Speakers Gallery

Jeff Sosa

Jeff Sosa / Senior Director of Product Management

Jeff Sosa is the Senior Director of Product Management at Virident. He joined Virident in 2011 to lead the product management efforts for all company products, including the company’s expansion into MLC products and the FlashMAX II Product Line and related software. Prior to Virident, Jeff was Sr. Director of Product Management at Fusion-io, responsible for the ioDrive product line and related management software, and DataDomain as Director of Product Management where he drove the expansion of DataDomain products into the Archiving space. Jeff has also served in product management roles at Pathscale(QLogic), Network Appliance, and Brocade Communications. Jeff started in software engineering and engineering management roles, including over a decade at Tandem Computers. He holds a BS in Mathematics and MS in Computer Engineering from the California State University, and an MBA from Santa Clara University.


Vijay Karamcheti

Vijay Karamcheti, Ph.D. / Chief Technology Officer and Co-Founder

Dr. Karamcheti has over 15 years of experience in designing and developing technologies at the leading edge of parallel and distributed computer systems architecture, middleware, and application frameworks.

From 1998 through 2009, Dr. Karamcheti was a member of the faculty of the Computer Science Department at the Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences at New York University, most recently holding the position of Associate Professor with tenure. Dr. Karamcheti led the Parallel and Distributed Systems group and conducted research in the area of high-performance cluster and grid computing. Dr. Karamcheti also spent a sabbatical year as a Visiting Research Scientist at Google, Inc. as part of the core Systems Infrastructure team, gaining a deeper understanding of the opportunities and challenges of massive web scale-out system infrastructures.

Dr. Karamcheti received his undergraduate degree from the Indian Institute of Technology at Kanpur, India, and his master's degree from the University of Texas at Austin. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.


Ken Grohe / Vice President Worldwide Customer Operations

Ken Grohe is our Vice President Worldwide Customer Operations. Ken has responsibility for worldwide sales, technical pre sales, inside sales, strategic partnerships, channels, and sales operations.

Ken joins Virident from EMC where he led many of the growth products, programs, and divisions during his 25 year career. Most recently, Ken led EMC Flash Products  Division's Global Customer Operations helping customers get Storage Class Memory performance in microseconds from flash solutions. He helped EMC build the Flash teams and established many of the initial solid state, memory, storage, and software solutions and customer wins. Prior to that, he grew throughout his career from a sales executive, district sales leadership and as an Area Manager. He was promoted to lead the adoption and integration of the Clariion mid-tier product line from acquisition to presently over $4B annually, the creation of the Global xSP’s (now the $2B+ Service Providers and Cloud Division), developed the Velocity Partner Program (over $10B Globally), and the Software Partner Program in 2010. Ken brings a combination of deep sales experience, leadership and broad market experiences across high growth and disruptive opportunistic markets.

Ken @LeverageFlash, graduated from Boston College's Carroll School of Management in 1989.


Zia Rehman / Sr. Director, Business Development

Mr. Rehman is responsible for driving the company-wide strategic planning process and identifying opportunities for technology collaboration and targeted strategic relationships.

Prior to Virident, most recently at NetApp he was part of the Worldwide Channel organization where he developed and implemented the sales and channel strategy for NetApp’s Cloud Service Provider Program. His responsibilities included recruiting partners and helping them develop their branded Cloud Services built on NetApp technology, coordinating activities globally across Sales, Business Development, Solution Development & Marketing. He also helped the Cloud Service Provider partners establish relationships with NetApp’s Reseller partners to facilitate selling through the Channel. Before NetApp, he was part of the Business Development team at Veritas, which was acquired by Symantec.

Mr. Rehman holds an MBA from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania, an MS in Computer Engineering from Syracuse University and a BS in Computer Science from the Manipal Institute of Technology in India.


