POET Technologies Discussion Forum
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Dr. Suresh Venkatesan
Chief Executive Officer
Dr. Suresh Venkatesan joined POET Technologies from GLOBALFOUNDRIES where he served most recently Senior Vice President, Technology Development at GLOBALFOUNDRIES and was responsible for the company’s Technology Research and Development. Dr. Venkatesan joined GLOBALFOUNDRIES in 2009, where he led the development and ramp of the 28nm node and was instrumental in the technology transfer and qualification of 14nm. In addition, he was responsible for the qualification and ramp up of multiple mainstream value added technology nodes.
Dr. Venkatesan is an industry veteran with over 22 years of experience in semiconductor technology development. Prior to joining GLOBALFOUNDRIES, he held various leadership positions with Freescale Semiconductor in Austin, Texas. Dr. Venkatesan holds over 25 US patents, and has co-authored over 50 technical papers. He holds a Bachelor of Technology degree in Electrical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology and Master of Science and PhD degrees in Electrical Engineering from Purdue University
Dr. Geoff Taylor
Director & Chief Scientist (Retired 4/15/2016)
He is Chief Scientist at POET Technologies and has led development of the Planar Optoelectronic Technology (POET) platform over the past two decades, directing a focused team at the ODIS subsidiary of POET. Dr. Taylor possesses an extraordinary technical background made-up of 30 years of design and development experience in electronic and optical device physics, circuit design, opto-electronic technology, materials and applications. He is concurrently a Professor of Electrical Engineering and Photonics at the University of Connecticut and is responsible for ODIS’ development efforts at the gallium arsenide (GaAs) growth and fabrication facility.
With over 150 papers in the world’s most respected journals, and dozens of patents, Dr. Taylor is widely regarded as the world’s leading authority on GaAs solid-state physics, III-V opto-technology, as well as the pioneer in the development of monolithic integrated opto-electronic circuits.
Previously, Dr. Taylor served as a Distinguished Member of the technical staff at AT&T Bell Labs, developing inversion channel technology for III-V materials. At Honeywell and Texas Instruments he helped to develop critical optical technology for the Jupiter Orbital Probe as well as the development of key circuits and devices for very-large-scale-integrated (VLSI) chips. Dr. Taylor holds a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering and an M.A.Sc. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Toronto and a B.Sc. in Electrical Engineering from Queen’s University.
Dr. Adam Chowaniec
Director (retired 10/2/15)
Dr. Chowaniec retired from his position with the Company on February 10th, 2015.
POET has benefited tremendously from Dr. Chowaniec's industry experience and his guidance throughout the transformation of the Company since first joining the Board in April of 2013.
He was part of the "Special Strategic Committee" that helped the Company recognize the inherent value of its intellectual property for the semiconductor industry, and participated in the creation of what POET is today: one of the leading firms offering a new manufacturing paradigm to further the semiconductor industry roadmap.
"On behalf of the Company and the Board, we thank Adam for his many contributions during his tenure," said Mr. Copetti.
He was previously the founding Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Chairman of Tundra Semiconductor (acquired by Integrated Device Technology), Chairman of Zarlink (acquired by Microsemi), and Chairman of Bel Air Networks (acquired by Ericsson). Previously, he was President and CEO of Calmos Systems, acquired by Newbridge Networks and renamed Newbridge Microsystems, where he served as President and as a Vice President of Newbridge Networks.
He had also served on the boards of SiberCore Technologies, Liquid Computing, Microbridge, GEAC, Amiga, and Solantro Semiconductor.
Dr. Chowaniec held an M.Sc. in Electrical Engineering from Queen’s University, as well as both a B.Sc. and a Ph.D. from the University of Sheffield.
In 2010, he was recognized by the California Computer Museum as one of the founding fathers of the personal computer.
Todd A. DeBonis
Todd A. DeBonis is a veteran semiconductor executive with over 27 years of expertise in sales, marketing and corporate development. For the last decade, he was the Vice President of Global Sales and Strategic Development at TriQuint Semiconductor.
During his tenure TriQuint experienced dramatic growth and recognition in the industry as the technology leader in RF solutions. Mr. DeBonis played an integral part in the recent merger with RFMD and subsequent creation of Qorvo, Inc.
He previously held the position of Vice President, Worldwide Sales and Marketing at Centillium Communications. He also served as the Vice President, Worldwide Sales for Ishoni Networks and Vice President, Sales & Marketing for the Communications Division of Infineon Technologies North America.
Mr. DeBonis has a B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Nevada.
David E. Lazovsky
David E. Lazovsky is the founder of Intermolecular (NASDAQ:IMI) and served as the company's President and Chief Executive Officer and as a member of the board of directors from September 2004 to October 2014.
Mr. Lazovsky has an in‐depth knowledge of the semiconductor industry, technology and markets, having raised significant amounts of venture capital and other strategic private investments in Intermolecular's initial public offering.
