joined Voci with over 20 years of experience in sales, marketing and operations at leading manufacturing and technology companies. Her first fifteen years were spent at Eaton Corporation in progressive levels of leadership, driving sales growth, operational excellence and channel marketing advancements within various product lines and functional teams. For the last five years, Jennifer worked as Business Development Director at BI WORLDWIDE, focused on the Behavioral Economics concepts and technology that drive increased motivation of sales teams, consumers and employees. Her work has taken her around the world and has primarily focused on Fortune 500 clients and partners. Jennifer resides in the Pittsburgh area and holds a BSEE and MBA from the University of Pittsburgh.
DAVID GARROD — General Counsel
David Garrod enjoys a long history with Voci's founders. He earned his PhD at Carnegie Mellon University where he was also a classmate of Dr. Gadient. Along with his fellow graduate student John Cohn, he originated the analog layout automation project that ultimately led to the creation of Neolinear, a startup that Dr. Gadient ran as CEO until its successful sale to Cadence. After receiving his PhD from CMU, Dave pursued a career in patent law, initially working full-time as a patent agent for the NYC law of Pennie & Edmonds, while attending Fordham Law School at night. After graduating law school, he actively practiced patent law in the NYC area. In 2008, he left the New York office of Goodwin Procter to found Bedrock Computer Technologies, an IP development company that he ran as President until its successful conclusion. He returned to Pittsburgh in 2010 to join the Voci team.
MARK ROSSI — Chairman
Mark Rossi has served as a member of the Board since 2013, and as Chairman since 2016. Mark is also a member of the Board of Directors of two public companies: Maxwell Technologies, an alternative energy company, and Cardtronics, an electronic payments company; and several private companies including Intelomed, a medical device company, and Geotrace Technologies, a seismic software company. Mark has previously served on the Boards of more than 20 other companies both public and private. Mark is a founding partner of Cornerstone Equity Investors which has funded over 100 companies in a variety of industries with particular emphasis on technology, healthcare services and products, and business services. Prior to the formation of Cornerstone Equity Investors in 1996, Mark was the President of Prudential Equity Investors, the private equity arm of Prudential Insurance Company of America. Mark holds a Master’s Degree in Management from the Kellogg School of Northwestern University and a Bachelor of Science in Economics from Saint Vincent College.
Anthony Gadient is Voci's President and CEO. He co-founded Voci after doing extensive research on the speech recognition market and how a lower-cost speech-to-text alternative could significantly enable better speech and text analytics. Before Voci, he co-founded Neolinear, a successful semiconductor design automation company which was acquired by Cadence Design Systems (NASDAQ:CDNS). Anthony has served in numerous executive management roles and as an officer in the US Air Force. Anthony received his BS in Electrical Engineering from the University of Virginia, his PhD in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University, and his MBA from Wright State University.
Angelo Gencarelli has focused his career on partnering with Venture Capital and Private Equity firms helping small and middle-market companies grow and achieve their strategic objectives. Currently, he is the Chief Financial Officer with The Results Companies, a global customer contact center provider. He has held similar positions at technology companies such as Equitrac Corporation and AppliedTheory Corporation, both of which were acquired in successful transactions. Angelo spent ten years in public accounting at Ernst and Young after graduating from LeMoyne College with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting.
James H. Lesko’s most recent position was Vice President of Investor Relations, for Xerox Corporation, Norwalk, Conn. He was appointed to this position in October 2004. He was elected an officer of the company in July 1993. James was responsible for the communication and interpretation of the company’s results and business strategies to shareholders and the investment community. James joined the company in 1973 and has held a variety of field and headquarter positions. He has been Senior Vice President of U.S. Field Operations and President of the Personal Products Division, the Office Document Systems Division, the Desktop Products Group, and the Xerox Supplies Group as well as President of e-Business and TeleWeb, responsible for the management and deployment of TeleWeb customer management and Xerox.com capabilities worldwide. James received a bachelor’s degree in business administration in 1973 from Gettysburg College.
Steve Robinson has been active in the Western Pennsylvania technology community for more than 25 years as both an investor and a director. As Managing General Partner of Robinson Venture Partners, Steve has invested or led investments in more than 25 early-stage companies, including Automated Health Care, Medrad, Precision Therapeutics, Neolinear, Medtrex, TimeSys, True Commerce, Quantapoint, Lifecor, Vascor, mSpoke, BitArmor, and Webmedx. He has served as a Director or Board Observer for numerous companies including mSpoke, BitArmor, Webmedx, Automated Cell, Inc., Precision Therapeutics, and Bethany Hospices Services of Western Pennsylvania, and is presently on the Advisory Board of the Donald H. Jones Center for Entrepreneurship of Carnegie Mellon University's Tepper School of Business.
Rob A. Rutenbar received his PhD from the University of Michigan in 1984 and then joined the faculty at Carnegie Mellon University. He spent 25 years in Electrical and Computer Engineering at CMU, ultimately holding the Stephen J. Jatras (E’47) Chair. In 2010, he moved to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he is currently Abel Bliss Professor and Head of Computer Science. His research has focused in three broad areas: tools and algorithms for a wide variety of integrated circuit design problems; methods to manage the messy statistics of nanoscale chip designs; and custom silicon architectures for perceptual and data analytics problems, notably in applications like speech recognition and machine learning. His work has been featured in venues ranging from EETimes to the Economist magazine. In 1998, he co-founded Neolinear, Inc. to commercialize the first practical synthesis tools for analog and mixed-signal ICs and later co-founded Voci Technologies Inc. to commercialize high-speed, high-accuracy speech recognition appliances for enterprise speech analytics applications.