Carnegie Mellon University

The ECE Advisory Council comprises a group of highly accomplished individuals and industry leaders who meet approximately twice per year to discuss the department's educational, research, and outreach activities. The Council provides input and insight regarding the department's programs and strategic goals. The council members also engage with students and faculty members in various programs helping to provide opportunities to expand, improve, and diversify the interactions of all our activities.

Council members

Head of R&D, VR Display
Google

Dr. Nikhil Balram is currently leading display R&D for all Google hardware products (including AR/VR). With over 20 years of experience, Dr. Balram is widely hailed throughout the industry and academia as an expert and innovator in video and display technologies across multiple platforms and has been an executive at several publicly listed companies including; Marvell Semiconductor Inc., National Semiconductor Corporation, and Sage and Faroudja Inc. He has significant experience in marketing, development of international business, and engineering management, with a track record of building and leading consumer IC businesses from concept to widespread market success.

He was recently honored with a Gold Stevie® Award for Executive of the Year in the Electronics category in The 9th Annual International Business Awards, a 2012 Fellow Award by the Society for Information Display (SID), and the 2011 Alumni Achievement Award by Carnegie Mellon University. Dr. Balram is also an adjunct professor of electrical engineering at Carnegie Mellon University, visiting professor of vision science at the University of California, Berkeley, a guest professor at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) in Gandhinagar, India, and serves on the Industry Advisory Board (IAB) at the School of Engineering at Santa Clara University. He has over 50 US patents granted or pending and more than 30 technical publications.

Dr. Balram received his B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Carnegie Mellon University, where he has also served on the Dean’s Leadership Council, Silicon Valley Advisory Council, and Admissions Council. He sits on the board of directors for the Foundation for Excellence, a non-profit that provides scholarships for underprivileged children.

Explorers Program Office Mission Manager
NASA Headquarters

Joy Whittington Bretthauer is a Mission Manager in the Explorers Program Office at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC). She is responsible for oversight of programmatic, cost, schedule, and technical management of NASA’s first Imaging X-ray Polarimetry Explorer (IXPE) Mission. IXPE’s principal investigator and project management are provided by Marshall Space Flight Center and the Italian Space Agency is providing a significant instrument contribution. She also serves as a diversity dialogue facilitator and is a member of the Women’s Advisory Committee.

Some career highlights include: supporting space communications networks as a Space Communications Systems Integration Manager and managing Space Act Agreements; leading a team that identified de-orbit options for the Hubble Telescope; serving as a Program Executive at Headquarters’ Earth Science Division; providing Systems Engineering & Project management for the Express Logistics Carrier (ELC) Project and delivering flight hardware to the International Space Station; serving as Fermi’s Observatory Manager and leading a diverse, international technical team from design through on-orbit delivery; serving as GSFC’s Recruiting Lead; and supporting the Landsat 7 satellite as a Command & Data Handling Engineer through integration, testing, launch and early orbit operations. She started her career as a computer engineer at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility and designed, developed, and deployed a telemetry data archiving system that supported satellite, space shuttle, and sounding rocket missions. Joy is also a published author/co-author of various technical reports and has a bachelor of science in electrical engineering degree from Carnegie Mellon. She enjoys leisure time with family and friends, encouraging others, travelling, and boating.

Senior Vice President, Strategy and Growth
Adobe Inc.

As senior vice president of Strategy & Growth for Adobe, Gloria heads corporate strategy, mergers and acquisitions, and strategic partnerships. In her 20+ years with the company, Gloria has helped usher Adobe through some of its boldest, most critical changes, from shaping its e-commerce strategy to breaking into the enterprise business and spearheading significant acquisitions. She’s held leadership roles in product management, sales operations, customer service and support, and strategic planning. Prior to Adobe, she worked at McKinsey & Company and Cadence Design Systems.

Gloria holds a BSEE from the University of Washington, an M.S. in electrical and computer engineering from Carnegie Mellon, and an MBA from Harvard Business School. She serves on the board of The Tech, an organization dedicated to developing the next generation of problem-solvers.

