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Chee Chew. (Twilio photo)

Cloud communications firm Twilio snagged Amazon’s Chee Chew to be its chief product officer. Chew was VP of consumer engagement at Amazon, where he worked on the core retail experience.

Prior to that, he was VP of engineering at Google, focusing on Voice and Hangouts. He also oversaw Google’s growing presence in the Seattle area, as site director for the search giant’s operations in Kirkland and Seattle. Before Google, the MIT-trained computer scientist spent 14 years at Microsoft as a general manager.

Twilio debuted as a public company in 2016 with a $1.2 billion valuation, and its stock has risen around 400 percent since then. Now trading at about $98 per share, the company’s market value stands near $10 billion. Former Amazon product manager Jeff Lawson founded Twilio in Seattle before relocating it to the Bay Area in 2009.

Chew will be based in Seattle and will commute to Twilio’s product development centers in the San Francisco Bay Area and Estonia. The company does not have a Seattle office and declined to share plans for hiring in the region.

“As an engineer by trade, I’m extremely passionate about helping Twilio continue to build APIs and SDKs that will empower developers,” Chew said in a statement. “I’m excited to join Twilio and help developers and innovative businesses around the world build contextual and intelligent communications that will reinvent how companies engage with their customers.”

Brian Bonlender. (Washington State Department of Commerce photo)

Brian Bonlender is moving on from the Washington State Department of Commerce, where he has served as director since 2013. His replacement hasn’t been named, and deputy director Connie Robins is acting director in the interim.

Bonlender has been a vocal proponent of Seattle-area tech, bolstering the life sciences industry and promoting the CoMotion innovation hub at the University of Washington. He’s worked under Jay Inslee in some capacity for well over a decade. Bonlender didn’t share future plans but said that he wanted to spend more time with family.

“One thing that drew me to Commerce is the breadth of issues I was able to work on — from local government infrastructure, to energy, homelessness and housing, and economic development. Hopefully, I will be able to continue working on these issues in my next incarnation, possibly working at or as a consultant to businesses and/or non-profits that need to successfully interact with government or communicate with the public,” Bonlender said in a statement.

Tim Stone. (Photo via LinkedIn)

—Less than a year after he jumped from Amazon to Snap, Tim Stone is resigning from his position as CFO of the social media company. Prior to Snap, Stone was Amazon’s VP of physical stores and oversaw the integration of Whole Foods. He also held a number of high-level finance positions during more than two decades with Amazon.

“Tim has made a big impact in his short time on our team and we are very grateful for all of his hard work,” Snap CEO Evan Spiegel wrote in a memo to employees that was obtained by TechCrunch. “I know we have all benefitted from his customer focus and the way he has encouraged all of us to operate as owners.”

The company said Stone’s departure was not related to “any disagreement with us on any matter relating to our accounting, strategy, management, operations, policies, regulatory matters, or practices (financial or otherwise).” Stone will stay on as CFO during a transition period.

Nick Taylor. (Modus photo)

—Home escrow startup Modus celebrated its first birthday by hiring Zillow veteran Nick Taylor as vice president of sales. Taylor was previously senior director of real estate sales and strategy at Zillow, where he has worked for the past nine years.

Modus was founded by Alex Day, Jai Sim and Abbas Guvenilir with the goal of streamlining the home closing process. The company has 19 employees and raised an undisclosed sum last year in a round led by Mucker Capital. Both Modus and its primary competitor, JetClosing, are based in Seattle.

“I’m excited to join a team that is motivated to reimagine a different stage of the purchase and sale experience, home closing. The ingredients that made Zillow Group a success like talent, vision and a focus on delighting consumers through innovation, are cornerstones within the Modus team, and I’m excited to make our mark in the industry,” Taylor said in a statement.

Bill Bryant, a longtime Seattle venture capitalist and entrepreneur, is reportedly transitioning to venture partner at DFJ, the Silicon Valley firm that’s rebranding under the new name Threshold Ventures. He previously served as partner. More here.

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