Walter Hinton

Walter Hinton / Sr. Director of Field Marketing

Walter Hinton is the Sr. Director of Field Marketing. He has more than 20 years of experience in storage and networking. Most recently he served as a consultant to Hitachi Data Systems in Cloud and Big Data strategies. Prior to HDS he was Vice President of Sales and Marketing at cloud storage provider Digi-Data. Before Digi-Data he was CTO of storage service provider ManagedStorage International. Prior to that he served as Chief Strategist for StorageTek where he helped create the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA). He also worked in product management at McDATA and NEC America. Walt has an MBA from University of Denver and a BA from William Jewell College.


Earle F. Philhower, III


Earle F. Philhower, III / Technical Marketing Manager

Earle F. Philhower, III has over 6 years of experience in benchmarking high performance solid state storage systems at Virident Systems. In his time at Virident he’s helped tune Virident’s products and architectures to meet the needs of customers in Asia, Europe, and the Americas. His hands-on experience covers a broad spectrum of enterprise use cases: from databases, caches, virtualization, and HPC codes to bespoke C++ and JAVA applications.

Prior to his time at Virident in technical marketing and engineering, he spent several years at VxTel, where he was the first employee of the company. There he developed highly parallel and scalable ASIC RISC/DSP processors, from architecture to layout to application coding, and systems-on-a-chip to support the burgeoning VoIP market. At Intel, which acquired VxTel in 2001, he spent several years working on the top-level integration of extremely large communications systems-on-a-chip.

Mr. Philhower holds a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering from Drexel University, Philadelphia. He received his Master’s degree in the same from University of California, Irvine. In 2006 he received his MBA from INSEAD, France and Singapore, with a focus on entrepreneurship and technology.


Sunil Samel


Sunil Samel / VP, Strategic Partnerships

Mr. Samel is responsible for establishing and managing engagements with Virident’s strategic partners. Earlier at Virident, he has also been responsible for product management and early customer wins.

Mr. Samel has over 20 years of experience spanning software, semiconductor and storage markets, and securing early wins with lighthouse customers in multiple geographies – Europe, Asia-Pacific and the US.

Before Virident, Mr. Samel was co-founder at CoWare (acquired by Synopsys) and at Six-F Systems. The CoWare technology came out of his work with a research team at IMEC Belgium, which pioneered the system level design methodology and integrated software tools for designing complex system-on-chips (SoCs). Six-F Systems was a fabless semi startup developing SoCs with a novel hardware-software architecture for concurrent, multi-standard mobile communications. Earlier, he worked with TCS, India on several projects with technology leaders like Philips Belgium, Bell Northern Research and Bell Labs.

Mr. Samel holds a Bachelor’s degree from the Institute of Technology, BHU, India and a Master’s degree from the University of Antwerp, Belgium.


Shrish Jamthe


Shrish Jamthe / Senior Director Systems Engineering

Mr. Jamthe leads the world-wide systems engineering team at Virident Systems. At Virident, he has also led the product development for Virident’s NOR Flash-based MySQL Appliance. Prior to Virident, he was a vice president of Investment Research Systems at Putnam Investments, where he developed large research databases and quantitative investment models for both equity and fixed income investments. Prior to Putnam, Mr. Jamthe was co-founder and CTO of a revolutionary mobile startup Coola Inc. He brings more than 20 years of experience in designing and deploying technology at large corporations. He began his career at Tata Motors, India’s largest automobile company.

Mr. Jamthe holds an MBA from Boston University and a BS from National Institute of Technology, Nagpur, India.


Kunal Vasavada


Kunal Vasavada / Systems QA Manager

Mr. Vasavada has been with Virident for over four years. As a Systems QA Manager, Mr. Vasavada supervises Virident’s quality control department, making sure products meet company and customer standards.

Before being promoted to Systems QA Manager, Mr. Vasavada was a Pre-Sales Systems Engineer at Virident. Before leading this position, he was a member of Virident’s technical staff working closely with Sales and Marketing group at Virident.

Mr. Vasavada started his career with the flash storage company as an Applications Group Intern in early 2008. He holds Bachelor’s degree in Engineering from Gujarat University, India and Master’s in Computer Science from Northwestern Polytechnic University, USA.



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