Charlie is the technical architect of PotaVida’s Smart Solar Purifier. He led the effort that won a Rockefeller-funded international design competition. In bringing this novel water purifier to market, he saw that many aid interventions suffer from a lack of user uptake, and a lack of accurate data on outcomes. PotaVida subsequently focused on capturing accurate behavioral data in the field to address these unmet needs of aid organizations.
He has a BS in engineering from Harvey Mudd College and a Ph.D. in electrical engineering from the University of Washington. His dissertation work was on novel interfaces for enabling individuals to control prostheses and computers using individual neurons in the brain. As a feedback control systems engineer by training, he sees in many challenges an opportunity to close feedback loops to create lasting and scalable change.
Tyler has a background in public policy and economics, and 3 years of field work experience in developing countries. Tyler was the PI for Technology and Social Change at the University of Washington for a 6-country study of benefits and costs of access to information and communication technology. Tyler builds the business models and leads PotaVida’s grant writing efforts. A Ph.D. candidate at the Evans School of Public Policy, Tyler's dissertation work is third party certification of environmental goods. His research experience also includes economic modeling of subsistence economies in Indonesia and development of principles and standards for benefit cost analysis for social programs.
Jackie oversees biological compliance and has conducted field trials in Nicaragua and Zambia. She is an expert in evaluating and implementing health solutions in low-resource settings. She is an assistant professor of biomedical engineering at Purdue University, and holds a PhD in bioengineering and a certificate in Global Health from the University of Washington. She is an expert in pathogen detection disinfection and engineering solutions that improve global health. Jackie has extensive global health implementation experience, including leading an assessment of user response and usage of improved cooking stoves for Engineers Without Borders in rural Bolivia. Jackie has taught at MIT, Harvard, and Boston University.
Randy Strash is a 34-year veteran of World Vision, credited with launching a number of programs and campaigns that yielded over $1B cash and $10B in-kind donations during his tenure. He has extensive field experience in several countries in Africa, including opening World Vision's office in Rwanda, and is well connected in the water, sanitation, and hygiene sector domestically and internationally.
Sarah helped lead five venture-backed companies through rapid growth periods, changes of strategies, fundraising, and acquisitions. Sarah has been a CMO at a publically traded company, Market Leader, acquired by Trulia in 2013. She is a passionate leader with a deep commitment to marketing and sales strategies. Sarah advises PotaVida on marketing and sales strategy.
As a veteran of small start-up ventures and large multinational companies, Ron brings a diverse set of business experiences and technical knowledge. His specialties include product development planning, ramping products to volume production, and engineering management of hardware and software development. Previously the VP of engineering at Impinj and Snupi, Ron now operates a consulting firm. He has been advising PotaVida since 2013, helping us select contractors for engineering design, rapid prototyping, and user interface design.
Steve Handley is an experienced CEO, CFO, an angel investor, and a mentor with the Life Science Washington mentoring program. Steve has spent the last 10 years as CFO of Festival Transactions Services, and currently advises PotaVida around topics of financial modeling and fundraising. Steve holds a MBA from Harvard Business School and a mechanical engineering degree from Georgia Tech. Steve has advised PotaVida since 2015.
Matt Ellingson advises PotaVida on partnership development and on creating value for partner aid organization. Matt has over 20 years of experience working in aid and international development including East, Southeast and Central Asia, Europe, East, South and Sub-Sahara Africa, South and Central America as well as Haiti-- where he launched PotaVida’s first pilot program. Matt brings a wealth of relationships with aid organizations, including Food for the Hungry, World Concern, and Samaritan's Purse. Matt has also served on the World Food Program Innovative Fund Working Group, the FAO/WFP coordinated Global Food Security Cluster, and is an active member of the ACCORD Network. Matt currently represents Food for the Hungry and is based in Washington State.