—Airbnb appointed Chris Lehane as head of policy. Lehane served in the White House for six years as an advisor to Bill Clinton and was the spokesperson for Al Gore’s 2000 presidential campaign. Previously, he’s consulted for both Lyft and Airbnb on policy issues surrounding the sharing economy.
Lehane is one of a number of former political insiders to join the ranks of West Coast tech firms. Earlier this year, former Obama press secretary Jim Carney joined Amazon and Uber’s David Plouffe previously managed Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign.
Lehane told the New York Times his belief in expanding opportunities for the middle class dovetails with Airbnb’s mission. “I am committed to playing to win when it comes to standing up and fighting for the rights of everyday people to share their homes,” he said.
—Auth0 appointed two software-as-a-service veterans to its board of directors. Monica Enand and Peter van Hardenberg join Auth0’s co-founder Eugenio Pace, CEO Jon Gelsey and Bessemer Venture Partners VP Sunil Nagaraj on the board. Bellevue-based Auth0 raised $6.9 million earlier this year to build its business around identity as a service. Auth0 makes it easy for developers to add authentication services into various products, reducing the burden of implementing robust security.
“As successful entrepreneurs that have built modern SaaS businesses from scratch, both Monica and Peter will each contribute unique experiences to accelerate Auth0’s growth,” said Auth0 CEO Jon Gelsey. “Peter has deep experience running and building world-class developer tools and Monica is a seasoned, venture-backed founder and CEO with strong enterprise sales and marketing expertise.”
Enand founded the legal compliance and e-discovery platform Zapproved. She has previously held leadership positions with IBM and Intel, and currently sits on the Oregon Growth Board and the board for the Technology Association of Oregon. Van Hardenberg has a history of advising developer-oriented startups. He most recently co-founded Heroku Postgres, a SQL database service for developers.
—HackerAgency promoted Tom Reid to head up its new stand-alone Serum health insurance unit. The digital and direct marketing agency has worked in the health insurance industry since 2010, but the new business unit based in the company’s Seattle headquarters enables HackerAgency to further grow its health care-focused offerings.
“We created Serum for two reasons,” HackerAgency CEO Spyro Kourtis said, “to build out a dedicated operation to address the future growth we expect based on the continued expansion of our health care practice work, and second, to funnel and focus the team’s extensive knowledge in health insurance and broader health industry markets.”
Reid previously served as HackerAgency’s vice president of health care. Reid is now the chief strategist for Serum, expanding the company’s marketing and sales departments within the industries tight regulations.
—LiquidPlanner poached Apptio’s Aashish Dhamdhere, who will serve as the company’s vice president of marketing. Dhamdhere will drive interest in the project management technology provider.
Before starting at LiquidPlanner, Dhamdhere oversaw Apptio’s data-focused marketing team that focused on building reputation among senior IT executives and large companies. He’s also managed teams at Microsoft, leading marketing of Azure and Visio products.
“Aashish is a world-class marketer with a passion for IT and enterprise software that aligns perfectly with our mission,” said Liz Pearce, CEO of LiquidPlanner. “I’m thrilled to have him on the team and know he will help us to continue to accelerate our reach and growth.”
—Dexter + Chaney named Brian Rice as chief financial officer of the Seattle-based construction software developer. Rice will be filling the spot left by John Ulacia, who held the CFO position for 20 years.
Rice previously served as CFO and COO of LexBlog, a social media marketer, and as the first CFO of enterprise software company NetMotion Wireless.
“We’re pleased to be able add Brian to our management team. He has a strong financial and operational leadership background that will serve Dexter + Chaney well as the company continues its significant growth,” said Dexter + Chaney president Norbert Orth.
—Acucela hired George Lasezkay as the company’s executive vice president of legal affairs. Lasezkey will head the Seattle-based vision-focused biotech firm’s legal team and advise CEO Ryo Kubota on legal matters.
“As Acucela expands its position in ophthalmic healthcare, Dr. Lasezkay provides us with strategic legal advice based on his deep and wide-ranging expertise in the structuring and management of strategic partnerships and corporate strategy,” Kubota said in a press release.
Lasezkay was previously the president of HorizonPharma Group, a consultancy focused on the medical industry. He’s also served on various biotech company executive boards, and spent nearly 20 years working for Allergan in both legal and executive roles.
—Ossia hired QuickCharge inventor Abid Hussain as the Redmond-based company’s chief commercialization officer. Hussain will head development of the Cota wireless charging technology.
“Global demand for the Cota wireless power technology is staggering, and bringing Abid on board not only allows Ossia to efficiently commercialize this truly disruptive technology, but also fast tracks the processes and infrastructure needed to get this technology in the hands of the manufacturers who so desperately need it,” said Ossia CEO Hatem Zeine.
Hussain lead a team at Qualcomm to develop their QuickCharge technology, which is now available on many Android phones. He’s also held executive roles on both the technical and business side of Arrayent, Summit Microelectronics, Marvell, National Semiconductor and others.
—WatchGuard Technologies added three executives to the security hardware manufacturer‘s roster. Andrew Young is joining the team as vice president of product management, Wayson Vannatta will come on as vice president of information technology and Erik Halvorsen has been promoted to vice president of Americas sales.
“We’re on an incredible trajectory in terms of growth, innovation and industry recognition,” WatchGuard CEO Prakash Panjwani said. “Erik, Andrew and Wayson bring a wealth of experience to WatchGuard and exemplify the high-performance, industry-leading team we’ve built to sustain and accelerate WatchGuard’s momentum.”
Young will use his background in product development to help the Seattle-based company bring new software and hardware solutions to market. He previously led the product team at Gemalto, overseeing identity protection products.
Vannatta previously served as vice president of technology at InfoSpace, where he was responsible for various engineering tasks. At WatchGuard, he will lead the company’s information technology group, managing corporate applications and global infrastructure.
Halverson joined WatchGuard 12 years ago, working his way up to director of North American sales before getting his new role. As vice president of Americas sales, he’ll manage a larger group of salespeople and help fuel the company’s revenue.
—TiE Seattle, a local non-profit entrepreneurial network, named Pradeep Rathinam chapter president. Rathinam is an angel investor and active member within the group.
“It is my goal that we focus more on helping ambitious technocrats leverage TiE to start, scale or help startups,” Rathinam said.
Rathinam currently works at Harman, leading the audio company’s transition into a software-led business. He came to Harmen when it purchased Aditi, a company he led as a CEO. He’s also worked at Microsoft, serving as general manager of the company’s independent software vendor group.
—Daniel Swedlow joined Summit Law Group as a partner in the Seattle-based firm’s labor and employment group. Swedlow will advise Summit clients when working on collective bargaining strategies and help them negotiate with unions and labor groups.
Swedlow previously worked with Teamsters Local 117, helping the union and employees bargain with their employers. He’s also worked for Group Health Cooperative, navigating labor rules for the healthcare group.