Prior to founding Intermolecular, Mr. Lazovsky held several senior management positions at Applied Materials (NASDAQ:AMAT). From 1996 through August 2004, he held management positions in the Metal Deposition and Thin Films Product Business Group where he was responsible for managing more than $1 billion in Applied Materials' semiconductor manufacturing equipment business.
From 2003 until 2004, Mr. Lazovsky managed key strategic accounts in Business Management where he worked closely with leading integrated circuit manufacturers to ensure Applied Materials was developing and providing cutting‐edge technology solutions.
From 2002 until 2003, Mr. Lazovsky served as the Technology Program Manager for the Endura 2 Platform, Applied Materials' flagship 300mm metal deposition platform. From 2000 until 2002, he was based in Grenoble, France and served as Director of Business Management for the European region in the Metal Deposition Product Business Group. Previously, he served as a Business Manager from 1997 to 2000, Account Product Manager from 1995 to 1997.
Mr. Lazovsky holds a B.S. in mechanical engineering from Ohio University and, as of March 31, 2014, held 41 pending or issued U.S. patents.
Mr. Warrior has been president and chief executive officer (CEO) of Alfalight Inc. since February 2004. Alfalight, Inc is a GaAs based high power diode laser manufacturing company with headquarters in Madison, Wisconsin. Alfalight serves military, telecom and industrial customers.
He continues to run the defense and security segments of Alfalight, focused on providing solid-state laser systems for targeting, tracking and illumination applications to the US military.
Prior to joining Alfalight, his career includes 15 years at Motorola Semiconductors (now Freescale) where he most recently led the test and assembly operations, a group of 3500 employees, in the US, Scotland and Korea.
Mohan previously held senior-level leadership positions at Motorola including managing operations for silicon wafer fabrication, and leading a global team of scientists and engineers to develop advanced packaging solutions.
Following Motorola, Mr. Warrior gained a successful track record as an entrepreneur launching two start-ups. Immediately prior to Alfalight, Mr. Warrior was the president and CEO of Nanocoolers, a thin film thermoelectric cooling company in Austin, Texas.
He received a BS degree in Chemical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), New Delhi, an MS degree in Chemical Engineering from Syracuse University, and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University. He was also a founding charter member of the Austin chapter of TiE (The IndUS Entrepreneurs), a non-profit global network of entrepreneurs and professionals and is currently a charter member of TiE Midwest.
Mr. Warrior has also served as a reviewer for both the Texas State Education Board for Advanced Research Programs (Material Science) and the National Science Foundation (Electronic Materials).
COO (retired 8/6/2015)
Mr. Gagnon retired from his position as Chief Operating Officer on August 6th, 2015, succeeded by Dr. Deshmukh.
His day-to-day responsibilities included both operational and reporting functions. He was responsible for reporting to Senior Management on all operational matters and collaborated with executive management in the driving of planning, research and development, milestone execution, procurement of equipment, contract negotiations, business development, and monetization, as well as the optimization of cooperation between internal and external stakeholders such as third party fabs.
Mr. Gagnon has over 20 years of experience in the semiconductor, telecommunication and processor industry. Before joining POET Technologies, Stephane's most recent role was Senior Director of Product Management for Integrated Device Technology (IDT) where he drove business strategy for the RapidIO® switching and IP product line.
His primary responsibilities included overall strategy and product marketing, in addition to business development and the management of international customers and partner relationships. Mr. Gagnon became involved with the RapidIO Trade Association (RTA) Technical Working Group 13 years ago and has held the position of Chairman of the RTA Steering Committee for over 3 years.
Prior to his role at IDT and Tundra Semiconductor Corporation, which was acquired by IDT, Stephane held positions at Motorola and Nortel Networks and holds a BSc in Computer Engineering from Laval University.
CTO / VP Product Development (retired 8/6/2015)
Mr. DeSimone retired from his position as VP Product Development on June 8th, 2015, succeeded by Dr. Basak.
Prior to joining POET, he was most recently Senior Manager, Test and Wafer Sort Engineering, at Fairchild Semiconductor.
Under his leadership, the Fairchild team achieved significant increases in quality and yield during wafer production in several 0.5 and 0.35 micron CMOS/BiCMOS/BiPolar technologies.
In addition to manufacturing experience, Mr DeSimone brings to the Company two distinct experiences: strategic product roadmap definition - addressing server and storage vertical markets; and broad integrated circuit development encompassing analog mixed signal through large digital application specific integrated circuits.
Vice President of Technology (partially retired 31/10/2014)
Mr. Christopher Lee Shepherd retired from his full-time position on October 31st, 2014, succeeded in the role by Mr. DeSimone.
He had been the Vice President of Technology of the Company since November of 2012.
Mr. Shepherd continues to provide services to the Company on an as-needed basis.
He has 29 years of experience in business, technical, and military leadership roles.
Mr. Shepherd previously founded Neterion Corporation and served as its Chief Technology Officer from 2001 to 2009. He thereafter founded IT Millwrights Corporation, and has served as its Chief Executive Officer since.
