Power Moves: A look at recent tech hires around DC - Technical.ly DC

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Aug. 13, 2018 12:21 pm

Power Moves: A look at recent tech hires around DC

Vemo Education, Hatch Apps and TransitScreen are among the tech companies making key hires.

Job seekers mingle at NET/WORK DC 2017.

(Photo by Tajha Chappellet-Lanier)

Power Moves is a column where we chart the comings and goings of talent across the region. Got a new hire, new gig or promotion? Email us.


Earlier this summer, Shanaz Chowdhery began a new role at Vemo Education as General Manager for Alternative Education. Joining the Oakton, Va.–based edtech company after more than four years serving as D.C. Regional Director for General Assembly, Chowdhery said she was motivated to continue working on a model of financing that’s designed to increase access to education after GA partnered with Opportunity@Work for a pilot program called Learn and Earn. She said it was “an incredibly inspiring and humbling experience.”

Vemo Education specializes in offering income share agreements, in which students pay less upfront for a program by pledging to pay a set portion of income upon securing a job. Chowdhery will lead the startup’s work with programs falling outside traditional degree programs, such as coding schools. She said it was an “incredibly difficult and complex decision” to leave GA, and remains deeply committed to the mission there.

“We’re all fighting the same fight, which is pursuing the path of education access and equity,” Chowdhery said. She said she would continue to keep ties with students at General Assembly and the community. “There’s nothing you could do to keep me way from the D.C. tech community,” she said.

At General Assembly D.C., Paul Gleger assumed responsibilities as director. Gleger previously served in the role and helped open the D.C. campus before becoming a Senior Regional Director for GA. In a recent conversation, Gleger said he is now returning to being fully focused on D.C., and will set to work on expanding General Assembly’s work with the federal government.

Last week, Vemo Education had more hiring news. The company announced that Katie Blot is joining as Chief Operating Officer and Senior Vice President of Strategy. As first reported by the Washington Business Journal, Blot most recently served as Chief Strategy and Portfolio Officer at Blackboard, where she spent a decade. She is also a former CIO of the U.S. Department of Education’s Federal Student Aid program.

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“Her deep experience helping colleges and universities leverage technology to improve student success will make her an invaluable partner to schools that want to build income-based tuition models to create new pathways to economic mobility for students,” Vemo Education CEO Tonio DeSorrento said in a statement.

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Hatch Apps, the D.C. startup that makes a platform to automate the process of building custom apps, is continuing to hire following a string of recent fundraising news.

Paul Klein joined the startup as Chief of Staff. Klein said the position has flexibility to address the needs of the organization at a particular time, but he’ll look to focus on recruiting and building culture in the immediate term.  Klein joined following three years at flower delivery startup UrbanStems. Klein said he was inspired by Hatch Apps’ focus on values and the platform’s power to help build both apps and organizations.

Kalliopi Vlastos recently joined Hatch Apps as Vice President of Sales. Vlastos previously worked at Reston, Va.–based GoCanvas in a variety of roles including VP of Sales.

And last week, Heather Grace, also formerly of GoCanvas, joined as business development representative.

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TransitScreen made a key hire as part of a global expansion strategy. Diego Canales joined the D.C. startup as Global Data Partnerships Manager.

The company, which makes displays showing the availability of nearby transit options that can be placed in publicly-accessible spaces, is looking to build on growth across North America and to European cities like London, Paris, Dublin. Key to entering new markets is accessing data about transportation options in those cities.

Canales previously worked at the World Bank and World Resources Institute, where he got experience with transportation data.

“I am very excited to be joining the TransitScreen team,” he said in a blog post. “I’m enthusiastic about joining an organization at the heart of the sustainable transportation revolution by transforming data into relevant information for people and organizations.”

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D.C. digital marketing and brand management company REQ named a new leader for its tech practice.

REQ recently hired Kat Kuhl as Vice President of Technology and Engineering. In the role, Kuhl will lead the company’s tech solutions group.

She previously served as previously served as Director of Solutions Consulting at FFW and Director of Technology at CHIEF. CEO Trip Donnelly said in an announcement that Kuhl is well-known in the Drupal community, and frequently serves as a mentor.

“Her expertise not only lends itself to streamlining processes and communications internally, but also makes the complex world of tech attainable and accessible to clients,” Donnelly said.

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