IBM Fellow, MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab
IBM Corporation

John Cohn is an IBM Fellow in the MIT-IBM Watson AI Research Group based in Cambridge, MA. John earned a BSEE from MIT (’81) and a Ph.D. in computer engineering from Carnegie Mellon University (‘91). John has authored more than 30 technical papers, contributed to four books and has ~120 worldwide patents. In 2005, John was elected a Fellow of the IEEE. John is active in education issues at a local, state, and national levels. In 2019, John was awarded the IEEE CAS John Choma Education award for his efforts at STEM promotion. He is so passionate about promoting STEM careers that he spent 59 days living and inventing in an abandoned steel mill as part of Discovery Channel's technical survival show "The Colony". John lives with his family in a restored 19th-century schoolhouse in Jonesville Vermont and is eager to share his love of science and technology with anyone who will listen.

President
Cadence Design Systems, Inc.

As President of Cadence, Anirudh Devgan oversees Cadence’s EDA products, including the digital implementation and signoff, functional verification, custom IC design, PCB, and packaging businesses. Additionally, he is responsible for corporate strategy, marketing, and business development functions. Prior to joining Cadence in 2012, Devgan spent seven years at Magma Design Automation as General Manager and Corporate Vice President of Magma’s Custom Design Business Unit, leading the development and introduction of several successful products. Prior to his tenure at Magma, he spent 12 years at IBM in various management and technical positions where he received numerous awards, including the IBM Outstanding Innovation Award. Devgan is an IEEE Fellow and has numerous research papers and patents.

Devgan received a Bachelor of Technology degree in electrical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in electrical and computer engineering from Carnegie Mellon University.

Chairman
Mural Ventures

Alex Hawkinson is an experienced technology entrepreneur, business executive, and thought leader. Having founded and operated multiple companies, Hawkinson has an extensive track record of more than 20 years building innovative products and businesses at all stages of scale. He has been called “the godfather of IoT” and has deep expertise spanning IoT, AI, SaaS / cloud-based software, and mobile applications in both consumer and enterprise. Most recently, Hawkinson was the founder and CEO of SmartThings, the largest consumer Internet of Things (IoT) platform in the world. Hawkinson is also an active investor in early-stage technology companies and serves as a director on several boards. A father of three, he is actively engaged with his family and community and enjoys skiing, hiking, travel, and photography. He holds a B.S. in Cognitive Science from Carnegie Mellon University.

Vice President & Chief of Staff to CEO
Arm

Dr. John Heinlein is vice president and chief of staff to the CEO of Arm, Simon Segars. He is responsible for maximizing the bandwidth and effectiveness of the CEO, coordinating executive committee and board meetings, ensuring follow-through, and running special strategic projects, including leading the team responsible for Corporate Sustainability.

Previously, he was vice president of strategic initiatives for the IP Products Group (IPG) at Arm, responsible for seeking and building opportunities for long term growth and monitoring the competitive landscape for threats to Arm’s businesses. Prior to that, he was vice president of corporate marketing and earlier vice president of marketing for the physical IP division (PDG). From 1997 through 2008 he was with Transmeta Corporation where he held numerous senior engineering and business positions. Dr. Heinlein holds a Ph.D. and M.S. from Stanford University, both in electrical engineering, and a B.S. degree in computer engineering from Carnegie Mellon University. He serves on the board of directors of The Tech in San Jose. Outside of work, he is a former scuba diving instructor and is passionate about snowboarding, endurance sports, food, and travel.