He has spent the last 18 years in the Telecommunications/Information Technology industry serving in technical, management, architecture and entrepreneurial roles of ever-increasing scope and responsibility.
He has also served as Designer, Team Leader & Architect with Bell-Northern Research and Nortel. Mr. Shepherd has a Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Applied Physics from Carleton University.
Dr. Juthika Basak
Director, Product Development
Dr. Basak joined the POET as Director, Product Development in November 2015.
Most recently, she was part of the Development Engineering team with Infinera (NASDAQ:INFN), where she led development of photonic integrated circuits and designed process flow for InP-based components.
Prior to joining Infinera, she served as Lead Scientist for Intel Corporation's (NASDAQ:INTC) Photonics Research Program.
Her core expertise is in high-speed optical devices and integrated system co-design, development and characterization. She is a published scientific author, holds several patents, and is a senior member of the IEEE -- where she also serves as Contributing Editor of the IEEE Journal of Lightwave Technology.
Dr. Basak holds a PhD in Photonics and Optoelectronics from UCLA, MSc in Electrical Engineering (UCLA), and BSc Physics (IIT).
Dr. Martin Peisl
Dr. Martin Peisl has over 33 years of management experience in Semiconductor research, development and marketing. He has served companies such as Siemens, Infineon, Qimonda, Ramaxel, and Netlist. His people and project management background includes broad international experience in Germany, Malaysia, France, China and the U.S.
Dr. Peisl was directly responsible for product development of Dynamic Random Access Memory (DRAM) generations from 64Mbit to 1Gbit. Additionally, he has supervised starting new product lines such as Mobile Random Access Memory, Reduced Latency DRAM and DRAM based Application Specific Integrated Circuits (ASICS).
Being a decades long member of the Joint Electron Device Engineering Council (JEDEC) standardization committee, Dr. Peisl has chaired the development of the predecessor of the Double Data Rate 2 (DDR2) specification within the Advanced DRAM Technology (ADT) consortium together with technical members of Intel, Samsung, Hynix, Micron and Elpida.
Mr. Rogers has over 30 years of experience in high-performance semiconductors, EDA software, and intellectual property licensing.
Having earned a BSEE from Cornell University, Mr. Rogers has held key roles with Tensilica (now Cadence Design Systems, Inc. - NASDAQ: CDNS), Silicon Architects (now Synopsys, Inc. - NASDAQ: SNPS), VLSI Technology (became Philips Semiconductor) and Applied Micro Circuits Corp. - NASDAQ: AMCC.
Dr. Subhash Deshmukh
Adviser, Special Projects
Dr. Subhash Deshmukh joined the Company as COO on June 8, 2015.
Most recently, he has been Vice President of Emerging Technologies and Products at Applied Materials, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMAT).
Prior to rejoining Applied Materials, he served as Vice President and General Manager of the Plasma Products Business Unit as well as Vice President of Business Development for Varian Semiconductor Equipment Associates Inc. (NASDAQ:VSEA). Varian Semiconductor was acquired by Applied Materials in November 2011.
Before moving to Varian Semiconductor, Dr. Deshmukh served as General Manager of the Dielectric Etch Products Division of Applied Materials. He previously served in a number of executive and management positions with increasing responsibility at Applied Materials, Lam Research, and AMI Semiconductors.
Dr. Deshmukh holds a PhD in Chemical Sciences, has authored and co-authored over 55 technical articles and has been granted over 27 patents, with several patents pending.
Leon M. Pierhal
(retired 30/9/2014) President
Mr. Pierhal retired from his position on September 30th, 2014, succeeded by Mr. Gagnon; Mr. Pierhal remains as a consultant to the Company.
He has over forty years of management experience in semiconductor, telecommunications and computing technology development companies such as Amdahl Corporation, Intel Corporation, Masstor Systems Corporation, and Jupiter Technology.
As a co-founder of POET, he participated throughout the organization's development life cycle. He steered the Company through infancy, and shepherded POET safely through turbulent change. POET has since evolved from its origins as pure R&D, to a publicly-traded going concern trading on two markets in Canada and the U.S., to where it stands today - at an inflection point, where monetization of the POET platform is on the horizon, with fully-integrated optical-electronic chips leading the way for the semiconductor industry's next generation chip technology.
As a senior management executive with broad international experience, Mr. Pierhal has had direct responsibility for P&L, sales and marketing, and corporate development for several major companies requiring strategic expertise. He has experience with capitalizing and launching technology startups, mergers and acquisitions of technology companies, as well as turning around emerging companies by developing new sales divisions, channels and strategic partners. Mr. Pierhal has assisted a significant number of companies with capital formation and re-capitalization from private and public sources. He contributed exceptional strategic and tactical vision, strong team development and leadership skills. In addition, Mr. Pierhal has impressive experience in the area of technology startup company development and serves as an Outside Board Member to several such firms as well.