Business / Ecommerce / Entrepreneurs / Hiring / Software

Power Moves: Catalyte expands the C-suite with growth in digital services

Plus, a look at recent hires and board seats at Whitebox, Protenus and PGDx. It's an all-growth companies edition of our hiring and promotions column.

Minna Rhee and Marsha Malone are joining Catalyte as chief strategy officers. (Courtesy photo)

Power Moves is a column where we chart the comings and goings of talent across the region, and other people-oriented updates. Got a new hire, new gig or promotion? Tell us:

Catalyte, the Otterbein-based company that uses data science and training to bring software engineers into the workforce, is growing its C-suite.

The company has two new business units for its software services business, focusing on digital services. The divisions will serve the commercial and public sectors, respectively. And Catalyte brought on two chief strategy officers to lead them.

Minna Rhee is joining the company as chief strategy officer of digital services for the commercial unit. She will also lead Surge, a software engineering company acquired by Catalyte in 2018. Rhee brings experience leading international sales organizations for tech companies. She most recently worked at the BORN Group, overseeing $100 million in revenue. Prior to that she served as chief revenue officer at frog and was chief digital, product and marketing officer at SourceMedia.

Marsha Malone will serve as chief strategy officer for digital services in the public sector, bringing experience in commercial and government contracting. She previously served as VP of federal sales at WebEx, and also has experience at Lockheed Martin and federal law enforcement agencies.

“There is universal need across employers, both public and commercial sector, for more productive, diverse and cost-effective technology talent,” said Jacob Hsu, CEO of Catalyte, in a statement. “The difference is in how each market is able to recruit and hire non-traditional talent, like our amazing apprentice developers. By establishing these new business units, we can better serve each market and open thousands of new opportunities for Americans from all backgrounds to be retrained and enter the technology industry. Minna and Marsha have unparalleled expertise in leading growth in these sectors and I am honored to be serving together with them.”

Eliot Pearson. (Courtesy photo)

This follows another C-suite move in March, when Catalyte promoted Eliot Pearson to the role of chief operating officer. Previously VP of technical development, Pearson is now overseeing engineering services across the company’s business units, and for Surge.

“Eliot has been instrumental in tying together all aspects of Catalyte’s engineering services, from delivery of apprentices, to recruiting for our elite network of Surge engineers and overseeing our project management organization,” Hsu said. “As the company evolved and these functions became part of a shared service for our three business units, it made sense to unify them all under Eliot’s leadership.”

A longtime leader in Baltimore’s tech community, Pearson was a 2019 RealLIST Engineers honoree, and recently talked about engineering careers at the Developers Conference.


With the launch of a new tech product this week, Curtis Bay-based ecommerce tech company Whitebox is appointing a leader to its board with data and agency leadership experience at a firm with global reach.

David Williams, the former chairman and CEO of 9,000-employee, Columbia-based customer experience management company Merkle, joined the company’s board of directors as the company launched business intelligence technology called Omnifi. The technology is designed to bring marketing, sales and logistics data together, giving brands a central place to see the data across the digital channels where they sell. The first product under this umbrella is called Omnifi Insights, which gives companies access to tools and data scientists at Whitebox to gain insights into revenue opportunities and spending.

“Fragmented data is no longer acceptable,” Williams said in a statement. “Omnifi fixes a problem brands have long had when it comes to viewing aggregated data across their ecommerce businesses.”

Whitebox last year raised $18 million in Series B funding, in which Williams was an investor. The company also moved its headquarters into a former Under Armour distribution hub, which has space both for technology development and order fulfillment.


Fells Point-based healthcare compliance analytics company Protenus said this month that Joi Smith joined the company as VP of people operations.

Joi Smith. (Courtesy photo)

Smith brings 15 years of experience, and has led transformation of human resources functions to people operations, the broader term that encompasses all of the work that goes into employing a team of people, from hiring to benefits to conflict resolution.

“Our entire organization is excited to have Joi join our team,” said Nick Culbertson, CEO of Protenus, in a statement. “Joi has an impressive understanding of the startup team culture and how to scale and elevate positive company culture as we continue to grow. The pandemic has brought unique opportunities and challenges our team has had to navigate and Joi will be integral in continuing to handle this ever-changing, dynamic environment.”


Canton-based Personal Genome Diagnostics this week appointed Brent Dial as chief financial officer to lead financial operations and strategic initiatives as it grows.

Dial brings 19 years of experience in business leadership, including in finance. He provided corporate finance advisory services as a principal at Chordata Ventures, and was CFO of Anheuser-Busch’s High End Beer unit. Previously, he worked at JPMorgan Chase, Deutsche Bank Securities and TCOM, L.P., and served in the military.

“I am excited to welcome Brent Dial, whose diverse and extensive experience will be a tremendous asset for PGDx as we manage our rapid growth, build our operations for commercial scale, and make strategic investments to bring precision medicine to more patients globally,” said PGDx CEO Megan Bailey in a statement. “Brent has established himself as an outstanding finance and strategic business leader across a number of organizations and is well suited to help lead our efforts to access growth capital to fuel our strategy.”

The cancer genomics company founded by Johns Hopkins researchers last year received FDA approval for its cancer diagnostic kit, called PGDx elio tissue complete. It’s designed to help patients get access at the local level to advanced techniques like next-generation sequencing. In February, it closed a $103 million Series C financing round.

Companies: Whitebox / Catalyte / Protenus
Series: Power Moves

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