Managing Partner
Pear Ventures

Mar Hershenson is a co-founder and Managing Partner at Pear VC, a seed-stage investment firm in Palo Alto, CA backing companies like Dropbox(NASDAQ: DBX), Guardant Health(NASDAQ: GH), Doordash, Gusto, and Branch. At Pear, Mar works closely with founders to take companies from an idea to defining business. Mar has been recognized in the Midas Brink List of Top Tech Investors in 2015. Mar received her Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Stanford University in 2000 for her breakthrough work in circuit design automation, and taught the Analog Circuit Design course at Stanford for over a decade. She is currently a lecturer in the Engineering School at Stanford teaching entrepreneurship. Mar made her mark as an entrepreneur by co-founding three companies: Barcelona Design, Sabio Labs, and Revel Touch. She ran each company from day one, being deeply involved in all aspects of the business, including product definition and development, business strategy, sales, recruiting, and financing. Post the acquisition of Sabio labs, Mar served as VP of Product Development for Magma Design Automation's Mixed Signal division. Mar has received many awards throughout her career. Among them, the renown T35 Young Innovator Award by MIT (for her technical work), and the prestigious Marie R. Pistilli Women in EDA Achievement Award in 2010. Mar served on the board of Palo Alto Community Child Care. Mar is also a founding member of All Raise and the Equity Summit.

Former executive in semiconductor
Retired

Charlie Huang served as a General Manager at IBM responsible for the business and strategy of its mid-range Power business in 2016 and 2017. Before that, he served as EVP Worldwide Field Operations for four years responsible for worlds wide sales and support, for Cadence Design Systems, until 2015. At Cadence, he also served as General Manager for the System & Verification Group (SVG) business unit. He is currently a former executive in semiconductor and retired.

Huang is a veteran of the electronic design automation industry, with experience as a CEO, entrepreneur, technologist, and sales. Since joining Cadence in 2001 through the successful acquisition of CadMOS, where he was co-founder and CEO, he has held a series of responsibilities in R&D, marketing, strategic investment, merger and acquisition, interim co-CEO, etc. 

In 2004 and 2005, Huang was also a General Partner at Telos Venture Partners. Before co-founding CadMOS, Huang was vice president of R&D at EPIC Design Technology and later became Vice President of R&D in the EPIC Technology Group of Synopsys.

Huang holds Bachelor of Science degrees in electrical engineering and computer science from Shanghai Jiao Tong University, and an MSEE and Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Carnegie Mellon University. Huang serves on the Board of Directors of Parade Technologies, Ltd., and advises technology companies and investors in technical software and semiconductor.

Corporate CTO
Flex

Dr. Kettler is the Corporate CTO at Flex. Dr. Kettler is leading the transformation of Flex from its roots as an EMS company to a design-led manufacturing company within the serving markets. He supports the business unit's CTO in developing consistent research and development strategies across Flex’s business groups; automotive, medical, industrial, consumer, and cloud and communications. He is also responsible for developing Flex’s key strategic silicon supplier relationships. Dr. Kettler has helped to establish Flex as a key player in the development of compute platforms for Autonomous Vehicles.

CEO
Viavi Solutions, Inc.

Oleg Khaykin is the President and CEO of Viavi Solutions, Inc. He joined Viavi in February of 2016. Prior to joining Viavi, Oleg was a Senior Advisor at Silver Lake Partners, starting in February of 2015. Prior to that, he was the President and CEO of International Rectifier (NYSE: IRF), a world leader in power management technology, since March 2008. During his tenure, he successfully turned around the company and transformed it into the world leader in power semiconductors. In January of 2015, the company was acquired by Infineon Technology AG.

From May 2003 to February 2008, Mr. Khaykin was Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer with Amkor Technology (NASDAQ: AMKR), a leading provider of semiconductor assembly and test services. As COO, he was responsible for all aspects of sales, marketing, R&D, and manufacturing operations.

Between 1999 and 2003, Oleg was with Conexant Systems/Mindspeed Technologies, where he served as Vice President of Strategy & Business Development. His responsibilities included defining Conexant’s strategy and managing business development activities, including M&A, divestitures/spin-offs, equity investments and strategic alliances.

Prior to Conexant, Mr. Khaykin spent eight years with The Boston Consulting Group, where he worked with leading European and North American companies in the high tech, biotechnology, automotive, and aerospace industries. Before that, he was a systems engineer with Motorola’s wireless infrastructure group. Oleg is also currently serving on the Board of Directors of Marvell Semiconductors and Avnet. Past independent Board memberships include Newport Corporation and Zarlink Semiconductors. Mr. Khaykin holds an MBA from Northwestern University’s J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management and a B.S. in electrical engineering (BSEE) with High University Honors from Carnegie Mellon University.

