Pleased to meet you: 6 Austin tech companies with new executives at the helm

March 11, 2019

Not even a shorter month could slow down the executive hirings throughout Austin tech. Six companies welcomed new faces throughout February, including a handful of new CEOs. Take a look.


Mark Hammer
Chief Executive Officer

On top of several big promotions earlier in the year, Bloomfire made a change at the top this past month when it named Mark Hammer as CEO. Hammer served as the knowledge-sharing company’s COO since 2014 and brings to the position more than 20 years of software experience. Before Bloomfire, Hammer held senior management roles at SmartBear Software, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and Compass Learning.


Sharon McCollum
Chief Financial Officer

Last summer, Cosential closed $34 million in funding, coming in strong for the 20-year-old company’s first major go at fundraising. Following the strategic investment from JMI Equity, and the recognition as JBKnowledge 2018 Construction Technology Report’s leading CRM provider for the second year in a row, the company has now appointed Sharon McCollum as chief financial officer. McCollum’s career includes 35 years of experience supporting strategy, management, financial planning and operations. Before Cosential, she was VP of operations at Epicor Software, and CFO at Silicon Labs and Guaranty Bank.


Greg Drewganis
Head of Digital Growth

Fitness and wellness coaching platform Ladder made six executive hires recently as it plans for its next stage of growth. Joining the startup are President Tom Digan, Director of Product Justin Forte, Director of Design Chad Geraci, Director of Magic Zach Allia, Head of Recruiting Jamie Brooks, and Head of Digital Growth Greg Drewganis.

Digan comes to Ladder after 11 years at Sorin Capital Management, where he was a partner. He was also one of Ladder’s earlier investors and has supported the company as a board member since 2016.

Forte has worked for a number of startups prior to joining Ladder, including Mautic, where he led as senior director, as well as Layer, ShippingEasy and Applause.

As Ladder’s new director of design, Geraci will oversee user experience, product design and branded content. Geraci’s experience includes his role as creative director at PayPal, senior UX designer at Apple, and UX manager and team lead for Amazon’s Whole Foods team.

Allia’s role as director of magic entails taking the lead on special projects involving web development. Allia founded Free Gifts, one of the most downloaded Facebook apps; the Google Extensions network 64 Pixels; and he co-founded Soma, which develops eco-friendly water filtration systems.

A former senior manager in digital marketing for Playboy Enterprises and Encyclopedia Britannica, Drewganis will lead Ladder’s paid growth strategies, campaigns and initiatives as director of digital growth. He joins Ladder from Beachbody, the wellness company behind P90X, Insanity, 21 Day Fix, Beachbody on Demand, and Shakeology.

Brooks, Ladder’s new head of recruiting, was an early employee at Uber and served as the company’s second international recruiter. He also previously worked for Wayfair to build out its global custom supply chain network and most recently worked for ofo, where he hired the first 100 U.S.-based employees.


Niccolo de Masi
President of Products and Solutions, Chief Innovation Officer

Resideo Technologies has named board member Niccolo de Masi as its new president of products and solutions and chief innovation officer. In his role, de Masi will lead the company’s strategies for its suite of products that includes security systems, connected products, cameras, sensors, water leak detectors and more. Before Resideio, de Masi served as president of consumer electronics brand Essential Products. He also ran two public companies as CEO before turning 30 years old at Glu Mobile and Monstermob Group PLC.


David Hoodis
Chief Executive Officer

Following President and CEO Steven Richards’s announcement to retire from Mood Media earlier this year, the company has appointed David Hoodis as CEO. Hoodis’ experience includes over 30 years in leadership roles supporting the retail industry. He comes to Mood Media from IRI, where he was president of retail. His background also includes CEO and co-founder of Snack Box, VP of software strategy and innovation at NCR, president and COO of Modell’s Sporting Goods, and VP of innovation and operations at Walmart.


Chris Hyams
Chief Executive Officer

Effective April 1, Chris Hyams will take over as Indeed CEO for Hisayuki Idekoba (Deko), who will continue to support the company as chief operating officer and as a board member. Hyams has worked at Indeed for eight years, starting as SVP of product before moving into the president role in 2015.


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