General Manager/Vice President, Semiconductor Business Unit
ANSYS, Inc.

John received his undergraduate and graduates degrees from Carnegie Mellon University. Previously, he was CEO of Gear Design Solutions (acquired by ANSYS in 2015) and a co-founder of Performance Signal Integrity (founded in 1992; acquired by Avant! in 1994) which led to Star-RCXT, and Mojave Design which led to Quartz DRC (founded in 2002; acquired by Magma in 2004). John held the position of General Manager at Magma Design Automation and has been a board member for technology and non-profit organizations.

Research and Technology, Director of R&D Information and Communication Technology
Bosch

Christopher Martin is the Director of Engineering and R+D at Robert Bosch LLC, responsible for leading research and development at the Bosch Research and Technology Center (RTC) in Pittsburgh, PA. Chris and his team continuously scout for new opportunities across business sectors relevant for Bosch, and work with best-in-class partners such as universities and US National Laboratories to create innovations that drive top-line corporate growth. In this role, he helps to guide Bosch strategy through early identification and shaping of technology and market forces in the Internet-of-Things (IoT), with a special focus on Artificial Intelligence (AI) and cybersecurity. Chris holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from Carnegie Mellon University's Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. Chris has 17+ years of experience in leveraging corporate and academic research to successful effect in identifying, creating, and transferring innovative products and services.

Vice President, Products and Solutions, Director, and Co-Founder
PDF Solutions

Dr. Kimon Michaels one of the founders of PDF Solutions, has served as Vice President, Products and Solutions since July 2010 and has been a Director since November 1995. Dr. Michaels served as Vice President, Design for Manufacturability from June 2007 through June 2010. Prior to that, Dr. Michaels served as Vice President, Field Operations for Manufacturing Process Solutions from January 2006 through May 2007. From March 1993 through December 2005, he served in various vice presidential capacities. He also served as Chief Financial Officer from November 1995 to July 1998. Dr. Michaels received a B.S. in electrical engineering and an M.S. and Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering from Carnegie Mellon University.

Partner
New Science Ventures

Vivek Mohindra joined New Science Ventures (NSV) as a Partner in April 2013. He serves on the Board of Directors of BrightVolt, Caringo, Exten Technologies, Ferric, Fuzzy Logix, PlanetiQ, Vorago Technologies, VUV Analytics and CyberOptics (NASDAQ: CYBE). He has previously served on the Board of Directors of Sensor Platforms (acquired by Audience) and GlobalFoundries. Vivek joined NSV from TPG Capital where he was an Operating Group Partner working with portfolio companies on strategy, growth and operational issues, and with deal teams on due diligence. Prior to TPG, Vivek served as Senior Vice President of Strategy and Business Transformation for Freescale Semiconductor and held several senior executive roles in Dell’s Product Group, Marketing division and as Vice President/General Manager of Dell’s North America SMB Group. Vivek joined Dell from McKinsey & Company where he was a Partner. At McKinsey, he was co–leader of McKinsey’s global Semiconductor practice, as well as its Asian High Tech & Telecoms practices based in Seoul. Vivek holds a B.E. degree in chemical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology (Roorkee) in addition to an M.B.A. and a Ph.D. in chemical engineering in semiconductor processing from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Co-Founder and CEO
Mojo Vision

Drew Perkins is the CEO of Cohere Networks, a company that is changing the game for cable operators. As a serial entrepreneur, Drew has been at the forefront of Internet technology innovation for nearly three decades.

While a computer engineering student at Carnegie Mellon University, Mr. Perkins was the lead author of the Point-to-Point Protocol (PPP), a technology that provided for the use of the Internet via the circuit-switched telephone system and enabled the early growth of the Internet. During the mid-1990s, Mr. Perkins served in various senior engineering and management roles at FORE Systems, an innovator in packet-switched Internet technology. In 1998, Mr. Perkins was a co-founder of Lightera Networks, a developer of optical switching systems for telecom networks that was acquired in 1999 by Ciena Corporation for more than $500 million. In 2000, Mr. Perkins co-founded metropolitan telecommunications service provider OnFiber Communications, later acquired by Qwest for more than $100 million. In 2001, Mr. Perkins co-founded Infinera Corporation, a vertically integrated optical networking startup that developed the world’s first large-scale photonic integrated circuits (PICs) and a family of optical networking system products implementing a digital optical architecture based on the capabilities of Infinera’s PICs. Infinera has been traded on Nasdaq since their 2007 IPO. Mr. Perkins has also held various roles in industry standards bodies and research organizations including the IETF, IEEE, OIF, ATM Forum and Internet2.

Mr. Perkins holds a B.S. in electrical engineering, computer engineering and mathematics from Carnegie Mellon University, where he has also endowed a professorship, the Drew D. Perkins Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering.

Director
Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT)

Karl Pfirrmann served in the electric utility industry for more than 38 years in leadership positions at Allegheny Energy and later the PJM Interconnection. During his tenure with PJM, he focused on expanding PJM from its traditional eastern seaboard presence to its current operating area encompassing much of the Mid-Atlantic and Mid-Western regions, developing PJM’s capabilities in both traditional utility operations and well as electricity market design and operations, and leading PJM during its transition between CEO’s. At Allegheny, Mr. Pfirrmann held senior leadership positions in planning, engineering, construction and operations in both the transmission and distribution areas of the business. Since his retirement in 2010, Mr. Pfirrmann has continued to advise clients on electric industry technical and public policy issues.

Mr. Pfirrmann is a resident of Greensburg, Pennsylvania, holds a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from Carnegie Mellon University, and is a Registered Professional Engineer in Pennsylvania. 

EVP and GM, Data Center Group
Xilinx Inc.

Salil Raje heads the Data Center Group (DCG) for Xilinx, leading a global team of engineering, sales, and marketing professionals dedicated to the data center – the fastest growing market for FPGAs. With Xilinx for 14 years, Raje most recently served as executive vice president, Software and IP Products, overseeing related strategy, design, and execution.

Before joining Xilinx, Raje was Chief Executive Officer of Hier Design Inc., which he co-founded in 2001. There, he introduced a hierarchical design and design planning tool, PlanAhead, to the FPGA design community. He oversaw Xilinx’s acquisition of Hier Design in 2004. Previously, Raje was a director at Monterey Design Systems, responsible for placement and silicon virtual prototyping technology. He started his career working in High-Level Synthesis at IBM T. J. Watson Research Center.

Raje holds a Bachelor of Technology in electrical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in computer science from Northwestern University. He holds eight patents in electronic design tools, ASIC, and FPGA designs, and has written more than 15 industry-recognized research papers.

AI, President
Argo

Peter is a seasoned leader in the development of complex, autonomy-enabled systems, as well as the organizations that build those systems. Passionate to see robotics technology change the world, Peter has consistently pursued opportunities to help make that change happen, from working on a number of commercialization projects at the National Robotics Engineering Center at Carnegie Mellon University, to being part of the formative team that launched Uber’s self-driving car efforts. His core robotics work spans computer vision, perception, path planning and control, and simulation-based robotic system development and testing. He has also led numerous human-centric robotic interface programs that leverage underlying autonomy technologies to aid human operators at multiple levels of interaction. Peter holds a master’s degree (1993) and a Ph.D. (1998) in electrical and computer engineering from Carnegie Mellon University, and a bachelor’s degree (1991) in electrical engineering from University of Detroit-Mercy.

Co-founder
Incite.org

Matt started at Apple, building the software team for 10 generations of the iPod, was one of the first engineers on the original iPhone and was involved in the development of 5 iPhone generations, and the first iPad. As co-founder of Nest, Matt built the team that built the first machine learning thermostat and the leading connected home brand. Now, as co-founder of Incite.org, Matt looks for the first-movers that will cause positive, catalytic change in the venture capital, non-profit and political space.

Principal
Rudolph Consulting Services LLC

Jane Rudolph is a Principal with Rudolph Consulting Services LLC, which provides strategy and business development professional services to the defense and government IT industries. Prior to her current role, Jane retired as a senior executive from Lockheed Martin in 2011 with over 30 years of service, including with the predecessor companies of IBM and Loral. Throughout her career with Lockheed Martin, Jane held various business and technical leadership roles including Vice President of Lockheed Martin Corporate Strategic Planning, Vice President of Business Development for Lockheed Martin Transportation and Security Solutions, Vice President of Homeland Security Systems, and Vice President of FAA Programs at Lockheed Martin Air Traffic Management. These positions provided her extensive experience in P&L management, strategic planning, competitive business capture, mergers and acquisitions, and technical project management in both the US and internationally. A graduate of Carnegie Mellon University, she has a B.S. in electrical engineering and engineering and public policy. She received her M.S. in electrical engineering from the University of Virginia. Lockheed Martin selected Jane to attend the Sloan Fellows Program at the School of Management at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where she received her MBA. Jane served as the Lockheed Martin University Executive for Carnegie Mellon from 2001 through 2011. She also represented Lockheed Martin on the Montgomery County Business Roundtable for Education starting in 2002 and was the chairperson of their Board of Directors from 2004 to 2007.

CEO
Proxmal Systems

Archana Sathaye is the CEO & Founder of Proxmal Systems, a proximity–based safety device company. She had a career spanning industry, academia, and non-profits. She was a Principal Engineer at Digital Equipment Corporation. She was a tenure track professor in Computer Science at San Jose State University, adjunct professor in the Business School at Santa Clara University, and adjunct professor in the Electrical Engineering Department at The University of Pittsburgh. She has 28 peer-reviewed publications from her time in academia & industry. She has served on the Board of Directors of the: Foothill-DeAnza College Foundation Board in her tenure as a Member, Vice-President, and President, Tech Museum of Innovation, Advisory Board Member of the Science Learning Institute, Air Systems Foundation Scholarship Board, and Advisory Board Member of Sunday Friends Foundation. Archana has a Ph.D. in ECE from Carnegie Mellon University, a Masters in Applied Mathematics from Virginia Tech, and a Masters in Mathematics from University of Mumbai.

General Partner
Cervin Ventures

Shirish Sathaye is a General Partner at Cervin Ventures with a focus on investments in next-generation enterprise software, cloud-based software, wireless and wireline networking, storage infrastructure and systems. Prior to Cervin, Shirish was a General Partner at Formation 8. He was also a General Partner at Khosla Ventures from 2010 to 2013 and a General Partner at Matrix Partners from 2001 to 2010. Shirish’s prior investments include Aruba Networks (NASDAQ:ARUN), Nutanix (NASDAQ:NTNX), Grandis (acquired by Samsung), Solidcore Systems (acquired by McAfee), Aviatrix, and Vectra.AI. Shirish’s investing career was preceded by a long operating career at technology companies. He helped build two venture-backed companies, FORE Systems (NASDAQ:FORE) and Alteon Websystems (NASDAQ:ATON), and led the design and development of their core products. Both companies pioneered important new product categories and had very successful IPOs. Shirish ran the Engineering Group at FORE Systems, a pioneer in ATM Switched Networks. FORE went public in 1994 and was eventually sold to Marconi for $4B. In 1997 Shirish joined Alteon Websystems, which created the server-load-balancer product category, as its VP of Engineering and later, its CTO. Alteon went public in 1999 and was acquired by Nortel for $7.8B. Shirish began his career at Digital Equipment Corporation first in the Semiconductor group and then in the Network Architecture & Software Group. Shirish has a Ph.D. from Carnegie Mellon University in Electrical & Computer Engineering.

National Technology Officer & Head of Strategy
Microsoft India

As National Technology Officer and Head of Strategy for Microsoft India, Rohini is responsible for leading strategic initiatives to accelerate digital transformation across industries and the government. Her 25-year career includes R&D at AT&T Bell Laboratories in the US as well as strategy consulting at the Boston Consulting Group and IBM Global Business Services, working with clients across India and other emerging markets. Rohini was recently recognized among the top-10 most influential analytics leaders in India in 2019, by the Analytics India Magazine. She earned her Ph.D. in Computer Engineering from UT Austin and holds an MBA from Wharton.